Executive Summary: Linkbuilding and SEO for the Internet Marketing Neophyte

first_img Topics: Link Building Links to your website are very important for Internet marketing and getting ranked higher in search engines for keywords related to your business.Benefits of links to your website:1) The right links can drive traffic to your site which can convert into leads.2) Links help search engines find all of the content on your site to index that content.3) The number and quality of links to your site help determine your Page Rank (basically a measure of how important Google thinks your website is) and your Page Rank helps determine your rank for many search terms.Tips on how to get links:1) Submit your site to web directories. Focus on the directories with the best brand and traffic. We have found the Yahoo! Directory and Business.com (both require an annual fee) to be effective, and also try to give the free open directory a shot. You can also try other, smaller and free or lower cost directories, but avoid any that seem really small or just don’t look valuable – remember that the quality of the site linking to you matters. A couple ideas are: www.joeant.com, www.worldhot.com, and www.splut.com.2) Communicate with others in your industry. Search around and find people who have useful sites related to your industry. Don’t start your conversation with “will you link to my website?”, but engage them in a business and intellectual conversation about something they recently wrote. Once you have established a relationship with them, then send them something you have published on your site and ask for their opinion. You’ll be surprised how many will link to your site.3) Create compelling tools and content. We have never promoted Website Grader very much. But because it is a really useful tool that people like, lots of people link to it. In fact, in under 3 months, we already had 800 links, and over 20,000 URLs had been graded on the website. Originally published May 9, 2007 12:36:00 PM, updated March 21 2013 Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlacklast_img read more

The [Marketing] Office: How @HubSpot Learned Twitter

first_img ) Recently, we dug through our vault of old marketing training videos and found this gem. Karen “Angela” Rubin ( Prashant “Oscar” Kaw ( ) Twitter Marketing @repcor The [Marketing] Office: How (“The Office” Spoof) ) @HubSpot ) Learned Twitter Dan “Dwight” Zarrella ( @danzarrella ) )center_img @rickburnes Topics: Ellie “Pam” Mirman ( @ellieeille) @prashantkaw Mike “Michael Scott” Volpe ( @karenrubin Rick “Jim” Burnes ( Credits @mvolpe Dan Tyre (as himself) It may come as a surprise, but HubSpot hasn’t always been fluent in the language of Twitter. It took intensive training sessions led by HubSpot’s social media frontiersman and VP of Inbound Marketing, Michael Scott … I mean, Volpe. Originally published Sep 3, 2009 7:21:00 AM, updated October 20 2016 Director, Producer and Film Editor: Rebecca Corliss ( Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlacklast_img read more

How @garyvee Builds Business Leverage Out of Passion

first_imgIf you’ve seen any  . He works in a family-owned wine store. He knows and loves wine. Gary doesn’t worry about polishing or positioning. He just communicates. Gary Vaynerchuk — How many other people drink their wine with Captain Crunch — or bacon? Gary is a departure from typical wine experts, and that makes him stand out. Today, small and large businesses use essentially the same tools, so businesses must differentiate themselves in the way they use their tools, and that means passion. Charlie King eats, sleeps and breathes golf. Duncan Page runs a business that has been in his family for more than a 100 years. Learn From Gary V Himself 1. He knows his subject  is dominated by the companies with the most creativity and passion. That means small business owners — guys like  Originally published Oct 20, 2009 8:14:00 AM, updated March 21 2013  and  leverage  — can compete with giant corporations, and win. Where, exactly, does this leverage come from? Charlie King HubSpot webinars It’s very popular around here because it captures one of the most important results businesses get from inbound marketing: Topics: 3. He tells a story.center_img inbound marketing 4. He’s a well-rounded inbound marketer. recent Today Show appearance A single theme ties together Gary’s various rants and raves: He’s trying to bring wine to the masses. So how can we learn from Gary’s success? I think four things are most important: . Duncan Page  is another great example of the way passion can change a business. The New Jersey video blogger and wine store owner has used the web and passion to generate over $60 million in revenue. If you’ve never seen Gary speak, this  He’s not just a video blogger. He’s on Twitter. He’s on Facebook. He blogs. And his site is optimized for search engines.  or presentations, chances are you’ve seen the image below. 5. He’s Unique Simple: Passion.  is a good place to start.  If you’d like to hear Gary V explain how he uses passion to create leverage, sign up for the  free webinar he’s offering as part of Inbound University next week. Traditional marketing was dominated by the companies with the biggest wallets;  2. He’s 110% authentic. Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlacklast_img read more

Chart of the Week: Marketing Budgets Shifting to Digital Tactics

first_img Lead Generation Digital channels make up the top 5 tactics in which marketers are investing: 5.       Telemarketing – 22% decrease We also see a trend in moving away from the traditional “push” marketing channels. The top 5 places marketers are looking to cut budgets: Topics: on 14 different marketing tactics. While 46% of companies plan to increase their overall marketing budgets in 2010, 66% will increase their investments in digital marketing. Download the free kit Leaving Traditional Marketing Behind: marketing budgets in 2010 3.       On-site Social Media – 58% 4.       Email (acquisition) – 56% Originally published Mar 10, 2010 5:15:00 AM, updated October 18 2015 more than 265 B2B marketers — in companies of all sizes — asking if they plan to spend more or less of their Marketers are getting smart and going where their buyers are — online.  So where are you going to spend your precious marketing dollars? Pulling buyers to you by Learn how to generate more inbound leads using SEO, blogging, and social media. and draw prospects to you. for tips and tricks to drive more leads and business to your site. 1.       Radio – 50% decrease 2.       Television – 44% decrease 2.       Search Engine Optimization – 64% 3.       Newspapers / magazines – 44% decrease or pushing your message out through traditional channels? surveyed All of these tactics work together to help you . Econsultancy, in association with ExactTarget, Marketers are shifting their budgets away from traditional marketing channels and toward digital marketing channels using inbound marketing Branding Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack 1.       Off-site Social Media – 65% Inbound Lead Generation Kit Inbound Marketing get found 5.       Email (retention) – 53% 4.       Direct Mail – 30% decreaselast_img read more

Top 6 Reasons You Should Fire Your Website Designer

first_img Topics: As a marketing consultant, I see the design of a website being overly prioritized, while the marketing and sales teams miss out on valuable leads. It’s a frustrating experience for everyone involved. So here are the top six reasons that you should fire (or at least, have a good talking-to) to your website designer or developer:1. Your Website Is Being Held Hostage During a RedesignOftentimes during a website redesign, your webmaster or web designer will take your website “hostage,” meaning that you cannot make any updates to the current site OR new site until the new site launches. Since website redesigns can take months, it can be months until you can optimize your website for SEO and lead generation.Do you really want your website to remain dormant for months? Leads are qualified prospects, so you could me missing out on months-worth of customers, just because your designer is being possessive of your site during a redesign. Just think of how much cash you’re losing out on. At the very least, you should be able to add a few call to action buttons to your homepage and other website pages, leading to simple landing pages that include a form so people can exchange their contact info for whatever you’re offering. If you can’t make those simple updates, it’s time to start looking for a new developer.2. Your Website Is Being Held Hostage ALL THE TIMEI’ve seen it happen where someone’s website is held hostage not only during a website redesign, but all the time. Every little button, tweaked paragraph, or new page of content needs to be added by the designer/developer, and this can often be a time consuming and expensive process.If you have to pay and wait for every little tweak you make to your site, or every time you want to switch in a new call-to-action (CTA) button, you should think about finding a new web developer (or switching agencies if you’re outsourcing).3. You’re Not Being Allocated Any Space For Calls-to-ActionDuring a website redesign, your designer will be focused on the aesthetic details of your site. He may be giving you a hard time when it comes to reserving some space for you on the homepage (above the fold) for a couple CTAs. When this happens, it’s important for you to remember that the true goal of your site is to generate leads. Without having CTAs on your homepage and other website pages that lead to landing pages with compelling offers, you will not easily be able to get leads.Your designer might not only give you a hard time about the space, but he may insist on designing the CTAs himself, adding another step between you and getting leads, or optimizing your conversion paths. Be firm and make sure that his highest priority should be to create a website that effectively generates leads. If he can’t agree, he should be out the door.4. Images Are Where Text Should BeIf images are being used in the place of header (H1, H2, H3, etc.) or your navigation, that should be a big warning sign that your designer is not taking your search engine optimization efforts into consideration. It is important that the header of your page uses the HTML tags

, and I’ve heard web designers argue till they’re blue in the face that having an image for the text in that place looks better. Remember, your website exists so that people can FIND your content and become LEADS. Your website visitors don’t care if the header text is a shade of red that isn’t of a standard web HEX code, and neither should you.5. The Color Scheme Is Being Prioritized Over Site StructureIn addition to including search engine optimized content, your website should be very easy to navigate, and your content should be logically organized. Do not let your designer sacrifice usability in favor of a more “sophisticated” look. Confused users lead to abandonment and high bounce rates, rather than leads.6. Your Site Is Being Converted to a Flash SiteAlthough Google’s ability to crawl Flash has improved over the years, Flash is not as effective at search engine optimization as an HTML site. Flash should be used sparingly, since you want to search engines to be able to crawl and index your website pages based on that remarkable content you’ve been working so hard to create. In addition to limiting your SEO benefits, Flash can make it difficult for your site visitors to navigate your site.If your website designer doesn’t do any of the above, then you’ve found a keeper! But if so, you should recognize how much they’re hurting your business by preventing you from getting traffic and leads. What frustrates you most about a website redesign process? Let me know in the comments below! Diana Urban  is a User Experience Manager at HubSpot. You can follow her on Twitter  @dianaurban . Free Website Redesign Kit Website Design Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlackcenter_img Originally published Feb 10, 2011 1:00:00 PM, updated February 01 2017 Learn how to redesign your website for marketing results Download the free kit to learn how to turn your website into an internet marketing machine.last_img read more

