Why your digital marketing should be just another system in your business

I'm sure you've heard it a thousand times. Find more ways to create systems in your business. A system within a business can do a few things, including:

  1. Creating efficiency
  2. Giving you an ability to scale
  3. Giving you more free time. The most precious of all resources.

It's easier to create more money through sales & marketing than it is to create more time. It's near impossible to put more time in your day without the use of systems. Think about your accounting, payroll & HR. The list goes on. All the gurus out there talk about how a system can free you up and put fuel in your business to grow. Why does no-one ever talk about it when it comes to marketing? Think about the manual time you put into not only the acquisition of new customers, but also the retention and cultivation of your existing customer base. The investment of time takes you away from critical components of your business you can focus on to grow. Most people think marketing their business is hard. They find it difficult to use something that is going to consistently deliver results over and over again. This is the standard thinking.

When it comes to digital marketing you have an advantage when it comes to building a system that can consistently generate results. You can not only implement marketing strategies that drive acquisition, but you are also able to test and scale what you do with relative ease.

I know what you're saying. Where the hell do I start? I don't expect everyone out there to be an expert at digital marketing and have the tools and capabilities to setup a system that will deliver successful results. What you can do is start to think about your marketing strategically.

Think about how marketing can sit alongside the other critical functions in your business. It's usually the last place you spend money and you normally only start to be aggressive when you need more customers or sales are drying up.  Money is always a factor, but uncertainty around where to turn plays a big part. You don't need to spend a fortune. In fact setting up a system can lower ongoing marketing costs and increase the "effectiveness" of everything you do to acquire new customers. No marketing is certain, however you can setup a framework for success & you can track dollars and cents in black and white.

To build a system for your digital marketing that aligns to your overall business strategy we recommend doing the following:

It's about money right? Can you generate a return?

We've run a few campaigns in our time and the #1 thing we hear from clients are things like:

"I've tried hundreds of different providers, ads and strategies all with the same outcome. This stuff doesn't work"

"It's so expensive and I ended up throwing money down the drain"

"I've really got no idea what they are actually doing every month"

We get it! This industry has some cowboys and typically most people get burned at least once or twice before they stumble onto someone that knows what they are talking about. What I tell clients is that you have the power in these discussions. You don't need to know anything about marketing. You run a business and if it's a somewhat successful one you normally know your numbers or someone inside your business does. Does it make sense financially to do it this way? Can you show me a return on investment? How do I monitor it and can you do it for me? That's all you need to ask. If they can't you need to be asking the question as to why.

Think about it logically. If you spend $1000 per month and it generates $10,000 worth of new business will you be happy. Find the number you're happy with and if you can't start there straight away build to it. Forecast your spend v return and think about the long term play with your marketing. Return on investment can be the biggest part of your system. Understanding the numbers and tracking outcomes means you are better informed to make decisions for the benefit of your business.

The biggest audience isn't always the best

People always fall for this trap. We are going to drive an extra 1,000 visitors to your website every month. What do you think (for those that haven't been burned before)? Wow, I can't believe this many people are going to see me and my business. This is going to work for sure. We need to get ready for the phone to be ringing off the hook. What happens? Usually nothing, because unfortunately it's not always the biggest audience that yields the best results. Before you start thinking about driving thousands of people to your website ask yourself these questions:

  1. I'm marketing my business. Are people going to be enticed to contact me and how do I differ from my competitors? What is my marketing hook?
  2. Have I questioned this audience and how they fit into the picture of my ideal customer? 5 high quality leads is much better than 20 average ones.
  3. How can you "funnel" buyers to where you want them to go

Some critical things you can implement as part of a system here are developing buyer personas, landing pages integrated into your website, the development of marketing sales funnels & the implementation of direct sales copy. Step back from looking at driving a huge audience and think about how you can implement strategy into your digital marketing to deliver consistent results. Sometimes you can pay a few thousand dollars and have a successful advertising campaign. Is it something that will work long term? What about the next time it doesn't work? What will you do?

Automation creates efficiency and helps you scale

At this stage you may be starting to understand that I don't want you to be an expert. I want you to have the right information to make meaningful decisions that drive bottom line outcomes for your business. There is no other reason you should be marketing other than to drive sales and new customers. If you know your ROI and your comfortable with what you're going to be spending when marketing your business the next stage is to implement strategy into your marketing. Here we are talking about your offer, hooks, buyer personas, copywriting, landing pages, email & things like conversion optimisation. This is what you need experts for. Remember, you don't need someone who claims to be the best at driving you traffic. You need solid, sound and strategic planning for your marketing. Once you have this foundation this is where a system can really boost your ROI & your business growth.

