Category: Digital Branding

What is digital marketing
Digital Branding

8 Unique Digital Marketing Methods That Can Help You Develop Your Business

What Is The Meaning Of The Concept Of Digital Marketing?

Digital Marketing is not just about bringing about more online sales, improving your search engine ranking, or increasing your click-throughs. Obviously, these are important aspects, but your team should not just focus on these things. Digital marketing is about increasing exposure and raising brand awareness, which leads in making your brand known to people.

Businesses are doing best they can to stay in the race. Even if your website receives lots of traffic, it doesn’t mean anything if those viewers aren’t converted to customers. Digital marketing is a very competitive field. Although it provides many unique opportunities, it also has its concurrent challenges. Digital marketing provides a very genuine chance to survive, compete. and grow your business. There are methods that digital marketing can substantially help your business.

8 Way Digital Marketing Can Help Your Business

  • It gives you chance to interact with the targeted audience: One of the best advantages of digital marketing is it gives you the opportunity to interact with the audience in real time, unlike traditional marketing. Customers want you to talk to them. The way you interact with your audience decides whether you will succeed or fail. With this interaction, you can understand what your targeted audience is looking for. This information will help you out creating right strategies and improve or add anything to your products or the services.
  • It makes your customers take action: Digital marketing includes many unique strategies that influence people to take actions that will benefit your business or brand. By using smart, customized, and out of the box strategies, you can encourage your visitors to convert on the spot.
  • It levels the online playing field: Digital marketing has also leveled the playing field so that medium and small businesses can compete with the big ones. Any business with a well-designed, responsive website can pull in traffic and sell their products or services in the same way that large companies previously only could do.Appeal to your mobile customers
  • It provides for the mobile consumer: Mobile Internet has eclipsed the users of desktop systems as modern sources of information or means of communication, due to the swift rise of smartphones and tablets. Having a digital marketing campaign that focuses on mobile consumers will benefit the growth of your business. You cannot consider mobiles as an alternative to computers and laptops, but they are one often the way your customers reach you to make purchasing decisions.
  • It brings you conversion: How can you measure the success of your website? This can be done by incoming traffic to your site that gets converted into sales and leads. None of your traffic and marketing campaigns make sense if you can’t change visitors’ behavior.
  • Improves your brand reputation: The audiences who are attracted by your digital marketing services want to know more about your brand and purchase what you have to offer. If you deliver, what you promise, then you will build up a good relationship with your audience. This is how your brand’s reputation is built because the customers who are convinced to buy from your engagement will definitely share their experience with others.
  • Helps you make better revenue: High conversion rates by a digital marketing campaign are forced to benefit your business in terms of money. Small and medium businesses are very much benefited from digital marketing techniques.
  • Gives better return on Investment: Not only does digital marketing help you in building revenue and branding, it provides better ROI than old traditional method. You can easily track and monitor digital marketing, so you can easily calculate your results as soon as your targeted audience takes the desired action, like providing contact information, signing up for a newsletter, or purchasing something. A steady flow of traffic that is converted into leads can be generated from digital marketing. The more traffic generated by your business, the faster you can get your return on investment.

Engage your audience through social media

  • Invest in social media: Social media optimization has become an essential part of digital marketing. Interactions via social media are more crucial than ever, and if you haven’t communicated and associated with your audience, then you will definitely lose a big advantage. There are many social media optimization services which can take your online marketing efforts to next level. This will help you in creating a strong brand identity on social media to appeal your target audience.

So, if you have many visitors on your website but fail to engage them, they will definitely exit your site and perhaps never come back. So, that’s why digital marketing is necessary, as it provides many different strategies and methods to attract traffic that sticks and goes on to produce the results you want.

Click here for more information.

Digital marketing trends
Digital Branding

4 Easy Steps To Improve Your Digital Marketing Strategy

We all know this. To be competitive nowadays, brands have to engage with clients frequently. Technology and social programs have made it effortless to accomplish this, and there appears to be no lack of opportunities for participation.

The issue is that a lot of brands have not gotten the message. To handle the objective of participation, many entrepreneurs pursue digital approaches that emphasize leading discussions, establishing the tone, and setting client expectations. Rather, digital engagement strategies nowadays ought to do the contrary, providing the chance for clients to direct the way.

Digital Marketing Strategy

Some big International branding companies now realize that involvement goes beyond simply reacting to and talking with customers. Today, brands will need to be hyper-focused on providing experiences as opposed to sending messages.

As you may know, Airbnb and HomeAway are the two famous firms that give a platform for matching travelers with personal rental lodging. HomeAway was three years old when Airbnb started in 2008.

To fend off the new comer, HomeAway developed and spent millions of bucks on a digital branding plan that clarified why it was distinct from Airbnb. On other hand Airbnb focused on creating unique content and evoking interest experience for its customers, comparing itself to one.

Now, HomeAway has a market valuation of approximately $3 billion, while Airbnb is valued at about $31 billion. The takeaway lesson is that telling folks a great is not as effective as delivering exceptional experiences that prove you are.

Creating experiences requires deep pockets and excruciating attention to detail. Here are some good approaches for increasing your digital strategy.

Four Steps To Better Digital  Marketing

Mobile marketing rules these days1. Concentrate on mobile first.

It should not be a secret nowadays the customers often interact with companies on their mobile phones. Yet, many entrepreneurs continue to be focused on producing robust sites which fail to provide a fantastic experience through mobile.

According to Google algorithm released on April 22, mobile-friendly website rank higher in Google searches. With the vast majority of digital eyeballs coming via mobile devices, you may damage your brand if you aren’t delivering a mobile-friendly encounter.

