9 Awesome Tools to Help Your Twitter Game

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With over 328 monthly active users, it’s hard not to acknowledge the power and popularity of one of the world’s most prominent social media platforms. The microblogging trend has taken the internet by storm and it’s easy for anyone to follow their favorite brands and celebrities from the ease of their phone. You too can take advantage of this platform by utilizing these handy tools to boost your marketing efforts.

Hashtagify

Twitter is all about hashtags and there’s nothing better at finding the right hashtag than Hashtagify. If you want to know which hashtags work best for your industry, Hashtagify is the tool for you. With over 40 million hashtags in its repository, Hashtagify will be your best friend to get noticed during hashtag searches.

Tweriod

The clever combination of “Twitter” and “period” should tell you all you need to know about this app. You can spy on your followers and see when they are most active on Twitter, therefore giving you a better idea of when to post during peak times. Combine this with a scheduling app and watch your retweets climb higher.

Buffer

Speaking of scheduling apps, Buffer gives you the ability to schedule tweets and posts at certain times. This is especially useful when trying to target your audience during peak times or when experimenting with different time zones and the like. You can pre-write all your tweets and have them scheduled to be sent out in a few hours or even a few weeks.

Twilert

Another clever combination of words, this app alerts you when your keywords are messaged on Twitter. For example, you might opt in to receive emails whenever someone mentions your brand name on Twitter, allowing you to swiftly respond to them. Managing your social media presence and watching what people are saying about your brand is incredibly important to maintain a positive image of your company.

Bit.ly

Bit.ly is great because it does two things. The first is that it shortens your links which is very useful for fitting in everything you need to say in a 140-character limit. The second thing Bit.ly does is track the number of clicks so you can see how many people actually interacted with your link.

TweetChat

One of the most annoying aspects of Twitter is that you can’t interact with someone directly unless you send them a direct message or input their handle in a private tweet. Luckily, TweetChat changes all that. This handy app allows you to have private conversations without all that other annoying hassle.

BuzzSumo

This tool used by everyone from BuzzFeed, Rolling Stone, National Geographic, IBM, Expedia, and more. It’s most useful feature is that it allows you to see what sort of content related to a certain topic is most popular so that you can gain insight as to how people are talking about that topic. It also helps you track what your competitors are doing on social media so you can compare statistics against them.

Triberr

Twitter is a great place to find like-minded people. Triberr does exactly that; you can find “tribes” of people with the same interests or in the same industry as you.

HootSuite

If you are in charge of managing multiple social media accounts, HootSuite is the tool for you. This handy program allows you to simultaneously look at and manage several different accounts at the same time even if those accounts are on the same platform. Its clean interface makes it easy to use and allows you to compare posts side-by-side.

These are just a few of many useful Twitter tools that can help gain you followers and boost brand engagement. Simply find out which ones work best for you, make an account, and have fun.

All of these apps are easy to use, so feel free to experiment and test out different techniques to find out which marketing strategy works best for you.  And, if you’d like more access to invaluable online marketing strategies, check out our done-for-you service.

 

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6 Ways to Improve Your Email’s Subject Lines

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Massive email marketing campaigns are a great way to get more eyes on your newsletter or website since you can reach thousands of people at once. However, your campaign won’t be successful if nobody opens your message. According to Madison Logic, over 122 billion emails are sent an hour, so knowing how to stand out from the crowd is important.

Your email’s headline is arguably the most important part of the message since it’s the part readers will see first and make a split-second decision whether opening the message is worth their time. Headlines that aren’t interesting will quickly be marked as read or deleted. In fact, copywriter coach Chris Marlow claims that studies have proven that headlines are responsible for 50-75% of an ad’s success.

Knowing just how much of your campaign’s success rests on the headline alone, it’s important that you really take the time to examine how effective your headlines are. Here are a few great tips to craft better headlines:

Personalize your subject line.

A study by MailChimp examined about 24 billion emails and found that subject lines with the recipient’s first and/or last name were opened more often than those without. The most effective emails had both the first and last name, though those which only used the last name were strangely more effective than emails that only used the first name.

The power of first name personalization varied based on industries. Personalized emails sent to those in the government were opened 92% more often than usual while there was 45% difference for the creative services/agency industry. There were positive effects in all sorts of industries such as software, art, retail, and entertainment, but proved to be ineffective in the legal industry with a -31% open rate.

Create a sense of urgency.

A headline that compels the user to read right away will surely be opened. Such a headline tells the reader that there is some important information within the email that needs to be read right away and can’t be put off until later.

