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Remote Resourcing: Tap into a Rich Pool of Digital Marketing Talent

Remote Resourcing: Tap into a Rich Pool of Digital Marketing Talent | Digital Marketing | Scoop.it
Are you planning to work remotely? You should know all ins and outs of this model.
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What Do the Best Bloggers Have in Common?

What Do the Best Bloggers Have in Common? | Digital Marketing | Scoop.it
Ever imagine what are the things that most successful bloggers have in common? Let's find out..
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Rank Your Blog with This Keyword Research Method

Rank Your Blog with This Keyword Research Method | Digital Marketing | Scoop.it
Is your blog struggling when it comes to ranking? Umar Khan offers a keyword research method to help.
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Blogging Commandments: Don’ts to Abide by

Blogging Commandments: Don’ts to Abide by | Digital Marketing | Scoop.it
Starting a blog requires a lot more than meets the eye, especially the novice’s eye. All the interesting stuff you read on the web isn’t something bloggers just dream up and start going tapity-tap on the keyboard. Good blogging requires a great deal of trial and error, as well as patience and the ability to really get in touch with your inner-intellect and the audience’s needs. It’s also a great learning experience for budding writers who have a thing or two to share with everybody as far as a hobby or extensive knowledge on a particular subject is concerned. We’re going to discuss some common mistakes, traps if you will, that novice bloggers tend to fall in. Even though there’s no guarantee you won’t fall into them yourself at some point, at least you’ll approach problems and challenges with a more cautious and self-aware stance, while making the most of your learning experiences. Don’t be a Copycat If your content doesn’t come off as genuinely unique, people will have little reason to check out your page on a regular basis. Even though at some point, you might find yourself rehashing some content people may or may not already be aware of, it is important to infuse your unique take and approach on the subject matter. If you’re under the notion that it’s okay to recycle trending stories and stick them straight into your blog, it isn’t. It is however, okay to borrow content from a few sources and add your own angle and opinion to it. In most cases, you should mention those sources. People love opinions, debates and a little bit of controversy. Use that to your advantage. Providing intelligent conclusions at the end or speaking of the underlying moral will always have readers coming back for more. Don’t Overlook Legal Issues Make certain mistakes, and you might find yourself tripping around in a legal minefield. Look at it in terms of trademarks, copyright, illegality and defamation. And you certainly don’t want to trip over this mine: going with research sources while failing to back it up with at least two or three other sources, adding hearsay like there’s no tomorrow. If you’re not entirely sure, it’s always good to include multiple sources that complement your assertions. Take a look at the Electronic Foundation Frontier to get to know some legal information pertaining to blogging. Don’t Just Copy/Paste Any Writing Style When it comes to blog-writing, you need to approach it with a fairly open mindset. If you’ve been writing articles using a technical, formal or academic style, all that must go out the window. Blog writing is strictly conversational, and informal in pretty much all cases. You’ll be peppering it down with your own opinion, no matter how outrageous it may seem, but it needs to be something interesting, something that strikes a chord or two with the audience. The best-suited writing style comes down to your audience and what kind of content they like reading. Even if …
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Keeping Your Customers Engaged Once They’ve Left the Building

Keeping Your Customers Engaged Once They’ve Left the Building | Digital Marketing | Scoop.it
We live in an age of “always online” and social media madness. You go on vacation, and all your Facebook friends get to see you having fun at the beach and luxurious resorts, amid non-stop likes and comments. Got a raise at work recently? Can’t help but tweet (boast more or less) about it, can you? Did you know there are just over 3 billion interactions on Facebook and more than half a billion tweets published on a daily basis? That’s really saying something. The bottom line is that social media is a real and highly fruitful channel for customer acquisition and retention. Not just that, but it can really help you understand your customer at a more intimate level. Its irrefutable power to better serve and acquire customers cannot be denied, however, it isn’t the only reliable means of moving your offline customer following to online. Move Your Mailing Lists Online If you happen to have a list of customer names with mailing addresses who you interact with on a regular basis, it makes sense to move them online. For one thing, there are no costs involved, so the economic advantage of keeping in touch through day-to-day emailing is something you wouldn’t want to ignore. Credit: USPS This isn’t to say that you should discard your postal mailing lists altogether. Special occasions call for sending out postal mails, so you might want to keep it for those special days of the year. Want to seamlessly move your mailing list online? Here’s what you should do: Send your offline list a postcard, coaxing them to claim a gift online or other “free and highly valuable incentives” As customers go online, they should be asked to provide their active email address Once they have acquired the free information, prize/points or giveaway, they see a “thank you” page On this page, they might be given the option to avail additional points or another gift, giveaway, valuable info etc. Also consider giving them a choice between giveaways, gifts and free high-value information By taking the above steps, we’ve accomplished a few things: Your most frequent customers are going to be online soon enough Your postal mailing list gets cleaned up as you’ve offered to send them giveaways while acquiring their email addresses By offering choices on the Thank You page, you’re chances of getting responses as well as updated mailing addresses are higher A word on post cards: these can also have call-to-actions at the end asking customers to register for an e-newsletter. Include a URL which leads them to your sign up form. The more savvy customers will definitely welcome a QR code which links to the sign up form. Here’s another way of getting your customers to opt into your e-newsletter; let’s say you own an auto retail business, and your customer has to choose between service plans. As part of your regular sales process, you could ask them to sign-up for an e-newsletter that offers extras such as car care and maintenance tips, improving engine performance and mileage etc. This e-newsletter effectively positions you as an expert who really cares about how customers get the most out of their products. Common Best Practices for Moving Your User Base Online Data Capture If you have a brick and mortar business, should you be keeping away from online business practices, due to having low expectations in terms of growth? Absolutely not! Many tend to identify online marketing with online businesses only and view any online activity with a fair amount of skepticism. This is simply not true. Online and social media marketing done the right way can have highly positive effects on your in-store sales. Credit: Moz For example, when it comes to better understanding your customer, you can use certain data capturing techniques to get the job done. Data collection and analysis helps you determine customer behaviors, preferences and demographics. This crucial data can be assimilated from several sources including CRM (customer relationship management) systems, third parties, search and social. Ask Around When customers visit you at the store or place of business, ask them if they use social media on a frequent basis. If they do, ask them what channels appeal to them the most and why? Perhaps, some or most of them don’t use any of them, but you need to know.   Those who are using social media, ask them how they would like to be engaged on their favorite channels. This not only gives you valuable insights so as to how you can improve their social media experience, but also motivates them to engage with you more online. You could ask the same in emails or e-newsletters as well and it will only go to show how much you care about your customers’ needs. A good idea still is to attach a brief feedback form with the email having no more than 6- 10 questions asking customers what they think of your brand and service. Embrace Social Media Monitoring A very simple and free way of monitoring daily happenings in your industry and pinpointing where your customers are online is Mention; a tool that helps you track a particular discussion or topic every time it gets mentioned on the internet. Just to give you an example, you have the ability to monitor if either you or the business is being mentioned anywhere on the web. You can even stay on top of industry news. Anytime there’s a mention on the specified topic, you are emailed, along with a link to the search result. Can this help you find customers on social media? Absolutely! Perhaps you’re a clothing business specializing in kids’ garments. You may have a small, rather humble social presence but you want to expand and get all of your existing customers to follow you online, and ideally acquire new ones in the process. The only caveat is you’re not sure which channels your customers are on, including your prospective audience. Google Alerts will help you find the desired information. So you enter the search query “most comfortable garments for adolescents” in Google Alerts. The results shoot back Pinterest boards, along with articles on “parenting and childcare blogs” relevant to your local business. You decide to check out the Pinterest board, and to your delight, you come across many other boards in the same niche. There you go, that’s the ticket! So Pinterest, in this case, is one social channel you definitely need to be eyeballing. Search Function on Social Channels You can certainly delve deeper into analyzing customer behavior and preferences on a particular social media platform. Even if you love one social media platform more over the other, you can find out if your customers are there too. Use the platform’s search functionality to easily determine your customers’ visibility. In some cases, this can be as simple as entering the name of your customers in the search box. Things like relevant industry leaders, niche brands and topics can also be easily searched. If your user base is significantly large, you should make a short list selection of the ones you want to reach and then look them up on a specific social media platform. Always stay up to date with the changes that take place from time to time on social platforms. Researching this way helps you devise a social media marketing strategy so you’ll know where to invest. Coupons and Promotions A great way to connect with your customers online is offering web-specific coupons and specials. Offer promotional codes for your online store (if there is one) and Facebook page. Offer Twitter-only deals and specials. Have a point-of-sale display saying: “Join us on Twitter to get online-only deals and coupons!” Surveys and Polls You never know what kind of response you’re going to get from creating polls and surveys. You could put a request on receipts asking customers to take your survey/poll, while providing them with a brief URL. Survey Monkey can be used to get this done and remember to include your website and social media channels. Create Your Online Community The essence behind an online brand community is to build shared loyalty towards a particular product or service. Build a community for your brand by utilizing a social space where you can engage users. Discuss all your latest products, announce launches and special promotions, talk about future company plans, or simply ask people about their experiences with your product. The key however, to creating a great brand-focused online community is to practice honesty at all times and have a true desire to genuinely interact with your audience with a ready ear – seek opinions, take up their recommendations and treat all feedback as “feedback”, whether good or bad. Manage Relations Online Apart from phone calls and emails, you can rely on your audience’s favorite social media platform to act as venues for addressing customer feedback. Even those customers not too fond of going online to interact with a business end up voicing their opinions on social sites because, well, their friends and family are doing it too. Monitor your social pages with a keen eye, join the conversation and respond to users promptly. Review sites are a good way of rewarding loyal customers, and they can also help you solve issues unhappy customers are facing. Don’t be slow to embrace online efforts, and if you’re still unsure how they will affect offline sales, you can breathe easy: online users are your real customers and can have a major and highly desirable effect on offline sales. As long as you’ve laid out a comprehensible digital marketing strategy, you’re going to start seeing positive impacts almost immediately. Don’t Be Shy to Branch Out Using mainstream social platforms like G+, Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter and Facebook is fine, however, that doesn’t mean you should be ignoring other social media platforms like social review sites and social bookmarking sites. Use Foursquare to let your customers know where you are by simply checking into the site. This is what being social is all about: tap into every reliable channel you can. It’s your lifeline. Extend Benefits to Visiting Customers Don’t be surprised if people visiting your website or social media page are asking themselves “What’s in it for me?”, because they almost always do and have a right to do so. You can give something away for free to build customer trust and interest. It could be anything at all – a discount code, limited product trial or free book. You can also give them points or perks for liking your page. All of this helps to earn more loyal followers who are willing to stay engaged with you online. Optimize Those Social Media Accounts Optimizing social media accounts entails the use of relevant keywords; i.e. using keywords that go along with or complement your business. Visualize what keywords customers must be entering on Google when searching for your products and services or other similar businesses. Use your imagination, get creative, and use those keywords in all your posts. And That’s All She Wrote Utilize these social media and online tools, and you can turn the relationships into sales. Relationships are an important form of currency; they are primarily responsible for driving businesses. When you have a strong online following, your offline user base is bound to follow suit. The most valuable customers are the ones you hold onto, and in this day and age, interacting and engaging with them online is a standard business practice, no matter how big or small your scope of operation is. Do let me know your favorite strategy of converting off-line customers to online? I’m really interested to learn some other dimensions. | Build A Mobile App Today!
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Tips to know before getting into Fashion Blogging

