B2B vs. B2C

By | digital marketing | No Comments

Regardless of client, there’s always either a B2B or B2C focus that takes place. That said, few are the people—including lower-level marketers, from time to time—who actually know much of the subtle differences between the two marketing targets.

Sure, B2B stands for “business to business” and B2C represents “business to community,” but there’s much more to it than that. Whether working with one of America’s finest marketing agencies here in Utah or elsewhere, you’ll also need to know more about both of the aforementioned. No worries—allow us to make the task a bit simpler for you by way of an easy-to-read infographic:

Fusion 360 - B2B vs. B2C (Fusion 360 Agency)

2 Key PR Tactics that Make for Better SEO Results

By | SEO | No Comments

The world of SEO is constantly evolving. Long gone are the days when buying links was still viewed as an acceptable practice (try that now, and you’ll be punished accordingly by Google). And as the world of search marketing continues to change, one thing is becoming increasingly clear. Google and other search engines value quality content (and quality links) far more than an incredibly large usage of keywords or other practices. And as a result, the lines between quality digital public relations work and good SEO are becoming increasingly blurred.

As Business2Community recently noted, “Both PR and SEO practitioners need to be awesome at creating great content, skilled at running outreach [and] brilliant at building relationships.” These tactics are not only essential for being a top-notch public relations professional, but will also play a key role in getting your company to the top of the search rankings. Here’s how.

It Starts With Content

The baseline for any successful public relations effort starts with generating quality content. Whether it’s presenting well-organized data through an appealing infographic, creating a video that provides a more in-depth look at a particular topic or even simply writing informative, well-written blog posts, quality content is the basis of everything digital marketers should be trying to accomplish.

Why is that? Any public relations practitioner worth his salt knows that a key part in generating results in the world of SEO is establishing oneself as an accessible industry leader. And the best way to do that is by presenting your knowledge and expertise through (you guessed it) content. By presenting information that is useful and helpful to your audience (ie. your customers and potentially your industry at large), you show Google and other influencers that you really know what you’re talking about.

This isn’t to say that the commonly-cited SEO practices of using appropriate keywords, incorporating images, etc. should be tossed aside. But by writing to help your audience and share your expertise and then optimizing for SEO, you are much more likely to create that quality content that is becoming increasingly valued in today’s digital sphere.

The benefits of this are two-fold. First, quality content, when housed on your site or containing links to it, provides a significant SEO boost. More often than not, this content can be one of the biggest factors in determining whether your site moves up or down in search result rankings. Second, establishing yourself as an industry authority makes it easier to accomplish the other public relations goals—influencer outreach and building relationships.

Reaching and Using Influencers

Another key component of public relations that can also pay big dividends for your SEO efforts is influencer outreach. The Internet has made this somewhat easier than before—most journalists and industry influencers are quite active on Twitter, LinkedIn and other digital media platforms, but the fact remains that successfully reaching out is still quite often easier said than done.

After all, you can’t simply blast a stock email message promoting your latest, greatest blog post and expect it to get huge results. More likely than not, such messages will simply be deleted and possibly even get you blocked as a spammer on Twitter and other networks.

First things first, you need to research influencers for your particular industry. Figure out what they like and don’t like. And don’t try to sell yourself (or your content) right off the bat. Brandwatch recommends “following them on Twitter, [liking] their posts, [and commenting] on their blog.” Actual engagement with influencers’ content (such as commenting on an article with your own, non-salesy insights) will get you on their radar in a good way.

If you do things the right way, this will likely allow for you to generate online conversations with the influencer as you comment on and share his or her content. This in turn builds a positive relationship with said influencer, which will subsequently make him or her more likely to share your content or accept your guest post idea when you pitch them.

What does this have to do with SEO, you might ask? These public relations efforts may not immediately bear fruit in helping you move up the search rankings, but the promotion of your content or publication of a guest post by an industry influencer can do wonders for your site traffic. And it’s much easier to get that promotion if you’ve already established a solid relationship with an influencer and proven that you can produce quality content of your own.