How to Benefit from Facebook’s 2011 Updates

first_img Who’s Blogging What , LunaMetrics . , Mark Spangler , How do I go about Facebook ads? I’m new to Facebook marketing. Where do I start? Rank highly for recent and top news. Strive for a lot of activity by encouraging interaction. Get a lot of content out there and always have a way the user can contribute,whether by answering a question or posting a photo. Set up a Facebook fan or place page and start it with a landing and info page. Clearly define your audience so that you can appropriately create content and build an editorial library.  Leverage content they will find both relevant and interesting, and share it in a very simple way while engaging them. Stuzo I Dachis Group Make it a place page if you have a physical location where people can check in; it can be mapped with an address. You could also post events and deals. For example, a concert venue needs a place page, yet a fan page would be appropriate for a musical artist. HubSpot Director of Client Services You don’t need to be HTML-savvy when creating welcome pages. Do some research, as there are some great apps out there. A lot of free mechanisms require no technology skills. And to control tracking and metrics, learn to understand Facebook insights- it is who’s viewing what. It will help you audit what you’ve been doing. Brian Honigman the webinar for the full scoop, but in the meantime, look over some of the top general questions: , an inbound marketing manager at How does a visitor convert into a customer? Part two of How to Benefit from Facebook 2011 Updates answered some great questions from webinar attendees. The Q&A –based session considered the knowledge of Shoedazzle Starbucks What makes a place page different than a fan page? A few other takeaways?center_img , Who’s doing it right? Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack You first need to look over Facebook’s promotion guidelines and clearly define what you’re looking for before you start it. Then decide how you’re going to develop it and plan to give away appealing prizes. Keep everything timely, creative and as simple as possible. Also don’t forget to promote on all of the other marketing channels you use. featuring some of the best fan pages.­­ , and What does a successful Facebook contest/competition setup look like? Director Facebook Marketing AT&T Topics: Effective ads are engaging, and the images are important. Make sure the ads are very targeted with keywords, yet creative and fun. To consistently engage a visitor enough, come up with ways to incorporate events, notes and polls into your marketing. Posting, commenting, liking, and watching are all driven engagement. You can use the advancement of the like button to drive traffic to your status and link posts. Use events to power traffic back to your blogs. The questions feature is like a poll; it creates awareness. Maggie Georgieva Search Analyst list judges and ranks themselves on speed while harvesting their content to consumers. Mashable also has a … Originally published May 12, 2011 9:40:00 AM, updated October 20 2016 View Dunkin’ Donuts Jeff Ente How do you get content to be seen on Facebook?last_img read more

How To Draw Attention with Press and Guests

first_img , and has welcomed guests including Muhammad Ali and Adam Sandler onto his own show. In his How to Get Press Press coverage can be anything from a printed feature to attention on TV. Especially when you’re up-and-coming, it is important to get visibility. How to make it? As you meet other people, it becomes easier to obtain contact information. Develop relationships with people who make it easier to access other people. A hookup with promotion, both online and mainstream How to Get Awesome Guests interview with David Garland, Graham shares tips and tricks from his own experience. Be persistent. started an Internet radio show when he was in eighth grade, and now at age 24, has been on a number of late-night talk shows including Graham Bensinger How to Make Direct Contacts Rise to the Top Topics: Depending on your industry, make a list of the best publications and media sources that can potentially help you.center_img Send an email pitching yourself. Originally published Jul 14, 2011 8:00:00 PM, updated October 20 2016 Graham does, however, suggest the letter-writing method. He says that in some cases, a letter in the mail may be more effective than email. It is just a matter of figuring out the right address to reach the person. Create resourceful diversity with a cool guest to star on your show, interview for your blog or speak for your business. It is easy to submit a request for someone, but it is more straining to figure out exactly the right person to send the request through. It’s a bit easier once you’re recognized, but in the meantime… Make direct contact by eliminating the middle person (manager, booking agent, etc.). Get to an event your desired person will be attending. It takes confidence to pitch yourself in front of an A-list individual. If you have that confidence, nobody can stop you. Take the chance to sell yourself. Host great guests Search reporters and producers. Leno Persistence is always a work in progress and you never know when it will pay off. But don’t give up; just keep in mind that press leads to more press. Do all you can in your power to get in front of the person you’re trying to catch. To stand face-to-face with the actual person and pitch an interview pays dividends. This is always a challenge at first, but as your audience grows, the process gets easier. Take that as inspiration. Public Relations Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlacklast_img read more

Should You Add “Please Retweet” to Your Twitter Updates? [Debate]

first_img ? Twitter updates , disagrees. “It’s desperate,” says David Meerman Scott, marketing strategist and bestselling author, about adding “Please Retweet” to your Twitter updates. However, Dan Zarrella, HubSpot’s social media scientist and host of the upcoming Topics: Being outspoken about the action you want your Twitter followers to take should be aligned with your marketing goals. “Marketing is essentially manipulation. It’s getting people to do what you want,” Dan says. “If you are a salesperson, you ask for a credit card number. If you are doing Twitter Engagement Yes, Says Dan Zarrella In fact, Social Media Is About Personal Decisions Science of Social Media webinar , David points out, is a type of ecosystem that encourages people to pick and choose their information intake. As opposed to mass media, in which a certain message is being broadcast to you, social media allows for more personal freedom. “I think the currency of social media is one of ‘ It’s Backed Up by Data do Me get more retweets. It’s the 11th most retweetable phrasing that Dan has identified. To settle this argument and pick a winner, we conducted a brief debate and recorded it for our community to enjoy. Should you add “Please Retweet” to your It’s a Remindercenter_img shows that tweets that include this call-to-action , you ask for someone to fill out a lead form.” Therefore, it’s only natural to ask for retweets in your social media marketing. Dan’s research Let Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack I No, Says David Meerman Scott lead generation want to do things.'” David finds this phrasing desperate because it undermines people’s ability to judge for themselves what’s valuable enough to be rweteeted. “If your content is good, I will retweet it,” says David. In other words, you should trust your Twitter followers to make the right decision. Judge What’s Valuable So what do you think? Who would you side with? Add to the “Please Retweet” debate in the comments below! Originally published Aug 12, 2011 1:02:00 PM, updated October 20 2016 One reason why this wording works as a call-to-action, Dan Zarrella says, is because less savvy Twitter users often forget that retweeting is an option. So this serves as a reminder for them. Social media It Has Marketing Valuelast_img read more

An Introduction to Link Building: Understanding the Anatomy of a Link

first_img Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack I recently gave a presentation on link building at the HubSpot User Group Summit (HUGS) with HubSpot customer Tom Telford of Cedar Creek Cabin Rentals. For those who were not able to attend, here’s a rundown of three important factors to keep in mind when doing targeted link building.Access 4 Essential Link-Building TipsA Quick Note About Content CreationAt the end of the day, link building is about content creation. If you don’t have content worth sharing, you won’t get link love. Even with the best link building campaign in place, the lion’s share of your links should come from people freely linking to your content. If you’re a regular reader of the HubSpot blog, what I’m about to say next shouldn’t shock you: Use a blog on your website to write about your industry. The content you create will get found and will get linked to. Understanding the Anatomy of a LinkThere are three things you need to think about:1) Anchor Text: This this the textual representation of your hyperlink. For example the anchor text for this link is “this link,” and the hyperlink is “http://www.hubspot.com.” Anchor text is important because most major search engines use it to determine what keywords are relevant to a page. For example, if you want to rank for the term “Orange Widgets,” then you should try to get as many links as you can with “Orange Widgets” as the anchor text. 2) Authority of the Linking Domain:Inbound links are important to SEO because they are a signal to search engines that you Web site or Web pages are important. Simple put, the more inbound links you have, the more authority you get. Furthermore, the more authority you have, the better your chances are of ranking for a given keyword.That said, all links are not created equal. If you were to get an inbound link from a domain with lots of it’s own inbound links, like the New York Times for example, you would get more authority transfered to your domain, then if you got a link from my friend Brian’s blog. Your goal should be to get links from high authority domains.When researching link building opportunities, always check the authority of the websites that you are trying to get links from. There are many tools online that allow you to check domain or page authority, including HubSpot’s link grader tool.3) The Page on Your Website that is Getting the Links:As I mentioned at the beginning of this post, most of the inbound links your site will receive in it’s lifetime will come naturally from people linking to your remarkable content. Those links will help improve the authority of your domain as a whole, but are often very general and do not contain keyword-rich anchor text, or point to meaningful pages.The goal of targeted link building is to improve your rank for a keyword phrase or to improve the rank of a particular page on your site.Think carefully about what pages you want linked to. For example, if you currently have a page on your site that is ranking number 22 on Google for the term “Orange Widgets.” Your goal should be to generate more links to that page, hopefully containing relevant anchor text.As links to that specific page grow, it should climb up in position in search engines. Topics: Link Building Originally published Sep 28, 2011 10:09:00 AM, updated July 28 2017last_img read more

