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3 Marketing Trends That Are Popping Off In 2020

Good marketing is rarely a one-size-fits-all approach. Depending on your product, brand, and goals, one marketing strategy may work better for your business than another. The good news is that there are so many ways to market your company to the world. But that’s also the bad news: marketing strategies are constantly changing, and what works today may be behind the times tomorrow. If you’re not a full-time marketer, it can be hard to keep up.

Another piece of good news is that you’re in the right place. We’ve combed the industry to find the top marketing strategies for this year that can help any business grow their audience, sales and profits. If you want to be on top of your marketing game, check out these 3 marketing trends that are popping off in 2020.


Video Marketing

If content is king, videos are the jeweled crown - you can’t rule without it. If you have just one marketing strategy in 2020, it needs to be video marketing.

Statistics show that consumers are clamoring for video content. According to Hubspot, 54% of consumers want to see more videos from the brands they support. If you want to give your audience what they want (hint: you do), you’ve got to give them videos, and lots of them.

Making videos for the internet isn’t a new concept but the way that businesses are using them is changing and expanding. Websites, social media and even email campaigns are being used to reach the masses through video marketing. Here are a few of the most popular ways:

Product demonstrations. A more obvious choice, product demonstrations are still one of the most effective ways to use video content. That’s because 52% of users say that watching videos about a product makes them more likely to purchase it. But it’s not just announcing your product - you’ve got to show users how to use it and how it can benefit them directly.

Behind-The-Scenes. These days, it’s not enough to provide a good product. Consumers want to relate, engage and become invested in a business. One good way to do this is to make candid behind-the-scenes videos of what goes on in your daily activities, such as meet the staff or office tour videos.

1:1 Videos. This is a relatively new use of video marketing that’s rising quickly through the ranks. Instead of sending cold emails or making phone calls, businesses are creating personalized video messages to reach new clients. In an age where personalization is everything, it’s a great way to get ahead of the video marketing game in 2020.

The reason that video marketing is so important is simple - it works. Videos are by far the most popular online content, watched by 85% of internet users every month. That’s because videos are easily digestible, keep user’s attention for longer than text, and work well on mobile devices.

Video marketing is also great for your marketing budget because videos are easy to reuse and cross-post. Creating smaller text versions of your videos or editing them into email thumbnails are easy ways to use them again and again and save money on your content strategy.


Social Media Stories

As social media becomes the most popular way to use the internet, platforms are developing new features for users to keep it fresh. Social media stories are a great example of a feature that businesses can - and should - use to their benefit. Facebook, Instagram, and even Youtube now have story features that businesses are using to connect with their followers. 

Stories are similar to posts, but they work a little differently. Stories are pinned to the top of your user’s newsfeeds rather than being posted in the feed. But they’re temporary, lasting for 24 hours at most. These features work in your favor since your stories are easier for users to find and can create a sense of urgency in your audience. But to be effective, they need to be used correctly.

By nature, stories need to be used authentically. That means you should skip the scammy advertising and post content that gives your followers a feel for your business brand and personality. Candid photographs or informal staff interviews connect with your followers on a more personal level.

In contrast, stories’ short lifespan makes them perfect for promotional posts because they convince your followers to take action fast. Use attention-grabbing graphics, filters, and copy to promote your sales and events, and be sure to let your audience know that time is limited.

For even more tips on how to use social media stories, check out our in-depth blog article.  


Geofencing

If you need to draw customers into a brick-and-mortar business, geofencing needs to be on your radar. To put it simply, geo-fencing uses location to market directly to customers near your business. You do this by creating a “geo-fence” around your location and automatically sending pre-made alerts to devices that enter that radius. These alerts can be anything from current sales to coupons to simple text greetings and more.

Imagine this: you’re walking through a shopping center and get a notification that the restaurant you’ve been wanting to try is a few steps away and having a discount on tacos. You’re likely to give it a try, right? That’s geo-fencing. It’s a great way to put your business on the map for customers that are nearby and in a position to stop in.


Geofencing is not as well-known other marketing strategies, but marketing professionals agree that it soon will be. According to one report, geo-fencing is expected to grow 27% by 2020. Though there have been recent security concerns and the technology is still evolving, geo-fencing should definitely be on your marketing map for 2020.


Though your marketing choices are somewhat personal to your business, using these 3 strategies are sure to help you reach your goals and connect with your audience in 2020. If you’re struggling with your marketing strategy, we can help! From social media marketing to email campaigns and more, we offer a range of marketing services to take your business, and your profits, to the next level. Contact us today!


Email Marketing and Social Media: Better Together?

If you’re active online, you likely have an email. You also probably have a social media account (or several). And, you’ve probably seen ads, promotions, and content from businesses on both. Email and social media marketing are both very popular ways that businesses use the digital sphere to market themselves to customers. And for good reason - they’re both effective. But many marketers focus on one or the other and they’re missing out on the benefits of using them both.

Much like salt and pepper, email and social media marketing are good apart but better together. To understand why, let’s first look at them separately before we explain how they can work together to strengthen your marketing efforts.


