How Guest Blogging Can Grow Your Brand

by Kyle Blasco

For all the aspiring or current blog writers out there looking to expand their audience and web presence, look no further than guest blogging.

Guest blogging carries both good and bad connotations. Guest blogging enables you to build an audience around your brand, establish new connections in and out of your niche, and earn links back to your site (for SEO.)

However, guest blogging has also brought low-quality spam content, which rots all over the web. Of course, it doesn’t have to be this way. It’s possible to produce high-quality content and benefit from posting it on a website that is not your own.

In this article, I will highlight the key strategies that will make guest blogging worth your time.

Be Methodical in Your Research

We all want to get out there and take action immediately, but that may not be the best idea with guest blogging. First, take time to research which blogs may be a good idea to contribute to. You want to target something with a decent audience. Don’t stress on writing for the most successful blogs on the web right away. You can work your way up with time. Any blog with a steady audience can be beneficial.

You can find websites by simply typing a variety of queries related to guest blogging and posting along with a broad keyword relevant to your topic. You can also use more advanced features like Google Reader and actually search for blogs by name or topic area. This will show you the stats of the blog, such as subscriber count and the number of posts a week.

Google Reader is helpful in filtering-out blogs with little audience reach—which are a waste of your time. You also want to be aware of blogs that are littered with guest content. A solid blog should have regular writers producing most of their content, with one, maybe two guest posts a week maximum. If you find a site loaded with guest posts, it most likely is for illegitimate reasons.

Don’t be a Telemarketer with Your Intentions

Instead of just sending out emails to blog owners asking if you can guest post something on their blog, try and establish a relationship with them first. Cold-calling is hardly valued or successful in most venues on this Earth.

It’s helpful to be hanging around on whichever blogs and pages you’re targeting for a few weeks. Commenting on articles and being active with blog owners on social media is a good way to catch their eye. They’ll get to know and recognize you. So when you do ask to guest post on their blog, they won’t be so put-off by the request.

The Goal is an Audience, not simply Traffic

Traffic is traffic; you can pay for it and not necessarily be better off. The key with guest blogging is you’re already presenting yourself before the niche you seek to expand in. People reading the blog are already followers or frequent visitors of it and when they read your post they may jump over to your site for more.

If you really are producing quality stuff then there’s a chance they’ll come back and follow you too. At the least, they’re aware of you as a person in the know on whichever topic you’re writing on. Make sure, however, that your site can withstand the traffic and have something to offer the potential audience flowing to you; otherwise it’s all for nothing.

Guest blogging can dramatically improve your reputation in whichever community you’re going for, in addition to the blogging community as a whole. It’s important that the stuff you’re posting can stand alone on quality though, no matter what other goals you might have.

Cultivate your Network through Optimization

The task of becoming a larger web presence may seem daunting, but it’s achievable. Anyone who is a big-time content publisher certainly started out as a small-time one.

A critical step in guest blogging is to really know the market you’re going to post in. Specifically, the types of content the audience likes and how they like the content presented. By looking back and studying what other guest posters have done and how it was received you can optimize your content to be more successful.

And of course the more successful and well-received you are, the more the audience will gravitate toward you and your site. The goal is to go viral: shares, tweets, likes, plus ones, and RSS feed’s. Open Site Explorer is exceptional for studying what content on a particular blog has been the most successful and how it was shared.

Don’t Forget the Basics

After all the strategy, it’s easy to lose focus of the basic SEO stuff. Write naturally, but still optimize with keyword targeting. Maybe not the top keywords you’re trying to rank for on your site, but secondary keywords that are not as competitive. Research which primary keywords you’d like to go after on your site while still ranking well with the secondary keywords on your guest blogging opportunities.

You don’t need to smother your content with a bunch of links back to your own work, either. One or two will be plenty. And be creative in your bio with an anchor text that can merge with your branding. You don’t want to explicitly state your brand without crafting a nifty call-to-action to go along. So, don’t say “Matt’s guitar blog,” say something like “Matt preaches the sweet sounds of guitar here in his blog.” Take that for what it is. But my point is to make the anchor text more enticing than a simple option listing.

Prove Your Worth

And by all means don’t be a one-and-done blog poster. No relationship has ever been built off one awesome guest post. Try to be a semi-regular contributor to the blog—once or twice a month. Or, if you have a broader idea for a guest post, pitch a multiple-part series to the blog master. This will definitely increase your chances of sticking in the minds of the audience you’re writing for.

This article was written by blogger and Internet marketer Kyle Blasco. To learn more about Kyle, you can connect with Kyle on Google+.


The Social Integration of Search Engine Marketing

As time passes and social networks become more circular than ever, the thought should dawn on business operators and marketers alike that search engine optimization is becoming eerily similar to real marketing.

We all know the days of implementing as many keywords as possible into an irrelevant piece of content hoping to achieve higher rankings. Those days are gone. Now search marketing all about getting social and sharing worthwhile content with a desired audience.

People are searching in their World

We live in a great big World, but for the most part we stick to our small, personal circles. Google + holds a lot of cards in determining how a business can rank. Though not super new, Google’s Search Plus Your World remains a game changer. The feature, launched in January earlier this year, makes all the social activity on Google + directly valid in terms of search engine listings. It’s up to the user to have their search results tailored personally to them—but who wouldn’t want to be spoon-fed recommendations based around your own life?

After all, would you trust a stranger’s opinion over someone you know? When it comes to vacation recommendations, music and film buzz or the next online video sensation, you are interested in hearing from your friends and acquaintances before some random Joe on the web. Google’s Search Plus Your World is the first step in allowing users to delve deeper into their communities with one segregating click.

Profile = Business Card

Does anyone use business cards anymore? Probably short-sighted of me, I’m sure they do. However, these days what yours or your businesses online profile looks like probably reigns supreme. For major brands and operations, this step is obvious. But for the small, and/or local business owner, making sure your social network profiles are thorough and searchable is critical.

