Digital Strategy

Digital Strategy

The first thing to remember before undertaking your digital marketing efforts is to determine the strategy itself. Here is a series of questions to guide you through it.

Goal: What is your goal? Are you looking for immediate sales or cultivating awareness and doing branding? Your business goals must be tied to your marketing goals. If you’re looking for an increase in sales, then your digital goal would relate to the number of leads.

Buyer Persona: Who are you trying to reach? Is there a single consumer type or are there several? If it’s everyone, it’s no one. Who is your ideal customer? What traits do you expect most of them to share in terms of age, profession, interests? Can this be gleaned from actual data and not assumptions? It’s crucial that this be accurate. Can you use your web analytic tools to help figure this out? Spot has a form to help you complete to help define who you’re trying to reach. And the more you can zero in and make the message specific and relevant for them, the better your results will be. Remember – a message targeted to a 30 yr. old businessman is much different than what a retired couple would respond to.

Budget: How much do you have to spend to acquire a customer?

Competitive Landscape: Who are you competing with? What are they spending? What keywords are they using?

Existing Resources: What are your existing digital channels and assets? Is your website optimized? Do you have the ability to continue to add fresh content in the form of blogs, etc.?

Have you claimed all your directory listings including Yelp, Google My Business, Alexa, etc.? Do you have Facebook, Instagram, Twitter accounts (and others), if they are applicable to your business?

The answer to all of these questions will be your guideposts in determining your strategy or for the direction you give to the firm that is helping you.

Depending on your budget, you will then work to determine the ratios between paid, earned, and owned media. And the more you can coordinate between them so the same piece of content can be used to amplify your message, the better.

Owned media are digital assets that your company owns like your website, social media profiles, blog content and photos/infographics, etc.

Earned media is like digital word-of-mouth. Press mentions, reviews, people sharing your content on their social media and the like.

Paid media are tactics like Google AdWords, boosted social media posts or paid social media ads, sponsored posts on other websites (native advertising), etc.

If you do the hard work up front, and understand what has worked for you in the past, you increase your chances of success exponentially. And don’t forget tracking devices in everything so you know what’s working. Put it all on a calendar and create your marketing matrix so you understand what you’ll need when. Then put it into play and keep an eye on the analytics so you can continue to update it, test new ideas, and maximize your results.

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What are the elements to Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and why does it matter?

Search Engine Optimization

The statistics say it all – according to Search Engine Journal 93% of online experiences begin by visiting a search engine. And 75% of those searching won’t go past the first page when searching on Google. And you need those clicks, traffic and ultimately conversions. So how do you get there? Here are the elements that go into your ranking.

  1. You can buy your way on with Pay Per Click ads that will appear first when people type in the keyword(s) you’re paying for
  2. You can ensure your website is optimized – that means having a professional look at everything from the words used in headlines, to the description of photos (meta tags) to the relevance of the copy overall to the frequency and inclusion of potential search terms in new copy you’re adding in the form of blogs. It also must load fast and have other favorable metrics.
  3. Your website must also be optimized for mobile – that is, very easy to read on a mobile phone as there is “credit” for that with optimization.
  4. You can promote your website/blog content through social media
  5. You can find partners to create backlinks – that is, provide them with valuable information they can use that will result in people clicking through to your website.
  6. You can have an editorial story done (through a press release or other means) that rises to a high position

So how can you compete?

  1. You can create long tail keywords that won’t generate as many results overall, but will allow you to compete against the big guys, especially if your industry is dominated by big players. Amazon makes 57% of its sales through long tail keywords, so it works. Turns out long tail keyword conversion rates are almost always higher because people are looking for something specific, not general, which usually means they’ve already done some research and are moving on to the consideration/buy phase.
  2. Create adwords that address a searcher’s intent – if someone is searching for “best CRM” are they searching for a single company or an article that compares multiple companies? So even if companies claiming they have the “best CRM” show up in the results, your ad is the one they will click on because it promises information that lines up with the searcher’s intent.
  3. Write blogs and publish them often, and make them long enough to matter. In-depth content with examples and images, step-by-step information, unique and valuable – these are the elements to blogs that matter. And the good news? Content marketing is 62% less than other marketing and generates 3x the leads.
  4. Alternatively, you can also write articles, create an infographic, a podcast, or a video.
  5. Get included in “round up” articles – where a top-ranked author examines several companies in your industry. As that article rises, so does your positive visibility if you are reviewed favorably.