Tips to know before getting into Fashion Blogging | Digital Marketing | Scoop.it
Fashion blogging has become a competitive space to mirror the growth in some of the most rapidly growing niches within digital marketing. The old adage
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The Best Way to Share Your Social Media Content

The Best Way to Share Your Social Media Content | Digital Marketing | Scoop.it
Talk to any small business owner and they will tell you about the different ways they like to use social media to spread the word on their p
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20 of the Best Email Marketing Tools for Small Businesses | BuildFire

20 of the Best Email Marketing Tools for Small Businesses | BuildFire | Digital Marketing | Scoop.it
Social media – the undisputed king in the marketing domain... And then there’s email. Think of it as a grandparent to social media marketing. Don’t be fooled, it’s still reliable if used the right way. Today’s marketers may not be as email savvy, nor do they consider it to be a “cool” way of contacting clients, however, it has stood the test of time and proven itself to be an effective method of communication. As long as you’re using it right, email is still one of the most valuable and targeted channels for reaching your audience. Here are some of the best email marketing tools to ensure you hit the mark every time. Litmus Litmus is a highly versatile tool through which you can use to test and track email. You can test your emails in traditional web-clients and also popular mobile devices like Android, Apple and Windows. Use Litmus for render testing and make sure your creative is optimized for any given device. You can test more than 40 clients and devices and with a mere click, Litmus can generate a test email to an address so you can send it to your ESP. Within minutes you’re going to see desired browsers, ISPs and devices. Want your link testing stream-lined? Put the email through a landing page test and within minutes, you’re going to get an overlay of that email with complete results for every link. The ESP tracking report inserts a tracking pixel in your email and you get subscriber data such as how and where the email was opened, how much time the user spent time reading it, and if it was organically forwarded or printed. Pricing: Litmus comes with a free 7-day trial, while the premium version can be had for $399 a month, $149 for the Plus version, and $79 for the basic version. Mail Chimp   Don’t let Mail Chimp’s links to funny YouTube clips or humorous messages throw you off. It’s all business when it comes to collecting statistics, sending emails and improving performance. The dashboard lays it all out clearly: import lists, create and send campaigns, and proceed to build your audience. As the import happens in the background, you can work on building your campaign. You have the option to choose if everyone in your list gets the email or a specific segment only – the process is very customizable. Creating a segment is simple, use filters to build contacts subsets, use previously created segments or cut/paste from a recipient email address list. The tracking options let you know who has opened the email messages and which campaign links receives the most clicks. The enhanced tracking option links to your website through Salesforce or Google Analytics. To use “auto-responders”, you must have a paid account – you can automatically trigger specific responses or segment users based on actions they take. After sending out your emails, MailChimp allows you to integrate your social channels to post regular updates on Twitter and Facebook. Pricing: MailChimp offers free subscription for 2000 subscribers or 12,000 emails per month. For unlimited account, the pricing starts from $10. Reach Mail Use Reach Mail’s Message Testing feature to see a direct performance metrics comparison of as many as five individual email campaigns. This feature also takes into account different subject lines or content within each email, so you can optimize the subject line wording or determine how any given email performs in contrast to others. Through this feature, you can also decide on the percentage of your subscriber list that should be used to test the message. Once the ‘test campaign’ has finished, the system will generate a snapshot report highlighting open and click rates for each version. All you need to do is select the best-performing one and schedule the rest of your emails. Reach Mail also gives you the option to choose from several hundred email templates or let one of their designers custom-design it for you. Advanced tracking lets you see who clicked on your links, how many users forwarded your message or who opted out. From there on, you can send a follow-up email campaign to the users how clicked on specific links. Pricing: Reach Mail starts from $10 per month to $70/month. Target Hero Target Hero has a prominent WYSIWYG (what you see is what you get) editor, image hosting, HTML as well as plain text emails, and a host of features you’d want to have in email marketing software. This tool is ideal for businesses that require a wide spectrum of features to run their campaigns, but often lack the large subscriber lists. Target Hero requires account verification, to do this, you’ll have to sign up, then follow the SMS authentication process. Pricing: Their free plan gives you 1,000 contacts with unlimited emails. For up to 3,000 contacts, you need to get the $9.90/month Mini Hero plan. The Hero plan gives you as many as 5,000 contacts at $19.90. And, the Super Hero plan can be had for $39.90 for up to 10,000 contacts. Mad Mimi Create professional-grade emails with Mad Mimi’s straightforward WYSIWG editor. Choose from 39 social networking buttons like share, like, pin and retweet and easily customize your emails to add links. Aside from creating fresh email marketing campaigns, you can copy campaigns using the clone tool – adjust the original document without making changes to prior versions of your work. For the accident-prone among us, there’s no need to worry about deleting your email campaigns as you can always undo the deletion. Phew! The detailed reporting features allow you to see how many emails were opened, number of embedded links, how many shares there were on social media and a lot more. You can also find out about the links any particular user clicks on. Mad Mimi integrates with Google Analytics to provide in-depth statistics and click tracking. Get “forward to friend” reports and export them to Excel if you wish. View real-time responses on your social networking activity with regard to email campaigns. Pricing: Mad Mimi pricing starts from $10 per month basic account for 500 contacts and the pro package costs $42 for 10,000 contacts. Cake Mail   CakeMail’s tools have your email campaign covered. One great feature is split A/B testing for example, to help determine the most ideal mailing list or Spam Assassin to make sure your emails don’t end up in spam. There’s Google Integration as well to let you view detailed stats on how each campaign is faring. Sending out emails is a seamless process. Just give your campaign a title, set your recipients, design your email and choose the time to send. Pick from twenty default templates with fully customizable options or upload your own. HTML-savvy users are going to be pleased with the advanced editing option. The editor also lets you add, delete, and rearrange sections of your email like text boxes, images, QR codes, social media elements, and Google Maps. The Campaign Analysis Tools use Google Analytics to give detailed reports on open, click, bounce and unsubscribe rates for your contacts. Use this information to group contacts into lists depending on email patterns and user interests. Pricing: The free Starter plan allows 500 contacts along with 500 emails. The basic package starts from $8 per month. Mailjet Use Mailjet to conveniently combine template-based marketing and transactional email sending in one online app. Add to that a consultation service to boot, and you’re all set. The SMTP server and RESTful API integrate smoothly with the rest of your apps. Libraries let you add Mailjet support to your app in several languages, including Python, Ruby and PHP, and integrations with Magento, WordPress and much more. You never have to worry about getting stuck either, as there’s a 24-hour support line. Take advantage of the email template designer or upload your own. There are also tools to segments lists and personalize emails with all your contact data. The A/X testing feature allows you to test up to ten different versions of your email before you decide which one stands out as the best. A campaign comparison tool pits your previous campaigns against the current one to give a complete picture. Manage email lists, stats and templates all inside Mailjet’s interface, but eventually, you get to decide how you want them sent. For example, you can use the app’s UUI to create a campaign or you could use the API integration and use a few lines of code to launch a formatted email campaign to your contacts. Pricing: The free plan bags you 100,000 contacts and you get to send 6,000 emails a month. The bronze package costs you around $7.49/month. Flashissue Flashissue is one of the best tools for emailing newsletters. A simple interface combines email marketing with content curation. Sign in through Google or Facebook and have newsletters emailed to your contacts in just five minutes.     No matter what the focus of your newsletter is, you can pull down content from blog posts or search the web to pull content from a variety of sources – Flashissue automatically summarizes this content for you. After populating the editor with a certain number of story summaries, you can change the headline and article descriptions in order to better personalize it for your readers. This allows a more tailored emailer, rather than just generic news. After this, you need to upload a banner and decide on the best way of delivering it. Even the free version boasts plenty of functionality – you can send your newsletter either through Flashissue itself or Gmail, Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Google+ and a variety of other platforms as well. Get a premium account which ranges between $20 and $50, and Flashissue integrates with Constant Contact and MailChimp to unlock a host of extra features. Pricing: The free Solo plan gives you 25 contacts a month with unlimited emails and group plan starts from $5 per month with 250 contacts. Constant Contact Scroll through several hundred design templates or custom design your own. Insert a wide assortment of extra features if you wish – documents, images, polls, links to surveys, videos etc. Images and text can also be imported directly into the WYSIWYG editor. Create comprehensive reports on your email campaigns to show number of opt-outs, complaints, bounces, forwards and click-throughs. The social-share toolbar and social media buttons – Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook – will work wonders to boost traffic to your web page. Pricing: They offer two plans; the email plan starts at $20 per month and the email plus plan starts at $45 per month. AWeber AWeber’s autoresponder tool is a great way to engage your customers. You get access to over 150 email templates to make the email design process hiccup-free.   