Automation within your business holds the key to everything. The less hands that touch a problem or a process the better the outcome is for you. It's going to cost you less and put time and dollars into your back pocket. Automating leads, emails, marketing optimisation, funnels and more can give you the capability to spend more dollars on efficient traffic driver services and give you a meaningful base from which you can scale your marketing investment. Think back to your return on investment. As your system starts to automate your marketing you can track your ROI and grow much easier.

I'm a big believer in systems to achieve freedom within your business. Marketing is just another component of your business that you can automate as part of a system to lower ongoing costs & drive better outcomes. Think about if you have a digital marketing system in place and the confidence you will have as you start to engage people who sell supposed "digital marketing services". When you start throwing out things like ROI, automation and a digital marketing system you have in place, it's more than likely that over half of them will run away. They are looking for the quick win and the easy target. A small portion will understand but will try and force you to do it their way, while a select few will be on the same page as you.

If you run multiple systems in your business you will see the benefit of one for digital marketing. If you don't see the value what I would recommend is taking to time to really audit the marketing you're currently doing or thinking about doing. Become critical when you assess the spend v return. What things are being done that could save you money by being automated & integrated into your website. I'm sure there is a lot of them. Hopefully this has given you some tools you can use to take back to your marketing plan. If you need some help you can always request one of our free consultations together with an expert 12 months ROI digital marketing forecast here.


What are the most common search engine optimisation problems your business can face

Search engine marketing requires an extensive knowledge of search engine optimisation guidelines and best practices – which are subject to constant changes – along with a lot of your time and budget to get the right mix for your business.

We’ve prepared the most common search engine marketing problems your business can face, so you can avoid the most common pitfalls and maximise your business’s search engine marketing efforts.

Staying up to date with your market and Google algorithms

Your ranking on search engines and the traffic you gain from that are in a constant state of flux. Your competition are always working to try to horn in on your business’s website traffic, sales, and market share. At the same time, factors such as constant changes to Google’s algorithms, behavioural changes in your market, new apps, and new technology will also have the potential to significantly impact your search marketing results.

To protect your search marketing strategy, it is essential to keep up to date with market and search engine optimisation trends and be constantly prepared to adapt to any new changes if you want to see your search marketing strategies grow.

Optimising your local listings

An essential component of Google’s ever-shifting algorithm landscape includes local listings, mobile optimisation and Google Maps. 50% of mobile users will visit a store within one day of performing a local search, so if you haven’t optimised your local listings you are seriously damaging your search marketing strategies and missing out on a lot of potential sales.

Simply claiming your business’s local listings will not be enough to optimise your search engine marketing. You will also need to make sure that you identify and wipe any duplicate listings that could be confusing your customers and constantly check to make sure your listing information is still sending your customers to you without any confusion.

Regularly updating relevant content

A common search engine marketing mistake that many businesses make is forgetting to regularly upload new and relevant content, and update existing content. Not only does your content need to be relevant, it needs to keep up with constantly changing search engine optimisation trends and keywords.

By setting a regular schedule of blog posts, articles, images or videos, and staying up to date with the current search engine optimisation trends, you will ensure that your search rankings will continue to grow.

Neglecting external backlinks

Building a high-quality network of backlinks will help to increase your traffic and increase your business’s reputation with customers and on Google, but it is a search engine marketing tactic that is often overlooked or misunderstood.

Effective link building is achieved by creating high-quality, timely and relevant content and by developing strong business partnerships with reputable local business and organisations. It is important to ensure that your link building efforts only use ‘white hat’ techniques so that you avoid having your credibility being negatively impacted and your search ranking decrease.

If you would like more tips on search engine marketing or you would like some help to get started, contact our search marketing experts at Whitecrow Digital today.


Great pay per click marketing tips for improving your bottom line

Pay per click marketing is a popular digital marketing tool. Companies set up advertising on a search engine or social media platform and pay a small fee for the advert every time an online customer clicks on it. If used effectively, pay per click marketing can help you grow your business and improve your bottom line.

To help you make the most of your pay per click marketing, follow the tips we've outlined below:

Have a clear objective

With pay per click marketing, it's important to have a clear objective - what are you trying to achieve? For example, if you have a product you're trying to sell, you may want to funnel online customers to your website to purchase this product. Clearly defining your objective will help you create a persuasive advert and select the keywords that are appropriate.