Spot Color Marketing is well-positioned to assist you with all aspects of SEO and guide you through the ever-changing landscape of digital marketing. Contact us today to set up a free consultation.

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Business slower right now? Seven things you should be doing in your down time.

digital marketing Portland

Unfortunately, yours may be one of the businesses that is slower right now, even if you’ve been allowed to reopen. What can you be doing right now to ensure that your business survives, and thrives, in the coming months?

  1. Make any needed physical property updates – new coat of paint, fix chips in wood fixtures, rearrange the space to make it more efficient. If any of your team is working virtual, decide how much of that should be ongoing if it’s working and what that will do to your future office space needs. Maybe a portion of your office should be converted to “hot desks” where remote workers can perch when they’re in the office.
  2. If you are a local retailer, should a portion or all of your inventory be moved online to your website or other outlets to add another revenue stream? Is it time to update your website in general? Integrate a blog into your site (and add to it regularly) and have someone help you optimize your website if you haven’t already to help move you to page one when people search for what you have to offer. When your website has the terms in it people are searching for, and you continue to add relevant, fresh content, search engines move you up and that means more traffic to your website and more leads/sales for you.
  3. Take a look at your advertising mix. TV viewership is way up, and radio listening is down with people not in their cars as much. Digital use has increased dramatically as well so it’s a great time to jump into digital marketing or consider increasing your spending in that area.
  4. Consider co-promotions since you may have more time to create them. Are there businesses serving similar clients? Is there a nonprofit you can partner with that can send out the messaging to their audience on your behalf? A percentage of sales that result from it back to the charity, etc. Now’s the time to be creative about finding new partnerships so you can reach new customers in new ways.
  5. When was the last time you really took the time to think about your 5-Year Plan, your 10-Year plan? Is it to position the business to sell at some point? Are there heirs or others who will take it over? Will it close when you decide to retire? If you’re not as busy with the day-to-day now’s a great time to consider these questions and plan accordingly.
  6. If your business is fairly successful and you want to empower and reward your employees, you could consider an Employee Stock Ownership Program or ESOP. Rather than paying taxes at the end of the year, that money can be used to set up a program that helps make your employees “owners” in the business after they’ve been there a set amount of time. If you’re small, it’s a great benefit alternative to matching contributions to a 401k and a way to attract and retain great employees, who also feel more empowered and likely to be more engaged as they are working on their own
    behalf as well as yours to help ensure the continuing and growth and success of the company.
  7. Consider what other items or services you could offer. Wants and needs of consumers have shifted and you will need to shift along with it. The status quo may not offer you a sustainable option anymore.
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Why Is Brand Identity So Important?

For most companies, building your brand’s identity is paramount. Businesses with a recognizable and memorable brand enjoy a “leg-up” on the competition because they don’t have to keep reminding clients or customers that they are there. Your brand’s identity are the visual elements (color, design, logo, etc.) that people can recognize and correlate with your products or services.

It is crucial that your brand’s identity be cohesive, consistent, and memorable. To establish a strong brand identity, you should take the following steps:

  • Understand who you are and your ideal client group
  • Know your company’s strengths and weaknesses (many people recommend performing a SWOT analysis to fully understand both the opportunities and challenges)
  • Make sure your brand identity matches your business goals and the goals of those in your client group
  • Focus your messaging. Don’t try to be everything to everyone. To establish a strong brand identity, establish a consistent personality and voice for your company, and make sure the message remains coherent

Need help building your brand’s identity? The experts at Spot Color Marketing can help you cultivate the right image in the minds of your clients and customers. Contact us at 855-766-6322 or reach out to us online to schedule a consultation to discuss your brand, your image, and your goals.

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Geofencing Stats and Benefits

In our technologically driven world, people are using smartphones phones more than ever. In fact, according to a Pew Research Center study, a vast majority of Americans – 96% of the population – own a smartphone. Tapping into this ubiquitous technology can be a game-changer for marketing. Marketing is most effective when it targets real consumers who have a need that you can fulfill in an immediate way.