For starters, having your Google + Local page verified and optimized can do wonders for credibility to the search engines. Having a presentable picture on your profile sounds elementary, but can really grab eyes in the results page. And there’s no substitute for timeliness—if you can beat your local competitors to the chase (or Google +, social media in this matter) than the ball’s in your court. The search marketing industry is evolving back into its off-web counterpart with the dominant influence of social media platforms.

Build/Hold/Flourish Your Target Market

Whether you have a particular market you’re targeting or not, you won’t be able to hold them without fresh content. It’s verified that social signals (likes, shares, tweets, +1’s) help trigger higher rankings. Every business should be dedicated to building a following through the variety of mediums and platforms the web has to offer. I’m talking about videos, how-to guides, news blurbs, quirky blog posts, compelling articles, startling info-graphics; there is an unlimited ceiling web marketers have in projecting their unique voice onto hundreds, thousands or even millions depending on the business and the reach it has.

Quality content coming on a regular basis will hook readers whether they realize it or not. They’ll probably start following your businesses page and be fed content in the future as a result of personalized searches. The result of this system is brand awareness and customer rapport. To bring it all full-circle, the best practices of social media marketing and search engine optimization are evolving and merging. Together, they define a more unified approach that's emerging as a practice called web presence optimization.

So if you haven’t been following, joining Google + along with all the other social networks is essential for search marketing. Whether you have a local business or play a part in a massive corporation trying to appeal to a large target audience, Google + can play an integral part in both campaigns. Get connected for the sheer sake of not losing the edge to your competitor’s. Because chances are they’ll catch on sooner rather than later, leaving your business behind the curve. 

This article was produced by blogger, SEO, and web marketer Kyle Blasco. You can connect with Kyle on Google+.


Pinterest as a Marketing Tool

The New Kind of Window Shopper

Pinterest is an elite online photo sharing website, designed for people to organize and share all the things they love on a virtual pinning board. Once you join Pinterest, you have access to millions of “pins,” the images that have been posted by a user.

People use Pinterest for a number of different reasons. Some are looking to collect delicious recipes, share their favorite books, movies, music, quotes, and get great ideas for a new hairstyle or DIY project. However, one of the most common uses of Pinterest a virtual kind of window shopping.

Users seek images on the web or use their own digital photographs of clothes, furniture, art, jewelry, technology, etc. that they would love to own. Then, others who share the same passion for their style ideas can “like” the image or “re-pin” it onto their own board with the simple click of a button. Instantly, a limitless amount of images are available to millions of potential clients.

A Sneezer’s Dream Come True!

So, what makes this important to manufacturers’ and sellers’ marketing strategies? First off, it’s free publicity. It wouldn’t cost a thing, but someone’s time, to open up a Pinterest account for the manufacturer/store; or simply install Pinterest’s “Pin-it!” button on an already existing website. This way, sneezers can easily share products with everyone they know. Yeah, remember what sneezers are? Sneezers are people that live to recommend your products to others? Pinterest is full of them!

Even better, Pinterest, being an upcoming social media site, has aligned itself with other wildly successful forms of social media—Facebook and Twitter! Now, if a “Pinner” so chooses, they may connect their Pinterest account to one or more of their other accounts, meaning optimum exposure for anything and everything they “pin.” So, not only are these images going out to the millions of Pinterest users, but the billions of international “Facebookers” and “Tweeters.”

What Brand is this?

Manufacturers and stores also need to be involved to maintain their branding. So many images on Pinterest have no link back to their original websites, no logos, and no pricing. The more the original supplier and/or original users of these images are involved, the more likely an image will lead back to its brand. In addition, with a Pinterest account, a manufacturer or store can track the amount of times the image of a particular item is “re-pinned” by users. This could be a great way to tell what people are actually interested in or at least dreaming about buying.

When Window Shoppers Decide to Take a Step Inside

Another key point to make about Pinterest’s marketing abilities is that it’s not so much about making a sale as it is getting the look or style out there. Pinterest is about building inspiration, promoting new trends, getting a look at what’s in right now. Sales may come when a really interested “Pinner” clicks on the image to be instantly transported to the seller’s website, but only if someone makes sure they can get there!

This blog post was contributed by Aubrie Parth. Connect with Aubrie on Google+.


Why Google+ is a Must for Small Businesses

 Many entrepreneurs are inquisitive to know whether Google+ can help them. Some of them feel already successful after using Twitter and Facebook hence they don’t see the need for a third social platform. The failures experienced while using Google in the past is among the reasons business owners are still raising questions even after the launch of Google+.

Well, the truth is Google is the leading search engine that is now integrating Google+ social activity with Google Search. Although Facebook has made a name as a social networking company, Google is establishing what some people think is an arduous alternative for small businesses. Below are just some of the cues to get you inspired:

  • The Social Factors are Huge – Google is devoted to being social since it understands social sites generate greater traffic. You will start to see several integration pages among the search results. This trend of building loyalty in the social sense for those using Google+ can easily gain traction with time. 
  • The Inbound Web Traffic is Free – Google has an enormous SEO value. Creating a profile on Google+ will give you an inbound link to the site represented by the page. This will even work better when you connect your website with your page on Google+.
  • The Creative Process is Simple – Creating pages on Google+ is easy. Although not mandatory, it is essential to have an image, avatar or logo that represents your own brand when creating a page. It's also wise to write a solid "About" section that describes what your small business does

You may be asking what you need to do in using the Google+ pages for the success of your business. Here are three main ideas to help you:

1. Build devoted and loyal traffic: Share on your pages in social media platforms that you have a new business page on Google+ and invite your friends to circle you and get updates. You can also mail your clients inviting them to get to Google+ and circle you. You can segment your followers using the circles on Google+.