Email Marketing


When you checked your email this morning, did you scroll through a few email promotions from businesses? Of course you did! Email marketing is the most heavily used form of digital marketing - so much so that it can sometimes become an annoyance (how many times have you clicked “no thank you” today?). But the fact is that email marketing is so popular because it works. In the simplest terms, email marketing is the act of sending marketing materials via email directly to customers who have signed up to receive them. 99% of people check their email every day, many of them first-thing, so marketing there is a lucrative and worthy activity for any business.

So how exactly does it benefit you? People subscribe to your emails because they are interested in your company and want to be kept up-to-date on the latest news and promotions. When your email marketing is done correctly, you’re providing those customers with useful, interesting information each day, directly to their inbox (so they don’t have to search for it). This keeps your business fresh in their minds and helps you stay relevant, strengthening your relationship with them. It also pushes your promotions directly in front of interested customers as opposed to appealing to the masses.

As a business, we all want new customers - but keeping the lines of communication with your existing ones open is equally important, and that is done through email marketing.


Social Media Marketing

We all have a favorite social media business. They may appeal to you because they are funny, innovative, inspiring, or heartfelt; the point is, they do appeal to people, and they keep you coming back for more. This is the result of a well-done social media marketing campaign. Businesses use social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Youtube to market themselves to the public, often very successfully. Social media has 3.2 billion daily users, making it a very big pond full of many waiting fish.

Social media is so important because it allows your business to reach new customers by connecting with your current ones. Through shares, likes, and comments (especially tags), a business can boost its organic reach and get in front of new consumers on a daily basis. It’s also one of the best ways to build your brand, as the tone and type of content you post on social media helps visitors understand and connect with your business. All around, social media marketing is a crucial part of your marketing campaign.


Integrating Your Social Media and Email Marketing

At first glance, it may seem like email and social media marketing are at odds. After all, email marketing only connects with current customers, while social media marketing engages new ones. How do you choose just one?! The strongest marketers don’t. The two can actually co-exist quite nicely, and when integrated they take your marketing efforts from meh to marvelous.

So how do you do it? It’s easier than you think. Think of this as a kind of fishing pole (there’s that fish reference again). Your social media account can get new customers to bite, then your email marketing reels them in and keeps them hooked. Here are a few examples.


Entice Social Media Followers To Sign Up

Social media is a great place to promote your emails! Use your social media accounts to give teasers about your email content or promise exclusive email-only offers to entice followers to sign up. By promoting your email subscription through your social channels, you can increase your mailing lists and then turn those casual followers into loyal customers. It’s like having your coffee and drinking it, too!


Include Social Media Links In Your Emails

Don’t assume that your email audience is aware of your social presence! The next time you send out a marketing email, try including links to your social media pages. You can do this by simply adding clickable widgets to your layout and pointing your viewers in their direction. Add a helpful call-to-action to point them in the right direction.


Promote Your Social Media In Your Emails

Better yet, take it a step further and encourage your email readers to tune into your social media accounts for specific or ongoing information (like promotion or event details). Letting them know that you’re active on social media and giving them a reason to tune in will both boost your social followers and increase your brand awareness.


Use Social Media To Find What Works

Crafting email content can be hard, especially if you’re sending them frequently. Social media can help you decide what types of content your audience is looking for, and it also lets your content play double-duty. Use content that has high engagement from your audience in your emails! This can be facebook posts, Instagram photos, or even follower’s comments. You’ll already know that your audience is interested, and you can promote your social accounts at the same time. Win-Win!

If you aren’t a marketing whiz, this may seem a bit overwhelming. The good news is, we can help! Bis Designs helps businesses just like yours create killer marketing campaigns through email and social media (and more). Contact us today to get started!


4 Reasons Why Your Business Needs A Blog

Once the gem of personal or lifestyle websites, blogging has taken the business industry by storm and is now a highly effective marketing tool, especially for small businesses. Blogging has so many benefits for your company - it can increase your website traffic, widen your target audience, and help create and promote your business brand, among others. Still not convinced? Let’s take a look at the top benefits of a business blog - and how to make them work for you.

 

A Blog Benefits Your SEO

 

Let’s start with the obvious - as a business, you want people to find you. The vast majority of consumers find products and services through search engines, but 75% of them never move away from the first page of results. That’s why paying close attention to your SEO strategy is crucial to achieving your marketing goals. Blogging is one of the easiest ways to boost your Google rankings, and if you want to be found via search engine then Google is king. Each blog post that your site publishes is another page for Google to crawl and “index” in its search algorithm, which increases your website authority (and thus your rankings). Adding new and regular content is also an indicator to search engines that your site is active and current, which increases your visibility factor. In short, blogging is an essential tool if you want to rank highly on Google or any SERP.

 

Be sure to do thorough research and include relevant keywords and topics in your blog content to maximize your SEO success. For more advice on successful SEO, check out our article on the best SEO tips for 2019.

 

A Blog Increases Your Website Traffic

 

You’ve got your website up and running, your business is front and center, and you’re ready to start helping customers! But all you’re hearing is crickets. How do you get people to visit your website?

