Automation 360: How 4th Industrial Revolution changes marketing

In contrast to the three previous industrial revolutions when people interacted within quite narrow communities of their families and friends, the current 4th Industrial Revolution (IR4.0) exposes the huge global society to everyone connected to the internet. Now it is paradoxically possible to communicate in any mode be that one-to-one (or peer-to-peer), one-to-many, and even many-to-many via social media. What challenges do the contemporary marketers face in such a multi-channel communication?

On the one hand, the consumer audience is transcending borders and nations to become global. That’s why marketers should be able to cover thousands, oftentimes hundreds of thousands of the international customers almost simultaneously. On the other hand, the ample supply of goods in the market generates a fierce competition among brands when every single customer matters. That’s why marketers should establish personal relations with literally each client.

Is there a way out from a tense confrontation among such mutually exclusive factors? Who can help marketers respond to the challenge of IR4.0? And which technology can save marketers from a split personality caused by synchronically desirable globalization and customization? The answers follow.

Too big to be ignored

The very purpose of the 4th Industrial revolution comes to the total digitization of every process where it is ever possible. The most apparent implication of such a principle takes place in the information technologies. According to stats, more than 3.8 billion email boxes are available in 2018. More than a half of email users enter their inboxes via mobile gadgets. Email keeps primacy in terms of ROI brought to brands in consequence of their digital marketing campaigns. Thus, the contemporary marketers have to dive headfirst into the digitized customer relations. An average statistics dedicated to the email contact lists starts calculating subscribers in thousands. It is clear that manual processing of all emails in every marketing campaign is the Herculean task any marketer can hardly cope with. However, the bulk sending procedures have long been known to both legal marketers and spammers. That’s why the real challenge for the marketers implies making their bulk sendings meaningful and relevant to the huge subscriber audiences.

Personalization takes effort

How to take care of every subscriber? This question is not idle for the marketers whose contact lists contain thousands of emails. The common logic suggests dividing a subscriber audience into several groups basing on their interests, shopping histories, as well as on any other relevant indicator. In such a case, the simplest approach comes to making huge tables where all data retrieved from the communication with subscribers could be manually amended. Will the Microsoft Excel be of any help then? Probably it will, but the more reasonable method is to create a special software capable of providing an automatic segmentation of the subscribers. However, a proprietary software will require many thousand dollars of investment along with many months of programme development. Such a solution is unfortunately far from being feasible in every particular case. There has to be another way to provide marketers with an effective personalization of their campaigns.

SaaS to the rescue

Even though the notorious digital revolution made marketers face many challenges in terms of both the size of customer audiences and customization of marketing campaigns, some revolutionary new methods of doing business appeared thanks to IR4.0 in fact. One of the most viable and trendy approaches in the contemporary business environment is defined with such a specific word expression as (something)-as-a-Service. Many various terms can be put into the expression instead of “something”: Business Process-as-a-Service, Platform-as-a-Service, Software-as-a-Service (SaaS), and even Product-as-a-Service which determines the very essence of the approach. In brief, it implies a transformation of an object into a process. Taxi is the oldest example of such an approach when a car becomes a transportation service on the basis of rent. Now it is possible to use the capabilities of some specific software without having to either purchase or install it on your computer. Google Docs, for example, makes the MS Word software redundant, especially when your OS is not Windows.

Marketing Automation-as-a-Service

Here we are achieving the reasonable solution capable of meeting the contemporary marketing challenges. In addition to the SaaS approach, the solution follows another fundamental trend of the present moment in terms of the so-called sharing economy. The latter implies sharing some facilities or products among many users. The apartment owners share their housing with the other people via AirBnB application. And that is how the majority of services are to be arranged in the future. Nevertheless, even today every digital marketer can join the trend since the other professional marketers offer their web-based marketing platforms for sharing. Look at the universal bulk sending system from SendPulse, for example. As a team of professional digital marketers, SendPulse offers everyone to benefit from their rich practical experience reflected in their advanced marketing software. This is Marketing Automation-as-a-Service. And this is for sharing.

How Automation 360 meets IR4.0 challenges

Automation 360 is a synergetic web-based software system allowing marketers to re-arrange their routines in the efficient automatic manner. As a subsection of the holistic SendPulse bulk sending platform, Automation 360 is created by marketers for marketers. In response to the personalization challenge of large subscriber audiences, Automation 360 makes some predetermined software algorithms automatically perform many tasks that marketers had to do manually in the past. The core idea of Automation 360 implies using various behaviors of customers as the triggering events generating one or another marketing campaign. Hence, however massive is a subscriber database, a marketer can figure out and set up a personal approach to every particular recipient. What makes the system unprecedentedly effective is a combination of such basic communication channels as email, SMS, and web push notifications. In addition, Automation 360 helps marketers enforce their reputation via an SMTP service allowing messages to pass successfully through various spam filters. And the most important is that Automation 360 is accessible via any browser whatever devices and operating systems marketers use.

IFTTT in marketing

Specific programming principles and algorithms are occupying the discourse of modern marketing. And this is for a reason. The basic formula of any programming language IFTTT (If This, Then That) works well at the level of marketing software in terms of arranging automatic workflows. Automation 360 allows marketers to specify various variables reflecting the conditions at which the customer’s behavior triggers a particular reaction from the marketing system. This stage corresponds to the “If This” section of the IFTTT formula. The “Condition” logical block reflects such a stage in Automation 360. After that, a particular flow of the system in the form of a certain marketing campaign starts working automatically until a predefined marketing goal is achieved. This is equal to the “Then That” part of the formula as well as to the “Action + Goal” blocks in Automation 360. Thus, the marketers can act as just operators whose task is to figure out what they want to get from the subscribers. The rest will be done automatically by Automation 360.

