Lead generation through email marketing and through banners on social media websites and blogs has been a ubiquitous practice since a long time. But with the rise of mobile browsing and searching to mainstream prominence, the tactics and methods need to change now, or businesses will risk being left behind.
It is important to understand that the behavior of the customers during mobile browsing is very different than it is while browsing online. So your strategy, content and design needs to adjust itself accordingly. The most important thing you need to understand about mobile browsing and lead generation through it is that even though mobile browsing enjoys a handsome percentage of browsing and searching share, people (like to) spend considerably lesser time on mobile websites, articles, and forms than they do on desktop websites. This is because mobile browsing is usually intermittent, and is done in between tasks to pass time. This is why, you have to be even more precise and bang-on with your aim. Here are 6 tips that will help you with it.
Either have a responsive website or have a dedicated mobile website. Full desktop websites look very crammed and disorganized on mobile screens, which can turn the user off and urge him to browse away. Having a mobile website allows you to position the links as you want, on the top or the very beginning of the webpage so that you do not have to rely on the user to navigate to the bottom and only then get to see the important links.
For mobile content, follow the 10-second rule. This means that the readers should know what the article is all about within the first 10 seconds. This could be done by beginning the article with the punch line or mentioning the crux of the article in the summary.
The Call-to-Action buttons on the mobile website should be simple, large and readable. This not only makes them more prominent and readable but also makes them more tempting to tap on. It is actually true that compelling CTA buttons urge users to tap on them more often.
Have a look at the CTA buttons used by Nike on their mobile website to pre-order their Hypervenom range of football boots.
Users just do not like forms. And if the form is unnecessarily long or requires them to fill in information that they have already filled before, you can be sure to wave them goodbye and see other, more diligent businesses gain them. To avoid this, have short forms, as short as possible. You do not need to have all the information in the world about them in the lead phase itself. And above all, auto-fill information that they have already filled in somewhere on some other web page, or have chosen an option somewhere. A little bit of code from your end would make their job much easier and would prompt them to continue on your website.
Gaining unique traffic once is good. But having users return again and again is much better. This can be made possible by giving healthy discounts and other loyalty benefits to returning customers or visitors that is made available through your mobile website. You can also give out weekend discounts, festive discounts, promotions, offers or combo schemes that will encourage users to return to your website again and again. The same can be redeemed through promo codes, subscriptions, etc.
Mobile SMS campaigns are still very popular and are used by some of the biggest names in each industry. You can ask users to text them while purchasing and instantly offer them a discount on their purchase. This way, you get to collect a database after which you can send them an SMS about once or twice a month (but not more than that) about any new discount or offer that your brand is offering. Also, you should add a line to help them unsubscribe by texting back in case they want to.
Using these simple techniques, you can easily generate more leads from mobile marketing and make the most of them to give your business a boost.
The 24th iteration of the Google Panda algorithm has been rolled out. Dubbed as Panda 4.0, this spam-fighting update will make sure that only high quality websites are displayed on the top of SERPs (search engine result pages). This also means that many websites will be hit and many previously hit websites will escape unscathed and (hopefully) regain some part of their previous rankings.
For Panda, as all webmasters probably know already, the top priority is website quality. This includes the content on the website, the design and usability of the website, and the links on it. Here are a few ways how you can escape penalty, or revive your website if it has been hit before.
No matter how many updates are rolled out and changes are made by Google, this will always be the only constant. Content includes the text, images, videos, infographics, diagrams, banners, advertisements, and just about every audio-visual element that your website contains. Every piece of content should make sense, and anything that is not needed should not be there. The content should be engaging, informative, educational, interactive, or all of these. Good quality content will earn you a better ranking and more respect in Google’s (and the world’s) eyes.
Content and design go hand in hand, and compliment each other all along the way. Good content without good design is incomplete and ineffective, and vice versa. The design, layout and colors of the website should be coherent and come out well. You should pay meticulous attention to the link placement throughout the website and do it in a way that it makes browsing and navigation easier and more user friendly.