The 4 Secrets of Effective Prospect Nurturing

first_img Originally published Sep 30, 2011 3:00:00 PM, updated February 01 2017 This is a guest blog post by Mari Anne Vanella, one of the 20 Women to Watch in Lead Management in 2011. Mari was one of our guest presenters on the Marketing Metrics Workshop, “The Follow Up Formula: Secrets for Nurturing Prospects.”Let’s start off with a simple vocabulary word.nur·ture /ˈnɜrtʃər/  Show Spelled [nur-cher]  Show IPA verb, -tured, -tur·ing,  noun  verb (used with object) 1. to feed and protect: to nurture one’s offspring. 2. to support and encourage, as during the period of training or development; foster: to nurture promising musicians. 3. to bring up; train; educate. Lead generation has more and more moved away from a transactional activity, or generating single events for reps, to initiating and maintaining a relationship that leads the buyer to the best choice (i.e., your platform).The definition for nurturing, highlighted above, is exactly the effect you want your ongoing follow-up and communication to accomplish. Something that is often overlooked, however, is that the relationship with your prospects won’t become reciprocal until they see the value and visualize the benefit. Often buyers educate themselves, interact with users of your product, and compare solutions before they even take your calls. That being said, sending generic content and pestering phone calls to move them along will actually drive them away vs. drawing them closer.  So, what’s the secret to an effective follow up?PersistenceValuePersonal, Peer-Level InteractionTiming 1. PersistencePersistence is important when dealing with today’s overloaded executives. Don’t give up after a single follow up. I’ve heard sales reps express discouragement over prospects not returning their calls or emails, but the underlying problem is that executives are just plain busy. It often takes 3-5+ attempts to reach a prospect who showed interest via a webinar, whitepaper, or other inbound activity. Waiting for them to call you back will only let their interest go cold and leave room for someone else to capture the attention you invested in developing. The other aspect to this is that companies are passive to reach out to vendors even when there is a requirement. Just because they aren’t calling you back doesn’t mean there isn’t a huge opportunity within a company. Don’t misinterpret their lack of response always as a lack of interest.2. ValueCreate value with your outreach, but don’t over-inform. Sending content-heavy communication risks losing your prospects. The first time they read something they don’t understand, it will distance them and make them think you aren’t a good fit, and that’s a hard ditch to dig out of when you have no insight into what happened. Reps often wonder why prospects went quiet on them. This is one of the reasons: too much data right out of the gate without knowing what they needed to hear. You want your prospects to say “tell me more,” not “please stop talking.”    3. Personal, Peer-Level InteractionPersonal and peer level interaction is different than a sales-to-prospect dynamic. Peer level communication is open, free-flowing discussion that lets the prospect talk. It’s not telling them what they’re doing wrong by not working with you. Your nurturing program should be a deliberate effort to break down barriers with your prospects, inform them, and also build a personal relationship with them. The human aspect of this is important because it is the richest form of communication at your disposal. Interacting with your prospects at a higher level will reinforce and advance the opportunity. We talk to hundreds of executives each week, and people take calls and are more than willing to engage—as I have said many times, it isn’t that people don’t want to take a call; they just don’t want to take a bad call. So educate your team and outsource a little bit, but do something to connect live with prospects on their level. 4. TimingFinally, timing is extremely critical in your follow up. Plan your outreach in the right window. I have seen organizations push follow ups on good leads months out, long after the prospect has forgotten the original exchange they had and are well along with evaluating (and now preferring) other vendors. If you uncovered an opportunity and you know their buying cycle, stay ahead of it. Don’t wait until the deal is on the table to get involved. Well planned outreach will keep you informed of what is going on. Long gone are the days of sales 1.0, when sales teams followed up on a lead, found out the deal wasn’t happening for 2 quarters out, and then called back in 2 quarters to find out they signed a 1M deal with a competitor 2 months back. The tools are now available to stage the timing, and if the prospect is active before then and you have visibility of that, don’t wait until their score reaches a certain threshold; call them. Don’t lose deals when you have visibility at your fingertips. Buyers are open to early engagement, and this is often when the real window of influence is possible and decisions are made. So, with your prospects, take the approaches that align with your buyers’ actual decision patterns.   Final ThoughtNurturing programs can take on different forms, from simple campaigns to sophisticated ones within automation platforms. The key here is to do something that keeps you involved and progresses the opportunity. Don’t lose the prospect that you invested so much to identify in the first place. A sizable amount of marketing dollars go into activities to generate interested prospects. To let them fall off a cliff once you’ve discovered they aren’t buying in the next 90 days is walking away from a huge percentage of prospects that will in fact make a purchase in the next 12 months.  It’s important to realize you are already holistically building your pipeline, and small adjustments to how you are following up makes a big difference to extract more revenue out of your initial campaigns. Nurturing has become a cooperative effort of sales and marketing. The 4 points I talked about in this post overlap both. We’re all on the same team with the common goal of staying involved and progressing deals in the most effective manner. Identifying the areas that need change, who will drive it, and achieving consistency across both groups will only result in increased success.What other prospect nurturing secrets are you keeping in your internet marketing back pocket?Image credit: Looking&Learning Topics: Passing Leads to Sales Don’t forget to share this post! 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The Ultimate Cheat Sheet for Awesome Marketing Emails

first_img Email Marketing Originally published Oct 13, 2011 5:00:00 PM, updated October 30 2019 Topics: Email marketing can be a very powerful lever for lead generation within your arsenal of inbound marketing tools. While I think most of us can agree that email is still alive and thriving, there are still many marketers that struggle to leverage it effectively for lead gen. So, why not break it down?In this post, we’ll carefully dissect the anatomy of an effective, optimized marketing email. Let’s take a look at one of HubSpot’s recent email sends as an example…13-Part Anatomy of an Effective Marketing Email1. A Clear, Concise, and Attention-Grabbing Subject Line: Before your email subscribers even read your email, the first thing they’ll see if the email’s subject line. Likely, your email is sitting in your prospects’ inboxes alongside a ton of other emails, many of which will be from other vendors and companies just like you. Therefore, it’s very important that you make it stand out with clear, eye-catching subject line. Keep it brief, but use your space wisely, and try to describe the offer you’re giving them within the email as clearly and concisely as possible. Avoid trigger words that can easily land you in senders’ SPAM box.2. A Real, Live, Human Sender: In communication between real people, the “From” address is someone’s name. Experiment with how you customize your email’s sender name, and consider making it come from a real, living, breathing member of your marketing team to make your email messages more personal. Try a test to determine which format of your sender name contributes to the best open rate (e.g. First Name Last Name vs. First Name Last Name, Company Name vs. Company Name).3. Obvious Branding Elements: There shouldn’t be any question to your subscribers about where your email is coming from. Create and utilize an email template with consisting branding elements. Include your logo! Use your company’s branding colors. Omitting branding elements suggests a lack of professionalism and security.4. Personalization: While research shows that one third of marketers believe that personalized marketing campaigns are highly effective, the majority of marketers aren’t including any personalization elements in their campaigns. Email marketing (especially lead nurturing) offers a great opportunity to leverage the power of personalization. You can use data about your database to segment them into groups and send them more personalized content offers based on their behavior and wants/needs. At the very least, use your data to personalize the greeting in your email. Furthermore, as we mentioned earlier, make your email come from a real person within your organization. Consider including their picture and signing off the email with their nickname.5. Offer Context: Before you give your email recipients the opportunity to access your offer, set the stage for why what you’re offering is valuable to them. Keep it brief, use compelling language, and consider incorporating statistics to emphasize importance. Add a link or two for your offer within this section, too.6. Obvious & Focused Call-to-Action (CTA): Include a prominent CTA for your offer. Make your CTA’s text specific about what action the reader must take to receive the offer (in this example, “Download”) and create a sense of urgency (e.g. “Now,” “Today,” etc.). Avoid vague language like “Submit,” and try to tie the CTA to the offer itself (e.g. for a live webinar, you must say “Register For the Webinar Now” or “Reserve Your Seat Today”).7. Explanation/Value of Offer: Clearly highlight what email recipients will get out of downloading your ebook or registering for your webinar. Use bullet points to break up the text and emphasize key takeaways. Demonstrate the value of the offer.8. Social Sharing Buttons/Links: Include social sharing links on every email you send to further expand the reach of your email content. If readers find the content within your email valuable and feel compelled to share it with their social media connections, now they can easily do so! This will help you reach a wider range of potential leads with very little effort.9. Image: Break up text with a professional-looking image. Try matching this image with the content of your offer. So, if you’re offering an ebook, include a picture of the cover page. If you’re offering a webinar, include a screenshot of the cover slide in your presentation.10. Additional Product-Based Offer: Maybe some of your email subscribers are ready for a more product-focused offer like a free trial of your product or a personal consultation. Use the real estate in your P.S. as an opportunity to tie your main content offer to a more middle-of-the funnel offer.11. Social Media Follow Buttons/Links: Grow your social media reach by giving recipients opportunities to subscribe to your updates in social media, too. Add social media follow buttons to encourage subscribers to follow you on Twitter, ‘Like’ your Facebook page, subscribe to your YouTube channel, or follow your company updates on LinkedIn.12. Link to Privacy Policy: As the web evolved into an even more social and public platform, concerns about privacy continue to get raised. Give your email subscribers peace of mind and a sense of security by including a link to your company’s privacy policy.13. Unsubscribe Link: ALWAYS include an unsubscribe link at the bottom of your email marketing messages. Neglecting to do so will put you in violation of CAN-SPAM regulations, cost you quite a bit of your valuable marketing budget, and severely damage your company’s credibility.How do your email marketing messages stand today? Are they missing any of these critical elements for success? Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlacklast_img read more

