How to Hire a Marketing Agency When You Don’t Understand Online Marketing

I feel for anyone in this situation. Seriously. You know you need to be marketing your business online. You know you don’t currently have the skills required or the available time.

You probably don’t even have the time to learn enough to know if a given individual or agency knows what they’re doing.

Still, to avoid being taken in by a clueless or careless marketing agency, there are a few things you need to know. It’s worth the six minutes it’ll take you to read this!

Inbound Marketing Truth #1: It’s Not Cheap

If someone tells you they can offer you “full inbound” for $750/month, run away. To do all the work required is going to cost more – a lot more. Anyone who says otherwise does not know what “full inbound” means.

Inbound Marketing Truth #2: It’s Not Lightning Fast

Sorry. If you want instant results, you’ll need to shell out for Google AdWords and perhaps some paid social. This is not in itself a bad thing, but the advantage of inbound is that the benefits accrue over time – you …

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Overcoming Inbound Marketing Challenges - What if I have no budget?

Inbound Marketing Challenge: How to Implement Inbound with No Budget

One of the biggest barriers to entry to inbound marketing is a lack of budget.  So, what is a business to do? Not market at all? Just wait for business to flow in on its own? That is just going to lead to a bigger challenge, the “my business is in ruins” challenge. And we can’t help you there! So, before it goes that far, let’s find a way to make it work.

Stop Spending Money on Ineffective Marketing

Is there something you’re doing now that used to work, but just isn’t working as well now? Perhaps you’re still spending money on television or billboard advertising. Or, maybe you’re sending your sales team to several trade shows that just aren’t living up to your expectations. Used to be those brought in a decent amount of business, but perhaps now you are just throwing money away trying desperately to return to the days when that worked.

It’s nothing to be ashamed of. Most of us have those skinny jeans in the back of the closet just in case one day they …

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What am I getting for my social media marketing services budget?

Social Media Strategy and Management – How Much Do I Get for My Money?

When your car needs repairs, you know you’ll have a bill for parts and labor. Did you know that the hours listed on your bill might have no basis at all in reality? Yes, it’s true. I heard it on CarTalk. Seriously, though (and I am serious about CarTalk), most auto repair shops standardize pricing for common auto repair tasks. Timing belt on a ’95 Honda Civic? That’ll be 5 hours labor (I’m guessing – do they even have a timing belt? I digress). It may be that the work is done by a mechanic so experienced that it’ll take him 90 minutes, or it may be done by his kid who takes 7 hours and requires a trip to the ER. In either case, you’re paying for 5 hours.

“Outrageous,” you say! “A rip-off,” you cry! But I ask you – did you get your timing belt changed? Does it really matter to you whether it took two guys two hours …

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3 Ways to Save Money on Inbound Marketing

3 Ways to Save Money on Inbound Marketing

“Money is no object!” said no small business owner, ever. Maybe one day I’ll hear from one of those rarities and get to use all the wonderful inbound marketing magic at my disposal. Until then, budget will always be an issue. Some say that limitations actually foster greater creativity, and I agree. When you can’t spend unlimited time and money on everything, you’re forced to make ever second and every penny really count.

Still, when a business owner comes to me with big dreams and a tiny budget, the first thing to overcome is the “I want it all, but I don’t want to pay for it.” mindset. Part of me wants to give every nice business owner with a great product or service first-class service at a freight-car rate, but I can’t – and usually they understand. Still, this doesn’t have to be the end. There are other options!

Focus on Your Best Bets

So you can’t afford to do it all right now. Should you wait until you can? Certainly not! Doing as much as you can now …

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How Can #Twitter Make Money For My Business?

Twitternomics – How Can Twitter Make Money for my Business?

Can Twitter really make money for your business? This one is similar to the biggest question my late father had about my work, “People PAY you to Tweet?” Haha. Yes, Dad, they do – but it’s not that simple. I was happy to have the chance to show him why businesses do pay for help with Twitter – effectively using Twitter really CAN make money for your business!

The strategies and techniques for building a business with Twitter are similar to general suggestions on how to monetize social media, but the potential benefits, mindset and mechanics of each platform differ somewhat. So, how do Tweets, Retweets, Mentions and Follows turn in to increased business profits?

Twitter Generates Targeted Website Traffic

Sharing your blog post links with relevant and intriguing updates brings to your site people who want to know about your products, services, or information.

