SEO for Beginners

SEO for Beginners

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How often do you hear the phrase “it’s all in the SEO”? Interestingly enough, about 53% of website traffic comes from an organic web search. Think about all the times you pick up your phone and Google a specific question or phrase. Today we are diving into SEO for beginners and the ways you can begin implementing SEO into your marketing strategy.

According to Search Engine Land, the basic definition of SEO is “the process of improving your site to increase its visibility when people search for products or services related to your business in Google, Bing, and other search engines.”

While you may not know what you’re doing when you google a keyword or phrase, that is the basic principle of search engine optimization.

I think of SEO as the missing puzzle piece to any great marketing strategy. The goal is to get your website at the top of the Google page. Think about your own Google search habits.

How often do you find yourself going to the second or third page of Google?

Exactly, practically never, so keep in mind your Google ranking while building or editing your website.

A simple way to implement SEO into your marketing strategy is blog posts. The nice thing about them is that you can scatter all the essential keywords commonly associated with your brand.

Let’s talk keywords.

Keywords and phrases like “SEO for beginners ” or “how to add SEO to my marketing strategy” are probably how you found this blog post. It’s all about knowing your target audience and what they will type into the search bar.

Two ways to implement keywords throughout your site can be in the post’s title and organically in the post. There are two types of headers to consider when adding your keywords. There are the H1 and the H2 headers. Your H1 header is the main one that you see, the title. The H2 header is what guides visitors to a specific section on your website. While your web page’s title and blog posts are essential, the secondary header can be what gets viewers. 

Another area where you can add essential keywords is through the pictures on your website.

Image descriptions are also equally as important as the words on your site. Since Google can not read an image, it knows the content or image by an alt tag, also known as “alt attribute” and “alt description.” The Alt Tag is an HTML attribute applied to image tags to provide a text alternative for search engines. The photos that come up at the top of the Google homepage are all due to SEO keywords.

When adding SEO-specific content to your pages, do a keyword audit routinely by using MOZ’s keyword tool to improve your ranking. Act like you’re one of your customers and Google common words and phrases associated with your brand.

When learning and first diving into SEO, take the time in the beginning to do research. The more research you do on your audience, the better keywords, and phrases you will have.

 

SEO Beginners

26 Almost “Non-Technical” SEO Mistakes to Avoid To Better Rank on Google [Infographic]

26 Almost “Non-Technical” SEO Mistakes to Avoid To Better Rank on Google [Infographic]

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If you are like me my eyes cross and my brain freezes when I read an article about how to rank better on Google. Most of the time it is very technical and oftentimes confusing as to what to do and how. Even I struggle sometimes to figure it out.  Could someone give me something that is simple to understand and more than likely the average website owner could even do it themselves? Well, finally the folks at Hosting Clues did!

These are simple, common sense mistakes to avoid so your ranking in Google or other search engines won’t suffer over time. We see many of these common mistakes in websites we review and here is an easy way to avoid them now. Take a look at these on the list and recommend any that need to be added! Let us know if you have any questions or need any help getting these corrected by calling us at 404.425.9573 or email us at team@csmediagroup.com

26 Common SEO Mistakes

Your Social Media Checklist 2022: Essential Daily, Weekly & Monthly Marketing Tasks

Your Social Media Checklist 2022: Essential Daily, Weekly & Monthly Marketing Tasks

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Making a Social Media content plan can at times be daunting, to say the least. The checklist below gives you the direction you need via a simple checklist you can follow for daily, weekly, and monthly tasks you need to do to start drawing attention to your brand. by following a checklist to ensure you get the best out of your social strategy on a consistent basis?

Our friends at SEMrush share their tips for success in this infographic.

Social Media Checklist

Where Have All The Phone Calls Gone?

Where Have All The Phone Calls Gone?

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Payphone polesI was doing my usual Saturday morning ritual of getting gas for the truck and running errands when I noticed two old metal payphone poles sitting there right by the pumps. I immediately had a flashback to the days when the payphone was a key element of communicating with the world in my professional life.  You may think payphones have gone the way of the Dodo Bird but you would be wrong! Do you know where they still are being used? The only place they are still around is in airports and bus terminals. I had a friend that use to have a business where he placed payphones in business and gas stations for years all over the state of Georgia.  He was doing very well… Until that fatal moment when the cell phone took over almost overnight.

payphone boothIndulge me for a moment as I share a flashback from my past. As a young salesman right out of college I use to find the bestest phone booths in my territory to make calls from because I needed to make calls during what I referred to as the Dr. Pepper hours (10-2-4) to reach prospects and to call the headquarters office for my perceived “very important messages”. I remember having to make sure I had enough quarters to make calls all day long, each day. Now I know many of you reading this will not remember those days but those that do can relate to how those rainy days also made it so “special” talking with customers during a lightning storm.  Those were the days for sure, weren’t they?  LOL!!