The aforementioned MailChimp study found that the following words results in a higher open rate:

  • Urgent: 79%
  • Breaking: 68%
  • Important: 55%
  • Alert: 31%

Note that Adestra similarly found that “alert” lead to a 61.8% increase in open rates.

You could also give a deadline with phrases like “today only” or “last chance” to make sure that they know they must act now.

Make them feel special.

Much like how adding a first and last name to a subject line makes the email feel more personal, so too does adding phrases that make the email sound like it’s exclusively for the reader. Headlines such as “An exclusive offer just for you,” “For your eyes only,” or “A message for our dear customers only” makes the reader know that this message is just for them or their group of people.

Keep it short and simple.

Your subject line should ideally be 6-10 words, under 50 characters, and provide a description of what the reader can expect in the message. People are used to receiving an overabundance of emails and won’t want to waste any time on something that doesn’t immediately meet their needs. Subject lines that are too vague or too detailed won’t be opened very often.

Short headlines are especially important when considering that 40% of emails are opened on mobile and that longer headlines will get cut off. You can shorten your headline by using contractions and not spelling out numbers. (i.e. “don’t” instead of “do not” and “45” instead of “forty-five”)

Capitalize each word.

MailChimp found that capitalizing each word in the subject line lead to a 7% increase in open rate while only capitalizing at least one word lead to a -1% open rate. These numbers are small, but they shouldn’t be overlooked. If you have a very large mailing list, the small percentage points can translate to hundreds or thousands of consumers.

Use an A/B test.

You will likely reach a situation where you have multiple headlines you would like to use, but can’t decide which one is best. You should A/B test them by sending them to segments of your mailing list. Collect some data and then send out the winning headline to the rest of your list.

Make sure to keep as many factors as consistent as possible. For example, if you sent Headline A at 2:00 AM and Headline B at 9:00 AM, you shouldn’t be surprised if there’s a stark difference in open rates.

Using the right headline hacks can exponentially improve your marketing success. You should use MailChimp, Constant Contact, or another email marketing service to send out your emails, track statistics, and watch your numbers grow. You can find more useful marketing tips with our done-for-you service.

5 Incredible Reasons You Need to Market on Pinterest

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Pinterest may not be as popular as Facebook or Instagram, but it still has a lot of potential for any company that wishes to get their brand name out there. Pinterest is an incredibly unique platform that can boost your marketing efforts like never before. Here are 5 facts compiled from all over the internet that will convince you to market on Pinterest.

Pinterest is incredibly popular.

Pinterest’s popularity has been steadily increasing and it now represents a nearly unstoppable force that eclipses other social media websites. Data from Pew Research Center found that, in 2016, 26% of U.S. adults use Pinterest which puts it behind Facebook (68%) and Instagram (28%), but ahead of LinkedIn (25%) and Twitter (21%).

Pinterest claims that it has 150 million monthly active users with 70 million of them from the U.S. and 80 million of them from outside the U.S.

Pinterest is great for sales.

A Shopify study found that people who are referred through products via Pinterest are 10% more likely to make purchases compared to those referred from Facebook or Twitter. Furthermore, the average Pinterest order is $80, which is higher than that of Google, Facebook, Amazon, and several other websites. However, Rich Relevance placed the average order value per session even higher at a whopping $199.16, which easily triumphs over the average orders of $92.27 from Facebook and the measly $58.02 from Twitter.

Additionally, a study from BlogHer found that 53% of BlogHer readers and 47% of U.S. consumers have bought an item based on a recommendation from Pinterest.

Pinterest users have a lot of money to spend.

Why are Pinterest orders so high? Perhaps it’s because many people who use the social media app have very high incomes.

The average Pinterest user is 40 years old and half of them make at least $50K a year. Ten percent of households that use Pinterest make over $125K a year. Clearly, there is a lot of incentive for marketers who want to appeal to potential buyers.

People use Pinterest to decide what to buy.

If there’s anything that would convince you to sell on Pinterest, it would have to be these statistics:

  • 96% of active pinners use the site to gather information and conduct research.
  • 93% of active pinners use the app to plan purchases.
  • 87% of active pinners have bought something because of Pinterest.
  • 72% of active pinners use Pinterest to decide what to purchase offline.
  • 39% of active pinners use it to find out information about new products.

