Effective Social Media Strategies For 2018

 

The new year is here and if you have not yet completed the social media strategy for your business, now is the ideal time to do so. I understand that it can be overwhelming at first, but you’ll truly profit by having one in the long haul.

Obviously, some things will be added or modified as the year goes on which means your strategy needs to adapt to changes. Social media itself is probably not going to continue as before for the next 12 months either. Be that as it may, having a definite strategy for your social media right this moment can truly enable you to recognize what needs to accomplish moving forward and choose how you will accomplish it.

To help you get started with your social media strategy, here are some important subjects that often get asked, alongside a few answers:

What is a social media strategy? Do I really need it?

To put it plainly, a social media strategy resembles a business plan, but exclusively made for your social media activities. Upon getting started, it’s unlikely that you have a solid idea and you will probably just post whatever goes into your mind that day. You may spend countless hours mindlessly scrolling the timeline, giving the occasional “like” here and there. You may even schedule a couple of posts about your services or products and add a few links back to your site.

Being active on social media is already a big thing, but we all know that it can be a huge drain on your time. Here’s where social media strategy comes into place. Rather than aimlessly liking, posting, and retweeting, all your activities on the social media should be carefully planned out and push towards accomplishing your main goals.

How to create a solid strategy for social media?

A social media strategy can be as brief or as detailed as you prefer. However, the more time you spend in your strategy, the more you will get out of it in the long run. There’s no right or wrong way of composing a social media strategy, so do whatever you feel is the most profitable to you and your company.

What does it include?

The objectives: The primary task you need to do is decide on your objectives and goals. These should normally fit with your overall marketing plan so that your efforts on social media will help accomplish your comprehensive marketing goals.

The review: After that, you must evaluate your current online presence. Consider questions like
“How many followers do we have?”
“How often do we share quality content?”
“What type of content are we currently posting?”

It can also be profitable to observe your key competitors and ask yourself the same inquiries. This is a decent method to perceive the strong points—as well as the weak points—of your competitors so that you’ll know what to do and what to avoid.

social media platforms

 

The research: Take a look at your business accounts and consider which social media platforms you need to focus on. Before deciding anything, you should be clear on who your target audience is and the key demographics of different social media platforms. You can also examine which channels your competitors are performing well on.

Also, remember that it’s important to focus more on quality, and not just quantity. While there are so many channels to choose from, you may not be able to provide all of them the attention needed, so it may be better for you to prioritize the most important ones. Additionally, it is also important to have your username consistent across all your channels. This way, your audience can easily find you on various social media platforms.

The posting details: Consider how frequently you should post on each social media channels and what that content ought to be. Your strategy should also contain essential hashtags that can attract more target audience. Don’t just put in random ones as it can draw in spam accounts that may have a negative effect on your brand.

The evaluation: One significant thing to consider is how you’ll measure your progress to see if all your efforts are paying off. In any case, it’s also crucial not to focus on your number of followers and get too caught up in metrics. Despite the fact that you do need to grow your follower count so as to hold a voice, it is more necessary to ensure that your social media efforts truly help to gain brand awareness.

When to start planning a social media strategy?

It can be beneficial to begin the year with a fresh start and a definite plan of action. If you have been delaying the chance to create a social media strategy for your business, NOW is the right time to start. It does not have to be lengthy and complicated—it just needs to give more direction and centre towards all your future social media activities.

Boosting Your Sales Through Social Media Marketing

Social media is truly disrupting the world of marketing. After all, there are more than 3.8 billion people all over the world who use the internet and that number is still rapidly increasing over time. Of those people, over 2.4 billion of them are active on various social media platforms.