Improve various business functions by integrating your email marketing account with other online services. If you happen to be using a service like Salesforce, you can customize your account to automatically display which customers are subscribed to AWeber emails, and the emails they’ve gotten from you. Your AWeber account can also integrate with the most well-known shopping cart tools, letting you add new customers each time they make a purchase on your website. If you want to take your marketing efforts to the next level, you can visit AWeber Labs to build your own apps and time-saving tools through the AWeber API. With this kind of flexibility at your fingertips, you can really take advantage of customer data in order to better optimize marketing strategies. Pricing: AWeber’s monthly plan goes for $19 and provides 500 subscribers, unlimited emails and a 30-day money back guarantee. iContact iContact’s package is simple yet intuititve – it comes complete with HTML coding options and marketing templates, depending on how deep you want to get into your campaign. An easy-to-navigate interface greets you and the tabs at the top half of the screen let you create email campaigns and see how they’re performing. After choosing a tab, leave it up to the setup wizard to guide you through the rest of the process. Once you have a list of contacts, iContact helps you add a sign-up form to your website so you can convert visitors to solidified subscribers. Got a list of subscribers saved in a CSV or Excel file? Import them into your iContact subscriber list. Create aliases and send out emails according to specific filters to define your target market. iContact also embraces social media and integrates Twitter as well as Facebook-friendly features. The autoresponder feature sends automatic messages at preset intervals which are triggered by certain events. For instance, if a newsletter is signed up for, the autoresponder sends that person a short welcome message. Or, when a customer’s birthday is coming up, you could send them email coupons. Pricing: iContact has special packages for Small businesses starts from $14 to $117 monthly. GetResponse Effectively maintain your contacts list and create professional-grade marketing campaigns. The contacts section lets you add custom fields to contact lists and allows you to copy contacts as well as conduct searches. GetResponse will track how many subscribers view your emails, complain, unsubscribe or click on links. You will also know how many emails failed to arrive at their destination due to any given reason. You can also find out why people unsubscribed. Clearly labeled data is displayed in pie charts and bar graphs. You can view a summary of results after sending out surveys. Help and support comes in the form of FAQS, webinars, PDFs, video tutorials, a glossary and learning center articles. There’s email and chat support. Pricing: They offer various packages depends on the number of subscribers, the basic starts from $15 per month with 1,000 subscribers. Zoho Zoho’s campaign process is divided into three sections: Basic Details where you select the campaign’s name and email details, Content and, The Audience. The last two are self-explanatory. Your campaign can be completed once you select your recipients and other campaign-specific details. In the Content section, you’ll find an incredibly useful WYSIWYG editor used for HTML content. Add images, drag and drop items, format text and copy/paste any text you want in your email. Want this layout and format to be used by default for every campaign? Save to Library and you’re covered. Take advantage of user-defined tags by creating user-defined fields. Once you create a new field, you can create more powerful custom tags. The kind of custom fields and tags you create is governed by the type of products and servicing you’re offering. Pricing: The free test plan unlocks 500 subscribers/2,500 emails a month. Pricing starts with $49/month. ToutApp When it comes to functionality and features, ToutApp has found its place as the Swiss Army Knife of email marketing tools.   The need for your sales team to be equipped with templates is always there - in this department, ToutApp excels. You also need visibility into what emails got delivered, which ones were opened or forwarded, in addition to links clicked, attachments opened and attached PDF pages that were opened. Mobile access allows all features to be easily accessed from your smartphone. Use scheduling to determine which batch of emails go out when. ToutApp includes CRM integration and analytics. This gives you full transparency to know exactly how your emails are doing at any given stage of the process. The desktop alert and notification lets you know who opened and forwarded emails, and to top it all off, there’s an email chat feature that lets you contact support right through the email you send them. Simply cool. Pricing: They offers a free 14 day trial account and the basic package starts at $30/month. LeadPages You can create superb landing pages with ease using LeadPages, and the best part is you don’t need to get into your tech-nerd shoes just to make the most of it.   Create a variety of landing pages for your site – pages that ar necessary for having a prominent online presence without having to use an advanced code. The editing template offers plenty of flexibility to customize landing pages whenever needed – 50 templates to be exact. Loading time on the site is a breeze, courtesy of easily readable code. There’s seamless integration with the best email marketing providers. You’re only a few clicks away from integrating your landing page with the desired marketing platform. Pricing: They have multiple monthly and annual plans; the basic package starts from $25/month. BenchMark   This tool provides multiple templates for almost every purpose, including; newsletter, greetings, promotion templates, giveaways, etc. With the intuitive visual editor tool, you can add your own HTML and CSS to give more personalized look. With the built in spam filter, you can cross check your template and make sure it doesn’t contain any objectionable material. They have a brilliant community system that encourages your own personalized designs and vote your idea. If your design receives most votes, their development team look into it and add it in the next update. It just shows how seriously they value the feedback of their customers. Pricing: The basic package starts with 600 emails at $9.95/month to 2500 emails in $19.95 per month. Infusionsoft Infusionsoft can be expensive to acquire, but you’re going to be amazed by the ROI. The average ROI of email marketing in the US is 44%. Case studies indicate people have reported more than 300% increase in profit and growing revenue nearly eight times while using Infusionsoft. Simply go through the purchase and setup process, followed by the Kickstarter session and finally, setting up your automated marketing campaigns. The flowchart-style campaign will win you over in a heartbeat. Building email campaigns is pure fun and it is indeed a satisfying feeling to know that at any time, all your customers are being given attention and interacted with in a highly personalized way, while you focus on other priorities. The CRM’s lead scoring feature is a real standout, though nothing extraordinary, but still generally better and more adept than most CRM platforms. Pricing: The basis package starts from $199/month with 2,500 contacts and up to 12,500 emails. Campaign Monitor The Template Builder tool ensures that all emails can be easily read on a mobile device in order to curb the possibility of missed opportunities due to emails displaying improperly. Campaign Monitor generates actual screens of your email design in popular email clients like Gmail, Hotmail, Yahoo and many more. This allows you to get your campaigns displaying properly in all email clients. Import your own HTML templates by using Campaign Monitor’s tags to make sure you’re able to use its integrated template editor to edit and personalize content in future. A variety of formats can be uploaded including Excel, tab delimited and CSV, you can also copy/paste content directly. Setting autoresponders is fairly easy and you can use data segmentation to make sure only the intended users receive them. One of Campaign Monitor’s key strengths is the interface. It’s absolutely clutter-free and straight-forward. Pricing: They have two packages; basic one starts from $9 per month and the unlimited costs $29/month. Vertical Response Vertical Response lets you easily connect your email marketing campaigns to Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook. Go past just your current contacts list and reach out to a much wider audience.   There are a few ways of building your email advertising drive. If you’re not too well-versed at using HTML, you can use the email wizard. If you’re more interested in building emails which feature your company’s websites and graphics, you can use the freeform HTML editor. Not concerned about images or logos? Go with the text-only option, simple. Pricing: You can send up to 4,000 emails per month to 1,000 contacts totally free. Campaigner Integrate all your social media accounts with Campaigner’s marketing system. Use the iPhone mobile app to track your campaigns on the go.   You’ll appreciate the email creation tool – more than 500 templates to choose from and they’re organized according to industry categories and type of business. The email marketing tools also provide among the best list and contact management tools you can find today. Import all your lists and contact from email accounts. Sort and filter them as per your emailing needs. Bounced and unsubscribed email addresses are automatically removed from your lists. Take advantage of the reporting tools after starting your campaign. Receive all stats and reports through email if you wish or download them to a spreadsheet. Pricing: You can test out your email marketing right away with the 30-day free trial. The basic package costs $20 per month. Did We Miss Anything? Is there any tool I missed out? I’m sure, I did.. Tell us in the comments section and do let us know what do you think about the above ones. | Build A Mobile App Today!
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5 Advanced SEO Strategies Your Probably Aren’t Using