2. Stop annoying your clients.

We are overwhelmed with content, and our attention spans have precisely become shorter and much more fickle. If you would like to attract and maintain clients, keep your engagement simple and make sure that it provides value. Even better, track what your clients are doing and discussing and be there to participate with them when they’re prepared.

Engage website visitors

3. Make engagement painfully simple and clear.

Whether you are giving information, doing promotion of a product, or requesting a sign up, your visitor must instantly see and understand what’s expected of them. Hopefully, based on the research you’ve done about your target market, your webpage will understand what visitors want and then supply the expertise they have been hoping to get.

Additionally, any call to action must be incredibly simple to understand and complete. Again, whether you want people to sign up for something or buy a product, the encounter ought to be effortless. For starters, look at using social networking plug-ins that enable visitors to login through Twitter, Facebook, Google+, or alternative social networking account as opposed to generating an entirely new account.

4. Adhere to a site experience.

Many entrepreneurs believe adding a mobile program for their digital approach is crucial, but the simple truth is that responsive design sites have blurred the line between what may be accomplished through a mobile browser and a program. We’ve become overwhelmed with apps and do not need another one polluting our home screen. Having a responsive website serves both you and the customer.

Furthermore, brands must look to leverage existing technology and platforms where your clients are already engaging frequently such as Instagram and Twitter. If that’s where customers are, make yourself amazingly easy to locate you on social websites by adding links and badges which are simple to find on your website.

Creating an effective digital strategy requires time and effort, and entrepreneurs must clearly define their goals before launching one. If you have a small marketing budget build a website with do-it-yourself resources like SquareSpace, Weebly or Wix.

As your company becomes more prosperous, you will want to be more serious about digital marketing and much more concentrated on brand building, direct creation, and client involvement. This requires a more sophisticated custom website built by “designers and developers with the experience to go beyond simple sites and produce long-term and overarching plans focused on producing extraordinary experiences.” A well thought out website will end up being well worth the investment.”

Isn’t this right time to grow your business? Good luck!

This article is written by Naval Gupta, Digital Marketing expert, who currently runs a digital marketing firm DigiArise.

Data Information Research Must Guide Your Branding Decision
Digital Branding

How Data Information Research Must Guide Your Branding Decision

If you’ve ever wondered why it seems so hard for small businesses to succeed, it often comes down to this: they are not appealing to their target audience well. In other words, their branding isn’t working. This could be due to a number of reasons. For instance, maybe they don’t know what kind of branding their target audience reacts best to. Maybe they are unaware of the branding of their more successful competition. Or maybe the audience they’re reaching for has no desire for their products and services, and they should change their product or their target market.

The point is, correct and thorough information must guide your brand building, as it always has. How it does this has changed over the years, especially in this digital age. So what we as marketers need to be asking ourselves is how we can combine traditional market research methodology with newer approaches to create the most relevant brand we can. Additionally, how can we adapt traditional market research to our modern world to get the best, well-rounded information on our target market? We better figure out how, because information is king.

Focus groups aid traditoonal research

Traditional Market Research

 Market research has traditionally revolved around the intersection of primary and secondary information. Primary information depends on interaction with your target market. This means setting up focus groups and user groups, conducting interviews and surveys, and even creating test markets (which are basically a sample size target markets).

Secondary research relies on, well, secondary information – what others have said about your brand or compiled about it. The most valuable of these are competitor benchmarks, which are measurements of growth and performance from competitors. Sales data, government analyses, and commercial data are also obtainable. All of this is free on the internet or available for purchase from third parties.

Traditional market research relied on primary and secondary information as defined above, and marketing and branding ideas were planned according to the information achieved through such means. However, with the rise of social media and the digital age, market research has had to adapt.

Googel Anlytics aids digital research

Digital Age Research

People have been using the term “digital age” for quite some time now, but with the rise of social media and new free-to-use tools like Google Analytics, it would be foolish not to adapt our own definitions to a new context. Let’s start with social media.

The digital age means that everyone is connected to each other, all the time. They are constantly working and communicating by way of digital devices over the internet on platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Reddit, and the like. An infographic published to the iMarketCafe in early 2016 revealed some shocking things about data and the digital age. From a purely informational standpoint, data worldwide is growing 40 percent per year. Moreover, mobile surveys, online communities, and social media analytics were all significantly growing in use by suppliers and buyers in 2015. Public internet forums offer a significant piece of information that is vital to our market analyses.

Free-to-use tools for monitoring web traffic are also a necessity, and it’s surprising how many people don’t use them to their fullest advantage. Specifically, Google Analytics is a free program offered by Google itself that gives you insight into things like how many site visitors you’ve had, demographics of site users, bounce rates, and conversions. This adds an element to your brand building internally with your customer base: What do they like? What don’t they like? How can you keep their attention? Since Google has recently made it very easy to learn Analytics, you have no excuse not to take advantage of this tool. It is one of the digital age’s best advantages we did not have in the past.

In conjunction with analytics, it would be beneficial to conduct some A/B tests on your website. A/B tests are the practices of comparing conversion and other “success” metrics before and after making changes to a website. Instapage has a wonderful, in depth guide on the practice of A/B Testing, which every site owner or webmaster should read. However, to shortly and practically demonstrate how an A/B test might work, imagine changing the color scheme on your page, or at least the call-to-action buttons (“Buy now!”, “Read More!”). An A/B Test would inform you which colors entice people to further explore on your website, or buy from you.
Combine the best research techniques

Combining the Two for an Ultimate Branding Information Hub

Traditional market research is not defunct and primary and secondary information is still valuable and used often. It is crucial to understand that even with the entrance of the digital age, everything we did previously is still important. They are just simply not the only or even the absolute sources of market information.

