5 minutes | Jun 11, 2014
Welcome to Marketing Quick #TipsOnQ In this episode we will be talking about Hashtags. MediaOnQ is a full-service marketing agency based out of Fargo, ND. At MediaOnQ we understand that as business owners and marketing professionals it is our job to get our content to both, prospects and customers in a way that is easy for them to engage with it. Today’s episode is all about Hashtags. As a reminder, you can catch the Marketing Quick Tips OnQ video series directly from MediaOnQ.com or from our YouTube Channel. We decided to make hashtags the topic because we found that several businesses are new to the idea of using social media in their marketing efforts. Yes, it’s true… Many small business owners or marketing professionals who have to wear multiple hats are only now starting to realize how important it is to get their content out there and leverage social media. So, what is a hashtag?
5 minutes | May 31, 2014
Vine Vanity URL for Your Business
In this week's episode of Marketing Quick we set up a Vanity URL for Your Business.
6 minutes | May 25, 2014
Twitter Lead Generation Cards Help Grow Your Business
This is the first episode of our Marketing Quick #TipsOnQ series. This series is available is also available as a video which you can find at MediaOnQ.com/TipsOnQ. The show notes for this episode will also include step-by-step instructions with screenshots for your convenience. If you have any questions along the way you can email me directly from our website or reach out through any of our social media channels and remember to use the hash tag #TipsOnQ so that I know how you found me. Lead Generation Cards on Twitter are a great way to capture user information directly from Twitter. They are easy to set up and you could have one up and running for your business in less than 10 minutes. You could easily set one of these Lead Generation Cards so that people can sign-up to receive your offers or incentives.
3 minutes | May 25, 2014
Marketing Quick #TipsOnQ
Today I’d like to introduce you to our brand new video series “Marketing Quick #TipsOnQ”. In the Marketing Quick #TipsOnQ series we cover a variety of topics like how to grow your business through Facebook, how to get more followers on YouTube and how to leverage Pinterest for your business or brand. We put this series together to help businesses and individuals build their Active Brand as well as help them compete in today’s web economy. We will have both a video version and an audio podcast version for each episode in an effort to make it convenient for you. All the episodes will be available directly from our website MediaOnQ.com where the most recent episode will be displayed on the home page. If you are interested in past episodes, you can access them from mediaonq.com/tipsonq.
12 minutes | Jan 29, 2014
How To Set Up A Successful Business Page on Facebook
Untitled Document How To Set Up A Successful Business Page on Facebook Episode 23 In this episode we will go over all the details on how to set up a successful business page on . So if you use Facebook to generate leads or help your business in any way, this episode is for you. Welcome to the Digital Media Branding Podcast. I’m your host from MediaOnQ. MediaOnQ is a based out of Fargo, ND. At we provide social media branding and marketing services to more than 250 business across the US and Canada. Social Media has become an essential component in today’s marketing campaigns and strategy. So it is no longer just a good idea to have a page for your business on Facebook. Facebook offers your business one of the most active social media networks. This active community can help your business establish and grow it’s brand as well as benefit from your followers because your followers will help establish trust and influence for your business. Facebook can also help enhance your business visibility on the web by helping you distribute your content. It can even help your efforts. Unfortunately to take full advantage of all the benefits that Facebook can offer our business it will take more than just setting up the business page. First impressions matter and a professional looking Facebook design will help your business stand out and impress visitors and followers. So I’d like to go over the various design elements or the anatomy of a successful business page on Facebook in hopes that it might help you get more out of our social media marketing efforts. And should you need help along the way just shoot me an email at and I will do what I can to help. Some of you may not know that I was a Sargent in the US Army back in the early 90s. One planning technique that has stuck with me from my Army days is backwards planning. So I’d like to start by going over the goal of this Facebook business page. We want to the Facebook business page to: Help us express our brand identity through cover art and graphics. We’ll want to showcase important business information about our products and services. We’ll want our content to cover tips, stats, photos and business news for our target audience. And we’ll want to be responsive to the engagement that our content produces. When you are building or designing your Facebook business page, you really should treat it just like any other professional web asset your company may have. What I am referring to as a web asset includes your website, landing pages, splash pages and directory service pages. So remember this is how your business will be represented on Facebook. And don’t take shortcuts; take the time to align your company’s brand and business strategy with the Facebook page so that you can start to benefit from the results. Let’s take a look at the design elements that will help us reach our business goals. #1 Make a Custom URL A custom URL is the actual web address that you would type to get to your Business Page on Facebook. With a custom URL you can easily direct your visitors to your Facebook page. For example, MediaOnQ’s custom URL is . Having a custom URL for your business on Facebook increases your visibility in search engines like Google and Bing, which helps your SEO efforts. It’s important that you set up a custom URL or vanity URL as it is often called, so that your social media presence can be more professional and of course personalized which in turn, helps brand your business. And because we are branding our business it then becomes important that we maintain consistency when setting up custom URLs on other channels like Google+ and Twitter. Moving on to #2 Maximize The Tabs Did you know that Facebook provides 12 different content subpages also called Apps or Tabs right on your Facebook page? You can use these Tabs to benefit your business. Even if you don’t have enough content to use up all 12 Tabs, it is important that you have a minimum of 4 Tabs with content because it helps give visitors a reason why to like your page and why they should follow you. You can add Tabs for your company videos, user groups, quick tips or notes for your audience, customer success stories and company events. You can even add Tabs that pull content directly from your website. Always keep in mind the original Goals for this page when coming up with what to put in these Tabs. Let’s move on to #3 Design a Unique ABOUT Section While it is simple to think that filling out the form fields that Facebook offers in the About section is enough…consider this. There are two main sections that matter. The first is ABOUT and the second is Description. So I’d like to suggest that we are strategic with the ABOUT section. Make sure that you include your company’s contact information in this section. The idea is to make it easy for visitors to contact you so that they can learn more about the products or services that you have to offer. Be sure to include your company’s unique value proposition and don’t forget to link them back to your own website. If you surf around Facebook you may notice that this approach is not common, which can help your content stand out from the rest. Now in the DESCRIPTION section, we will want to add content that includes relevant Keywords to our business so that this section can tie back to our own site’s strategy. Taking this approach will help maximize your search potential. I say this to my clients all the time. Is there anything wrong with the following? Say someone is on Google looking for your product or service. Wouldn’t you want to hold 3 or 4 spots in the search results? If someone clicks on the link that takes them to your website, that’s wonderful. And if someone clicks on the link to your Facebook page, that’s wonderful too because we made sure that your contact information and links were on your ABOUT section of the page. That is what I mean when I say we can maximize search potential. #4 Use Custom APPS What can do for your Facebook page and business? These custom APPS can help drive traffic to your website, your inventory of products or services as well as encourage customers and prospects to LIKE your Facebook page. There are lots of options in this space. PageModo, Constant Contact, Wildfire Apps and MyTab are some of those options. These types of APPS provide all of the technology you need to create quizzes, contests and sweepstakes. APP features, usability and prices vary so take the time to find the ones that best meet your own budget and goals. There are also other social media channels that offer their own APPS that allow you to take content you publish with them and place it directly into your Facebook page. Pinterest and YouTube are two examples of that. You upload a video on YouTube and it can be posted directly on to your Facebook page. This works in a similar way with Pinterest, if you pin something new, it can be displayed on your Facebook page. While I’m on this subject I want to remind you to think about Keywords and SEO when posting content on your social media channels. Your posts and content should not only link back to your website but the Keywords should support your own company’s SEO. And now… #5 Design to Drive Traffic to Your Website I touched on this briefly in #3 where we designed a unique ABOUT section. So we’ve already added a company description, link back to our website and included our phone numbers. Now let’s talk about the photos section. It is important that any photo that is available on your Facebook page is also available on your own website. Our strategy here is to post smaller photos here and add a note in the photo description offering the viewer a higher resolution version of this picture directly on your website. Moving on to… #6 Consider Professionally Designed Graphics Facebook is a place where your potential customers will interact and engage with your company’s brand, products and services. Hi quality graphics on your Facebook page will help you stand out and catch more eyeballs. Here are some graphic sizes that will help you get the most out of the image branding that is available on a Facebook page. Thumbnail image for your logo should fit into a 180 X180 pixel box. The graphic should be easily identifiable when it is scaled down to 32 X 32 pixels. The timeline profile image should be 851 pixels wide by 315 pixels high. If you upload any other dimension, it will be scaled to fit this size. And pay attention to the TAB thumbnail to ensure that it is displaying what you’d like to share with your audience. We’ve just covered the design elements or anatomy of a successful business page on Facebook. The key is to take the time to set up the business page so that it accurately represents your business. Putting in this effort will help your company stand out, drive traffic to your website, engage with customers and prospects and contribute to your SEO strategy. I hope that you found this information useful and would like to ask you to please subscribe on iTunes, leave us a review and share this with a business owner or marketing professional. If you need help with your social media marketing efforts, MediaOnQ is here to help. Email us at . If you have any other suggestions or Facebook business page strategy that you would like to share please send it to and I will make sure to update the blog post so that we can all benefit from the information. Join me next week where we’ll continue to discuss digital media branding and marketing strategies that help us compete in today’s web economy. Until next time, I’m from . Thank you for listening.