That’s the reason why your brand needs to be on social media as well. However, before you mindlessly hop on different platforms hoping to sell your products and services, take a step back and consider creating a solid strategy first. Listed below are some of the things you need to do before working on your first campaign:

I. General Marketing Strategy
Setting a general marketing strategy can definitely help promote your marketing efforts, which in turn can help you gain a return on investment. Here are some of the most useful marketing techniques that you should consider using:

· Email Marketing
· Content Marketing
· Affiliate setup or Influencer Marketing
· SEO (Search Engine Optimization) and Marketing

II. Digital Marketing Plan
A solid digital marketing plan is needed, which must cover all of the things correlated with your online presence, such as your website, online advertising, email list, and many more. You should distinguish what you want from your campaign. Think about the answers to these questions:

· Web Traffic: Who do you want to attract?
· Conversions: What conversion rate do you anticipate?
· Engagement: How do you want to connect with your potential clients?
· Brand improvement: How do you like to position your label or the image of your brand?

gathering engagements

III. Utilizing Social Media to Increase Sales
· Find out how clients see your brand
· Reach out to new potential customers
· Learn how the brand is situated among existing clients

Also, here are some of the useful metrics that can enable marketers to evaluate their social media marketing efforts:

· Yield: Discover how much your clients pay for your products/services.
· Reach: How many new customers and leads would you like to include each month?
· Frequency: Check the number of customers buying your products or availing your services.

Starting Your Social Media Campaign

After doing all that work, you’re now ready to start your campaign. Here are the steps you’ll need to take:

social media

1. Choose the platforms where you want to invest your time.
There are several social media platforms and each of them is unique.

Also, not all those platforms function equally for all types of brands. As a social media marketer, you need to learn the essence of your brand along with how people respond to various social media channels. You should determine the best social media platforms beneficial to your brand, and prioritize them in order to get a fair return on investment.

2. Design unique landing pages.
Making a good first impression is critical for any brand. All the designs and images on a website help build a positive outlook among potential clients. Generate unique and useful information for each of your platforms to achieve a better outcome from your campaigns.

By recognizing the essence of different social media platforms, you must produce unique landing pages that can help establish a positive impression, which can then lead to conversion.

3. Regularly engage.
Social media advertising is entirely diverse from other forms of advertising. Your audience needs to be constantly served with fresh content to keep your brand active on social media. One way of attaining this is by seeking out and sharing popular images, videos, and relevant news to post to your channels. You must also diversify the content to stimulate interest.

Lastly, it should always be your goal to position your company as an interactive brand among your potential clients in order to gain more deals. May these tips help you in achieving a strong social media strategy for the new year!
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web designers

Why All Web Designers Need A Marketing Plan

 

When you started your web design business, you were probably thrilled about the idea of creating something you love each day. But in reality, you’ll quickly realise that you’d only be designing for about 30% of the time, and the other 70% will significantly involve admin and marketing works.

Most creative people feel that a marketing plan would stifle their creativity. After all, following a terribly long, boring plans is too bothersome, so most of us don’t bother with it.

Here’s the thing though: without a solid marketing plan, your first year in the business will be slow and agonising.

Keep in mind that marketing plans don’t have to be long and tedious! You don’t have to fill your plan with big words and formal sentences. To put it simply, your marketing strategy can be in whatever form you want it to be: it can either be a spreadsheet, a one-page Word document, a board of post-its, or even a simple diagram.

Here are some of the best reasons why you really need to have a solid marketing plan for your business:

marketing strategy

 

It pushes you to broaden your marketing strategy

If you’re still a novice designer, I’m guessing you have no solid marketing plan as of the moment, and you still rely on your clients finding you through referrals instead.

Don’t worry though; we’ve all been there. But then I realised that relying on referrals alone is not really a smart move. When you take some time to sit down and create your own marketing plan, you’ll be forced to think of creative and imaginative ideas to market your services. You’ll be surprised at the strategies you think of!

marketing plan

 

You’ll remember to promote your services

Without a solid marketing plan, you won’t have any strategies to work on each day of the week. Even though you probably have a few marketing ideas in mind, you’ll likely end up not doing those things because you haven’t written them down and created a plan from those ideas. Thinking about them is one thing, but actually doing them makes a big difference.

It lessens the risk of failure

Even spending twenty minutes on different marketing plan each day will still make a big difference for your business. If you do it right, the number of inquiries you receive each week will increase, and so will your website traffic!