So at the end of the day, don’t waste time relying too much on one method or another. Make sure your pool of information is well-rounded and takes all relevant information into account. Learn the most about your target market as you can, and you will have the best chance of appealing your brand to all of them.

Have you found the combination of these market research methods to be helpful for your brand? Did you learn something from your social media analyses that your focus groups and interviews didn’t tell you, or vice versa? Do tell in the comments!

Digital Branding

4 Ways to Improve Your Web Design So You Connect With Your Audience

For any business, a website plays an increasingly important role in nurturing relationships and connecting with the intended audience. It is the face of your business which helps in making a lasting impression, resulting in improved sales and business. Similarly, a poorly designed website can translate into a loss of business due to poor engagement, recognition and recall.
Thereby, the need of a professional look and engaging website is greater than ever. With cut throat competition in the digital space, your professionally designed website can help foster relations with your audience.

Characteristics of a Professionally Designed Website

Your website is an important marketing tool, allowing you to promote your business. Thus, it is extremely important to strike a balance and make it visually appealing, user friendly and functional.
A strategically designed website makes use of attractive colours, easy navigation, responsive layout, content and visual elements that allow users to lure potential clientele. However, many businesses struggle with getting all these aspect in perfect synchrony. Thereby, here are a few ways through which you can improve your web design and connect with your intended audience.

1. Plan Smartly

If you have decided to build your website, you have already made an important decision that will help your business grow. However, the next important step is to plan smartly.
Planning your web design will ensure a visually appealing and responsive site. Before you actually translate your vision into reality, start working on the sitemap. It is a wise idea to see competitors and seek inspiration. However, coming up with a unique and interesting website is the goal of the exercise.

Once you have decided the template you would follow, the next step is to ponder on the flow of content and overall usability of the site. Your primary aim is to facilitate the visitor’s experience and make it easier for them to navigate across the platform.

2. Work with a Web Design Agency

Once you have a plan in mind, the next step is to take action. The planning phase is a comprehensive exercise to help you gauge the type of website you require. Once you have successfully done that, you will need the help of a professional web design agency.

Hiring a professional web design company will make it easier for you to design a website. Such a company will work alongside your business, translating your vision into reality. Moreover, working with professionals who have in-depth experience in web designing can allow you to experiment and come up with a design that stands out.

If you’re in search of reputable web designers in the UK, you may want to look at the services offered by the web design Manchester agency Design by Day. They’ve worked with the NHS and Manchester City FC and are highly recommended. You can explore their web design services here: https://www.designbyday.co.uk/.

3. Responsive Web Design

Once you have designed your website, the next thing to look at is its responsiveness. The primary goal of any business website is to engage the audience. Thereby, having a website that is responsive on mobile and other devices can bolster engagement.

Those businesses that work on the responsiveness of their website reap greater rewards with improved visitor and conversion rates. According to Google, websites that are not mobile responsive are likely to suffer from poor search rankings.
Responsiveness is one of the primary elements of a professional website. This way, you will not only get a website that looks great but is also easy to navigate and browse on different platforms and devices.

4. Digital marketing

It is important to make your website design search engine and social media optimised to reach a broader audience. To do so, you will be required to extend your reach beyond a web designer and look into Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) and Social Media Optimisation (SMO).

SEO and SMO are important aspects of digital marketing that focuses on creating high-quality content. Your digital marketing can help you create a buzz amidst the clutter. Thereby, it is important for you to come up with a comprehensive digital media strategy to rank better on search engines and social media platforms. The primary goal is to direct people to your website which is not possible without effective and strategic digital marketing.

Bottom Line

A good and professional website design is integral for the success of your website. If your web design is attractive, you will easily be able to engage your intended audience by providing them with a pleasant and enchanting experience.

Quality design leads to a higher recognition and recall, allowing visitors to revert back when needed. By improving your website design, you can give your business a substantial boost by opening newer horizons of growth.

Let social media aid your job search
Digital Branding

How to Use Social Media to Promote Yourself for Potential Employers

Social media is now an integral part of our lives. From marketing to job hunting, everything is based around social media in this contemporary era. While you use social media for entertainment and many other purposes, you can also leverage it to promote yourself for potential employers.

As per Brighton UK, almost 91% of employers admitted that they screen prospective employees via social media.

Potential employers usually skim through prospective employees’ social media presences to get to know everything about them before hiring them.

Here’s a guide that’ll assist you with branding and marketing yourself over social media.

Stay connected iwth social media

Stay Connected with the Industry

It is essential to learn about the dynamics and developments in your industry and social media is the best way to keep yourself updated about any developments related to your trade.

Also, you should follow the organizations and bodies in the industry of your trade.

Strengthen your Social Media Presence

To promote yourself in the best possible manner, you should strengthen your presence on the most noticeable social networks including Facebook and Twitter. You should create a decent page for yourself and get it verified from the respective authorities if possible.

Moreover, another handy platform to stay connected with your professional circle and promote yourself to potential employers in LinkedIn. You can make your CV available over there, build your network and follow the industry expert to keep up with everything.

Promote via Facebook

Facebook is the largest social networking platform out there with over 1.94 million monthly active users. The social network is a great platform to market yourself and promote yourself for potential employers. You can create, develop, and join professional circles over Facebook.

Promote via Twitter

Twitter is among the largest social networks. The reason why twitter would help you promote yourself to potential employers is that it hosts a highly engaged and an extremely active community. Moreover, the presence of professionals on twitter is also higher compared to any other social networks. Not only can you follow the most influential players in your industry, but can also promote yourself via influential, inspiring and informative tweets

Promote via Instagram

Instagram has been growing at an overwhelming rate over the past few years and has emerged as a marketing platform. Considering the dynamics of this social networking platform, it has now become an extremely effective platform for marketing and promoting your brand or even yourself.

