• Russ Fradin
    Russ Fradin on July 29, 2014

    Why Employee Advocacy Matters

    Employee advocacy is an emerging new marketing strategy where companies empower their influential employees to authentically distribute brand approved content, create original content, and in turn earn recognition and rewards for their activity and participation.
  • BeverlyMay
    Beverly May on August 13, 2014

    Countdown to the UX Awards: Get Discounted Tickets and Vote Now for the Winners!

    We're a partner with the UXies, the premier global awards for exceptional digital experience, which is in downtown San Francisco on September 11 after 3 years in New York!
  • If you've recently put up a website for your business, it will not immediately appear when you search for a relevant keyword in your favorite search engine. To earn your spot on the first page of results, you need to publish SEO web content. Search engine optimization, or SEO, content consists of articles, blog posts, or other written website material that is created to feature prominent keywords.

    If you've recently put up a website for your business, it will not immediately appear when you search for a relevant keyword in your favorite search engine. To earn your spot on the first page of results, you need to publish SEO web content. Search engine optimization, or SEO, content consists of articles, blog posts, or other written website material that is created to feature prominent keywords. Search engines will crawl throughout the web, grab these keywords, and catalog them in an online database, where they are called up during keyword searches. The more keywords that are inserted into the content, the more frequently and prominently your website will appear in search results.

    So what is involved in creating SEO web content, and how can you do it to best maximize your business's potential?

    1. Pick a topic relevant to your business

    The first thing you need to do when writing SEO web content is decide on a topic that relates to your business. If you want your business to appear in more search results, you must write about topics that pertain to your product or service. You can direct the topic you choose toward a particular goal, such as increased sales, website hits, or social media shares.

    Writing with a specific topic in mind is also important when deciding on your writing style. From your topic, you can determine the type of audience you want to target and write the articles with those readers in mind. The language and style used and the information you choose to highlight should draw your audience, and you need to write according to their needs.

    2. Use relevant keywords

    Keywords are an important part of your content because they are the key factor for SEO. These words and phrases should be carefully selected for SEO web content because they need to effectively relate to your business and appear in searches. Make sure to research the keywords that customers commonly search for when looking for businesses similar to yours.

    When writing your SEO web content, also make sure that these keywords are strategically and frequently included. That way, your business's website will appear higher on the list of search results. These words should be integrated into the content so that it flows naturally. You don't want it to be flagged and marked by search engines as spam.

    3. Use relevant promotional techniques

    Once your content is published, you need to increase your SEO rating through other platforms as well. The more your website is linked to by other websites, the higher the ranking it will receive in the search results. To improve your linking strategy, create a reciprocal relationship with other websites by linking to them, and they will likely link back to your business in return.

    In addition, social media plays a huge part in the SEO web content process. By sharing your content on multiple social media platforms, you can ensure that your content is reaching different areas of the web, where it will be picked up by the search engine spiders.

    Publishing SEO web content goes beyond simply writing articles for your business's website. It takes research, writing, and promotion to effectively implement an SEO web content strategy and use it to improve your business's search engine ranking. If you're uncomfortable taking on this job or you simply don't have the time, you can outsource your SEO web content writing to Inklyo.com's writing services. Instead of laboring over content writing for hours and hours, you can hire one of our professional writers to craft finely researched, written, and promoted articles for your business's website. Visit Inklyo.com today to learn more about how our SEO writing can benefit you.

    Your sales and marketing departments may struggle with using each other's tools. If you get your marketing team using CRM software and your sales team using email marketing, you will create a more harmonious system.

    Often times an organization's marketing and sales teams are like the Jets and the Sharks from West Side Story.  You would love for them to just get along all the time, but they are on different wavelengths.  Your marketing team works in their bubble while the sales team works in a separate bubble.  Using two simple tools, you could work to combine the two teams' efforts into one process.