2. Collaborate with others: While on Google+ page, it is possible to send links, updates and photos as well as work in conjunction with other users on this site. Other people will be required to circle your own page so as to let you comment on the thread updates. As you keep engaging in these ways, other users will include you to their own circles hence resulting to greater brand awareness.

3. Host a live video chat ("Hangout"): This feature is what makes Google an exceptional social network. The best way to work with your target market is to host a hangout then invite clients to join in. The point is to listen rather than be heard and provide helpful feedback to the users on the hangout. A few ideas can inspire you in selecting the hangout topic. These include:

  • Latest product previews hangout.
  • A hangout on the relevant tools of trade.
  • News and other industrial happenings hangout.
  • Questions answered for new customer hangout.
  • Consumer appreciation hangout.

Is your small business using Google+ yet? If not, we highly suggest getting on board soon. You business can be a local authority figure in search, so long as you optimize your Google+ page and share quality content the attracts in-market customers. To learn how to optimize your web presence on Google+ and other online channels, stay in tune with the Righteous Business Blog.


Discovering Your Ideal Customer: How to Build a Group of Passionate Fans from Nothing

Too many small businesses picture their target market to be everyone in their local proximity. This fallacy can lead to loss of focus, and potentially, a loss of business.

For small businesses and start-ups, finding and catering to your target market as soon as possible will minimize time spent lost in the dark. Without a precise target market, your business plan will be spread too thin and you won’t be able to be everything to everyone.

A good word in marketing is empathy, which is defined as the intellectual identification with or vicarious experiencing of the feelings, thoughts, or attitudes of another. Marketers need to be empathetic in order to cultivate a following of people who find value in your products and services.

Below I offer some insights to help you discover your ideal customer and overall target market.

Starting with the Smallest Market Possible

Don’t get hung up only focusing on one customer, or one message. When starting out, there’s little to hang your hat on. The key is to not spend time lost in the dark. Highlighting one aspect that makes your company valuable and then communicating that to your target market will get the ball rolling in building an audience.

Discover Why You’re Valuable

Your business plan will be successful only if the market cares about it. Defining why you’re valuable to a market and testing whether the hypothesis holds up is important in moving forward. Moving forward in business is impossible when the hypotheses don’t test well in the lab.

Desire Feedback

Small businesses and start-ups don’t have the capabilities that a thriving corporation has where they can learn a lot each day from customer interaction. Formulating and testing theories on the fly is the only option available in the early stages of implementing a business plan.

Setting up meetings with prospects who fall within your smallest market group is a good way to start finding out what’s working and what’s not. It can be hard to find the prospects, so joining industry or trade groups containing your target market is a safe start.

Offering free samples and beta test relationships to individuals willing to provide feedback is also helpful. Your business will only start to evolve when you get the message and focus out to the target you’re intending to reach.

Make a Customer Sketch

After all these plans and tests, you need to identify every last detail of your customer. Most of the information attained will not be commonly understood, and thus needs to be gathered through additional research in heavy behavioral places such as social media.

Thorough research in the social media platforms will help kick start your CRM (Customer Relationship Management) and allow you to start building custom profiles. There are several CRM platforms to assist you in your customer sketch.

Worketc, Batchbook, Nimble, Highrise and Cubesocial all provide excellent CRM tools, collecting as much customer data in one place as currently possible. These tools will help you build custom profiles with more information than you could ever capture on your own.

Never Stop Evolving

Perhaps the most important step to learn is that your business will always undergo changes to the strategy. When you discover your ideal customer you should look back at your basic business model and overall strategy. If you want to have a great business model, it needs to be customer-influenced, even customer-forced. It’s wise to think about how your perfect client will affect your offerings, revenue streams, pricing and ways of distribution.

Think of finding your market as a pivotal line in a crossword puzzle; it should help you figure out more lines to the puzzle, or strategies to the model. Game plan how you can reach your target market, potential partners and the resources you either need or have in order to reach the target market effectively.

You’re never done evolving if you want to be successful. Businesses learn and grow; their models change shape. The on-going process of experimentation and discovery is equally important to what you’re discovering.

This article was scribed by blogger, SEO, and web marketer Kyle Blasco. You can connect with Kyle on Google+.


Where will SEO be in 2013?

The World that Once was, Is, and Will Become

The generation of our grandparents has lived without the Internet, cell phones, and social media for most of their lives. The current generation, labeled the Internet or Net Generation, has been fully immersed and utterly dominated by this technology. They carry it in their purses, school bags, and in their pockets. It’s in their homes, classrooms, and cars. No one knows and understands technology better, or can use it to cultivate and share information faster than ever before. But, what’s next? As we come to understand and speak with technology more and more, does that mean we become less in touch with how to talk to and influence our own kind?

The Ways of the World Tend to Repeat Themselves

Just like the current generation, SEO has become more about speaking with computers, teaching them how to deliver information to human beings through a set of codes or list of keywords. But, like most things in this world, a shift can begin that transforms SEO back into humans reaching out and actually speaking to other humans. It’s important to learn how to become personable like our grandparents, and one of the best ways a SEO copywriter can do that is to write for readers and not for computers.

The Beginning of the Transformation

The Internet is a social place. It is a great way to deliver information at the speed of light all across the world. But not all information that travels on the web is reliable. The best way to reach people is to write quality pieces that are relevant to your audience. These pieces may also hold their integrity and last longer as people recognize their worth and share with others. The use of other social media such as blogs, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Google+, etc are important tools to be utilized as well.

SEO in 2013

Combining the strengths of years of generations, in 2013 SEO can be about this move to start speaking to one another directly again. In the future people will still be using the Internet to gain useful information and SEO copywriters can be the ones to continually deliver it to them.

