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Developing a content marketing strategy for your business

Marianna Muscat - Tuesday, October 12, 2021
Developing a content marketing strategy for your business

Content marketing is not just about trying out various tactics and hoping they will benefit your business. Content must be used carefully and strategically to meet your business goals. A content marketing strategy is therefore vital to your success. How do you develop a content marketing strategy? Here is a step-by-step guide.

Who is your target audience?

The first thing you need to do is get very clear about exactly who you are trying to reach with your content. Do you have only one audience, or several audience segments? Whoever your ideal customers are, you must understand how to reach them and design your content accordingly. Once you completely understand your audience, you can choose the appropriate channels to reach them, as well as planning the content itself.

Define your main goal

What do you want your content marketing to do? Is your main objective simply to raise awareness of your business, do you want to build your list of potential leads, or are you more interested in converting the leads you already have? Although you will be tempted to try and develop content that serves multiple purposes, it is important that you narrow your focus.

Brainstorm ideas

Once you fully understand your audience and know exactly what you want to achieve with your content, you can start getting creative. Bring your team together and start throwing around ideas about topics, channels and tactics. At this stage, there should be no limit to the possibilities. All ideas should be considered. Once everyone has raised their suggestions, look at everything with your audience and objectives in mind.

Choose your content management system

It is very important that you choose an effective and easy-to-use content management system (CMS) to execute your strategy. CMSs enable you to handle creation, publication, analytics and more. There are many CMS options available, so choose the one that best suits your purposes and budget.

Publish, manage and maintain your content

Finally, it is time to take your content, put it out there and monitor the response. Draw up an editorial calendar to help you publish carefully planned, well-managed, balanced and diverse content. You should also create a social media content calendar to complement your main content.  

 

WSI New Media Marketing is a full-service digital marketing company in Greensboro, North Carolina. Contact us for expert help with your digital marketing campaigns, including developing an effective content marketing strategy and more.

The Content Marketing Funnel Sections and What They Mean

Marianna Muscat - Tuesday, October 5, 2021
Content Marketing Funnel Sections

Every piece of content you create for your website and other online platforms forms part of your content marketing funnel. Each communication is designed to move your audience members from one phase of the funnel to the next. Therefore, it is important to know what all the different sections of the funnel are, and how to create content for each one.

The content marketing funnel consists of four sections or phases, starting from the first interaction and progressing to the point where the prospect becomes a paying customer. These four sections are Awareness, Evaluation, Conversion and Delight. Let’s take a closer look at each one in turn.

Awareness

When potential customers first enter your funnel, you can safely assume that they are completely new to you, and have previously been unaware of your brand and what you do. At this initial stage, it is your job to make them aware of your products and their benefits. The awareness phase, also known as the Top of Funnel (TOFU) stage, is the point at which you educate your audience about who you are and what you do.

Evaluation

When your audience progresses to the middle of the funnel (MOFU), they reach the Evaluation stage. Here is where the audience members consider whether they really need your product or service. Your content thus moves beyond the introductory material to more in-depth discussions of your products’ benefits. Typical communications at this stage would include case studies, white papers, emails, events and webinars.

Conversion

If your customers have made it to the bottom of the funnel, they are clearly interested in your products. Now you have to give them reasons to buy. You can tell them about special offers and compare your products to those of your competitors, clearly highlighting the benefits you offer. Always make sure that you have a clear call to action and that you make purchasing as easy and attractive as possible.

Delight

The final part of the funnel is about retaining customers once you have converted them, keeping them happy and enabling them to provide feedback that will help you bring in more people like them. Your content should keep customers engaged and encourage them to interact and refer their friends.

WSI New Media Marketing is a full-service digital marketing company in Greensboro, North Carolina. Contact us for expert help with your digital marketing campaigns, including building and maintaining your content marketing, managing your social media marketing and more.

Creative Mobile Marketing Ideas Discussed

Marianna Muscat - Wednesday, September 8, 2021
Creative Mobile Marketing Ideas Discussed

Let’s take a moment to discuss some new SEO, digital marketing, social media marketing and mobile marketing ideas.

Few industries evolve as rapidly as mobile marketing. With consumer habits and mobile technologies changing so fast, your mobile marketing needs to stay a step ahead of your competitors and remain relevant with mobile users. According to industry forecasts, targeted mobile advertising spending in the United States is forecast to surpass $32 billion by the end of 2023.