After all, influencers are called influencers for a reason. These individuals are viewed as authority figures, and as such, tend to have large digital followings. If such a person were to share a link to your site’s latest blog post, you have tapped into a potentially much larger audience than you have ever had access to before. Guest blogging on an influencer’s site also provides the opportunity to reach these larger audiences and gain authoritative links back to your own site. But in order to get an influencer to be willing to do this for you, you must build and maintain a meaningful digital relationship.

These influential shares in turn boost SEO rankings as your site gains higher engagement and high-quality backlinks. Of course, before reaching out to influencers for guest blogging and other opportunities, be sure that their content and site are actually of high quality. You don’t want to accidentally hurt your SEO by posting on a lower-quality site.

By combining these public relations and SEO practices, digital marketers can improve their clients’ search rankings and achieve the long-lasting success that yields real results.

How to Create the (Almost) Perfect Social Media Post

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Is there such a thing as a “perfect” social media post? Probably not. No single post can do everything you might want it to, or reach everyone you hope to connect with. Social media is just too fluid and subjective. Effective digital marketing companies know how important it is to ride the wave of trends, likes and favorites to success.

There are, however, time-tested tricks of the trade that can maximize your posts’ success. No two social media platforms are alike, and no two digital strategies should be identical. Each platform has its own eccentricities and knowing what works for each is crucial to increasing your brand’s digital footprint.

Fusion 360 - How to Create the (Almost) Perfect Social Media Post (Fusion 360 Agency)

Instant Classics: Advertisements With Staying Power

By | advertising | No Comments

When most people think of American pop culture, they think of the Kardashians, reality TV, hip-hop and Miley Cyrus. There is, however, a slice of pop culture that is routinely overlooked: advertising.

The creative juices of marketing agencies have helped shape American pop culture for decades. Jingles, logos and brands are as influential as Kanye tells everyone he is. From the Oscar Mayer wiener to Kit Kat’s “Give Me a Break” to the Nike swoosh, advertisements have etched a place into our hearts and minds.

Fusion 360 - Instant Classics - Advertisements With Staying Power (Fusion 360 Agency)

8 PR Tips for Pitching a Journalist

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In the world of PR, sometimes it feels like you’re pitching into a big empty space and the only person responding is your own echo. Digital marketing firms who understand the importance of getting a story out there know this process can be rough. From ignored phone calls to blocked emails, everyone has taken his turn at rejection.

If you’re having a particularly difficult time getting journalists to notice your pitches, it might be time to take a step back and take closer look at your strategy. Based off of common journalist pet peeves and expert advice, here are a few things to keep in mind before you send that next email.

Fusion 360 - 8 Tips for Pitching a Journalist (Fusion 360 Agency)

For Digital Advertising Companies, Surviving Life After Ad-Block

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For digital marketing companies, Apple’s recent support of ad blocking in iOS 9 for mobile and Safari for OS X had many running for the hills. The move came as a culmination of years of growth in the online ad-blocking industry, with the ever-increasing popularity of ad blocking browser modules.

While some big name companies can pay the price for whitelisting—here’s looking at you, Amazon—most smaller businesses are left to flounder in Adblock’s wake. Has the arrival of Adblock to mobile heralded the end of digital advertising as we know it? Probably not. But online marketers will have to seriously up their game if they want to stay competitive in an increasingly bare digital landscape.

Fusion 360 - Surviving Life After Ad Block (Fusion 360 Agency)

8 Writing Hacks to Be a Better Content Marketer

By | content marketing | No Comments

If you’ve spent any time at all in the world of content marketing, you’ve probably learned that writing is one of the most essential skills needed to become a successful content marketer.

Advertising professionals from Utah to the East Coast are well aware that quality writing can make or break a successful SEO campaign—as well as your career. No matter how creative and witty you may think you are, if you can’t write, you should probably find a different career path. With that in mind, here are a few important tips to make sure your writing is up to snuff.

