16 Jun

Local marketing

You are probably hearing a lot about online local marketing especially if you are a small business owner.  Almost every SEO / SEM company that calls you is trying to sell you on having a spot on page 1 or getting you more leads by offering some spin on online marketing.

1. What is online local marketing? Basically online local marketing is something that is employed by small local businesses.  It is focusing your efforts on prospective clients that are located in the area that the product or service is available.  For example if you are located in San Clemente, California and you are looking for carpet cleaning – you wouldn’t want to be presented with carpet cleaning companies located in San Jose, CA in your search results.  You would want to see a list of San Clemente carpet cleaners presented.

2. How to you target your local area? First you are going to want to list your business on Google +, Maps, Yelp, Foursquare, Yahoo, etc.  Most of them allow you to choose a service area.  When you list your service area, San Clemente, CA for example, you would then select how many miles from San Clemente that your business is available – 5 miles, 10 miles, 35 miles, etc.  So when someone types in Carpet Cleaning San Clemente only businesses that service San Clemente will show up in the search results.

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10 Jun

Free and Paid Traffic

When talking of web traffic there are two main categories – free and paid.

  • What is free traffic – Free traffic is basically people who find your website organically.  Typically, when we think of organic leads or traffic, we think of search engines and ranking and SEO and keywords. This is definitely one way to look at free traffic. However, visitors can come from word of mouth or other websites that are linking to you or even videos.
  • What is paid traffic – Paid traffic is what you “pay” to get eyeballs to your site.  It could be ads or social media advertising. Google, Yelp, Facebook, etc all offer paid advertising that are targeted specifically to the a demographic that is interested in your goods or services.

I find it interesting that people refer to organic visits as free.  It takes a lot of time and money  to get those organic leads. Word of mouth is one thing, but ranking and getting people coming to your site because you are found in maps, or because you are on page 1 of Google certainly isn’t free. 

If you are focusing on free / organic traffic here are some tips:

  • Content – Your content need to be original, good quality and frequently updated.  Search engines and humans  alike will love your site.
  • Citations – Get your business listed on as many reputable places as you can. Yellow pages, chamber of commerce, Angie’s list, etc.
  • Social Sites – Get your business on Facebook, Yelp, Google for business, Twitter, Pinterest. Invite your friends and go viral. Build a huge network and target your followers and supports.
  • Links – Try to get links to point to your site that are in the same niche and that are respected by search engines like Google, Yahoo, Bing, etc.
  • Mobile – Make sure your website is mobile friendly.  If it isn’t,  your site will be ranked lower than other sites that are mobile friendly. Check to see if your site is mobile friendly. https://www.google.com/webmasters/tools/mobile-friendly/

No matter how you get visitors to your site, free or paid – it will be well worth your time and money.

09 Jun

Mobile Apps and Marketing

When creating the perfect strategy for your online marketing campaign, it’s important to keep mobile users in mind. And in doing so, you have got to think about the option of a mobile app and if it is really beneficial to your marketing strategy or not.

So, some of the great things about a mobile app are that it:

  • Keeps you at users fingertips. Honestly, it’s very easy to just open up the phone and tap your app to use your service
  • Makes you easily found. Most people with smart phones down load apps, and use them daily. If you are in the app store and someone searches for an app that does what you do, you can see your customer base increase from those downloads
  • It allows consumers to use your service easier. If you are the type of business where people repeatedly use your service, such as frequently downloading information, etc, then having an app where they can easily do that just makes your service that much easier to use.

With all of that being said, a mobile app is definitely not for everyone and every business. In fact, there are many sites who just will not benefit at all from having a mobile app.

Before you consider anything at all about the potential of your business having an app, you are going to need to look at the cost. Building an outstanding app with plenty of features can be very costly. Plus, you have to maintain it. There are going to be upgrades, bug fixes, adding and deleting information, etc. It is a lot harder to maintain than a website.

Also, you need to think about the usefulness of an app for your type of business. If your app is basically just going to contain information such as a list of services and some special offers, then an app isn’t really for you.

Mobile apps are designed for services that are meant to be utilized fairly consistently and repetitively. Think of ordering pizza and other types of services like that. If your app is something they will only use every once in a great while, then it will be deleted. And you really don’t want that.

If your business is the kind that isn’t really going to be good for a mobile app, then just focus on creating a great mobile site. Honestly, for the majority of online businesses, just creating a spectacular mobile site is really the way to go.

In the end, it really is up to you and your business on if using a mobile app is the right way to go. In my personal opinion, I would definitely weigh the costs and if it is actually going to be beneficial to your business before handing over the money though.

09 Jun

Welcome to my newbie marketing blog

I have jumped back into marketing with both feet.  But, instead of going back to corporate I am doing it from my kitchen table – in between school drop off and pick up, after school activities, play dates and summer vacation.

I managed to make some money one the side while I studied and experimented with online marketing.

I am not a blogger. But, I decided to help other people along with helping myself.  If you are new to blogging or curious about marketing for your business. I hope to enlighten you.

Thank you for visiting my blog. Hope to see you back here soon.