    CRM Software

    If you have ever been on a sales team you are familiar with a CRM.  This handy tool is great for tracking calls, scheduling appointments, taking notes, and tracking sales.  Everything a salesperson needs with the exception of the phone and leads to make this tool powerful.  CRM software is often overlooked by the marketing team because they feel that they filled the CRM with leads, and now it is on the sales team to make something happen with the leads using this tool.  

    We should stomp out this frame of thought.  Segmentation is a word that email marketers love to use, but without the use of a CRM can they really expect to gather all the data they can about an individual? Sure most email marketing solutions can segment by things like name or location, but when you can take that a step further you will start fostering stronger relationships with your email marketing audience.

    Picture a world where your marketing team uses a CRM in concert with their email marketing efforts to increase targeted messaging to prospects and clients.  When you make an effort to know something about your audience you will see positive results when you connect with them.

    Email Marketing

    Email marketing may be a crucial piece of your marketing strategy.  However, how often is your sales team involved in email marketing?  Never?  If this is you then listen up!  Email marketing is just as valuable to you for gaining new prospects as it is for closing current ones.  

    Think about sitting down with your sales and marketing team to brainstorm some ways that your marketing team can provide the sales team with emails that will help make the prospecting easier for the sales team as well as the prospect.  One way we have used email marketing with our sales team is through video voicemails.  If you are curious how a video voicemail works check out this video voicemail case study as well as this great discussion and examples of video voicemail.  

    Using something like this will help your sales team break the ice with prospects, and increase the connection rate.  Your sales team and prospects' time is valuable.  By identifying those that are interested with email marketing you can save your sales team a lot of time.

    Working In Harmony

    By overlapping both departments into these two solutions you can make a more cohesive team, and the best part is that your prospects and clients benefit because they are getting more personal interactions with your team.

    Social media marketing is fluid and effective tactics change from platform to platform. Are you timing your tweets, posts and updates in a way that exposes them to the most eyeballs and opportunities for engagement? If not, your timing may be off.

    As most businesses and marketers are well aware, successful digital marketing is heavily reliant on social media engagement. Social media is not just a forum for marketing, it also acts as an extension of your business and it’s culture. Regardless of the social media platform you opt to use, it is important to consider when you are posting in order to better reach your audience. After all, it does not really matter if you are posting the greatest content in the world if your audience is not online to see it, respond to it, and share it.

    Facebook

    When is the best time to get a user to click the Like button, comment on your Facebook post, and share it with others? Social Media Today reports that engagement rates on Facebook tend to be higher when workers hit a workday slump. In fact, Facebook engagement rates are approximately 18 percent higher on Thursdays and Fridays, meaning that the best time to schedule your posts for Facebook is often toward the end of the week rather than the beginning. In terms of the best time of day to post on Facebook, BufferSocial reports that around 1pm is the best time to get the most shares while 3pm is the best time to get more clicks.

    Twitter

    Twitter usage can be somewhat difficult to pin down due to the fact that many people may check their Twitter accounts multiple times per day. Making matters even more complicated is the fact that tweets can have a fairly short shelf life. TechRepublic reports that the lifetime engagement for a tweet peaks at around 18 minutes.

    Still, according to MediaBistro, Twitter engagement has been shown to increase by 30 percent on the weekends. During the week, engagement tends to peak between 1pm and 3pm, usually when workers are on a lunch break.

    Google+

    When is the best time to make the most of Google+? According to SocialNewsDaily, the best times to post on Google+ is between 9am and 11am. The worst times to post are between 6pm and 7am. In order to ensure that you take full advantage of Google+ audience engagement, consider posting during the middle of the week. Dharilo points out that Wednesdays around 9am are the best time to post on Google+. Keep in mind that as is the case with all social media platforms, this can vary somewhat based on your own industry and experience. According to MediaBistro, it is important to analyze your G+ page as well as your audience to determine the best time to obtain the best results.