 

A blog is a great way to help increase your website traffic. Blog content is more shareable than traditional website copy, making it a more effective way to reach your audience. If your content is engaging, solves problems, and focuses on relevant topics, related websites may link to it in their own posts or readers may share it across their social media accounts. You can also cross-post your articles on your own social media accounts, which will increase your business exposure, drive traffic, and help take some of the strain off your marketing department by reducing the need for new content.

 

It’s important to make sharing and linking your content easy. Include social media widgets or hyperlinks in your content, and format your blog images to translate easily across platforms. For even more exposure, try collaborating with related websites or pitching your articles to them for publishing on their site.

 

A Blog Widens Your Audience

 

A carefully crafted business blog will widen your available target audience. Users who are searching for your services will find them easily if your website is SEO-friendly, but what about those who can benefit from your business but may not know it? Through careful blogging, your website can appeal to this untapped section of your audience. This may sound confusing, so let’s look at an example:

 

Say your business sells automobile transmissions. Obviously, you’ll get a great deal of traffic from local users who search “where can I buy an automobile transmission”. But this is a small audience, and those are all people who have already diagnosed their problem and are seeking a solution. What about people who know their car has a problem, but they aren’t sure what it is? This is a much larger audience, and it is one that your business can’t ignore if you want to maximize your profits. By writing a blog post about how to diagnose transmission problems, you’ll reach consumers who need your services but aren’t actively searching for them, and you can help guide them towards purchasing your product. This is called “top of funnel” content, and it’s essential to maximizing your website conversions.

 

Don’t be afraid to vary your content across all of your industry’s challenges, trending news, and current topics. Remember - the goal is to drive a new audience to your site and promote awareness of your business. Once you’ve got their attention, your services will speak for themselves.

 

A Blog Establishes Your Business Brand

 

Online consumers are increasingly concerned with where (and with who) they are spending their money, and businesses who have an identifying brand consistently outperform those who do not. Blogging is a great way to establish and promote your business brand because it gives your business a voice. Whether you want to promote your brand as knowledgeable, caring, quirky, or even humorous, your blog should showcase your company’s values and help engage with your audience on a personal level. As a business you’re likely to be competing in a large market. Establishing a brand through blogging will set your company apart and distinguish you from the competition.

 

If you’re new to business blogging or need help with other areas of your marketing strategy, let BIS Designs help! We can provide consulting services, help design your content strategy, or even manage your business blog for you. If you’re unsure about outsourcing your business blog (can an outsider really capture my brand?), we’ve got you covered - here’s why outsourcing your blogging is a great decision.


Tips for Successful Content Marketing

Google and social media platforms (like Facebook) continue to change their algorithms, making it increasingly difficult for a company to reach its audience. Stellar Content marketing can help your company jump some of the hurdles. In fact, Google and Facebook often reward companies with great content. That’s why it’s critical for companies to provide valuable and informative content on their website and social media pages.

 

If you’re struggling to create killer content, follow these tips to help guide you in creating successful content for your company:

Engage with your followers. You’ve probably heard it many times: engagement is crucial for online marketing success. Here’s why: 

 

  • - Part of the algorithm Facebook put in place that decides how many and who of your followers sees a post has to do with how much engagement your post receives. The more people like, comment on, or share your post, the more people will see your post.
  • - Engagement builds trust and loyalty among your audience when you add personality to your company. Add personality by engaging with your audience through conversations and various interactions and not simply posting about your products or serves. This causes people to connect with your brand as if it is a person, and not simply a product or service. You have a much better chance of selling a product or service to someone who trusts you.
  • - Engaging with your audience makes people feel like they’re more than just another dollar in the bank account. People like to feel important, especially by brands they love. So start paying more attention to your audience. Share and like their posts, comments, Tweets, etc.
 

Establish thought leadership. Position your company as a thought leader that provides valuable resources to its audience. Highlighting yourself as an expert in your industry will draw your audience to you. Instead of going straight to Google for information about your industry, people will start going to your website, blog, and following your social media pages to learn industry trends, tips and tricks, and more.

 

Keep it fresh. Keep your content fresh by incorporating new and a variety of content for your customers to read and engage with. Consider mixing up your weekly posts with a guest post or a live product/service demo. Be sure to post on special holidays and incorporate seasonal content into your posts. Use catchy images and high-quality graphics to keep your page looking fresh and not like spam. Incorporate monthly themes, where you focus on certain topics each month, educating your audience beyond their expectations about each topic (thought-leadership!). 

 

Be authentic. With the growth of the Internet and social media platforms, it has become increasingly important to be authentic. Advertising your product, service, or company falsely will always come to light through reviews and comments from customers. Your audience is far more informed than you think, and they will call out a scam without hesitation. One of the top influencers on the web, Neil Patel, put it best when he said, “Authentic businesses inspire and prosper”. Neil Patel advises people to be authentic by:

 

  • - Being real, charitable, consistent, responsive (See, we told you engagement was part of the key), and accountable (If you make a mistake, don’t be afraid to admit it and apologize to your customer)
  • - Providing statistics and facts to back up what you say
  • - Respecting the privacy of your customers
  • - Telling your true brand story
  • - Highlighting your good reputation
 

Engage with your followers. Establish thought leadership. Keep it fresh. Be authentic. Each of these tips will help you create a better content marketing strategy to help your company grow. In combination, these tips will help your company soar!  So, give it a try, and if you’re still struggling, give us a call! We’re here to help you create content and manage your digital marketing in a way that will capture the attention of your audience.

