Using Social Media to Improve Business

The evolution of tried and true advertising and marketing strategies can largely, in part thank social media.  The vast world-wide web makes information readily available and also gives more customers an active voice, more than ever before.  By now, most of us are familiar with the presence of social media platforms (i.e. Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and LinkedIn), but some may not quite know its true benefit, especially from a business standpoint.  At McCauley Marketing Services we work with our clients to develop a strong presence on social media because we believe it’s a great tool for building not only your brand but also a rapport with current and potential customers.  Below are a few benefits social media integration can lend to help improve your business (big or small).

social media click farmsIncrease visibility.  For this you have to “give a little to gain a little.”  What we mean by this is that specific algorithms within say Facebook and Google+ rank the value of your content.  When someone searches for your particular service, they will see information that they might find interesting.  If you have a low number of followers/fans then your information is less likely to be seen by them and certainly even less by their friends.  We recommend testing out paid advertising to help you reach a broader audience.  For example, with Facebook you have the opportunity to spend as little as $5 a day to get your company’s name more visible.  Whether you want more page likes or website traffic, you can set a budget, a target demographic and visual artwork to increase your opportunity to connect with the customers most likely to use your service.  If they don’t see you, how will they know you exist at all?

Start a dialogue.  Social media is one big conversation and everyone has something to say, or at least the opportunity.  The internet allows customers to say whatever comes to mind and everyone/everything is fair game.  By knowing what is being said about your business or brand (no matter if it’s negative or positive), you actually have the ability to use it for the betterment of your company.  Nowadays, customers like to know the good, the bad and the ugly.  It’s how you respond to these statements that increases the opinion of your brand in a customer’s mind.  Responding to negative comments/reviews on social media in a professional manner and actively working to solve an issue in the public eye can resonate louder than staying silent.  Own up to mistakes, offer a solution and actively seek answers from customers as to how you can improve.  If a customer says something nice, a simple thank you shows that you appreciate the time they took to say something and can even lead to a positive review.  From a consumer’s standpoint, knowing that their opinion matters can help gain respect for a brand.  For you, this means a potentially new customer base as well as strengthening the relationship with returning customers.

Stay relevant.  Why should a person care about what you have to offer?  Your goal is to share information about your product and services in a way that makes you memorable.  Customers don’t want to feel like you’re always selling them a product but rather an enjoyable experience.  Sharing pictures of what’s happening in the office or uplifting subject matter, like your favorite sports team winning or a recent meal shared with family and friends, gives you a more personal connection.  If you observe what customers are talking about you can strategize how you can be a strong force within the conversation.  There are free social media tools available to help you personalize trending keywords and topics that are relevant to your business and follow real-time developments within each social media platform.  You don’t have to participate in every conversation, but knowing what’s viewed as important can offer a lot of insight on the type of materials you could share that would be deemed pertinent to your customer base.  Sharing information that other industry competitors have shared, or at least being an active voice in a dialogue on their social media pages, is a good approach as well.  It allows their fans to see your comments and can lead to them further exploring what you offer just from seeing a like or a share on your competitor’s social media page.

Figuring out how to effectively market your business within this social media jungle can be daunting, but the good thing is there is a solution!  If you’re interested in starting your journey to increasing your business’ visibility, contact us today.  Be sure to connect with us, McCauley Marketing Services, on FacebookTwitter, and Google+.

What Makes Someone Leave Your Website?

At McCauley Marketing Services, we often emphasize the importance of website design, copywriting, and strong search engine optimization (SEO) is to our clients, since the web is usually the first tool consumers use to find and gather information. How your website looks, accessibility and its navigation are important elements in attracting customers and keeping them coming back for more updated information. The web content works to provide the necessary material for clients and potential clients to learn more about your business– how they get to your website and getting them to stay there is another story. In order to do a successful job of attracting visitors and keeping them active on your page, it’s important to think about what could cause visitors to leave. Below we’ve shared some common reasons that typically cause visitors to quickly exit out of a webpage:

  • Too many advertisementswebsite-design-atlanta-georgiaIf possible, try to avoid advertisements or be discrete with them. Visitors are often triggered to exit out of a website due to flashing or pop-up ads. It is important that your website content is not covered up by advertisements as it was your content that drew them to your site initially.
  • Bad navigation

Navigation should not be complex— this can cause users to eventually become frustrated. Make sure not to scatter your main navigation links throughout your page or bury them in the body text. Grouping navigation in one central area so that it is organized, and including a site map can be helpful for users.