Conclusion

Quite a specific modus operandi is expected from the marketers in the days of the 4th industrial revolution. Huge international customer audiences – in tens and hundreds of thousands – require meaningful and relevant marketing campaigns. Moreover, every particular customer matters when brands fiercely compete in the ample contemporary markets. Hence, both the global outreach and personalized communication make the marketers look for the automated but flexible approaches to their workflows. Only advanced marketing software platforms can act likewise. The Automation 360 system from the universal bulk sending platform of SendPulse meets the two progressive trends of nowadays: to be software-as-a-service (SaaS) and to belong to the sharing economy. Thus, a relevant response to the challenges of IR4.0 is possible only through the automated system created by marketers for marketers within the same digital paradigm.

12 Ways to Build Strong SEO Foundations

The secret to building a successful website doesn’t solely rely on wonderful UX and UI. To drive traffic and eventually drive sales to your website, you should apply search engine optimization on your website. However, the concept of SEO is as structural as other strategies could be.

A strong foundation in SEO can reflect your business’ objective goals. If your website’s SEO strategy lacks the foundation to make it “future-proof”, you definitely won’t see any ROI from your investment.

Google’s getting smarter; with its machine learning capabilities, what takes months to accomplish can now happen in real-life. So if you’re website’s not getting any traffic, you should look under the hood and check if you have the necessary components to rank in the search results.

Technical SEO: Building Foundations to Rank Better

Prevent risks by checking out this essential checklist you should work on your website’s SEO strategy:

Robots.txt

These crawlers would communicate with search engines spiders. There are only few who deals with robots.txt, a single overrule could knock you off on search engines. Robots.txt is pretty handy if you want to implement site-wide rules, but it is important that you check this first to see if you’re blocking important pages, especially those target pages that you want to rank in the SERPs.

301 Redirects

Redirects are a fickle thing to implement. While some SEOs prefer redirects because it is direct, sometimes that’s not the case that you want to implement. Generally, we recommend assessing pages that you want to redirect. Perform a redirect if the two pages are identical, for example, www to non-www pages. Beware of implementing 301 redirects as it may create an infinite loop if you’re not careful.

3. Canonical Tags

Joost de Valk of Yoast defined canonical URLs as a way that allows you to tell search engines that certain similar URLs are actually one and the same.

Canonical tags may be confusing for some, but let’s see this way. For example:

You have two pages, http://example.com/canonical and http://example.com/canonicalization.

Use 301 if: there are no technical reasons hindering you from doing so, then by all means implement that 301!

Use canonical tags: if redirecting will disrupt the user experience or it doesn’t make sense to redirect it because it’s just another version of the page, use canonicals.

Rand Fishkin of Moz has explained the best practices of using canonical tags in a Whiteboard Friday session.

4. Relative vs absolute links

This is a debatable topic for SEOs and web developers. While it may be convenient for developers to use relative links in a site, it doesn’t work the same way as for SEOs.

Relative links are coded as <a href = /page>, while absolute links are coded as <a href = http://example.com/page>.

Relative links are prone to scraping, duplicate content, and costing Google real money. Ruth Burr Reedy discussed this in a Whiteboard Friday presentation at Moz, and this is where it gets technical: Google has an allocated crawl budget that costs them real money. If a site doesn’t have their architecture in line, chances are Google wouldn’t bother crawling the rest of your site. Absolute links and a better architecture can make it easier for the spiders to crawl your site and get it indexed.

5. Search-engine friendly URLs

To give you a clearer picture, let’s say your page gives out:

https://www.example.com/good-url

instead of:

https://www.example.com/asdfgh123456

Ensure your URLs are easy to understand by users and search engines. Aside from giving reliability and assurance that your site is not just another hacked or spammy page, it simply abides the golden rule of not placing your business at stake as one of the poor and unusual URLs.

6. No-follow links

There are instances that your website is being linked up with something too far from your field. But sometimes you needed to credit a creator if you want their work on your end, in this situation you can add a no-follow tag to the link.

This will help search engine emphasize your website by being notified that the given link is not as important as your website. However, be cautious in applying no-follow tags on your links. While it helps you segment link juice to more important links, we reckon that you shouldn’t over use it. Maintain a healthy balance of do-follow and no-follow links.

7. Sitemap

If your website is ready to be indexed, you would need to take the chance of submitting it to the search engines. You can submit it too even if you’re re-indexing, and if you have several changes on your site.

Remember that we discussed a bit about crawl budget? You can help Google crawl your website better with multiple sitemaps. If you’ve been using a single sitemap, try create multiple sitemaps to get your pages crawled and indexed better. Using a WordPress plugin like Google XML Sitemaps by Arne Brachhold can help you create those sitemaps easier. If you own a smaller website, you can use the free version of ScreamingFrog to generate your own XML sitemap.

When you’re done uploading your sitemap/s, you can send it directly to Google via Google Search Console and Bing via Bing Webmaster Tools.

Metadata

The best rule one should think through regarding SEO is having content written specifically for humans and not for the search engine itself.

Metadata has three parts: links, descriptions and the title, of course. Appropriate keywords should be included in meta descriptions and titles but not to the point of placing everything on it to emphasize what your content is all about.