Fusion 360 - 8 writing Hacks to Be a Better Content Marketer (Fusion 360 Content Marketing)

2 Keys to Determining the Value of Your Content Marketing

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In the ever-changing world of content marketing, it can sometimes be difficult to see how your non-traditional advertising efforts are providing value to your company’s overall goals. After all, it’s easy to say that a piece of content marketing is well-written or beautifully designed, but if it doesn’t contribute to your company’s growth, is it really worth the effort?

Thankfully, there are a few key measurements that can be used to determine if your efforts are delivering the value that they should. And while other factors can influence these results, the following measurements should always play a considerable role in considering the success of your content marketing campaign.

Website Traffic

The first step for measuring success in any digital campaign is whether or not new traffic is being driven to your website. While some types of content are more likely to generate Web traffic than others, it is important that all such efforts be consistently measured and analyzed to determine whether or not they are having the desired effect.

Web analytics tools can provide business owners with a wide variety of useful statistics, such as the number of site visitors, the average number of pages viewed per site visit and the average amount of time spent on the site. While such statistics may not be considered to be as important as sales, Dummies makes it clear that the higher the numbers are, the more likely it is “that you have an engaged audience that interacts with the content you create, and you probably influence their purchasing decisions.” And these engaged audience members are more likely to recommend your content to others—thus driving new traffic.

What material can have a significant impact on these statistics? The answer, of course, is quality content marketing. Whether it’s a series of engaging, informative blog posts (which would increase the amount of time a visitor spends on the site) or a third-party link from another site that brings new visitors to your website, content marketing efforts can have a very direct impact on these statistics.

An increase in website traffic typically does even more than the aforementioned examples. As users spend more time on a site, Google and other search engines view this as an indicator that the site is a source of high-quality, authoritative content. This in turn can improve a site’s SEO rankings, helping other new customers find your site—even if they didn’t come to it directly through content marketing materials.

These metrics are not perfect forms of measuring the value of your content marketing efforts, since other factors (such as your website’s design and navigability) can also impact the increase or decrease of such statistics. However, if your content marketing is really doing its job, there should certainly be improvement in these areas.

Sales and Leads

Of course, in the business world, sales and leads are generally considered the ultimate measure of any strategy’s success (or lack thereof). And content marketing is no different.

Thankfully, there are plenty of statistics that show that quality content done right can directly contribute to an increase in sales and leads—especially when it is already increasing the number of page views and the amount of time spent on the site.

It goes without saying that the more time an individual spends on a website, the more likely he or she is to make a purchase. However, in many instances, a piece of content marketing can directly contribute to a sale or lead. For example, marketing guru Neil Patel reports that his company’s blog can drive anywhere between 60 to 80 percent of total sales leads for a given month—a significant return on investment. But this isn’t something marketers can just “set and forget.” Readers typically “[become] a lead after reading at least three blog posts,” which means that more often than not, marketers need to encourage readers to come back for more.

This means promoting blog content through social media and other channels to increase readership, as well as using sidebars that provide an opportunity for potential customers to sign up for email notifications or simply click to learn more about a given product or service. Even offering a free ebook after users submit email contact information can help increase return readership and improve the likelihood that people will continue reading the blog and eventually make a purchase—and website analytics allow business owners to see if someone looked at a piece of on-site content marketing before making a purchase.

Just like other website traffic metrics, content marketing is not the only influencing factor that drives increases or decreases in the number of sales and leads. A poor website design can frustrate consumers before they complete a purchase, no matter how good one’s content marketing strategy is. But when an easy-to-navigate website design is combined with a quality content marketing strategy, businesses are more likely to see the number of online sales and leads increase to never-before-seen heights.

8 Tips to Increase SEO with Pinterest

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For marketing companies from the East Coast to Utah, Pinterest is a godsend. While Twitter and Facebook target consumers’ current interests, Pinterest serves their future aspirations. That provides a virtually limitless opportunity for digital marketers, as nearly 70 percent of people on Pinterest use the social media platform as inspiration for future purchases.