5 Advanced SEO Strategies Your Probably Aren’t Using | Digital Marketing | Scoop.it
These simple but overlooked tactics can help boost your site's traffic and revenue.
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Proven Tips To Get More Twitter Followers That Work In 2015 - Temi.co.uk

Proven Tips To Get More Twitter Followers That Work In 2015 - Temi.co.uk | Digital Marketing | Scoop.it
Twitter is one of the most powerful social network and most people who work in SEO/Webmaster/SMM niche know how to use this platform properly. By this I mean not get as many followers as possible, but get as many those followers who will engage with you. This expert roundup will show you the most proven …
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Engagement Optimization: Reaching Customers on Social Media | BuildFire

Engagement Optimization: Reaching Customers on Social Media | BuildFire | Digital Marketing | Scoop.it
As a start-up or SME, it’s important to not only identify your target audience and an ideal channel to reach out to them but also the best timings to manage your campaigns. There are some basic principles that need to be considered when choosing the best strategy to do this and there are some great tools that can help you do this. Let’s start… Identify Your Target Market Before anything else, you need to identify your target audience. While demographics is crucial, certain key insights will tell you what kind of individuals they are – what they like or dislike, what makes them tick etc. This should give you a clear direction so that you can tailor content to engage them completely. Most small businesses don’t have a properly devised social media strategy which gives them a clear path to take when it comes to zeroing in on their target audience. Well, there’s good news: it’s not quite as hard as you may have been led to believe. Focus on the Basics First: Demographics An ideal place to take your first step: define the more identifiable characteristics of your customer base. You really need to be aware of the key characteristics of your target audience, otherwise you’re marketing campaign will serve little purpose. Just to give you an example, a performance car parts business will target car aficionados, speed junkies or even motorsport teams. It’s a good start, however, it won’t tell your social media team much about handcrafting content your audience will love and appreciate. In order to fine-tune your demographics identification, ask yourself some questions, while keeping in mind the customers which have given you the most business: Does my product cross any ethnical boundaries? Does it cater to any particular ethnicity only? Is my product geared more towards men, women or both? In either case carefully consider some aspects about your typical user – what age bracket they fall in, whether they’re married or not and how frequently they make purchasing decisions? Is my product too expensive? Will all of my customers be able to get it or will it only satisfy consumers of a specific income class? What’s the physical location of my target audience? Are they local? What kind of topics do people in this locality discuss on social media? At the end, you should have the following essential demographics clearly outlined: Gender Age Income level Location Marital status Occupation Education Background Ethnicity What Makes Your Audience Tick: Psychographics You’re now armed with some basic information to go with regarding your target audience. Now you must delve deeper into who they are as individuals. This is a very important step in determining what kind of content you’re going to craft on social media. To further hone the process of ‘psychographically’ identifying your customers, stay up to date with your everyday-employees, the ones who interact directly with customers on a regular basis. Ask them customer-related questions like: What do they value the most? What are their likes/dislikes and what that tells you about them? What kind of lifestyle do they have and how will my product or service integrate with their lifestyles? Now look at your product/service from a critical perspective. Questions like these can help you better understand your target base: What features do your current customers find the most appealing? When do they particularly enjoy using your product/service? And, do they prefer using it a certain way? Understand Who Your “Aspirational” Customers Are It may be too early to think about expanding your business, but if you are somewhat of a novice rather than a true beginner, you should start focusing on aspirational customers; these are essentially customers who may not be interested in your product/service today, but you might want to gear your business more towards them in future with the power of social media. Why? Let’s understand this in greater deal. The example I gave earlier of a performance car parts business – our target audiences primarily were speed junkies and performance car nuts. Motorsport schools team and bloggers can be seen as aspirational customers since they would offer us ‘commercial’ business, which is undeniably more profitable than business focused only and primarily on your target base. Additional Tips for “DIY” Target Audience Identification In case the above steps seem too cumbersome, you can always study one of your well-performing competitors. I’d suggest Twitonomy for this task as it will provide you with the detailed insights about their strategy, type of content they publish, who are the top followers are and what audience they’re targeting. Why not write all this down? You might gain valuable insights. Outline your psychographics and you may inadvertently stumble upon a number of target customers. It really helps if you give them names and unique personas. This way, you’re in a better position to create more compelling content. Pick the Most Ideal Social Networks to Reach Out Twitter When people interact with a small business on Twitter, they are much more likely to make future purchases from them. One of the keys to dominating social media is to have presence on the same social network channels as your customers. Twitter has well over 200 million active users so there’s a mighty good chance you’ll find your customer base on Twitter. Twitter can greatly help you build meaningful relationships with your target customers and even connect you with other communities or businesses you might be interested in collaborating with. Even if your startup has a relatively small team, you can use the “Twitter lists” and “advanced Twitter search” feature to build, improve and better manage customer relationships. Check out this post about Twitter growth hacks that can revolutionize your campaigns. When to Tweet? Since Twitter is so wildly popular among mobile users, it might be tough to get a fix on the best time to post. However, a little digging revealed (no surprise) that brand engagement is 17% higher over the weekend. Tweets posted on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays have the highest CTRs (click through rate) as opposed to middle-of-the-week posts. Use Buffer to your advantage to spread out the tweets so they get posted at the most opportune of times. As for the time of day, retweets are their highest early evening, around 5 pm, as most people are getting ready to sign off from work. For click-throughs, sometime around noon and mid-evening seem to work well; people are on lunch breaks, looking for something to keep themselves occupied or on the way back from work. In addition, Twitter Analytics does a good job of giving you a live break-down of crucial user engagement metrics. These tools can help you too: Twitter Analytics Tweriod FollowerWonk Buffer Social Bro HootSuite LinkedIn LinkedIn is one of those social networks, where ALL businesses, be it small or big, ought to have a presence. LinkedIn lets you establish credibility and authenticity of your brand through a business page – where all information pertaining to the who, what and where of your business is found. As a small business, this is a channel you really need to be on because you’ll run into potential customers and investors, as well as industry professionals by the numbers. Having a proper LinkedIn page is a great free marketing tool and if you know how to use it the right way, the benefits are reaped almost immediately. When to Post? Since you want to reach the largest number of users, you need to publish your content when they are most active. The best recommended times are from Monday to Friday, 7-9am and 5-6pm. Working hours have the most reach, so there’s no need to be too specific about times; test out what works best for your content and tailor it accordingly. Use Buffer to automatically choose the best time for your posts to go live, depending on the rhythms and preferences of your audience. Hootsuite also proves to be a worthy contender in this regard. I would also recommend that you post at least twenty times each month, which can help you reach at least 60% of your audience Check this post to learn how you can improve LinkedIn marketing strategy. Facebook Facebook is not only a great social media channel for effectively resolving customer queries and issues, but also serves as a great source for reaching out to new audiences. One of the greatest benefits of having a Facebook business page is the ability to communicate directly with prospects either through your wall or private messages. It is also an excellent opportunity to get to know customers up close and what it is they’re asking for. When to Post? What’s the best time to post updates in order to get the most user engagement? After some research, I’ve determined that engagement rates are generally higher on Thursdays and Fridays, perhaps because the weekend is close at hand; the closer the weekend is, the more people want to be away from work and the more time they want to spend on Facebook. So feel free to post more status updates close to the weekend, especially on Fridays. You may want to experiment with other days as well, depending on your particular user base, though I’m going to reiterate: the closer it is to the weekend, the better. As far as the best time of day goes, many will tell you this is largely up for debate, though there appears to be some common ground: around 1 pm to get the most shares, mid-afternoon for the most clicks, and if you want to look at it from a broader perspective, then between 9 am and 7 pm. So, in essence, early afternoon is probably the best time for posting updates and around dinner time or right before work, not being the best. I’d suggest closely monitoring Facebook Page Insights to give you valuable stats and info on how your social engagement is faring. How to Better Engage Audiences Before and After Product Launch Videos Before and after any product launch, you should harness the power of social media to let the world know what you’re about to unveil. Online consumers love watching videos. And why shouldn’t they? After all, there is something really engaging about seeing content rather than looking at it on banners or reading about it in a magazine. Create a product video to establish a personal connection between your product and intended audience. The type of product you have dictates the kind of video you’ll make. For example, women’s shoes might showcase a well-known model taking a stroll on the side-walk. If you’re about to release a mobile app which keeps track of your fitness level, you might advertise an uber-fight man running or lifting weights while keeping track of his exercise regimen or calories burned. You could also make a personal video where you’re speaking to your social media following about the upcoming product. Checkout this video from DollarShaveClub.com: Contests Social media contests are a highly effective means of engaging your audience, in addition to building loyalty and brand awareness. Before your launch, get your audience involved in the launch process even if they are unaware of what’s in store for them. A contest is a good way of enticing your audience just enough to spark interest without giving away too much. Twitter and Facebook are quite receptive to contests, so that’s a good place to start. Brand Advocates Pre-launch is the optimal time to get as many audience members involved as possible. Your brand advocates need access to a channel through which they can access exclusive information about the soon-to-be-launched product which is when Twitter lists, Google+ Communities and Facebook groups can be utilized. Sync it All With a Hashtag Use a hashtag to round up all your brand-related activities. It’s uniqueness means that audiences can easily identify you and share all your content across a variety of social media channels. A hashtag facilitates conversations revolving around your product right before launch. Talking about an upcoming product and creating hype is a highly crucial aspect of social media marketing done right. What to do Post-launch Once your product is launched, there’s a crucial window of opportunity you just don’t want to miss. Focus on Numbers You must be very diligent when it comes to collecting numbers to know how the audience is responding to your marketing efforts. Numbers such as: Number of Fans & Followers Engagement percentage on your posts and tweets. A sublist of people who opted in as brand ambassadors Which hashtag performed better? Work on Future Launch Plans Try not to sit on your success for too long: set a date for the next launch which might open up a range of new and exciting possibilities. This is a chance to improve your overall process, fix or change approaches that didn’t work well the last time, and improve overall organization and scheduling. This way, you can foresee some of the challenges that lie ahead, especially since you’ve collected plenty of data in advance. Here are some benefits of running this drill: You’re in a better position to understand what needs optimizing and when to schedule events – in the end, you’re looking at better conversions. It’s a chance to find partners. It lets you plan content strategy accordingly, knowing what audiences responded to previously. And, the opportunity to build a stronger more trustworthy relationship with your users presents itself. Bonus Tip: You can also take advantage of these really great social media management tools: Engagor SocialCentiv Sociota Livecube Offerpop Notify Bottle Nose Crimson Hexagon Cyber Alert Social Cast I hope these practices will prove to be beneficial for your business. Let me know your thoughts about it and if there is any tool or tip that I missed out, do share in the comment section. | Build A Mobile App Today!
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Our Top 7 App Picks, Mid-March Issue