10 minutes | Jan 21, 2014
Why You Should Change Your Facebook Marketing Strategy
Digital Media Branding Podcast Episode 22 In today’s episode we will talk about how Facebook’s newsfeed changes should impact your Facebook marketing strategy. We will cover Story Bumping, Last Actor and Auto Video Previews on Mobile Facebook Pages...and how these three changes affect your current marketing strategy. Hello and welcome to the digital media branding podcast. I’m your host Carlos Quintero. I own a full service digital media branding and marketing agency called MediaOnQ based out of Fargo, North Dakota. We provide Social Media Marketing services for many of our clients and Facebook is as it should be an important part of any social media marketing strategy. About 4 ½ to 5 months ago, Facebook once again updated the algorithm that determines what people see in their news feed. This change has affected many company pages. The number of people who see each of your company page post is referred to as REACH. And REACH from company pages has gone down – way down in many cases. Many of our clients have reported 30% or more in decreases. So let’s dive in and try to identify why this is happening and attempt to come up with a way to improve our REACH. Everyone knows and everyone seems to accept the fact that all of your followers will most likely not see all of your posts. At best we reach 16% of our followers with our posts. We talk about this subject at length in episode 5, How To Use Facebook For Business. I’ll link to in the show notes in case you’re interested in checking that out. So again, we’re not surprised in that we will not reach 100% of our Facebook followers. We estimate that the average Facebook user has roughly 1,500, give or take a hundred, possible posts they could see at any given time. These posts would include any that their friends or company pages have interacted with by liking or posting and sharing. The Facebook algorithm then has to sort through all those posts and decide which to show and in what order to show them. This is where EdgeRank comes in to play. EdgeRank is what Facebook used to call their algorithm. When an update is first posted, it basically has the same amount of weight as any other new post on Facebook. The only way to ensure that your business posts has more weight or have an advantage that would allow it to be shown to more people is for you to promote it …in other words, buy advertising from Facebook. As Facebook continues to evolve, the algorithm becomes more and more sophisticated. Facebook now tells us that there are hundreds of factors that affect how their algorithm performs. This is what complicates things for all of us Business Owners and Marketers. The original notion that Facebook was a great way to get FREE Digital Advertising on the Web for our business has quickly gone away. In August of 2013 Facebook once again announced two new changes or modifications to their algorithm. The new changes are Story Bumping and Last Actor. These two new changes are the main cause for the decreases we talked about earlier. Let’s go over these changes. Story Bumping Story Bumping allows Facebook to determine what is new to a user. This means that if you don’t log in to Facebook for a day or two, it is possible that your news feed will not feature today’s content but rather content that has been posted since the last time that you logged in which can be several days old. So when you log in to your Facebook account and see stories that are old, outdated or untimely know you know that it is probably because you haven’t logged in regularly… Who would this impact the most? The answer is Just About Everyone. Say you are running a promotion so some kind. You create a post with the specifics – if people have not engaged with you recently or have logged in regularly they will not know about your promotion because it will not be shown to them. If you however have a very active following for your business page where people are Liking, Sharing and Commenting on your content regularly then you’ll benefit because the life of that post is extended due to engagement. This basically means that out of that 16% potential REACH that we stated with, you are now competing with every friend and like that your followers interact with for REACH, because the posts with the most engagement will automatically be bumped up in the news feeds. As a business owner or marketer is has never been more important to figure out how to increase the engagement of our posts to ensure that people want to interact with us by Liking the post, Commenting in the post and hopefully even Sharing the post. My advice to you would be to be methodical. Post content with a purpose and measure your results. Always try to bring value to your audience and your company through your Facebook posts. And always ask yourself, is this post engaging? And if it isn’t then make the necessary changes before you post it. This now brings up the Last Actor change. Last Actor refers to the fact that Facebook is now keeping track of the last 50 user interactions for each person. Based on these last or most recent 50 interactions, Facebook will then rank the pages where the interaction happened higher. So if say I interacted with 2 business pages and 48 friend pages as part of my Last Actor activity, the next time any of those Business Pages or Friends post, Facebook will rank their content higher in my news feed increasing the likelihood that I will see their content again. If you remember I started by saying that any one person has 1,500 potential posts that they can view at any one time., And we will at best reach 16% of our total followers. Last Actor now makes it so that if you don’t post every day, you’re probably never going to be in a person’s last 50 interactions. Posting once per day is probably not good enough. You’ll want to post regularly throughout the day to increase your chance of being bumped up in the news feed and ending up on more of your follower’s last 50 interactions. We work with Pages for our clients on a regular basis here at MediaOnQ and I’ve noticed that when we have a popular post it immediately will impact the next subsequent post by boosting it up the news feed. This is now part of our Facebook marketing strategy When we have a popular post, we will then post additional content within 90 minutes of the popular post because the added post’s REACH goes through the roof. This is once again where you want to be methodical. Plan out your posts where you set the bait with the first post and go for the ADDED REACH with the subsequent post. The initial post’s lifespan is like that of a firecracker…It is not intended to have lasting impact but rather to get as much attention as possible. This is what allows the supporting post to linger longer high on the news feed. One other change that I want to quickly cover is how Facebook now auto previews videos in the news feed on mobile devices. The videos will not play or have sound unless you actually engage with them by taping or clicking on them. I think this gives all of us an opportunity to embrace the use of video for our business and opens up additional creativity options for our business videos. We’ll be exploring options around using Video on Facebook this quarter and I’ll make sure to share the results with you. And if you need help or tips on how to use video in your marketing visit MediaOnQ.com and check out our Digital Media Blog, where we have a collection of videos that can help you fast track your production. You can also find them on our YouTube channel. I’ll include the link in the show notes, which will be posted at MediaOnQ.com. Our most recent episode is right on the home page so it will be easy for you to find. Do you use Facebook as part of your marketing plan? If you do, have you seen a drop in REACH from your company page on Facebook? If you’d like to share your comments or tips with us, please email me at or leave your comments in our blog post at MediaOnQ.com. I hope that you found this information useful. Please subscribe on iTunes, Leave us a Review and share this with a business owner or marketing professional so that we can help each other through information sharing. Join me next time where we’ll discuss the anatomy of a successful business page on Facebook. Until next time, I’m Carlos Quintero from MediaOnQ. MediaOnQ – Helping You Compete In Today’s Web Economy. Thank you for listening.