  • Boring/outdated content or design

Your website should want to make visitors come back. Your web design does not need all the bells and whistles—simplistic pages can be effective if done correctly. In order to engage visitors, your site should contain interactive elements such as blogs or a discussion forum which should be updated consistently. Remember to update your web content frequently which can increase an interest level in your site. A great way to keep content fresh is by adding a blog that contains recent events, news, or even pictures.  Additionally, avoid using “under construction” as it can cause visitors to not come back at all.

  • Poor readability

Pages that contain bright colors, dated images, numerous typos, or typefaces that aren’t legible are often a deterrent.  Thoroughly organize your pages and consolidate content with short paragraphs, lists, headers, and take advantage of whitespace.

  • Audio or video that starts automatically

Eliminate audio and video that streams automatically as most visitors prefer to have the preference to start it themselves.

  • Pages that take too long to load

We live in a society that wants “it” and wants it immediately. Same thinking goes for websites—visitors don’t like to sit and wait for pages to load. Though this can often be attributed to a bad internet connection speed of the user, or users with out-of-date browsers, which there’s nothing you can do in that regards. For users with high-speed internet, you can tailor the design and content however you prefer.

By avoiding these content and design mishaps, you may increase traffic and keep them coming back for more. McCauley Marketing Services understands the importance of creating both user and search-engine friendly websites. Our experienced team of web developers, graphic designers, copywriters, and market researchers work closely with clients to identify the appropriate material to showcase their businesses’ assets, improving customer service and customer relationship management.

For the most up-to-date marketing news and information, be sure to follow McCauley Marketing Services on Facebook, Twitter, and Google+, or contact us by calling (770) 447-1114.

Tips for Successfully Marketing Your YouTube Channel

Did you know that more than 1 billion users visit YouTube each month and 6 billion hours of video are watched monthly? Pixability, a YouTube marketing and advertising company, recently gathered these statistics in a comprehensive study, “The Top 100 Global Brands: Key Lessons for Success on YouTube,” which measured how the best global brands utilize YouTube by way of quality digital marketing techniques and drive of video content. We at McCauley Marketing Services recommend that just like other social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn, your YouTube channel should sufficiently represent your business or brand. Pixability generated a list of the best practices for YouTube marketing which we have shared with you below:

  • Produce high volumes of video content regularly

youtube - marketing tipsLeading brands produce 50% more videos on their channels compared to the less successful brands and publish close to 500 videos monthly.

  • Study the inner workings of YouTube’s video optimization

YouTube does not follow traditional search engine optimization (SEO) practices in which Google prioritizes web pages with YouTube video embeds. 25% of the Top 100 Global Brands thoroughly studied the optimization of their videos and channels, producing double the amount of tags and playlists.

  • Video production doesn’t need to be of the highest quality to get more views

Publishing a broad range of videos of lower quality is just as effective.

  • Branding should be consistent throughout

It’s not just the video content that is important; titles, tags, descriptions, and metadata are essential for attracting viewers.

  • Share, share, share

Utilize social media platforms such as Facebook and Twitter to share videos to therefore engage others to share as well.

  • Determine the correct length of your videos

Publish a variety of different videos that represent your brand sufficiently. This can help you collect the necessary analytics to decide the how long your videos should be and discover what may or may not be working for your company. Up to 85% of viewers are most likely to watch videos that are 2 minutes or less.

  • Content > Channels

Studies show that 37% of all YouTube channels have not been updated with new content for more than 120 days. Thriving marketers target their channels to precise audiences.

In order to successfully market your brand via YouTube or other social media networks, we believe that businesses need to present themselves as reputable sources that serve as a connection to valuable content for their followers. By utilizing these YouTube marketing tips, you can create an image for your brand that is relevant, educated, and interesting to viewers.

For more on the latest marketing tips and updates, follow McCauley Marketing Services on FacebookTwitterGoogle+, and Pinterest or contact us for assistance with your marketing strategy.

