See past your digital obstacles
Right now, YouTube remains the dominant platform for video uploads, sharing and search. Many businesses have realised the benefits of video content in increasing the engagement they have with their audience online, and communicating ideas quickly - with little reading "effort".
For this reason, business owners often add creation of a YouTube account to their marketing checklist, somewhere soon after getting a logo designed and creating their website.
This is great. YouTube is a massive marketing opportunity for businesses and right now every video you create for the public should be posted there.
But that's not the end of the video story.
When promoting videos on Facebook, many businesses remain unaware of the power of uploading a video directly to Facebook rather than posting in their YouTube link. It's time to revisit your video strategy.
Why Businesses Should Load Videos Directly to Facebook
As well as uploading a video to YouTube, you should get into the habit of also uploading it to your business's Facebook page. Why? Here are three cracking reasons:
1. Reach more people than any other post type
Research from SocialBakers has shown that Facebook video posts have the highest average organic reach of all post types (video, status, link, and photo). This means that - without any payment to promote the post - a Facebook video will reach more people than any other post type.
Note also that Facebook considers YouTube links to be links, not videos.
2. Call To Action Link
Facebook enables you to add a clickable "Learn more" type link at the end of your video. Unlike a YouTube video which simply ends, a Facebook video can encourage the viewer to take further action, for example linking directly to a related page on your website.
3. Viewer Retention Reporting
In your page's Facebook Insights section, you will be able to see at a glance the number of people your video has reached, number of video views and average view duration.
But perhaps even more handy is the simple graph which visualises viewer retention i.e. the % of viewers who remained watching the video at each second throughout the duration of the video.
This can be a great tool to learn from. Imagine seeing a large drop-off in viewership after 11 seconds of your video, then reviewing your video to find that at 11 seconds into it you mention price. You could take this as an indication that your price-point may not be set competitively for your audience. A great, visual tool to gain insight from.
As with any post, you can pay to promote your Facebook video further - but for now it's the best free (organic) type of Facebook post you can run.
So if you have videos for your business, continue uploading them to YouTube, but if you're promoting the videos on Facebook - load them there directly.
And of course, if you'd like help working on optimising your Facebook content strategy, contact me today.
We've all seen ads on Facebook. Plenty of them we ignore, but every now and again something is truly of interest and we just might click...
While there are many ways to advertise on Facebook - including building page likes, increasing video views, and more - in this post I'll focus on how you can increase the success of driving traffic to your website and getting conversions (calls, enquiries, sales) from an ad placed on Facebook.
Facebook Advertising Fundamentals
As with any digital advertising, the success of your Facebook ad is dependant on having the following 3 things:
OK - this all sounds like marketing BS. What does it actually mean?
Common Facebook Advertising Mistakes
Often, people are disappointed with the results of digital advertising because they've been too broad and non-specific in their approach.
Let's take the example of a pet supplies store. A common mistake would be to run an ad as follows:
Why is this approach going to fail?
There are several reasons:
The Best Way To Run Ads on Facebook - 10 Tips
The following are the key steps to success for your Facebook ad:
Quick Tips to Fix a Facebook Ad Which Isn't Working
Are you paying for clicks which aren't converting?
If you're paying for a lot of clicks which aren't converting to sales or enquiries once they're on your site, then you've likely got a mis-alignment between the promise made in the ad, and the content they see on the page they arrive on after they click. Try fixing this for a seamless experience between what the ad says and what they read when they land on the destination page you set up for the ad.
Not getting clicks?
If you're not getting many clicks on the ad in the first place, perhaps the ad text / image / call to action wasn't compelling enough or was too broad. Try refining this, or contact me for help.
For help placing and optimising a Facebook custom audience advertising campaign, contact me today. I love this stuff and would be happy to help you succeed!
It can be hard finding time to write new blog content frequently, right? But have you ever actually checked what return you're getting on all the effort you put in to blogging regularly?
Recently I was at a conference and heard a fresh approach to content updating. The presenter was from a massively successful and highly-visited online recipe website and mentioned that each recipe was incredibly costly and time-consuming to create. Writing, testing, photography, editing of text and imagery, and eventually publishing.
This long-lead time is akin to the difficulties a business owner can have in finding time and worthwhile content to write about on a regular basis, to keep a website fresh and valuable to visitors.
Over time it became apparent to this business that it was a much better use of time and resource to revisit existing content rather than continually create it new. In the case of the recipe website, rather than creating new recipes endlessly, they chose to revisit and tag all existing recipes to make them more filterable and searchable. e.g. they created tags to enable visitors to not only find recipes containing a particular keyword or ingredient, but also to exclude them. Very helpful if someone is allergic to eggs and wheat and is looking for something to bake...!
The point is - there was a lot of value available to be unlocked in existing content simply by revisiting it.