20 minutes | Jan 14, 2014
Top 10 Marketing Paths To Grow Sales For Your Business
Digital Media Branding Podcast Episode 21 In today’s episode we will go over the Top 10 Digital Marketing Paths To Increase Your Company’s Sales. Welcome to the Digital Media Branding Podcast, I’m your host Carlos Quintero. I own a full service digital media marketing agency based out of Fargo, ND. In my job, I have the opportunity to work with many clients who are often business owners. Being in business today is much more sophisticated because of the web and everything that it implies right? Businesses of all sizes, large and small and even startups have to consider how to best allocate their time and resources to get the most bang out of their efforts. This is why I started the Digital Media Branding Podcast. I wanted to share my 17 plus years of digital marketing experience with marketers and business owners in an effort to help fast track their success or as we call it at MediaOnQ, helping you compete in today’s web economy. So thank you for joining me today. Today we will dive in to the Top 10 Digital Marketing Paths To Grow Your Company’s Sales. What we’re covering here are the variations or types of sales paths that you can take. Your choice as to which path or sales strategy you choose to take can help dramatically increase your sales or keep them flat which really means you lost money right, since you’ve invested time and resources into it. So how do you know what is the best option for your business? Let’s start by taking a look at the top 10 digital marketing path options to find the best fit for your own business Marketing Path #1 – The Shotgun Approach This really is kind of what it sounds like. The strategy basically calls for any and every possible tool, channel and resource to help attract and retain customers. Here at MediaOnQ we’ve experienced our own success and have helped many businesses reach their own success by focusing on the following 9 key areas. 1. Website 2. Social Media Activity 3. Mobile Responsiveness 4. Blogging Activity 5. Email Marketing 6. Lead Nurturing 7. SEO 8. Video 9. Analytics As a matter of fact, every time we land a new client we start by taking a look at each of those 9 areas to come up with a detail picture of digital marketing and establish a strategy roadmap to help our clients improve. This of course can be difficult for some small businesses where one person is attempting to get it all done themselves. MediaOnQ can help carry some or all of that weight, that’s one of the services that we offer. Trying to do it all themselves for most businesses becomes overwhelming and often times the strategy is flat out abandoned or worse, they’ll only work on the things that they enjoy. I’ll tell you why I think this is worse, because only working on what you like or enjoy really means that you are fooling yourself. It gives the impression that you are working hard and working all the time but what you don’t see is how much of your potential audience you are really ignoring and neglecting and that is unfortunate. Throughout my career I’ve yet to see any company or small business be successful when they have a single way of attracting new customers. Here’s something else that you might find interesting. Over the past 3 years or so, I’ve asked every business owner or marketing representative that I’ve talked to if they use Facebook for business. As in do they have a Facebook business page for their business? 9 out of 10 have said yes, and typically the stragglers said they were planning on having one up soon. I then of course followed up with what does that Facebook business page do for your business? I have yet to have anyone answer that question with a real response as in it drives x amount of web traffic to our landing pages or it serves as a way to test out product ideas and incentives … so I’d like to ask you, do you use social media in your own strategy and if you do, what does it do for your business? You can send your response to firstname.lastname@example.org I look forward to your answer and hope that you break this cycle for me with your business answer to my elusive question. So here’s an example for you. Wal-Mart uses more than 350 different strategies to attract and retain customers. What I’ve found is that most businesses tend to use 1 or 2 strategies simply because they don’t know about the other options that are available out there for them. Now let’s talk about Marketing Path #2 Education Marketing Education marketing or marketing training is a relatively new form of marketing. The idea behind it is to give your clients, customers and prospects content that allows them to learn about your products, services or information. This approach is most successful when the message is specific toward solving or improving a problem or situation. At MediaOnQ we always try to make money, save money or improve the quality of life for our clients and customers. So try thinking about it from that perspective. Some approaches toward Education Marketing might include product or service how to videos, info-graphics, tutorials, e-books and or a podcast. Does your business service a specific niche? If it does, then a web video series might be the most effective option for you. Education marketing or educating your clients works well for three main reasons. The first is because you are immediately giving your audience some value. This value translates into trust and brand loyalty. The second is because while you are training, it is easier to sell. You have the ability to go over the highlights of your product or service showcasing its strengths and value to your audience. The third is targeting. This allows you to target the specific sector of the market that can benefit from your product or service. For example, if you are a retailer who sells a juicer. You can write an article that talks about natural juice helps you live a healthier life. You will want to let them know how and where they would be able to find and purchase the juicer referenced in the article. Individual who care about or are interested in healthy living will most likely read this article, which will help facilitate a sale. Moving on to Marketing Path #3 – Measure Your Key Performance Indicators Tracking and analytics are not fun for most people simply because it forces us to give up our own perceptions and deal with cold hard facts. Key metrics that you should keep an eye on are: Visits & Visitors Time Spent on Site Bounce Rate Exit Pages Conversion Rate We’ll have to cover these more in depth in a future podcast episode but if you have any questions on these please email me at email@example.com and I will do my best to help. Marketing Path #4 – Use The Right Marketing Model Lots of businesses out there are faced with a similar problem. They lack real results. Sustainability is important. Having short-term success is good but it can also be misleading because it can also give us a false sense of security. We’ve all experienced this in one form or another. Sales start to soften up or they hit the brick wall plateau or a competitor moves in and gives our audience another option. Most often than not the main cause is that we’ve done little if anything to change up or freshen up our approach. Let’s look at this from a different perspective. Do you remember what your favorite song was say 5 summers ago? How about last summer? Or better yet, what was your favorite song 3 months ago? AND Is it still your favorite song? Chances are that this favorite song of yesterday has moved down the list of favorite songs of now right? That is because as time passes we have more or new options…and as people we tend to gravitate toward the new. So if and when you find your business experiencing some form of success introduce new marketing models to leverage and extend your period of success. The main key here is to give your customers what they are looking for in a way that fits their lifestyle. For example, if you sell UGG shoes at the mall. Use Instagram to show off the new styles with video and photos and if you’re using video then make a shorter version to publish on vine. This would apply to basically any product or service. The brands themselves do a great job at telling people what they should buy, through national advertising. Think about that for a moment. National advertising on TV, RADIO and PRINT basically shows us their products and services telling us what to buy. In our own efforts as business owners, it then becomes our job to tell people Where to buy. So if I revisit the UGG shoe sales example and change it out to an Agriculture client, say a Tractor Dealership or a Seed Dealer, can they too use Instagram and Vine? Of course they can. What if your business does not sell a national brand of product or service? Well then that means your marketing path and approach needs to pull double duty. How successful is your own marketing model? I’d like to hear about it, so if you’d like to share please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Marketing Path #5 - 2-step Selling The 2-step selling method makes it easier and is a much more cost effective way of selling. In a 2-step selling process you actually turn things around. Where normally you would go after a customer, with this method you give customers a reason why they should buy from you. Let’s go over an example of how this type of selling might work. We’ll start with two business that sell computers, smartphones and tablets. They both not only offer similar products but also carry the same brands and are at the same price point. As consumers, we all know and are often attracted by the lowest price right? So if we are one of the storeowners or marketing managers, what can we do to mix it up and drive sales? We could write an e-book titled “101 Ways to Help Your Child Get Into The University Of Their Dreams”. This e-book would offer real advice that would often be accompanied by a laptop,
10 minutes | Dec 10, 2013
How To Fix 5 Common Web Navigation Mistakes
27 minutes | Dec 5, 2013
10 Steps To A Successful Website Design
These 10 steps toward a successful website design or redesign will help you make money by turning your business website into an inbound marketing machine without compromising your user’s experience and expectation.