With geofencing, you can accomplish that.

Geofencing is location-based marketing that uses cell phone location data to send a targeted marketing action, such as an email, text message, or social media advertisement to a consumer in a specific place. For example, when a young person enters a shopping center, they can be shown an Instagram ad for a special deal at one of the mall’s stores or be sent a text.

The average consumer spends more than four hours a day looking at their phones, and most of those people prefer advertisements that are personalized to their interests and location. Mobile ads with geofencing have double the click-through rate than regular ads, indicating that consumers are more likely to find out more about an ad that relates directly to them. What’s more, geofencing is proven to work because 53% of consumers visited a retailer after receiving a location-based ad.

Using geofencing, you can better target your audience, giving them a personalized experience, and spend your marketing budget more effectively. You’ll also be provided with better data collection that can help you to understand your customers.

At Spot Color Marketing, we’re experts at helping small businesses build their brand identity and revolutionize their marketing efforts. Please email us at spot@spotcolormarketing or call us today at (855) 766-6322 for a free consultation.

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Three Essential Techniques for Property Management Marketing

Effective, targeted marketing is key to growing your business. When you are in the property management business, it is often difficult to find the time to focus on new marketing initiatives. Unfortunately, that can mean losing out on meaningful connections and opportunities that can help your business grow.

If you are interested in improving your company’s marketing in the new year, here are a few strategies that you can implement today!

Get involved and give back

This one is huge! One of the most important ways you can get your name out there, get more visibility, and get name recognition is to get more involved with your community and to give back.

When people see companies making a difference and showing that they care, they remember. It creates good word of mouth and positive buzz surrounding your brand.

Try reaching out and partnering with other local businesses, sponsor local events, and participate in community activities or outreach programs. You’d be amazed at the difference this small step can make in your business and the positive impact it can have on your community.

Partner with Airbnb

Airbnb has been one of the hottest trends in the hospitality industry, why not get in on the action? Partnering with Airbnb is helping property companies stay relevant and competitive in the market today.

Market your values

Who are you? What do you stand for? Increasingly people want to know what the company’s they do business with stand for. Putting out a strong mission statement, marketing your values, and standing by them is not just a tool, it gets people in your corner and can help create brand loyalty. People want to feel like they are contributing to making their community a better place through shared goals, hopes, and dreams. Don’t be afraid to share yours.

Need help with your 2020 marketing initiatives? Turn to the professionals at Spot Color Marketing

Marketing may seem like a time consuming and daunting task. It doesn’t have to be. These are small steps you can take today to increase your brand awareness. Need more help or want to take things a step further?

Contact the experts at Spot Color Marketing. We can help you grow your business with tailored marketing solutions that meet your specific needs. SEO, geofencing, text advertising, web development. Let us help you get the word out about your business, and we’ll let you focus on what is important to you: providing the highest-quality property management services to your clientele.

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Raising the bar on transparency, choice and control in digital advertising

Advertising has made possible open access to quality information and communication on the web—it’s changed the way people learn, play and earn, and it’s made the internet open for everyone.

But the ad-supported internet is at risk if digital advertising practices don’t evolve to reflect people’s changing expectations around how data is collected and used. Our experience shows that people prefer ads that are personalized to their needs and interests—but only if those ads offer transparency, choice and control. However, the digital advertising ecosystem can be complex and opaque, and many people don’t feel they have enough visibility into, or control over, their web experience.

New protections and controls in Chrome

As you may have seen, today Chrome announced its plans to improve cookie controls. To better protect user privacy and choice on the web, Chrome intends to make it easier for users to block or clear cookies used in a third-party context, with minimal disruption to cookies used in a first-party context. While Chrome has long enabled users to block cookies, these changes will let users continue to allow their online banking site, for example, to remember their login preferences—a function that first-party cookies enable.

Chrome also announced that it will more aggressively restrict fingerprinting across the web. When a user opts out of third-party tracking, that choice is not an invitation for companies to work around this preference using methods like fingerprinting, which is an opaque tracking technique. Google doesn’t use fingerprinting for ads personalization because it doesn’t allow reasonable user control and transparency. Nor do we let others bring fingerprinting data into our advertising products.