Instagram is a great platform for personal branding. You can grow your Instagram and strengthen your professional profile to possibly promote yourself for potential employers.

Let your personality shine through on social medial

Manifest your Personality

Emotional intelligence is becoming an important and widely popular concept. As the concept of EI is considered more and more important while interviewing and hiring candidates, potential employers tend to check your emotional intelligence via your personality, interests, and habits. This makes it important to promote your personal interests and personality traits on social media, for potential employers.

Personal Branding

Branding yourself is perhaps that best way to exhibit your worth to the public and increase PR. You can establish your image as a leading player in your industry through effective branding. You can buy an inexpensive domain to create your own personal website, where you can manage a blog and provide information related to your trade.

Managing a blog is actually a great idea to market yourself on higher levels, making it easier for potential employers to notice you. You can use your blog to highlight your skills, experience, and abilities.

This will increase your credibility in front of potential employers.

Use Professional Email Signatures

Using professional email signatures is a great way for professionals and corporate firm to brand themselves via emails. These modern email signatures are almost electronic business cards. You can add brief information about yourself and your profession in your e-mail signatures. This way, you can promote yourself for potential employers.

In the contemporary era, an email signature is a part of your corporate identity. To market yourself and brand yourself in the most effective manner, you can design a professionally carved, brief yet informative email signature and attach it to all relevant emails.

For more information, click here.

Digital Branding

The Morning Routine Of Successful Professionals

Do you catch the worm or chill away in the mornings?

Due to the nature of most jobs and the obvious challenges that come with them (regardless if working from home or from the office), it seems everyone has a steady morning routine they follow.

But, not all of them are honing down on their routines to make them successful.

That’s why we are sharing how some very successful professionals are setting up their mornings for success.

You will see how these professionals get into the “zone”. These are habits that they incorporate and they work for them. You just might find that they will work for you too. Read through them. Tweak them and twists them. Make your own, unique routines. Create methods that get your creative juices flowing and then do them every day.

Every weekday morning I take a time out while I’m getting ready to drink my coffee. For just 10-15 minutes I enjoy that delicious cup of caffeine and catch up on the news with some morning newsletters, like the “New York Times Morning Briefing” and “Need to Know”. It’s a little me time before the rush of the workday!

Each morning I take a moment to remind myself that today is a brand new beginning. Whatever did or didn’t happen yesterday, last week, or last month is irrelevant — these next 24 hours are mine to create. So often throughout our lives, we wish we could press a do-over button, yet fail to recognize that each sunrise is life’s natural reset button, providing a fresh start to live the life we want.

My morning routine is often a juggle between getting my 3 girls ready for school and tackling a few client tasks before we head out to the bus stop. That just means my mornings are a tad crazy. I will usually schedule social media content or paste a blog post in some of the Facebook blogger support groups I’m in. I do NOT check email first thing in the morning; I save that for after school drop-off.

I start my day by trying to sleep for as long as possible to keep my 18th-month-old son sleeping. I then get up and change his diaper and get him cleaned up and clothed for the day. We then go downstairs and proceed to feed him the food my wife has prepared. We then play a little bit. After that, I try to respond to emails from parents from the studio and do studio business. We start teaching at around 3:30 pm most evenings. We finish lessons at 8:45 pm. That is a typical day for me.

If there’s one good thing I’ve picked up ever since I joined my husband in his military lifestyle, that is definitely being as much of an early bird as one can be. I wake up at 5:00 sharp and start my day with some stretching. Having a toddler, and carrying him in my arms all the time requires I also exercize and keep my back strong. After that, my day – followed with a cup of coffee and light breakfast – can start. My kids get up and we start to tackle every day as is.

  • Lindsay Burton  of Youngbway.com explains that sometimes a slow start is best:

I’m awful at getting out of bed after the first alarm so I usually lay in bed checking my emails and scrolling through Young Broadway’s and Kids on Tour’s social media feeds. We’re mainly a news website so I try to check first thing if news broke while I was sleeping. Then once I’m a little bit more awake I get dressed, do my hair and makeup, eat breakfast, then immediately start my work day with gathering articles, photos, and videos to post.

  • Sania Siddiqui of allthingsgud.com proves that some people go against the trends:

My day starts will a shrill alarm just when the sun is about to peep out. Involuntarily, I pick my phone. Yes, I am guilty of checking the notifications first thing in the morning while my eyes are still trying to adjust the focus of ‘light and life’! I know this is not healthy and fair but so are many other things in life. Five minutes later, I become this multitasker, superwoman with magical powers to finish off umpteen chores within an unrealistic time window of 35 minutes before I send my daughter off to school. A brisk walk of five km and I come back famished. Time for a hearty breakfast and to get ready for work!

Get outside! Morning sunlight will give your daytime energy a boost (and help you fall asleep at night). Not only does it balance your circadian rhythms (a body’s natural cycle impacted by many things from hormones to proteins to the rise and fall of the sun) but exposure to sunlight prevents melatonin release, which is what tells us to “go to sleep!”. So whether you check emails, enjoy coffee, work in the garden, take a run, read a book or sit in meditation be sure to do it outdoors. Get outside daily, as soon as the sun is up, and you’ll experience more energy and clarity throughout your life.

A key element of my morning routine is to have my phone programmed to avoid interruptions –no emails, no texts, basically, airplane mode — for the first hour I am awake. This little bit of uninterrupted “space” allows me to think through my day or get ideas without being bogged down by work before I’m even out of bed.  I also enjoy using that time to connect with my family without immediately jumping into texts, emails and being disconnected from real life.