I mention these things to bring to mind something I realized while I was putting gas into my truck that struck me as very odd in that an actual dial-tone phone is possibly nowhere to be found today. When the cell phone was introduced that it was only estimated to have approximately one million users in the US primarily. Boy did someone get that wrong! Now, I can’t think of anyone today I know or meet that doesn’t have at least “one” cell phone device of some shape or kind within their reach, 24/7.  I am curious, have you ever been more than 5 feet from your cell phone, …ever?

As I was pumping my gas I was startled by an incoming text message. The message was from one of my friends I was meeting later that needed to ask a quick question. Oh! Did I mention I got an email from my oldest son just wanting to check in with his Dad shortly after that? Wait a minute! I have this very fancy, expensive “talking into” communication device in my hand called a “smartphone” and I didn’t say a word to either one of them. I remember the days when they both would have picked up an actual dial-tone phone and would have called me to actually talk to me. You know, hear my voice!  Mmm… What is really going on here?

Where have all the phone calls gone?  I use to enjoy them so much? With technology, the Internet, email, voice mail, texting, messaging, cable TV, and the fact we can now control how we get information, things have surely gotten better, right?  Let’s be real for a moment! The cell/smartphone device has become the remote control of our lives.  Where is that personal interaction in our very lives we all want and crave gone?

I will never forget when one of my kids got his first cell phone and was texting to one of his friends that were, actually sitting next to him.  I saw that and just shook my head in disbelief. It got real when the bill came for that first month and he had 2317 texts messages in a single month (roughly 77 texts a day). I want to know just how someone can do that? Then I looked at the charge for those texts and it was over $185+ in “texting” and not to mention fees on top of everything else, just for him!  Wait! What!! Did I mention that he actually had a phone service that both inbound and outbound calls were working on his phone? I know, I checked! Needless to say, his plan was changed immediately. Now he has unlimited texting for free and he pays for his phone.  Whew! Yes, he actually calls me much more than he texts me now. LOL!

I say all of that to make this point.  When was the last time you actually heard the voice of a loved one on your phone or even carried on a lengthy phone conversation with one of your customers about their business needs and struggles you can help them solve? Like you, your customers, believe it or not, actually want to hear from you! I mean they want to hear your voice. Go ahead, say it, you actually want to hear their voice as well don’t you?

Here is what happens when you talk with them. You get to hear the tone in their voice that leads to a clear understanding of how you can better help them reach their dreams and goals so they can thrive.  Your text messages and emails just can’t do that.

So I want you to do something for me right now, not later, right now! Get out your To-Do List and add the following to your action items for the day!

  • I Will Call My Biggest Client to just check in to see how things are going. They will love to hear your voice and will know you care about them and their success.  If they are shocked you called promise you will call more!
  • I Will Call My Favorite Client just to catch up on how their business is progressing and share some growth options with them for free. Your voice will add emotions and feelings so they will know you actually want to help.
  • I Will Call My Mom! Don’t go, “UGH!” I mean it, call her now! She wants to hear from you. Well then, if not your mother, then call your dad, your spouse, significant other, brother, sister, and any one of your friends you haven’t talk to in a while. Just call! They all want to hear what you have to say from the heart, not in a text or a cold email to them!

Now you have the “latest top-secret” business edge you could use this year to grow your business and thrive over your competition. I assure you this newest/oldest competitive advantage is something your competition isn’t doing – a phone call! Come to think of it, I have to call a new client to onboard them for their Fast-Track Growth Accelerator on the phone. So grab your smartphone right now and call the next prospect on your list or a customer and let them hear how much you can and how much you want to help them succeed.

Can I ask a favor? If you want to reach out to me or ask me a question, just call me at 404.425.9573! I actually prefer to hear your voice! Thanks and subscribe for more Marketing Made Great moments!

13 Reasons Why Campaigns Fall Short of Their Objectives

13 Reasons Why Campaigns Fall Short of Their Objectives

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Let’s first start by defining what a marketing campaign is and what it isn’t. Marketing campaigns are used as a company’s efforts to promote a specific goal, such as introducing a new product, increasing sales of a particular service, driving downloads of lead magnets, growing a social media following, or email subscriber list. Effective campaigns are designed to reach a specific audience in various ways and involve a combination of many media platforms.

Many times people miss the point that a marketing campaign isn’t a one-and-done effort. A Facebook LinkedIn ad would be only one tactic of an overall marketing campaign process to get the desired result. Many other elements might be combined with downloadable content, email marketing for nurturing, blog posts, or video to generate more awareness. Depending on your goals and objectives once can be crafted for you to succeed but other times they fall flat of management’s expectations.