The changes in Chrome will empower users to make informed decisions about how to control the use of their data for personalized advertising. They will also ensure users are able to continue accessing a broad range of quality ad-supported content, with confidence that their privacy and choices will be respected.

A new level of ads transparency

As the Chrome announcements demonstrate, transparency, choice and control form the foundation of Google’s commitment to users—and advertising is no different. With tools like My ActivityAd SettingsWhy this Ad and Mute this Ad, we make it easy for people to see how Google tailors ads for them, switch off individual factors we use to tailor ads, stop seeing ads from a specific company or simply opt out of personalized ads entirely.

But all of this is not enough. We believe you should also know what data is used for ads personalization and by whom.  

That’s why today we’re committing to a new level of ads transparency. We want to give users more visibility into the data used to personalize ads and the companies involved in the process.

As a first step, for the ads that Google shows on our own properties and those of our publishing partners, we will disclose new information through an open-source browser extension that will work across different browsers. The new information will include the names of other companies that we know were involved in the process that resulted in an ad—for example, ad tech companies that acted as intermediaries between the advertiser and publisher, and companies with ad trackers present in an ad. The browser extension will also surface the factors used to tailor an ad to a user, which we provide today.

The extension will display information for each ad we show a user, and will present an aggregated snapshot for all the ads Google has shown a user recently. In the future, we will look for additional ways to make it even easier for people to access this information.

In addition, we want to offer a simple means for others in the advertising industry to surface this kind of information. To that end, we will build APIs that enable other advertising companies, should they choose, to disclose this same type of information to users through the extension. We expect to begin rolling out both the browser extension and APIs in the coming months.

While offering more information privately to individual users is important, we also believe that making this type of information available publicly will help increase transparency at the ecosystem level. That’s why we plan to build tools that allow researchers and others to view and analyze aggregated and anonymized data from Google and other providers that elect to use these new APIs.

As we introduce these enhanced ads transparency measures, we’re eager to receive feedback from users, partners and other stakeholders so that, together, we can identify industry-wide best practices around data transparency and ads personalization, including ways that people can take action to shape their experiences.

All of the changes announced today represent an important step in ensuring that the ad supported web provides people with access to high-quality content, while protecting their privacy. We will continue to explore opportunities to evolve our tools and practices in ways that enhance user transparency, choice and control.

 

Original Source: GOOGLE ADS GOOGLE MARKETING PLATFORM

Written by: Prabhakar RaghavanSVP, Google Ads & Commerce

 

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Southern California Attorney Case Study

 

 

The Company:

Our client is a California-based DUI attorney providing high-quality DUI legal defense services to clients statewide.

The Situation:

Our objectives for this client’s project were to:

  • Target Torrance, California
  • Increase traffic to the website
  • Increase inquiries and leads
  • Increase sales for legal services

The Solution:

Spot Marketing designed a banner ad that reflects strength and legal expertise. Using our DigitalDirect solution we set up geo-fences around key areas in Torrance, California that are likely to receive higher traffic volume based on bail bonding density, crime rate and age. The client started at a 10,000 impression per month rate. We set-up retargeting to ensure that his ads were shown repeatedly to the target audience.

During the first phase of the campaign and 3rd month (January 19) the client was getting a .25% click through rate, which is successful, but we knew we could do better. We increased the impression rate up to above 20,000 impressions because the reach was not broad enough for the area.

The Results:

The Spot Digital Marketing team was able to deliver their client a campaign that immediately began performing. This project highlighted the extreme effectiveness of scaling up impression rates within a highly specific target demographic. During the month of February we increased impressions by 13,741 for a total of 23,741 and saw a 1.5% click through rate. This is over a 200% within 30 days and the client is happy with the results.   

 

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Tips for LinkedIn Marketing

LinkedIn is becoming an increasingly important tool to build your company’s brand. Remember that Spot Digital Marketing’s social media management services are always here to help – just call us at 503.477.4355 to learn how we can help your brand’s online presence take off. We’re currently working with a number of businesses on enhancing their LinkedIn practices. In the meantime, read over these LinkedIn marketing priorities for 2019 from Andrew Hutchinson of Social Media Today to see if your brand is on track!

