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Amber Henning

Google Ads or Social Media Ads – Which is Right for my Business?

It seems like there are so many different options in digital marketing, and for those in business sometimes the information just seems overwhelming and confusing. That doesn’t mean you should avoid digital marketing altogether, on the contrary, internet marketing can provide great exposure for your business at a cost that is generally more reasonable than traditional marketing—and what’s best it works.

What is Your Business & Who is Your Customer?

The very first step is to define your business and your potential client before you hone in on a strategy that will work for you. For instance, if you work in a service industry such as plumbing or appliance repairs, your strategy might look completely different from someone who is selling a specific good. Determine what you are selling and more importantly how your current or potential client come to purchase—then you will have a better idea of how to strategize moving forward.

Digital Advertising Options

While there are many options for digital advertising online, the majority of businesses usually participate in one (or both) of the two big options– Google and Facebook.

Google Advertising

Google is continually growing and changing, but what they always offer are robust options for those who are looking to market online. Even with all the options, most clients tend to rely on two main forms of Google ads.

Google Adwords – Search engine marketing is undeniably effective because it allows you the most important potential client targeting available. When your future consumer is looking for the goods or services you provide, their first stop is almost always Google. There are over 3.5 billion searches on Google each day—and that is activity that should not, and really cannot be ignored. Google Adwords allows you to capitalize on those searches and on that very moment when your potential customer is looking for your product or services by listing your business at the top their search engine result pages.

As a business, you only pay for the ad placement Google provides when someone clicks– which is why this strategy is aptly named “Pay-Per-Click.” Depending on the business you are in, there may be high competition for placement on search engines, which drives up the cost per click.

Google Display Ads – Display ads provide another avenue to advertise your business. You’ve all seen banner ads when browsing—and often you question “How did they know?”. And the while the long answers is complicated, the short answer is: Google. This type of display advertising is generally referred to as remarketing, and it allows marketers to send ads to you based on your search engine or browsing history. It’s sort of a way for a business to say, “Hey! Remember us! We’re still here, come check us out again!”

However, display advertising doesn’t end there. Google has a large family of advertisers, allowing marketers and business owners to place ads on specific websites that your customers are likely to visit. With the large network of advertising and both arms of a display campaign, your company can be everywhere your potential customer is and keep you front of mind at the most opportune times.

Facebook Ads

Social media advertising, specifically on Facebook and Instagram, is a different strategy altogether. Google enables you to introduce your company to a client base that needs your goods or services, however Facebook allows you to introduce your good or service, to someone who may not have realized they needed you in the first place– giving you access to a new potential clientele base that you may have not even known existed.

Unlike other traditional advertising, Facebook allows you to target, rather specifically, to the people who are your most likely customer. While geographical targeting is a feature of most forms of advertising, Facebook goes a step further. Looking to market to parents or mothers? No problem. Want to target to homeowners? Done. Have a product great for outdoorsy folks? Social media can cover that too. You can target so many different interests and determining factors that your ad, and your budget, will me far more effective and allow you a great return on your investment.

 

Which Advertising Platform is Right For Me?

First, they might both be beneficial to your marketing efforts, so take the time to determine your ultimate objective. If you’re in a service industry goal is getting more phones to ring, Google search engine ads is a great way to go. Plumber marketing, for instance, is a great example. When someone needs a plumber’s services, they generally need them immediately and go straight to Google—so a PPC campaign is a great strategy. A company selling a specific product, however, knows branding and loyalty are important, so utilizing social media advertising can help them stay relevant with their client base.

However, in most cases, companies often succeed using a combination of both strategies. It’s also important to consider your budget and competition– cost per click can go up depending on the competition in the field, so do your proper research, or rely on a digital marketing company, that can help you with the process.

Getting Started

Though we haven’t mentioned it just yet, no digital marketing is going to be effective if you don’t have a quality website in place. The website must be up to date and work well with different devices and operating systems. Your site should instill authority and give the potential client a feeling of trust. The website also needs to easily convey contact information—in varying formats, email, phone, contact forms, etc. Landing pages are also an important factor—if you are running an ad for a sale on a coffee mug, but the ad just dumps you on a main page, you’re going to navigate away from that product and never look back. Making sure your ads link to the right pages is of huge importance.

Once you have a webpage that will help encourage new business, then you can begin creating and running ads. A lot of businesses opt to hire professional marketing help to manage these ads, which can often save time and create a much stronger and more effective campaign.

