Social Media Marketing

Build Your Brand with Instagram

By on February 9, 2019
Build Your Brand with Instagram

Instagram is not just a social media platform where you share pictures of your dinner it is a powerful tool in your business marketing arsenal.  Brands like Kylie Cosmetics built their business around Instagram and their accounts generate millions of dollar a year in revenue.  Instagram has more than 200 million active users, and if you want to build your brand with Instagram you need to learn how to make it work for you.  Let’s look at how you can build some real engagement.

Using Hashtags Properly

Using your business name as a hashtag is great but that is only the beginning.  You also want to use hashtags for events, contests promotions, sales or product launches.  There are a couple of different brands that do this really well.  Relevant hashtags help you show up higher on Instagram searches and helps you to build followers.

Be Creative

Instagram is a visual platform so use very high quality creative images and don’t overlook how important your caption can be.  You want to put a call to action in your caption, it could be anything from  “tag a friend who” or “double tap if”.  Put the questions right at the beginning so that everyone can see them.

Use your posts as a chance to tell your story be that about yourself, your team or your products themselves.  Take advantage of the story feature on IG and tell the story behind your business.  Instagram is about showing your authentic self so make sure that everything you post is genuine.

What’s Happening Near You

Do you run a local business?  Then you might want to see what is happening in your local community and getting active there.  Instagram has a places tab that is completely overlooked by most business accounts.  See what is geotagged for the city you’re in, then you want to comment and like some of their posts.  Emojis are your friend and you should use them often.  You want this to be the beginning of a genuine interaction.

If you are a fitness trainer for instance, the you may want to check out local health food stores and their accounts.  Interact on pages of local gyms or sports pages.  Once you make them aware of you on Instagram then you might want to start following their accounts.

There are plenty of services out there that will offer to build your Instagram accounts organically, however you need to be wary when doing that.  Most will use software that is prohibited by Instagram and can result in you getting your account banned.

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Email Marketing

Making Email Marketing Work in 2019

By on February 6, 2019

Late last year Europe introduced the general data protection regulation or GDPR meant to curb the amount of spam that people receive in their email accounts.  That left the marketing community wondering if email marketing was still a viable tool for their businesses. Yes it is a viable tool but making email marketing work in 2019 is a little different than it used to be.

Stay Compliant

Privacy is a huge concern today particularly when it comes to marketing.  You have to be careful how you use the data that you collect.  It make be time to update your privacy policy to one that is GDPR compliant, even if Europe isn’t where the bulk of your business comes from.

Make Sure Your Emails are Mobile Friendly

Most people today read email on their phone rather than on a desk top.  Always preview your email first on a mobile device or with a free tool like  It will show you exactly what your email looks like on a phone or a tablet.  The same thing applies to different free email services, what looks great on Gmail may not look so great on Outlook.

Don’t Use HTML

HTML allows you to change the look of your email but if you make a mistake it is totally ruined. Some email providers will mark your email as spam if they detect HTML in the body.  If you insist on using HTML then make sure you test it before you send it to your list.

Typos and Other Mistakes

A typo is not the end of the world, they happen but sending someone to the wrong link is a mistake that will cost you money.  Always double check your email to make sure that everything in there is not only spelled correctly but that your links are going to the right place.  Sending out two or three emails because you made a mistake is a good way to kill your list.

Make the Unsubscribe Button Easy to Find

If someone doesn’t want to receive your emails any longer then let them remove themselves from your list.  Make it easy to find otherwise they will start marking your emails as spam and that will get you into trouble.

Don’t Just Sell

If every email you send is a sales letter people are going to get sick of them pretty quick.  Send out newsletter about what is new in your niche, solve a problem for them, tell a story but don’t make every letter salesy.

Email marketing still offers a tremendous ROI if you handle it smartly.  Prospects may get half a dozen or more of your emails before they decide to buy something from you.  Email marketing alongside a good sales funnel can do tremendous things for your business.

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SEO for Service Businesses

By on February 4, 2019
SEO for Service Businesses

It is not just big companies that take advantage of everything that SEO can do for sales.  Even if you only deal in a local area consumers still check with Google before the make a purchase or to look for a product or service that they need.  If you want to attract new customers then you need to be at the top of the search results page.  SEO for service business is just as important as it is for any other business, here is how you can improve your rankings.

Start with Your Website

Does your website clearly state what you do and the geographical area that you serve?  You need to include the area you work from clearly on the very front page not just on your contact page.  You want people who land on your page to know that you’re in their service area.  Create schema for your site that includes the address.

Google My Business

If you don’t have your GMB page set up then you need to do so right away.  Your Google My Business page is what you need to get your business shown on Google Maps, it can also help you show up higher in the local search results pages.  Google has come a long way and they are pretty good at showing location specific results.  Type in any service business such as “dentist near me” and you will see plenty of dentists right around the corner.  The more competitive the market is means it is even more important for you to be there in the results page.  Google My Business is free and you can add all of the information about your business along with photos, the more information you include the better.

Local Directory Citations

These are online directories, some are industry specific or based on geographic location, these are websites like Yelp, YP and Angie’s List.  You only have to add your business to these directories once however you do need to make sure that all information on these sites is accurate and up to date.  You want to play close attention to your NAP or name, address and phone number.  Here are some of the directories you want to pay attention to.

Encourage Reviews

Reviews are crucial to your business success it is your past customers endorsing your business.  You can certainly ask your previous customers to leave you a review, but if you try and add fake reviews it is a sure fire way to get penalized.  Include a link for reviews in all of your marketing materials.

If you want to really boost your rankings then you want to work with an SEO agency to help you climb in the rankings.

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Affiliate Marketing

Choosing the Right Affiliate Offer

By on January 29, 2019
Choosing the Right Affiliate Offer

If you want to make money at affiliate marketing then the first step is finding the right products to promote.  The last thing you want to do is waste your time and money marketing products that don’t pay or that nobody wants.  There are thousands of affiliate products out there, so how do you choose one that will work for  you?  Choosing the right affiliate offer means doing your research ahead of time, here are some of the things to look at when comparing offers.

What Does it Pay

There are tons of affiliate programs and they all come with different levels of commission.  They can be broken down into two basic categories, one time commissions or recurring payouts.  Recurring is always better, that means for the length of time the customer has the product you will get paid.  One time commissions can be okay if the percentage is high enough.

Do You Get Paid on Upsells

Some affiliate offers pay you on everything they sell a customer.  So if the customer buys more than the original product you will get paid a commission on all of it.  That means more money in your pocket.  Be wary though some companies don’t offer upsells, back end offers or one time offers.  Look into the fine print of the affiliate agreement.

Is it a Good Product?

There is a lot of junk on the internet so be cautious in the affiliate offers you promote.  Check the landing pages for the product and make sure it looks good and will convert the traffic you send.  Will the customers you refer get their money’s worth?  The last thing you need are a bunch of chargebacks and customer complaints on the offers that you promote.

Can You Sell the Product?

Most affiliate market places will give you pretty in depth stats on the products that you can promote.  They will show you which products have been selling well, the average cost per click, which products are new and a great deal of information.  You want to take the time and look closely at these numbers it will show you which products are worth your time and which are not.

Do they Offer Promotional Materials?

Companies that are serious about selling their products will have promotional material available for their affiliates.  That could be anything from an email sequence to graphics for you to use.  Find out what is available to help make your campaigns a success.

Affiliate marketing isn’t easy but once you get the fundamentals down then you can earn a decent income from affiliate marketing.

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