Choose the right keywords and terms

It's essential to choose the right keywords and search phrases for your advert. These reflect what your online customers generally type into a search engine to find the products or services you're selling, so a great tip to help you find keywords used regularly by online customers for the products or services you sell is to use Google's keyword planner tool in AdWords. By experimenting with keyword abbreviations and everyday language, you may also find keywords that have a stronger online following.

Set yourself a budget for your campaign

Determine upfront the price you're willing to pay for the keywords and phrases you choose. With search engine marketing, you need to be aware that the price you pay will vary depending on how competitive the market is. Also, with social media marketing, the higher your budget, the better your access to a large audience.

Streamline the sales process with a landing page

For any advert you put out, make sure you have a landing page set up that customers can be directed to when they click on the advert. This makes it far easier for you to get them to take the next step, whether that's buying a product or service, signing up to a subscription or filling in a sales enquiry. The information on your landing page should reinforce the message of your advertising campaign in more detail, convincing your online audience of why it's in their best interests to take the next step with you.

Track and optimise your customer's journey

Pay per click marketing campaigns give you access to analytics, which allow you to track and optimise your customer's journey so that you achieve the best results possible. If you find you aren't getting the results you are after from your pay per click campaign, experiment by trialling different keywords and phrases, changing your advert or increasing your budget. Tracking the analytics of these different attempts will show you what works and what doesn't, enabling you to have more success with your campaigns and, most importantly, improve your bottom line.

If you'd like further tips on pay per click marketing or you want assistance setting up your campaigns, contact our marketing experts at Whitecrow Digital today - we specialise in targeting and re-targeting marketing campaigns.


Our #1 quick start tip for fast marketing results using digital marketing?

Everybody is interested in dipping their toes into digital marketing, however many people struggle with understanding the best place to start. Should I dive headfirst into running some Facebook ads or should I start running my very own Google AdWords campaign? Many people start here, get excited and then unfortunately lose steam as they don't get the results that they want. At this point you start searching the internet trying to find the holy grail of information or a cheap provider that promises the world. Either way you go at this point is destined to result in failure.

Digital Marketing is something that everyone feels that they can do and lots of people these days call themselves a social media strategist or a digital marketing wizard without any formal qualifications or anything to back it up. So, where do you start then? This is our #1 quick start tip for fast results when implementing a digital marketing campaign. If you do this step first we guarantee that you will be confident about where your marketing is going to take your business and who is going to implement it. Let's get started!

Our #1 tip and something we start with whenever we launch a client campaign is .... "Understand Your Return On Investment"

I know, I know you've heard it a thousand times before and this isn't some kind of new information that will blow you away, however this explanation will help you understand how you can explode your sales and build sustainable digital marketing campaigns that really do deliver a ROI. It all comes down to understanding what your ROI is and how you can achieve it. As we discussed many people jump headfirst into a digital marketing campaign either themselves or with a provider without understanding what impact it will have on their bottom line. Follow these steps and you will be prepared to take your marketing to the next level from day 1.

Understand your business data

Unfortunately it's all too often that many of us as business owners don't really understand our margins and what a customer acquisition means for our business. Every business is different and it will vary depending on what service or product you provide. You may offer a service that charges your customer every month or you may have variable once off purchases. Every customer acquisition has inherent value to your business and to your bottom line. Before we get into complicated customer lifetime value calculations that marketers love to throw at people you simply just need to understand your margins as follows:

  1. What does an average sale look like for your business every time you acquire a customer?
  2. What kind of gross margin do you generate for your business every time you acquire a customer?
  3. How many times on average does your customer purchase from you in a 12 month period?
  4. How many referrals do they generate for you?

Many people see these questions and then start to think it's all too hard. It's a worthwhile exercise because you not only start to understand your business a bit more, but you can start to see how your marketing really should take into account what a customer means to your bottom line so you can determine if you're making money or losing it each time you acquire a customer. The beauty of digital marketing is that you can track that all too easily.

There a couple of ways you can use this data:

  1. You can create a simple calculation > Per customer I make $1,000 multiplied by my gross margin of 40% means that for every customer I acquire I generate $400.
  2. You can go a bit further with a lifetime value of a customer calculation. Work it out using this information below.

++ Click Image to Enlarge ++
How To Calculate Customer Lifetime Value

Once you know what one customer means to your business you can logically start to follow the steps. If you understand what a customer means to your bottom line you can track what you're spending and determine if it's profitable. Why is this critical? You can not only see if a provider is delivering value in a service but you can build a digital marketing campaign that can scale.