The Thirteen Reasons Why Many Marketing Campaigns Fail

  1. Not Having A Clear Marketing Strategy or Plan – At the core of any business is a great marketing planForrester’s commented that 80% of companies take little or no time in planning how they are going to reach their ideal customer or even have a marketing plan of any kind.  Many of the customers we work with start with us start without a marketing plan.  having a well-crafted comprehensive marketing plan gives you the right tools and a winning plan to grow and thrive.
  2. Weak Online Presence – Your first impression is everything when potential buyers are researching your product and services. According to the recent 2021 IDG Customer Engagement research, 72% of tech buyers consider a vendor that educates them through the decision-making process. Prospects want more these days than “brochureware” they want to be lead through a story or journey. a strong web presence that tells the story of your company and your products.  A strong web presence is mission-critical in getting people to interact with your brand in today’s digital world.
  3. Marketing CampaignAbsence of Quality Content – These days, people will not give you their information if you aren’t offering something of real value that will help solve their problem. In the 2021 IDG Customer Engagement survey mentioned above, 87% of technology buyers stated they are willing to register for content; however, only 41% of downloaded work-related content provided buyers with value over the past 12 months. Your website visitors what the content on your website to be valuable and easy to digest.
  4. Your Message Doesn’t Resonate with your Targeted Audience – Either your message is too complex, or you have missed the mark in terms of understanding your ideal customer and their pain points. If your website is not clear, too complicated, or if people don’t see it as a resource, they will more than likely not engage with you.
  5. Misread Market Readiness – We see this oftentimes with many start-up clients. They have developed a product based on some new technology, and they are early to market or are trying to solve a problem that either doesn’t exist or is not well understood. Generating sales leads, specifically, buyers entering the sales cycle is very difficult when the technology has not crossed the chasm or is not well understood.
  6. Expecting Immediate Results – Many campaigns fail because you don’t give them enough time to play out in order to reach their full potential. Campaigns evolve overtime to get the results you want based on the complexity of the offer. For example, you may not see the results of an SEO campaign for six months or longer.
  7. Not Taking an Integrated Approach – This is an important factor in any campaign success. If you are only using one tactic, then it is likely that you will not reach your goals. You need to take an integrated approach and include several clearly identified marketing channels into your program that you have identified for your company. For example, social media ad reach is dependent on how often your audience visits/uses social media. Many B2B buyers do not use social media daily, and that is why you may want to also consider other marketing channels to expand the likelihood of your targeted audience receiving your message.
  8. Trying to Accomplish Too Much With One Campaign – Diluted campaigns rarely succeed. Common goals of a well-crafted campaign include thing like promoting a new product or service, increasing brand awareness, gather customer feedback, generate revenue, boost user engagement or advertise an upcoming event. Trying to accomplish too many things with one budget and one campaign is likely to swing and miss its intended result. focus on accomplishing a very specific goal per campaign.
  9. You Don’t Understand Your Customer’s Journey – Even if you create the perfect campaign and message, it won’t lead to success if your message isn’t delivered to the prospect at the right time. You need to have a strong understanding of your prospect, their purchasing patterns, behaviors, and decision-making process which requires research, tracking, and analyzing customer engagement to understand the buyer’s purchasing journey.
  10. Marketing and Sales Are Not Aligned – today having Sales and Marketing departments working in concert with each other is mission-critical. Successful lead follow-up can make or break a campaign. The marketing team working with the sales team together should agree on what constitutes a qualified sales lead and the process of handoff between teams. Including the sales team gives the marketing team the pertinent information throughout the campaign on what is resonating with prospects and what isn’t working during the campaign as well.
  11. Product Quality/Failure – Like in everything don’t overpromise and underdeliver with the campaigns you run. Ensure your product is shipping and fully test ready to go when you launch your campaign. The quickest way to undermine customer/market trust is to not be able to deliver a product when you have just promoted it or to deliver a product that really isn’t ready for prime time yet.
  12. Marketing Strategy Isn’t Aligned With Your Tactics – Your marketing strategy is the game plan for your campaigns and tactics are the plays that are created out of your playbook. Sometimes executives will request a specific tactic because they heard at a conference or from a friend that it works. If the tactic doesn’t align with your marketing strategy, then you run the risk it will not achieve the desired result.
  13. Using The Wrong Systems to Execute and Measure Your Campaign – As organizations scale, they add to their technology stack to manage and measure company results and processes. Often times sales and marketing activities use different tools, making it hard to get a clear view into prospect responses to marketing campaigns and other marketing channels. The assets and data you need to make sound business decisions.  Standardizing corporate tech stacks across the company makes communications and decisions based on the data received simpler and clear to grow your company faster.