SEO

What is SEO & How Does It Relate to the Success of Your Business

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“SEO? What is that?” This seems to be a fairly common question that many businesses, especially new ones, are beginning to realize they need the answer to. Granted, they should know because it turns out that it is pretty important when it comes the the success of a business.

 

SEO Defined

Search Engine Optimization (aka SEO), can be defined in loose terms as the practice of increasing the quantity and quality of traffic to a website through organic search engine results. Many things can be done to improve website traffic and there are many methods to do so. Here are a few: using keywords, keyword analysis, backlinking and writing content that actual people want to read! For example, when people want to find something about computers built in South America, they type into google: “Computers built in South America”. If you want your website to pop up in the top results, using those keywords in the title and first few sentences of the article is a must! The more clicks a website gets, the higher in the search results it must, thus resulting in more website traffic. Using these clean methods is also known as White Hat SEO.

 

More Business? How?

You guessed it, the more website traffic the more business rolls in. It is all organic, which means no money has been put towards marketing the website through SEO. Although there are plenty of ways to get a website at the top of a page using paid ads, White Hat SEO is meant for a company or business that is looking for a long term commitment. If the company plans on sticking around for a while, this method is crucial to see real organic business growth. It is especially important for a business that might not have enough money to put towards paid advertising.

 

Why Do It?

Many lifestyle bloggers, travel companies, marketing agencies, etc use SEO consistently. Noticeably, many companies that are successful have great blogs and articles that create that momentum of organic traffic to their website. Once on the website, most people are prone to clicking around and seeing what the company has to offer. This results in more business just because the author of the article decided to use specific keywords in the title and body. Simple!

 

Although it seems like a simple concept, most companies struggle with finding a writer to do all of these thing. Luckily there are many plug-ins that websites offer to help with SEO and other items in order to improve organic reach. Realizing how imperative it is to begin this process is the first step in trafficking more business to your website! Companies that to wait to start doing this tend to suffer when it comes to website traffic and have to use more out of the marketing budget to pay for ads linking to their website! Save yourself some time and plan on making this a priority when creating a killer website.

 

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The Recipe for Success: Inbound Marketing for Interior Designers

If you are not immersed in the world of marketing, you might not be familiar with the differences between inbound and outbound marketing. You know that you want to drive traffic to your website and make sales, and have an idea about some strategies, but the details and complexities escape you. Here is an analogy we like to use to explain the difference:

Outbound marketing is like a telemarketer. They call your cell phone during dinner time and you listen to the automated message. It’s disruptive and, at times, annoying. Inbound is like that amazing window display at a store that makes you want to walk in. Inbound marketing is about bringing potential customers to you instead of you going to them. But much like traditional marketing, digital inbound strategies are complex, often requiring a full-fledged marketing plan. 

To set your inbound marketing goals, begin by assessing your current reach. Google Analytics is a great tool for understanding your key performance indicators. These might include: monthly unique website visitors, click conversion rates, and sources of traffic - PPC, SEO, blogging, social media, or email. Decide what you want to increase, and then create a plan for how to increase those metrics. What are the best three tools for doing that?

Blogging, social media, and search engines

Blogging

Top business blogs answer common questions their customers have. If your company consistently creates helpful content, it'll help establish you as an authoritative source for information. Imagine what happens when your customers start sharing your advice with their friends and family to answer questions and offer suggestions. As your scope of authority expands, so does your customer base. 

In addition, blogging is the best way to continually increase your website's SEO ranking. Each time you write a blog post, another page on your website is indexed. It also creates another opportunity for you to show up in search engines and drive organic traffic to your website.

Social Media

Social media sometimes gets a bad reputation in marketing because, for most businesses, it is not the marketing channel that directly drives a large percentage of sales. Email and SEO often outperform it. However, social media is the outlet most use for content discovery and new client interests. Social media is at the very top of the sales funnel and helpful for building prospective clients, building an audience, establishing your business as experts, and nurturing relationships. Despite the confusion surrounding the best way to leverage social media marketing for business performance, social media is not a one-way messaging platform. It is more like that window display we discussed in the beginning; it brings the customer to you and provides a natural platform for conversation.

Google Snippets Box

In the early 2000s, Google helped buyers find the answers to their questions by recommending countless links to potentially relevant information. It was during this time frame that SEO became one of the best inbound marketing strategies. Today, snippets and quick answer boxes reduce the amount of time spent searching through those links by serving up information--no click required. To have the very best SEO, companies should create content not just intended to rank, but also to be pulled into the snippets and quick answer boxes. This process combines a series of formatting strategies that are constantly changing as search engines update their algorithms. Experienced digital markers are usually the only people able to keep up with these trends. 

Inbound marketing is just one section of marketing but it is one of the best strategies that a company can use. For more formation about how to properly sell your brand's principals, email us at hello@adesignpartnership.com

Powerful PR in the Digital Age

Traditionally public relations (PR) was all about sending out press releases to magazines and newspapers. Getting noticed by the right company could skyrocket your business. And while the concept is still the same--put your company in the eyes of your potential clients and get noticed--the digital age, with the consumption of online media, has caused the paper magazines to be less cluttered with words as the magazines themselves get thinner and thinner. Public relations is moving online and the PR industry has been forced to adapt. It requires fresh ways to gain exposure leaving the traditional media in a dwindling state.

What has remained consistent is the need for unique content. These four strategies will help you to keep your content fresh and while implementing effective digital PR strategies for 2016 and beyond:

1.     Ladder Up - Laddering up is a strategy described inTraction: A Startup Guide to Getting Customers, a book based on Weinberg’s experience as the CEO and founder of search engine DuckDuckGo. It works like this: You present your company to small blogs that are related to your niche, who will be most likely to write about you. Then you can take those stories and post them to popular sharing sites such as Reddit. If they perform well, they’ll be likely to be picked up by larger blogs.

2.     Tell your Story Faster - Everyone skims. As we consume more, we must consume information faster. Therefore, fewer and fewer of your audience members will want to take 30 minutes to read long posts or 15 minutes to watch a video. When crafting your story,  include content that can be digested quickly. Use infographics, photos, short videos ( no longer than 30 seconds), and quick facts. The less time your information requires to consume, the easier it is to get noticed.

3.     Reach out to Influencers - Sometimes a more efficient way to reach your audience is to partner with people they already trust and have them help share your message. This is called influencer marketing. Influencers are individuals who have a lot of followers online, usually 15k+, and share with their followers regularly. With this strategy, It is just as important as traditional PR to identify the individuals with the right audience. What differs the most is the way you engage with bloggers. Typically you have to offer them a unique offer or experience in return for sharing your content or company.

4.     Use Unconventional Press - This means anything you could do that would result in a huge amount of publicity without you having to make an effort for it to spread, even if that publicity is negative. Sometimes this is also called guerilla marketing. For examples of this, look up Unicef’s dirty water campaign, or Blendtec's “Will it blend?” video series. They are easy to talk about. How can you do something outlandish that fits with your product and draws attention to it? How can you shock or amuse while advertising your company at the same time?

Now more than ever, it is easier for small businesses to get involved in PR. You have the same access to influencers and audiences as big brands, and all you have to do is concentrate on getting the right type of content into the hands of the right media outlet or influencers. For a digital PR consultation, contact us at: hello@adesignpartnership.com