Web designers in London greatly recommend you to utilise various strategies, so that if one suddenly fails to work, you can still rely on the other ones to make sure you always have a steady stream of clients!
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content marketing strategy

How To Evaluate The Effectivity Of Your Content Marketing Strategy

 

Content marketing is one of the most effective forms of online marketing, but only when you begin gaining active participation does it start to take on meaning. That particular engagement can then tell you about the direction and quality of your strategy; it basically serves as a form of feedback.

It measures how efficient your current plan is, and it’s also an indication of where it should grow. They are particularly important for gauging the status, diagnosing, as well as the needs of your content— but only if you know where to look.

These are some of the most important things that measure the effectiveness of your content marketing strategy:

The Likes and Reactions

Though these figures seem to be subtle feedbacks that usually takes place on social media platforms— unless when you’re publishing on a client’s site that features a similar feature— they’re still an important indicator.

For some, these may not seem like a valued measurement of the content’s quality, but you can use it as a basis for determining how engaged or interested your audience is with one post/article versus another. If you notice that certain posts are getting more likes and reactions than others, it would be best to engage those type of posts further.

The Comments

Comments are by far the most strong responses that can show you just how interesting or engaging your content is. Though it’s not always an entirely reliable indicator, more comments mean your content is more intriguing to a greater number of people.

A blog post without any comments may mean that your content isn’t stimulating enough, but this also depends on the current amount of traffic your site has. On the other hand, utilise the comments to look for qualitative evaluations of your work— your readers may praise you for bringing in certain details to light.

The Number of Shares

Shares are another form of measurement on how to gauge your article’s success. People share articles when they read something unique, interesting, useful, or something that makes them feel a powerful emotion. You should aim to create content that achieves one of these goals— after all, earning a high number of shares means greater traffic, greater visibility, and more authority for your website.

The Conversion Rate

Lastly, you should measure your content’s ability to convert readers because it is still an essential tool to help your site gain more revenue.

If your articles and blog posts are drawing more people in, but those people are not converting, there’s probably a hiccup in your content marketing strategy that needs to be addressed. You can always track your conversions on the back end of your site, or even establish goals in Google Analytics; however you decide to do it, take note of your most successful articles and change something if your current strategy fails to promote more conversions over time.

Ultimately, you have to remember that your readers and followers are the ones responsible for making your efforts a success— so don’t make the biggest mistake of ignoring them.
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things you need to remove from your site

Top Things You Need To Remove From Your Website

 

If your website’s a little dull and boring— don’t worry, you’re not the only one. Today, we’re going to tackle some of the things that you immediately need to remove from your website.

If your site was designed a few years back, there’s probably a list of things on there that you’ll do better without. Some of its features might make you look outdated, and some are actually security risks!

Here are the things you need to consider getting rid of:

The Obvious Stock Photos

Photos, especially high-quality ones, have definitely been shown to boost engagement and conversions— but if they’re not considered to be genuine by your audience, particularly with the millennials, they’re just not going to buy it.

Not only are they cliché, but when people see them and know they’re stock photos, they’ll likely leave your site and won’t trust your brand. Instead, you can choose to do either of these things:

Custom Photography- If you have a budget for that, then do it. Make use of high-resolution photos like pictures of your staff members or the interior of your office— that kind of thing.

High-quality stock photos- You may still use them, but you have to choose very carefully. There are actually newer versions of stock photos that do not seem as cliché as the old ones do. They may still be a little scripted and corporate, but most of them have that authentic look and Instagram-worthy photos. Choose wisely.

social media

 

The Social Media Icons In Your Header

I know you want to get more followers on all your platforms that’s why you placed those icons in your header. However, the problem with having them in such a prominent place is they’re noticeable and brightly coloured.

Here’s the thing, you’ve pumped up your efforts to draw in people to your website, and now you’re just inviting them to leave. When you put those icons in such a prominent location, you’re really just luring them away from your website and onto your social media platforms— which you may think is a great thing. But then again, what happens on social media? They’ll see posts from their friends, and the tendency is they’ll get lost in the process, and they’ll probably forget to come back to your site.

The solution? Make use of social widgets instead. These widgets allow people to tweet about you, or like your page, or share your post, all within the environment of your website. They’re still buttons— just a smarter version.