One of the big trends for 2021 is conversational chatbots which respond to customer questions by mimicking human interaction through a combination of pre-programmed scripts and artificial intelligence. User Generated Content is also growing this year and can be a very powerful weapon in your mobile marketing arsenal; while social commerce and shoppable advertisements integrate commerce into the social media platforms for a seamless shopping experience.

Product Launches Using Mobile Marketing

As consumers upgrade devices to take advantage of carriers’ 5G technology, mobile marketers must be prepared to exploit its capabilities.

Using mobile marketing for a product launch just makes sense. You can easily define a target audience and marketing plan to expose your product to targeted users over time. You can target according to geographical area (by using geofencing) as well as many other demographic criteria, providing opportunities to tweak your message.

How Do You Measure the Success of Your Mobile Marketing Campaign?

At the start of the campaign, make your key performance indicators (KPIs) as a social metric for your success. KPIs work best when they can be measured frequently and are easy for everyone to understand and work with.

There are other quantifiable metrics you can use too: interaction rate, mobile payment methods, codes, and coupons; click-throughs from a mobile site to your regular site; click-to-call rate, retention rate, and behavioral differences which can easily be tracked through cookies.

Ensure that the various elements of your site infrastructure lead to mobile optimization. In other words, bear in mind – when designing your site and your campaigns – that consuming content on mobile devices is different than it is on a desktop. For example, you need shorter sentences, engaging headers, and relevant media, like high-quality images and videos. Make it easy for users to skim through content.

Forecasts indicate that targeted mobile advertising spending in the United States will surpass $32 billion by the end of 2023. Remember that your mobile marketing strategy is a crucial pillar of your overall marketing objectives.

To help you apply these ideas to your business, WSI New Media Marketing offers a wide range of mobile marketing and responsive web design services. Contact our friendly team now at 336.763.4006 or online.

Social Media Strategies Adjusting to Survive Post-Pandemic

Marianna Muscat - Wednesday, September 1, 2021
Social Media Strategies Adjusting to Survive Post-Pandemic

Where are you going with your SEO, digital marketing, social media marketing, mobile marketing post pandemic? Start by asking what baby boomers, Gen X, Millennials, and Gen Z are doing on social media.

During the pandemic, social media became critical to marketing. While spending on traditional advertising is on the decline, social media spending increased from 13.3% of marketing budgets in February 2020 to 23.2% in June 2020 — a 74% increase.

Social media platforms are now the main source of information and have surpassed print and other digital media platforms. The pandemic was a catalyst to the rise in social media usage with ever more people relying on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram to stay up to date – not to mention the explosion in TikTok.

Recommendations for a Post-Pandemic Future

Having a bold presence on Twitter, Facebook, or other social media platforms is vital. Social networks offer marketing strategies that give a unique ability to connect and bond with customers in meaningful ways.

If there’s one thing we learned in the pandemic, it was that agility and adapting quickly were the best traits marketers could exhibit. We saw more innovation than we have seen in decades, and this should continue. We should learn from our responsiveness and remember that it can save or pivot our businesses again in the future.

Undeniably, social media marketing provides you with a platform to brand, sell, and market your products and services.

A powerful social media marketing strategy must include a process for identifying new features and channels so that you can quickly create content for them. One such example is Instagram Reels, which has “reel-ly” taken off!

Today, research yields fast results so that you can pivot a campaign in no time at all. You can identify influencers and creators who resonate well with your audience and work with them to create engaging content.

This is a good time to give your ads, emails, videos, webinars, and podcast episodes an overhaul to let your customers know that you are in touch with their needs and ready to face a brave new post-pandemic world.

Do you feel you lack social media talent? No problem! WSI New Media Marketing and our agency partners can help you realize the true potential of social media and brand advocacy. Contact our friendly team now online or at 336.763.4006.

Digital-first compared to integrated marketing communication

Marianna Muscat - Wednesday, August 11, 2021

Many businesses today take a digital-first approach to marketing, either de-prioritizing traditional marketing or doing away with it altogether. The reality is that integrated marketing, employing methods from both approaches, is the most effective solution. In fact, the line between traditional and digital is starting to blur, meaning that integration is rapidly becoming the norm.

Mixed media platforms should be considered

A typical marketing campaign will consist of a variety of tactics working together towards a business’s goals. You may post blogs or vlogs on your website, while offering print collateral either in PDF format or in strategically chosen legacy media outlets, while also driving customers towards these through social posts. It is plain to see how traditional media tools are working seamlessly alongside digital ones. Most marketers will use these integrated approaches as a matter of course. Rightly so, since building a marketing plan around one method or platform is extremely limiting. You can still keep your digital platforms at the core of your marketing journey, while making clever use of wide-ranging conventional methods to help build awareness and drive your audience towards your digital platforms. 