15 minutes | Nov 26, 2013
How To Make Great Marketing Videos
Welcome to the Digital Media Branding Podcast Episode 018 How To Make Great Marketing Videos Hello, I’m your host Carlos Quintero. I own a full service digital media branding and marketing company based out of Fargo, ND called MediaOnQ. Because this is our Thanks Giving edition of the Digital Media Branding Podcast, we are going to change up the format a bit. Today we’re going to go over some tips to help you make great marketing videos and hopefully inspire a viral campaign for your company. I’ll also share with you a valuable resource to help you create your own videos so that you can fast-track your video marketing campaign. We’ll also go over the components of viral video marketing and I’ll share my thoughts on the whole Google+ - YouTube Comments Merge. Before we dive in, I have an important announcement for you. Moving forward, we will be releasing our weekly podcast episodes on Tuesday’s at Noon that is 12pm CST or GTM -6. Before I go on, I want to thank all of you for listening to our podcast and for all the feedback. We really appreciate it. Thank you. So with that, let’s get started. At MediaOnQ we structure our marketing around building Active Brands. This basically means that the marketing objective is to get the message where the customers spend their time or already are. Unlike traditional marketing, taking this approach allow us to go after our target audience rather than wait for them to come and hope that they consume the message. There are a number of components to building an Active Brand and Video, or more specifically web video is one of them. In today’s social media fueled world, video marketing has become more crucial toward building a successful digital brand. Prior to the internet, the use of video in a marketing campaign meant that you had to produce an ad that would then run on TV or Cable. In doing so, you really had one of two options. Well in some markets you had these two options. The first is to use the TV or Cable’s own production department to make an ad for you. This typically meant that you would end up with a PowerPoint Slideshow with bulleted text and a logo, type of ad which in my opinion is about as compelling as say chewing on tin foil. Still today, you see these type of ads all over small market television and cable stations… Option two would be to hire a video production agency to help you put an ad together. The combined expense of producing the video ad and then buying the television or cable spot made it hard for many small businesses and organizations to even consider this as a possible marketing strategy. Fast Forward to Today and Thanks to Technology Advancements…anyone and just about everyone can leverage video marketing through YouTube and other channels. And if you’re interested outsourcing the video production you now don’t have to spend a ton of money on video production. In fact, MediaOnQ has 30-Second video ad packages that start at around $900 for a fully produced spot. So we’ve come a long way. OK - So what makes online video marketing so powerful? The key is in the way that people interact with the content. Here’s what I mean. Let’s say that you’re looking for information on that Christmas present you’re getting for your loved one. If both of the following offered the same information… Would you be more likely to read a blog post or would you be more likely to watch a video? Research tell us that only 2 out of 10 or 20% of web visitors will read text on a web page but 8 out of 10 or 80% will watch a video containing that same content. You may have heard that visitors who watch a video on your website typically stay 2 minutes longer on that website. But did you know that because they stick around longer, they are also 64% more likely to purchase from you? And when you ad video to a web page, you increase it’s chance of ranking on page-one of Google’s results by 50%. Hopefully some of this research inspires you to add video marketing to your efforts. Let’s go over some types of marketing videos and possibilities, keeping in mind that sky really is the limit here. So one approach might be to Tell a Story. Just so that we are all clear here, this is not the famous elevator pitch type of story, but rather the type of story that your audience wants to hear. When you focus on the benefit to your audience, you are more likely to create that emotional connection and reaction with your video. There are two videos that come to mind which in my opinion did a great job at telling a story. The first is the Built in Detroit campaign that Chrysler launched around 2012. You may’ve noticed that they’ve continued to build on it since then… The second is another car brand. Ford switched it up in 2013 by treating their video commercials into mini-movies or short stories. One of the most memorable spots for me is where the women break into the guy’s apartment to get a painting…they get the painting and get away in a Ford…in the end it was her painting anyway. Even though I work in the industry, I don’t typically remember Television Commercials with that level of detail… You could also offer a video testimonial and combine it with the story telling. Testimonials tend to work well for attorneys, accountants, dentists and other healthcare professionals. Another type of video that you might consider is one that showcases your strengths. A product or service demo is a quick way for you to show your audience visually what exactly you and your company can do for them. At MediaOnQ we’ve seen success around videos that get to the point quickly. So unlike story telling you need to be concise and quick with your message. Oh and don’t get me wrong, you should still provide some level of entertainment. I mean, you would not want to have someone simply reading off bullet points on a product or service in front of a camera. Another approach could be a straight forward sales pitch. Give your customers a run-down on what your product or service has to offer. The goal is to generate interest by showing your audience how your product or service will benefit them or how you stand out from your competitors. A quick example of this type of approach would be the various auto insurance commercials that we often come across. They have a service which is packaged as a product and then they focus on price, while some of their competitors focus on the service after the sale… If you have a product or service that is in development, then you might want to create a teaser. A teaser would allow you to show short highlights of the product or service. Giving the audience enough to get them interested in the product or service but also allowing you room to complete or modify the full version. We see examples of this type of video in movie trailers or with video game trailers. The objective is to create buzz around the announcement or launch date. These are just a few of the types of videos that you might consider producing for your company and of course you would be able to mix and match any of these to best suit your offerings. There are a few things to keep in mind when coming up with the video concept and message. You’ll want to determine if the video will target your existing customers or will it target your prospects? And keep in mind that all videos should strengthen your brand. So now I want to share that video creating resource that I mentioned earlier. MediaOnQ’s Brand Promise is to help you - that’s all of our customers and audience, compete in today’s web economy. So, we’ve started to put together a series of How To videos on Video Production and Post Production which are now available on our YouTube Channel. We currently have 6 videos in that play list covering topics like How To Shoot Better Video With Your iPhone, Video Concept and Production Principles, How To Set Up a Video Shoot Location and How To Shoot for the Edit. You will find a link at taking you directly to our YouTube page so that you can access these videos and I will also include a link in the show notes. We plan on continuing to build this collection to cover more video production and post production topics to include color grading and video marketing techniques. If you have a suggestion as to what kind of video would be helpful to you and your business please email us at . We’ve decided to expand on our brand’s promise beyond this podcast as a way to give thanks to our community. We’re really excited to see where this goes and hope that some of these tips are useful in your own video marketing strategy. Also, it is worth mentioning that if you would rather look for these videos directly on YouTube, you’ll want to search for MediaOnQ or CarlosQ00 (zero, zero) so you can get to them quickly. Apparently my full name is fairly common… So now let’s talk for a moment about a Viral Video Campaign… Many of our clients always associate web video with viral video. Unfortunately going viral is not easy. If it was, everyone would do it. I’m bringing this up because like all things, it takes time to build a community…so if your videos don’t instantly hit the hundreds or thousands of views…don’t give up. Now, a viral video does not have to be edgy. So if you have a conservative brand or product you can still go after producing a viral video. So once you’ve set your sights on viral video marketing you will want to include these three components to help increase the chance that your video will go viral. Be Funny because what is mostly shared is typically funny or amusing in some way. Be Interactive so when you receive feedback or any type make sure to respond as this means that viewers are engaged. Be Relevant people care about issues and things that matter or are happening in the world today. When a video speaks to those issues in a fresh new way, viewers tend to respond. While you may not end up with the new viral sen