9 Ways to Increase Visibility for Your Best Blog Content

first_img Topics: Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack Growing Readership As an inbound marketer, you spend so much time writing amazing blog content — you conceive an engaging topic , research the subject matter, pour your heart and soul into writing the post, and beam as you hit the publish button for all the world to see.And then after a day or two, in the immortal words of Jay-Z, it’s “on to the next.”So what happens to that awesome blog post you published a few days ago once the next one comes along? For most people, it just kind of … disappears into the ether, getting buried by newer posts and disappearing from your blog’s homepage. What a shame.But it doesn’t have to be that way! There are plenty of ways to resurface your best blog content so it gets more visibility than just a day or two on your blog’s homepage. We know how much time and effort it takes to create content, so why not squeeze the most ROI out of your business blogging with these ideas to resurface your blog content? 1) Recommend Blog Posts About Similar Topics If your reader was interested enough to click through to your blog post on, say, paid search for mobile (like I was on Search Engine Land’s recent blog post on the subject), it stands to reason that your reader might like to read the other content you’ve written on the subject. That’s why it’s a great idea to include links to related blog posts you’ve written on the subject in the bottom of your blog posts, as Search Engine Land has done on its site.You’ll notice they not only include links to the titles of blog posts that relate to mobile marketing and search engine strategy, but they also link to their blog topic tags on paid search marketing, mobile marketing, and search marketing for those who might like to browse the entirety of their blog archives. You can make this related content module a feature of your blog design, or simply include it in plain text at the bottom of each blog post you write. 2) Republish Successful Blog Posts in Social Media You may already use social media to achieve visibility for your blog posts when you first publish them — so why not continue to promote them via your social media accounts well after their initial publish date, too? This is easy to do with automated social media publishing tools; if you’re a HubSpot customer, you can make use of our social publishing tool that lets you schedule posts across all your social media accounts for pre-defined dates and times in the future.Dive into your blog analytics , and sort your posts based on page view count and inbound links — this is an indication of which blog posts have been the most popular. Then begin incorporating one of those popular posts into your social media status updates every day. Not only does this help regenerate traffic to the best blog posts for new followers that you’ve acquired since you originally published the post, but it also provides much needed social media content fodder.And don’t worry that your followers will get frustrated about seeing duplicate content. Social media moves at the speed of light ( StatCounter reports that the half-life of a Facebook update is 3.2 hours, while a tweet is only 2.8 hours ), and if your content is truly valuable, there’s nothing wrong with promoting it again. Just be sure to draft new copy for the status update — that should never be repurposed! 3) Use Your Blog Posts as a Lead-Gen Offer In a recent blog post about how to quickly create a lead-gen offer , we recommended creating a “blog bundle,” or a compilation of your best blog posts on a particular subject. This tactic can be used for a quick lead generation offer and to gain more visibility for your best blog posts. Don’t you just love repurposed content?To get the most visibility for your blog posts using this method, include links throughout the offer that lead back to other blog posts. For example, if I were to create a blog bundle about SEO, it’s possible I’d talk tangentially about paid search. While it wouldn’t be relevant to go in-depth on paid search in a piece of content focused on SEO, it would be helpful to reference and link to other paid search blog posts within the blog bundle offer. You might say, “To learn more about how paid search can help your organic search strategy, read this blog post about integrating a paid and organic strategy,” with a link back to that blog post.This strategy not only lets you leverage your best blog content as a lead generation offer while simultaneously getting more eyes on those blog posts, but it also gives you ample opportunity to drive visitors back to your blog through relevant internal linking opportunities . 4) Grow Inbound and Internal Links for More Search Engine Visibility The linking opportunities don’t end with your lead generation offers; it’s crucial to grow your inbound and internal links within blog posts to increase blog post visibility in search engines.Think about how users find your blog — it’s not just through email alerts to subscribers and social media links. If you’re optimizing your content, you’ll get found in search engines for years to come! Increase that visibility by naturally acquiring inbound links for your most important blog posts — through guest blogging opportunities, polite requests to industry connections, and graciously linking to other people’s content. Then bolster the impact of those internal links by implementing a savvy internal linking strategy to help bolster organic visibility of important blog posts even further. If you’re curious how to implement an internal linking strategy that will help your SEO, read our blog post that explains its importance and how to get started .Aside from the SEO value you’ll get from internal linking, continually referencing your old blog content within the context of new blog posts helps you continually drive new traffic to them. We make use of this tactic all the time in our blog posts (see the internal linking examples in the previous paragraph); instead of explaining a concept in its entirety in a blog post, we link to a past post that goes into far more detail. Not only is this more useful for the reader — we don’t derail the subject of the blog post to explain a tangential concept — but it also helps us to drive more traffic to blog posts that have long since been archived. 5) Update & Republish Old Blog Posts You now know — from your social media republishing research in tip #2 — which blog posts were the most successful. But are they all still up-to-date? If your best blog posts are months or years old, it’s possible the information contained therein is outdated — especially if you work in a fast-changing industry. So why not save yourself the time of writing a new post from scratch and get more leverage out of those evergreen blog posts by updating the content and republishing it to your blog? We did this with Mike Volpe’s outdated blog post about creating a leads waterfall graph , seen below.The new version of the blog post offered an updated graph, more explanation to accompany the original video that was embedded in the post, and highlighted new product functionality that helps marketers keep track of lead generation progress that was not available when the post was originally published.When updating and republishing blog content, rather than creating a new draft, just change the date from the original publish date to the current one so readers don’t think they’ve stumbled across outdated content and so you aren’t publishing what search engines consider duplicate content. Share the new post in social media, and if your blog comments automatically turn off after a certain timeframe, enable new comments again since you’ll be getting new traffic to the blog post. 6) Recommend the Most Popular Blog Posts  You’re getting new, unique traffic to your blog every day. Don’t you think those new visitors would like to read some of your blog’s oldies but goodies? Make use of one of the simplest ways to resurface old blog content — a blog post recommendation widget. These modules can be built into your blog’s design, and automatically recommend the blog posts that were the most popular. Just be sure you’re vigilant about updating old but popular blog content (refer to tip #5) so you don’t drive visitors to pages with incorrect or outdated information! 7) Use Blog Content in Email Marketing Campaigns One of the most common reasons marketers fail at lead nurturing is a lack of suitable content. Use your blog to simultaneously feed your lead nurturing content arsenal and generate more visibility for past blog posts. We’re not talking emailing subscribers about a new blog post getting published — that’s not targeted lead nurturing. Rather, pick your best, most comprehensive blog posts that address your prospects’ pain points, and include them in your lead nurturing content map . For example, a prospect in the top of your sales funnel that has viewed a lot of HubSpot’s past Facebook content might be interested to receive our post about the most inspiring Facebook brand page designs . Just be sure to include calls-to-action in all of your posts so traffic that converts from the email can reconvert on the blog!You don’t need to be utilizing advanced lead nurturing tools to leverage your blog content in emails, though. Give your sales team an arsenal of evergreen, educational posts that address common pain points they hear when speaking to prospects. When they uncover a serious pain point, they’re equipped to verbally explain the solution and send a personalized email with a link to the blog post that explains the solution in more detail. 8) Include Blog Posts in Your Resource Center We’ve written before on this blog about a resource center as an important place on your website to update content. But it can be daunting to continually come up with new content to include there — and you want to update your site as much as possible for optimal search engine optimization, right? Kill two birds with one stone, and highlight your best blog posts in your resource center. We advise against including the entirety of your blog content in your resource center, since search engines might ding you for duplicate content. Instead,   write an original abstract that explains what the post is about,   and direct the reader to the full post on your blog. 9) Reference Your Blog Content in Q&A Forums Just as your how-to and explanatory blog posts are useful content for your sales organization, they can be repurposed on Q&A forums and social networks like Quora or LinkedIn Answers where users crowdsource answers to industry questions. For example, yesterday on Focus , my colleague Meghan Keaney Anderson came across the question, “What is a content map?” Here’s what she did instead of explaining the relatively complex concept from scratch:That’s right — she linked to a blog post that answers the question. Now that post will receive visibility in front of a brand new audience! When using this tactic, however, be sure the post you’re offering is truly helpful in answering a user’s question to prevent gaining a reputation as a comment spammer. What do you do to resurface your blog content for maximum visibility? Image credit: Sterlic Originally published Mar 27, 2012 1:01:00 PM, updated February 01 2017last_img read more

Facebook Now Testing Offer ‘Coupons’ for Ecommerce Sites, Too!