I’m at my most productive in the morning so I tend to hop out of bed early, get dressed and do hours work before breakfast. That way I already feel like I’ve broken the back of my work and can relax with a rush-free breakfast of soaked oats and a cup of tea. I like to browse through social media at this point and connect with my friends before taking a spiced tea up to my office and start tackling my emails. The rest of the morning passes in a blur of blog posts, content writing, and photo editing and it’s often 2 pm before I start thinking about lunch – and only then because my cats remind me that they want to feed too!

As soon as I get up, I start the mighty ritual of making coffee. I usually drink bulletproof coffee in the morning, then sit down to meditate for 10-15 mins. This helps me to settle my thoughts and wrap my head around the day. Then, I start journaling. My journal is not for being productive or anything like that – it’s a great therapy and helps me to unwind. Sometimes it makes me aware of an underlying issue that has bothered me and kept me back from being productive.

“I’m an early morning dude. Not by any virtue or discipline. That’s just my nature. So I like to stack my meetings as early as possible starting around 6 am. However, my best mornings are the ones I carve out the first 45 minutes or hour to write on the next thing that’s due. No social. No email. No distractions. Just writing. Starting my work day like that sets a powerful tone and I get a lot more done.”

We normally kick off the day with an espresso, we are big fans and I am not sure how we could live without it! We then go on to see all the submissions that are sent to us throughout the world and play them live, and look out for the gems! We then plan out our day engage our writing teams to get the reviews up on the site and push out as much content from unsigned artists as we can. We then touch base with our clients and start planning campaigns for that day! If you want to know more about us please check us out www.anrfactory.com

May day starts with some morning affection from my two cats with some coffee, on days I have the boys we make breakfast together and get ready for school, upon returning I generally re-heat my coffee and sit in my black chair beginning the day making Dance Attack happen with our events answering and sending out needed emails! generally hit the gym around 11 and return to continue on my day of building Dance Attack, until its time to get the boys from school!
I am most productive in the early AM. Around 4:30AM when everything is quiet I can get more work done in 30 minutes than I can for the rest of the day.
My morning routine is so important to me! I just feel a little bit off all day if it doesn’t happen. I love waking up early, drinking coffee with my husband, spending time in prayer, getting myself ready for work, and eating a healthy breakfast before getting my kids up and ready. My quiet mornings are often the most treasured hours of my day!

Never expect the routine to go perfectly. It’s not about perfection, it’s about showing up.

“With a toddler and a 3rd grader, getting them out the door so my older one can make the bus in time is often challenging. To save time in the morning, I’ll ask my oldest daughter to pick out her outfit the night before. With my youngest daughter who’s filled with toddler on-the-go energy, I sometimes have her even sleep in her next day’s clothes if I know we have to be somewhere extra early. We’ll eat a simple breakfast, and then the girls do ‘The Routine’: wash their faces, brush their teeth, and go to the bathroom if they haven’t already done so. Then it’s out the door to the bus stop. Mission accomplished!”

 

“5 AM Large Fresh brewed espresso lightly sweetened splash of heavy cream, mobile device, and ready to peer into what the world is up to today”

Mornings should be for snuggles, big breakfasts, and hot coffee. Instead, they end up with me running around like a lunatic, screaming at everyone to get dressed in a timely manner, jamming whatever I can find for breakfast down my family’s throats and hot coffee (hmm – yeah right, try ice cold coffee!) I am trying extra hard to prepare at night for the next morning. That really is key. It seems so simple but what joy it brings.

My mornings usually start at 5 AM very first thing is to get the day started and enjoy a large fresh brewed iced espresso lightly sweetened with a splash of heavy cream. Then while enjoying my drink grab my mobile device, and I am ready to peer into what the world is up to while I slept.  With the internet and social media so much happens and can be quickly ascertained.  I usually spend about an hour to an hour and a half reading through the internet, emails and social media to get my daily schedule lined up being in a  global network, as well I am mindful of time frames in different parts of the world to be sure I reach a global audience. From there I am ready to take Oliver, my Jack Russel for a nice morning walk usually about a mile or 2, this time is helpful to organize with a clear mind. Once done walking with my dog then I am ready to dig in and get into what kind of action sports news is to be delivered, whether it being news, video, featured or highlights.

“As a mom to a school-aged child and two under two, I find that teaching my oldest son responsibility is key for a smooth morning.  The night before we discuss what we are doing the next day.  I set his alarm, we pick out clothes to wear for the next day.  Then in the morning he wakes up to his alarm, gets dressed and brushes his teeth on his own.  I get myself and the babies ready for the day and we all meet in the dining room for breakfast.  I am very proud of my oldest son that he is able to do this and it helps my morning run very smooth knowing he is able to handle this part of getting ready on his own.”

“I get up about an hour before everyone else does.  That way I can have my coffee, catch up on the news or any school delays and get breakfast prepped for my husband and my oldest.  After they head out to school and work, I then work in my planner and plan out the goals/plans for the day.  I should say at least plan what I’d LIKE to get done that day.  By then my youngest is up and I get her breakfast together and get her ready to go to school.  I find if I sleep in those extra 30/60 minutes and get up when they do, my day is out of whack.”

“Although I am not a morning person, the most crucial part of my morning routine is to take a moment and give my kids a big loving squeeze before I send them off to school. Nothing makes kids happier and healthier than getting a boost of affection from their parents to start their day.”