15 Common Traits of Successful Business Owners

“I’m convinced that about half of what separates successful entrepreneurs from the non-successful ones is pure perseverance.” — Steve Jobs

Ever wonder how the greatest marketing and advertising pioneers such as Steve Jobs, David Ogilvy, and Seth Godin cultivated what we now know as the most successful and innovative business prototypes to exist today? Everyone has an opinion of what they think are the best methods to follow in order to thrive in this industry, but we propose a thought, “is this success truly measured by applying versatile business practices, or is it attributed to specific personality traits that an individual may exude?” Could this be associated with the quality versus quantity concept?

Research has shown that some of the most successful CEOs, politicians, executives, and even world leaders share similar behavioral characteristics and habits. From interacting with customers and how they approach their workload to their morning routines before arriving at the office; the most notable business owners continue to obtain professional achievement by exhibiting the following qualities:

  1. Curiosity
  2. Their persistence prevails
  3. Networking is a must
  4. They remain calm under stressful situations
  5. They set realistic goals
  6. They are always eager to learn
  7. Giving up is not an option
  8. They repeatedly ask questions/Analyze situations
  9. They are always growing—personally and professionally
  10. Stress is their friend, not their enemy
  11. They take time to do things they enjoy—exercise, spending time with family and friends, hobbies, etc.
  12. They don’t tolerate flaws, they fix them
  13. They don’t waste time, they utilize it
  14. They wake up early
  15. They communicate effectively

We at McCauley Marketing Services believe that your brand needs to be evident in everything you do, whether it is your company name, business cards, office environment, website, advertisements, marketing campaigns, promotional items, social media profiles, etc. It should also be reflected in the way you do business; that means the way you act, and how you carry yourself. Practicing these basic principles may encourage you to experiment with new ideas, platforms, technology, and most importantly, they may help improve your brand, cultivate and revive relationships, and potentially grow your business.

What would you add to this list? Head over to our Facebook, Twitter, and Google+ pages and let us know. For more on creating engaging social content, contact us today and learn the latest in marketing trends and tools.

Big Engagement, Little Price Tag: Making Social Media Tools Work for You (for Free!)

Don’t have the budget for a Facebook campaign or sponsored ads on Google? Not to worry. At McCauley Marketing Services, we know that social media is all about how well brands use the tools available to engage their audience, not necessarily just about how much money they spend to do it. Instead of throwing money at your marketing team – even if the “team” is just you – force it to get creative and resourceful. Below is a list of social media tips, tools, and best practices that businesses can use to get a leg up on your branding success.

Listen and Learn

All-Social-Media-Buttons-in-RowYou can’t respond to what people are saying if you don’t listen in. Paying attention to the conversation will put you ahead of the marketing curve when it comes to addressing customer complaints, heading off crises, and detecting important trends. And you don’t have to be glued to your monitor all day to do it. Free, easy-to-use services like Google Alerts keep you abreast of any online mention of your brand, while Social Mention keeps track of the conversation on a dozen different platforms, including microblogs and bookmarks. Other similar useful tools: Icerocket, Hootsuite, Tweetdeck, Topsy, and Brand24.

Repackage Your Content

Don’t just tweet your brand’s big news and call it a day. What about your Pinterest followers or the diehard careerists on LinkedIn? If you’re launching a new product, for example, post an exciting behind-the-scenes shot on Pinterest and provide a bulleted list of the product’s amazing attributes in a LinkedIn article. The same newsworthy item can be remade over and over to suit the preferences of all your audiences. Don’t have much going on? Update and republish older content. You can lower your voice temporarily, but you should never leave the conversation.

Get to Know Your Audience

No, you’ll never meet all of your brand’s supporters personally, but you can drive up your chances of turning them into paying customers by getting to know their habits and opinions. This can be as simple as posing an engaging question – for example, asking your Twitter followers to tweet their favorite ice cream flavor.

Remember That It’s Not About You

Social media is about other people. No one logs on to Facebook because they’re dying to know what Nike is up to, but they might pay attention if Nike wants to know what they’re up to. Striking a balance between self-promotion and genuine engagement can be tricky at first, especially as you determine your social media personality and goals. Try to see your brand objectively and don’t be afraid to ask followers for feedback!

For the most up-to-date marketing news and information, be sure to follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Google+, or contact us by calling (770) 447-1114.

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