 

 

RELATED: 

Should You Outsource Your Business Blogging? 

 

Phillip Long - CISSP, CEO of BIS Technology Group, along with his team of marketing and information technology experts, will walk you through an overview of  what your business should be doing to protect your data and plan your digital marketing strategies.

About BIS Technology Group

BIS Technology Group is the technology leader on the Gulf Coast and is comprised of four divisions: Information Technology, Web Design & Digital Marketing,  Office Equipment and Business Consulting. Together these divisions help local businesses exceed expectations and allow them to group to their full potential while minimizing risks. To learn more about BIS Technology Group, visit bistechnologygroup.com.

You may reach out to us at:
Phone: 251-405-2527
Email: plong@askbis.com


Stay On Top: SEO in 2019

Hello, 2019! It’s a New Year, which means it’s time to get ahead of the competition and on top of your search engine optimization (SEO). In the next few minutes, we’ll cover these five topics to get you thinking about improving your SEO strategy: Mobile-first indexing, page speed, thought-provoking content, featured snippets, and RankBrain.

1. Mobile-first indexing

As of March 2018, Google started rolling out what they call “mobile-first indexing”. In 2019, this concept will become even more relevant as mobile users rise and Google adapts mobile-first indexing to more and more websites.

Searches on desktops are declining, driving the pressing need for appropriate indexing based on the mobile versions of websites. Due to this, mobile-first indexing was created with the intention of helping mobile users easily find what they’re looking for. So, what does this mean for you? Should you completely disregard the desktop version of your website and solely focus on the mobile? The simple answer is no. Both your desktop and mobile versions will come into play in the New Year. This is why Google’s new strategy is called mobile-first indexing, not mobile-only indexing.

In order to avoid negatively impacting your rankings, ensure your mobile and desktop versions are developed with quick loading times and optimized images and content. It’s important not to sacrifice your desktop version for your mobile version, or vise versa.  

2. Page speed

In the new mobile-first index, page speed has become a huge ranking factor, primarily impacting pages that deliver the slowest experience to users on mobile versions. Slow loading speeds cause users to bounce from 32-90% as page load times increase from 1-5 seconds. Research has shown, consumers don’t like to wait for content, especially while on their mobile devices.

How can you increase your page speed? There are three easy steps you can take to increase your speed. First, you can conduct a page speed test using Google’s PageSpeed Insights tool. Next, take into account the size of your pages; many sites are loaded down with too much information, making it difficult to process. Cutting down on the bulk will help your speed improve. Third, contact your web/SEO expert, like us! We can help determine what steps you should take to improve your page speed (and overall SEO). 

3. Thought-provoking content

It’s time to stop creating content for the sake of creating content. Focus on creating content that solves a problem by offering advice, motivation, and engagement for your customer. Creating exceptional content shouldn’t be forgotten and will likely always be an important key to improving your SEO. Exceptional content keeps people wanting more, bringing them back to your site.

4. Featured Snippets

A featured snippet is a short summary to a user’s search displayed on top of Google search results. The image below is a snippet, and trust us, it’s where you want your website to appear when consumers search for a service or product.

By using snippets effectively, you can maximize your authority, prove that Google chooses your page over competitors, and increase your traffic. You can earn a featured snippet by analyzing keyword opportunities and implementing them into your site, creating strategic content, having a Q&A section on your website, clearly outlining your subheadings, lists, tables, etc., and polishing up any existing snippets.

5. RankBrain

RankBrain is a machine-learning algorithm that works alongside Google’s current algorithm, Hummingbird, to improve Google’s search engine by learning and identifying patterns and interpreting unknown search strings. Machine learning is what happens when a computer learns by experience, and that’s exactly what RankBrain does. It intelligently gathers users habits and needs to direct them to the most useful content for their search. It works by taking segments of the entire search and relating them to the most popular searches with those related terms, and as people click on their desired result, RankBrain grows in its search knowledge. RankBrain affects how Google ranks search results. It learns which results are relevant and pushes them to the top.

According to Google, RankBrain is the third most important factor in SEO, after content and links. The key to overcoming RankBrain is to provide users with a positive experience through easy-to-navigate, detailed, and quality content to optimize your site.

If you’re feeling overwhelmed by the slough of information and ever-changing world of SEO, don’t stress! We’re here to keep you abreast of the changes, and help you implement them into your website structure.

 

RELATED: 

Mobile-Responsive Web Design and Why Your Business Needs it

 


Phillip Long - CISSP, CEO of BIS Technology Group, along with his team of marketing and information technology experts, will walk you through an overview of  what your business should be doing to protect your data and plan your digital marketing strategies.

About BIS Technology Group

BIS Technology Group is the technology leader on the Gulf Coast and is comprised of four divisions: Information Technology, Web Design & Digital Marketing,  Office Equipment and Business Consulting. Together these divisions help local businesses exceed expectations and allow them to group to their full potential while minimizing risks. To learn more about BIS Technology Group, visit bistechnologygroup.com.