“My alarm clock goes off at 5:30 and I snooze about 3 times to make sure I don’t fall back to sleep while saying my prayers. My children’s nanny rings the doorbell by 6 and if there’s a power cut she bangs on the door real hard. It’s time to get up. My husband gets the door for the nanny while I jump in the shower. Soon I hear the children screaming blue murder because they don’t like brushing their teeth. She’s good with them so I can concentrate on applying my “war paint”. Someone doesn’t want to eat. Someone didn’t finish their homework the night before. We’re late because I had to change my blouse again. Shoo, shoo, everyone out the door. Kisses to hubby who’s stretching out in front of his computer since he owns his business. I pull out of the gates and park right in the middle of the street because that’s where the traffic starts. It’s slow going from there till I drop off the boys and run right back into traffic on my way to work. Just a typical morning in Lagos.”

I always start my day with a written plan. There’s something “magical” about the pen meeting the paper. It creates a mental contract on which my mind focuses intently on fulfilling.
Digital Branding

Six Ways Hiring a Business Coach Can Take your Company to the Next Level

When running your own business, it is important to take advantage of every resource available to you. Business coaching is a tool that can help you run your company at a much higher level. From your top level executives down to your lower level employees, business coaches can help your organization run much more smoothly. Here are six ways hiring a business coach can take your company to the next level. 

Business coaches can help you go outside your comfort zone 

Some entrepreneurs need help expanding themselves and their personalities. Online business owners can be especially introverted due to their lack of face to face communications. This can be very detrimental to a career as a business owner. However, a business coach can help you learn communication skills that can take your personality and business to a whole new level. The Everest Academy is a great example of a team of coaching professionals that can help you get out of your comfort zone

Have someone to be accountable to 

If you have ever tried to stick to a workout routine or diet, you will know that it is much easier to stay consistent when you have someone to stay accountable to. A business coach will act as an individual who will keep you accountable during your pathway to business success. They will help you set captivating goals and check on your progress toward those goals. 

Develop more self-confidence 

As a business owner, your self-confidence is key. You will not be able to take the proper action if you are not confident in your business. Business coaches train in the art of teaching self-confidence to their clients. 

Find someone who isn’t afraid of calling you out

There are many times that you can be operating inside of a bubble as a business owner. None of your employees will want to tell you that your ideas are bad. Your friends who look up to you as an entrepreneur may always be praising your new ideas simply because they admire the fact that you run your own company. A business coach will be able to tell you if an idea is a good or bad one. They will call you out on your mistakes and help you fix them. It is good to have someone on your team who will actually give you constructive criticism. 

Increase your productivity 

A business coach will be able to help you determine where you are wasting your time. This will be key to increasing your productivity. Everyone only has a certain time during the day in which they can get their work done. If you are effectively using this time, you will be much more productive with the growth of your business. 

Finally, increase your revenues, profits, and income 

After working with a business coach for an extended period of time, you will see that your revenues, profits, and income will increase. This will help you feel more accomplished in your business and make the expansions that you need.

social media management
Digital Branding

How to Keep Your Blog Active When Disconnected from the Internet

You work hard. You work long hours and you pour your heart and soul into your blog. There are times, however, when you just need to take a break from the internet. Whether you are moving and won’t have internet service set up for a period of time, or whether you’ve decided to take that well-earned vacation, you need to have the systems set up so that your blog stays active even when you are disconnected from the internet.

The key to keeping your blog active when you will be disconnected from the internet is automation. Before you disconnect from the internet, you need to take the time to set up the systems that your blog needs to remain active whilst you are not on the internet. Most of the tools you need to stay active are available to you for little or no cost, so there is no excuse for your blog to be inactive just because you are disconnected from the internet.

 

Schedule Your Emails

You are growing your email list, right? It can be difficult to see a return on the time you spend on social media, due to your social media following mainly consisting of family and friends. For every $1 spent, email marketing supposedly generates $38 in return. On the other hand, less than half of marketers agree that social media gives them any return on investment at all.” This is why people are noticing the importance of building a following over emails.

Many people are now using high converting plugins that have a range of tools helping them to build their customers and email lists, and I would strongly advise you to join them! A great plugin available is Optinmonster, they have a range of features from polite scroll boxes to mobile specific pop-ups that focus entirely on attracting more visitors, turning them into loyal customers.

All major email service providers have automation or scheduling capabilities. Spend some time before you disconnect to plan out the content of your emails and get them scheduled. Make sure your readers see you in their inbox regularly, even if you aren’t there hitting “send” each time.

 

Schedule Your Posts

Consistency in blogging is the key to increasing your traffic and growing your following. Just because you are taking a well-deserved and hard-earned break from the internet doesn’t mean that your blog should go silent.

Take some time before your break to plan out and write your content. Create your graphics and schedule your posts to go live as they normally would if you were there at your computer. WordPress offers you the ability to write and format your posts ahead of time, and then schedule your posts to go live for a particular day and time. Take advantage of this function to maintain your posting consistency.

best-tech-blogs

Keep creating content and make sure to maintain your consistency. Taking even a short period of time off, whether you let your readers know ahead of time or not, will hurt your traffic.

 

Schedule Your Social Media Shares and Posts

As you are creating new content, you should be taking the opportunity to share those new posts across your social media channels. But do you often remember to share your older posts as well? With hundreds of millions of tweets being sent in a day and Facebook algorithms that are showing your posts to fewer and fewer people, it is unlikely that the majority of your followers saw that time you originally shared your new blog post.

Share your older blog posts repeatedly across your social media accounts. You have new followers who haven’t had a chance to see that particular part of your content yet. You never know which of your posts will speak to a group of your readers and will get shared over and over. Do not limit your chances of a viral post by only sharing your blog posts once or twice across social media.

blogging

If you are growing a community or working on increasing your visibility across social media, make sure to schedule your posts there as well. While announcing to your community that you will be disconnected is important, you can still maintain your presence online by pre-scheduling posts. Use free tools like Hootsuite or Buffer to schedule posts to your blog’s business page and any groups that you have started or manage.

