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Effective content distribution strategies to maximize your reach
Learn how using hashtags and repurpose content correctly can help you reach your audience and boost web traffic. photo by Visualhunt.com written by Aleksandar Debeljak Writing good content is important but it is also essential that you succeed in reaching out to your targeted audience on social media. It’s not worth your time to create quality content that nobody will see. If audiences are neither finding nor sharing your content, it’s time for you to look into content distribution strategies to maximize your reach. I’m going to share how using hashtags and repurposing your content will help you to reach a larger audience. This involves additional work on your part, but it will have lasting effects towards growing your brand and reaching your goals. Hashtags As you may have noticed, many people use hashtags in posts on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Hashtags can help you appear on social media while giving you the chance to find relevant content and other companies using the same hashtag. Knowing how to use hashtags is not only important but also essential for successful social media outreach. Using hashtags It’s important that you use specific hashtags to reach out to the right visitors. Spamming a post with many different hashtags will give you more exposure, but it does not necessarily help your content become popular. Target yourself to a target audience to create a greater commitment to what you share. It is, however, different in how to handle hashtags on the various social platforms. Here are some tips on how to use hashtags on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram: Use only one or two hashtags on Twitter, this gives you increased engagement while three or more will give you a negative impact. Tweets without hashtags are only half as effective, so it’s important that you always try to hashtag what you want to share. On Instagram, it’s important that you use many hashtags to create more interactions. Statistics show that if you use 11 or more hashtags, you have a greater chance that more users will share your content. However it is more important with the message you use – so make sure the hashtags are relevant to the content. Unlike the other two platforms, it´s not as effective to use hashtags on Facebook. The more hashtags you use, the fewer interactions you will get. Statistics show that it is more efficient not to use hashtags at all. Therefore, be sure to use it only for business-oriented users, or for creating a community. Keep in mind that your hashtag should be unique, memorable but also relevant to your business or campaign. It is important that you do not use words that are too common. For example, if you write a food blog focusing on Asian food, it’s better to use the hashtag #asianfood instead of just typing #food. You can also be inspired by your followers or competitors, and see what hashtags they use. Remember, you can also use your company name as a hashtag to spread your brand. How not to use hashtags One of the most important tips is that you should not write too long hashtags. Even if it is a specific word, your followers will not want to use it because writing it is difficult. Another advice is to not have more hashtags than regular words in your posts. Image Source: Step Two On Instagram, for example, this is a problem where many people upload an image with 20-30 hashtags but no common text. Even if this gives you followers, it’s not certain that it’s a follower that your business wants to target. Instead, be specific and clear with your messages. Repurposing your content When you repurpose content, you are changing the format of the content to attract more people in a different segment by stretching its value on mediums that your targeted audience prefers. Infograph An effective way is to turn your content into an infograph. Distributing content as an infograph is increasingly popular among companies and has increased in use. Visual content is attractive among B2B (Business to Business) marketing. Podcast Podcasts are an easily consumable content format. With podcasts, you can easily filter through your blogs to find those that are worthy of converting into a podcast. All you need to do is to use your content that answers popular niche questions and turn them into conversations that can be used as review, spark series or interviews with experts. Webinar / Workshop Hosting a webinar or workshop can be a great way to generate new leads and establish your credibility. You get a chance to interact with, receive feedback and establish a stronger connection with your participants which will allow you to improve your content. LinkedIn LinkedIn is the obvious choice for B2B marketers, 94% use the platform to share content. Remember to always tie back your content to your website! Most effectively through backlinks. A good example of getting visitors to your website is to post a part of your blog on LinkedIn. If they want to continue reading it, they have to click on a link that takes them to your website, where they can read the entire blog. Influencers / Bloggers Also, think of reaching out to other influencers and bloggers. You can do this by following them on social media and commenting on their posts. Once you’ve contacted them, you can help each other by sharing each other’s content. It is important to create interactions and have great commitment on social media. E-newsletter Last but not least, it is important that you send your content to your e-mail list. This method is 40 times more effective than Twitter and Facebook together!! Conclusion By using these tips and methods, you will reach a larger audience. It will take time to grow, but if you do the right things, you will become an influencer that others want to listen to, reach out to, and share your content. How does your company work with content distribution? Do you have any other effective tips to help others maximize their reach on social media? Share it in the comments below!