15 minutes | Nov 18, 2013
How To Grow Your Social Media Influence Through Engagement
Welcome to the Digital Media Branding Podcast Episode 017 How To Grow Your Social Media Influence Hello, I’m your host Carlos Quintero and I own a full service digital media branding and marketing company based out of Fargo, ND called MediaOnQ. Today we’ll be talking about How To Grow Your Social Media Influence. At MediaOnQ when we work with clients to help them come up with their social media strategy. In doing so, we always keep a single point in mind and that is, we want our efforts to produce engagement. Engaging content helps us build trust and once we have the trust we cross over toward being influential. Before we go on, I’d like to make a point. There are a lot of companies and individuals out there who consider themselves to be social media experts. Many have their own strategies that they deploy with their own clients. I’d like to suggest that there is No Single Cookie Cutter approach toward social media for all companies and not even for all industries. Could that be true? Yes because after all we are dealing with people. And to top that, people in different markets. So it all has to start with who is our target audience? Once we pinned that down, we can begin to look at how we should structure our social media marketing plan, with the objective of building trust and influence through engagement. I’d like to make one other suggestion. Before you accept the advice from anyone including me, ask about their own strategy. I really do mean that, because I believe that this is a question that is important to you as a small business or marketing professional who is about to spend time, effort and money on this journey. Think about this. Let’s say that you wanted to grow your YouTube subscriptions. Part of that strategy would be to produce a video or web video series right... If you hire an agency or consultant to produce and launch this for you it will require time, resources and finances to get it done. So, wouldn’t you want to see or know that they’ve had success implementing their ideas in on their own YouTube channel? Or would you feel comfortable simply giving out your hard earned cash in hopes of getting results? This of course would be true with any kind of Social Media Channel. If someone is giving you advice on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, YouTube and so on...take a moment to ask them about their own efforts and check out their channels. Hopefully you’ll find that they are exactly who they represent themselves to be. So now, let’s go through the 10 steps to help build your Social Media Influence. #1 Do It All At Once What I mean by do it all at once is to work on building your brand, building your product and promoting yourself all at once. You don’t want to do this in steps because if you do, you will lose valuable time. In other words, no one can build influence over night. Every phase or aspect takes time to build. So while you are building your product, you should be building your brand and promoting yourself, so that once the product or service offering is ready to launch you won’t be starting from ground zero. #2 Understand What Each Channel Has To Offer Not all social media should be used in the same way... While this may seem a little obvious, it is surprising to see how many small businesses and companies out there misunderstand this. So let’s break it down. Facebook. Facebook targets people you already know. Family & friends and maybe even customers. So with Facebook, understanding that you are really asking people you know to recommend or endorse you is key toward driving engagement and building influence. Twitter. Twitter is more of the personal perception. The one-on-one connection with you or your company. Think about that for a moment. How powerful is it to know that you can connect directly with an individual? How cool is it for your client base to know that they have a direct line to your business? Allowing people to connect with a person or a company representative through Twitter, helps build trust, delivers one-on-one engagement and helps build influence. Moving on to Google+. Google+ is a bit different in that here you have the ability to connect with people with similar passions. So with Google+ you are not targeting people you know but rather people who share interest, or industry peers. The common drive, goals and inspiration is what drives the engagement and allows you to build influence. Now let’s talk about Pinterest. Pinterest, for all of you who are still ignoring Pinterest, you should check out the Digital Media Branding Podcast Episode 6 where we discuss how to use Pinterest for Business. And another great resource which I would strongly recommend is Cynthia Sanchez and her Podcast Oh So Pinteresting. You can find her on Google+, iTunes or at her website OhSoPinteresting.com. I’ll make sure to include links to all this in the show notes. Pinterest is all about pinning right. What does that mean? Well pinning allows you to express yourself. Pinning allows you to explore and find new stuff. How does this translate to you and your business? Well pinning allows your audience to interact and engage with your products and services. If you can show how your product or service is a part of your customer’s life or how your product or service interacts with your customers then in my opinion you’ve hit a grand slam with Pinterest. That type of engagement will build your credibility, trust, brand and influence. The last social channel that we’ll discuss today is LinkedIn. LinkedIn allows you to show off. LinkedIn is a place where professionals get together to talk shop. This is the ideal place to show off your products, services and experience. Think of it as shameless self-promotion because it is ok if everyone knows that you are great at XYZ... This now leads me to #3 Create a Great Profile Seems obvious right? Again, amazing how many companies and businesses don’t or have not taken the time to do this. With social media like most other things in life and business, you can’t simply go through the motions. If you have a business page, on a social channel and you don’t have a profile, what does that say about your business? Just last week, I had a consulting call with a new client who basically said. Carlos, I have 6 kids, own my own business and have all the friends I need so I don’t have time to complete all these profiles. He is not in a unique situation. And frankly, I can see why he would feel that way... My response to him was simple. Why then should anyone take time out of their life, because we all have busy lives right? To follow you, endorse you, trust you, promote you or even buy from you? If you don’t have time or the resources to get this done, then outsource it. Hire a company who can help you get it done. Skipping the Create a Great Profile step will diminish your social media efforts and it will make it very difficult for people to engage, trust or view you as an influential source. #4 Become a Curator What does this actually mean? For your industry, I would guess that you are not the only provider of goods, services or information. I would also guess that there are other items that relate toward your offering. Some of these may be of value to your own customer base. If you organize the valuable content for them and make it easy for them to find what matters to them, you become a valuable resource. When your community views you as a resource for more than just your product, services or information you’ve crossed over to the influential side of social media. Now this does not mean that you copy someone’s content and post it as your own. It means that you mention the content and link them to the source. #5 Leverage Social Sharing If you’re providing value to your community or target audience, then why not ask them to share that value with their friends? If you ask, you will most likely get. Here’s an example. I purchased the RODE SmartLav a while back. During my testing I decided to make a video to show how it performed outside of a studio in windy conditions. I posted the video on YouTube and as of today have had more than 660 views. I also Tweeted that I’d just posted this video and RODE Microphones favored my Tweet and Shared it with their followers. How awesome is that? Instantly, I was able to reach a far greater number of people thanks to their engagement with my content. And now #6 Show Some Restraint What I mean by this is that not every post should boast about you and your business. If you are following along, we want to create value beyond our own service offerings here since that allows us to increase our social influence. So, I would suggest that one out of every ten post should be about you and the rest should focus on bringing some sort of value to your community and target audience. I am not suggesting that you could not bring value with every single one of your posts but rather that when you make it about them they are more willing to accept and support the messages that are all about you. In other words, your social media channel will not come across as spammy. If any of you marketers out there disagree or have a different take on this please let me know. You can email me at email@example.com #7 Use More Than Words Here’s what I mean. When you post something on your blog or any of your social media channels how likely would you say people are to read a 1,500 word post? Now let’s say that the same post has pictures in it. If you are scrolling through your social channel and notice a picture that call for your attention...aren’t you more likely to see what it is all about? So I’m suggesting that if you are taking the time to add a post, don’t settle for just words, add a picture or video to support that post. Doing so, will help you get the most out of your efforts. #8 Don’t Be Silent I work with a wide range of clients and some are better at this than othe