first_imgLast week, we wrote about some pretty cool news from Facebook — it’s testing coupons called ‘Offers’ for brick-and-mortar stores, helping local businesses better associate ROI with their Facebook marketing efforts. But we were left a little bummed, thinking that there were a few untapped markets with just this local, brick-and-mortar business focus.Luckily, TechCrunch discovered that Facebook is also testing this coupon functionality with one more important segment … ecommerce sites! That’s right, it looks like ecommerce businesses will soon be able to feature coupons prominently within users’ news feeds, in ads, and in Sponsored Stories that encourage users to click through and complete purchases in their web stores.Frankly, ecommerce businesses seem like the most logical segment to leverage this new ‘Offer’ functionality, so it’s a bit of a shock Facebook didn’t begin their coupon testing with them. But, they’re testing it now, so instead of pontificating about their rollout logic, let’s just break down exactly what we do know about these Facebook ecommerce Offers.What is Facebook Offers for Ecommerce?First, let’s start by clarifying that Facebook Offers for ecommerce is only in the test phase right now, so it’s not available for all ecommerce businesses. Facebook is working with clients like Fox Shops, Walmart, and Lady Gaga’s web store to test this new functionality, after which Facebook can roll this out to a self-serve interface similar to the brick-and-mortar Facebook Offers that became available last week. The timetable for a full-fledged launch, however, has not been announced. But when Macy’s rolled out the very first Facebook Offer last month with a 25% off discount for purchases over $100, more than 41,000 claimed the coupon, according to Practical eCommerce.When it does roll out, ecommerce companies and businesses with online stores will be able to create coupons that can be redeemed by customers online. You could either create a promotion code to use on your website, or simply use a link that lets you click through for a discount on purchases. These coupons can appear in the Facebook news feed, in ads, and in Sponsored Stories. They’re totally free to run on their own, but you can also pay for ads and Sponsored Stories to have Facebook run your offer more frequently to increase visibility. But more on that later!The offers are easy to set up; just like the brick-and-mortar offer setup, you simply click “Offer” from the space at the top of your Timeline where you typically go to share content, enter your offer headline — in the Macy’s example above, it was “Get 25% off your purchase of $100 or more. Save BIG on the latest trends!” — set the expiration date for the promo, include any terms and conditions if necessary, and upload an image. Voila! You have your first ecommerce Facebook coupon!Why Facebook Offers for Ecommerce Is CoolTo explain why this is so cool, let’s take a look at a few examples from brands involved in the beta test. Last month, Kate Spade ran an offer for 25% off purchases online and in-store. This is a screenshot, courtesy of TechCrunch, that shows what a user receives on Facebook and in their email inbox after claiming the offer.First, notice the instructions included in the copy at the top of the screenshot, called out in orange. That’s right — if you run both a brick-and-mortar location and a web store, you can leverage this functionality just the same! Just include instructions for how to redeem your offer in-person like Kate Spade did above, and be sure to train your employees on how the coupon can be redeemed — by printing the coupon out from your email, or showing this confirmation from your mobile phone.And if you don’t have a physical location, your life is even easier; no staff training necessary! Just adjust your website to accept the new coupon code you’ve set up. You can either generate a unique code for each user so the offer is exclusive, or you can try to leverage your fans’ reach, create a generic coupon code, and ask fans to share the offer so it spreads to all Facebook users. That’s what you see at the bottom of the Kate Spade offer confirmation above, called out in orange — they’re leveraging reach instead of exclusivity with this particular coupon to get as many eyes on it as possible!This new testing is exciting for one more reason — it’s also a lead generation mechanism! People who wanted to claim this Kate Spade offer could either provide their email address in order to receive the coupon above, or, if they were on their way to the Kate Spade site to make a purchase immediately, could click the URL that appeared in the offer to have the discount apply to their shopping cart. So while you don’t have to make an email address a requirement when you run your own offers, if you’re trying to grow your email list, Facebook Offers is giving you a new way to do it using social media.How Much Does This All Cost?Like I mentioned before, Facebook Offers for ecommerce doesn’t have to cost anything. You can, however, pay to promote your offers so they get more visibility like Sears did below.Sears paid to have its coupon appear in Sponsored Stories, so it shows up to the friends of Facebook users who claimed this offer. This could show up either on the Facebook side bar, or within users’ news feeds. For either scenario, you can leverage Facebook’s ad targeting to further refine who will see your coupon. (Tip: You don’t have to use a coupon code to use Facebook Offers for ecommerce. Like Sears did here, you can simply create a link that offers a certain amount off a purchase.)As Facebook’s IPO approaches, the push to monetize is offering more options for businesses — first brick-and-mortar, now ecommerce, next … who knows? But when Facebook Offers for ecommerce rolls out to all, you can look forward to a better connection between your Facebook activities and actual dollars and cents. In other words, those fluffy social media metrics like engagement, reach, and shares will actually start to mean something to your brand’s bottom line.Do you think Facebook Offers is a good idea for ecommerce businesses?Image credit: Lomo-Cam Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack E-Commerce Websites Originally published May 9, 2012 4:30:00 PM, updated February 01 2017 Topics:last_img read more

12 Simple Ways Marketers Can Humanize Their Brand

first_imgCompanies are not people.Boom. How’s that for a controversial opening line?For the sake of harmony (and the point of this blog post), let’s try to remove the political implications from that statement, and consider what it means for us as marketers.How would most people describe their relationship with your company? Is it purely transactional, making you just a place they go to get something they need? Or do you elicit more personal feelings from your leads and customers? In an inbound marketing age where businesses are expected to get to know their target audience, develop personas, maintain an active social media presence, and be genuinely helpful to their leads and customers, it seems like there’s room to develop a relationship between companies and consumers beyond just the transactional.The fact is, people do business with people they like and trust, and it’s really, really hard to trust a company. But you know when it’s way easier to trust a company? When your audience is reminded there are real life humans working behind the scenes … and maybe they can even get to know them a bit. So if your company comes off as cold, corporate, or faceless, it might be time to find a way to humanize your brand a little more. Here’s how.1) Write an ‘About Us’ page that’s actually good.The ‘About Us’ page is one of the most frequently flubbed up pages on the internet. Which is a bummer, really, because what better way to humanize your brand than a page dedicated to telling people about who you are?So, who do you want to be? A faceless corporation? Or do you want to tell people about what you do, who you are, and why you think it might be interesting to them? I went looking for an example to show off here that’s an extraordinary example of someone humanizing their company through their ‘About Us’ page, and thanks to Blog Tyrant, I found two examples for you.First, I recommend you check out SEOmoz. Their page includes several sections that explain what they do and why they’re valuable, as well as a timeline that explains how their company came to be — written in a light-hearted yet professional way. Giving the backstory of how the company was founded gives readers insight into the founders’ motivations, and also presents it in a way that shows the reader what value SEOmoz brings to the table for their customers.The other example of a killer ‘About Us’ Page I highly recommend is Andrew Reifman of Andrew Reifman Graphic Design. This page is notable because of its simplicity. Who he is, what he does, and the value he brings is all clear in just a few words. Plus you actually feel like you know the guy when you’re done reading it! That makes it far easier for leads to determine whether he’s someone they want to do business with, and you can bet the ones with whom this page resonates are going to be extremely eager leads. Uber has been so effective at humanizing ita that when my co-worker had a question about Uber this morning, I actually told her to tweet at Nick. Not Uber. Nick. Because when I use social media to get Uber customer support, I’ve always talked to a person — Nick, specifically, — as opposed to who-on-earth-knows at most other companies.6) Sign your social updates.If you don’t have just one dedicated community manager, it may seem unwieldy to introduce the entire team — this is a common problem faced by enterprise organizations. Consider signing your social media updates if you’re one of many posting to a social account, particularly if you’re using it for customer support. Take a look at how Verizon support does it on their Twitter account: Branding This helps remind people that even though they can’t hear your voice, there’s one real, live, breathing person that’s dedicated to helping them.7) Have conversations with fans, followers, and commenters.But make sure they aren’t all just about your company or industry — although those are important, too. When you venture outside of your usual topics once in a while, it makes people feel comfortable being themselves … because you’re being yourself, too! You can also add more structure to these conversations if you like and periodically host Twitter chats, conversations about a particular topic at a specific date and time, held together by a pre-designated hashtag.8) Encourage employees to be social on behalf of your company.When employees post social media updates about or on behalf of their company, it does a few things:It lets people know that person gives a hoot about the company they work for.It lets people get to know the names, faces, and personalities behind a company.It gives the company’s content way, way, way more reach.While some companies, due to the nature of their industry, may need to keep a tighter lid on their social media networks, most businesses could really benefit from encouraging employees to use their social media accounts to share company content. And yes, they should even be able to do that during work hours! The times, they are a-changin’.9) Admit your mistakes.Everyone screws up. It’s human. I’m not saying you should seek out mistakes to humanize your brand, but no one expects you to be perfect. Just like your mama told you, it’s how you respond to your mistakes that matters! If you’ve suffered a public faux pas, just own up to it and apologize. Be genuine, and don’t place blame elsewhere — accept it on your own. People will move on quicker than you expect, and you’ll emerge looking like a company that truly cares about what their audience thinks.10) Poke fun at yourself.Eventually, some of those mistakes you made will actually be funny — “some” being the operative word. Take our blog post from a couple months ago, “Marketing Hall of Shame: HubSpot’s Worst Marketing Mistakes, Revisited,” for example. A lot of those mistakes weren’t very funny at the time, but we took our public shaming and enough time had elapsed that we could poke a little fun at ourselves. If you don’t take yourself too seriously, even make fun of yourself from time to time in a manner that isn’t too self-deprecating, you remind your audience that you’re just like them.11) Sign your emails with your name. Like, your name.Not your company name. A company can’t send an email. A person at your company, however, can. For instance, what does your signature look like in your email marketing? Consider including a real person’s name in your email signature, along with their role at your company, and maybe even a small headshot to make the message more personal.You could also experiment with a more personal “From” field, including the email sender’s real name alongside your company’s name. Your results may vary, so we recommend conducting your own test, but when we A/B tested the inclusion of an employee’s name alongside our company name, the results were fantastic!12) Take off your marketer hat once in a while.Ultimately, you’re doing all this to get more traffic, leads, and customers. We know that. But it can be helpful to approach your efforts with a little less of a methodical marketer mindset, and more of a … human one. For example, not every single tweet needs to be to a landing page. It’s okay to throw in something you think your audience would just plain enjoy sometimes — no link to your blog, lead-capture form, or transaction on the other end. The more you get to know your buyer persones as you interact with them every day, the more naturally you’ll be able to do this; the content will practically roll off your tongue! Once you’ve established this natural rapport with your community, your relationship will be more akin to two friends hanging out — and that makes for customers with higher lifetime value (aaaand the marketer hat is back on).How else can brands make themselves seem less corporate, and more relatable to the world?Image credit: twm1340 Originally published Aug 24, 2012 9:00:00 AM, updated October 20 2016 2) Kill the business babble. Just. Speak. Clearly. Business and industry-specific jargon is just another way of talking over people’s heads, and although you think you sound super smart and important, you’re really just coming off as inaccessible. Is that how you’d talk to someone in real life? No way. Unless you don’t want any friends. Speak like a human being, and your brand will feel more relatable, too.Hint: ‘About Us’ pages are often one of the biggest business babble offenders!3) Inject a sense of humor into your content. It’s easy for B2C companies to create hilarious content — and you certainly should! Everyone loves a laugh. This tip, however, is geared more strongly towards B2B companies; particularly those in kind of “boring” industries.Look, you can get your point across really well with clear, concise, straightforward copy. That’s fine. But you can get your point across and humanize your brand — even delight readers — if you can infuse a sense of humor into your content once in a while. Frankly, nobody expects it from you. And if you’re one of the few brands doing it, it makes you look just awesome. Go ahead. Try to make someone crack a smile. What’s more human than unbridled laughter?4) Publish photos of your team being themselves. Let your fans and followers get to know your employees a bit better by posting photos of them doing things “out in the wild.” We did this on our own Facebook page with the aptly named album “HubSpotters in the Wild,” but I’m a fan of how Deloitte did this on its Facebook cover photo, too. Take a look: That’s the Deloitte China Dragon Boat team. Who knew Deloitte had such cool employees? Well, we all do now! Deloitte (or any company for that matter) could take this one step further by venturing to replace its social media avatars with pictures of real people, as opposed to its logo, too.You don’t need to limit yourself to just social media, either. You could find other places to introduce your employees to the world. At HubSpot, we’ve leveraged the space on our login screen (check it out!) so that when you sign in to your account, you’re greeted with a random HubSpotter’s smiling face, name, and role in the organization! Topics: Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack 5) Introduce your community manager.If you have a dedicated community manager running your social channels — Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, even forums — let people know who that person is. Take Uber, for example. They have an entire photo album on Facebook that introduces each city’s dedicated community manager: When you click into each photo, you get to learn more about the person that’s representing the company. Take a look at Boston’s community manager, Nick:last_img read more