5 Simple SEO Copywriting Tips For Small Businesses
If you build it, more web traffic will come with these 5 simple seo copywriting tips to improve your small business search rankings. Originally published at Duct Tape Marketing on 18-May-2017 as a guest post. photo by Viral Service written by Derrick English Jr. In the movie Field of Dreams, Ray Kinsella played by Kevin Costner constantly hears the saying “If you build it, they will come.” Spoiler alert, if you have not watched the movie, the prophecy did come true and people showed up to play or watch baseball on the field that Ray created. photo from: Paula J Smith Unfortunately for small business owners, like myself, I do not have the huge budget to promote my product or service like Universal Pictures can, or have not mastered the versatility as Kevin Costner. However, we as small business owners are talented in the work we do and have built a great product or service but have not received the traffic as we expected. The disconnect lies in the fact that we may struggle to communicate the value of our products or services in ways that compel people to buy it. We constantly fall into the traditional marketing trap of thinking we must pressure our customers to buy now, buy now, don’t miss out, don’t miss out – it is all about me, me, me, me – you can only get this from me. We have to realize that it is a global marketplace where our customers can shop around not just in our city, state or country, but anywhere in the world. How about instead of pressuring our customers, we try working on nurturing and gaining trust from our customers until they are ready to buy from us? A 2016 Content Preferences Survey Report stated that 47 percent of respondents (B2B) indicated they viewed three to five pieces of content before engaging with a sales rep. In today’s consumer market, it is clearly better and not a waste of your sales reps’ time to provide the needed content to answer your consumers’ questions and guide them along the buyer’s journey. And when they are ready to buy, they would purchase from you because you gained their trust with the expertise and credibility you provided in your content. To get to this end goal, let us look at the five tips you must understand and work on. 1) What is SEO Copywriting As we know, SEO (search engine optimization) is the process of growing visibility and gaining traffic for web pages through “organic” (free) search engine results. And copywriting is the process of writing engaging advertising materials. Put them together you have this definition from Copyblogger: SEO copywriting is all about crafting content so compelling that other people want to promote it by linking to it or sharing it, which increases your trust and authority and helps pages you want to rank well for certain keywords. This definition shows us that SEO copywriting has two main functions: Engaging readers to build trust and authority. Using keywords to help search engines understand what the content is about. To make this work for your business, SEO copywriting must contain quality content. PERIOD! 2) Keyword research using long-tail keywords When we use Google, Bing, Yahoo or any other search engine, what do we do? We type words into the search box to find an answer to our question. Some are short and some are long but search engines can decipher the keywords to find authoritative content that answers our questions. It takes time and investment for small businesses to compete with larger companies that have plenty of traffic and higher trust and authority from search engines on short keywords. e.g. What do you think would be a better keyword for Linnaeus University to target potential exchange students to learn Swedish there? The short keyword phrase ‘swedish language course’, where the university is competing with online courses, municipalities, community colleges, etc. for high rankings. Or the long-tail keyword phrase ‘swedish language course for international students’, where the university has less competition with only other universities. We highly recommend that you focus on using specific long-tail keywords to gain trust and authority to differentiate yourself and attract better qualified leads who are more interested in buying your product or service. Using a tool such as Google Keyword Planner, you will be able to find the long-tail keywords that interest your buyer personas and see the competition level and other relevant keywords to use. If you look at our title ‘5 Simple SEO Copywriting Tips For Small Businesses’, can you figure out what the long-tail keyword is that we are using? If you guessed ‘simple seo copywriting tips’ then I want to say: photo by: memegenerator.net You may say that I am only getting around 40 searches per month with the keywords, but to our small marketing agency those are the quality leads we are aiming for. To go more in-depth, you can use more user-friendly tools that will provide you better recommendation for specific website keywords or tools that provide you research on your competitors’ keywords. Use the information to get started and compete with them, while finding relevant keywords not being used by your competition to stand out. 3) Key Elements of SEO Copywriting Title The rule of thumb to remember is to make sure your title provides a clear description and your keywords are contained in it. The keywords are an important factor for search engines to know if a page does contain the information that the consumer searched for. It is a good bet to keep your titles between 50 to 60 characters to make sure they display properly on your consumer’s preferred device. Meta description The meta description tag on a page does not affect SEO ranking. However, the keywords do show up in the search results that can benefit you. As you can see from the image above, when I typed in ‘Europe’s greenest city’, the keywords in the meta description appeared and they are bolded to draw attention. Think of meta descriptions as important secondary information that searchers would read before deciding to click. Content We can assume that search engines are using top-notch algorithms to verify if the body of your text is relevant to the keywords used in the search. This means that you should play the quality route and provide meaningful content that your visitors are searching for and show them why you are the