    LinkedIn

    LinkedIn can be a great platform if you are a B2B business. Users of LinkedIn are more likely to take a few moments to review news before they begin their workday and as they are wrapping up their day or commuting. As a result, the peak times for this platform are primarily just before and after work, meaning that between 7am and 8:30 am and 5pm to 6pm are the best times to post, according to IT World. Tuesday and Thursday are the best days of the week to post on LinkedIn.

    Tips for Scheduling your Posts

    The takeaway from this is that you need to post when your target audience is online and that can vary, often dramatically between platforms. Buffer reports that they have a very dynamic schedule in terms of posting content to the various social media platforms. It looks something like this:

    • Facebook - 2 times per day, seven days per week, around 10am and 3pm
    • LinkedIn - 1 time daily, around 8:15 am, no weekends
    • Google+ - 2 times daily, around 9am and 6pm,no weekends

    With so many different best times for various platforms, you may wonder how you can possibly keep up with ensuring that posts go out at precisely the right time without spending all of your time managing your posts. The good news is that there are numerous tools available to assist you.

    When it comes to sending out a tweet and ensuring it is published at precisely the right time, consider using FutureTweets. With this service, all you need to do is type your tweet, select the publish date and time and then click the schedule button.

    If you're managing multiple social networks, you may need something a bit more robust so that you are able to manage everything from a single dashboard. HootSuite is currently considered one of the most versatile tools out there for scheduling posts across multiple networks. By taking advantage of the AutoSchedule feature on HootSuite, you can schedule posts in advance and at opportune times.

    Keep in mind that while general statistics can tell you a lot about the best time to post, nothing beats your own experience when it comes to analyzing the posting times that work best for your followers and content. Take advantage of social media tools such as RigniteSproutSocial and Argyle to assess the posting times that tend to generate the most engagement and interest among your followers. Ultimately, the sharing and viewing habits of your own followers on platforms such as Twitter and Facebook may well prove to be different from followers of other brands. Take the time to study your own analytics and learn from those patterns as you work to develop an effective schedule.

    The death of Robin Williams has been mentioned on all kinds of social media outlets - some more respectfully than others. Here are a few tips you should consider if you plan to discuss a celebrity's death on your social media pages.

    When news broke at the beginning of the week that comedian and actor Robin Williams had died after apparently committing suicide, the social media world immediately flew into a flurry of mournfully-themed posts about how much Williams’ work had personally touched their lives, and how much he’d be missed.

    Such a reaction is only natural considering how popular of an actor Williams was. It also raises two important questions: To what degree should your company’s social media sites pay tribute to a celebrity who has recently passed, and what kind of approach should be taken? Hopefully the information below can provide helpful guidance.

    Don’t Jump the Gun

    Russell Brand, Megan Fox and even Subway spokesman Jared Fogel have all been victims of celebrity death hoaxes in recent years. Such hoaxes have become so commonplace in today’s culture that a person’s first reaction is often to assume news of a celeb’s passing must be someone’s idea of a sick joke. In the case of Fox, all it took was a #RIPMeganFox tag to start trending on Twitter before people began wondering what the fuss was about and if she had truly died.

    Rather than risk making people start to panic across your social media pages, never report a suspected celebrity death until multiple sources like CNN, Fox News or the BBC have confirmed it. The clearest confirmation comes directly from the celebrity’s representatives. Even then, use words cautiously, being sure to rely on phrases such as, “The actor died of a suspected drug overdose.” Don’t use language that could make people assume you somehow got early access to unconfirmed information.

    Consider Carefully Posting Educational Information

    When actor Paul Walker died in a car crash at the end of last year, fans around the world were left wondering what went wrong, and whether driver error, or some sort of mechanical failure caused the accident. Investigators eventually determined speed was the culprit, because the actor was traveling approximately 90 MPH just before the impact that unfortunately killed him.