This blog post was contributed by Aubrie Parth. Connect with Aubrie on Google+.


5 Tips for Google+ Socail Marketing

When it comes to social marketing, Google+ is one of the most powerful social networks that you can use. It is not only great for personal networking, but it can also work wonders for your business by connecting with like-minded consumers, vendors, and partners.

Having a business that is successful online is not simply about writing content. You should also build relationships with your target demographic. Here are some tips for Google+ social marketing;

1. Construct highly focused circles. When it comes to Google+, you connect with people through circles. To make the most of this circles-system, you'll want keep your circles organized and highly focused.

So what is a focused circle? This is a group of people who have similar interests and aspirations, whether in their personal lives or business-wise. Before including people into a particular circle, you should establish what mutual benefits and aims you have in common. By using circles, you get the opportunity to determine what your target demographic wants and figure out how best to provide it to them.

2. Sharing should be focused. Emphasis is being put into the word focused since this is pertinent when it comes to online marketing. When it comes to generating traffic for your website, it is not simply about getting all and sundry to visit your website. It is about targeting specific people that will grow your business, and not simply visit your website and not do anything about it.

Focused sharing ensures that you are reaching a targeted audience that will boost your sales. They will not only click the link to your website, but chances are they will also purchase your products, sign up for your mailing list and possibly recommend you to the people in their circles. This will not be achieved when you are only getting generic traffic to your website.

3. Search engine optimization. By using Google+, you can increase the chances of capturing greater search visibility and higher rankings. Google keeps updating its search engine algorithms and one common trend we're seeing is how Google is integrating highly relevant social activity with search. By using Google+ to promote your content, you can further increase your online visibility. In addition to this, having a Google+ account will verify that your content is more credible and valuable, depending on how popular it gets.

4. Stay up to date with the trends. One thing to note about successful online marketing is that it is dynamic and up to par. It never stays in one particular form. There are new developments, which could greatly improve on your social marketing efforts
A number of online business owners tend to have outdated content since they are not staying abreast with these trends. If you would like to increase targeted traffic and become more popular on Google+, you should know what's hot in your particular niche, and be timely to share it with your audience.

5. Contact your target audience. With Google+, you should no longer send mass updates to everyone. Instead, you can direct them specifically to the individuals that believe in your business. Your circles will act as email lists to subscribers who genuinely want additional information.

Google+ is surely a life force you'll want to join. Google+ is empowering companies in so many ways and helping new entrepreneurs grow viral in a matter of days.


14 Awesome Tools from Google, for Righteous Business People

Over the years, the products and tools that have been created by Google labs have offered many benefits for righteous businesses. However, most of these Google tools are quite underutilized despite the fact that they come at no cost (and promote exceptional efficiently).

So to enlighten the righteous business people of these great tools that Google has to offer, below we share 14 of the most popular tools for businesses.

1. Analytics: This is a solution to business owners who would like to keep track of their web traffic. By analyzing the web traffic to your site, you are better placed at creating ads for your target demographic, coming up with content that would be useful to your web traffic and more.

2. Alerts: If your type of business is dependent on staying up to date on the latest information in that particular niche, this would be the Google tool for you. All one should do is key in the topic or the keywords that you would like to keep track of, the kind of data that you would like to get ranging from news posts to blogs, videos and more, the amount of results you would prefer to receive and get all this information right in your email. This helps you keep tabs on a news story that is developing, keep track of your competitors and receive the latest scoop on any events that are happening worldwide. The price of this tool is free.

3. Groups: As the name suggests, this tool enables you to form private groups, which you decide who gets access to them. Thus, you can have one or more clients’ groups and in them contain files they can all access, organize meetings with the group members, and have a space to brainstorm and more. The price is free.

4. Picasa: This is a tool that enables you to upload, edit, and share pictures online. It is a great tool for creating slide shows about your products then you can go ahead and embed these slideshows right to your website. The price is free.

5. Voice: This tool enables you to have multiple phone numbers for your business then have the calls received by any phone no matter what device you use or which carrier you subscribe to. The price of this tool is free.

6. Real Time: This tool helps you keep track of activity real time from social networks, blogs, popular articles and more for free. This is a great tool that works well with Google+, Facebook, Twitter, as well as business blogging and article marketing,

7. Site Search: This tool enables you to use Google’s search algorithm for your own website’s search engine. The price of this ranges from $100 to $200+, depending on the number of queries that will be received annually.

8. Desktop: This tool helps you perform searches on your business computers just as you would on the web for free.

9. Directory: This tool enables you to search for anything online through comprehensive category listings thus making it easier. This tool is free.

10. Finance: This tool keeps businesses updated on all local as well as international markets with sources from the web inclusive of stock analysis and a custom portfolio creator. The price is free.

11. News: Let your business stay up to date on both local as well as global news with this tool. An added advantage is that the news pieces are broken down to various categories such as world news, business news, science and technology, and so on.

12. Calendar: This is an interactive calendar that enables a company to share as well as keep it updated with any upcoming events with the rest of the people in the company.

13. Docs: This tool is similar to having an online Microsoft office program as it enables one to create as well as share spreadsheets, word documents, slideshows ad more. The price for this is free.

14. Chart tools: This enables you to create interactive motion charts and embed them to your website for free.

So as you can see, most of these tools are free to use and promote optimal efficiency in the workplace.


How to Attract New Google+ Followers

Google+ is one of the fastest growing social networking sites on the Internet. The greatest benefit of this platform over other social networking sites is that Google+ activity can actually appear in organic search. Additionally, Google+ is emerging with more players and individual consumers, and is projected by many experts to be the next (if not replace) Facebook.

As a result, having a strong following on Google+ will only help your business and its marketing efforts. There are several ways that can help your business capture more Google+ followers. We outline many of them below.