The Future of Inbound: Shel Israel Looks Ahead to the ‘Age of Context’

first_img Inbound Marketing Originally published May 21, 2013 4:00:00 PM, updated February 01 2017 Topics: Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack Shel Israel writes The Social Beat blog column at Forbes.com and has authored four books about digital media’s impact on business. He’s now working on his fifth book, The Age of Context: How it Will Change Your Work and Life with Robert Scoble, due to be published in October. I got a chance to catch up with Israel to talk about the latest trends in marketing: context, personalization, and the debate over tracking cookies. Here’s what he said.Q. Can you tell us a bit about your upcoming book, The Age of Context? What are some examples of “context” we already see around us?A. We look at five converging technology forces: mobile, social media, data, sensors, and location. As we see it, they are creating a huge contextual superforce in which technology becomes far more personal and capable of predicting what we want even before we ask.The book has more than 100 examples, even though we are only at the dawn of this new age. We talk about how sensors will adjust traffic lights in real-time response to accidents or events like concerts, and how first responders can wear Google Glass or another smart eyewear device so that they understand where injured people or hazardous material is located in a burning building. We write about how retailers will use sensors and data to offer real-time rewards when a shopper touches an item, and talk about a new personalized guide that will select programs, movies, and sports events based on your preference and the channels in your cable plan. We also discuss how the New England Patriots are leading the NFL into an era when contextual technology allows in-stadium fans to have cold beers waiting for them at the moment they need them in the nearest concession stand. We explore avenues such as business, health, education, and a great deal more that shows how the life and work of almost everyone is about to change — hopefully for the better.Q. The debate over third-party cookies is getting kind of heated. I understand why people want to shut off cookies and get rid of annoying advertising. But I wonder if we might go too far, and if perhaps we’ll lose the ability to deliver useful, relevant, targeted and contextual content. What do you think? A. Cookies are definitely a trade-off. They allow businesses to do all sorts of good stuff by knowing about each user. But they feel sneaky and make users very nervous about the data being collected. Take that anxiety and combine it with the frustration that the advertising is most often irrelevant to our interests, and it makes sense why people vilify cookies today.I think you are right. If we just turn cookies off, we’ll lose something. Still, I think users should have the right to opt in whenever they possibly can — it’s very different from opting out. Users may make the wrong choice, but it’s their wrong choice to make.Q. Some people are saying that cookies are old-fashioned and will die off, and then we’ll find new ways to track users and deliver better content. What are your thoughts along those lines?A. All technologies age, and right now it’s happening at an accelerated pace. I don’t know of anything that can replace cookies today, but I’d be happy to see a less insidious technology. That being said, trying to ban cookies and stop tracking users altogether isn’t going to happen. Cookie-haters who try to win the fight this way are like people standing on a beach and trying to stop a tsunami rolling in. First, there’s no way you’ll succeed, and second, you’ll be in very deep and troubling waters really quickly.As far as better advertising, I have a mere glimmer of hope that contextual technologies can make a difference. Cookies tell advertisers what we want at a time when we need it. But there is no technology to get them to stop when we no longer need something — nor is there a financial incentive. For example, one Sunday afternoon in January, I shopped around online for a hotel on Cape Cod in June. I made my selection a couple of hours later, booked my car and flight, and was done with the issue. A day has not gone by since then when I haven’t received special offers for hotels on Cape Cod. Advertisers do this all the time. It pisses people off. It hurts the credibility of otherwise decent brands. But the ad folk themselves really have no reason to stop sending me those offers. I’ll probably grow old and die, and still these offers will be sent to the online remnants of me.Q. In the “age of context” how will brands learn about customers and deliver information that they will find useful rather than annoying?A. In the coming age, our personal data, location, and likes will be known, which will help influence the scenarios I mentioned in my first answer. Our book doesn’t deal with one factor — time. It’s the fourth dimension. There is a time when I want to see deals on a new car, refrigerator, or Cape Cod holiday package. And then there comes a time when I don’t — I’ve already made a decision or purchase. A huge step is for advertisers to understand and measure the loss of goodwill that occurs when they produce more noise than signal across all communications channels. If you take it further, contextual ads can someday customize what each household sees on TV. They can even personalize the content you see on the screen in the back of a taxi. The first step, however, faces the biggest barrier: an industry that doesn’t understand that doing what they have always done will not remain effective.Advertisers are in a cold war with the people they are trying to reach. They make TV ads noisier — we invent the mute button. They stick in more ads — we get a fast forward button. This isn’t the way to build a trusted relationship. What do you think the Age of Context looks like, given the recent cookie tracking debate? Share your predictions with us in the comments below. last_img read more

12 Ways to Get More Blog Subscribers [Infographic]

first_imgFor lots of bloggers, publishing blog post can feel a little anticlimactic. You spend all this time researching and writing and editing and designing to get your post out the door, and when you finally hit publish …… Nothing happens. (Except maybe a tweet or two from your mom and the intern. Thanks, Mom and Intern!) But wouldn’t it be nice if people actually noticed when you published a blog post?Enter: Blog subscribers. If you can get people to subscribe to your blog via email, you can start to build a long-term, sustainable traffic source. These are the people who’ll notice when you hit “Publish.” So how do you actually get people to give over their information to receive your blog posts? While there’s no one-size-fits-all plan to get more subscribers for your blog, there are a few things you can try with your audience — and hopefully some of them will stick. Check out the infographic below, which was created by Backlinko, to get an idea of all the different ways you can get more blog subscribers. 1K+Save 1K+SaveShare This Image On Your Site read more

How to Add Slide-In Calls-to-Action to Your Blog Posts [Tutorial]