Our Top 7 App Picks, Mid-March Issue | Digital Marketing | Scoop.it
Social Cubix handpicks top seven mobile apps for the month of March. Life on the go really is good!
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Referral Marketing: 10 Killer Plugins to Boost Sales

Referral Marketing: 10 Killer Plugins to Boost Sales | Digital Marketing | Scoop.it
Drive more traffic to your business by using these ten best referral plugins to “NOS” your sales and customer base.
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How CDNs Can Have a Positive Impact on SEO

How CDNs Can Have a Positive Impact on SEO | Digital Marketing | Scoop.it
These days, everyone is looking to find out the ultimate “Secret” of ruling the rankings. For this reason, people are attempting every approach to be on the “#1” spot and are adopting every method that may influence their SEO campaigns in any positive way. It can be associated to aspects related to HTTP’s, going mobile, page load speed or yielding natural niche targeted links etc.    Moz recently published the 2015 ranking survey report in which 150 top marketing experts weighed in and voted for the factors that impact on rankings; page load time or page speed is one of the factors that they all stressed on and even Google itself accepted that, page speed does matter. When we speak about page speed optimization, CDN’s play a vital role. Let’s analyze how CDN improves page speed that directly impacts your SEO. What is CDN? Page loading speed is assuming greater importance for web users, and therefore for website owners. Identical copies of websites distributed across various servers located globally, and functioning as a unified Content Delivery Network (CDN) considerably boosts page loading speeds by matching user location with the geographically nearest server for the website. How CDN & SEO work together? As stated above, CDN enhances both the speed and efficiency of data provision to the end user. What it also does, is help the website rank higher in search engines. Although CDN’s aren’t a “silver bullet” solution for this purpose by any means and website owner skills will come into play with regards to search engine rankings, CDN does take care of several of the technical aspects of search engine criteria. Hosting Impacts The geographical redundancy as compared to a single server location is a major benefit for the SEO of the website. The quicker load time of the website owing to users being routed to the most proximate server of several located globally will also help enhance the site’s health. CDN Fights with Duplicate Content Creation Issues Ensuring identical versions of the website across multiple servers located across the globe may appear to be a challenge, and it is. However, advanced caching algorithms and use of canonical headers is a good solution for such a concern, if and when it may arise. These techniques also further enhance the SEO of the website. Further Read: How CDNs can help you in understanding White Fall diagrams Improved Security with the use of CDN Well, this one is rather obvious: geographical dispersion of servers leads to better site security, both in cases of malicious digital/physical attacks, or power or other disruptions at a particular site. In such an eventuality, network latency ensures that the remaining servers on the CDN assume the load of the compromised server location. This arrangement ensures a very high uptime for the website (5 9’s not being unusual). Our own personal use of a CDN for our website has led us to two important conclusions: (a) Improved usability: the bounce-rate on our site has declined considerably, accompanied …
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Insights into the UAE Real Estate Industry: 11 Must-Have Mobile Apps for Real Estate Agents in Dubai

Insights into the UAE Real Estate Industry: 11 Must-Have Mobile Apps for Real Estate Agents in Dubai | Digital Marketing | Scoop.it
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Tips for SMEs to Increase Blog Visibility on Google | BuildFire