Write and Share Posts Regularly

Writing and sharing posts regularly is important because it shows your followers you are active and can encourage recommendations. This is also an effective SEO technique, for your posts can appear in the search results on relevant keyword queries. A good way to help you post become found by new eyes (non-followers) is to use hashtags (#) in front of keywords in your post. Like Twitter, including a hashtagged keywords can prompt your posts when users search relevancy phrases (e.g. #Google_Strategies).

Make Invites 

It goes without saying that the more people you invite, the more followers you can attract. Google+ is still in its early stages of growth, so take advantage of all opportunities to invite your friends and colleagues to the network. A good place to start is the people in your Gmail account. You can further exploit invitations via other social networks like Facebook and Twitter too.

Start Following Others 

Once you have added the people you know, add the people you do not know. Follow such people as Google insiders, celebs, authors, and Google community managers to increase your chances of getting a great following. Avoid the temptation of joining everyone on such lists. Only add people who you are interested in. Talk to the people you add, comment on posts in their profiles, and +1 to the posts you like. This will endear them to you and this will increase the chances of their following you back.

Create an Attractive Google+ Profile

Ensure that people can find you easily on Google’s profile search. Also important is ensuring that people know what you are about the moment they see your profile. Go to the site’s privacy settings and turn off the parts you wish to be public. Upload a nice picture since people respond positively to images. Come up with a mini-bio describing who you are. Describe yourself with a target audience in mind. In the mini-bio, describe what you are involved in as well as your interests.

Make Your Posts Public

Making posts public leads to want maximum exposure. This is because sharing to the public means everybody on the Internet can view them. There is a great chance that your posts will go viral if you share them with the public. An alternative to this is sharing your posts with “Extended Circles”. This means your posts will be shared to all your followers and the people in their circles. The people in your followers’ circles will be able to view your posts in incoming streams.

Take Advantage of Hangouts 

Hangouts allow up to 10 people to participate in the same video chat. This feature is hugely popular and you should take advantage of it to attract followers. Use Hangouts on Air, which is available to some business pages only, to connect to like-minded persons. This ensures you have quality following, not just quantity following.

Respond to Comments

Human beings love attention and they will respond positively to you if you pay attention. Respectfully respond to comments and questions that users make on your posts. This will help establish your business reputation, in addition to showing that you truly care about your Google+ followers.

If you'd like to learn more about marketing with Google+, or take advantage of services and strategy consulting, visit web design and SEO Peoria IL company OIC Group, Inc.


SEO Tips for Real Estate Professionals

For real estate agents, as is the case with other righteous business professionals, it is important that search engine optimization (SEO) is an integral aspect to their marketing efforts. SEO can result in a high ranking in the search engine results, which can translate to more hits and consequently greater sales potential.

Although SEO employs the same concepts and strategies almost all righteous business professionals, there are always unique qualities per campaign. For real estate professionals, there are a number of components that must be included to best ensure a successful SEO strategy. Below we outline several SEO tips for real estate professionals:

Define your goals: Your SEO campaign will not be effective if you do not have clearly defined goals. Your goals should not be high Internet traffic or big commission checks, it should be such things as a particular number of monthly newsletter subscription and search registrations and increase in certain parameters over the specified period.

Adopt an editorial calendar: You could use the popular WordPress Editorial Calendar for content mapping. Your content must be fresh, interesting, and to the point if your SEO campaign is to be effective. It should be keyword optimized, but do not overdo it since search engines will notice and reduce your ranking.

Go small: Do not brand yourself as the best real estate agent in, say New York, if you are small and you are competing against thousands of other real estate agents. You will not be able to handle all the pressure from the many clients you get and you may get clients who are out of your league. Target a niche market near where you are based. Having a targeted market is also important in that you will not be lost in hundreds of thousands of search results.

Social media marketing: Take advantage of the popularity of social media marketing. Create social media profiles and link them to your website. Consider creating profiles in LiveFyre, WordPress.com, Blogger, Disqus, and Intense Debate. Linking with other relevant sites will also help your campaign since link popularity is one of the major factors that determines ranking such as Google’s PageRank or PR. Do not shy away from linking with your competitor’s sites. Another good option is linking with community-based websites.

Be willing to fail: You must go all out if you want success in your search engine optimization campaign. Do not shy away from experimenting with different SEO techniques.

Create regular content: Create quality content and post it regularly. Write about different topics, provided they are related to real estate. A good example is writing about interior decorations.

Include a call to action: Have a call to action in your website after your content in such places as article submission directories. Examples of good calls to action are “read our blog for more information”, “search for homes here”, and “learn about short sales here.”

Spit testing: Testing is crucial for success in SEO Peoria IL. The best tool for this is the WordPress Split Test Optimizer. Split tests should be done on headlines, words, locations, phrases, titles, and colors.

If you are interested in learning more about SEO and website optimization, visit WebPresenceGroup.net for articles, resources, and services.

Create an effective home search: People come to your site to search for houses; it is therefore necessary that you create an effective search. The search application should offer multiple solutions and it should be user friendly.


Is Your Local Business Righteous for Pinterest?

In its very essence, Pinterest is a socially-oriented image sharing site. This pinboard-style website allows for the creation and management of theme-based image collections like interests, events, and hobbies. You can browse the pinboards of others, re-pin images to your own collection, and like images that you may like. Pinterest was created by Paul Sciarra, Ben Silbermann, and Evan Sharp, and launched on March 2010.