first_img Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack Calls to Action Topics: Language allows you to change the language of the non-editable parts of the CTA, including the form field labels. Currently, it is possible to translate these parts of the form to French, Spanish, Japanese, German, and Brazilian Portuguese. Lastly, create a thank-you message that your visitor will see after submitting your form.In this step, you can also add a link to additional resources/downloads and include some lightly formatted text, like this:3) Adjust your options.Within the “Flow Options” section, you can adjust the location of your flow, the triggers that will cause it to appear for your user, and more.First, you can adjust the internal name for your Lead Flow or unpublish it if needed. When naming your CTA, keep in mind that this is the name that will appear in your contact timeline and in internal email notifications.Next up, configure which pages you’d like your flow to appear on. You’ll notice that the ‘exact match URL’ option in HubSpot Marketing Free supports a wildcard option. For reference, a wildcard is a character like an asterisk that serves as a placeholder for a character or group of characters — for example: “http://www.website.com/blog/*”.So if you’d like your CTA to appear on all pages on your blog, make sure you add that “*” at the end.Following location, you can choose the action that will trigger the Lead Flow. Your trigger options will vary depending on the Lead Flow type you’re using, but the following options are available for slide-ins: Page scroll. This will trigger the moment your visitor scrolls 50% down your page.Elapsed time. This will trigger the moment X seconds have past (minimum of seven seconds). Don’t want this Lead Flow to appear on mobile? You can disable it using the next option. (Note: Lead Flows are fully mobile optimized, so in most circumstances it’s recommended to include your Lead Flows on mobile.)Lastly, you can enable/disable internal email notifications for new submissions on this Lead Flow. With notifications enabled, you’ll receive an email whenever a contact is captured.You can also connect your free tools to an email provider (more on that here). If you have HubSpot’s free marketing tools connected to a provider you can select which lists new contacts that submit this Lead Flow will be pushed into.(HubSpot users: The Lead Flow is treated like a form. When someone fills it out, they enter the database as a form submission. From there, you can set up workflows or automated emails within HubSpot based on those form submissions.)4) Preview & publish your CTA.The Lead Flows editor provides an interactive preview where you can test each stage of your Lead Flow and see it in action. This preview offers the ability to view on desktop, tablet, and mobile.When you’re ready to publish your Lead Flow, simply select the blue “Publish” button in the top right.Need to unpublish it for some reason? Head into the “Options” tab and you’ll find an “Unpublish” option at the top. You can also unpublish right from the Lead Flows Dashboard.Once you get your Lead Flow up and running, you can track views and conversions right from your dashboard. Here’s a little preview of what that’ll look like:Whew, we’re finally done. You did it! Excellent work. Now let us know how it goes.Have you experimented with slide-in CTAs? Share your tips and tricks in the comments below.Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in April 2014 and has been updated for freshness, accuracy, and comprehensiveness. Many blogs — including this one — end each post with a call-to-action that leads to a landing page.But the question is … are readers noticing your blog’s CTAs?The problem with static CTAs at the bottom of each blog post is that after a while, visitors learn to tune them out. This isn’t only a problem with your repeat visitors, either — since so many blogs implement this tactic, even your new visitors might be ignoring your “additional content” or “recommended next steps.”Convert more website visitors into leads. Try HubSpot’s free email capture software today.To combat this, some blogs have started to implement something called a slide-in CTA. Ideally, this CTA will enter the screen below your sidebar content so it doesn’t cover it. If you don’t have a sidebar, it’ll simply slip right in on the right side once it’s triggered.Pretty cool, right? If you’re interested in testing out this type of CTA on your blog, we’ll walk you through the instructions below. But first, let’s explore some numbers …Do These Slide-In CTAs Actually Work?When we first implemented slide-in CTAs on our blog, we decided to run some tests to find out if they we’re actually working.Over the course of a month, we ran a test where we added these slide-in CTAs to ten of HubSpot’s highest-trafficked blog posts. We compared the slide-in CTA vs. the static CTA at the bottom of each post and looked at three data points:Clickthrough rate (CTR) – What percentage of blog post visitors clicked each CTA?Conversion rate (CVR) – What percentage of the people who clicked ultimately converted on the landing page form?Submissions – How many leads did each CTA ultimately generate?In this test, the slide-in CTA had a 192% higher CTR and generated 27% more submissions. The number of submissions actually wasn’t higher, because the CVR on the slide-in CTAs was lower than the static CTAs. But the volume of clicks was so great that it was worth compromising on CVR.Keep in mind that the success rate of any CTA will have a lot to do with your specific audience, so we encourage you to run some tests of your own to determine if slide-in CTAs are the right fit for your blog.How to Install Slide-In CTAs on Your Blog Using HubSpot Marketing FreeTo install these slide-in CTAs on your blog, you’ll need:Access to either your WordPress account, or the ability to add a line of JavaScript to your company’s website.A free HubSpot account (sign up here).If you don’t have access to #1, email this article to your webmaster so he or she can setup HubSpot’s free marketing tools for you. You can do the rest.If this seems overwhelming, keep in mind that you’ll only need to do step one once. Once the JavaScript or WordPress plugin are added to your site, you can simply create new slide-in CTAs right from your HubSpot account.1) Install HubSpot’s free marketing tools on your website. First, create your account.You’ll be asked to install a piece of JavaScript before the tag in the HTML of your website. Here’s a guide on how to do that for most content management systems, including Joomla, Drupal, Weebly, and more.If you use HubSpot to host your website, you can add Lead Flows (pop-ups forms) as an add-on in Products & Add-ons by following these instructions. 2) Create a Lead Flow and choose “slide-in box” as the type.Once you have HubSpot’s free marketing tools (or Lead Flows in your existing HubSpot portal) all set up, you’ll want to start by creating a Lead Flow — an all-in-one conversion pop-up that allows you to target your audience with specific content.To access the Lead Flows editor, click “Lead Flows” in the top navigation, then “Create Lead Flow.”Once you’re there, you’ll have several customization options. First, you’ll need to choose your Lead Flow type. To achieve the slide-in CTA effect, you’ll want to select “slide-in box.” (Note: You can choose between a slide-in that appears on the right or left — it’s up to you.)After that, it’s time to craft your actual “callout” or CTA. Your CTA provides an opportunity to grab your visitor’s attention with a brief description of what you’re offering via a title, description, image, and theme color.In the callout step of the editor you can:Upload an image (also included in the form step).Set your callout text (the main header).Adjust the button text (also included in the form step).Set the theme color which will be included throughout the Lead Flow.You will see a live update of the changes you make on the right-hand side of the editor. Here’s a closer look at what it might look like:Still with us? Good. It’s time to build your form.Within the form step, you can add additional fields to the form, change the language of the fields, and add a body to elaborate on the value you are providing with your Lead Flow. Originally published Jul 22, 2016 8:00:00 AM, updated February 28 2018last_img read more

The Short Attention Span Solution for Marketers (Hint: It’s Email) [Infographic]

first_img Originally published Jul 11, 2017 6:00:00 AM, updated October 30 2019 Email Marketing Don’t forget to share this post! Email marketing might be entering a mid-life crisis.According to Entrepreneur, 2017 marks its 40th birthday, with 1978 cited as the year when the first marketing email was delivered. The sender, the story goes, was Gary Thuerk, an employee of Digital Equipment Corporation — an infamous legend, of sorts, who’s referred to by some as the “father of spam.”Yet — somehow — it seems that email marketing is doing a better job than a lot of other digital communication at prolonging a viewer’s attention span.The stereotypical “mid-life crisis” often involves change that comes after years of overall evolution and improvement. And in a way, email marketing isn’t so different. It’s gone through a number of modifications to make it better, more user-friendly, and less spammy since 1978. And now, Litmus reports, the average time spent reading an email has increased by nearly 7% since 2011. Reap the positive ROI benefits of email marketing with the help of this 14-point checklist for optimizing your emails. But how is that possible, given our oft-cited dwindling attention spans? As it turns out, email marketing might be an exception to that rule for a number of reasons, ranging from improved sending platforms to more mobile-friendly consumption experiences to generally better content.Want the details? You’re in luck. Litmus breaks it down in this the handy infographic below.How to Cure a Short Attention Span With Email79Save79Save Topics:last_img read more

“Why Did My SEO Ranking Drop?” How to Find and Fix Falling Blog Posts Before It’s Too Late