subject matter expert on this topic. If you view the Periodic table of SEO Success Factors by Search Engine Land, you will see that majority of the elements in the Content column focus on the quality and substance of the content on the page. Keyword frequency Keyword frequency is the number of times a keyword or phrase appears on a page. It is a SEO best practice to only use keywords when relevant and focus more on answering your consumer’s question. By practicing keyword stuffing you will force visitors to exit right away, which will increase your bounce rate, and it will be only a matter of time when it will give a negative effect to you in the search engine rankings. Page links Providing useful links to other relevant topics internally or externally that a visitor can find useful is just another reason why you are an awesome Good Samaritan. Knowledge should be shared and you can believe that the search engines are rewarding you for links to quality pages. Keep in mind relevant links because having a page that is about the ‘Best Ski Resorts in Sweden’ and then having an external link to ‘Legoland’, just to benefit from their high ranking authority, will not set well with your visitors or search engines. 4) Writing meaningful content for your buyer personas Buyer personas If you do not know who your real audience is, can you really create great content? If you want to gain quality authority in rankings you need to not just assume who your audience may be. You need to be able to have buyer personas that explain your customers’ pain points, role and concerns to be able to create content that resonates with them. e.g. Marcus Sheridan’s pool company was hit hard by the recession in 2008 due to the financial crisis in the US, and they turned it around by answering their customers’ questions which has lead them to receive most web traffic in their industry because they know who to write their content for. By shifting your view of your targeted audience to actual people with specific interests, wants, and needs, you will be able to find better ways to serve them. Storytelling If you want to make content stick in your consumer’s head, then tell a great story. We are drawn to stories that allow us to use our imagination, have characters and situations that we can relate to, and think about the possibilities of what may come. If you think about it, the success of any brand is linked to our emotions. Why do you like Coke over Pepsi, iPhone over Android? It is because of the emotional connections you have with the content that these brands provide you. e.g. Thea from Rosendals Honung gave me a great experience at MatSmåland this past September. I was observing their honey products when she probably noticed that my hands were ashy and stated besides honey, beeswax cream is great for the skin and it is thick enough to keep you hands moist even if you wash them. As an African American, I am usually ashy, so I connected with her message about keeping my hands moist. Then she stated ‘do you mind, would you like to try a little bit’ and I stated ‘sure’. Let me tell you it felt amazing on my hands and I stated right there ‘you made a purchase and if this product holds up to your story about keeping my hands moist after a wash (which it does), you now have a loyal customer’. I remember that experience and the details, because a great story makes consuming the content much easier to their customers. Check out the beeswax cream’s product description for yourself to see how compelling it is. Storytelling is valuable and necessary because it gets your content read and shared amongst others if done properly. On-page SEO The practice of optimizing your web page’s content to rank higher in search engines is called on-page SEO. On-page SEO consists of: Title Domain name Subtitles Content Internal links Image alt text Page loading time Mobile friendly pages Reference Moz’s On-Page Factors for best practices when it comes to on-page SEO, and have the keywords in your title and domain name. 5) Allowing outside sources to help increase your rankings Starting off, over 70% of your web page ranking can be contributed to activities that are performed outside the boundaries of your website, which are called off-page SEO. Off-page SEO Since search engines strive to provide the best results when a searcher utilizes their service, off-page SEO helps provide search engines with a better indication on how other websites and social users perceive your web pages or blogs. The major factors are: Link building – by receiving backlinks to your web page, it is vote of confidence that tells search engines that others find your web page relevant. The more backlinks you receive, the higher your page will rank. Reference Jeff Bullas’ ‘6 Simple Tips to Rank High in Google Search Engine’ article about ways to receive quality backlinks. Social media engagement – social shares are a sign of popularity amongst the general public which search engines are now using social engagement as one of its ranking parameters. Online reputation management – having low quality backlinks can affect your ranking and it is a part of your job to remove them. You can use Google Search Console to see other websites linking to your website, and use the Disavow Links tool to remove any low quality sites. For legal reasons, make sure your off-page SEO activities follows white hat SEO practices and not black hat SEO practices that can get you penalized. Conclusion If you take the time to do research and provide quality long-tail keywords and content that interest your buyer personas, answer their questions and drive people to promote and share your content – you will sooner rather than later start seeing your pages be ranked higher on search engines. By ranking well in search engines, you will increase your organic traffic without having to spend a lot on paid advertising to compete with your competitors. Yes, link building does make up the majority of SEO ranking and allows you to reach out to a wider audience. However, if you put your efforts in providing great content and promoting it correctly, I am 100% sure that ‘…, they (increased organic web traffic) will come’. If you follow these five steps that I’ve outlined above, you will see increase organic traffic and ranking for your web page’s content. What techniques do you use to optimize your web page content?