Create a forecast

Just like your accountant would create a cash flow forecast we believe in a digital marketing forecast. Think about how much better off your marketing would be if you could understand and review what your actual results were in comparison to your forecast? It's easy to start:

  1. Build a spreadsheet factoring in your marketing costs > pay per click costs, management fees from a provider, staff costs
  2. Use the information you've created based on your business data to track what every enquiry you generate will mean for your business
  3. You can forecast how many enquiries you expect to generate and if you do meet that target and for that spend what will that look like for your bottom line
  4. You can now understand if spending $1,000 on SEO is going to be profitable or even those $500 Facebook ads really are delivering

We know it's not entirely that easy so we've decided to give you access to our expertise and skills to create you your very own digital marketing forecast. It's valued at $1,000 but you can request it here for FREE. If you follow these steps you will easily be able to launch a successful digital marketing campaign that delivers real results to your bottom line.


Digital Marketing Tools For Small Businesses

If you run a small business you're constantly looking for ways to get an advantage over your competitors and improve your return on your marketing spend. One of the easiest ways to do this is through digital marketing. It's not an easy road though.

You need to be committed to strategies that deliver your business not only traffic but the right type of traffic. There are a few tools your business can use to automate some of your marketing tasks if you are looking to save time and handle some of your digital promotion in-house.

Schedule your social media

Everyone loves social media. If you're a business it can be a difficult task to continually remember to engage with your audience and send out relevant and timely content. The best thing you can do with social media is to remain consistent with what you post and when you post.

If you post something every couple of months your engagement with your audience will be low and they won't know when to expect your posts.

You can overcome this by simply scheduling your social media posts in advance. Using a tool like Hootsuite or Buffer allows you to plan and schedule your social media posts in advance. You can then focus your time on additional social media tasks focused on boosting engagement.

Track your website traffic

One thing you should know is how much website traffic you are generating and where it is coming from. It's not enough to just think your digital marketing is working. You need to be able to use real data to drive your decision making. Analytics, graphs and reports aren't for everyone and sometimes it can be difficult to work through what the data means. The easiest thing to do is to hire a freelancer that can interpret your reports on a monthly basis and give you a breakdown on the stats.

It doesn't have to be detailed reporting. Just a simple overview of where your traffic is coming from can help you make better decisions.

Automate some display re-marketing

Do you ever get the feeling you are being followed? You are browsing the internet one day and you stumble across a website and then all of the sudden you see it everywhere. It's not magic and no this website isn't suddenly the most popular thing online. Everytime you visit a website they can track your visits with cookies. These websites can then target you with subtle and relevant advertising to try and drive you back to perform an action.

As a small business this is something you can do easily as well. The best thing is you don't need a huge budget and you can also manage it yourself if you want to. A simple and effective tool you can use to achieve this kind of re-targeting is AdRoll.

Create engaging content easily

Do you ever struggle to come up with easy to read and useful content. Don't struggle with the daily grind of trying to find the time to write your own content. You can use a freelance network through Upwork to write your content. Another simple tool is Copify that allows you to send out requests for copy and receive back a well written article that you can post on your website or send to your clients.

Do it yourself email marketing

Having a list of customers and potential customers in one location allows you to easily send them information, offers and drive engagement easily and at low cost. If you are still sending emails manually via your own email you need to stop now. When sending emails do you ever sit there and wonder who opened it, did they read it and did they click on any links. By using an email service like Mailchimp or Aweber you can easily send bulk emails to different groups and get important stats on who opens your email and what they do once they open it. It might make that next phone call to a prospect that little bit easier.

We hope some of these tools can help you kick start your digital marketing. If you need some help from the experts give us a call.

Related Tags: Digital Marketing Newcastle


The Keys To Using Social Media Effectively

At the start of the new year many clients we talk to are interested in reviewing their social media strategies and what they can do to generate more from the seemingly hundreds or even thousands of customers at their doorstep. Firstly, it's not easy to generate results from social media. It typically takes either an investment of time or money & usually it's both. To get you started here are some simple tips we use that you can implement easily:

Optimise Your Social Media Profiles

It's seems really obvious that all your contact information should be up to date including your branding and cover images, however it's often overlooked. Having the most critical up to date information on your social media accounts including your phone number, website & email address is important. Why? Facebook as an example is now becoming one of the biggest search engines due to the sheer amount of information that is generated daily. If someone is searching for you they will either go to Google or Facebook. If your information is incorrect they will move onto the next business.