A study from Millward Brown Digital found that active pinners said that Pinterest helps them decide what to buy in these categories:

  • 79% – Food and Ingredients
  • 60% – Home Décor
  • 53% – Clothing and Accessories
  • 51% – Hair and Beauty
  • 47% – Health and Fitness

What does all this mean? People use Pinterest because they are looking for something to buy. It’s like a social media version of a shopping network.

Pinterest is great for marketing towards women.

A surprising 81% of pinners are women and the average female user will make 158 pins. Data from the Pew Research Center found that only 15% of U.S. adult men use Pinterest compared to the 38% of adult U.S. women that use the platform.

Pinterest might be one of the few social media platforms where women dominate making it ideal for beauty and fashion brands. Instagram is also very popular among women, which may suggest that image-based content marketing is great for appealing for a female audience.

Furthermore, data from BlogHer found that 81% of women trust information they read on Pinterest compared to the mere 73% of women that trust Twitter and 67% of women that trust Facebook.

Pinterest is one of the most exciting platforms to reach new audience members and drive sales. Get started by creating a Pinterest account, tracking metrics, and watch the sales roll in. And, if you’d like more access to invaluable online marketing strategies, check out our done-for-you system.

Using Images to Improve Your Content Marketing

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Whether they are inserted into the header or placed within the main body of text, images are an illustration of you contents core idea. Including simple images that relate to as wide an audience as possible will help maximize the work your content can do.

Where Can I Find Photos?

There are a number of places on the web you can find royalty free images that are free to download.  Even more where you can pay to download. The easiest way to find the latest resources is to do a search for “Royalty Free Images.”

No matter where you go for images, it’s vitally important to give proper attribution when required. A good rule of thumb for attribution is to credit the contributor of the image and include the website where you found it, ie: “Photo Courtesy of ABCD from FreePics.com.”

The same goes for a registered trademark or trademarked product. For example, if Nike Swoosh or an actual Nike product is seen in the photo, include a statement like, “Nike, the Nike logo, and Nike Products are trademarks of Nike Inc., registered in the U.S. and internationally.”

Image SEO

According to most experts in the SEO field, Keywords appear to be the end all be all of SEO.  Primary Keywords, secondary Keywords, Google “Keyword” and the list of sources of info will probably go on forever.  With Image SEO the first location to use your primary keyword will be the image filename.

The right filename will let a search engine know what the image is about.  This means if your image is a women’s top in a specific abstract design, the file name shouldn’t be DSC12345.jpg.  Instead, you want to rename it “ann-monique-womens-top-abstract-v.”  This gives the search engine spiders something to grab onto and take back to their part of the web.

Start a file name with a lowercase letter or a number and remove all spaces.  For multiple words, join them with a dash.

Loading times can be crucial for websites to maintain traffic. The faster the site, the easier to visit it. Images can have a huge impact on this.   Standard resolution for a screen image is 72ppi and most web pages won’t need an image to be more than 1000-1200 pixels wide.  To put that into perspective, a typical smart phone camera today will give you an image at 72 ppi but the file will often be over 3000 pixels wide (or more).

There are a few online image editors that work quite well and often don’t cost a thing or have a minimal membership fee with added benefits.  Two are PicMonkey and Pixl.

When uploading your image, you will often be given an option to add “alt text” or “alt tags.” This is also another good place to use your keyword placement.

In most e-commerce catalog pages, the product is shown in a specific place on the page that doesn’t overlap any other image or text.  JPEG images are most commonly used for this.  I’m adding this quick highlight in case a need arises for you to remove the background of a photo.

JPEG images include a visible background showing behind any curves or irregular lines. If you’ve taken the trouble to remove the background of the photo of a product but save it as a JPEG (JPG), you will still be stuck with a background color when you re-open it.

PNGs allow you to make the background transparent so it can be used over any color, texture or other text.  This can be helpful if you decide to show multiple products in one virtual shot but don’t have the means to retake the photo.

GIF images are a much lower quality than JPEGs or PNGs. Best for small decorative images and icons it is doubtful you will have a reason to use them on a product page.   Most often they are used to float basic logos over pages or header graphics since they can be saved with transparent backgrounds, like PNGs.

Even if it takes extra time to find just the right image for a post, the increase in SEO and lead generation make it worth your time.

Monitoring the social media marketing landscape is vital to your success. If you’d like to have access to even more powerful marketing tips, as well as a way to generate conversion-ready Internet marketing prospects each month, click here to learn about our done-for-you system.

 

Using Craigslist to Market Your Business

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From e-commerce websites to furniture wholesalers, small businesses are discovering the marketing capability of Craigslist.org.

