Getting Google to Notice Your Business
So, One of your primary struggles with online marketing will be getting your product or service
seen by the masses. While there are many ways to do this, but one of the most important will be to
get people to find you online – what happens when someone in your area is looking for what you offer?
Nowadays, they’ll likely take to a popular search engine like Google to find what they’re looking for.
To prepare, there are numerous ways to “trick” search engines into making your website appear higher,
increasing the number of people that are likely to see your business, and thereby use you for
what they need! These tricks are called search engine optimization, or SEO for short.
What is SEO?
Primarily, there are two major forms of marketing. Paid advertising involves, as noted,
the kinds of things that you can pay money for. Google advertising, Facebook advertising,
and paid blog postings are all examples of paid advertising. By following some rules and contributing
money can work to draw people to your website and brand. In contrast, organic marketing refers
to all of the ways that brand visibility can be gained without the need for paying.
SEO is a prime example of this. Instead of using money, SEO is both the technical and creative
knowledge that is used together to bring your website to the top in any search engine.
Confusing? It can be. There are things on your website that contribute. There are things off
of your website that contribute. Both of these things matter.
Go to your favorite search engine and type in the phrase “winter clothes”. What comes up?
How does it come up? Why does this search engine think that these websites are the ones that you
might want to visit? What appears in the first five places? Click to page five – what appears here?
SEO using the tools of the trade to ensure that your website and business is appearing where
people will see it when they make a related search, instead of buried where no one will.
Why is SEO Important?
The internet is here to stay. It’s not going anywhere. As long as it’s around, users will
need to navigate the depths of the web to find the information they need. This is where SEO is useful.
While someone may be able to stumble upon your site through social media or by a link
from another place, most people search targeted phrases to find what they need,
and when you can show that you have what a customer is looking for,
they’re likely to explore your offering.
The more people to your website, the more likely they are to spend their money with you.
But when these customers can’t find your website, you won’t get their business.
So showing search engines when they should show your website to potential
customers is huge for your business success.
How Do Search Engines Work?
The internet is gigantic. There are tons and tons of websites and pages that might
relate to any search result. For anything that someone might want to know, search engines
need to have some awareness that this information exists online and that there’s value for the
person searching for it. Based on the data found on these web pages, engines make an
assessment of whether or not a website is relevant to the user and is popular enough
that the user is likely to want to reach it.
With more research and technology, determining what someone is looking for has been refined.
There are tons of factors that a search engine looks for to determine whether or not a website has
the information a user is looking for. In combination with the technological aspects that trigger
information for search engines, user friendliness and customer interaction make an impact as well.
SEO is constantly changing, and engineers tweak algorithms to refine the imperfect system and
bypass “black hat SEO”, or methods used to unfairly advance websites that would not
otherwise appear highly on search results. Therefore, it’s never a one-time only process!
This introduction to SEO only covers one small part of why this is important to pay attention
to this – we’ll be covering more about SEO to come soon!
Advertising on Instagram
There’s no doubt about it- Instagram is here to stay, and having a presence on
this platform is as essential as those for Facebook or Twitter. As a purely visual representation
of your business, Instagram is perfect for posting pictures, illustrations, and videos related to the regular,
day-to-day life of your brand. In addition to the power of great visual content and a cohesive
hashtagging campaign (we’ve compiled some great tips on getting started on Instagram before…),
you can help increase followers and attention to your brand through Instagram advertising.
Paid advertising may seem intimidating since you need to lay money on the line, but can
ultimately have immense benefits. You’ll see immediate and direct traffic to your site,
target your product to specific audiences that will be likely to make a purchase, and increase
the overall reach of your brand. Starting small isn’t a problem, either. Putting a small amount of
money towards paid search to dip your toe in the water is always better than doing nothing at all.
Instagram Advertising 101
That being said, trying out paid advertising on Instagram is a definite. We’ve created a perfect,
101-guide to help you figure out the advertising platform of Instagram.
Type of Instagram Ads
Instagram offers three different ads on their platforms, all of which are extremely visual-based.
- Photo: A still image that could be branded or simply sponsored
- Video: A video similar to those allowed on the platform
- Carousel: Multiple images with a call-to-action button
Depending on your advertising goal and budget, you’ll be able to choose the right
design for you, based on your goals. For example, carousel ads are best to encourage
a user to complete a specific action, like a purchase, while a well-made
video can help rack up followers.
Determine Your Ideal Targeting
Helping you decide on which Instagram ad type you should be considering is
your target audience. Think deeply about your business and who your ideal clientele is.
Since Instagram is connected with Facebook, you can take both data from existing
followers and connected Facebook accounts to begin targeting. Do you currently
have an email list?
Upload email addresses into Facebook to find people that may like your product, but not your social media accounts.
However, since Instagram is run through Facebook, Instagram ads should be set up through Facebook advertising. This means that you’ll need to have a connected Facebook account to run this data through. How should you do this?
- Create a Facebook business page for your business
- Get a Business Manager account to run ads
- Add your Instagram account details under “Business Settings”
- Connect your Instagram account with your Facebook ads account
- Create campaigns based on targeting!