Pay To Play

Don't expect to cut through to your targeted audience without some promotion. This could be as simple as a follower engagement campaign on Twitter or a Facebook likes campaign. This organically increases the reach of your posts and also will increase your number of likes and followers. Just make sure you are clear on who your desired audience is, what their interests are and what their key demographics are. You don't need to spend a fortune. You can achieve some basic results spending $50 per month.

Consistency

One of the biggest reasons people on social media interact with a brand or service is that they deliver consistent content that is timely. What this means is that if someone likes your page and they interact with you regularly they know what they are getting and when. This is why it's important that you focus on your tone, messaging, posting times and content regularly. If you plan and stay consistent your levels of engagement with people who are genuinely interested in what you do will increase.

Focus On Value & Not What You Do

The days of simply posting "we are good at this and we are good at that" doesn't work anymore. Think about what you engage with on social media. Try and implement this into your business and the posts you create. How can you create value for your audience? This means sharing other peoples content as well as your own. Delivering value over self promotion will deliver greater results.

Reviews

If you provide a great service encourage your customers to review you on Facebook. While you can tell people all day about how good you are the impact of seeing other people giving you positive reviews is far greater.

Plan, Schedule & Promote Your Posts

Most business owners are time poor and struggle to stick with social media long term. They don't believe the results are worth the effort. It's important that you pick the right channels to target and it's also important to stick with it long term and invest. Developing a consistent posting plan and scheduling your content can save you hours of time and worry. Tools like Hootsuite or Buffer can help you schedule, monitor and evaluate your social media posts and audience.

Related Tags: Social Media Marketing Newcastle | Digital Marketing Newcastle


5 Resources You Can Use To Create Killer Content

It's one of the most difficult and time consuming tasks for any business that is undertaking a digital strategy. Content creation isn't necessarily difficult, however creating content that creates links, social sharing and addresses a problem for your core audience is. First off there is so much content out there at the fingertips of people searching for information it makes it difficult to craft a piece of information that hits the mark. It's even harder to do it on an ongoing basis. We're big supporters of content as it gives you as a business an opportunity to disseminate your knowledge to your potential audience. The way you distribute your content is just as important as what you create, however you can't publish or promote anything if you don't put the time into creating it first.

If you browse Neil Patel's blog you will get an understanding of just how much time he puts into crafting each piece of content he creates and the focus of addressing his audiences problems and solving it with what he writes. Not everyone has the time to write content as you are typically focusing on the day to day tasks of running your business. We hope these 5 quick tips will help save you some time and get you on your way to creating content that attracts, converts and helps your audience.

Creating Catchy Headlines

A headline is the hook that attracts people and gets them interested in reading your piece of content. Crafting a headline that addresses a need and drive visitor actions isn't easy. It takes time to test, test and test again to find a strategy that works. A common theme that people use just like this article is to use a number and a hook. Here are a few examples:

  • 13 reasons why X widget perform better than Y widget
  • 7 skills you need to be a better salesperson
  • 14 ways you can grow your business without spending a fortune

You should try and keep your headlines simple & concise but try and use a number that isn't generally used. For example people use three or four a lot of the time. Try and use 13 or as many as you possibly can. The more the better.

A great tool you can use is the Hubspot blog topic generator. You input some nouns that you would like to write about and it will spit out some headlines. This tool might get your creative juices flowing and enable you to think of a new topic or way of writing your article that may resonate with your audience.

Sourcing Visuals That Make An Impact

The best thing you can support your content with is images and video. There are several ways you can do this and all of it is free. Try and avoid taking images off Google or taking them off somebody else's website. You may have issues with copyright and it's always a better idea to have a library of your own images and visuals that you can utilise across a range of different channels to support your content promotion. Here is what we recommend you use:

  • Getty Images - Getty provide a service where you can embed images on your blog with the proper accreditation for the photographer and it's free
  • Free stock image sites - examples such as picjumbo, flickr creative commons and unsplash are great resources to collect and use high quality images
  • Adobe stock - if you are looking to go professional and invest some resources into your blog you could use a service such as Adobe Stock

What About An Infographic?

Infographics are great pieces of content because they are great for:

  • Social sharing
  • Condensing information and giving visual impact
  • Creating links by allowing visitors to embed the infographic on their own website

Infographics sound good in theory, but they usually take a lot of time to create and do well. If you are really trying to generate some links and social shares it may be worth investing in a professional design for an infographic based on a piece of content you have created or are thinking of creating. The best tool you can use to create a cost effective infographic is Canva.