Why should you revisit and update your old blog content?
Here are some of the key reasons why you should review and update old blog posts to make them increasingly relevant to today:
3 steps to update your old blog posts
Right, so there are many good reasons to look at updating your older blog posts. Here are 3 key steps on how to go about it:
Next steps to get quick wins from your website's existing content
If it sounds good but you don't know where to start, contact me.
Ever wondered how people come up with such great looking images to use throughout their website, or accompany their latest blog post?
The starting point is usually a creatively shot, highly relevant, or otherwise clever, high-quality photo. I italicise high-quality because that is especially important. The saying a picture is worth a thousand words is an understatement when it comes to communicating online. With so much image content (often freely available) it's no longer good enough to stick with low quality images you've taken yourself or lifeless stock shots you've found somewhere online.
A good picture will catch attention in a newsfeed, draw the eye on a website, and if cleverly done can communicate a point without a sentence being typed.
Royalty free stock images online
Wondering where you can find royalty free, high quality images without needing to pay for them or even credit the photographer? Three of my favourite free, high-quality image sites are:
So how can you take one of those images to the next level?
Easily edit images for free to use on your website or blog
There are many tools available to edit images, enabling you to do simple image correction work such as colour enhancement, add text, resize, etc. This used to be the domain of a designer with expensive image editing software, but those days are long gone.
Canva is one popular service to quickly and easily edit images online. If you're new to image manipulation it is certainly worth exploring. Personally I find Canva just a bit fussy... perhaps it's because there are so many avenues of different templates, fonts, styles, etc to burrow down, there is too much choice immediately presented. It may be just me, but I find I end up spending more time playing around than just getting an image tweaked and ready to upload.
BeFunky is an alternative which I much prefer. It feels like a sharper, more streamlined tool for free online image editing, which maximizes the image editing space and minimizes the number of choices you're presented upfront. This seems to make the process of image tweaking faster and easier. You're more focused on the outcome than endlessly tweaking and comparing different options.
There really are so many options for image enhancement and editing available, that even starting with the same image, two users could very easily come up with a very different finished product. Once some effects, text, and other graphic overlays are added, the results really can be surprisingly different.
And it's all so quickly done, free. In the case of BeFunky you don't even need to create a free account, just jump in and start editing.
If you need help coming up with a clear and focused content strategy for your site, to take the burden out of blogging, contact me now.
As a business owner, you are naturally curious to know what people are asking about your products, your industry, or your own business.
As a website owner, you are sure to be looking for fresh sources of content ideas to update your site with, on your blog, on a frequently asked questions page, or for the creation of some other great content.
There are many means of finding sources of new content ideas. Depending on your experience and what has been implemented for your website, some methods of finding ideas for new content can be difficult to master or make sense of. Someone new to using webmaster tools to find out what your audience is searching for may be quite overwhelmed for example.
At the other end of the spectrum, an easy, quick source of blog ideas is the related searches presented right in your Google search box every time you search.
An additional tool which is also free, easy to use, and provides another source of content ideas is FAQ Fox. As it's developer states, FAQ Fox is intended to help marketers find what common questions are being asked about their keyword on community websites.
Find New Content Ideas In 3 Steps
A simple 3-step process is all that's required to get inspired:
You will be presented with a list of links to discussion topics from community sites related to the this category, which contain the keyword you entered. From the above example you can see there are immediately several ideas for content you could consider developing for your own site and communications.
The success of FAQ Fox is quite variable depending on the keyword you have entered and the level of activity on the sites it searches for that keyword. In some cases you may come up with little, but in other cases there may be nuggets of gold in there!
Find more help on how to blog more often or contact me to assist with planning and developing search engine optimised content for your site.
I recently saw someone post to Facebook "Why are there ads following me around the internet?".
The comments that followed came thick and fast. Some seemed to know it has "something to do with cookies", while another warned it was the result of a virus.
This highlighted the lack of awareness of how these ads work from the viewer's perspective, but in turn a lack of understanding of the potential of these ads when used properly.
Why Do Ads Follow Me Around The Internet?
This type of ad campaigning is called retargeting, or remarketing. Retargeting is a type of online advertising that enables website owners to advertise to their visitors after those visitors have left their website.
According to ReTargeter, for most websites, only 2% of web traffic converts on the first visit. Retargeting helps businesses reach the 98% of users who don’t convert right away.
How Does Retargeting Work?
Put simply, a site owner puts a small piece of code on their website, which is not noticeable to visitors. Each time a new visitor comes to the site, the code drops an anonymous cookie into the visitor's browser.
Then, after that visitor has left the website, the cookie triggers ads to shown to that person as they browse around other pages on the web.