However, outsourcing is not an option for all businesses, and both Google and Facebook are aware of that. Both provide excellent training courses, customer support, and tutorials that can help people navigate the process.

In the end, no matter what strategy you adopt, the results you experience with effective digital marketing are hard to ignore. Analytics and tracking capabilities enable you to see results and utilize that data to reach your overall marketing goal. Don’t be overwhelmed, and don’t be afraid—and if you are, contact us today.

Three Tips for Creating a Great Online Reputation for Your Plumbing Business

In today’s digitally focused world, a business’s online reputation is of utmost importance. Before doing business with a company, almost every customer will go online to learn more about their rates, services and, yes, their customer reviews.

An online reputation is especially important in the plumbing industry. After all, people will be letting workers into their homes to repair vital and expensive pieces of equipment. They want to make sure that the workers are clean and respectful, and that work will be completed successfully and fairly.

There are several things you can do to maintain a good reputation in the plumbing industry. The first of these is to build a strong social media presence.

Social Media

Many people are on social media today. Being present on social media will help people to find your business. Establishing the right kind of profiles will also let your customers know you are trustworthy, credible and have good standing in the industry.

Start by using professional photos that feature your workers and the people behind your company. When people can attach a face to a product, it will make the brand seem more personable and relatable. A great company story can also increase engagement and allow consumers to make a personal connection.

Follow up by engaging in conversations with your customers. Ask for their opinions and respond to their questions and comments. This will show an extra level of customer care.

Post regularly to stay present in the public eye and show that your company is on top of things. Share pictures of jobs that have been completed successfully, and your workers interacting with customers. Post informative blogs on your website and share links on your social media accounts.

Managing Reviews

As much as we would all like to avoid bad reviews, they are likely to occur in any line of business. Sometimes mistakes are made or sometimes you are dealing with a customer that is just having a bad day. Either way, it’s important not to dwell on these mistakes, but to deal with them effectively.

Here are some tips on how to deal with a bad review:

Respond promptly: Never let a review go unanswered. Respond promptly. If you wait too long, your customer may get more upset and the issue could escalate.

Be Polite and Professional: When dealing with a bad review, it’s important not to take things personally. Stay polite and professional and avoid being defensive and insulting. If your communication escalates into an argument, it will look bad for everyone involved.

Take the Matter Offline: It is likely that, for customer complaints to resolve, action will eventually have to be taken offline. You may have to send your customer a coupon or exchange to make things right. If this is the case, be sure to mention that in your online communication so those following the thread will know things are being handled on another level.

Be sure to respond to good reviews as well! Let customers who take the time to write something positive about you know that they are appreciated.

Integrate Reviews on Your Website

You can also use your website to help build your online reputation. The best way to do this is to include customer testimonials in your content. You can also include links to 3rd party reviews that appear on sites like Yelp and Google in the footer of your website. Including these links and testimonials will benefit your business in the following ways:

Conversion Rate Optimization: Customers that see positive customer reviews will be more likely to use your business.

Ethical Link Building: Having quality embedded links on your site can help increase your search engine visibility. The links you include to third party sites on your page can work as quality links while showing your company in the best light.

Rich Snippet Generation: If you use structured data, your reviews will be displayed as part of your Google search results.

SEO: Well reviewed companies are likely to rank higher on search engines.

If you are a plumbing business owner, you know how much your business means to you. Reputation management is vital in helping your company to grow and continue to move forward.  Be sure to do what you can to show your business in the best light, so you can keep those pipes clear for years to come!

Digital Marketing Terms to Know

Library

Digital Marketing & Web Development Glossary

You’ve finally decided to take the plunge into digital marketing and immediately you are hit with words and concepts that may seem slightly foreign to you. Fear not, the tech world and the marketing world are working together more and more every day, and digital marketers, like Social Eyes Marketing, have the tools not only to help you succeed online, but to help you understand how you are doing it.

If you are totally new to digital marketing and website development this handy guide may serve to answer some questions and help you understand what those tech people are talking about.

 

A

A/B Testing –  For digital ad campaigns, an A/B test allows marketers to determine what will help an ad perform more efficiently. A traditional A/B test will run two ads simultaneously and measure their effectiveness and response from the audience to determine what method is better received with a specified target audience.

ALT Attribute/Tag – The ALT text will be displayed inside the image placeholder while the page is loading and it contributed to overall optimization of a site for search engines performance.

Analytics – Statistics gathered about website users and how they interact with the website they are on. Analytics can reveal such information as how they got to your site, how many people are on your site, how long they browse, or any specific actions they may take on your website as well.