Canva is a tool that allows anyone to create graphics with a drop and drag do it yourself platform. You can turn your infographic around in a few hours as opposed to days and weeks and you can focus your efforts on promoting it.

What About A Copywriter?

The hardest part of content creation is making it a habit and getting in the routine of thinking up content ideas and then creating them. Using a headline creator you can get some ideas for potential pieces of information you want to create for your audience. We know that good content creation doesn't necessarily mean just writing articles for your blog. It usually is the first step in the content creation process. From that first piece of content you can create videos, infographics and podcasts. One of the ways you can eliminate the routine problem of getting your content written is to use a copywriter. We would recommend using a copywriter to create a 500 word article that you can then use as the base to build a 750-1000 word piece of content for your blog. Starting from a base with good well written content will help you then add your knowledge and expertise and turn a good piece of content into a great one. There are many copywriting services online. You can find your own freelancer on something like Upwork or you can post content ideas directly to potential writers on a platform like Copify.

Create A Plan

The best thing you can do when thinking about creating content for your audience is developing a plan. This plan should include:

  • Content themes
  • Content titles and what problems you're addressing
  • Call to action from content
  • Who is the content for
  • How you will distribute the content e.g. blog, email, social media
  • What other types of content could you create from this article - YouTube video, Infographic, Podcast

Invest time into the planning stage and you will be well on your way to creating killer content that is not only useful for your audience but should deliver real results for your business over time if you do it right. We'd love to hear what tools have helped you create content for your customers and potential customers.

Related Tags: Digital Marketing Newcastle | Social Media Marketing Newcastle


7 Social Media Tips For Small Businesses

No matter the size of your business a sound social media presence is important. Customers now use it as a channel to communicate, ask questions, complain, review and search for products and services. Managing your social media channels is not only time consuming it’s also often difficult to get right. Here are 7 tips from our experts on what we think your business should start doing today.

Align Business Goals To Your Social Media Goals

Social media is just like any other digital marketing channel. You should be measuring and reviewing it regularly. A common mistake businesses make is that they don’t set expectations from what they want from their social media activities. They see it as a must have, throw up some content and usually see less than desirable results.

The best thing you can do is align your marketing or business goals to your social media goals. It’s important that your goals are measurable so you can set action plans regularly on how to achieve them. For example a goal to increase engagement isn’t good enough. You should outline that you want X number of likes by Y date or Y number of followers by X date. Set goals, measure, review and implement your action plan.

Audit Your Profiles & Compare To Your Competitors

The best place to start when developing a social media plan is auditing and analysing your competitors and how they are performing in comparison to you. You can start simply by identifying the number of likes & followers they have and comparing that to your profiles. Some questions you can use during your audit:

  • How many likes and followers do they have?
  • What type of content are they creating?
  • What content is resonating with their audience?
  • What are their strengths?
  • What are their weaknesses?

Here is a great resource to get you started. Once you know a bit more about your competitors you have the opportunity to take parts of what they are doing, make it your own and create a differentiation point in the direction of your social media posts.

Content, Content & More Content

Doing content right isn’t easy. Curating, creating & sharing the right content takes time. Social media is an experience for most people. They want to be entertained, informed or educated. With your organic posts you should be focusing on a strategy that blends your own created content and other pieces of curated information.

Don’t just focus on everything about yourself and your business. People will quickly get turned off if you are constantly trying to sell them something. A great way to highlight a product or service you have is to turn it into a piece of content.

Let’s say you sell widget X. Instead of just promoting the product create an article, video or infographic around how customers can use it and the benefits. Your product may solve a problem for your customers. Highlight how it does it and then share it on your social profiles. The effect will be greater than a simple post saying “Hey buy X widget because we think it’s really good”. When creating your content for social media try and think about what pain points your customers have, how your product solves it and how you can tell them that in an entertaining, informative and educational way.

Schedule & Save Time

If you run a small business or you are in charge of your social media activities within an organisation you’re likely time poor. Thinking of content ideas, sharing content, trying to increase engagement, commenting, sharing and liking takes a lot of time. To increase the effectiveness of your time on social media you should invest in preparing an editorial posting calendar and scheduling your content in advance.