    That news is certainly bleak, but it’s also a potential opportunity to post something on social media that reminds people of safe driving tips. For example, a retailer such as CJ Pony Parts could offer suggestions about how to enjoy driving Ford Mustang cars without ignoring the rules of road, or perhaps talk about some of the safety features on the newest models of the cars. Once evidence came to light that Robin Williams took his own life, some websites decided to post suicide prevention hotline numbers in hopes of helping people who may be suffering in silence before it’s too late.

    These are certainly examples of when it’d be necessary to proceed with caution. In the worst-case scenario, social media followers might accuse your company of using a celebrity death as a self-promotional platform. Done correctly, such social media posts could help people who are struggling or need information

    Give People Room to Grieve

    Immediately after a famous person dies, many people turn to social media as an outlet for expressing their grief. That’s probably because it offers easy access to others whose lives were similarly affected by the individual’s work. There’s no harm in using your social media pages to let people unload their sorrows, but you may want to moderate the content more carefully than usual.

    Death tends to bring out very strong emotions, and it can often make people resort to fighting and bullying all while hiding behind the presumed protection of a computer screen. Frequent and diligent moderation requires time and effort, but it can help prevent things from getting out of control.

    There are obviously issues to consider before mentioning a celebrity’s death on your company’s social media feeds. Steering clear of the subject altogether could give you a reputation for being cold and unfeeling, but the tips above could help you cover a touchy subject with confidence. 

    Image by keiyac

    We’ve all heard it many times – blah blah… content is king. This is undeniably a valid fact. Your marketing teams have to create masses of good content, and do so often, to feed your social media activities. Without this regular (and valuable) content, social media simply cannot survive. But this is just the tip of the iceberg. Is content production really the only issue you have?
     
    We’ve all heard it many times – blah blah… content is king. This is undeniably a valid fact. Your marketing teams have to create masses of good content, and do so often, to feed your social media activities. Without this regular (and valuable) content, social media simply cannot survive.   But this is just the tip of the iceberg. Is content production really the only issue you have?  
     
    Who follows you, and how far does your content reach?  
     
    We’ve all worked hard to grow our follower base. You can grow a massive follower base by promoting content, and engaging in follower tricks like following-back and follow-Fridays, but this doesn’t really attract quality followers. Most of us realise that building a follower base with good numbers and good quality takes a lot of social media hustling, but that’s another story.
     
    So you’ve grown a good follower base in the thousands, perhaps, if you’re lucky, in the tens of thousands. That’s great, but realistically, your content is not going to be seen by most of your followers, and probably quite a bit less (they maybe infrequent users of social media platforms, or your content might be hidden somewhere obscure in their newsfeed). Whilst you might get a handful of favourites, likes, retweets and shares, your total impressions are unlikely to exceed that of your total followers. More importantly, your content is only likely to be seen by your followers, people who know you, and nobody else.
     
    My point is that it’s no good having killer content if you have no plan other than to distribute it on your own social media networks, to your own followers. You are probably just preaching to the converted!   Clearly, you need to be thinking about distribution before you create content.
     
    Adopt the right technology and distribute your content to the correct buying audiences.
     
    There are fantastic technologies that exist today that reduce this pain point in social media content distribution, and in some cases, remove it completely.  I may be biased, but I know from personal experience that there are solutions out there that allow vendors and brands to distribute their killer content much, much further, through their partners, retailers, employees and other brand advocates on social media.
     
    By providing your content to your partners, retailers, employees and brand advocates regularly, and letting them post this as their own content on their social networks, you will then be able to maximise your investments in content. You will open exciting previously unreachable new avenues for readership and enable your partners, retailers, employees and brand advocates to generate more interest around your brands and products.
     
    In other words, distributing your social media content efficiently maximises your opportunities for this content. You’ve done the hard work; creating rich and engaging content. Distributing and syndicating it via your interested brand advocates, will deliver the results.   So for me, content is king, but distribution is the queen, and she still definitely rules the roost.