The Email Links

If you have bio pages for your staff or anything similar to that, a pervasive thing most website owners do is to include a link to their emails. Here’s the problem with that: they attract email spam which can also be a security risk, as most hackers use emails as their point of entry.

Top Web Design agencies recommend using email forms instead. Emails sent using forms are more convenient because they’re traceable so that you can route them into various folders and sub-folders with your email program. You can also filter out client requests from intern applications, so you know what you’re looking at.

The Suggested Videos

This one is a little more under the radar. You may not be familiar with it, but if you use videos anywhere on your site, it would be wise to disable the YouTube suggested videos.

What happens is, at the end of a YouTube video, there are some pretty exciting “suggestions” for other related videos you might want to watch. Now they can just be random and unrelated videos— but you have considered the probability that they could be showing videos of your competitors.

Here’s an easy fix for that problem: Click the share option from the video player on YouTube, then click ‘embed’, then choose ‘show more’ which will open up more options for you. After that, scroll down and uncheck the option ‘show suggested videos when the video finishes. From there, grab the newer version of the embed code, and you’re all set!

Utilize these tips to make your website even more functional and user-friendly!
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promoting-your-website

How To Properly Promote Your Website

 

If you want to promote your website beyond search engines, we highly recommend a website promotion strategy that involves both traditional and web marketing initiatives.

How To Attract Online Visitors

Web marketing is all about gaining more visitors to your website. There are a lot of low-budget yet effective internet marketing strategies that are really proven in stimulating traffic.

Social media

One of the best ways to market your website is through social media. Developing strategies that will create an interest on Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, blog, LinkedIn, and other social media sites can definitely increase the recognition of your brand and website.

Making an email newsletter

Enabling visitors to share their email addresses in order to receive information from you is also an effective way of marketing. That is why an e-newsletter is a must-have promotional tool. This newsletter doesn’t have to be lengthy, it can also be sent just once a month and yet it will still be effective.

Create a video

A lot of people use the Internet to search for certain information, as well as for watching an informative video presentation. You can either make a “how to” videos or any topic that co-relates your brand or business. Remember to mention your website in the video and post it on YouTube, and then share it on your other social media accounts. Using videos to further promote your website has the potential to amp the traffic to it.

 

Website Marketing Tips

 

Writing a blog

Incorporating a blog to your website is a good way to draw in more visitors. But for a blog to really be successful, you’ll need to provide quality content that’s more informative rather than promotional, for at least once a week. This is another way of interacting with your audience and sharing information with them, thus, making them feel involved.

Exchange Links

Incoming links not only helps your website’s popularity in search engine rankings, but they also help drive more traffic to your site from other websites. Definitely, think about exchanging your website URL with other popular and reputable websites. Consider both free and paid directories like Yahoo Directory, Open Directory Project, About.com and Business.com. Another way is through reciprocal links with other websites that complement your services or products.

Share Your Expertise

There are numerous blogs, email newsletters, and websites whose editors are always looking for content from expert sources. Think about writing articles for such sites and offer them a free content in exchange for a link to your website, as well as a brief description of your business.

Pay-Per-Click

Paid search marketing is one of the top-grade forms of targeted marketing on the Web. When used well, it could invite more and more people to your website, and result in an increase of sales or other calls of action you’re seeking. Pay-Per-Click is fairly affordable and has a good track record of returning desired results.

Try out these practical tips on how to spread the word about your site!
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the-about-us-page

Stepping Up Your ‘About Us’ Game

 

The About Us page is perhaps the most overlooked and neglected page on a website. The content is dull and the design is basic, it only contains enough information to guarantee a visitor that the company or business is authorized and legitimate. Most About Us section is not the best-looking page on a website because businesses invest better effort and more attention to the rest of the site design. Remember though, it turns out that this page is one of the most essential web pages on a site.

According to numerous studies on website interaction, this page is among the top pages that get visited by potential clients. It plays an important part in whether a visitor continues to browse the rest of the site or just hit the exit button. After all, the About Us section establishes trust, history, and legitimacy for the company and is a key factor for converting sales and driving business.