If you provide a service or sell wholesale or resale products, Craigslist is a tool to add to your marketing arsenal.  On Craigslist, users know they will find what they are looking for nearby, so they don’t get stuck sifting through ads for service providers that are located on the other side of the country.

Posting on Craigslist does require that you follow their rules.  The site has some general policies as well as specific ones that vary based on the category of your ad.  Failure to follow these will cause your ad to be flagged and removed from view.

Excessive flags could lead your account being closed permanently, so stay up to date on any changes in policy that may occur from time to time.

It is possible to adhere to the rules and still get plenty of engagement with prospective buyers or clients.

If you’ve never considered using Craigslist for marketing, this information may help you decide.

Identify Your Market

The first thing you’ll need to do is determine where you want your ads to be posted. Not all areas are city specific.  A good way to find your target areas is to start by choosing the State you reside in.

When you select a State, you will be given a list of all the Craigslist sites that are in that State.

For example, if you select Florida you will see a list that includes Orlando and Tallahassee but also shows the Treasure Coast, North Central FL, and South Florida with a notation that this option includes separate sections for Miami/Dade, Broward, and Palm Beach Counties.

From there you can determine which area or areas you want to target.

Build Your Ad

Once you’ve found your target areas, you want to develop a posting schedule for each one and create ads that are area specific.

Once upon a time, you could create an entire HTML and CSS coded ad from scratch that coordinated with your Branding. However, the site decided it wanted to focus on keeping a user-friendly option for everyone, not just the tech savvy or paid post designers.

Fortunately, they did improve the design of the basic ad layout, the biggest improvement being room for additional photos.  Where you used to be limited to 6 and then 12 photos, you are now able to include up to 24.  This is a huge advantage if you are selling a product.

Even though Craigslist is designed for the “common man” to easily post ads for sale, as a professional you want to make sure your ad looks as polished as possible.

Here are some easy ways to make sure you look like a business and not someone trying to clean out their garage:

Use High-Quality Photos

This means hiring a photographer or investing in a good camera and not just using the one that came with your smart phone.  Make sure photos are well lit and most importantly, STRAIGHT.

If you choose to take the photos yourself, it would be a good idea to have access to photo editing software like Adobe Photoshop, or creating an account with one of the online photo editors like PicMonkey.com.

Try to Use Headers and Bulleted or Numbered Lists

This makes the ad easier to read and less likely to be skipped by the user.

Since there isn’t a text editor available for posts, you can make headers stand out by capitalizing each word or making them all caps.  To create a bullet list, you’ll need to use a symbol available on your keyboard like the asterisk found over the 8 or a dash.

Now you know that Craigslist is not just for people getting ready to move or looking for romance in the personal ads. If used properly, it can bring in new traffic and leads, introducing you to clients spanning a wide variety of interests and businesses.

For more information and to get up to date guidelines visit Craigslist.org and get started today.

Monitoring the social media marketing landscape is vital to your success. If you’d like to have access to even more powerful marketing tips, as well as a way to generate conversion-ready Internet marketing prospects each month, click here to learn about our done-for-you system.

The Three-Legged Step Stool of Maintaining a Lasting Relationship with Your Customers

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There are three different but equally important aspects of any good relationship and must be the foundation for the rest of the relationship to be built on. Whether it’s a business relationship or a personal one.

Long-term customers can be a great source of repeat business and quality referrals to more potential clients.

If even one of these aspects is missing or weak, it’s unlikely that the other two will be able to support the relationship on their own. They are RESPECT, COMMUNICATION, and TRUST

RESPECT

You may have a flood of customers coming through your door, but if you don’t respect them, they won’t become the long-term clients that lead to long-term success. The best ways to let your customers know you respect them are through your actions.  Show them that you appreciate their business, care about their issues and try to make them feel special.

COMMUNICATION

As with personal relationships, communication is another key component to a good business relationship.  It is amazing how often I am talking to someone, or overhearing someone talk, about problems with their relationship and it comes out that all the issues they have with the other party they are talking about to everyone else BUT the other party.

Contrary to apparent popular belief, a serious relationship does not cause a sudden onset of telepathy.  In a business relationship, the easiest way to find out how you’re doing, or if you may need to adjust some of your practices, is to ask your customers.

Just as a significant other can’t fix something if they don’t know its broken, you won’t be able to either unless they tell you.

Once you’ve established a line of communication, make sure you actually listen to what they are telling you.  Be willing to compromise and adapt your practices to the customer’s needs.  While you may not be able to please everyone, you will be able to improve on your current business model and learn what works best.

