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Paid Search involves making your business’s website or ads more visible on relevant search engine result pages or on social media sites. Paid Search ads includes anything from text ads on Google’s or Bing’s results pages, to ads on sites like Facebook and LinkedIn, to affiliate marketing. Internet users spend most of their time on search engines, and social media sites are a close second. Having your ads being the first that a potential customer comes across is therefore crucial and gives you the opportunity to advertise to a massive audience hundreds of millions in number.
When consumers make decisions, coworkers, friends and “people like me” are trusted far more frequently than any other company or organization. Consumers are much more likely to make their next purchase based on a recommendation from a friend or customer review than from an advertisement. For the first time in history, technology has reached a point where every individual’s voice, opinion and referral can be heard. Through social media, this voice has become a powerful force influencing and changing the ways individuals, companies and communities behave.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is the science of increasing traffic to a website by increasing its visibility in a search engine’s un-paid, or “natural”, search results. When search engines like Google and Bing return their top results from a search, the listings are sorted by what the search engine deems most relevant. SEO increases a page’s relevance by analyzing what people search for, the actual search terms and keywords typed into search engines, and how search engines return their results. Higher-ranked, more visible websites receive the most visits and are easily located by potential clients.
Facebook is the definition of online social networking. It’s a one-stop destination for its users to display, send, and comment on information, photos, and messages. Essentially, it’s a public forum, photo album, journal, and email all in one.
Twitter is referred to as the “microblog”, but it packs a punch. Everyday over 340 million tweets — blog posts of less than 140 characters – are generated by Twitter’s 500+ million users. Advertising is not the goal on Twitter (though you can purchase Twitter ad units), communication is.
Every second two new members join LinkedIn, the world’s largest professional networking site. The 174+ million professionals who use LinkedIn, 80% of whom are directly in charge of business decisions, do so to increase their own or their business’s online reputation and authority. After creating a professional profile, you can create large contact networks of people, called Connections, with whom you have worked with or for. Other LinkedIn features include joining professional and industry Groups, posting resumes, and interacting on LinkedIn Answers, a forum for posting questions and answers.
YouTube, a site for uploading, viewing, and commenting on videos, is also the world’s second largest search engine (trailing only Google). In terms of social media marketing, YouTube offers a wealth of advertising opportunities, including pay-per-click, In-Stream, and In-Search ads. YouTube also allows its users to subscribe to other users profiles and be immediately updated when new videos are available.
Content Marketing involves creating and sharing free content to attract prospects and turn customers into repeat customers. The specific content depends on what your business sells or offers, but should always be informative, entertaining, or (preferably) both. A rule of thumb is that all Content Marketing should present a problem related to customers’ lives or an industry issue, and solve it. Content Marketing is not about intrusive advertising as TV and radio commercials are. It’s about creating and sending informative content that makes you seem trustworthy, knowledgeable, and concerned. Effective Content Marketing builds a strong relationship over time between business and prospect or customer that is built on their trust and your authority.
Several months ago I switched over the management of my Social Media accounts to Socialated. Since our switch, I had tons of questions, but each time I was able to get in touch with Meredith in a seamless manner. She has been consistently professional and exceptionally helpful with everything to date. I cannot express enough my gratitude for the speed, diligence and professionalism of her work on our account.