If one of the ways you drive traffic to your blog is through share threads on social media, consider hiring a virtual assistant to handle those threads while you are disconnected. Your virtual assistant will be able to share your posts across different Facebook groups and will be able to properly reciprocate on your behalf, allowing your traffic to continue being directed to your blog.

Set up an Auto-Responder

You do not need to be spending time worried about your inbox while you are disconnected from the internet. Take a moment to set up an auto-responder that tells your readers who reach out to you that you will be away from the internet for a set amount of time and that you will address their questions or concerns when you get back.

 

Taking time off to disconnect does not need to be detrimental to your blog. Make the time before you disconnect to put systems into place that will allow you to remain active and show up consistently even when you are not at your computer. This will help your blog to grow even when you are unable to work on it direct

SEO strategies
Digital Branding

7 Basic SEO Rules You Can’t Afford to Forget

Search engine optimization is not as simple as it used to be a few years ago. However, one thing that has remained a constant throughout is valuable user experience. All search engines focus on providing high quality, useful and practical content to users. For big-money marketing, the focus of your SEO strategies should be entirely upon providing a worthy user experience, which is why you always need to keep upgrading your SEO techniques.

No matter how much you drill modern SEO techniques into your business practices, there is always room for improvement. If you’re completely clueless about where to start with SEO, this quick tutorial by Codeless should be able to put you in the right direction. When applying advanced SEO rules, there is a need to ensure that you do not skip some basic rules, including the following.

1.  Relevancy

Search engines demand relevant content from you. Initially, keywords were used to showcase relevancy to Google crawlers. However, Google algorithms have become more intelligent now. These crawlers not only check the keywords’ relevancy with the topic, but they also check the relevancy of one keyword with others before optimizing your content.

Google and other search engine optimize strictly niche-based content only. For example, orange is a fruit and a clothing line as well. Crawlers compare the keyword ‘orange’ with other keywords in the content to optimize it for an audience looking for clothes or fruit. Audience and niche relevant SEO strategy is the key to optimizing your content.

2. Site Speed

Site speed and bounce rates have always worked parallel to each other for optimizing your content. Fast loading speed of your site retains user interest and reduces the bounce rate. Google introduced Mobilegeddon to optimize mobile-friendly websites and prioritize these websites over others for SERPs.

Accelerated Mobile Page is another project of Google and Twitter, purposed to make fast mobile-friendly web pages. It is a condensed form of HTML used for developing web pages that are fast loading – the key purpose is to reduce the loading speed of a web page. Considering these facts, you cannot afford to ignore the speed of your web pages on any platforms, including desktop, laptop, mobile and tablets.

3. Internal Linking

Google has tightened its rules for external linking for white hat SEO. However, there is still some leeway when it comes to internal linking. Once you improve the site speed and reduce loading time to 2 seconds or less, the next step is to engage visitors.

Internal linking not only engages the visitors and keeps them on your website for a longer time, but also improves your site rankings. This is because it provides visitors with relevant reading options and increases optimization opportunities for your primary keywords. Also, it allows Google crawlers to fetch more information from your website and deem the content as trustworthy.

4. H1 Tags

During early SEO years, search engines started the research process from H1 tags. This process is still in effect. Although search engines crawlers use semantic indexing techniques to fetch content from your web pages, they still start from H1 tags. This simply means that to optimize your content, you should always start from a well-crafted H1 tag.

5. Consistency

If the bounce rate of a website equals the number of visitors arriving at your landing pages, Google crawlers automatically decrease your rankings. Similarly, if you update your web pages once in a blue moon, your web pages will be blacklisted after some time. Google translates consistency as an effort to keep your visitors updated, and counts it as a positive SEO practice.

seo-practices-for-your-website

6.  Backlinking

We have always been told that the number of links on your website is equal to its rank on SERPs. Links can help build audience interest. However, if you put too many backlinks in your content, the audience may lose interest, resulting in increased bounce rate. Similarly, missing out on an important link can lead to reduced visitors. The right balance of quality and informative links in your content is necessary.

Let’s use CareerCrawlers.com as an example. If the webmaster wanted to rank better in Google for keywords related to CNA testing, an example anchor text to use is “CNA Practice Tests“. You want to be careful not to reuse the anchor text over and over again however. Natural backlink profiles mean highly varied anchor text.

7. Size of Content

Around five years ago, Google considered a 300-word document long enough for optimizing your website. Today, semantic indexing techniques of SEO require longer copies to evaluate the quality of your content. The size of your content matters even if you dislike SEO rules, you cannot optimize your website without following them. Therefore, posts of around 800-word posts are necessary for making your content eligible for optimizing on SERPs.

Needless to say, it is important to ensure that you cater to all types of audiences. If your website is not optimized for mobile audiences, this is the right time to make it mobile-friendly.

brand-name
Digital Branding

Powerful Ways To Create A Brand Name That Really Thrives In A Competitive Industry

 

While the term ‘brand’ conjures up plenty of marketing-speak, let’s keep things simple by defining branding as it is → your brand is what tells your customer what to expect from you and how you’re different from the other businesses operating in the same industry.

However, branding itself is not easy. Looking at any industry, there are plenty of multi-billion-dollar businesses with near-infinite marketing budgets, and trying to build your business’s brand from scratch can seem like an impossibility. Yet, many small businesses continue to surprise us, by using clever tactics to set themselves apart.

Not every business is built with a brand new idea that’s never been executed on before. Chances are, your business has plenty of competition, and your product (or service) is just one more in a plethora of options available to your competition. Unless your brand name is strong, you’ll be lost in the crowd, and forced to compete only on price, before you eventually perish. To ensure your business stands a fighting chance, here are some tips on creating a brand name and brand that is successful.