The Pinterest demographic is overwhelmingly female, and Pinterest users are willing to spend more than either their Facebook or Twitter counterparts. How can businesses successfully increase their Pinterest rankings in such a lucrative market? The following are eight helpful tips for boosting your company’s SEO using Pinterest.

Fusion 360 - 8 Tips to Increase SEO With Pinterest (Fusion 360 SEO)

5 Things to Look for When Hiring a Web Designer

By | website design | No Comments

So, you’ve decided it’s time to take your business to the next level by way of a new website. Perhaps this is a first-time project or you’re simply seeking to improve the overall professional look of things—either way, you’re going to need to bring a talented website design specialist or agency onboard to turn your creative vision into a reality.

That said, with so many candidates, how can you filter through all the noise and find the perfect website design guru for your particular needs? Relax—though somewhat intimidating, the process needn’t be a confusing one. Cling to the following five points and you’re bound to see success:

1) Thoroughly Investigate a Designer’s Portfolio

During the time in which you’ve been running your business, you’ve probably been tasked with the recruitment of new talent. Obviously, résumés are a major part of this process. You take a look at a résumé and, if things check out, you bring a potential employee in for an interview.

Seems simple enough, right?

Well, as far as the field of website design is concerned, though how impressive a potential creative looks on paper is important, what really matters is the portfolio. Sit down and take the necessary time to thoroughly review a designer’s portfolio before offering a formal contract.

By so doing, you’ll have a decent idea as to what the end result might look like should you extend an offer.

2) Check Out Each and Every Reference

Instead of waiting around for a website design expert to magically appear, be proactive and surf the web to find a site that you admire. Using a business’ contact page, reach out and ask for a name or two as to who might be able to help you with your new project.

When done this way, you become substantially more effective with your search. Essentially, you’re in control and aren’t left at the mercy of what craigslist can produce for you. Once you’ve found a couple with whom you feel comfortable, ask for a few references and—here’s the shocking part—actually check them out.

Do your due diligence. This is by far the best way to avoid any unpleasant surprises when it comes time for a project to begin.

3) Discuss Where Your Site Will Be Designed

There’s never an exception to this rule—always ask where the development, design and coding of your website will take place. Sure, more than likely, you’re more concerned with who will be taking care of your website than where it will be built. But, if the location is neglected, you could very well find yourself in a world of hurt when an emergency arises.

Imagine hopping online to check out how things are going with your new site and having the ever-dreaded “HTTP 404 Not Found Error” thrown in your face. So, what do you do? You pick up your cell and call your designer.

If he or she is working in India, your phone call will go unanswered due to the time difference. While certainly an outlying situation, this sort of thing happens more often than you might think.

4) Be Upfront About Deadlines and Budget

In any sort of working relationship, whether it involve website design or not, it’s best that mutual understanding takes place before a project begins.

Providing more information about this important tidbit, says Travis Bennett, managing director at Studio Digita, in an interview with CIO.com, “When discussing your project with an agency [or designer], make sure you’re clear on the scope of what will be delivered, the amount of changes you can request, what’s required from your side to provide and the timeline for work to be produced.”

That way, in the end, nobody’s disappointed. So, during your hunt for the ideal website designer, be upfront about both the budget you’re working with and the timetable for what’s to take place.

5) Ensure You Are the One Who Owns the Design and Content

Just because you’re paying an ad agency or website design wizard to build you a custom-made website, doesn’t mean it’s legally yours.

In fact, while looking for a designer, you’ll need to make certain that the person or entity who’s taking on your project is willing to sign over all intellectual property rights.

If you bypass this step, when—and if, mind you—it comes time to sell your business, you could have a hard time bringing in the investment capital you deserve. More often than not, this isn’t an issue. If it is, look elsewhere for help.

Yes, the process of finding a talented, reliable website design professional can be a tedious task. But, when it’s all said and done, if you take the time to do things right, you’ll be more than satisfied.