From a user's perspective, this can sometimes be creepy. From a marketer's perspective, it can seem like gold. The reason businesses often love remarketing is that they can "remind" previous website visitors of their brand, services, or offering - they could be considered "warm leads" or live opportunities because they already know about the business.
Should I Use Retargeting For My Business?
From a business marketer’s point of view, retargeting is a great way to get back in front of potential customers you may otherwise never see again.
But that potential customer may have a different view. InSkin Media conducted research to identify people's reactions to retargeted ads, and they varied widely from Annoying and Intrusive to Relevant, Clever and Helpful.
There are a number of ways a retargeting campaign can be made more effective, and less on the annoying or creepy side.
Want some help planning or implementing a remarketing campaign for your business?
5k A Day In May is an initiative of Newcastle based businesses Carnelian Projects, Carnelian Property Management and Inspire Property and Finance.
It is an initiative to raise awareness and much-needed funds for asthma research, through sponsorships of individuals or teams who commit to walk, run, ride or swim 5 kilometres every day throughout the month of May.
Full details are on the 5k A Day In May website (proudly built by Periscope Digital).
My support extends beyond the website build, as this May I am in full flight participating! While work and family commitments make it difficult for me to achieve a regular 5km each day, those close to me know I have a love of escapism and getting away for extended walks and hikes. So while I don't regularly clock 5km daily, I'm on track to achieve a cumulative total of 155km by the end of the month (so far up to around 80km).
Learn more and find out how you can support the cause this year (or make it even bigger as things are taken national in 2016) - visit 5kadayinmay.com.au.
Alt text, short for "Alternative text", is familiar to many do-it-yourself-website builders - though many see it as nothing more than a text box you can ignore when uploading images to your site.
In truth, alt text provides the opportunity to convey the purpose and content of an image in instances when the image itself is not viewed.
Wait, what? Well, alt text is not visible to most website viewers, however it may be displayed by web browsers when images are switched off, unable to be downloaded, or when content is read aloud by screen readers for those with a visual impairment.
Right. So you should add alt text to describe the content of your images, to make your site more accessible to those with a vision impairment. But you could probably get away with not bothering, right...?
Not so fast. Aside from providing a poor experience for many web users (really, don't do this), alt text is one of the many signals used by search engines such as Google to determine the content of the image. In other words, alt text should be treated just as carefully as any other piece of content on your website which you want to rank well in search results.
How Should I Add Alt Text to My Site?
So just how should you approach adding alt text to your site?
The World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0 recommend website editors consider four questions:
With those points in mind, you also want to keep your text brief.
View more quick tips to enhance your website, or contact me for digital marketing consulting help for your business.
This question is quite common. Once a business has passed through the initial stage of developing and implementing a content strategy, a plan of what content they want to write and who this content is "speaking" to, this new challenge occurs.
You might think all traffic to your site is good. Not really. In the same way that a physical store could see many people walk through and browse, but never ask a question or make a purchase, it can be disheartening for business owners to see that good visitor numbers are making it to their site, but few are making enquiries or converting to sales.
Does this sound like you?
Reasons for good traffic but a low conversion rate
When we say "conversion rate" here, we mean the rate of your website visitors which are meeting the goal of the particular page they're landing on e.g. making an enquiry, signing up to your newsletter, purchasing from you, etc. They're converting to do what it is you want them to do as a result of landing on that page of your site.
The reasons for this outcome could include:
How can I turn more website visitors into enquiries and sales?
There is no magic bullet on this one as every site and visitor mix is significantly different, though the following ideas are good starting points for most businesses:
Steps to improve your site's performance
Recently on a holiday up the coast, I wanted to check the weekend opening hours of a cafe I knew. It is a great spot, a favourite for wedding planners, formal diners and casual coffee drinkers given the waterside location, relative remoteness and good service.
I knew the name of the cafe, so it was easy to find in a search. Unfortunately, I was quickly able to see that the website did not do it justice at all! The design was very dated, difficult to navigate, not optimised for mobile devices, and did nothing to showcase the amazing location, view or menu.
In this case, having visited the venue before, I knew better and knew that I would have a good coffee and experience when I was there. But most people would not know this. I was surprised that such a great venue made such a poor first impression online.
As a business there is so much to focus on. You don't need to be an expert in everything. But even a simple website should have a level of thought and effort put into it to ensure the first impression of is a positive one. It isn't often now that the first impression of your business is when someone meets you or visits your premises. We're in a world of website first impressions and you need to ensure you're setting the right standard for your business from the first click. Make sure the first impression you give isn't the last.
If you think your website is making a less-than-excellent first impression, do something about it. Make sure your site is mobile-optimised and a dream to use whether on a desktop, tablet, or smartphone, ensure your site is easy to navigate and visually appealing and if in doubt - ask for help from a digital marketing consultant.
Go make some great first impressions!