Twitter and Facebook are the undoubted leaders of the social media marketing world, but consider tapping into the power of the relatively new Pinterest. Some of the greatest advantages of using Pinterest for your business, according to comScore, are:

  • Pinterest is one of the fastest growing standalone sites ever with 19 million users in March.
  • The average user spends an average of 89 minutes on Pinterest, higher than LinkedIn and Twitter and only second to Facebook.
  • You will get a targeted traffic of young females who are relationship-oriented, with the site attracting 65% women with an average age of 32 years.
  • With Pinterest, you get clearly defined interests in visual and creative categories like furniture, jewelry, clothing, and other vintage and lifestyle goods.
According to the ecommerce marketing company Shopify:

1.      The referral power of Pinterest is equal to that of Twitter at present.
2.      Shoppers who are referred from Pinterest are ten percent more likely to buy compared to those referred from other social networking websites.
3.      Pins that have prices receive 36% more likes compared to those that do not.

Notable brands like Coca-Cola, The Wall Street Journal, and Neiman-Marcus are all using Pinterest. 

It is however, important to note that not all local businesses are suitable for Pinterest. There are several tips that will help you determine if your business is on the righteous path for using Pinterest.         

What do you sell?

Businesses where visuals play a vital role in products/services will benefit from Pinterest more. A business that sells art or jewelry, one that showcases beautiful lawns or remodeled kitchens or one that prepares gourmet meals will entice customers to buy the products or services on sale through Pinterest since human beings are visual creatures. You could include product reviews, customer testimonials, past works, and other content to entice customers. On the same breath, Pinterest might not be the place for you if you are offering such services as accountancy or legal services.

What is on your Website?

You could use Pinterest to showcase the services or products you have on your website. You can include links to your website so that customers/clients who are interested in the images they see can find their way into your landing page. This is a good option since you will get targeted Web traffic. Only those who like what you are offering and who know about you will end up in your landing page. Once on your website, customers/clients can call in an order for local delivery/pick up, find their way to a nearby outlet, make an inquiry, or do online purchase in the case of an ecommerce site.

Do you primarily cater to women?

Pinterest is indeed the best place if your business primarily caters for women. As the statistics above indicate, most Pinterest users are women. This is therefore, the best place if you are involved in such businesses as women fashion and coupon code businesses.

Do you have the time and resources needed to make Pinterest successful?

It is advisable that you only use Pinterest if you are willing to dedicate reasonable time and resources to the campaign. You will be required to update content regularly for a high ranking in SERPs (search engine results pages) and you will be required to engage with other users on a daily basis (or on near-daily basis). For success in your Pinterest campaign, you will be required to complement the Pinterest campaign with other social media and other Internet marketing campaigns such as affiliate marketing and email marketing.

Are you targeting an international audience?

Using Pinterest is a good idea if you are targeting more than the customers/clients in your locality. Thanks to the Internet, local businesses are now able to compete with larger businesses from around the world. Pinterest does not really help you if you are only targeting the people in your building since they will already know about you and what you are selling. 

You could enlist the services of a professional to advise you if your business is suitable for Pinterest. You could even have a professional manage your Pinterest campaign for convenience and professionalism. This way, you will be able to concentrate on running your business.

Is Pinterest set up to maximize my presence?

The process of setting up Pinterest is straightforward and it does not take too long, but proper steps must be followed if the profile is to have the desired effect. There should be descriptive keywords in the ‘about’ section. This section should give details on the business, including its location. Add website URL to the Pinterest profile and link the account to Twitter and Facebook for greater Web traffic. Add a Pinterest ‘follow’ button on your site and a ‘PinIt’ button on each one of your products/services. This will allow for following and sharing respectively. Have different boards for your different products/services with names that are easy to identify. The boards should highlight the products/services you have on offer. It is also advisable that you create boards promoting discounts. Pin an image in each one of the boards and use descriptive language in the boards, including the prices of the products/services where applicable. One the most common mistakes of using Pinterest is pinning images to your boards exclusively for promotional purposes. Mix up whatever you are selling with something interesting, even if you are not selling it. You could also use your boards to give tips and advice, such as how to wear a belt if you are selling belts.

Are you able to engage the Pinterest community?

A Pinterest campaign will only be successful if the community is involved. To do this, follow like-minded individuals and businesses in your local community, comment, re-pin and like content that your followers seem to care about and host regular contests.

Do you have another social media presence?

Complement your Pinterest campaign with other social media campaigns for maximum benefits. Remain active and integrate activities in all social medial platforms whenever you can. Take time to review the content that followers seem to enjoy more. All in all, Pinterest can be a powerful tool for ecommerce marketing for local small business.


6 Tips for Writing Compelling Blog Titles

Blogs form an integral part of any good Internet marketing campaign. Blogs are key to keeping loyal consumers and readers informed and engaged with your brand.

Quality and relevancy of your blog content is crucial. However, before users get to read the great content you have on your blog, you have to attract them to it in the first place.

In order to achieve this, you must have a catchy, compelling blog title that makes users want to read what is in the blog post. There are several ways through which you can write blog titles that will attract many readers to your post.

Below we offer 6 tips for writing compelling blog titles:

1 .You should be precise, clear and to the point. From the title, the readers should instantly know what they are going to get when they read the content of your blog. If the title clearly captures what they are looking for then they are definitely going to read that blog post.

2. People will always be looking for blog posts that tell them how to accomplish something. By using a title that tells the readers how to solve a certain problem or achieve something, they are more likely to read your blog post because they want to learn from the information you are offering.

3. Your title should tell people that the information you are sharing is new and they need to know about it. People are always looking for new products or new ways of doing things, so if your blog title gives this impression, it is bound to attract a lot of readers.

4. The use of numbers and lists in your title will also help in attracting readers to your blog post. It breaks down the article in a way that readers will find easier to read. It also sets expectations for what is in the post. For example, if your title is '6 tips to writing compelling blog articles', the readers will come to the blog posts expecting exactly that.

5. You will also be able to attract a lot of attention by being sensational or even controversial with your title. Readers will be immediately curious to read more once they see a title that challenges the norm and general expectations.