12 minutes | Nov 12, 2013
How To Upgrade Your Site's Thank You Page
How to Upgrade Your Thank You Pages Welcome to the Digital Media Branding Podcast Episode 16. 6 Steps You Can Take To Upgrade Your Website Thank You Pages Hello I am your host Carlos Quintero from MediaOnQ.com. I run a Full Service Digital Media Branding & Marketing Agency that is based out of Fargo, North Dakota. MediaOnQ offers a wide range of services to include Web Design and E-commerce. Many of our clients have Thank You pages on their sites. Some have them to thank customers for shopping or placing an order with them others to thank them for feedback. Near the end of 2013 - which is the time of this recording. I am still amazed by how many online sites and marketers simply say Thank You on the page and leave it at that. Consider this. The people who get to see your Thank You page have already gone through the Marketing Conversion. In other words, they have successfully become a customer or a visitor who’s taken action and engaged with your brand and website. So why would anyone who has secured a customer allow the transaction to simply be? This became the inspiration for today’s podcast. We will cover 6 steps that we can take to upgrade the Thank You pages on our websites. Keep in mind, these tips will apply to many types of websites to include online shopping sites as well as sites that collect leads or feedback from their site visitors. So let’s get started. #1 Cross-Sell If someone has already purchased from you, why not share with them other items that they too might be interested in? One company that does this exceptionally well is Amazon. If you run a search for any item, Amazon makes sure that you are made aware of other items that people who purchased or were interested in also searched for. This approach is simply brilliant and I have to say that even way back in the late 90’s I remember working with clients who admired that approach. To get this totally out there - yes, I am 41 so I’ve been around from about the start of the internet… Not quite the start since I started my company in 1996…but close enough I suppose. OK. Let’s get back on track here. Cross-Selling When the thank you page only offers a thank you message, you are really only giving your customer one option and that is to close the browser window and be done or simply go back to Google or YouTube to find something else to shop for or review One of the best ways to increase your revenue is to re-sell your existing customer or close a sale on those people who already want to buy from you. You do this by increasing the average sale or spend. Chances are that you’ve been up-sold or cross-sold before. I know I have. Think about it. Remember that magazine or chocolate bar that you picked up at the checkout? How about that pastry that you purchased with our morning coffee? Or that camera or smartphone that may have cost you an extra few dollars but was totally worth it because of the added features. These are all examples of up selling and or cross selling. The best part of cross selling or up selling is that you are simply presenting additional offerings or alternatives to those customers who are ready to buy from you. Cross selling is much easier than simply targeting prospects… The key to cross-selling is to make sure that you introduce your website visitors to other relevant items or content that may benefit them or that they may find useful. So keep that in mind as you think about how you might want to implement a cross-selling strategy on your own site. Obviously, if you need help or would like advice simply email us at firstname.lastname@example.org, I’d love to help. Next on our list is… #2 Newsletter Subscription I need to be clear here. If your website has adequate newsletter subscription opportunities throughout, then this is not the place to once again try to hammer the message home in hopes of a new subscriber. You don’t want to come across as desperate…I like to compare it to when you were dating…because after all it is a relationship that we are trying to build here. I’ve had clients ask me why they would need a newsletter when they have Facebook and Twitter… Unlike Facebook and Twitter - A newsletter allows you more room or space to articulate and share valuable information about your product or service or that special promotion that is going on through the end of the week. A newsletter allows you enough ways to show people how they might be able to access that special promotion or what actions they will want to take to participate. A newsletter allows your business to stay in touch with all of those website visitors who love what you have to offer. It allows you to embrace your audience. You have to remember, they sign up or opt-in because they want your content and information… Another benefit of a newsletter is that it becomes a one-on-one touch point. The newsletter is delivered to the customer’s inbox - it is not easy to read more than one email message at the same time right? The idea is to build or have multiple, customer touch points in your campaign. So, a newsletter allows you to be proactive. You can present actionable items or content that allows your customers to engage with your brand, product or service… This makes it so that you are at the top of mind awareness. It helps you build competitive barriers and for you as a company it allows you to prospect without hoping that someone might stumble upon your content or service offering. Now I have to bring this up because a while back I was listening to a podcast by Ray Ortega aka @PodcastHelper on Twitter, where he mentioned newsletters and how they were a great way to stay in touch with your customer base should something horrible happen like your website crashes or some other tragedy. Frankly, I’d never considered that prior to listening to the podcast but that is a very real world possibility and something that every business should consider in their security and disaster recovery plans and efforts. Two more points that I want to make about a newsletter. First, a newsletter is less likely to get lost in the social media updates flood of messages and second, a newsletter is a friendly reminder that your company is still in business. If you’d like more information about newsletters you should check out the Digital Media Branding Podcast Episode 8, which talks about how to optimize your email marketing campaign. Moving along now to… #3 Create a User Account Many online vendors and storefronts offer a quick guest checkout option. This is sometimes convenient for those website visitors who may be accessing your store from a mobile device or simply don’t have time to go through the full registration process. If that is the case, the thank you page is the ideal location to invite users to set up their account. My wife Bert who is a senior media sales consultant always brings up the marketing phrase “business goes where it’s invited”… So keep that in mind. At MediaOnQ we’ve actually set up up specific incentives around those visitors who choose to take the express check-out options to help increase subscriptions. I will share that on average, we are able to increase subscriptions by 22%…so it does work. So what is the key to increasing subscriptions? In a single word…Benefits. Offer some sort of benefit to the consumer and they will take it, thereby increasing your subscriptions. OK, and now… #4 Provide Useful Links It may seem a little obvious or redundant but let’s say that you just purchased a new DSLR Camera. You could share links to sample photos or video that this camera can produce as well as other people’s thoughts or even product reviews. I’ll use myself as an example. Prior to purchasing my Canon C300 I read as many blog posts and product reviews as I could find and went through pretty much every YouTube and Vimeo video that was out there at the time. I finally made the purchasing decision and today still find myself reading or watching any and all content that features the Canon C300. I think that it would be fair to say that people always want more… OK, next on the list. #5 Social Media Sharing There are some companies out there that are excellent at this like B&H and Amazon. When you go through their checkout process they give you the opportunity to share a comment about your activity on your social channels. Make it easy for your customers and website visitors to brag and share across whatever social channel they prefer. In other words, I am suggesting that you don’t simply limit them to share via Twitter and Facebook but rather open it up to allow them to share on Pinterests, SumbleUpon or whatever other channel your target audience may use. This is also a great opportunity to invite your customer or website visitor to follow your company on your own social media channels. If you’re running a non-profit or cause type of site, this could be a great way to spread the message about an upcoming event or theme-based month to increase the awareness. Now for the last suggestion… #6 Ask a Question Take the opportunity to ask for feedback. Get creative, find ways of asking for feedback to help you improve the customer service, customer experience and improve the engagement with your brand’s products, service and information. Keep this in mind. You will want to keep it simple. Don’t ask your visitors to type out an answer. Instead use a checkbox type of survey where the visitor can simply check a box to provide their feedback. As of this recording there are several services out there that make it easy for you to create surveys like Survey Monkey. And if I am not mistaken Survey Monkey allows you to set up one survey completely free of charge so this would be my recommendation for you to try before you make a bigger commitment. We’ve just covered my 6 suggestions for you to improve the Thank You pages on your websites. Let’s go through this list one more time. #1 Cros