You may reach out to us at:
Phone: 251-405-2527
Email: plong@askbis.com


Facebook and Cambridge Analytica: What exactly happened?

If you’ve been keeping up with the national news for the last two weeks, you’ve heard the reports of political campaigns acquiring private data on millions of Facebook users.  It has now sparked new questions about how the social media giant protects user information.

First of all, as a business advertising on Facebook, we are all thankful for the data which identifies personalities and buying trends of users.  This doesn’t mean people’s personal information like credit cards, social security numbers and other secure information was ever shared via Facebook.

What does it mean?

When you “like” a certain post, take a quiz or share a family, friend or business page’s post, Facebook keeps track of this content.  Why? Well, when they know what you like, they know what to put in your newsfeed. 

This all plays a big part in Facebook’s algorithms, which have changed drastically in the last two years.  The algorithms now only allow content that you are interested in to be in your newsfeed.  To me, this isn’t a bad thing at all.  It is a highly intelligent way of keeping users happy and engaged.  For businesses, it also makes it more difficult to advertise because you need to pay attention to what users want to see on a daily basis and tailor your content to that audience.  Otherwise, your content will go unseen.  This is what I do on a daily basis for dozens of business accounts, study trends in order to make sure the business pages are reaching the most customers. 

Now, back to Cambridge Analytica. What’s the big deal? The firm offered tools that could identify the personalities of American voters and influence their behavior.  This behavior was then, allegedly, used to target voters for the election.  This app has since been removed from Facebook but there are reports that the data still exists, so this is why Facebook is being scrutinized.

What kind of information was collected and how was it acquired?

The data included details on users’ identities, friend networks and “likes”.  The idea was to map personality traits based on what people had liked on Facebook, and then use that information to target audiences with digital ads.

Researchers in 2014 asked users to take a personality survey and download an app, which scraped some private information from their profiles and those of their friends, activity that Facebook permitted at the time and has since banned. 

The technique had been developed at Cambridge University’s Psychometrics Center.  Facebook says no passwords or “sensitive pieces of information” had been taken. 

Facebook has always prohibited this kind of data to be sold or transferred “to any ad network, data broker or other advertising service” so the question everyone has been asking is, was Facebook hacked? No one really knows for sure.

What is Facebook doing to fix the situation?

Really, there isn’t much they can do about it at this point. Once the data is out, there isn’t really a way to recall it. They can conduct all the forensic audits they want, but the information will remain out there in some form, and will likely remain useable and indicative. For damage control, Facebook needs to show users that it is improving, learned its lessons and their systems are actually now better for it.

We’ll see in the next year whether or not users pull away from the social giant or whether it will blow over and everyone will go back to using Facebook as usual.  As already stated, no sensitive information was really obtained but it is simply a matter of users trusting Facebook to keep up with their social habits without exploiting it for political reasons.

What do you think? Does it bother you that Facebook tracks your likes and, in turn, creates a personality profile of your daily habits in order for businesses to advertise to you? We want to know! Let us know on Facebook!

RELATED:

12 Reasons Why Your Business Needs A Content Marketing Strategy

Author: Stephanie May - smay@askbisdesigns.com 

 

Phillip Long - CISSP, CEO of BIS Technology Group, along with his team of marketing and information technology experts, will walk you through an overview of  what your business should be doing to protect your data and plan your digital marketing strategies.

About BIS Technology Group

BIS Technology Group is the technology leader on the Gulf Coast and is comprised of four divisions: Information Technology, Web Design & Digital Marketing,  Office Equipment and Business Consulting. Together these divisions help local businesses exceed expectations and allow them to group to their full potential while minimizing risks. To learn more about BIS Technology Group, visit bistechnologygroup.com.

You may reach out to us at:
Phone: 251-405-2527
Email: plong@askbis.com

 


5 Tips for Improving Your Emails

When it comes down to it, email marketing is all about getting the basics right.

Yes, you should be segmenting your lists and yes, paying attention to those open rates and conversion rates are important but you also want to invest time in strategies like positioning, voice and value of your emails.  These 5 tips may seem basic but you’ll find that many of your favorite emails coming through your inbox, the ones you open every day, employ the tips in a single email.  For best results, apply liberally.

Create an exclusive club.

Making your email subscribers feel special is a great way to generate excitement for the content or offers you send them.  It’s also a powerful community-building tool. 

Exclusivity can be subtle, like the Apple example below.  Whenever Apple launches a new product, customers camp outside their stores to get their hands on the latest device.  By offering a pre-order, Apple can cash in on that excitement without putting additional stress on their retail stores.  With free shipping as an added incentive, these emails will no doubt drive huge sales before the next iPhone is even released.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ask for Feedback.  

As long as you’re not too pushy, it’s okay to ask for feedback. Find a way to ask without making it sound like the feedback is for the company’s gain but rather to help you, as a business owner, find ways to make their service better.  Here is an example:

Get personal.

Email is a great way to humanize your brand.  The inbox is an intimate place, mostly used for personal conversation.  Your presence there is a privilege, so do your best to write like a human.  It’s okay to talk about challenges, obstacles and even failures.  Readers can relate since they are likely facing similar situations, whether in business or in their personal lives.  Even quotes from your company’s CEO can go a long way, like the example below.