 

B

Browser –  The software that users implement to navigate the World Wide Web. Chrome, Internet Explorer, and Firefox are all examples of browsers.

 

C

Call to Action (CTA) –  A call to actions is text or an image within an ad that encourages the user to take action, such as “Call Now,” “Learn More,” or “Sign Up Today.”

Clickthrough Rate (CTR) –  A percentage that relates to the amount of times an ad was seen (impression) and how often it was clicked on.

Content Management System (CMS) – An application that enables the building and on-going modification of website content with a simple to use interface that supports multiple users. WordPress is the CMS Social Eyes uses for all their clients’ sites.

Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) – CSS is the code that developers use to design the look and overall feel of your website. The CSS sets styles for fonts, images, menu, colors and other visual elements.

 

D

Domain – The web address that is entered in to a browser when a user wants to visit a specific site. Our domain is getsocialeyes.com.

Domain Authority – A number based on a 100 point scale that determine how much strength your website has which contributes to how well it will rank on search engine results pages. The higher the domain authority, the higher search engine will rank your site organically.

Display Advertising – In digital advertising, display ads are graphic ads that are shown on a webpage. They can be graphics or video and encourage the user to click on them to learn more.

 

F

Favicon – A small icon image, usually a logo or variation, that appears in the title bar or browser tab, as well as with bookmarks.

Frequency –  The amount of times an ad is shown to the same consumer during an ad campaign.

 

H

Hosting – Hosting refers to the web servers where your website files are stored and maintained in order to be on the World Wide Web.

HTML – Hypertext Markup Language is the code that is used to build web pages. It is more frequently used in conjunction with other code languages, such as CSS and JavaScript.

 

I

Impressions – The number of times an ad is shown to potential customers or clients.

 

K

Keyword –  Specific words and phrases that a consumer or client might be likely to use in searching for products or services. Keywords are specifically chosen by businesses and advertisers to enable their ad to show up in specific search engine results.

 

L

Landing Page –  The web page users “land” on after they click on a display ad or a paid search ad.

 

M

Meta Tag – An HTML tag that stores information about a web page. They provide information about a website and its content to sort websites and display the most relevant information on a search engine result page.

 

N

Navigation – Often navigation refers to simply the menu which contains the links within site, more broadly however it just denotes the way a user can “navigate” the page. Often navigation is also included at the bottom of a webpage as well.

 

O

Organic – Search results that are organic are ones that appear in search engine results naturally based on their determined relevance, as opposed to paid searches, which provide non-organic links via the placement of paid search engine results.

 

P

Page Authority – A number based on a 100 point scale that determine how much strength a page in your website has in relation to how it will rank on search engine results pages. Page authority refers to the specific page, while domain authority refers to the whole site under the domain.

Pay Per Click (PPC) –  Pay Per Click refers to the pricing model for digital advertising where advertisers pay based on the number of clicks a link or ad receives.

 

R

Reach –  The total amount of users who see your ad.

Remarketing –  Showing ads to people who have already visited your site, encouraging them to reconsider your products or services and revisit your page.

Responsive Design – A website with a responsive design will easily adjusts to the screen it is being viewed on no matter what the device the user is on. This is in contrast to adaptive design where there are several different designs to handle the change among devices.

Return on Investment (ROI) – ROI measures the amount of return, or profit, on an investment in relation to the cost of the investment.

 

S

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) – Search engine optimization is the process that helps search engine understand the information that is on your website in order to rank your site higher and more relevantly on search engine result pages. This is the process to getting you to the first page of search results and in a place more likely to be seen by potential customers and clients.

SERP – Search engine results page.

Slider – A “slide show” banner of images or videos that is usually placed on the homepage of a website.

Social Advertising – Running a paid ad campaign on a social media platform, such as Facebook or LinkedIn.

 

T

Targeting –  Targeting is a specific way to identify your most likely customer based on their various attributes.

Behavioral Targeting focuses their efforts on identifying consumers based on their previous online behavior, such as searches, websites visited and online purchases.

Geographic Targeting helps you select an audience for your ad campaign based on geographical identifiers like zip codes, regions, cities, states and countries.

Contextual Targeting is about selecting audiences based on the type of content they are viewing based on the text that is on the website they are visiting.

 

W

WordPress – Web-based, open-source content management system designed to make accessing the site easy for all users.