The best meta description one could ever provide is attracting and crave-worthy reasons in just 230 characters on why searcher should click your site.

You can always check your competitor’s code to see what they are aiming for in ranking.

Language tags

Language tags would rely whether you’re using one language on your content or not. But if you prefer having different language on your page, it’s better to use hreflang tag to ensure the searcher would be directed to the same leading page everyone has been guided to. Aside from avoiding a penalty for duplicate content, it will also help you present the same content you wanted to show off.

Search engines are really meticulous in detecting language. Use one language to your site as much as you can especially if you don’t need other languages to optimize your page.

Structured Data Markup

Structured data, also known as schema markup, is another type of code that makes your ranking boost in SEO. It also helps search engines organize, crawl, and display your content easier. Using Structured Markup can help increase your website’s click-through rate or CTR because there is useful information about your website that makes it more relevant or click-worthy for a user.

Working with search engines using structured data helps to communicate on what your data really means. It might be one of the most technical things you can do but placing effort into this is a very wise move.

Live pages

Posting your page live would really attract random people visiting it. So make sure that put your pages live if and only if you’re ready for searchers to check your content out.

If you’re using any kind of CMS, there’s a higher chance of your published page to be added to your sitemap that will ping the search engines. But if you really have to put out a live page and you’re not yet ready to have it scanned by viewers, using a no index tag before putting it live is the best option to rely on just remember to take it off later.

Page speed

Did you know that page speed is one of the ranking factors Google has standardized? They even made it easier to go faster with their Accelerated Mobile Pages project, applicable to almost every continent on the Internet.

SEO experts prefer to lessen page load time, so if you have ways of trimming of some MB packages on your site the better. You can always use page speed tools to see how your website is performing.

Moreover, remove unnecessary code bloat, you can also do file compression to diminish the size of JavaScript files, CSS, and HTML that are larger than the standard 150 bytes. This will ensure your server speed and spot-on ranking. If you want to go in-depth with your page speed optimization, we recommend downloading Lighthouse, a Chrome extensions SEOs can use to do a quick audit on their site.

These focal points are some of the basic but the most important foundation you would need to optimize your website and boost your SEO ranking. If you made some mistakes on your site, this is your chance to have it corrected. SEO encompasses a wide variety of tactics to optimize your site to increase its search engine visibility. A little bit of technical SEO can go a long way for your website; start optimizing your website today!

Sarah McGuire is a Digital Strategist for the Best SEO Company in Canada. She takes an in-depth, hands-on approach to startup social business strategy. She has experience in digital marketing, social media, content strategy, and marketing communications.

3 Ways to Optimize Your Site for Voice Search in 2018

SEO can be an enigma sometimes, but it’s a lot easier to figure out when you accept that it changes a lot — and that occasionally, those changes are radical. In 2018, if you want to achieve pole position in the SERPs, you need to add voice search optimization to your arsenal of your tactics.

In this article, I’m going to show you how to do it the easy way by ranking for long-tail keywords.

Who doesn’t love the idea of voice search? It’s quick, super convenient, and it means users can search for stuff on the go.

Plus, it’s just undeniably hip.

In 2018, voice search technology is better than ever, while respected entrepreneurs and movers and shakers in the business world like Gary Vaynerchuk suggest it’s the absolute future.

The stats back him up. Half of all searches will be voice by 2020, while in the same year around 30% of all searches will be carried out without the use of a screen. This is largely because voice search is more precise than it’s ever been. In fact, its accuracy is now at around 92%.

All this means that you need to get on board with voice search optimization before you fall way behind your rivals and end up playing catch-up.

Why long tail keywords?

You might be under the impression that, since we’re slowly making the transition to voice search, keywords will no longer matter.

“Please tell me I never need to use a keyword research tool ever again!”

However, they still matter just as much as they ever did. Sorry! The only difference is that long tail keywords matter more where voice search optimization is concerned.

A short tail keyword is uber specific and can simply be just one word, such as “builder.” It’s a super broad keyword that’s hard to rank for.

Long tail keywords, on the other hand, are easier to rank for because they’re more specific and can pull in a descriptor or two. “Men’s black leather jacket for disco night” is a long tail keyword that’s hyper-specific, and which might be so exclusive to your niche that you climb to the top of Google.

Crucially for voice search, long tail keywords more closely resemble natural human speech. When people speak into their device, be it Google Assistant, Amazon Echo, or Cortana, they speak like they would if they were talking to a friend.

No one is going to shout “Builder!” into their phone. Instead, they might say something like “Affordable builder near me.” This phrase is longer and quite specific.

Let’s take a look at 3 ways to make the most of long tail keywords and optimize your site for voice search.

1. Answer questions with in-depth content

“Google, why does my dog have fleas?”

“Alexa, can you tell me that causes diabetes?”

“Siri, what do angel investors do?”

The above are examples of how search is going to look. Not next year or in 2020 but literally tomorrow, next week, and next month. Your customers are speaking into their phones using long tail keywords, asking questions and expecting answers. And unless you start to answer them, you’ll be dawdling at the back of the SERPs.

It’s time to start answering questions on your site. There are two ways you can do this:

  • Long form content
  • An FAQ page

An FAQ page can provide answers to common questions about your product or industry. The easiest way to come up with questions your customers are asking is to actually ask them. Alternatively, check out forums, Facebook groups, and your rivals’ websites.