Tell readers what to do next.

One big mistake people make with conversion is failure to make the next step completely clear.  How can someone convert if they aren’t sure what to do next?

Conversion rate experts stress this over and over again: “Be clear and direct with your users, telling them exactly what you’d like them to do.”

The idea is simple: just add the webinar to your calendar.  Not only does this reinforce the behavior pattern of clicking the emails, but it also increases the chances that the registrants actually attend the webinar.  Once it’s on the calendar, they will get alerts from their phone and/or computer…it’s like free marketing!

Keep readers on their toes. 

This tip is unconventional, but it’s proven to work.

On one hand, you want your readers to know what to expect in your emails.  In our case, here at BIS Designs, that means a new blog post every Wednesday.  Our readers know there will be a new blog post each week but they don’t know what topic will be covered until they receive an email once the new blog has been posted on our website. 

Conclusion

There are plenty of tips out there about how to increase your open rates but you also want to concentrate on becoming and remaining valuable to your clients and customers. If you have any additional tips to share with us, feel free to share in the comments!

RELATED:

5 Ways to Get Creative with Email Subject Lines

Author: Stephanie May

 

Phillip Long - CISSP, CEO of BIS Technology Group, along with his team of marketing and information technology experts, will walk you through an overview of  what your business should be doing to protect your data and plan your digital marketing strategies.

About BIS Technology Group

BIS Technology Group is the technology leader on the Gulf Coast and is comprised of four divisions: Information Technology, Web Design & Digital Marketing,  Office Equipment and Business Consulting. Together these divisions help local businesses exceed expectations and allow them to group to their full potential while minimizing risks. To learn more about BIS Technology Group, visit bistechnologygroup.com.

You may reach out to us at:
Phone: 251-405-2527
Email: plong@askbis.com


4 Basic Tips of Blogging Search Engine Optimization

Here’s a quick illustration of how SEO works…

Google has developed automatic algorithms that rank your website.  They send out what are called “spiders” to “crawl” your site and check it for over 100 indicators that determine whether the website is valuable or useless.  These indicators include things like backlinks, domain age, traffic, fresh content, etc.

SEO can be considered the art of making sure those crawling spiders are happy with what they find.  It is a very complex field that is always changing but in all that chaos there are a few constants that have remained the same since the beginning. 

1. You need your own domain and hosting.

One thing that beginners need to know is that you need your own domain and hosting.  Free blog set ups don’t do any favors for your SEO efforts.  Why?

People tend to speculate that if you were serious about your website you would get your own name and host it yourself.  Google only wants to point to websites that are considered serious and trustworthy and so this is a basic signal.

Starting your own website, hosting and a business blog can seem intimidating but that’s why we’re here.  We offer multiple packages to meet your needs, which saves you a lot of time.

2. Problem solving with original content.

Keep in mind that Google’s entire purpose is to provide their customers with relevant and useful search results.  Everything they do is built around this goal.

To be realistic, the most important thing you can do for your SEO is create the most useful content that solves people’s problems. If you are solving problems that people are searching for then it is likely that you are going to get shared on social media and ranked higher in Google.

And “original content” means so much more than just blog posts these days.  You can expand into:

  • Videos 
  • Make tutorials or video posts.  This builds links and traffic from YouTube and does well on mobile devices.
  • Photography
  • Original images and photos can boost your rankings as well as add value to your blog posts. Adding your own logos and sharing to social media is an extra layer of marketing, too.
  • Podcasts
  • iTunes has grown fast as people get better smart phones and spend more time plugged in.  Adding a podcast to your blog will ensure a unique and original addition for SEO. You want to build a relationship with your customers and readers by helping them out.  This will mean more sharing and faster results in your search engine rankings.

3.  Make sure your theme is SEO optimized.

Think of SEO as having two components: the off-site stuff like social media and backlinks and the on-site stuff like optimizing your theme.

Optimizing your theme is important because it helps give Google indicators that you are a trustworthy site.  It also helps Google find your content.  Some of the things to keep in mind when optimizing are:

  • Mobile Response
  • Cleanly coded
  • Fast loading
  • Secure domain
  • Original theme (rather than a pre-made template)

4. Build your social media profiles constantly.

You want to have a big focus on social media for SEO purposes as well as traffic building purposes.

Why?

Because Google is now looking to social media as a signal of an article’s authority and relevance.  If people are sharing on Facebook or tweeting about it, you must have written something pretty good.  The best way for this to happen is to build a strong following, keep them engaged and they’ll see your blog posts as they are shared. 

Commenting and sharing other business blogs is always a great way to build a community and possible cross-promoting opportunities for the future as well.

Are you now ready to get a blog started and make sure your SEO is on the right track? Schedule a meeting and we’ll handle every detail from writing, optimizing your website and sharing to your social media!

 

Author: Stephanie May 

RELATED:

5 Benefits of Business Blogging

12 Reasons Why Your Business Needs A Content Marketing Strategy

 

Phillip Long - CISSP, CEO of BIS Technology Group, along with his team of marketing and information technology experts, will walk you through an overview of  what your business should be doing to protect your data and plan your digital marketing strategies.