10 tips for growing your e-commerce site
With these tips, it will make your e-commerce more effective and grow. photo by Pexels.com written by Aleksandar Debeljak More and more people today choose to buy goods online. Therefore, many companies are investing in an e-commerce site where they can sell their products. E-commerce sales amounted to just over 1.9 trillion dollars in 2016, the figure is expected to double by 2020. For smaller businesses it can be difficult to get into the huge e-commerce market. But do not give up! There are many tips to help you sell through and streamline your e-commerce. Keep in mind that any strategy you choose to take that it should deliver a smooth and seamless experience for your customers. 1. Have a content marketing strategy ready before you start To attract customers you need content on your page that is relevant to what the visitor or customer is looking for. Think about creating a smart strategy and content that appeals to your audience. Make sure you set the the right expectations for your content and review the appropriate metrics to make sure you are meeting your goals. 2. Upsell and cross sell your products For instance, if you sell computers, it’s important that you give the customer different suggestions on what might be best for them. Price plays a big part for most when shopping, so it’s important to explain why buying a more expensive product is better. Upsell is a strategy to get the customer to spend more money. Keep in mind, however, that you do not always need to try to sell the most expensive goods to the customer. Depending on what they want to use the computer for, it is important that you provide them with relevant products. For example, if they just want to surf the web and check their email, you can give them suggestions on the cheapest computers. But if they want to do video editing, streaming or playing games instead, you need to show them computers at a higher price range. When the customer is about to or decided to purchase a computer, it is important that you show them additional products that they might need in connection with the computer. For example, it could be a computer screen, mouse or keyboard. This is called cross selling, it is a strategy where you try to get the customer to buy additional products that are relevant to what they want to buy. These strategies make up more than a third of Amazon’s total revenue. Therefore it is worth investing in. 3. Get rid of abandoned shopping carts A common issue with e-commerce sites is that many visitors who add items to their cart abandon it. To overcome this, there are various solutions that allow you to reduce the number of abandoned shopping carts. A smart way is to send out an email to them to remind them that they were close to buying something. In order to get them to follow up their purchases, it might be good to give them a discount code to get the deal through. Another way is to use an A/B test. You have several variants of the same web page to test which one works best. This is a smart way to find out what your customers like and what needs to be removed. It is an effective way of converting visitors into customers. Image Source: ConversionXL 4. Create a unique email marketing campaign When sending emails to your customers, it’s important that it’s personal and unique to get their attention. Content marketing not only helps you create content on your website, it is also a healthy strategy to use when creating newsletters for your customers. 5. Invest in user generated content User generated content is a perfect way to connect with your customers. It also gives your company free exposure from real, unpaid customers who enjoy your product. Statistics show that user-generated content is very effective, in social media only, 68% of users between the ages of 18-24 believed it affected their purchase decisions. 6. Give your loyal customers rewards Reward your most loyal customers with discounts and special offers. Show that you appreciate their loyalty. This is a great way to gain and maintain loyal customers. 7. Use video content to show your products An effective way of displaying a product is by using video. Video content can give your business more customers. Statistics show that 73% of visitors are more likely to buy a product after they watched a video. Additionally, statistics showed that 96% of customers felt that video content helped them make a purchase decision. 8. Make an effort to be seen on different social media It is important to try to see which platform works best for your company. Your company may not have many Facebook followers, but it may still be worth having a presence there because there is a chance that you will find a loyal customer. In retrospect, it may be worth skipping some social platforms because it simply is not worth your time. 9. Create your own content This relates to my first tip – by creating unique content, you not only distinguish yourself from other sites, but your visitors will also appreciate the meaningful information you share. An excellent way to create your own content is by blogging, podcasts, ebooks and video. 10. Optimize your e-commerce for mobile users Keep in mind that your e-commerce needs to be optimized for mobile phones and tablets. Google announced that more people searched online via mobile and tablets than on standard desktop computers in 2015. The average order value via the mobile market increased by 15% between 2014-2015. Conclusion To ensure that your e-commerce site stays consistent on bringing traffic to your site – it’s important to understand what your customers want to see from you. It is also good to experiment with strategies and technology that can improve the overall experience and process in which you do things. By following these tips it will give you a better chance to boost your e-commerce and grow your business. Does your company use any of these tips or do you have any additional tips that will be helpful? Share it with us in the comments below.