Long form content will take more time, but it’s well worth it because it attacks the SERPs in more than one way. Firstly, you can start to rank for specific long tail keywords that your customers are using. Secondly, you get a shot at ranking on featured snippets.

What is a featured snippet? A featured snippet is displayed at the top of Google in response to a user’s query as per the image below.

It’s essentially an in-depth answer to a question. The answer is so in-depth, explicit, and contains the right long-tail keywords that it’s been chosen by Google as the best one. As such, it’s achieved the highly coveted position 0 on the SERPs.

When thinking of a question that needs answering, carry out the keyword research you usually carry out, but also search for question keywords, too.

2. Loosen up and be more conversational with your seed keyword phrases

Some of us struggle with seed keywords simply because we make them too stuffy.

For example, consider this sentence:

“Professional graphic designer Minnesota.”

It doesn’t flow naturally, and it definitely isn’t conversational.

When you’re optimizing your site for voice search, you need to start thinking conversationally. Here is how we could spin that above sentence instead:

“Where can I find a professional graphic designer Minnesota?”

Once again, we’re using a question phrase, and then we’re going to provide the answer. The sentence is now in line with something people will search for.

3. Get into peoples’ minds

Do you know how people think? Of course you do, you’re a human yourself! And from now on, it’s time to start thinking about how people speak.

Long tail keywords for voice search are all about how humans really speak to each other, which means you can’t keep using the same long tail keywords you’ve been using in the past. Clunky phrases like “content marketing manager salary” no longer cuts it.

To get into peoples’ minds and discover how they talk into their phones, you can try a tool such as Answer the Public, which appends search terms using words such as “with” and “for” in order to gauge what voice device users are actually looking for.

However you approach voice search optimization, remember to use your keyword research tool to pick out the right long tail keywords, and shift the focus to conversational speech patterns and questions.

Just remember that it’s pretty much all about mimicking the way we talk.

 

About the author: Aljaz Fajmut is an internet entrepreneur and founder of Nightwatch — a search visibility tool of the next generation.
Follow him on Twitter: @aljazfajmut

5 Amazing Tips to Get the Most out of Your Email Marketing

Email Marketing is much more than sending an email to a potential customer in order to engage audiences, generate sales and other marketing goals you can serve with email marketing. It needs a strategic approach and that’s what email marketing strategy is all about. The popularity and budgets for email marketing only seem to be increasing. The reason? The multiple benefits including highly measurable results, increased brand awareness, cost-effective marketing and easily shareable.

While email marketing can be done by anyone, not everyone knows how to do it well. Most email marketing strategies are ineffective because they are haphazardly planned, and companies and individuals ultimately give up on them. The truth is, you need a really good strategy to constantly produce, repurpose, and promote engaging email.

This article outlines the five tips leading to a successful email marketing strategy.

1. Target the Decision Maker

When you’re marketing to other businesses through email, you need to pinpoint and then target the right decision makers, i.e. there is no point reaching to someone who doesn’t have the interest or power to acquire your service.

My initial email marketing strategy targeted managers and then directors. The goal was to engage those who can execute my services. I gained a 23 percent response rate. While this is pretty high, these results are a bit misleading because 55 percent of those replies were being passed along to other managers or directors, and many of those were given up.

I then spent good hours segmenting the corporate hierarchies of 15,000-person organizations trying to figure out strategic entry points. This was time consuming and hard to measure. Instead, I decided to reach C-Level executives because to make it simple, people must consider emails that come from their coordinator.

If a company C-Level Executive passes down an email to a subordinate, that employee is going to follow-up. Once I started targeting C-Level Professionals, the pass-along rate of response increased to 80 percent.

2. Optimize Emails for Mobile

If emails pass on without optimizing for mobiles, you’ll are going to lose a huge portion of your target audience. Most of the people prefer to check at emails on their mobile devices: 67% of emails are opened on mobile and tablet, compared to only 33% opened on a desktop. The best strategy is to design emails that are mobile-friendly i.e. they should optimized to be viewed on a Smartphone, Desktop and Tablet!

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Each time you send an email, you should be aware that a maximum number of your audience is going to check your message on their phones or tablets — not on their desktop computers or laptops.

Your target is to not only get your emails checked and read, but also to make your audience experiences just as strong as if the messages were opened on desktops. A mobile responsive website design displays your content properly no matter how someone views your website, and you can ensure that the emails you send look great as well, whether or not you have mobile-responsive email template.

3. Make use of Plugins to Track Email Open Rates

Email prospecting is constantly developing. As soon as someone point out what works, everyone starts to make use of it. And then it no longer gets the results! The best way to keep up with effective marketing plan for your industry and audience is to use email tracking software for your own open rates.

Importance of Tracking Email Opens

All businesses can benefit from tracking email opens, especially businesses which is mainly based on email marketing campaigns. By tracking information like which emails are being checked and which are converting, you can see how effective your marketing materials actually are. You can use this information to find out what kind of offers and campaigns work best for you.

There are many helpful tools (paid and free) that will let you know exactly when your email is opened. Use the tracking tools to keep an eye on your emails, and try testing and comparing different approaches. You’ll get immediate idea on what works and what doesn’t work for you, your prospects and your target market. This puts you in control of your marketing plan and ensures you to stay on top of writing emails that your prospects actually read.

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4. Test your Emails

One of the most helpful aspects of email marketing is that it can be tested. Following common “best methods” or settled “rules” is not a way to reach your marketing goals because what works for one audience won’t necessarily work for yours. Testing is your biggest partner. You should always ‘test for the perfection’ in your email campaigns.