About BIS Technology Group

BIS Technology Group is the technology leader on the Gulf Coast and is comprised of four divisions: Information Technology, Web Design & Digital Marketing,   Office Equipment and Business Consulting. Together these divisions help local businesses exceed expectations and allow them to group to their full potential while minimizing risks. To learn more about BIS Technology Group, visit bistechnologygroup.com.

You may reach out to us at:
Phone: 251-405-2527
Email: plong@askbis.com

 

 


Why Your Business Needs A Paid Facebook Ad Budget

Whether you’ve noticed or not, organic traffic on Facebook has dropped – and it’s likely impacting your company in a big way.

There are a few reasons that you need a Facebook advertising strategy and budget.  Let’s start with the basics – because Facebook’s algorithm does not make it easy for business pages to succeed on Facebook. 

What does the term “Facebook algorithm” actually mean? And how does it work?

Facebook’s algorithm controls who sees the content that you share.  It’s not as simple as you posting a status update then Facebook pushing it out to all of your followers.  That’s a thing of the past.  Not everyone who follows your page will see your posts.  Facebook is way more intelligent now.  And, there’s a reason for that, but we’ll get into that later.

Adam Mosseri (VP, News Feed at Facebook) puts Facebook’s algorithm in layman’s terms for us.  He says he thinks about it like he would when ordering his wife something to eat at a restaurant. 

The Facebook algorithm process goes like this:  

  1. Facebook considers all recent posts (this is like checking the menu to see what options you have).
  2. Facebook looks for signals that you might like a particular post (like knowing your wife likes salmon).
  3. Facebooks makes predictions on what you like and shows those posts first (like ordering the salmon).

This process happens on millions of devices countless times each day.  And, it’s also the reason why your Facebook business page’s posts aren’t getting as many views as it used to.

Why isn’t my Facebook business page performing well?

This makes a lot of sense when you think about it from a business perspective. The reality is that Facebook is a business.  And how does a business like Facebook make money? You guessed it – paid advertising. 

So why isn’t your Facebook business page making you money? Because the only way for company pages to succeed on Facebook is through Facebook paid advertising.  Facebook’s only real concern is to find ways for more business pages to spend more money.  You can’t blame them.  Any CEO would do the same thing.

The truth is that social media doesn’t work the way it did in the past.

Facebook’s current algorithm is very different than it used to be in 2000.  Back then, you could post anything on Facebook, and it was guaranteed to be shown to your audience. 

This is because posts were served in reverse chronological order.  In 2009, Facebook changed the algorithm to be based on popularity. 

As you might’ve guessed, the Facebook algorithm is changing more frequently than ever.  Simply posting on your page every day without a Facebook advertising strategy or budget is a waste of time.

Here’s what you should be using Facebook for –

Facebook Paid Advertising

The new reality is that businesses on Facebook are unlikely to succeed without putting a budget toward Facebook paid advertising.  In turn, this requires a Facebook advertising strategy similar to how you would strategize for billboard, radio or TV ads. 

When creating a Facebook ad campaign, there are a few key things that you need to consider – like your goals, target audience and the content of your ad.  Unfortunately, this isn’t as easy as it sounds.  Facebook ad campaigns can get incredibly detailed and complicated, and the platform itself isn’t exactly user-friendly.  We’d love to dive into the specific best practices for executing a Facebook advertising strategy, but that’s a whole other blog

Its Database

What you’re really doing when you create a Facebook ad campaign, is using Facebook for its extremely extensive database.  In other words, you’re using Facebook paid advertising to buy an audience. 

Think about all of the millions of people that use Facebook.  In fact, Facebook has more than 2 billion monthly active users according to the company’s website.  That’s a lot of people – a lot of people that may be interested in your product or service. 

Think about Facebook’s database as an untapped market.  You may not have their email or mailing address but you have their Facebook profile. 

When you use Facebook paid advertising, you are purchasing access to advertise to millions of people that you otherwise would have had no access to.  Even better, you can segment your audience to the specifics of your ideal customer by choosing preferred age, gender, interests, etc. to give you an incredibly high customer value. 

Organic Posting 2-5 Times a Week

Just because you realize that Facebook paid advertising is more lucrative than simple sharing updates on your company’s page (otherwise known as organic posting), doesn’t mean that you can give up organic posting altogether. 

There’s a huge difference between social marketing and social selling.  Social selling is where you can really see the return on your investment, and it includes your Facebook paid advertising strategy that we talked about in this blog post.  However, social marketing is also essential.

Other than running Facebook ad campaigns, it’s still very critical to be active on your company page.

Think about this scenario – a highly qualified lead that saw your Facebook ad in their newsfeed now visits your company’s Facebook business page to learn more about you.  But, you haven’t posted an update in months because you focused all of your efforts on your Facebook advertising strategy.  That scenario isn’t exactly ideal because the customer doesn’t get any added value, in turn stopping their customer journey. 

This is why it’s extremely important to pay attention to your Facebook advertising strategy as well as organic posting.  It may seem like a lot to balance, which is why marketing companies like us (BIS Designs) are here to ease you into the process. 