first_img Search Results Topics: Don’t forget to share this post! To demonstrate how this works, I’ll be diagnosing “40 Sales Interview Questions to Recruit the Best Reps in 2017,” which got nearly 24% fewer views in September than May.You’ll need access to Google Analytics and SEMrush to follow these steps.1. Is the search term itself losing traction?Go to SEMrush and enter the post URL into the top search bar. Google Analytics (GA) doesn’t pull the “https://” part of a URL, so make sure you manually enter it. Find the highest-volume keyword the post is ranking in the top five for. It should be fairly general; for example, in September 2017, “40 Sales Interview Questions to Recruit the Best Reps in 2017” ranked #2 for “sales interview questions.”Go to Google Trends and enter that keyword. The default time range is one year.You may need to change the date to see more micro trends; I went with 5/1/2017 to 9/30/17 to see the May through September changes.If interest in the term is steady — or up and to the right — it’s the post, not your audience.2. Has the post declined in the rankings for a major keyword?Go back to SEMrush and enter the post in the top search bar again. Change the date range under “Live data” in the top right to your highest-traffic month. (It should update to say “Historical data.”)Export this list as a CSV. Don’t exit the SEMrush page with the rankings for the post you’re analyzing – you’ll be coming back to it in a bit.Open the spreadsheet, and rename the tab “[High-Traffic Month] [Year]” (for example, “May 2017”.)Delete Columns D-K.Pull up the SEMrush window again. Change the date range to the most recent month.Export this list as a CSV.Delete columns D-K. Copy and paste the contents of this spreadsheet into a tab on the first spreadsheet. Rename the tab “[Most Recent Month] [Year]” (“September 2017”).Go to the first tab. Add a Column D titled “[Most Recent Month] [Year] Rankings”. (For example, “September 2017.”)Insert this formula into cell D2.=VLOOKUP(A2, September 2017!A:B, 2, FALSE)Click the small box in the lower right-hand corner to apply the formula to the remaining rows.Add a Column E and call it “Up or down?”Insert this formula into E2:=B2-D2Highlight Column E. Click “Apply Conditional Formatting” → “Highlight Cell Rules” → “Less Than” and insert “0.”Now every negative rank change is highlighted in red.Notice any particularly high-volume keywords you dropped in rank for. In this case, we went from #1 to #2 for “sales interview questions” (2900 monthly search volume) and from #1 to #3 for “inside sales interview questions” (720 monthly search volume).3. How recently have you updated the post?If you haven’t touched it in over six months, a fresher and more comprehensive link might be winning.Action item: Update the post with additional content, more recent links, etc.4. How recently have you promoted the post in an email?A big bump in traffic from our email subscribers usually lifts rankings:Action item: Include the post in an email send, either as the first or second link. (Any lower, and it won’t get clicks, rendering this strategy pointless.)5. Are the posts that have surpassed it in the search engine results pages higher-quality; e.g., more comprehensive, more examples, better graphics/visuals?That probably means their time-on-page is higher and bounce rate is lower. They may be getting more referral traffic than you as well.Action item: Do whatever your competitors are doing … but better. If their guides feature a subject-matter expert, feature two subject-matter experts. (Because this is a time- and energy-intensive technique, don’t use it unless you’ve exhausted all the others, or this is a really competitive and important keyword.)6. Are you getting fewer backlinks than your competitors/has your number of backlinks declined?As websites disappear or change, you naturally lose backlinks.You can find this information on SEMrush by entering the post URL in the top search bar and scrolling down until you see this:Action item: Quote one or more influencers — either by pulling from something they’ve published, or reaching out for a direct quote — then, ask them to share the post with their audiences.7. What if your ranking hasn’t dropped?See if the keyword now has a search feature.Search features include:Featured snippet (FS)People also ask (PAA)CarouselHere’s an example of how a carousel result would look for a topic related to sales:… and for the FS and PAA boxes:These typically appear in what’s known as the “position zero” slot, meaning everything below is bumped down. Suddenly, the #1 ranking is in second place.Action item: Try to improve upon the current FS. Can you provide the same information but with less jargon? With more detail? Greater accuracy? This obviously changes on a case-by-case basis, but usually, the snippet isn’t perfect.See if there’s an ad — or several.Paid results can also — sometimes simultaneously — be at fault.Take a look at the results for “How to use CRM”:Unfortunately, there isn’t much that can be done about these paid results — except to just accept the dip in traffic.Use Google Search Console.Google Search Console can also help diagnose the issue.In the left sidebar, choose Search Traffic → Search Analytics:Next, click “Pages” → “Filter Pages” → “URLs Containing”, then paste the URL of the post you’re analyzing.“URLs Containing” is preferable to “URL is exactly” because you don’t want to miss any modified versions of that URL, i.e. one with UTM parameters.Then, click “Dates” → “Set date range” → “Last 90 days” — that’s as far back as Google will go.Here’s what those top checkboxes mean:Clicks: The raw number of clicks from the SERPsImpressions: The number of times the page showed up on the SERPCTR: Clicks divided by impressionsPosition: Average ranking for all the different queries this page shows up for. (Take this metric with a grain of salt — if you’re #1 for a low-volume query and #9 for a high-volume one, your Position will be 5, even though one rank is far more valuable than the other.)It may be helpful to look at the changes in Clicks, Impressions, and CTR individually, as checking all of them gives you this:A little overwhelming, no?First, let’s look at clicks. (I’m still analyzing “40 Interview Questions.”)Looks like clicks are going down slightly. (The valleys are the weekends, when far fewer people are searching for professional/educational content.)Impressions are fairly stable.Aha! Here’s the issue. In late September, clickthrough rate (CTR) started falling.Analysis 101:If impressions are steady, but your clicks (and therefore CTR) are dropping, your rank is dropping and/or a search feature is pushing your result farther down the page.If impressions are decreasing, but clicks and CTR are constant, seasonality/declining search interest is probably to blame. Verify with Google Trends.If impressions are increasing and CTR is dropping, meaning clicks aren’t growing proportionally higher, check if you’re ranking for an image. You should also check whether your post has started ranking for more long tail keywords — ranking for more keywords, while a good thing (topics/over keywords), will always lead to higher impressions, but clicks may suffer as you may not always rank highly for those longer tail keywords.Now scroll down and look at the most common queries leading people to your page. Does the content on the page reflect what they’re looking for?I’ve highlighted the queries this post will not answer.Decide whether it’s worth updating the post to address these content gaps. Since this one is about interviewing salespeople, not marketers, I’m not going to add marketing interview questions – that’d be too out of left field. And since “sales interview exercises” sounds like an entirely separate post, I’m not going to add that in, either.However, sometimes you find a relevant angle that’s missing from your post. When that’s the case, by all means, go ahead and include it — it can only help.How to Stay on Top of Your RankingsIf you’re a blog editor, writer, or manager, I recommend running a report at the end of every month to see which of your property’s top URLs have lost traffic.Periodically reviewing these:Helps you rescue pages before they permanently slip in the rankingsReveals search trendsGives you a sense of your audience’s interests — both stable and changingThe first time you do this analysis, pick your highest-traffic month from the past half-year. Using a medium- or low-traffic month will give you a more conservative estimate of which URLs have declined in organic traffic, which may disguise pages in trouble.In GA, go to the left-hand sidebar and click “Behavior” → “Site Content” → “All Pages.”Add your segment and select your date range.If you’re analyzing a property that doesn’t have a given segment, click “Advanced” and apply this filter:“Include” “Page” “Containing” “[Property URL]”Scroll to the bottom and change “Show rows to 500.”Click “Export to CSV.”Open your spreadsheet, name the first tab “[Month] [Year]”, then rename Column B “Views [Month] [Year]”, and delete all other columns.Go back to GA. Change the date range to the most recent fully completed month (i.e. if you’re doing this on October 30, the date range would be September 1, 2017 – September 30, 2017.)Your filter and the number of rows from the previous month you pulled should still apply, so all you have to do is click “Export to CSV.”Open your spreadsheet, rename Column B “Views [Month] [Year]”, and delete all other columns. Copy the contents of this spreadsheet, then paste it into the second tab of your highest-traffic month spreadsheet. Name the second tab “[Month] [Year]”.Go back to your first tab. Name Column C “Views [Month] [Year].”In cell C7, insert this formula:=VLOOKUP(A7, ‘Sept 2017’!A:B, 2, FALSE)Click the box in the right-hand corner of the cell to apply this formula to the remaining rows.Rename Column D to “15+% decline?”Insert this formula into D7:=IF(C7<(B7-(B7*0.15)), "YES", " ")Apply the formula to the remaining rows.Click “Conditional Formatting”, “Highlight Cell Rules,” “Text that Contains…” and set “Specific text” “containing” “Yes” to red.And So, If You Remember Nothing Else ...Here's a recap.1. Every month, run a report to identify the top posts that have declined in traffic.2. Determine whether the search term is declining in traffic (nothing you can do) or whether the post itself is dropping in rank (lots you can do).3. If it's the latter, diagnose the specific issue(s) using SEMrush and Google Search Console.Yes, this process is a time- and energy-intensive one. But it's easier to fix your car than buy a new one -- and hope you haven't gotten a lemon).Performing maintenance on your blog's greatest hits takes fewer resources than writing a net-new one ... and is usually far more successful.center_img Originally published Nov 24, 2017 6:35:26 AM, updated November 24 2017 Wanna see something scary?That, my friends, is what I would call a definite downward trend — and for a post that, at its high point, received 10,000 views per month.Maybe it looks familiar. And maybe it doesn’t, but it looks like something you want to avoid at all costs.Either way — if you’re a marketer that plays any role in managing your brand’s blog — read on.We’re going to go over some of the ways to avoid that big, scary traffic trend above — or to prevent it from happening again, if you’ve seen it before.Click here to download our free guide to search engine optimization (SEO).First, we’ll begin with the questions you should ask if you’ve noticed your SEO rankings drop. Then, once we’ve covered all those bases, we’ll get into how to proactively stay on top of your rankings, to get into good habits that can help you maintain your blog’s SEO health.Ready to get into diagnosing those problematic blog posts? Let’s get started.How to Find and Fix Your Blog’s SEO Ranking Drops: 7 Questions to AskIs the search term itself losing traction?Has the post declined in the rankings for a major keyword?How recently have you updated the post?How recently have you promoted the post in an email?Are the posts that have surpassed it in the SERPs higher-quality, i.e. more comprehensive, more examples, better graphics/visuals?Are you getting fewer backlinks than your competitors/has your number of backlinks declined?What if your ranking hasn’t dropped?last_img read more

Here’s The Best Explanation We’ve Seen For Louisville Coach Bobby Petrino’s Timeout

first_imgBobby Petrino calls an inexplicable timeout vs. Florida State.YouTubeIf you’re like us, you’re still absolutely baffled regarding what happened at the end of the Louisville vs. Auburn game in Atlanta. For those who missed it, Cardinals head coach Bobby Petrino called his team’s final timeout with 52 seconds to play, despite Auburn having just been charged with a holding penalty that negated a first down. Here’s video:Well, Fox Sports’ Joel Klatt has the best explanation we’ve seen. Basically, because the run went for a first down, Louisville was forced to accept the holding penalty. Because the penalty was a live-ball foul, the play clock, by rule, was set to 25 seconds, and was to be started on the referee’s signal. By that logic, Petrino made a mistake calling timeout, as only 25 seconds, not 40, would have run off of the clock. Instead, because of the timeout, Auburn ran its third down play, and the play clock then reset at 40 seconds. As Klatt notes, it’s not as huge a mistake as originally thought. But Louisville would have gotten the ball back.To clarify the end of Louisville game…run play went for first down, but holding was called and Louisville had to accept the penalty….— Joel Klatt (@joelklatt) September 5, 2015clock was going to start on the ready for play with 25 second play clock…would have taken the game clock down to around 24 seconds….— Joel Klatt (@joelklatt) September 5, 2015Auburn would have had to punt with 24 seconds left and Louisville would have had their timeout left…thats why Petrino said “I screwed up”— Joel Klatt (@joelklatt) September 5, 2015by taking the timeout before the third down then the play clock after the play was 40 seconds leaving inside of 5 seconds for 4th down— Joel Klatt (@joelklatt) September 5, 2015confusion was surrounding officials announcement that their wasn’t 10 second runoff which applies only to penalties that prevent the snap…— Joel Klatt (@joelklatt) September 5, 2015or intentional grounding and illegal forward passes…holding does not create a 10 second runoff situation…SO, it was ill-advised to take— Joel Klatt (@joelklatt) September 5, 2015the TO but it was not egregious— Joel Klatt (@joelklatt) September 5, 2015It’s certainly a confusing rule, and perhaps one that should be looked at. Either way, the confusion cost Louisville this afternoon.last_img read more