A great way to increase subscribers is by testing everything to see what has the most impact. By using testing on your emails the design, services, offer, GIF, subject line, and all the other elements of an email campaign – one at a time, you can decide what your subscribers want to see, which will help you lower the unsubscribe rate on your campaigns. Testing every element in email marketing campaigns is a continuous process, and you should use tests on a regular basis to determine what gets the most engagement.

Important Elements of Test

The subject line is the most important email factor to test, followed closely by the content of the email itself. But there are many other elements of your email campaign that are just as testable. Some things you can test in the message include:

  • Subject line
  • From name
  • Headline/sub-headline
  • Content
  • Promotion/offer
  • Post-click experience (landing page A versus B)

Here, are some of the benefits of Email testing I’ve brought to let you know how effective it can be for your next email marketing campaign.

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5. Personalize Your Emails

Personalization goes a long way. Some people choose to invest in systems that will allow you to add people’s names to the subject line and body of the messages, but this approach is not for everyone. You can segment your mailing list based on your requirement, for example, by geographic location, age or purchase history and then send messages written specifically for each group. Example: “This is a quick message to check in and make sure that you are happy with your purchase of our — Widget you bought from us last month. I also wanted to let you know about an upcoming sale we’re having on accessories for the —.”

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Make your emails relevant to the customer by sending emails based on their interests and purchase behavior. A trend that’s recently happening is automated email which basically uses advertising data collected based on customer’s behavior on other digital channels. It also helps with consistent messaging and branding so the user gets a complete experience that is not fragmented.

Take Action:

If you have an email list that doesn’t have an automated welcome email for subscribers, create one today. You may be amazed at the open and click-through rates you see!

It’s your chance to win it with email

2018 is going to bring great opportunities to engage your subscribers with interesting, beautiful and well-written emails, and these tips will help you get there.

About the Author:

D:\Guest Posting\Alexander Daniel.jpg

My name is Alexander Daniel and I’m a Content Marketing Strategist, with a focus on branding. That means I’m an analyst as well as marketer, motivated by great ideas. I’ve had plenty of experience working with brands of all sizes. At present I’m working for InfoGlobalData a leading provider of b2b email lists, specialized for its services and marketing solutions.

Lead Nurturing: 4 Steps to walking the buying path with your customers

Imagine you have a downloadable resource on your flashy and attractive website. Your online promotions bring visitors to your landing page. A user signs up and downloads the resource.

You sent him an engaging email offering your products/services. He again comes to your website and buys your offerings. Since you provide value along with your offerings, your customers act as your brand advocates. Promote your business on their portals and stay loyal to your brand. How easy and simple! Is it the usual case with almost all online businesses? The answer is a big NO!

Agreed, for any business, lead generation is the vital activity. However, that’s not the end; in fact, it is just the start.

According to Marketo, on average, 50% of the leads in any system are not yet ready to buy.

What all you need to do is lead nurturing so that your leads get converted into your customers and in future, they can act as your brand ambassadors.

Process of lead nurturing

Basically, lead nurturing is a four-step process.

  1. Attract – your targeted customers to your website
  2. Engage – with them and capture their attention towards your offerings
  3. Nurture – them and create their interest in your offerings, explain how your products and services address their pain points
  4. Convert – them into your customers by helping them in validating their buying decision

Let’s take you through the 4 steps to walking the buying path with your customers – a deeper insight into lead nurturing!

Build a relationship with the lead

Lead nurturing itself means building relationships. Once you get the information about your lead, start paying attention to their activity and interest on your website. The leads who are at the top of the funnel are called marketing leads and those who are near the bottom are sales leads. Once the marketing nurtures leads, they are passed on to the sales team in their CRM. To walk through their buying oath along with them, in the very first place you need to build a relationship with them. Well, it’s not that easy as it is said often. To win their trust and establish a rapport, ask questions, respond to their queries, follow them on social networks, share important information with them, and offer them FREEbies.

Educate lead based on his buyer journey stage

To close your sales cycle, first of all, you need to educate your leads. And this education should be done on the basis of his user journey stage. Education at awareness stage will not be the same as the way you educate him at other stages.

It is not easy to identify at what stage your lead is. However, it can be done by analysing their entry points to your CRM. Visit your analytics and understand which ages they have visited, to what extent they have scrolled, check their social profiles and know what they are talking about. No doubt, this exercise requires logic and analytical skills. After all, marketing is all about applying logic, isn’t it?

Nurture through emails, but not to the extent of torture

Remember two basic rules of lead nurturing – don’t email your leads on daily basis and don’t send each and every email to all your leads. Email marketing is the best lead nurturing technique, but you should not torture them by sending irrelevant emails at the irrelevant time. Rather send them personalized emails on the basis of their user journey stage. When your leads are towards the end of a sales cycle, personalized emails are extremely helpful in conversions.

Each of the email’s subject line and body content should be personalized in such a way that it provides solutions to their pain points. At the same time, it should have a human touch. One of the most common yet evergreen trends is to use their names in the subject line and body content.

In short, sending right email to the right lead at the right time results in faster conversion process than usual. And, this can be easily done with the help of CRM. We recommend InfusionSoft as one of the best automation tools to handle your lead generation, lead nurturing and conversion emails.

Repeat the process until you succeed

To convert your leads into your customers and later on brand ambassadors, this is the only tired and tested procedure. Repeat the process until you succeed and you will!