So what makes an effective About Us page? Here are some key points to step up your game by increasing its value and more significantly, gaining more clients.

Creating and Writing About Us Page

Keeping it concise and real

Using business buzzwords and corporate jargon are such turn-offs for the readers. Visitors need to know the people behind the company, as well as the necessary information about your business.

The greatest way to gaining their trust and making a great connection with your visitors is to put a human face on the company or its brand. Write something that truly conveys what your business does, in a natural and authentic voice.

Another great strategy of connecting with your visitors would be to tell the story about how the idea came about to start-up your business, services/products, as well as the people that mentored and inspired you along the way. Creatively convey your thoughts by using words that are emotive and descriptive to paint a mental picture of your journey into creating your business. Integrating real photos that relate to your own narrative adds more interest to the page and helps validate the legitimacy of your brand.

Celebrating the core values

The primary purpose behind the About Us section is to provide essential information regarding your brand; such as its very own mission and goals, how long it’s been in existence, as well as the target market your company serves. One method of portraying these details in a client-focused approach is to include your company’s core values in a very pleasing manner.

Web design methods that effectively and creatively present your core values is by attaching a video that features the owner/s of the business, along with the employees, its management team, and even actual customers. Another technique is by incorporating written reviews made by real clients (complete with each person’s name and location, or a slideshow of images that portrays your brand.

Your core values should distinctly show how the work culture and value system of your company benefits the consumers.

About Us Section

Promoting your milestones and achievements 

The About Us page is the perfect place to exhibit your community involvement, accomplishments, and milestones in a manner that imparts consumer-focused achievements (or in a non-bragging manner). Promoting your company’s achievements can be done by utilizing various web design techniques such as with photos, slideshows, or even in a short video presentation.

Recognition and achievements add credibility and authenticity to your business. It also shows your commitment to the community and makes your business more attractive to potential clients.

Keeping it up-to-date

It’s important to consistently update this section in order to keep it up-to-date. Whenever something new happens at your company, be sure to place it in a timely fashion. Keeping the About Us page current shows your web visitors that your business is always active, and consistently working to improve for its clients. Let it be known that your business is focused on growth.

Fascinating content and design

If your page lacks personality, the ultimate solution for that is by creating exciting content and having a creative web design. With an effective balance of web layout that doesn’t deflect from the content of that page, you create an experience that your visitors will remember. An effective About Us requires content and design to work together, in order to seamlessly present the integral vision of your company in an attractive way.

With a more authentic About Us page, your visitors will get to understand and trust your company even more. These two qualities are very significant in doing business.
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add-traffic-to-your-site

Helpful Ways To Build Traffic To Your Website

 

It’s now time to implement strategies that will effectively build traffic to your website. Here are some ways on how to do it without all the hassle. Best of all, these methods are 100% free!

Become A Helpful Resource

The majority of people searching online are either looking for specific information on a certain topic or help with solving some problem. Similarly, you want your website to be a helpful resource to your visitors, while at the same time carrying out its main goal, whether it’s selling services or products.

Your web pages are significant to building your website traffic. The information within your site can be used to draw in more visitors, and once there, they will likely explore the rest of your website and even submit a form, make a purchase, join your e-newsletter, or whatever call to action your site seeks.

Here are some tips on how to make your website a helpful resource:

Assess the content of your web pages. Is it of value to your visitors and potential clients?
Look into the common questions or problems that customers are finding answers to, which are related to the industry pertaining your website and list them all.

Utilizing the list you just made, add content to your website to address those problems or frequently asked questions. You can opt to have these web pages linked to the page from corresponding text already on your website, or in the Resource section of your website.

Content Marketing

This simply means getting more traffic to your website through its web pages, and not just its home page. Web analyses have shown that although a home page is essential for branding purposes, the number of visitors come to a website by landing on its other pages because the content within those pages matches their search.

That is why content marketing is all about supplying information that is actually valuable to people so they would be encouraged to click-through your other pages and explore your website in general. The ultimate goal of content marketing is to build customer loyalty by initially gaining the trust of online consumers so they would feel secure in doing business with you.