Are you planning to make LinkedIn a focus of your digital marketing efforts in 2019?

For those that are looking to get more out of the professional social network, it can be helpful to know what others are doing on the platform, and what they’re looking to achieve with LinkedIn’s tools. That’s the focus of this new infographic from LinkedIn – the platform recently surveyed its members to get more insight into expectations, priorities and more, related to platform use.

There are some interesting insights here. The questions are obviously LinkedIn-specific, but it’s worth noting the most popular topics (the platform’s ‘Matched Audiences‘, which combines your data with on-platform insights, is a key focus) and what other marketers are using LinkedIn for.

You can read LinkedIn’s full report here, or check out the graphic below.”

All credit to Andrew Hutchinson of Social Media Today. Please find the original posting here.  

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5 Mobile App Marketing Tips

Calling all mobile app creators, marketers, designers, and more: “marketing is not a magic wand that can set anything straight and right with the swirl of a stick, it requires a series of intelligent moves and playing your cards right,” says Bhavya Kaushal of Entrepreneur.com. With that in mind, read on for five fantastic tips from Entrepreneur.com to strengthen your position in the mobile app market!

“Marketing is one of the most important tools in the business ecosystem these days. It is not a magic wand that can set anything straight and right with the swirl of a stick. Marketing requires a series of intelligent moves and playing your cards right. Moreover, coming to the app industry, in which different apps are mushrooming every day, it is important to understand which marketing strategy works best and how one can make them work.

Amidst the growing competition, it is important to possess that one thing that can give your mobile application an edge over the umpteen others in the market.  

Here are some simple tips to improve the marketing of your app.

Incentives

Today’s digital market is neck deep with mobile apps. So how can you ensure that your product stands out? Rahul Bahukhandi, CEO and Co-founder of LaYuva feels that Mobile apps have been using referrals and cashback to lure customers. “This incentive still works when an app wants to reach the masses.” Another important aspect, he adds, is how receptive the company is while receiving any feedback and incorporate the suggested changes to make the consumer experience better.

Strategic Campaigns

Marketing is driven to serve the two sides of the business – one is at the supplying end and the other is at the receiving end. Anupam Sengupta, Marketing and Revenue head Sqrrl feels marketing activities should ensure both sides benefit in the business cycle. He suggests KPI-driven campaigns with ad networks a good way to do so.

“Ad networks, in today’s digital market, have opened a new channel for growth, as they work in close collaboration with both the demand side (advertisers) and the supply side (suppliers),” says Sengupta. He believes that influencer-led campaigns can be another useful strategy because recommendations work really well in the world of marketing. “Influencer marketing has given organizations with a new channel to tap into, promising not just brand awareness but reach as well.”

The 4 P’s of Marketing

With so many new names in your playstore to cater to your needs, how can marketing strategy help a particular app to stand out? Gaurav Kapahi, Co-founder and CEO of GoldSeat, says, “You need a rock-solid marketing strategy from start to finish.” He adds that the perfect marketing mix is dependent on the product, placement, price and promotion. “It is important to prioritize the placement of your apps, and in case of mobile apps, entrepreneurs must try to go with social media marketing strategies.”

Partnerships and Collaborations

Partnerships are one of the easiest ways to garner a larger consumer base for your product. Ishaan Sethi, CEO and Co-founder of Delta Apps feels the same and adds, “We also collaborate with various queer organizations to help them reach a wider audience through the app and other collaborations that lead to a win for everyone involved.”

Sengupta also feels that strategic partnerships (value-based or commercialized) are very effective to implement.

Focus On the Offering

While there are many strategies that can come in play, everything boils down to the quality of your product. If the product lacks contemporary relevance or is not up to the mark, all market strategies will fall flat. Melissa Hobley, CMO of OkCupid, says, “We keep our energies focused on building a superior product and encouraging a community of kindness and trust where you can celebrate your story and find meaningful matches through it.””

All credit to Bhavya Kaushal of Entrepreneur.com. Please find the original posting here.

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