Whenever necessary, re-engage with your leads. At any stage, if you realise that they are losing interest in your emails or offerings, provide them value to create a sense of urgency. Add incentives, discounts, offers, coupons, vouchers and other Freebies to the extent you can.

Email marketing is the most effective but not the only technique of lead nurturing. At times, lead scoring also fails if it lacks enough data. If email lists and emails aren’t working well with you, reach out to them via social networks, where they roam online. Keep checking your email analytics to assess the effectiveness of your emails.

Time to start now..?

The quantity of leads does not matter in your conversion process if you don’t know their quality. Not all your leads will get converted. However, they are all equally important to you. How? Those who aren’t interested should never be ignored entirely. Those who do not buy anything from you can also refer the right person to you, provided they have a positive experience in your funnel. Lead nurturing can help you get not only customers but also brand ambassadors. So, it’s the right time to start now!

Title: Lead Nurturing: 4 Steps to walking the buying path with your customers

Meta description: The goal of lead nurturing is to help progress leads from initial interest toward buying intent. Read proven and proved steps to walking the buying path with your customers for conversions

Author’s Bio

Raj Gautam

This article is written by Raj Gautam. He is CEO & Founder of QL Tech, Located in Perth, Australia. QL Tech is one of the best agencies that offer unique Digital Marketing & Web Development Services by the virtue of its dedicated professionals. Our professionals are extremely proficient in offering Digital Marketing.

3 Popular Ways to Repurpose Your YouTube Videos

YouTube is a close-knit network that isn’t like other social platforms. Famous YouTubers may spend years building their channel and base of followers, but the amount of support they get is paramount.

There’s no doubt about it – YouTube videos require creativity and technical skills to make. The time, labor, and talent that you pour into this project is more intensive than what you invest in other content.

Know this: you don’t have to wait to be a famous YouTube figure to make the most out of your videos. If you want to know how to make money online by leveraging your YouTube video, your imagination should go beyond creating it.

Check out these 3 Popular Ways to Repurpose Your YouTube Videos:

1. Embed Your Video into Your Blog or Website

People can get easily tired of reading textual posts. Even if you include photos in your blog posts, some readers would only skim over your content to find what interests them most.

If you have an online business, this limited attention could mean the make or break for closing a sale. Why rely on textual posts alone if you can captivate your audience and influence their purchase decision through a video?

Unless they are your long-time avid readers, people are likely to stay on a page if they’re watching a video rather than reading a blog post.

Use your YouTube videos as the information hub on your blog or website. If you have an important campaign to announce or new projects to market, posting a video about it on your blog is guaranteed to generate high engagement ratings.

2. Sharing Your Video as Social Media Content

No social media virtual assistant yet? No problem! YouTube has social media sharing buttons that make it easy to post content on Facebook, Twitter, and other sites. Just remember that YouTube is a different platform compared to other social networks and what may be considered a hit in YouTube may be too long or too heavy on other sites.

Tip: You don’t have to post full-length videos on your social channels. Posting clips or trailers of the full video can rouse up viewers to check out the uncut version on your website, Tayloright, blog, or YouTube channel.

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3. Converting Your Videos into Podcasts

There are many ways to download and convert videos into MP3. If you’re a business owner whose target customers include working moms or young professionals, this move will give you a better shot at reaching your market. Your target customers may be too busy to watch full-length videos on YouTube or your blog, but they sure can listen to a Podcast while on the go.

Some people also favor listening to audio content over reading a blog or watching videos online. If you convert your content into a podcast, your audience becomes wider and more diverse.

Creating videos may be challenging but your finished projects can be used in multiple ways and in different platforms. Which of your YouTube videos are you going to repurpose?

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Catherine vanVonno, the author, is the President and Executive Director of 20Four7VA, a global Virtual Assistant (VA) Service Provider. She holds a doctorate degree in Applied Statistics, Research Design and Program Evaluation from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University and has over 10 years experience in facilitating evidence-based strategic planning, product development, brand management, legislative communications, and medical policy. She is married and has four children. You can reach her at communications@20four7va.com.

http://20four7va.com/|twitter.com/20Four7VA

5 Simple SEO Tips for Beginners

Search engine optimization, backlinking, title tags. If you research on how to improve your website ranking in Google, you might have come across these terms every so often. While these are proven ways to increase your audience reach online, these concepts can be mind-boggling for beginners. You may even come across SEO materials that are designed for big companies with different goals and needs than yours.

What you need are search engine optimization (SEO) techniques which are crafted for smaller establishments. This is how you work with the resources that you have and add to your knowledge as you learn the ropes of doing business online.

Start with these 5 simple SEO tips for beginners:

SEO Tip #1: Maximize Internal Linking

You will read and hear about backlinking as you work to promote your website. While it is ideal to have third-party websites linking to yours to build credibility, it’s just as important to build links internally.

When you create a post, direct the readers to other helpful materials within your site. You can even do a series of posts about a single topic or cross reference your previous blog posts. Help your readers expand their search by promoting other pages in your turf.

When Google detects that readers spend a long time in your website and browse one page after another, your website value adds up. The result? Google will rank your page higher in its results pages.

SEO Tip #2: Invest in Social Engagement

Social media platforms are a gift to small business owners. Now, you won’t need to pay thousands of bucks to advertising agencies to let people know about your company.