Tips for SMEs to Increase Blog Visibility on Google | BuildFire | Digital Marketing | Scoop.it
So after hours of reading on the internet and thinking about the effectiveness of blogging you excitedly start a new business blog and want it to reach out to your audiences in a heartbeat. But the question is: how do you know for sure if Google is going to show it in the top ten? More importantly, how do you make certain it shows up on Google to begin with? Well, here’s a little trick: your blog is not just a blog, it’s a business. Take it seriously and put it high on your list of priorities and incorporate these “quick tips” to gain traction. Note: We’re not going to touch on the technical side but let’s explore some etiquettes and rules of business blogging that can beat all the scary Google updates and will make you stand out. 1. Choose the Right Topic What you write about should be something you’re really passionate about and can educate others as well as build your brand awareness. Blogging about something you have little to no interest in will only leave your readers in a “ho-hum” state and chances are they won’t be returning to read more and this will directly make an eternal impact on your brand’s image. You could start writing about: Your story and how your company formed Reflect your vision and mission statements Personal insight into your business by posting videos and images Thought leadership articles on industry topics Showcase industry event participations Your workflow process Your employees and their achievements Conduct market researches Give your feedback on the latest market research and reports Produce how-to’s, tips, hacks and tricks content Feature interviews with industry insiders Resource lists Your quarterly and yearly performance of your business for transparency and building trust Job openings Your customers and their experiences in videos, podcasts or as a text post Allow industry experts and bloggers to guest post Through regular blogging you can build brand credibility by sharing your expert knowledge and what you’ve learnt along your business journey. In any case, don’t be hesitant when it comes to competing with a popular blog, nobody’s saying you have to be the best or end up on Google’s first page rankings. It’s an amazing feeling to see yourself among the top three on Google, however, it isn’t mandatory in order to find success with your blog. Consistency overrules every time and as long as you stick to it, you should be able to outlast the competition and start raking in hundreds, maybe even thousands of readers to your blog. 2. People Do Not Want to Read Anything Less than “Great” This may take some experimentation initially, depending on your audience, but again, you should let your passion be your writing compass. Buzzfeed style articles, or listicles have proven very popular format recently. Top lists, how to’s and advice posts invite the reader in to read what this great knowledge is that you’d like to share. Use your imagination and put yourself in your readers’ shoes; what do they like reading the most? Will they find this helpful? It’s important to be genuine and let your brand’s personality shine throughout the blog. The reason many people love going back to blogs is because they get a glimpse of the brand from a personal standpoint. Establish that connection and do a little research into what’s popular in your chosen topic and what kind of concerns or questions people have; forums and social media are great places to conduct this. 3. Engage Regularly Writing content on a regular basis does not only show your readers but also Google that you’re serious. It doesn’t make much sense to publish 4 to 6 articles one week and nothing at all the next 2 weeks. Instead, write whenever you’re inspired and you think it’s gonna project your brand or will be helpful for the readers. Prepare write-ups in advance and schedule them to be published on designated dates. Regular intervals are always better, even if you’re publishing 1 to 2 articles each week; at least you’re publishing every single week, and Google loves that. It’s always better to have a content calendar that is shared internally with your team so everyone knows what will be published each week and all marketing activities can be aligned accordingly. Remember, a trick to rule on SERPs and going viral depends heavily on timings; in fact, timing is everything. So keep a close eye on the latest industry news and trends and also encourage people in your team to reactively write about it so you can hit the publish button right away. 4. Utilize Email Marketing Email marketing will never be old school. Blogging and email marketing serve entirely different purposes but if you’re looking to touch new heights of success from your blog then it’s a good idea to combine the two. Blogging is also an essential channel to help build a targeted email list. If you’re regularly producing interesting content, a good percentage of your email list will ultimately convert to be your potential customers. Bonus Tip: Get Response is the best tool for this. It allows you to create newsletters, build lists, responsive email designs, auto responders and tons of other features to sky rocket your content marketing campaigns. 5. Attract a following on social media You can’t expect your following to grow by just writing compelling stuff on your blog on a regular basis. It needs to get out there to be seen, sharing posts on Twitter, Facebook, Google Plus and LinkedIn will spread the word and increase your social following as well as engagement. There is a strong speculation that Google favors the content that shares well on social media and it’s been proved that sharing links on social media also improves the crawling and indexing rates. Remember, if your content is powerful, unique and interesting, people will share it which will get your blog the appreciation it deserves plus a sacred spot in SERPs. Posting content according to hashtags also increases your post reach tremendously. For example, if you run a real estate business, it’s a good idea to include popular hashtags within your posts. Such as #Listing, #Property, #Homes and #RealEstateInvesting Bonus Tip: To search for the best hashtags relating to your industry, try Hashtagify.me. It gives insightful data that contains popularity, correlation, weekly and monthly trends for each hashtag. 6. Build a Rapport with Other Bloggers Do a search on other active and popular bloggers within your industry. Start by commenting on their blogs, leaving helpful insights and linking their most helpful posts in your blogs. In most cases, they will gladly do the same for you, particularly if you are providing their blogs value time and time again. Bonus Tip: Follower Wonk is the ultimate tool for finding niche bloggers and influencers. 7. SEO Will Always Matter Last but no means the least, SEO matters a lot! Your blog will never be able to succeed if you’re not following latest SEO standards. These are the things that can help you out: Choose an SEO friendly CMS (Content Management System) to handle all the things under single tab Checkout your Google webmaster tools account daily for any errors or issues URL structure should be short, simple and user-friendly Blog title and H tags should be catchy and contain your targeted keywords Never publish duplicate content External links should point to the right sources Get links from your industry sphere A word on back links: paying for links is never a good idea, neither is getting involved in link exchanges. These tactics might work to give you short-term results, however, Google has teams working to prevent this kind of artificial growth. In the long run, the best thing to do is create a solid resource for your target audience, because the end-goal is to stay listed on Google.   | Build A Mobile App Today!
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5 Top-tier Tips for Boosting Brand Loyalty and Customer Lifetime Value

5 Top-tier Tips for Boosting Brand Loyalty and Customer Lifetime Value | Digital Marketing | Scoop.it
We’re in an age of power-startups and growth hacking. A by-product of this is that many business owners tend to focus explicitly on new us
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Social Video Chart: Your At-A-Glance Guide To 7 Major Platforms

Social Video Chart: Your At-A-Glance Guide To 7 Major Platforms | Digital Marketing | Scoop.it
A side-by-side feature comparison of the seven major social video players -- YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Vine, Snapchat and Tumblr.
The post Social Video Chart: Your At-A-Glance Guide To 7 Major Platforms appeared first on Marketing Land.

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Why You Need Mobile Marketing to Get Your Sports Team in the Spotlight

Why You Need Mobile Marketing to Get Your Sports Team in the Spotlight | Digital Marketing | Scoop.it
One of the biggest factors that contribute to the success of your sports team is how much of the spotlight they get. Stay on top of things with mobile marketing.
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What You Should Know About Mobile App Development Cost?

What You Should Know About Mobile App Development Cost? | Digital Marketing | Scoop.it

Everything you need to know about Mobile app development cost along with iPhone and Android app developers cost.

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10 Expert Tips on Making Your Business Blog a Success

10 Expert Tips on Making Your Business Blog a Success | Digital Marketing | Scoop.it
If your business doesn’t already have its own blog, it’s about time you started one.Blogging on a regular basis can massively boost your chances of acquiring new leads, increase social following, improve your visibility on the map, and comes out...
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3 Ways to Dominate the Local SEO Game - Tech Cocktail

3 Ways to Dominate the Local SEO Game - Tech Cocktail | Digital Marketing | Scoop.it
A list of three, easy-to-implement strategies to help you dominate the local SEO game and get more customers for your (online) business.
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Social Media Marketing Tactics Every SMB Should Capitalize On

Social Media Marketing Tactics Every SMB Should Capitalize On | Digital Marketing | Scoop.it
Many small to medium enterprises (SMEs) today prefer social media marketing over more traditional forms, and they absolutely should.
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Engagement Optimization: Reaching Customers on Social Media | BuildFire