We recommend preparing a plan for content a month in advance. You could keep the same consistent structure each month as follows:

  • Post the same time every day - optimise the times of the day by analysing engagement and reach to find out what time of the day seems to work for you
  • Develop themes aligned to your business. An example would include Inform, Educate, Entertain - create your own or curate content that matches these themes
  • Source user generated shout outs or reviews - hashtags can be especially useful for this. Find any content your customers are posting and share it. Make sure you give it your own spin when you share it
  • Schedule your content using a tool like Hootsuite or Buffer
  • If one person schedules your social media posts then try and get another person in the business to audit and check your posts
  • Maintain consistency in your messaging, voice, tone & calls to action

Tailor Your Message To Your Social Media Channel

It’s tempting to get every single social media profile you can because that’s what everyone thinks you should do. Most businesses get excited open a Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, Pinterest, Snapchat, Linkedin & Google+ account. They then post once or twice and then lose interest. Does this sound familiar? Think about your business, audience and potential customers. What social media channels are you most likely going to find them on? If a social media channel doesn’t make sense for your circumstances then don’t use it.

Once you identify your ideal social media channels you should start to think about the different messaging and content you should share. Everything should be tailored to how users see and consume information when they are scrolling. What you post on Facebook should be different to what you post on Twitter. Be aware of the nuances on each channel and how that will affect what you post. Are visuals important? Should I be using hashtags? How short or long should my message be?

Engage to increase visibility

Engagement is a two way street and is something that is usually completely disregarded by most businesses. Typically most businesses want likes, comments, retweets and followers. One of the best ways for you to increase your engagement is to be involved in it yourself. This means liking posts, commenting and being involved on social media.

The more you put into your engagement the more you will get out of it. If you’re on Instagram you should be involved in liking photos, commenting on photos and following people who interest and are aligned with your business. On Facebook make sure you follow suppliers or other businesses related to what you do. Share their content, comment and like their posts.

These actions are intended to increase your visibility to potential customers who want to follow your business, buy your products or use your services.

Invest time, money or resources

To be successful on social media you need to either invest time, money or resources. It’s a time consuming task and it requires effort to achieve results whether it be an increase in leads, sales or a great community of followers. If you’re investing time make sure you develop a clear strategy, set some goals and measure them periodically. If you’re investing resources make sure you train your staff properly on how to use social media and what your expectations are. If you’re investing money make sure you hire a company or professional that understands social media strategy and can tailor a plan that suits your requirements.

We hope these 7 tips will help your business be more successful on social media. We’d love to hear any comments or tips you may have.

Related Tags: Social Media Management Newcastle | Digital Marketing Newcastle


Ways Facebook Can Help You Acquire More Customers For Your Business

The very subtlety of Facebook advertising makes it an effective advertising medium that can attract more customers to your business. Generally viewed as benign, Facebook is primarily a tool of communication between friends and family; so seeing an ad as you scroll through chummy holiday snaps and loving messages posted by people you know is more akin to a word of mouth recommendation from someone you trust, especially if it has been liked or shared by one of your contacts. This provides an immediate advantage over traditional advertising mediums, which are much more impersonal.

Facebook ads stream seamlessly alongside personal posts

Facebook users actively read posts, treating each one with the same intensity. Ads appear seamlessly, so receive equal attention as posts from contacts. Reacting to an ad is all too easy for your potential customer. A simple click will share your ad with a new batch of potential clients, carrying the virtual recommendation of their close friend or colleague. Your ad can then direct clients to your website for purchasing, registering or inquiries, adding another contact for circular emails and other advertising strategies. Best of all, you can use Facebook’s own tools to track the progress of your ad, from the moment a potential customer sees the ad to them making a purchase from your website.

1.4 billion potential customers

At last count Facebook users totalled more than 1.4 billion - that is how many customers you can attract with a Facebook ad. The theory of six degrees of separation state that all humans are connected by less than six people. You can test this theory by scrolling through your contact list and see how many common friends you have that you didn’t realise were connected. This is how simply your ad can spread and attract customers.

Target your ideal customer

Facebook advertising lets you target your customer with as many specifics as you like. You can choose your audience broadly or create a custom list from your customer contact list complemented by Lookalike lists matched to your own best customers.

Using demographics, you can target your audience by gender, age, or location - postcode, country, region or just the area around your business. Other possible demographics include languages spoken and interests – information generously supplied by the Facebook users themselves, making targeting your perfect client simple.

Let your customers come to you

You can find the customers most likely to visit your website based on their behaviour or stage of life – whether they are planning to buy a home or car, have children, or purchase a new phone. Facebook will deliver your ads based on customers’ interests, likes and shares - as the ad is relevant, the Facebook user is more likely to read and react. You can also join with third party data partners, who will allow you access to information on your potential customers when they are not on Facebook, which helps drive offline sales and brand familiarity.