Make use of these mixed media approaches carefully, looking for what works and utilizing it fully and thoughtfully. Digital media are rapidly evolving, effective, accurate and wide-ranging. Traditional methods, however, are still very effective for specific, targeted purposes. When you find the right mix, you are sure to enhance the power and effectiveness of your marketing efforts. The key is to find ways to enjoy the agility and versatility of digital media, while employing traditional tools to hit a mass audience and reinforce your brand. Remember that your customers are not limited to either traditional or digital media, but are exposed to varying combinations of both on a daily basis. Your approach should be equally flexible. Know your audience and research their media consumption habits to ensure that you create the ideal mix of digital and traditional media.

WSI New Media Marketing is a full-service digital marketing and search engine optimization company in Greensboro, North Carolina. Contact us for expert help with your SEO, social media marketing, and other digital marketing tactics and strategies.

Increase marketing visibility through SEO spiders

Marianna Muscat - Wednesday, August 4, 2021

You already know that search engine optimization (SEO) is one of the main pillars of your digital marketing. To help you refine your SEO efforts, it is worth digging a little deeper into what actually makes optimization work – and this brings us to SEO spiders.

Every major search engine has spiders – they are the bots that make SEO happen. It is the actions carried out by these bots that lead to the ranking of your web pages. It is vital, therefore, to understand how SEO spiders work and how to appeal to them. Once you do this, you will have a more thorough understanding of how search engines work, what they look for, and how to optimize your site accordingly.

What are Google SEO spiders and how do they work?

Every search engine uses spiders, but since Google currently dominates the search engine market, we will make it the focus of our discussion. A spider or crawler is a simple piece of software programmed to carry out a very specific purpose, going out across the internet to seek out particular pieces of information. Google has strict criteria regarding what it wants in a website in order to rank it highly. The spider’s job is to seek out these criteria and catalog web pages accordingly. 

Google’s spiders scan websites, gathering and storing data as they go. Their job is to determine the nature of web pages, as well as the quality of their content. Every new site that is launched will be crawled, analyzed and cataloged by one of Google’s myriad spiders. The data is then sent to the search engine to be indexed. When a search query is done, the results and rankings are generated from these indexes.

What do spiders look for? They start by downloading and analyzing the site’s robots.txt files, which tell them what pages can and should be crawled. They then check your links, using the internal ones to navigate around your website, and examining the outbound ones to see if you’re linking to your sources (affecting the search engine’s assessment of your content’s quality) and checking your backlinks from other websites. Then, they check your copy. This step is not simply a matter of scanning for keywords – the bots are programmed to assess the relevance, quality and authority of your content. The spiders then check your images. They are not advanced enough to understand what they are looking at when they see an image, so you need to include alt tags and titles that will explain clearly to the bots what they are looking at.

The importance of optimizing your website for SEO

Your website is in constant competition with those of other businesses in your industry, in a bid to attract audiences and generate leads and sales. Google is like the regulating body of this competition, and SEO spiders are the adjudicators that it sends out to see how the competitors measure up. It is therefore vital to optimize your website and know exactly what the spiders are looking for so that you can fulfill their criteria.  

To sum up, here’s what you need to do to make sure the SEO spiders score your site favorably:

  • Structure your site well, with a logical flow and hierarchy that the spiders can navigate easily – which is a good indicator that users will be able to do so too.
  • Do your keyword research and work the keywords into your content.
  • Focus on creating quality content that is accurate, well-researched, authoritative, and offers your audience value.
  • Optimize meta-descriptions and titles.
  • Add alt tags for images.
  • Make sure that all information regarding the name, address and phone number of your business is consistent throughout your web pages. 
  • Update your site regularly. Spiders don’t visit your site only once. They will continue to check and update Google’s indexes.

WSI New Media Marketing is a full-service digital marketing and search engine optimization company in Greensboro, North Carolina. Contact us for expert help with your SEO, social media marketing, and other digital marketing tactics and strategies.

Clever Mobile Marketing Strategies to Consider

Marianna Muscat - Monday, July 12, 2021

Mobile marketing is on the up-and-up thanks to the ubiquity of the smartphone. As a savvy marketer, you need to know what your options are, and figure out what is best for your business.

These ubiquitous phones can do more than the phones of yesteryear, so staying updated with the latest trends is essential. However, marketers must remember that not everybody has the very latest phone, so you need to cater to everyone to maximize your campaign’s reach.

