Tag Archives: social media

Inbound Marketing

Inbound Marketing 101

What is inbound marketing, and why should you care about it? Inbound is the new, shiny tool in the marketing shed when it comes to sharing with others what your company is all about and why they should care about you. In the digital world we live in, businesses can’t afford to give inbound marketing the side eye; rather, you should opt to embrace this immensely powerful tool to give your company’s marketing strategy a boost.

The 2-Way Difference

This form of marketing focuses on a two-way communication system, engaging and informing consumers about your products or services while simultaneously receiving information from said audience. Inbound is all about establishing and maintaining connections with customers, rather than trying to give them a hard sell like the traditional methods (although both have their place in your strategy).

Customers want solutions to their problems. Inbound marketing strategies give the people what they want by providing answers to questions, innovative solutions to problems, and rich content that engages an audience and leaves them with a delectable taste in their mind’s mouth when it comes to your business.

The Mediums

Inbound is chock-full of digital mediums to explore in your marketing strategy. A few of our key favorites we like to get people started with are:

Websites are an absolute must if you want to make it in today’s marketplaces. Without a dependable online hub for your audience to visit, your company will quickly be forgotten and consumers will travel to the next competitor that has what they’re looking for.

Blogs are an exceptional way to help engage customers, build your credibility, and do some essential SEO in the background to boot. Providing rich content that solves problems positions you as a credible, go-to source and leaves an audience coming back to you for more. Plus, blogs are great for building a strong SEO foundation to help you stand out and be more easily found by potential customers.

Social Media presence is a vital ingredient in the well-rounded marketing cocktail, too. It offers wonderful platforms to receive customer feedback and to showcase what you have to offer, and even allows you to share that hilarious meme your followers will get a kick out of.

Use It or Lose It

What makes inbound marketing even more wonderful? Analytics. These digital avenues provide exceptional data on who is coming to your material, what they’re doing during visits, and so much more. Wielding this information to your benefit is made easier than ever before with fabulous tools like Google Analytics and Facebook Insights. The more you know about your audience, the better you are able to give them what they want. It’s a win-win.

Ready to get your inbound marketing strategy up to snuff? Our team can help get you started in the right direction. Give us a call today for more information, and to set up a time to chat about implementing these innovative solutions into your marketing strategy today.

The Missing Link in Your Social Media Strategy

 

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Whether you’re a small B2B start-up with a less-than-extravagant marketing budget, or a large, well-known corporation with offices all over the country, LinkedIn should be an essential part of your social media marketing strategy.

LinkedIn could be nicknamed the “professional Facebook,” a network where professionals can go to seek jobs or employees, attract new sales leads, share and read industry insights, but ultimately to interact, or connect, with others.

Whether your company has yet to build a LinkedIn page, or you have one but rarely interact with it, it’s time to think differently. Don’t let LinkedIn be the missing link in your social media strategy. Let’s review our top five reasons why your business needs a LinkedIn page.

1. Show Your Credibility – First and foremost, LinkedIn is connecting your business with other companies and professionals in your industry and community. With that said, this is your place to shine and show off to them. Show off what you’re great at (like on a Showcase page!), share your opinions, and participate in discussions that reinforce your expertise. Let everyone know how smart you are! You never know, someone who is seeking your services might be reading. For example, SMG recently announced on LinkedIn the addition of two Summit Creative Awards!

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2. Find the Talent You’re Looking for – If your company is hiring, or thinking about it, LinkedIn is great for a “first look.” Not only can job seekers reach out to you on LinkedIn, but you can also reach out to them! Since it’s easy to look up a user’s job history, special skills, and mutual contacts, your company can take a proactive approach and start a conversation with those you want to hire! For example, check out Adobe’s LinkedIn page.

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3. Deepen Your Knowledge – With the ability to follow as many companies and individuals as you would like, LinkedIn is great for following industry leaders you look up to, your favorite blogs, company updates, white papers, etc. Scrolling through your home feed, you can find content-rich articles in any industry, anywhere in the world, to broaden your knowledge, or to hear another professional’s valued opinion. We often look at Microsoft’s original  and empowering articles!

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4. Find New Sales Leads – As we mentioned before, LinkedIn is great for connecting with others, especially those in your target market. If your page is consistently offering current updates and original content, new, organic leads will start to come your way. Think of lead prospecting on LinkedIn as word-of-mouth advertising gone digital. It’s still about networking, just with a click of a button!

5. And Yes, it’s Free – Besides the special tools LinkedIn offers, like Sales Lead Generation, this social network is FREE. Free to start, free to use, free of any financial risk. So why not? Connect today!

Are you interested in creating or refining your social media strategy? We can help! When you need professional guidance on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, etc., SMG can deal with your social anxiety!