Facebook helps you monitor your advert effectiveness

Facebook doesn’t just leave you to work out if their advertising is effective or not. They provide conversion tracking letting you follow the activity once your ad has been seen. Inserting a Facebook pixel allows you to track actions, tell your customers what action to take and receive reports on how many people made purchases on your website specifically because of your Facebook ad.

If you don’t like it, change it

Facebook advertising is extremely flexible. Based on your results you can alter your advert on a weekly basis. To get the ad right, Facebook allows you to test your design with a split-ad testing tool that allows you to find which audience creates the best response.

Facebook users are a moving target

And let’s not forget the value of an audience with a mobile phone. With 1.19 billion mobile users, you can target your audience wherever they are and whatever they are doing - in their leisure moments, at lunch or on the train, as well as when working.

Facebook advertising makes sense

Overall, advertising on Facebook is a smart way for your business to acquire more customers. Facebook advertising is efficiently targeted, flexible and user friendly, as well as allowing you to monitor and track its effectiveness. Facebook is also continually adapting its services to improve its business model and is a medium that wants to both attract users to the site as well as increase customers to your business.

Related Tags: Social Media Marketing Newcastle | Digital Marketing Agency Newcastle


The Importance of Digital Marketing For Your Business

From toddlers to retirees, it is impossible for anyone living in the developed world to have missed the fact that - in the space of just a few short years - everything has changed. In just about every way, the world has switched gear from analogue to digital - and your business must too.

It's good news

The digital revolution has connected the world in previously unforeseen ways, and when it comes to marketing your product or service, that is very good news. But why is digital marketing so crucial for your business? Because it is fast replacing its more traditional counterparts, which in the space of just a few years might be gone completely.

There are other reasons you need to fully embrace digital marketing for your business right now:

The reach

While fewer and fewer people are buying print newspapers, more and more people - of every age and generation and belonging to every socio-economic group - are turning on laptops, iPads and smartphones. Statistics show that in a country like Australia, almost everyone - more than 90% of the population - are now online. That's an awful lot of potential customers, all within your grasp.

It's faster

As quickly as you can click a mouse button, you can be digitally marketing your product to a specifically-targeted audience. And not just that, by sitting in the driver's seat of your website, Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn accounts, you can stay in control and ensure that changes of strategy in your mind can be instantaneously delivered to your customers without involving a sluggish and expensive middle-man.

It's more affordable

Before, you would market your business in costly traditional ways, such as in phone books and directories, and even in magazines, newspapers and on radio and television. But your customers are now online, learning not only about the world but the products they want to buy through things like Google search and Facebook. That is not only good news for your hip pocket - with online marketing costing a mere fraction of traditional marketing but potentially reaching a much bigger audience - but also for your business at large, because it levels the playing field when it comes to competing against even much bigger businesses with huge marketing budgets. Banner ads, pay-per-click, email, mobile and social media advertising are as achievable for you as they are for the biggest of your rivals.

It allows you to get creative

With traditional marketing, those with the biggest budgets won the day and the customer. But digital marketing not only levels the playing field when it comes to the more affordable outlets of today, it allows you to get creative. Now, high creativity and motivation allows you to out-strategise and out-research your competitors with much bigger budgets by using creative ideas and clever content, with blogs not only keeping your audience entertained, engaged and up-to-date but your all-important SEO value as high as possible.

It connects you with your customers

Social media channels in particular allow you to cut through the usual marketing hype and connect directly with your customers. Engaging and interacting with current and prospective clients, for example through comments sections, not only builds your brand and gives you fast access to honest feedback, it allows you to build real and genuine relationships with your clients, gaining their trust and getting instant recommendations to their 'friends'. It also gives you a direct line to your targeted demographic, and an opportunity to simply ask them a question and get an honest, uncensored answer, because constructive criticism can be even more valuable than compliments.

You know exactly what is going on

The speed, cost and creativity aside, the huge benefit of digital marketing is the level of feedback it gives you, coupled with the many levers of versatility you can then apply to making your campaigns even more effective. As the sophistication of the various digital marketing platforms increases, so too does the amount of data that feeds back to you about the impact of those strategies. While traditional marketing forms required you to do ultra-expensive market and customer research, digital results are now fed back to you with remarkable accuracy and detail, and in real time, allowing you to constantly tweak and perfect the way your message is delivered to potential customers. And it's not just things like sophisticated digital analytics, but the simple promotion of a 'hashtag' that will give you instant insight into what people think and are saying about you, and what they want you to do differently.

Related Tags: Digital Marketing Services Newcastle | Social Media Marketing Newcastle