Fun Fact: Did you know that the average person will spend over five years of their life on social media. WOW! That’s a lot of time spent on Facebook!

 

Author: Stephanie May 

 

RELATED: 

5 Benefits of Business Blogging 

 

Phillip Long - CISSP, CEO of BIS Technology Group, along with his team of marketing and information technology experts, will walk you through an overview of  what your business should be doing to protect your data and plan your digital marketing strategies.

About BIS Technology Group

BIS Technology Group is the technology leader on the Gulf Coast and is comprised of four divisions: Information Technology, Web Design & Digital Marketing,   Office Equipment and Business Consulting. Together these divisions help local businesses exceed expectations and allow them to group to their full potential while minimizing risks. To learn more about BIS Technology Group, visit bistechnologygroup.com.

You may reach out to us at:
Phone: 251-405-2527
Email: plong@askbis.com

 

 

 

 

 


4 Marketing Tips To Get More Leads

The most common question from marketing clients is “How do I get more leads for my business?” 

There are plenty of practical methods for generating quality leads.  Blogging. Sharing and caring on social Media.  Strategic landing pages. Event marketing. Email.  Most marketers are using all of these channels and more. So why aren’t the majority of brands drowning in qualified leads?

Research shows that 65% of marketers are still struggling to figure out which content is effective.  60 percent are unable to produce engaging content.  Only 23 percent of B2B marketers have moved to a customer-centric organizational structure.  A lot of marketers are still missing the mark, using content to appeal to customers, rather than to provide value to customers

If you want to get more quality leads, you need to do better quality marketing.  The trick to doing that is to first step back, in order to move forward.  Go back and refine your buyer personas.  How can you better meet their preferences and expectations? Look at where you can improve your blog, email and social media content to better serve your audience. 

No more bull running in a china shop approach and generating mediocre content and tossing it at your audience.  No more throwing dollars at Facebook ads and waiting for the leads to roll in.  Here are the hacks that will help you refine and improve your marketing and truly excel at lead generation. 

UP YOUR CONTENT GAME

You should always be on the quest to enhance the type of content you are using.  Content marketing goes far beyond blog posts.  Consider investing more so you can deliver a premium level of content. 

  • Infographics
  • Event Marketing
  • Webinars
  • White papers
  • Interactive Tools

Your content should be engaging and “pretty”.  All photos should be of great quality, captions should be short but interesting.  Ever notice how television commercials use a short amount of time to catch your attention? The attention span of the average human is not very long, so you need to catch their attention with your graphics, photos and captions on social media within a glance.  Blogs and email campaigns need to have clear and concise titles or subject lines. 

SIMPLIFY YOUR WEBSITE DESIGN

Dynamic isn’t always a good thing when it comes to trying to get across a message.  With website design, the more complex, the bigger disaster you may have on your hands.

Keep your website design clear and to the point.  That doesn’t mean you can’t be creative.  It does mean avoid excess text, confusing visuals and too many concepts.  What you do what is a clear message and navigation bar.  Lots of white space.  Use website real estate for the essentials for getting leads, like forms and contact info. 

You don’t want your design to scream when a prospect lands on your site. 

BETTER PERSONALIZE YOUR EMAILS

How are your email open-rates? Small businesses get around a 2 to 3 percent open-rate percentage, and larger companies get closer to 10 percent or even more.  Overall, the average hovers around 4 percent. 

The goal should be to improve your email rates to help get more leads.  How to do it?  A simple trick is to use more personalized messaging.  With the style and tone expectations of your target audience in mind, see if your emails make more of an impact with a more conversational tone.  Try adding an image in the closing signature – a staff member whose name is on the emails.  Use names and first person tone of voice in the subject line, greetings, and closings.  Segment your emails with your marketing software to ensure the right people are getting the right messaging depending on where they are in the sales funnel.

Research has shown that personalization leads to six times higher email transaction rates.  Worth a shot!

KEEP REFINING

You don’t necessarily need to revolutionize your marketing strategy to get more leads. You may see the results you’re after simply by making a few changes or trying new techniques.  Try these hacks.  Measure their impact.  Then keep making them better.  You’ll get more leads as long as you continually prime your marketing for the people you’re trying to reach.  For more tips and to hire a team of marketing professionals to handle this part of your business for you – contact our office.

RELATED: 

5 Benefits of Business Blogging 

12 Reasons Why Your Business Needs A Content Marketing Strategy 

 

Author: Stephanie May 

 

Phillip Long - CISSP, CEO of BIS Technology Group, along with his team of marketing and information technology experts, will walk you through an overview of  what your business should be doing to protect your data and plan your digital marketing strategies.

About BIS Technology Group

BIS Technology Group is the technology leader on the Gulf Coast and is comprised of four divisions: Information Technology, Web Design & Digital Marketing,   Office Equipment and Business Consulting. Together these divisions help local businesses exceed expectations and allow them to group to their full potential while minimizing risks. To learn more about BIS Technology Group, visit bistechnologygroup.com.

You may reach out to us at:
Phone: 251-405-2527
Email: plong@askbis.com

 


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