LinkedIn is Your New Business Card: 5 Tips for Creating an Effective Profile

At this point, most businesses have realized that a social media presence is absolutely necessary in the new world of digital marketing. Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest—these have all become popular avenues for communicating with potential customers, as well as your loyal following. Even so, LinkedIn, one of the most powerful networking tools in social media, is often over looked as a business marketing tool. Sure people realize their can further their personal brand, look for a job, maybe make a few connections, but as a whole the LinkedIn world is often underutilized, and for many businesses this could be a costly oversight.

So I know, you might be thinking “I want to promote my business, not myself, so LinkedIn isn’t right for me.” However, in the age of digital media, your personal brand is almost as important as your business brand, and in some cases they can become synonymous with each other. Meaning your LinkedIn profile may have more power than you originally thought. LinkedIn is more than just social media, it is a resume, a business card, a personal branding tool, that is easy to use and right at your fingertips.

Steps to LinkedIn Success

Even if you already have a LinkedIn Account, you might not be using it to its full capability. If you’re starting from scratch or making a new profile, these steps will propel your profile to the top of the pile.

  1. Finish Your Profile

The drudgery of these social media set up routine can be a daunting, especially when you are asked specific questions about your job history, volunteer experience, and so on. However, a fully completed profile is essential to LinkedIn success. According to LinkedIn, those with completed profiles are 40% more likely to receive business, as those whose profiles are incomplete. To have a completed, “all-star” LinkedIn profile you will need to have the following:

  • Your current position, don’t forget the description
  • The industry you work in and your current location
  • Educational history
  • At least two of your past positions
  • At least three skills
  • At least 50 connections
  1. Take a Great Headshot

The importance of a professional headshot is increasing as the opportunities for creating personal brands becomes more prevalent. Now, not everyone likes to have their picture taken, but in the digital age allowing people to put a face with your name instills trust in you and the business you are running. So buck up and get in front of the camera.

A few tips for a great headshot:

  • Use a Bright Background – When you are a small thumbnail on a screen full of other faces, brighter backgrounds stand out.
  • Integrate Industry Specific Elements – If you can, also consider using some key identifier in your image. For instance, if you are in construction, an image of you wearing a hardhat tells potential connections your industry in the blink of an eye. Use your best judgment on whether or not this tip would apply well to your industry.
  • Use the Same Headshot Across All Social Media Platforms – Using the same, identifiable image makes it easy for your potential connections to recognize you, meaning your face and name will become much easier for them to remember and trust.
  1. Beef Up Your Headline

Your headline may be the only thing anyone reads on your profile other than you name. So it’s in your best interest to make it good.

  • Use Key Words – Consider key words that might lead potential connections to you. If you are in cosmetology, you might include Hairdresser, Stylist, and Make-up Artist all in your headline.
  • Be Local – According to Social Media Today, if you include your city in your headline your profile will stand out up to 23 times more than someone who doesn’t specify their location. If applicable, add your region or city to encourage those local connections and hopefully gain more exposure and business in your area.
  1. Set a Great Background Photo

The background photo gives you a lot of space to incorporate your brand and industry. Don’t be afraid to use logos or taglines in this images, however even just images related to your industry can be a huge benefit. If your business is highly reliant on local business, consider using a local picture or identifier so that your potential connections know they have found someone in an area that is related to them. The background image for LinkedIn should be 1400 x 425 pixels and in JPG, PNG, or GIF format.

  1. Communicate with Your Connections

  • Send Personal Messages – Often people get so tied up in trying to get more connections on LinkedIn, they lose that personal touch. When you make a new connection, always send a personal message. This encourages deeper engagement, even if you don’t know the person terribly well, or it has been years since you have worked with them, this personal touch reminds them of why they wanted to connect with you in the first place.
  • Endorse Skills – If you can, endorse the skills of the people you connect with. This usually spur them to do the same for you.
  • Congratulate Your Colleagues – LinkedIn is great about informing you when one of your connections starts a new job, has a work anniversary, etc. Click one button and you can like or send a message to your connections to acknowledge their professional milestones. Take the opportunity to congratulate them by adding your own personal touch to these messages, your connections will notice.
  • Join Groups and Engage – Joining groups is a great way to get new connections in your area or your industry. Start conversations, comment on others, and get yourself a more notable online presence.

 

It wasn’t that long ago, that networking for your business meant you had a drawer full of business cards and a Rolodex full of contacts, but in the digital age networking looks a little different. LinkedIn can replace that drawer full of business cards and if you harness its power it can make far more impact than your business card ever could.