 

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What SMG Learned at Hubspot’s World’s Largest Webinar

 

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SMG recently had the opportunity to tune into the World’s Largest Webinar: Secrets to Success on Social Media in 2014 (#WLW14) presented by Hubspot. The webinar focused on sharing professional insight into three of the biggest social networks out there, Facebook , Twitter, and LinkedIn.

 

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We couldn’t wait to share what we learned from the three social media experts who presented – Jed Clevenger, Russ Laraway, and Scott Engelman. They each spoke about their specific expertise and provided incredibly valuable information. Here are the top three things we took away from #WLW14 that we feel could help you succeed with social media!

 

1. Facebook: Jed Clevenger reminded us that Facebook is based on communicating. Meaning, it’s not always a platform for selling, even on a business page. Facebook for business is about talking to your customers, not at your customers. Use your page to familiarize your customers with what your company represents as well as your human side. Company pictures are a great way to do this! It builds trust in a way that no other medium can. Need an example? Check out Morgan Miller Plumbing or Dusterhoft Family Stores.

 

2. Twitter: Twitter expert, Russ Laraway made an excellent point. Tweet like you would email. With Twitter, you only have 140 characters to make an impression on your audience, if something doesn’t catch their eye quickly, they will keep scrolling through their feed. This is quite like email. With email, your subject line is so important, that if it is not relevant or enticing, your customers will likely never open it. When tweeting, consider how you would email the same information, how would you grasp your audience’s attention right away in the subject line?

 

3. LinkedIn: A big takeaway we took from LinkedIn expert, Scott Engelman, was about sharing content. Many believe that since you are representing your business, all of the content should come from your company. However, sharing content from other companies in your industry or those you do business with is invaluable. This will also allow your company to engage with other industry insiders and link your company to theirs. Plus, they will appreciate the mention. Think of it this way: the most valuable content should win.

 

We took away many great pointers from #WLW14 and now hope you did too! Social media is constantly evolving and keeping up with industry experts and best practices is certainly a helpful tool.

 

What are your biggest social media concerns? Were these tips helpful?

 

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10 Reasons Why Your Business Needs Facebook

 

Hi, again! We hope you enjoyed our first Powered By Creativity blog post: 5 Reasons Why We Love Marketing– and that you’ll continue to enjoy our blog! 

 

10 Reasons Why Your Business Needs Facebook – In honor of Facebook’s 10th Birthday.

 

Happy Birthday, Facebook! The social network reached their 10th birthday on February 4th – celebrating a decade of being the glue that keeps us all together.  Whether you ‘like’ or dislike the social network, it’s impossible to deny that is has changed our lives – and our jobs!

 

Facebook for businesses has seen great strides in the last couple of years and we can’t wait to see it advance further. So, in honor of Facebook’s birthday month, we’ll share with you 10 Reasons Why Your Business Needs Facebook (in no particular order):

 

Birthday-candle  New Customers – With over 1 billion users, you’ll reach an audience you didn’t even know existed (or who didn’t know you existed!).

 

Birthday-candle Business Connections – You can connect with other local or industry-related businesses by liking, sharing and mentioning their company’s content in relation to yours.

 

Birthday-candle Personal Interaction – Since the network is in real-time, you are able to reply to customers instantaneously and establish a personal connection with them. (Great for responding to customer reviews & complaints!)

 

Birthday-candle Analytics – Facebook gives you a detailed play-by-play of how your business page is performing daily. From reach and likes to # of visits and types of visitors- you’ll be able to see areas for improvement at no cost!

 

Birthday-candle Engagement Opportunities – You can create contests, sweepstakes and more while building your fan base. This allows you to reach out to your customers and have them establish an interaction with you!

 

Birthday-candle Photo Albums – Your business can upload as many company images as it would like. This gives fans an inside look at your company and introduces them to a playful side they otherwise wouldn’t have seen.

 

Birthday-candle  Drives Traffic – You can use your Facebook page to drive traffic to your webpage and other links. This is great for introducing new customers to promotions, company updates, etc.

 

Birthday-candle Experiments – Because Facebook is inexpensive to operate; it lends itself well for experimenting with promotions, contests and the like. If something doesn’t attract attention – no great cost is lost.

 

Birthday-candle More Visibility – The more time your business puts into Facebook – the more recognition it will receive. This will help when potential customers search for your business online (Search Engine Optimization!).

 

Birthday-candle Brand Recognition – A Facebook page (or any social network, for that matter) will only help build brand recognition. Facebook assists in sculpting your reputation by showing your company’s values in a new light.

 

Here’s to you Facebook, happy 10 years and many more to come!

 

Are you interested in starting a Facebook page for your business? Need help? Don’t be shy – let us know!