How To Optimize Your Mobile Marketing

Here are five basic tips:

  1. Horses for courses” applies to social media marketing too. Every platform has its own limitations so don’t try to use the same material across channels that work differently. Also remember that social media marketing should be concise and instantly understandable. Consider data limitations for some users so have optional extensions for rich content.
  2. Create a clear call to action (CTA) so viewers can be converted to clients. Conversion rates can be improved by using only one CTA and avoiding navigation links that could be distracting. Go back to basics and use contrasting colours.
  3. Make your message stand out from the many others on every channel by being relevant and personal as well as designed for SEO. Use information you know about your customer like their names, previous purchasing data, etc. Add your personal signature too.
  4. Encourage two-way communication by enabling the receiver to instantly and easily reply to the campaign. In this way, you have opened a conversation from which you can glean data, receive valuable feedback and encourage loyalty.
  5. Use the data you obtain to continually test, measure, and improve.

Some Very Successful Mobile Marketing Campaigns Listed

One of the smartest digital marketing strategies of 2021 is Anheuser-Busch’s pivot from brewing beer to manufacturing hand sanitizer during the COVID-19 pandemic: They announced to the Twitterverse, “We have a long history of supporting our communities and employees – this time is no different. That’s why we are using our supply and logistics network to begin producing and distributing bottles of hand sanitizer to accommodate the growing needs across the United States.” This endeared the brand by reaching the hearts and minds of Americans.

Another ingenious mobile marketing campaign was the collaboration between dating app Tinder and British Football Club, Manchester City. By partnering with the men’s and women’s leagues, Tinder planned to interact with fans using games, AR experiences and stadium events. The global fanbase of the team pairs well with Tinder’s global reach (now in over 200 countries and 40 languages).

Take some inspiration from the brilliant campaigns out there and put your marketing creativity to the test. Anything is possible in today’s digital world.

Get in touch with New Media Marketing to help you set up mobile marketing strategies that deliver real ROI that improves your customer affinity and engages your employees.

 

What Business Owners Need to Know About Clubhouse

Marianna Muscat - Monday, July 5, 2021

Here’s what you need to know about how Clubhouse can enhance your social media marketing business.

What Is Clubhouse?

Clubhouse is a live audio app that works by invitation only. It works on both Android and IOS devices. It makes it possible for a user to go into a room and listen to what is being said and even participate in the conversation with up to 5000 participants. The feature that people really love about the app is that it does not save conversations. Once the conversation is over, the data disappears.

According to The Guardian, “The exclusive invitation-only social networking app is a hybrid of conference calls, talkback radio and Houseparty.”

How To Use Clubhouse For Your Business

It is great for networking and learning. When you are an audience member, it is easy to find like-minded people.

Meetings are simplified using this app and because it is audio, it doesn’t eat up too much data for those who are on the move.

By clicking on a person’s icon in a meeting, you can see the person’s bio. You are able to see how many followers they have, who those followers are and what interests the person has. You can also see what CLUBS this person is in. This type of easy-to-access data is invaluable for advertising and marketers.

There is an algorithm which makes a decision about what content to show you based on who you are following.

There is no private messaging on this app. A lot of the networking from Clubhouse happens off-platform, for example on Instagram and Twitter.

There are two ways to start a conversation: you can schedule one or spontaneously start one up. For marketers, this is a great way to be instantly responsive to happenings in the industry or the world at large. Social media marketing can be boosted by hosting talks by industry experts or launches without even having to go to the effort of planning a full-scale event.

Celebrities such as Elon Musk and Mark Zuckerberg have made appearances on Clubhouse. While in Europe,  its popularity was boosted when German podcast hosts Philipp Klöckner and Philipp Gloeckler started an invite-chain over a Telegram group, bringing German influencers, journalists and politicians to Clubhouse.  Reuters has reported that the demand for membership is now so high that a market for them has sprung up on platforms like Reddit, Craigslist and eBay.

It is time to add Clubhouse to your digital marketing repertoire. Contact New Media Marketing for more information on how this new social media marketing platform can create the emotional connections that improve customer affinity and retention and engage employees.

Digital data-driven strategies force marketing changes

Marianna Muscat - Tuesday, June 15, 2021
Digital data-driven strategies force marketing changes

One of the primary benefits of digital marketing, as opposed to traditional marketing methods, is that it enables accurate, data-driven strategies, in which marketing tactics respond directly to insights gathered directly from the measurement and assessment of consumer behavior. Data-driven marketing predicts the behavior of the public in relation to specific brands and products. Technological advancements allow for the collection of massive amounts of data, as well as the finely detailed sorting and analysis of that data which, in turn, can be used to plan and execute future marketing strategies.

