Posts tagged paid online advertising
Is it Really Worth it?
Big SEO For Small Businesses online search engine optimization class.

So by now you've heard us talk up one side and down the other about "Big SEO For Small Businesses". We've talked about:

how it will save you time,

how it will save you money,

what's included in the class,

and how it's unlike any other SEO class or strategy you've ever seen before.


But one of the things we haven't really talked about is the true value of this class. Because we're sure you're wondering, is it really worth it?

The 15 lessons in this class go beyond just a "traditional" SEO strategy. They go beyond just fiddling with a few things on your website. And they go beyond what you ever thought was possible from organic search alone.

This class is designed to optimize all your marketing techniques for SEO so everything is working for you, all the time.

And on top of that, you're not only optimizing your content to show up in search, but we show you how to optimize your content to convert those leads into sales.

Let's put it another way.

If you were to hire us to manage all of this for you, you're looking at a price tag significantly higher than what you would pay by clicking the link below.

Purchase "Big SEO For Small Businesses" 

But despite the lower price tag, you won't be getting watered down information. This is the very same information we charge premium pricing for in our consulting practice. Included in this class is some of our very best tips on how to get your website to the first page in Google search, and we just can't wait to share it with you.

But, we suggest you click sooner rather than later because enrollment for this class closes tomorrow and you don't want to miss out!

How To Optimize Your Facebook Ads
Learn Hub Digital's quick tips on how to optimize your facebook ads.

Ok, so if you've had anything to do with Facebook in the past decade (that's right, Facebook has been around now for over 10 years!), you've noticed that it's gone through some major changes. What once was a mecca for small business owners who were looking for organic reach and inexpensive advertising, has now become a frustrating place of lost content just floating around with no one paying attention to it.

Algorithm changes over the past few years has significantly decreased the organic reach of business pages. It's gotten to the point now, where on average a business owner can expect that only 2% of the people who like their page will organically see what they've posted. As someone who spends a significant amount of time researching, creating and editing content to send out to the masses, that is a bummer. There's nothing worse than knowing you have something really important to say, without an audience to say it to.

Well, once you've mourned the loss of your organic reach (because trust us, it's not coming back), it's time to buck up and make the best of it. Despite some challenges, there ARE ways you can get great reach on the social media platform at a lower cost than other outlets, and those are Facebook ads. Trying them out? Below we're breaking down just a few tips to help you optimize your ads to ensure they're working the best for you.

1. Spend some time researching your audience and target them. When you're looking to target your ad don't just go by geographic area. Take some time to do some research on some of your existing audience's interests and likes. On Facebook you can target by general interests, things they've looked at on the web, and even other complimentary Facebook pages they've liked. Spending some time playing with the interest categories available for targeting can make a HUGE difference in your ad performance.

2. Pick the ultimate pic.  Ahh the ad image. This is always the most difficult (for many people) when designing an ad. The image is the first thing people will see when scrolling through their newsfeed so you want to make sure it not only makes sense with your content, but that it's attention grabbing as well. Find something with bright colors, interesting designs or a little bit of humor to ensure maximum results. And be sure to keep text to a minimum! While Facebook has loosened up a little on their restrictions, it will cost you more to run an ad with text in the image than one that doesn't have any. And be sure to keep it in the 1200 x 628 wide format so it fits the space nicely.

3. Start small with the budget. A lot of times people think the more money you throw behind an ad the better. However, recent studies have shown that dramatically increasing your budget will actually cause your Cost Per Click (CPC) to go up dramatically as well! Start your budget smaller (about $5 per day) and test it out over the course of a few days to see how it's working for you. Don't like what's happening? Go back and edit the image, text or both until you find the right mix. Happy with the results? Slowly increase your budget (No more that $5 per day) over time to increase the reach without increasing the CPC.

What does online advertising actually do?

As a former advertising sales rep, and current champion of digital for small businesses, I am constantly getting questioned on what online advertising actually does. I consistently hear things like "I put an ad online and didn't get one phone call" or "How do I know if this is really working?"

Since the digital environment entered the advertising playing field, the way marketers and small business owners quantify a return on their investment (ROI) has changed. No longer can you place an ad on a website (or in any other passive medium like radio, TV, print, etc) and expect the phone to start ringing or people to start walking through the door the next day. Consumers are getting smarter about their purchases. They understand the steps to take to see if you really do have the best product available, and will no longer take your word for.

Search engine giants like Google, Bing and Yahoo, review platforms like Yelp, BBB and Angie's List, and social media endorsements from Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest have completely changed the game on how we consume products. We no longer wait to find out about new products through commercials or figure out how they work by visiting the store and asking an associate.  Interested in a new gaming console? Google your different options, visit the maker's website to learn the specifications and features of each console, check out some reviews from other purchasers, and hit up social media to ask your friends their opinions instantly. Then order it directly from the manufacturer to be shipped within the week. You didn't need to leaf through the papers for advertisements or ask the Best Buy associate how they work. 

Does this mean that advertising is useless? Not at all. How would you have known that you wanted to buy a gaming console if there weren't ads reminding you that you wanted one? If all your friends had Playstation, how would you know that Xbox was another option for you to play? Passive display advertising is all about branding a product or service in the minds of the consumer. Is it ultimately going to make their final decision? Probably not. But it reminds them you exist and are there to fill their need when they have it.  That is called branding. Staying relevant and consistent in the mind of the consumer. Keep repeating the word "branding" over and over again when looking at your display ad results!

So how do you make display advertising work for you? Don't just rely on it alone as a singular way to bring in business. Combining more aggressive strategies like social media marketing, blogging, lead generation outlets and referral programs can help you bring together all your efforts on a unified front. Make display advertising a piece of the puzzle, but know that you need to put some time and effort into creating content, getting reviews and promoting your brand on a variety of outlets to really have a strong presence online.

Also, learn to change your expectations of display ad's performance. Instead of focusing on how many clicks you get (National average click-thru rate on banner ads is only .05%!) look at how many impressions your ad is getting. These translate to real life people seeing your brand and the product or service you can offer them. While you may not feel the immediate effects of a sale, these impressions are valuable! They are chances for people to see your name and what you have to offer, who may not have ever heard of you before.

To feel even better about those impressions, find an outlet where you can target your ad by demographics and geographic location. Now you're not just getting people looking at your brand, but people even more likely to purchase from you. Knowing realistically what display advertising can do for you business will help you make better purchasing decisions, and feel better about spending your hard earned dollars.

 

Amy Levesque is a young professional in Rhode Island, digital marketing expert and owner of Hub Digital L.L.C. Hub Digital offers digital marketing services for small to medium size businesses ranging from SEO, social media marketing, blogging and consulting.