6. Using the right keywords in your title is also very important, as this is what the readers will use to find the blog through search engines. If you get the keywords right, your blog will have a better chance of ranking in the SERPs and readers will be quickly attracted to it since they will see that it talks about what they are looking for.

These are just some of the things you can do to attract more readers to your blog with your title. Remember to also write high quality blog content and give the readers what you promise in your title.


Adapting Your Business to Evolving Trends

The digital landscape changes every day. It is important that businesses keep up with the latest changes since there is intense competition over the Internet. Every business should take advantage of social media, and the most righteous businesses use these channels strategically and creatively.

Be Social & Start Learning About Your Target Market

Having a presence in social media allows you to interact with customers and potential customers. This will help you in gaining more awareness of who your target market is, and the things they appreciate. In essence, a social media presence is an effective and cheap market research tool. Create a Facebook brand page, a Twitter account, and Google+ profile page. Start asking questions and starting getting insights. Sound simple? It is.
F-commerce (Facebook Commerce) for Business

Your business should take advantage of such geo-location check-in services as Facebook locations and Foursquare. These services are important because you will help potential clients/customers find you easily. You could have rewards or discount opportunities for clients/customers who update their status that they are at your business premises.

Depending on the nature of your business, you can also take advantage of crowdsourced discounts and deals, such as LivingSocial and Groupon. You should also try such social commerce services as Armadealo and Shopkick. These create personalized experiences, which are important in that your clients/customers will share them.

Get Listed. Get Found.

Your business stands to benefit from such referral-based solutions as Yelp, Angie’s List, and Service Magic. These solutions promote the visibility of your business. The shared experiences with customers/clients mean you can improve your business, brand, products, or services.

Rewarding engagement will lead to greater ROI (return on investment) and improves customer loyalty and you should therefore consider using such gamification platforms as Fangager and Badgeville.

Be on the Cutting Edge 

Mobile Internet Marketing Strategies
You should also consider taking advantage of the mobile phone app frenzy. You could create an app to have an edge over your competitors. Mobile device users are making more and more decisions while on the move and they are reviewing their experiences and comparing options on these devices.

You should have a multi-disciplinary approach when creating an online presence and overall Internet marketing strategy. You should focus on tablets, laptops, desktops, smartphones and other platforms. You should create an experience that is holistic and optimized for each of these platforms.

Consider where the consumer click path begins and ends as you steer experience based on customer expectations. You should also take advantage of M-commerce and Facebook F-commerce. Determine what the expectations of your customers are and what they value in each platform and channel.

Knowing where customers engage will help you improve the customer experience. Customers are then more likely to share the experience.


Competing with Cloud-Based Businesses

Accenture, a global management consulting, outsourcing and technology company that has a presence in over 120 countries (and a staff of over 246,000 people) recently released a report titled ‘Where the Cloud Meets Reality: Scaling to Succeed in New Business Models’.

The report was based on phone and in-person interviews with 40 IT executives, operations executives, and business unit executives in 30 high-tech industry companies. All the businesses interviewed are Infrastructure-as-a-Service, Software-as-a-Service and Platform-as-a-Service cloud-based businesses. The Interviews started in May 2011 and ended in November 2011.

According to the research findings in ‘Where the Cloud Meets Reality: Scaling to Succeed in New Business Models’, high-tech companies are having a hard time transforming their traditional business models of shipping packaged software or hardware products to business models that provide new services based on cloud computing, the latter being more complex. The goal of this research was to come up with insights that will help companies that are interested in cloud-based business models.

According to the research findings, senior management executives in most companies lack the understanding of how the complexity of cloud-based business models impact operations in almost all functions of their establishments. The disconnect is significant since the interviewed companies intend to adopt over 5 business models for revenue generation by 2015 and it is likely that most of these models will be based around cloud computing. The companies interviewed had an average of 2 to 3 models today, adding a lack of security to the outlook of these companies.

Tech companies that use the old models are having a hard time competing with those that have already adopted cloud-based computing/services. Theses companies are being faced with operational challenges as they try to figure out how to support the new models and to deliver the experience that enterprise customers are demanding. These companies are having a hard time coping with the disruption that the change is causing.

According to the Accenture research, there are several steps that companies that are changing to cloud-based computing/services can take. They need to determine the exact business models they need so that they do not invest money in the wrong place. They must identify and create the distinctive capabilities that are needed in the delivery of business in the cloud.

Accenture also added that these businesses also need to develop segmented operation models to deliver the service capabilities and to save money whilst enhancing the customer experience. They also need to design governance model that will help in the making of such critical decisions as decisions on resource allocation.

What are you thoughts on these movements in business operations and resource allocation? Provide your comments below.


The Mobile Future of Search Marketing

Many people are increasingly using the search engines to find information, products or services that they need. In the past, most of these searches have been performed using personal computers, but the trend is now changing.

There has been an influx of mobile devices that allow users to access the Internet from just about anywhere, especially when they are on the move. The social networking sites are also very popular and are being used by millions of people all over the world. Many people now use their mobile internet devices to make searches online and also to access the social networking sites. This combination presents a great platform for the future of internet search marketing.

Mobile + Social Infusion

Businesses that are tech-savvy have recognized the role that mobile internet devices and the social networking sites are set to play in terms of internet marketing. Already, more than 50% of all online search activity occurs from mobile devices. This is because people conveniently carry their mobile devices around, and if they feel compelled to search for anything, the first place they will go is their mobile devices.

Having recognized this, businesses are now looking for various ways of, not only appearing at the top of SERPs during related searches, but also having their websites in a format that is easily accessible and navigable using the various mobile devices. Many businesses are exploring new and creative ways for mobile marketing and attaining more customer through mobile-based strategies.