Just create a page on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Pinterest to reach people easily and directly. Because people now spend more time on their mobile phones than watching TV or listening to the radio, you have a better chance of reaching them with social media.

Get a social media VA (Virtual Assistant) to take care of your regular postings, answer messages, and regulate comments. Because Google now considers traffic and activities in social websites for ranking, a proactive and engaging profile will increase your chances in results pages.

SEO Tip #3: Refresh Content

What posts in your social media or blog have gained optimum results? What topics roused the most reactions?

Update your content or draw inspiration from it to create a spin-off. This is a fast and easy way to make sure your posts retain its spot on the top of social feeds. If it’s a blog, it will keep your content up-to-date and relevant.

SEO Tip#4: Mind Your Site Speed

If you’re still building your website, it’s easy to get caught up designing it. That is why you need to watch the widgets, images, and videos that you add. While these may spice up your website, it can also slow it down.

Websites that take a long time to load make visitors frustrated and will likely make them abandon your page. No wonder Google added website speed as a ranking factor for websites.

SEO Tip#5: Get a Responsive Website Theme

Have you seen how your website looks like on mobile phones or tablets? When choosing a website theme or drafting a post, make sure that you select elements that will fluidly fit on any type of screen. You wouldn’t want your killer blog post to go to waste because it doesn’t load properly on a mobile screen.

Remember that people no longer access websites exclusively on computers. In fact, people will most likely come across your website on their smartphones. Recent studies have shown that the majority of web traffic now comes from mobile devices. That’s why Google updated its algorithm so that mobile-adaptable websites rank higher.

As a small business owner, you need to cover the basics and apply practical techniques to improve your website ranking in search engines. These 5 simple SEO tips for beginners are designed to help you do just that.

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Catherine vanVonno, the author, is the President and Executive Director of 20Four7VA, a global Virtual Assistant (VA) Service Provider. She holds a doctorate degree in Applied Statistics, Research Design and Program Evaluation from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University and has over 10 years experience in facilitating evidence-based strategic planning, product development, brand management, legislative communications, and medical policy. She is married and has four children. You can reach her at communications@20four7va.com.

http://20four7va.com/|twitter.com/20Four7VA

How Are Businesses Benefitted by Social Media Marketing

Businesses whether big or small have come to appreciate the immense benefits associated with social media marketing and its growing importance in this highly competitive world to attract new customers and to stay relevant. Today, your secretary is no more your mouthpiece to the outside world. She is no longer the first interaction point between your company and the outside world-this role is being fulfilled by the social media platforms, profiles, and websites.

If statistics were to be believed 37 percent of netizens actually follow all their hot favorite brands on various social media platforms and around 30 percent of the Internet users actually are in the habit of using social networks for researching products. With more and more people embracing the social media and their mobile devices in the purchase process, there are numerous reasons for your business to make its presence felt on the social media.

Here are some of the key advantages of social media marketing for your business.

Boost in Brand Awareness

Social media would be effectively exposing or introducing your services or company to a new audience. With just a single click, a multitude of people would be seeing your message. Social networking platforms would be helping you in identifying customers who are interested in your business-these are actionable insights that allow you to widen your nets and reach more potential customers.

Know More about Your Target Audience

Social media helps you to get the right information about your target audience. You get insights about what exactly your target audience is up to. If you are able to know and understand your audience well, you would be able to come up with creative strategies to reach your potential customers via content or advertising. Once you are able to cater to the specific needs of your target audience, you would see a definite increase in your conversions.

In this context, you must realize that while running your small organization and fulfilling your passion, you may get happiness but that may not be paying up your company’s bills. It is, therefore, essential for you to keep in mind that the intrinsic purpose of any kind of business whether big or small is making a profit. You must never forget this and ensure that the finances associated with your small business are given top priority. You may seek debt relief assistance from reliable debt relief agencies such as nationaldebtrelief.com.

An Opportunity to Offer Excellent Customer Service

More often than not, your clients would not be reaching out to you when they encounter some issues. Instead, they would prefer to post a query or a complaint online. In this digital era, more and more customers are taking advantage of the social media platforms and exploiting them as an effective point of contact between the customers and the brand and would be obviously expecting a response. Statistics reveal that around 42 percent of the clients who are in the habit of reaching out to the precise brands online would be expecting a response from the company within an hour or so. This is a great opportunity for a business to provide prompt and effective customer support and service.

Get Prompt and Direct Feedback

Social media helps you to get immediate feedback from your customers. Now you can get an idea about the success or failure of a campaign or a product in a very short time. This implies that now businesses have the opportunity to respond and even resolve disasters in the quickest possible way.

Enjoy New Business Opportunities

Social media marketing would be presenting you with immense opportunities that you would have surely missed if you did not have any social presence. Thanks to the social networking, you have an access to negative comments and unsatisfactory experiences. You could promptly address and adjust those issues and keep your consumers satisfied. This would be demonstrating to your potential customers that your company actually cares about its customers. This goes a long way in expanding your reach and effectively establishing your brand authority and this is made possible thanks to the customer messages on social media profiles.

Conclusion

Social media truly proves to be advantageous for your business in multiple ways. Now you could constantly keep an eye on what your competitors are doing. This way, you are able to get a competitive edge. If done properly social media marketing could be effectively boosting your sales as people who are really interested in your products or services would be responding positively to sales messaging. This would lead to conversions. You must remember to stay relevant at all times if you wish to enjoy success.