The key to building site traffic through content marketing is providing interesting, informative, relevant and quality content that people want to read and delivering that content in the most commonly used places they would search for it.

The most successful content marketing strategy is a mix of various tactics that include:

I. Online Marketing (webinars, eBooks, press release, white papers, help guides or how-to, and case studies)
II. Social Media Marketing (videos, articles, newsletters, social networking sites, and infographics)
III. Direct Contact (in-person appearances, telephone marketing, demos and testimonials)

Continually Add New Content

Search engines definitely love websites that regularly update their content. One way to continually add contents is by incorporating a blog on your website. A blog is a good way to deliver trends pertaining to your business or current industry information, and even for going more in-depth about frequently asked questions from your visitors and clients.

Add a new posting to your blog around twice a week or more; seek help from your staff members or interns who can assist with writing the articles if you’re perhaps too busy to do them yourself. Just remember to provide helpful information to your customers, in order to draw in more traffic to your website.

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KeyRulestoProperlyGovernYourBusiness

Three Key Rules to Properly Govern Your Business

 

These days, just being plain good won’t save your brand if you have a dreadful customer service. So let’s take look at what your company can do in order to build a strong, respected brand within your field of choice.

When every proof of concept, spreadsheet, and meeting note is put aside, everything should fall down to three key rules that determine how you should govern your business so that you, as well as your brand, can continuously prosper:

First; add revenue before you start cutting costs.

Usually, when it comes to smaller start-ups and businesses, cutting costs is more expensive than adding revenue. So if your opinion of saving money is to let half of your employees go, you should really reconsider that thought. Cutting into the muscle is almost always more expensive, which means it could be more difficult to recover, and eventually, your brand suffers. Always be sure to look at the budgets with the long-term in mind.

Second; do it appropriately, not cheaply.

Being cheaper than the rest of your competitors isn’t always a good thing. Creating a stronger brand that’s known for having high-quality service or goods, will gain a lasting impression than just being known for having low prices.

Recessions will come and go, so while the cheap alternative may look appealing right now, when customers do have more money to pay for quality goods and/or services, guess which brand will they remember? The one that never compromised nor wavered its quality.

Third; remember why you’re in this business in the first place.

You don’t necessarily have to write a mission statement, but when it comes to making the difficult decisions, having both your management team and employees know what your brand is all about can definitely help your business grow faster and a whole lot quicker.

However, if you’re feeling like you’re going against your brand’s vision or goal, just remember to be strong enough to look back to where you began.

May these three key rules help guide your daily choices and will go far in assuring that your brand is going in the right direction. Whatever business you do, always be sure to do it right.

Here in MLA Web Designs, we’ll help you get there! Contact us to know more.

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exciting-update-by-google

An Exciting Update By Google Just Went Live

 

Just recently, Google launched an exciting new feature to help you find the best answers to your everyday questions from publisher content throughout the entire web. They call it sentence-compression algorithms.

An in-depth article explained how Google is now using a hand-fed AI that could interpret and create featured pieces in the Google search results. The best part is– it gives answers, not just your typical search results.

The famous search engine just went live on their desktop search results with this feature called to be “sentence-compression algorithms”. This distinctive attribute is able to pick up how to take a long paragraph or sentence from any relevant pages on the entire web and pull out the upshot, or mainly the information that you’re looking for, as what the article said.

To sum it up, Google is getting better and better at searching for contents on the web and taking out the particular set of information that directly answers the topic being asked.

The question is; how did they get this to work?

According to the article from Wired: To train the artificial Q&A brain of Google, Orr and company used old news stories, where machines begin to see how headlines serve as brief summaries of the lengthy articles that follow. For now, the giant company still needs its elite team of PhD linguists.

They not only exhibit sentence compression but literally label parts of speech in some ways that enables the neural nets to understand how the human language functions. With about 100 PhD linguists throughout the globe, it is expected for the team and this feature to continue to grow in the years to come.

With Google Assistant, Google Home, and the growth of featured snippets in the search results, it is no surprise that this famous search engine is continuously advancing their technology around this challenge.

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