The rapid development of data-driven strategies is continuously forcing marketing methods to develop, evolve and change course. The emphasis has always been on refining and even personalizing marketing efforts in order to reach specific groups, individuals and marketing personas. This remains the case, but the need to gather the necessary data must be balanced with consumers’ demand for privacy.

The expiration of the third-party cookie

Tracking tools, particularly third-party cookies, have been an important part of data-driven marketing. However, because consumers have protested so vehemently against the possible invasions of privacy that cookies enable, all of the leading search engines are withdrawing their support for these tracking tools. Google has announced that it will no longer support third-party cookies as of 2021.

Firefox has introduced advanced privacy protection tools, and Apple has hinted that its upcoming operating systems will do the same. Since cookies will soon be a thing of the past, digital marketers will have to find other ways to access customer data. Marketers will have to find ways to collect data with customers’ express consent. We will also have to tweak our content and segmentation strategies and demonstrate better care in our management and stewardship of customers’ data.

The benefits of an optimized marketing strategy

Considering the ongoing evolution of digital marketing and the changes that will continue to come as technology, consumer behavior, and data regulations shift, it is vital to have a responsive, optimized marketing strategy. Digital marketing allows you to reach your ideal customers through data-driven strategies. Every step of the way, you can optimize and adjust your strategy in line with the latest data. 

WSI New Media Marketing is a full-service digital marketing and search engine optimization company in Greensboro, North Carolina. Contact us for expert help with your SEO, social media, and other digital marketing tactics and strategies.

SEO tools to boost SERP rankings

Marianna Muscat - Wednesday, June 2, 2021

One of the most important goals of digital marketing is to boost search engine rankings through creative SEO strategies. There are several ways to do this, and the various methods are being constantly improved upon. While it is important to improve SEO rankings organically to a certain extent, by developing strong, relevant content, you can also use a variety of tools to help push your rankings on search engine results pages (SERPs). Let’s take a look at five of the best SEO tools currently available.

SEMRush SEO toolkit overview

SEMRush is a well-rounded toolkit for the overall management of digital marketing platforms. It contains tools that enable you to manage content, conduct competitive research, manage social media and carry out strategic and precise SEO strategies. The SEO component can be used to conduct market research and competitive analyses on your closest competition. You can get accurate reporting on what your competitors are doing with regard to rankings, keywords, and other factors, and develop your own SEO strategy accordingly. The toolkit includes several useful functionalities, including site auditing, position tracking, keyword research tools, backlink analytics, and more. 

Google search console overview

The Google search console overview provides the best way for you to track your SERP performance at a glance. It gives you a summary of all the most important metrics, including search performance, index coverage, and mobile usability metrics. Using this high-level overview, you can get an accurate picture of your performance and the areas in which you need to improve.

SEO Spider overview

SEO Spider was developed by a UK-based website search agency called Screaming Frog. It enables you to “crawl” through web pages and extract key information for SEO analysis. It is highly user-friendly and compiles and presents complex SEO information in a way that is easy to understand and interpret. Analyzing web pages with SEO Spider helps you to create and modify SEO strategies for best results.

Majestic SEO tools overview

Majestic SEO is a tool that specializes in link analysis. If your main aim is to analyze and understand backlinks with respect to your website, then Majestic SEO is the tool you need. In fact, Majestic claims to have the world’s best backlink checker. Unlike other tools on this list, Majestic SEO is not a comprehensive, all-in-one SEO tool; it is exclusively dedicated to link building. You can analyze your backlinks and devise a strategy to build more – and better – links. It measures backlinks with five different metrics: Trust Flow, which measures the quality of links to a particular website, Citation Flow, which measures the number of links connecting the website, Visibility Flow, which helps you find editorial-style links on sites with high Trust Flow rankings (as opposed to simple, directory-style links), and Topical Trust Flow, which measures the site against others with similar subject matter.

Moz Pro overview

Moz Pro is a comprehensive SEO toolkit with a range of functionalities for analyzing and improving SERP. Open Site Explorer and Keyword Explorer are two of the tools offered in the Moz Pro package, and they are particularly good for addressing the main issues of SEO. These tools enable you to gain valuable insights into your rankings and boost your SEO efforts in a strategic and targeted way. 

WSI New Media Marketing is a full-service digital marketing and search engine optimization company in Greensboro, North Carolina. Contact us for expert help with your SEO, social media, and other digital marketing tactics and strategies.

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