10 minutes | Nov 4, 2013
How To Secure Your Web Hosting Account
5 Ways To Secure Your Web Hosting Account Hello, I’m Carlos Quintero owner of a Full Service Media & Marketing company called MediaOnQ. One of our areas of expertise is website design and development. So today, we’ll be discussing how to secure your web server as consumers not as network engineers. We’ll be covering 5 key areas that impact our website’s security. Our company website or websites the face of our business on the World Wide Web. Sometimes selecting a business hosting provider can be time-consuming but taking the time to find reliable business hosting is absolutely worth it. Because once your website is up and you start adding content to it, it becomes a valuable business asset. And for sure, an asset that is worth defending against malicious attacks. Here are 5 easy and practical ways to keep your hosting account secure as you continue to grow your website. Keep All Software Updated Most small business owners use software like WordPress or Drupal to publish their web content and manage their website. Or if they have an online store they might use an application like osCommerce or Magneto. Overtime, these applications and scripts are updated and revised by their development teams. Most often these revisions offer vital protection against bugs and security vulnerabilities. Keeping your software up to date takes minutes. Where as repairing a hacked website could take days or weeks and in some extreme cases you make end up losing everything. Of course this all depends on the severity of the attack. So what can we do to keep all of our software updated? Here are three action items for you. First: Install security patches and updates as soon as they are made available. This will help keep your data secure and ensure that your website isn’t compromised by hackers. Second: Make it a habit to regularly check your plugins and add-ons for updates and install those too. Third: Always back up your databases before installing new updates - just in case something goes wrong. You don’t want the headaches involved with not having a backup of your databases...that can be a topic for a future podcast. Cleanup Your Accounts When you first set up your web hosting account you probably will need to create multiple login accounts for things like FTP, email and database access. Over time as you are exposed to what is possible your needs will probably change. Some of these changes may cause for some of the original accounts to become redundant. Or maybe there was someone on your staff who needed access for something specific and is no longer there. Or maybe you worked with freelancers at some point and don’t anymore. Leaving their login credentials in place as in not removing them would then leave their login details in limbo and that’s something you’ll want to avoid. So here are three useful suggestions to help cleanup your accounts. First - regularly review all of the user permissions and accounts in your web hosting control panel. Second - remove any users that are redundant to reduce the risk of someone hacking into your hosting account, or misusing a login that has been long forgotten. Third - remove any generic accounts that are no longer required. Lockdown Private Files It is inevitable. Not all files that are uploaded to your web server will be intended for public access. You may upload project ideas, contracts or even test data. Some people continue to use their web server as a storage hub for archived material or as a way to share documents. Solutions like Google Docs or DropBox are a better option in my opinion but I still have clients who have not made that switch. So the risk there is that as time passes, you may not remember what you’ve uploaded and that could present a security problem. Web servers are intended to be accessible right, so safeguarding sensitive information is a must. So here are my three suggestions to help you lockdown private files. Fist - use the tools in your host’s control panel to lock down access to files and directories that should be private and periodically review security on any sensitive data. Second - whenever possible use password protection settings on your sensitive directories. Third And this is one that you will want to think about before you try it - set rules via htaccess files, but make sure that you are comfortable writing the syntax because a poorly-written line in the htaccess file can cause extensive problems with your website. Practice Good Password Etiquette You have been given one username and password for your control panel, one for your database or databases and another for your email accounts as well as another for your FTP account. As tempting as it may be to use the same password for all of these - don’t do it. Why? Because if a hacker got a hold of your password he or she could wreak havoc on ever part of your web server. So here are my three suggestions to help you practice good password etiquette. First - set all of your passwords individually and use a mix of uppercase letters, lowercase letters, special characters and numbers. Second - if you store or save your passwords on your computer, use a secure password vault from a reputable vendor. Third - change your password every other month and make sure not to recycle passwords in other words don’t use a password more than once. Backup Your Files Regularly No matter how hard you work at keeping your web server secure and your website safe...there may be a time when the worst can happen. Hackers may find a way in to your website and web server even if you are vigilant. The damage they cause can take days or even weeks to fix. There are some hosting companies that offer backup services as part of their standard package. Most offer backup services as an added feature which means extra paid feature. If you’re not sure if your hosting provider offers this service as a stand alone or included offering I’d suggest you contact them and ask. Or you can check their website and see if the service is included. Or you might check some web hosting review sites to find out how they stack up agains others. The point I’m trying to make is don’t assume...find out. So here are my three suggestions to help ensure that you backup your files regularly. First - find out if your web host offers backup services. Find out how easy they are to access should you need them and find out if you have to pay to retrieve lost files. Second - if your host doesn’t offer backup services then you need to get into the habit of backing up your files, folders and databases regularly. Third - Don’t forget to backup email mailboxes. We all know that creating and developing a website requires a significant investment of time and resources. But going through the process is not an option if we want to compete in today’s web economy. So it makes sense to ensure that your investment is protected. So keep these 5 points in mind as you work toward securing your web hosting account. Keep All Software Up To Date Cleanup Your Accounts Lockdown Private Files Practice Good Password Etiquette Backup Your Files Regularly Although it isn’t possible to completely protect against every possible attack or mishap, thinking ahead and securing your hosting account will help to ensure you are in the best possible position if the worst happens. If you need help implementing any of my suggestions I am here to help, you can email me at email@example.com. I hope that you found this information useful. If you did please subscribe on iTunes, leave us a review and share it with a friend. If you’d like additional information about our web design and development services please visit mediaonq.com
17 minutes | Sep 30, 2013
How To Use LinkedIn For Business