Pro Tip: Have your followers help spread the word for more visitors. Using hashtags increases the chances of a Retweet by …

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How Can I Monetize Social Media? Six Ways #socialmedia increases sales.

How Do I Monetize Social Media? Six Ways Social Media Increases Sales

“How do I monetize social media?” That was one of the questions submitted when we asked our Facebook fans about commonly-asked online marketing questions. Engagement and growing fan counts are all very nice, but if it doesn’t lead to a better bottom line, is it worth the effort? Perhaps you’ve wondered yourself – is there a way to make money from social media?

How Does Utilizing Social Media Lead to Increased Business Profits?

It doesn’t automatically, but you knew that. In fact, if your business is not ready for social media, your efforts could actually backfire.  With an investment in time and a commitment to ongoing quality, however, you can expect to see any or all of these six profit-boosting benefits. Note that with one exception, these benefits don’t form a straight line to increased sales. But the path from awareness to new customer is rarely a straight line, anyway.

1. Social Media Increases Exposure and Builds Brands

It’s not rocket science. Being on …

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measuring the success of lead generation

Measuring the Success of Lead Nurturing and Marketing Automation

Marketing automation can simplify your inbound marketing, allowing you to make better use of marketing and reach a more engaged audience. The term ‘marketing automation’ is most commonly used to describe the software marketers use to manage leads from first contact to purchase. Marketing automation tools can be used to trigger a series of introductory emails to educate leads about what you offer. They can also help you segment your leads and deliver intelligence about leads to your sales team.

1.     Segmentation Intelligence

Segmentation intelligence includes visitor behaviors, personas, demographics, etc. that can be used to segment your audience in order to send more targeted content and offers based on their individual wants and needs at a given point in the sales process

What to Look For

Marketing automation helps you to be a smarter marketer by enabling you to identify and differentiate between segments of leads. Marketing automation tools can help you to identify these points of differentiation, such …

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Measure your online marketing success eBook. #ROI #Marketing

Measuring Your Online Marketing Success – New eBook

We get it – really.  You carve out enough time to do some online marketing and hope it pays off, but the last thing you want to do is pour over endless reports full of numbers that mean nothing to you and get you no closer to knowing what’s working and how to improve.

That’s why we created this eBook. We’re not naturally “numbers” people either. We prefer words, stories and relationships to facts and figures and maybe you’re the same way. We promise you – you can tame the online marketing metrics beast!

We’ll look at some of the most important metrics and help you break it down. Each number to watch includes:

An easy to understand definition, A goal or trend to shoot for and, A “how to improve” section for real results.

Who should read this Online Marketing ROI eBook and why?

Anyone using online marketing for their business who is not sure which metrics to track, what they mean, or what to do with the information.

There is so much …

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Online marketing - how to get more for less. Eight tips.

Online Marketing – Eight Ways to Spend Less and Get More

So, your online marketing is working, but times are tough, and you need to cut back. Or, maybe it’s time for an audit and you know your budget is going to be questioned. And really, everyone loves to save money. When push comes to shove, can you really get more for less when it comes to online marketing? Maybe.

Get Better at PPC

Spending a fortune on Google AdWords or Facebook advertising? It’s easy to do! Did you know you can dramatically cut your costs by simply learning how to create better Google AdWords ads and ad groups? It’s true! Google uses a “relevance” score to determine how much to charge you. Either spend some time learning about AdWords and Facebook ads, or hire someone to set it up for you. A moderate investment now can save you a lot in the future.

Create Better Landing Pages

It costs just as much to create a crummy landing page as an inspiring one, but a good landing page will make the most of your PPC traffic AND your …

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Why email marketing still works.

Email Marketing- The ‘Old-Fashioned’ Method That Blows The Rest Away!

Since when is email old-fashioned? Well, it’s been around over forty years now, and how things have changed in that time! With all the talk of email overload and Gmail’s new tab layout, you would think that email is rapidly going the way of the dinosaur. Not so – and good thing, since email has the highest ROI of marketing channels, producing $57 for every dollar spent. (via Oglivy One Worlwide)

Why Email Marketing Still Works

What’s the first thing you once you get to work and grab a cup of coffee? Chances are, you fire up the computer and check email. Experts will tell you this is not a good way to stay productive, but it seems to be ubiquitous nonetheless! Some other reasons not to give up on the old online standby:

Email is Easily Trackable

When you use an email provider like HubSpot, Mail Chimp,  Constant Contact, or AWeber, you can see exactly who opens your email, who clicks on a link, and even which link they …

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