Great Tips For Creating A Brand Name That Sells

Analyze Competitors + Keep It Simple

Before coming up with any name for your new business, it’s a good idea to first take a look at your largest competitor brand names. As an example, let’s take a look at the fast food industry. If you’re a new fast food business franchise you may have competition from:

  • McDonalds
  • Hungry Jacks
  • Red Rooster
  • Burger King

If you take a look at these names what do they all have in common? They’re simple and memorable names. Creating a new brand name should be something that’s memorable, easy to remember, and something that is one, two or three words long. Any longer than this and you risk being forgotten. Longer names tend to be hard to remember and can be tiresome to say. For example:

Mrs. Pickles Specialty Hot Pies

This could be shortened to

Mrs. Pickles Pies

As you can see the second brand name is easier to remember than the first one, thus is easier to remember for your potential customers. This is why some brands such as Ford, Toyota, Uber, Windows, Apple, and other one liners work extremely well because they’re easy to remember and they also offer great products or services as well.

Use Complimentary Wording

When using words together to create a strong brand name, it’s important to make sure they complement one another and it doesn’t feel awkward when saying the name. For example:

  • Awkward: Burger Sword
  • Complimentary: Burger King

If you look at many large brand names with multiple words, you’ll find some have one thing in common. They have a descriptive word, and a noun. Example of the fast food restaurants:

  • Hungry Jacks
  • Red Rooster

Hungry and red both are descriptive words that help to lift the noun and make it more memorable because it gives a visual picture in your customers head. When creating a brand name, depending on your overall industry, try to put nouns and descriptive words (adjectives) together and see what you can come up with that may help envision your dream business name.

Make Sure It Looks Good On Paper

Before finalizing your brand name, you also need to make sure it looks good on paper and as a domain name online. The idea of this is because it will be seen and printed many times, and it needs to look good with the initial design and layout. When considering the design and layout here’s some things to remember:

  • Use simple drawings and colours to help create a more memorable brand logo. Complex logos aren’t as memorable as the single word or simple drawing designs.
  • Make sure the brand name looks good if you wrapped it around merchandise or promotional products. While you may not start out with promotional products, you still need to make sure it looks good for future reference.
  • Will it look good on different media mediums: Eg: billboards, flyers, magazines, webpage etc.

Sounding good and looking good on paper are two separate things. This is why it’s so important to really draw out some logo design options to make sure you can create a name and design that will be remembered years from now.

3 Power Steps For Brand Success

Laying The Foundation

In order to build a brand after the name has been decided that not only finds its way to the top of your target audience’s minds, but also increases your bottom-line while keeping the competition at bay, you must remember that your brand is not just about your logo. Or what a nice office space you have. Or even how awesome your website is. In order to get started on building your brand’s presence in a competitive industry, you must have a clear understanding of your:

  • Brand – What is/are your product/services, organizational values, vision and mission?
  • Target Audience – Know your target market inside and out. In fact, the more information you have, the better. We might even suggest that you build a ‘customer persona’ so you know exactly whom you’re targeting.
  • Competition – What are they offering? How are they differentiating themselves? What are their marketing strategies? Again, be as thorough as possible with your research.

Once you have the above information, you’re in a strong position to start building a brand strategy. Remember, as simple and obvious as the above seems, many businesses skip this step in a hurry to get with the ‘shiny’ aspects of marketing.

Define Your Brand

The moment you try to be everything for everyone, you’ve lost the game. Using the information, you collected in the above step, you will have a clear idea of where your business stands, strengths, weaknesses and plenty of competitor-related information. Now it is time to take the following steps and clearly define your brand:

brand image

What are the one (or two) things you want your brand to be known for (e.g. Google – Search, Uber – convenient transport). This will also be your unique selling point. It can be awesome customer service (e.g. Zappos) or a revolutionary addition to an existing product

  • How will the above help you differentiate your brand from those of your competition?
  • What qualities and feelings do you want your customers to have when they think of your brand?

Marketing Communications

Now that you’ve built a solid foundation, it’s time to put pen to paper and get to work on the “face” of your business. Don’t hold back. Let your creative juices flow. Remember, no brand stands out by being conservative. Look at your competition and identify ways in which you can differentiate your brand. Now, it’s time to work on your logo and other marketing collaterals:

  • What colors do you wish to use, that will help show off the personality of your brand while also differentiating yourself from competing brands?
  • Design a memorable logo and keep in mind that you will be using it everywhere. So, try to minimize or eliminate complex designs.
  • Establish brand guidelines so that all your communications will be consistent with your branding
  • Design your website in line with your logo and brand colors
  • Ensure all your marketing material such as social media profiles, leaflets, advertising etc. are consistent with your brand

Many businesses jump to this step directly. Step 3 is only as strong as the effort you put into Steps 1 and 2.

Conclusion

The above steps will help you get started in the branding game and build a solid foundation based on which you can launch your marketing efforts. If you look at any industry, the brands that are killing it and truly setting themselves apart from the competition are the ones who have done their homework on their market, product offering and competition. They understand that a brand goes way beyond a sleek logo and flashy website.

What challenges have you faced when trying to differentiate your business from your competition?


Bill Sheikh – Owner/Founder

I am the founder of U-Thrive Marketing. U-Thrive Marketing is one of the premier online marketing and website design firms in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Myself and my company have helped hundreds of companies across the US put their business on the map online and offline. I specialize in generating customers for the businesses I work with by utilizing proven online marketing tactics such as SEO, PPC & Social Media. I have been personally featured on many national and local publications with features and articles related to online marketing.