TRUST

People screw up, sometimes in a small way, sometimes spectacularly. Some mistakes cannot be forgiven. Most can be IF the work is put in on both sides.

When maintaining a level of trust in business, it isn’t just important to do what you say you are going to, but, if something goes wrong, make sure you handle it in a way that will keep your customers loyalty.

Be honest, this is the fastest way to build a trusting relationship with your customers and to rebuild one if something goes wrong.

If you make a mistake be prepared to explain how and why it happened and the steps you are going to take to fix it. Don’t delay in taking action, the more quickly you address the issue, the sooner it can be resolved. Be sure to be respectful and apologize, your customer will probably be frustrated or angry.  However, a truly loyal customer will understand in the long run that you’re human and these things happen.

A good way to show you are trustworthy is to be yourself. Being genuine makes you more approachable. Whether you are a little eccentric or straight-laced, you can show your customers who you really are as long as you maintain a professional distance and respect their personality as well.

The Step Stool That Keeps Your Relationships Up

So, like a three-legged step stool, each of these primary aspects of a relationship with your customers is equally important. If just one of them fails, the whole relationship can topple over.

Monitoring the social media marketing landscape is vital to your success. If you’d like to have access to even more powerful marketing tips, as well as a way to generate conversion-ready Internet marketing prospects each month, click here to learn about our done-for-you system.

 

Snapchat-The Newest Platform for Ad Targeting

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If you are over the age of 29, you may be asking yourself, “What exactly is Snapchat???”

While you’ve probably heard of it, you may still not know exactly how it works.   And, with most of its users being Millennials and teens, it’s easy to understand why.

Although it’s expanded quite a bit since its initial launch less than 10 years ago, the primary feature of Snapchat is that the pics, messages, and videos sent are temporary. For example, if one user sends another user a photo, upon opening that photo the receiver will only be able to see it for 10 seconds, then it’s gone, the file deleted automatically.

With Snapchat, the phrase, “What happens on the Internet, stays on the Internet…Forever” no longer applies.

Ad Targeting

According to a study done by the Network Advertising Initiative, ad targeting, is said to have 2.7 times more revenue as non-targeted ads.

With ad targeting, ads become more meaningful to users and are often considered to be less intrusive. They also allow businesses show ads only to those likely to use their products or services.

Just like Facebook, Snapchat can be an effective way to target your specific audience. Also, like Facebook, it can be a confusing process for a business to learn.

The Latest Tool for Ad Targeting

Snapchat is most valuable for engaging your target demographic creating interest for your service or product.  Recent research has shown that Snapchat receives almost 4 times more engagement than comparable platforms like Instagram.

Here are some ways you can break into the Snapchat platform and increase your ad targeting.

Launch New Products

You can use Snapchat to launch products as they come available. Like the cosmetic company, NARS did to give its Snapchat followers a look at its newest product line before the release date.

One advantage to using Snapchat for marketing is your ability to create less formal, budget friendly videos. With this feature, you can even let your followers see your business from a more personal point of view.  This can go far in helping you develop a stronger relationship with them in the future.

Leverage Social Influencer Marketing

The use of Influencer Marketing is the practice of creating relationships with the people who can build additional relationships for you in return. Whether the audience is small or large, an influencer can touch consumers via social networks and blogs, in ways your brand may not be able to reach.

Influencer marketing is one of the most effective channels out there today.

By leveraging influencers, you are able to capture a much greater audience since your content will be viewed both by your followers and the followers of your influencers. It’s one of the fastest ways to build your own immense audience.

An additional way to take advantage of influencer marketing is by inviting an influencer to do a takeover of your account. When this happens, you allow them to run your Snapchat account for a pre-determined time period.  During this time, they will post snaps for you.  The well-known rapper Pharrell did this once in partnership with Adidas for one of their promotional events.

Offer Promo Codes

Compared to the other popular Social Media platforms that offer Ad Targeting, Snapchat is still an up-and-coming platform that hasn’t become overly saturated.

And, because of its growing popularity, engagement levels are still considerably greater than many other platforms.  This makes it a good location to scout out new audience members.  Marketers who take advantage of it now can expect much better engagement than those who wait to jump on the band wagon later.

Monitoring the social media marketing landscape is vital to your success. If you’d like to have access to even more powerful marketing tips, as well as a way to generate conversion-ready Internet marketing prospects each month, click here to learn about our done-for-you system.