Engagement Optimization: Reaching Customers on Social Media | BuildFire | Digital Marketing | Scoop.it
As a start-up or SME, it’s important to not only identify your target audience and an ideal channel to reach out to them but also the best timings to manage your campaigns. There are some basic principles that need to be considered when choosing the best strategy to do this and there are some great tools that can help you do this. Let’s start… Identify Your Target Market Before anything else, you need to identify your target audience. While demographics is crucial, certain key insights will tell you what kind of individuals they are – what they like or dislike, what makes them tick etc. This should give you a clear direction so that you can tailor content to engage them completely. Most small businesses don’t have a properly devised social media strategy which gives them a clear path to take when it comes to zeroing in on their target audience. Well, there’s good news: it’s not quite as hard as you may have been led to believe. Focus on the Basics First: Demographics An ideal place to take your first step: define the more identifiable characteristics of your customer base. You really need to be aware of the key characteristics of your target audience, otherwise you’re marketing campaign will serve little purpose. Just to give you an example, a performance car parts business will target car aficionados, speed junkies or even motorsport teams. It’s a good start, however, it won’t tell your social media team much about handcrafting content your audience will love and appreciate. In order to fine-tune your demographics identification, ask yourself some questions, while keeping in mind the customers which have given you the most business: Does my product cross any ethnical boundaries? Does it cater to any particular ethnicity only? Is my product geared more towards men, women or both? In either case carefully consider some aspects about your typical user – what age bracket they fall in, whether they’re married or not and how frequently they make purchasing decisions? Is my product too expensive? Will all of my customers be able to get it or will it only satisfy consumers of a specific income class? What’s the physical location of my target audience? Are they local? What kind of topics do people in this locality discuss on social media? At the end, you should have the following essential demographics clearly outlined: Gender Age Income level Location Marital status Occupation Education Background Ethnicity What Makes Your Audience Tick: Psychographics You’re now armed with some basic information to go with regarding your target audience. Now you must delve deeper into who they are as individuals. This is a very important step in determining what kind of content you’re going to craft on social media. To further hone the process of ‘psychographically’ identifying your customers, stay up to date with your everyday-employees, the ones who interact directly with customers on a regular basis. Ask them customer-related questions like: What do they value the most? What are their likes/dislikes and what that tells you about them? What kind of lifestyle do they have and how will my product or service integrate with their lifestyles? Now look at your product/service from a critical perspective. Questions like these can help you better understand your target base: What features do your current customers find the most appealing? When do they particularly enjoy using your product/service? And, do they prefer using it a certain way? Understand Who Your “Aspirational” Customers Are It may be too early to think about expanding your business, but if you are somewhat of a novice rather than a true beginner, you should start focusing on aspirational customers; these are essentially customers who may not be interested in your product/service today, but you might want to gear your business more towards them in future with the power of social media. Why? Let’s understand this in greater deal. The example I gave earlier of a performance car parts business – our target audiences primarily were speed junkies and performance car nuts. Motorsport schools team and bloggers can be seen as aspirational customers since they would offer us ‘commercial’ business, which is undeniably more profitable than business focused only and primarily on your target base. Additional Tips for “DIY” Target Audience Identification In case the above steps seem too cumbersome, you can always study one of your well-performing competitors. I’d suggest Twitonomy for this task as it will provide you with the detailed insights about their strategy, type of content they publish, who are the top followers are and what audience they’re targeting. Why not write all this down? You might gain valuable insights. Outline your psychographics and you may inadvertently stumble upon a number of target customers. It really helps if you give them names and unique personas. This way, you’re in a better position to create more compelling content. Pick the Most Ideal Social Networks to Reach Out Twitter When people interact with a small business on Twitter, they are much more likely to make future purchases from them. One of the keys to dominating social media is to have presence on the same social network channels as your customers. Twitter has well over 200 million active users so there’s a mighty good chance you’ll find your customer base on Twitter. Twitter can greatly help you build meaningful relationships with your target customers and even connect you with other communities or businesses you might be interested in collaborating with. Even if your startup has a relatively small team, you can use the “Twitter lists” and “advanced Twitter search” feature to build, improve and better manage customer relationships. Check out this post about Twitter growth hacks that can revolutionize your campaigns. When to Tweet? Since Twitter is so wildly popular among mobile users, it might be tough to get a fix on the best time to post. However, a little digging revealed (no surprise) that brand engagement is 17% higher over the weekend. Tweets posted on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays have the highest CTRs (click through rate) as opposed to middle-of-the-week posts. Use Buffer to your advantage to spread out the tweets so they get posted at the most opportune of times. As for the time of day, retweets are their highest early evening, around 5 pm, as most people are getting ready to sign off from work. For click-throughs, sometime around noon and mid-evening seem to work well; people are on lunch breaks, looking for something to keep themselves occupied or on the way back from work. In addition, Twitter Analytics does a good job of giving you a live break-down of crucial user engagement metrics. These tools can help you too: Twitter Analytics Tweriod FollowerWonk Buffer Social Bro HootSuite LinkedIn LinkedIn is one of those social networks, where ALL businesses, be it small or big, ought to have a presence. LinkedIn lets you establish credibility and authenticity of your brand through a business page – where all information pertaining to the who, what and where of your business is found. As a small business, this is a channel you really need to be on because you’ll run into potential customers and investors, as well as industry professionals by the numbers. Having a proper LinkedIn page is a great free marketing tool and if you know how to use it the right way, the benefits are reaped almost immediately. When to Post? Since you want to reach the largest number of users, you need to publish your content when they are most active. The best recommended times are from Monday to Friday, 7-9am and 5-6pm. Working hours have the most reach, so there’s no need to be too specific about times; test out what works best for your content and tailor it accordingly. Use Buffer to automatically choose the best time for your posts to go live, depending on the rhythms and preferences of your audience. Hootsuite also proves to be a worthy contender in this regard. I would also recommend that you post at least twenty times each month, which can help you reach at least 60% of your audience Check this post to learn how you can improve LinkedIn marketing strategy. Facebook Facebook is not only a great social media channel for effectively resolving customer queries and issues, but also serves as a great source for reaching out to new audiences. One of the greatest benefits of having a Facebook business page is the ability to communicate directly with prospects either through your wall or private messages. It is also an excellent opportunity to get to know customers up close and what it is they’re asking for. When to Post? What’s the best time to post updates in order to get the most user engagement? After some research, I’ve determined that engagement rates are generally higher on Thursdays and Fridays, perhaps because the weekend is close at hand; the closer the weekend is, the more people want to be away from work and the more time they want to spend on Facebook. So feel free to post more status updates close to the weekend, especially on Fridays. You may want to experiment with other days as well, depending on your particular user base, though I’m going to reiterate: the closer it is to the weekend, the better. As far as the best time of day goes, many will tell you this is largely up for debate, though there appears to be some common ground: around 1 pm to get the most shares, mid-afternoon for the most clicks, and if you want to look at it from a broader perspective, then between 9 am and 7 pm. So, in essence, early afternoon is probably the best time for posting updates and around dinner time or right before work, not being the best. I’d suggest closely monitoring Facebook Page Insights to give you valuable stats and info on how your social engagement is faring. How to Better Engage Audiences Before and After Product Launch Videos Before and after any product launch, you should harness the power of social media to let the world know what you’re about to unveil. Online consumers love watching videos. And why shouldn’t they? After all, there is something really engaging about seeing content rather than looking at it on banners or reading about it in a magazine. Create a product video to establish a personal connection between your product and intended audience. The type of product you have dictates the kind of video you’ll make. For example, women’s shoes might showcase a well-known model taking a stroll on the side-walk. If you’re about to release a mobile app which keeps track of your fitness level, you might advertise an uber-fight man running or lifting weights while keeping track of his exercise regimen or calories burned. You could also make a personal video where you’re speaking to your social media following about the upcoming product. Checkout this video from DollarShaveClub.com: Contests Social media contests are a highly effective means of engaging your audience, in addition to building loyalty and brand awareness. Before your launch, get your audience involved in the launch process even if they are unaware of what’s in store for them. A contest is a good way of enticing your audience just enough to spark interest without giving away too much. Twitter and Facebook are quite receptive to contests, so that’s a good place to start. Brand Advocates Pre-launch is the optimal time to get as many audience members involved as possible. Your brand advocates need access to a channel through which they can access exclusive information about the soon-to-be-launched product which is when Twitter lists, Google+ Communities and Facebook groups can be utilized. Sync it All With a Hashtag Use a hashtag to round up all your brand-related activities. It’s uniqueness means that audiences can easily identify you and share all your content across a variety of social media channels. A hashtag facilitates conversations revolving around your product right before launch. Talking about an upcoming product and creating hype is a highly crucial aspect of social media marketing done right. What to do Post-launch Once your product is launched, there’s a crucial window of opportunity you just don’t want to miss. Focus on Numbers You must be very diligent when it comes to collecting numbers to know how the audience is responding to your marketing efforts. Numbers such as: Number of Fans & Followers Engagement percentage on your posts and tweets. A sublist of people who opted in as brand ambassadors Which hashtag performed better? Work on Future Launch Plans Try not to sit on your success for too long: set a date for the next launch which might open up a range of new and exciting possibilities. This is a chance to improve your overall process, fix or change approaches that didn’t work well the last time, and improve overall organization and scheduling. This way, you can foresee some of the challenges that lie ahead, especially since you’ve collected plenty of data in advance. Here are some benefits of running this drill: You’re in a better position to understand what needs optimizing and when to schedule events – in the end, you’re looking at better conversions. It’s a chance to find partners. It lets you plan content strategy accordingly, knowing what audiences responded to previously. And, the opportunity to build a stronger more trustworthy relationship with your users presents itself. Bonus Tip: You can also take advantage of these really great social media management tools: Engagor SocialCentiv Sociota Livecube Offerpop Notify Bottle Nose Crimson Hexagon Cyber Alert Social Cast I hope these practices will prove to be beneficial for your business. Let me know your thoughts about it and if there is any tool or tip that I missed out, do share in the comment section. | Build A Mobile App Today!
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21 Tools to Monitor and Grow Your Social Presence | BuildFire