Be sure to be placing the ads on Instagram rather than Facebook in this setup!
Determine Your Objective
If you’re exploring Instagram advertising, there’s a reason why. While Instagram’s focus is on beautiful imagery, there are ways to use this to your advantage in order to drive a certain goal. Are you sending people to your website? Simply driving awareness? Looking to drive sales? Your creative should match your eventual end goal – this is important as you keep designing in mind.
Create Your Design
Now that you’ve established the type of ad, your objective, and your target audience, you’re ready to begin designing the ad itself! If you have some graphic design expertise, you may want to consider creating your own custom image to post. If not, that’s okay too! You can use your phone’s camera to capture an image that will still rack up the likes and shares on Instagram.
Things you want your ads to be:
- Visually appealing
Things you don’t want your ads to be:
- Low-quality or blurry
- Filled with clutter
- Grammatically incorrect
Importantly, no matter the image or video you ultimately choose to use as your advertisement, it needs to feel organic and authentic. Cliches, stock images, or vague posts won’t resonate and will likely cause viewers to trust your brand less than they would have. In short, make the post 100% yours and the complete embodiment of your business
Facebook Lessons For Your Business
Facebook is a social media and advertising giant, with over 1 billion active users that use the
platform on a regular basis. This is not only a huge number of people but gives you the perfect
opportunity to reach the immediate audience in your community and a larger, global audience as well.
While you may have your own personal Facebook account that you use to provide life updates
and speak with friends and acquaintances, your business Facebook page will have a bit
of a different purpose than your personal one.
- Schedule important posts in advance. There’s a value to posting in real time on Facebook,
but for your own sanity, you can explore means of posting information without needing to
actively be on your Facebook. This is built right into the “post” feature. Instead of “Post”,
choose “Schedule”, and implement a date and time in the future your post should be shared.
This can be helpful during busy weeks when you’re running a promotion,
or simply just want to post a holiday wish.
- Use the “Boost Post” feature for notable posts.
- Boost post is a paid advertising option where you can allocate even a small sum of
money to push the post into other people’s newsfeeds. When used correctly, this can be
a valuable tool for increasing conversions and growing your Facebook following.
We recommend this for informative blog posts and promotions that
you definitely want people to reach!
- Appropriately brand your Facebook page.
- As with any social media account that
you want to filter followers to, you’ll want to be sure that your Facebook page
has identifying information about your business. For businesses, this can be your company
- logo and branded cover photo. If you’re a solopreneur, then consider a professional headshot
and a branded cover image with your logo. Even better, change these images with the
season toconnect with followers.
- Use incentives as a way to get a user to like your page.
- With so many pages on Facebook, how can you convince a user to engage with yours?
- One way to do this is to offer a perk for liking your page, such as offering a discount.
- Consider doing this through email newsletters, or even offering an offer directly on
- your Facebook page. Be careful since anything that is done on Facebook needs to
- abide by their guidelines to prevent your page from being prematurely shut down.
- Videos and images are the best content to be posting.
- Unlike Twitter, which can be text-based, other social media platforms place
- higher value on videos and photographs. In many studies, the highest kind of
- engagement that is seen on these social channels occurs on posts with some other visual
- component included. Videos tend to be better than images for engagement, but only if
- they’re well done! Explore social post options that utilize higher visual quality.
- Refresh your content often.
- One of the biggest mistakes business make is reusing the same images over
and over again without taking new ones. As important as visual content is,
you’ll also be needing to use content that relates, and once someone has seen
your image once, they don’t need to see it again. Connected, using your
Business Insights can really help determine what people connect with –
and use content like this more often.
- Use your cover photo as marketing.
- We’ve mentioned that having engaging and rotating cover photos can help
to convince engagement, but you can take this further. As you rotate your cover photo for
the holidays, seasons, or for a promotion, use the description to include
a link to a relevant page on your website or blog. These links will appear on your follower’s
feeds for more exposure to your page! Or, as the largest and initial image that a user will
see when visiting your page, you can use your cover image to promote events you have happening.
- Be sure to post consistently.
- As the Facebook newsfeed algorithm changes often, it will be important to stay at the top.
You’ll appear higher if people are engaging with your posts, and people will engage when they
see your posts. Unfortunately, posts are not rendered chronologically, meaning that you won’t often
reach all of your followers. This means that you’ll need to post more than once to Facebook –
and we have a handy guide explaining how often you should be posting to social sites.
Even try posting outside of regular business hours to see how that affects your engagement.
- Consider post targeting when you are posting.
- Post targeting segments your followers based on age, gender, location,
or interest and choosing this option will weight your post more
- heavily to these populations. Posting about a local event?
- Targeting those in your hometown may be the be best way to get
your post noticed!
- Your About section is more powerful than you may realize! Your About section is
- a part of your profile where you can clue your potential fans in about what it is that your
- business does and any notable milestones you’d like to promote. You have the option for
- a Short or a Long description, and use these appropriately! This is a great way to tell your
- company’s story, and while images can bring users in, your story can be what makes them stay.