Google is well-known to be preferential towards big brands, or brands that appear as big brands, and we don’t blame their masterminds for this. After all, good branding develops a feeling of trust and users like to see websites they trust and are familiar with in search engine rankings. Therefore, it is very essential to make your website appear as if it belongs to a big brand. The surest way to do this is by strengthening your company’s social media portfolio. This can be done by regular, engaging and interactive posting to social media platforms and social networking websites like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Google+ and YouTube.
NEVER have links on your website that don’t make sense. If you are a business that deals in auto parts, your website should not have a link of a website that sells mobile phones unless, of course, the two companies belong to the same conglomerate. It is irrelevant and plain embarrassing. Since PageRank is almost dead, link relevance determines authority to quite an extent now. Having links just for the sake of external link building and mutual symbiosis will result in the website looking spammy and a part of a paid link network.
Guest blogging is a great tool to establish authority and thought leadership in your industry. But it must be executed correctly in order to be fruitful. This means that every blog should be useful to the readers and relevant to your industry niche. Also, don’t flood your website with guest posts. One or two blogs a week are ideal, and would suffice to keep your website in the limelight. You should also keep the blog conversational and focused on recent developments in your industry.
Since Google has introduced Authorship, it has become a key factor in determining authority on the internet. Linking Google Authorship to your Google+ account and then regularly posting original, informative, and in-depth content allows you to genuinely portray yourself as a thought leader of your industry. It is also an informal copyright that you gain for your original content. The number of +1’s on your account are basically social signals that tell Google how popular your website is. And although Google’s head of search spam Matt Cutts has denied any direct correlation between +1’s and your website’s ranking, many webmasters and leading SEO-related websites strongly believe that there already is one or will be in near future.
Follow the above tips to stay on top of your SEO game in the face of this latest Panda 4.0 release, and every such forthcoming release. However, you should not merely take these as ways to escape penalty, but as methods that leverage your SEO efforts in the long term. An update lasts for a few days, weeks, or months. A sound SEO policy based on the foundations of long term optimization will help you for years. It will never hurt to have an SEO strategy that remains true to the basics but is also flexible to respond to changes in real time.
In the world of the internet, there is no mantra for success. Some people just bump into success, while others try all their lives with what they think are the best of ideas and do not get what they’re looking for. A lot of this also depends on how they define the “success” of their digital marketing and social media presence. For some, mere engagement is a success story. For the others, it is a complete waste off time and money if their social platforms do not fetch them direct leads, conversions, or even revenue!
Having said that, there do exist some tried and tested ways which, if followed religiously, are sure to pay dividends and make your business the social media star. This applies to all the digital platforms like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+, YouTube, Pinterest, and all the other websites which has a good presence of your target group.
Think different. Thinking on the same lines as a million other companies is not going to help your cause one bit. You have to strive, at all times, to be different and not have a “me too” presence everywhere. You have to think of something that immediately attract people and drive participation and engagement. Remember what Mr. Shiv Khera quoted: “Winners don’t do different things, they do thing differently.”
Once you have your mind clear and filled with fresh ideas, you are ready to move to the next step. Create a goal first. Create a plan after that. Creating a goal will help you work actively towards it, and keep you on track.
As with almost everything that’s fruitful, social media marketing needs investment. That includes investment of time and effort. Allocate a budget for everything. Allocate personnel for it. Then hire a good digital media agency that understands your needs well. Remember, you should not think of the money spent on social activities as money dumped in the bin. It is an investment for the present and future of the company that will pay for itself many times over in terms of engagement, goodwill, and sales. You also need to centralize all your marketing strategies. The thin line between digital marketing and conventional marketing is fast blurring, and is expected to disappear very soon. You need to consolidate both the efforts and make the two marketing strategies go hand in hand, and aid each other, rather than competing against one another and resulting in cannibalism.