21 Tools to Monitor and Grow Your Social Presence | BuildFire | Digital Marketing | Scoop.it
Just about every company you talk to or read about has embraced the power of social media, particularly in recent years. Business owners and entrepreneurs have acknowledged that social media is the next big thing of the future and are quick to cash in. In essence, social media is not just about sharing content with your followers but rather discovering new and diverse opportunities to serve customers instantly, grow followership, build the brand, and much more. If we talk numbers, it is no surprise that almost half of the global population is living and breathing social media. As Vala Afshar points out: https://twitter.com/ValaAfshar/status/575132658801512448 Here we list more than a couple of super-awesome tools which not only let you manage your social accounts but also help you grow and monitor your social presence whilst outpacing your competitors. Buffer Buffer has become the ultimate choice for most social media marketers. This superb tools allows you to schedule updates according to different time zones, in addition to providing a complete analytics overview of your updates, in terms of “most popular” and “least popular”. It also lets you monitor the number of clicks your updates receive, and many other interesting features. Buffer also offers integration with Facebook, LinkedIn and Google Plus. See how it works: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rW3qalPO5pU Price: Basic Package - Free, Business Package - $10/month Cyfe Imagine a complete dashboard that gives an overview of brand mentions, demographics metrics, engagement opportunities, real-time reports, interesting widgets and tons of other great features. Say hello to Cyfe. If you need to track the different aspects of a campaign on a daily basis, this tool will be your trustworthy advocate. Price: Basic Package - Free, Premium Package - $19/month Oktopost This tool is designed for managing B2B social media marketing. You can schedule your content; create different campaigns, track performance of each campaign, engagement rate & conversions.  The best feature of Oktopost is that you can integrate your Salesforce and Marketo CRMs so valuable leads-related data is just a click away. Price: Free 30 days trial – Premium Package - $55/month Mention Brands are now very curious to know what people think or say about them on the social media and web sphere. To fulfil this need, Mention is your messiah. It is similar to Google alerts in some ways except it delivers instant results from all the major social networks including Twitter, Facebook and Google Plus. Mention provides metric-data of more than 42 languages and you can get instant notifications via email, even if someone casually mentions your brand on Twitter. See how it works: https://vimeo.com/89410551 Price: Basic Plan – Free  – Premium Package - 29 € /mo Sprout Social If you’re a fan of a great design and interface equipped with high end functionality then Sprout Social is something you can’t afford to miss. Gorgeous graphical representation of data, real-time monitoring, loads of CRM & reporting tools, analytics, team collaboration, Android/ iPhone apps and various other benefits are offered. The best thing about this tool is its simple design and the way they incorporate countless features; and better still, you won’t require a special tutorial to know how to use it. See how it works: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZEhmcVgnFRY Price: Free 30 Days Trial – Premium Package - $59/month Nod3X This tool completely transforms your social data into something that gives you a clear edge over your competitors. Nod3x also helps you identify influencers within your industry and gives suggestions on the basis of your data, like who you should connect with, what hashtags you should use, what are the best performing days etc. among other great features. Price: Basic Plan - £75Per Month BrandWatch Brandwatch is a very powerful tool that gives detailed insights of ongoing communication about a brand on all social media channels. BrandWatch says their sentiment analysis feature can capture both positive and negative customer sentiments across all blogs, articles, news, forums & social media. With support of 27 different languages, 70 million+ data sources and numerous features, this social media tool really is in a class of its own. See how it works: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4hx1F95hzSY Price: Pro Package - £500/month ShareTally ShareTally is an instant tool that tells you who has socially shared any link. Imagine the scenario, when your plugin crashes and you have to present social numbers from scratch to your client or boss. Well, in this catastrophic situation, ShareTally has your back. Just put the URL in the Tally bar and see the magic happen within seconds. Price: Free HootSuite This is another highly popular social media management tool for businesses and individuals alike to manage, collaborate, schedule & track campaigns. By connecting with over 35 different social networks,   HootSuite is the easiest web-based dashboard that gives instant data on the performance of social accounts while being integrated with Facebook Insights and Google Analytics. See how it works: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bXizarnDodE Price: Basic Plan – Free , Pro Plan - $9.99/mo Social Mention Social mention is among the most favorite ‘listening’ tools for social media marketers. It analyzes data in a completely different and detailed format with four metrics: Strength, Sentiment, Passion and Reach.  You can also set email alerts, download results in real-time with top keywords, hashtags and sources. Price: Free Trackur Trackur is another social media monitoring tool that gives you the freedom to explore your audience in a more sophisticated manner. Just point to what you want to monitor and it will search every blog, mainstream media, forum, videos and social media. It also reports on who’s talking about you and what their authority is, including their Klout score. See how it works: https://vimeo.com/43406502 Price: Free 10 days trial , Pro Plan - $97/month Tweet Binder This is a great Twitter tool to keep an eye on your own hashtag performance. Just input your hashtag and it gives you a detailed report on conversations, images, tweets containing links, retweets and reach; you can also share these results with your followers. It’s a great tool for organizing Twitter chats and for a live Tweet Binder demo, participate in the weekly chat hosted by SEMRush, using the hashtag #SEMRushChat. Price: Basic Package – Free , Pro Plan - $45/month Radian6 Radian 6 is a product of exacttarget, the company more commonly known as Salesforce. This monitoring tool shows real time conversations about your brand and automatically converts them into stunning visuals. It is not limited to social media but can also track over 150 million public sites (blogs, comments, forums, videos and photos) across the world and presents every minute detail about your brand. If you want to build your own brand in a major way, this one is highly recommended. See how it works: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bTZYFwKFh6I Price: Basic Package - $600/month Twazzup Marketers call it the “Twitter Search Engine” because of its real-time search capabilities. Sign in with your Twitter account and enter the company name, keyword or hashtag you want to search. Before you get a chance to blink, it displays information on top influencers, most active and latest users, popular tweets, top RTs links, related trends and photos. You can also directly get in touch with these users. Price: Free Beevolve If you want to manage your marketing, and monitor activities under one dashboard then you ought to try out Beevolve.  This affordable tool gives a good overview of your social media marketing campaigns by showing post statistics, demographics & channel measurement. For the monitoring, you can utilize their comprehensive dashboard with competitive intelligence capabilities, real-time conversations, channel sources and top follower reports. Price: Starter Package $19.95 /month HowSociable This superb tool behaves like an examiner and judges your performance across all social channels. It gives you a magnitude score out of 10 based on the activity performed within a week, on over 36 social media sites. It can be a great tool for competitive analysis as it identifies the channels your competitors are most active on, and where you need to catch up. Price: Free limited account. Basic package $9/per 3 months Lithium It’s a powerful social media management tool for serving customers in a timely manner. Standout features include: role-based separate UI, content publishing, unified social inbox, knowledge base, CRM integration & clear ownership with pre-defined templates. It analyzes data across all social media channels, from blogs, comments, photos and videos, and provides it to you in a nice graphical format. See how it works: https://vimeo.com/85399829 MentionMapp Mentionmapp allows you to analyze Twitter connections in a unique visualization. The more you interact with people, the denser your nodes get. You can view which hashtags your most engaged followers are using and who they are talking to. This revolutionary tool can get you many targeted followers. Price: Free Twitonomy It is rated as the best Twitter analytics and monitoring tool as it gives you full authority to search everything about your own Twitter account as well as others. Once signed in, it gives you all the vital statistics on the first screen which includes: how many tweets you make per day, how many mentions you get, who retweets you the most, top hashtags you use, how many links you share, and many more. Price: Basic Plan – Free , Premium Plan - $20 BuzzSumo This has got to be one of my favorite online tools that I just can’t get enough of. There are many great features found within BuzzSumo, however, for monitoring your social presence, I strongly believe you just cannot go wrong with this one. It gives you a detailed overview of what kind of content is popular and sought after in your industry and what the social numbers are. By navigating to the “influencers menu”, you can check the most influential people in any industry. Price: Free trial available, Pro Package $99/month Sendible If you run multiple accounts and want to control them under one roof, Sendible should be in your arsenal. From monitoring brand mentions to critical data analysis; it does everything to make a social media manager’s life easy. And yes, they do have Android & iPhone apps. Price: Free 30 days trial , Startup package - $59/month The tools listed above are perfect for monitoring and developing the growth of your social presence. Is there a tool I’ve missed? I’m pretty sure I did so let me know in the comments section. | Build A Mobile App Today!
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