- Don’t post about any and all topics.
- There’s a reason you have a different personal page and Business page.
Your Business page should stay on topic about your Brand and related information
about your field. Your personal page is where you can post life updates, your random thoughts,
or anything outside of what’s relevant for your business page. Staying on track is essential!
Facebook has some important options that are available for business owners and those that should be considered! If you create a business page, you’ll have access to the business, analytics platform that
provides important insights on the kinds of people visiting your page, when they’re visiting it, and what
kind of posts they’re liking. This is the perfect way to take your business’s social media to the next level!
Twitter Lessons For Your Business
We recently posted a blog about the top tips for utilizing Instagram, and we’re continuing
this social media series with many of the top platforms that businesses use to engage their current
customers and appeal to new ones. Twitter is great for up-to-the-minute updates, and information
on Twitter moves fast! Many businesses choose to engage in conversations on this platform, both with businesses and individuals, all within 140 characters. Even within those limit constraints, Twitter can be
valuable for the spreading information and connecting with your audience. But while Twitter can be
second-nature for some, it’s a little more complicated for others. We’re here to help break Twitter down
a little further for you and help to ensure that you’re using this platform the most effectively for your needs!
- Choose a Twitter handle that represents your business.
- Your Twitter handle and profile image are the two things that will consistently appear
when you interact with customers and other businesses, and these need to accurately
represent you! Your Twitter handle, most effectively, should be your name or something
notable about what you’re doing. Consider this! It’s difficult to change your handle
once you’ve chosen one, and other users will get used to your name being what it is.
- Take the time to put together your profile.
Nothing is less appealing to other Twitter users than an uncompleted profile
without a profile picture, cover header, or bio. After choosing your Twitter name,
fill out your bio with a little about your brand and a link to your website or other social media channels.
Use your logo design as your profile image, and a branded social header that relates to what you do.
Your visuals will likely convey a lot of information by a quick look so be sure these
are accurate representations! Side note: if you need a logo or branded social cover,
Tailor Brands can help you out!
- Don’t be afraid to follow people and follow back.
- Following related businesses and important people in your space is important for
keeping abreast of news and joining in conversations. Why would you want to do this?
One of the main tips for attracting followers and customers is by becoming an authority
in your field – and when you’re the person who knows what’s happening and having
influential conversations with important people will place you as your authority in your field,
or at least someone very interesting to follow.
- Tweeting links? There’s a proper way to do it.
- If you’re tweeting out links to articles,
there’s a proper way to do it.
- If it’s your tweet, be sure to include your message with the link and an appropriate hashtag to draw
- people to the tweet. Adding commentary brings your own personality to the table and prevents your
- Twitter from being simply a repository for information – and even if you quote or retweet from another
- source, be sure to add a little bit of your own opinion. Further, don’t only tweet articles from the same source. Having a myriad of people that you follow can help ensure that your information stays dynamic.
- Engage in conversations by using trending hashtags or directly engaging users.
The trending hashtags bar can clue you into some of the things that people in your area and
- around the world are currently speaking about. Using these hashtags can involve your account in
- the conversation as well. Or, directly tweet at users who are speaking about this topic to directly
- engage them and get their opinion on what’s happening.
- Don’t over-tweet unimportant details.
- It is easy for a Twitter account to become a dumping ground for personal or mundane thoughts.
- Unless you’re using humor to shed light on the mundane, your daily tasks may be a lot less interesting
- to others. Every once in awhile, this works great to humanize your account, but excessive commentary
- on your day-to-day life will most likely miss the mark.
- Use lists to organize your feed once
you start following a lot of people.
- Twitter lists allow you to segment your audience and create multiple, smaller feeds that can
- make engagement a little easier for you, or differentiate business accounts and personal accounts.
You stream will be easier to read, and you’ll be able to engage as needed!
- Schedule tweets in advance to reduce your burden.
We’ve posted blogs about the recommended number of times that you should be posting to
Twitter per day, and this can be overwhelming! One way to ease your Twitter burden or maintain
a presence when you’re busy is by posting Tweets in advance using tools such as Buffer.
This is perfect for |throwbacks, old articles or news you think you should revisit, and anything that
isn’t necessarily time-specific. You can even use this advanced method to post information
- about sales and promotions you know are coming.
- Avoid some recommended,
but spammy methods to garner followers.
- There are a lot of recommended ways to help garner followers that some social media
experts will claim are foolproof but can actually be spammy and more frustrating.
Examples include sending automatic direct messages to those that follow your account,
using more than three hashtags per tweet, directly tweeting at people with a direct link
to your website or storefront, favoriting or retweeting every tweet that you’re
mentioned in, and follow – unfollow strategies.
- Don’t forget about the power of images for Twitter.
- People respond to visuals on social media, and using pictures and videos can help
you to engage with others. There is a lot of evidence showing the ways that images
help social accounts succeed, and a new visual angle will help your engagement!
Twitter is secondary to some and involves work for others, but regardless of what your
skill set may be, the above tips are important to ensure continual engagement on the
platform. Get it all out in your 140 characters! Happy tweeting.