Social media acts differently. Here, you need to give more than you take. You need to build relationships, build a reputation and then maintain it constantly in order to increase engagement. Your customers are not fools, they’re your most valuable assets. They understand each and every move of yours, and they’ll only buy from you again and again or maintain their loyalty on social media pages when they discover integrity in your brand. If you’re creating a social presence to just “sell” there as well and create another sales channels, don’t. You’ll do your brand more harm then good. Social media is all about sharing, not selling.
You need to constantly monitor your progress in order to know where you’re going. This goes a long way in determining whether you’re on the right path or not. Your strategies should be very dynamic and flexible. There is no room for idealism on the internet, and you must be ready to change the strategy whenever it’s not working. Based on the monitoring, find out what’s working and what’s not.
Measure the return on investment (ROI) from time to time and, as mentioned earlier, stay flexible. You may have to change the plan when the current one is not working. Whenever you sense that a process is fruitful, repeat it again and again. It’s all bout perseverance.
Above all, be patient. Good things take time. Even in this fast and connected world, success takes time to be achieved. Remember the golden words of the great Warren Buffett himself, “No matter how great the talent or efforts, some things just take time. You can’t produce a baby in one month by getting nine women pregnant.” Keep working and always have faith in your strategy, your team, your investment. One day, for sure, it will pay its dividends.
Fed up of constant late replies to your emails by a subordinate, at office?
Voila! Google Chrome now allows you to track when and where your email was opened and read by the recipient. San Francisco based start up, Streak, has developed the free browser extension to be used with a Gmail account. It notifies the senders when their emails were read and the location as well, by putting the email on a map. By putting the email on a map, Streak not only tells the location of the email, but also provides real-time location updates about the recipients.
The initial hype around the app has also been met with cautious criticism, in light of the recent NSA Leaks, although Streak rebuffs the fears by claiming that it helps tracking important emails, sent at crucial hours. True to its sneaky attribute, one sees an eye icon on the email, which turns green the moment the email is opened. The recipient of the email will not be notified that the email was being tracked and doesn’t need to have Streak installed either, for the sender to track the email. However, the debate is on whether the extension intrudes into the private space of users, who are uninformed about the extension or shall it be restricted for corporate use only. However, Streak has primarily been designed for Online Reputation Management and comprises tools for scheduling mails, sales, recruitment etc. in addition to Google Apps for enterprises. Whether it finds favor with the severely guarded corporate world, is what we are waiting to know.
Facebook’s $19 billion deal last week, made it to the headlines of almost every leading daily across the globe. The news took the world by surprise but apparently, negotiations had been on for over two years, between the social media giant and the smartphone messaging major.
But here’s the befuddling question for most, “why is a free messaging app worth $19 billion?” Zuckerberg’s reply was simple. Whatsapp is a rare mass market service with over a billion users, making it “very valuable” and that the acquisition is in line with his vision to make the world more open and connected. When Facebook came out with its Initial Public Offering in May 2012, it had a strong mobile user base but no mobile advertising revenues, due to its failure to monetise those resources. The acquisition of Whatsapp is a step towards repairing that strategy, with Facebook already having a cushion of 1.2 billion users. Another lure for Facebook to shell out $19 billion was to tap into your smartphone address books. The data is immense and whatsapp’s 450 million users proved that in age of technologival advancements, private, one on one communication is not yet passe and here to stay. Facebook itself tried to invent and re-invent its own messaging applications, but was not successful in catching the customers’ eye like few of the other start ups. This stunning acquisition takes care of it quite smartly.
Whatsapp’s monetisation potential is probably what Zuckerberg was after, given its half a billion and growing users. With this single masterstroke, Facebook has managed to grab 18.4 percent of the mobile publicity market. Of the billion Facebook users, 75% access the social media site from their smartphones. With those staggering statistics, $19 billion does seem to be a resonable number, though the results will tell the final story. As things stand today, the colossal amount of the acquisition reaffirms the impact of private messaging. For parting thoughts, where does this leave the ‘good old SMS’?