Mobile Marketing Moving Forward

Once a business understands how people will use their mobile devices to find whatever they are looking for through search engines, it should be able to come up with a mobile friendly website design or landing page instantly available wherever they are. The page should be designed to captivate and engage the visitors, provide what they want, and convince them to pay money for your products or services in the end. It is important to localize the search parameters so that the visitors will see that the products or services that they are searching for are actually available easily and this will act as an additional reason to do business with your organization.

Businesses have also recognized that people share a lot of information and ideas about various aspects of their lives on social networking sites. Any business that can understand the dynamics of these social network site users can use it to market its products and services to a potentially huge audience. This requires establishing a presence on the social networking sites through fan pages and related ideas, and actively engaging the target audience through regular updates, comments and sharing of other relevant information.


Google Drive Evokes Content Ownership Concerns

Google Drive is a new product by Google that enables users to upload content to a central platform where others can use and share the content. With all of the other Google products out there, like Gmail, Google Maps, Google Calender, etc, it would be sensible to drop one's DropBox (a similar content sharing platform) for the new Google Drive.

But before you accept this new product by Google, there are some notable implications that you might want to consider. Below is summary of the terms of DropBox and Google Drive (summed up Internet marketer by Jay Dahl.)
So as you can see, any content you upload to Google Drive is essentially theirs. For many businesses (especially those in the SEO and website optimization professions) sharing their information with the big G is not in their best interests.

Google Drive might still serve as a fine product for individuals and personal use. However, these terms are somewhat alarming, are they not?

What do you think?


The Essence of Pinterest for Your Righteous Business Strategy

Social media sites have evolved from simple networking and friend sharing platforms to major marketing tools. As a result, businesses off all types are taking advantage of the immense popularity and marketing potential that these sites have to offer.

A rising star in the line-up of social media players is Pinterest. Launched in 2010, Pinterest has grown to peak the interests of many people. The rich media-based social platform has grown at an alarming 4000% over the past six month alone. Furthermore, Pinterest has shown a greater influx of traffic over other social media sites like Google Plus and YouTube.

The astounding growth of Pinterest must not go ignored, even by the small business marketers. Now rated the 3rd most popular social media network on the Web, Pinterest offers a unique platform that helps brands build awareness and customer acquisition.

The Power Behind Pinterest

Pinterest centers upon the sharing of interactive media, primarily images and videos. The essential purpose of the site is to provide a user-centric platform where people can distribute and share content that they like.
Similar to Facebook, this concept is offers a wealth of opportunity for righteous business marketers.

Exposing quality content to the masses (particularly creative infographics and customer-focused photos) can result in greater brand awareness for all types of companies. And what separates Pinterest from other social media sites, is its simplicity. There are no conversations and news-feeds - just sharing the goods.

Evoking the Pins of Your Target Market

Although many marketers are quick to assume that Pinterest is just another big business platform for major brands, the social sharing site offers opportunities for all. By enabling marketers to create a virtual pin board surrounding a specific theme of choice, Pinterest allows even local boutiques and small businesses to show off their content.

Pinterest allows marketers to really drill down on the interests of their target market. For a target audience of righteous business professionals, marketers can distribute eBooks, diagrams, and flow charts, all with notes that highlight important points throughout the content. For fasion-savvy shoppers, marketers can publish images of their latest clothing lines, product videos highlights, and other creative media to attract the eyes of users.

The advantages of this social media marketing platform is that almost any type of business with any type of audience can exploit opportunities. Whether for search engine optimization or purely brand exposure, marketers can flex their creative muscle with Pinterest.

Are You Pinterested Yet?

With Pinterest on the rise, this is on social media site that almost any marketer will want to exploit. Just be sure to brand virtual pin board so users can identify where this great content is coming from. There are also a number of other strategies to using Pinterest for SEO and website optimization. Here, we just want to give you a taste of the righteous business potential of Pinerest.


Why Internet Marketers Need to Ready Themselves for Industry Consolidation

The Internet marketing industry is on the verge of a significant movement toward consolidation. After years of developing niche specialties in the industry, many SEM and Internet marketing providers are under pressure from clients to offer a fuller range of services.

Internet marketing consolidationIn short, clients do not want to deal with a bunch of niche website specialists to meet their needs. Many prospects, particularly larger scale brands, want companies that can support a number of specialties, such as web design, SEO, copywriting, and Pay Per Click, to name a few..

Internet Marketers Moving Forward

In order to meet this challenge, there will be two options for companies in the SEM and Internet marketing industry. The first one will be mergers by small companies to form larger, more viable entities. Such an approach will work for companies like Havas and GroupM, which offer niche specialties in the web world.

The other strategy will be the acquisition of smaller website companies by larger organizations. Companies like Google, Bing and Facebook will seriously consider acquiring smaller boutiques to acquire the skills they need to meet the emerging needs of their clients.

Examples of Consolidation Movement

BoostCTR is one of the small providers that seem to be making themselves a target for acquisition because of their newly launched enterprise service - ad copy optimization. This program will increase the click through rates hence the return on investment for a search engine. The company is yet to name the big player in which they will be work with, but the company's CEO, David Greenbaum, noted that major search engine providers are looking for more specialized firms that can offer these capabilities.

The main driver behind the expected era of consolidation comes from the pressure from clients and the fact that there is too much fragmentation. Boost, BrightEdge, and Kenshoo are examples of niche providers with unique specializations. Calcalist, an Israeli publication, pointed that the drive towards consolidation is a sign that the website design and Internet marketing industry is entering its maturity phase.

Internet Marketers and website design companies alike are positioning themselves to ensure that the expected consolidation brings better fortunes. From niche web design boutiques to organic SEO firms, the shift is already apparent in many forms of web business.

So what exactly does this mean? Will a re-emergence of full-service ad agencies with core focuses in Internet marketing capabilities be the result?

What do you think? Let us know in the comments section below.