Author Bio:

Kelly Wilson is an experienced and skilled Business Consultant and Financial advisor in the USA.  She helps clients both personal and professional in long-term wealth building plans. During her spare time she loves to write on Business, Finance, Marketing, Social Media. She loves to share her knowledge and Experts tips with her readers.

How to Use Chatbots in a Social Media Strategy – for Fun and Profit

The social media marketing arena and, more generally, the digital marketing world is inevitably one of the most dynamic, innovative and disrupting sectors, with new technologies popping up almost weekly and swarms of tools and products being launched almost daily. One of the latest and most exciting innovations in this area is undoubtedly represented by “chatbots”, virtual assistants who can autonomously interact with users and prospects on Messenger, Telegram and many other platforms (even more exotic ones such as Amazon Echo or Microsoft Cortana) and manage in total independence information request, lead acquisition, first-level customer care and even complete e-commerce transactions.

Given the power with which this innovation is sweeping magazines and blogs (mainly related to social media but also more “pop” ones – even Vogue has launched its own chatbot!) and especially their practical effect, in this article we will explain in bit more details the “chatbots” phenomenon, showing you why this is really a trend to follow today and, above all, giving you a practical way to easily start offering to your customers this new, intriguing and powerful social media marketing tool.

What are chatbots?

Let’s start with the basics and define what a chatbot is – without getting too technical but trying nonetheless to understand a bit better what happens “under the hood”

A chatbot is, in its simplest and most essential form, a software that integrates with a messaging or virtual assistant platform such as Messenger, Telegram, Slack, Cortana or Amazon Echo and knows how to intercept and reply to messages that users send using that system. For example a Messenger chatbot is linked to a Facebook page and thanks to a very well documented API it is able to “hook” itself to the page getting called whenever someone sends a message, activating its internal algorithm so that it can interact autonomously with that person, either by triggering certain answers based on specific “keywords” that the user has typed or trying to interpret the “intent” of the message through artificial intelligence and natural language processing mechanisms, responding as appropriately as possible.

As you can see from this simple description, the flexibility of such a tool enables marketers and digital entrepreneurs to provide a full, rich and effective conversation allowing users to query a knowledge base, receive 24/7, 365 days a year automated yet possibly complete and useful customer support or consult catalogs, lists of articles and breaking news in a natural and engaging way.

Why yes and why now

Analyzing deeper the reasons why chatbots are a unique opportunity, right now and right here, we can identify at least five good because, 5 compelling arguments (actually, 4 + 1 “bonus” 😉 that should convince any social media marketer to start studying, designing and deploying chatbots – today.

Interaction is natural

If you think about it, the most natural way that mankind has to interact with other people (humans, businesses or brand), engage and discover the world is using “conversations”: ask questions, get answers, and proceed in a logical and chronological way through a series of verbal interactions with an “other” than themselves. Although artificial intelligence has not yet reached levels that mimics a real human (don’t let the marketing fool you about this…), chatbots already allow people to access the same information that could be provided by a website or a book through a discursive, interactive and definitely more natural interface, using questions and answers.

Billions of people are already chatting, every day

The number of monthly users of the major messaging platforms have already surpassed the people that use the “Big 4” social networks (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Linkedin): people love to “chat” especially on platforms such as Facebook Messenger (where every month almost one and a half billion users talks and interacts with friends, relatives, businesses and brand). The potential market is really immense, made by virtually every single person who has a connection to the Internet – no matter on what device.

Bots are always accessible from any device, anytime

Speaking about devices, at least 75%of people use the chat apps from their smartphones: what this means is that with a chatbot you will always be right in the pockets of your users, prospects and customers – who, as you can easily imagine (and see for yourself), are ready to respond very swiftly to any alert from their phones, especially those from chat apps. In addition to this, Messenger and other platforms “remember” what’s been said and the answers received, allowing the user to continue the conversion path that the marketer will have defined very naturally, almost without realizing it and no matter on what device, situation or moment he is chatting.

There is still little competition

If up until now we have seen why it makes (a lot of) sense to start using chatbots, we will now define why it’s important to start right now.

The first, main reason is that there still is (relatively) little competition. Of the 20 million pages currently existing on Facebook, for example, only 100,000 have an associated chatbot – less than 0.5%. Agencies, companies and consultants fast and smart enough to understand today the immense potential of this tool still have the chance to leverage such a powerful channel before the rest of the competition, gaining quickly the positions from which it will be very difficult to remove them. Remember the first businesses that have used SEO or Social Media Marketing?

They are (relatively) easy to make

The last (but not least!) reason, the “bonus” we mentioned before, it is that despite what might appear creating chatbots for clients and for oneself is, after all, quite simple to do.

Leaving aside the direct use of the API of the various platforms – obviously those with programming skills can start from scratch and write their own bot in the language they prefer, from PHP to Python, Java or C# – there are are a few platforms for creating chatbots that, a bit like WordPress does for websites, enable non-technical professionals, consultants and marketers to design, create and manage powerful bots ready to be used on Messenger, Slack Telegram and other platforms..

A Google search for “chatbot builder” should always provide the freshest results and allow anyone with reasonable computer skills to develop and deploy their own chatbot, often within minutes.

What do you think about all this? Have you already made a chatbot for you or any of your customers? Do you have doubts or questions? Comments are open!

Silvio Porcellana is an entrepreneur, marketers and coder working on the Interweb since 1999. In 2017 he created ChatbotsBuilder, a complete, simple and free-to-use platform for building Facebook Messenger chatbots.

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