Podcast Episode – LinkedIn For Business In this podcast episode we will be featuring Bert Quintero, who is a Senior Marketing Consultant for Midwest Communications. Midwest Communications is not only one of the largest Media Groups in the country but also a media group that has a solid digital media strategy for themselves and their client base. We will be discussing how to use LinkedIn Company Pages for Marketing. Hello, I’m your host Carlos Quintero owner and founder of MediaOnQ. MediaOnQ is a Full Service Digital Media Agency based out of Fargo, North Dakota. We’ve been helping a wide variety of clients ranging from start-ups all the way up to large fortune 25 companies by building what we call an Active Brand. Active Brands place your message where your customers are by bringing Video, Web, Mobile and SEO strategies together. Doing so allows you to effectively compete in today’s web economy. Without any further delay, I’d like to welcome Bert back to our podcast. Welcome back Bert, it’s been a while since our Pinterest episode. I really enjoyed the way you explained and laid out the information on Pinterests so if you ok with it, I’d like you to please run us through some Facts about LinkedIn for Business. Bert – Well it is hard not to have LinkedIn on your marketing radar if your in business today and I’ll tell you why. LinkedIn has more than 200 million registered users, in more than 200 countries across the globe. More than three million companies have LinkedIn Company Pages. Professionals are signing up for LinkedIn at a rate of approximately two new members per second. LinkedIn is the world’s largest professional social network. You’re making for a very strong argument here about how or why every company should be interested in having a LinkedIn strategy or make sure that they are on their way toward setting one up. Bert – Mike Grishaver, who is the Products Management & Monetization executive at LinkedIn, had an interesting comment about what LinkedIn Company Pages can provide. He said LinkedIn company pages can provide “a more powerful way to build relationships with your target audience” with its emphasis on visual and relevant content. In my opinion LinkedIn Company pages give business a more complete set of tools to do effective marketing on a social platform. I agree with you. LinkedIn offers people who have jobs a place to show off their skills, experience, knowledge and professional backgrounds. I also did notice that LinkedIn is not where you find out if someone has a headache that day or not as it sometimes happens with other social media networks. Bert – LinkedIn offers affluent and influential members which is a highly valuable demographic for marketers. As a user, you can quickly discover the people who are employed by a certain company or the various types of business a certain person has worked for and so on. If you’re looking to connect with industry professionals and generate leads for your business – LinkedIn should be an integral part of your social media marketing strategy. Thank you for that. You’ve now set the stage. I am ready to learn all about the ins and outs of LinkedIn Company Pages and more specifically how I can use that information and apply it to help grow my business. Bert – Obviously, I would suggest that every company take the time and invest in the effort to establish their LinkedIn Company Page. Consider this…chances are that many of your employees are updating their personal profiles to show where they work. Every person that connects with that profile may potentially click on your company’s name. Hundreds or even thousands of users can easily land on your page through a simple click while browsing on LinkedIn. Opinions will be formed based on the information that they find once they land on that Company Page. As a business you should take advantage of this opportunity and work toward growing your company’s reach through your own employees. That is a terrific concept; grow your company’s reach through your employee profiles on LinkedIn. - Excellent advice. Bert – In marketing there are two points that need to be made quickly and clearly. What to buy and Where to buy LinkedIn Company pages allow you to spread product or service awareness. Company Pages on LinkedIn allow you to separate individual products or offerings. In comparison, Facebook allows you to create a business page where you would then display all of your products or offering on that one single page. Facebook also then allows you to see which friends like that page. LinkedIn on the other hand allows you to narrow the engagement by allowing you to add multiple products or service offerings with images and descriptions for each making it easy for each product or offering to stand out individually. This makes it easy for customers to learn all about the various products and services that your company produces. Customers are also able to see how many other users recommend your products and services. This type of product awareness is very difficult to come by. OK, in today’s web economy, accountability is critical. Is it safe to assume that LinkedIn offers some sort of measurement for these product specific company page sections? Bert – Yes. LinkedIn allows you to measure the engagement with each of your product or service sections of the Company Page. So the marketing take away here is that we can spread the product awareness through LinkedIn Company pages. In my mind LinkedIn has always been sort of a Recruiting Platform. Would that be a fair statement today? Bert – I would have to say yes because job postings appear in search results on Twitter. Having a LinkedIn Company Page allows you to greatly increase your visibility across the web. Many people are familiar with LinkedIn’s own Job Search Engine. More and more people are using LinkedIn to find great companies to work for. So you’re suggesting that even though someone might have a job, it is possible that they would seek out or search for advancement opportunities on LinkedIn. Bert – Yes. Passive candidates can present great opportunities for many companies. The marketing take away here is that if you don’t have a LinkedIn company page you could potentially miss prospects, leads and even employees. Let me recap for a moment because these 3 tips where excellent. LinkedIn Company Pages help 1. Grow Your Reach 2. Increase Product and Service Awareness 3. Allow Your Company to be Found by customers, prospects and potential employment candidates Bert, please walk us through the LinkedIn Company Page, what’s important, what should people focus on and what they should avoid? Bert – LinkedIn company pages are broken down into six sections 1. Home 2. Careers 3. Products 4. Page Insights 5. Follower Insights 6. Employee Insights As it is true with any kind of landing page – the LinkedIn Company Home page is incredibly important because it provides the first impression. Make sure that you include a clear reason as to why someone should be interested in your company. Talk about when the company was founded, who founded it and why. Point out events or accomplishments that are noteworthy throughout the life of your company. Take advantage of the news feed section. Be sure to post company updates, job postings and new hires. Remember that this feed is your company’s way of communicating important messages to your audiences. I always recommend that in those update posts you include a link back to your own company website since this is a terrify way to add back links from a trusted source while you help generate web traffic and leads to grow your business. Bert – 24-hours after you post a company update you will start to see a few different metrics in grey. These show the number of impressions, clicks and engagement percentage from your post. These metrics are important because it allows you to better understand your audience. If something produces a great deal of engagement you can then try to replicate across other products or services. Bert – There’s one more piece to this. It is important that you don’t simply forget about that post but rather Engage with the audience. Keep the conversation going by liking or commenting on updates. That is so true, there are many companies that simply post on social media sites and expect the audience to interact with itself. Ignoring those who engage with you is always the wrong thing to do and frankly a waste of time for everyone. Bert – I should point out that LinkedIn now allows you to interact using your company name and logo instead of as your individual profile. That is a huge plus – and for some a lifesaver since they can delegate the task. What can you tell me about the careers section of the LinkedIn Company Page? I’ll start by pointing out that the careers section requires a paid subscription to LinkedIn. If you work in a highly competitive field or want to be the company where everyone wants to work – The Careers page is essential. This section allows you to help people understand your company’s culture. You can also showcase awards, map out career paths with your company, highlight your best employees and post jobs that target candidates using the automated job matching. Not only can you reach thousands of professionals but you’ll also have the ability to see exactly who has viewed your job using real-time analytics. You can quickly find out how closely they match your job posting based on a 1-10 score and even dig further to see who the applicant is connected to on LinkedIn. Great info – and just to restate this, the Careers section is a LinkedIn Paid Section…but it may be worth investing to further define a company page. Let’s discuss the Products section a bit
7 minutes | Jul 30, 2013
How Video Improves SEO
Welcome to Digital Media Branding Podcast Episode 13 How Video Improves SEO Hello, my name is Carlos Quintero and I own a Digital Media Branding company called MediaOnQ. I've been fortunate enough to have had the opportunity to work in the digital space for most of my career as far back as 1996. Based on my own personal experience working with a broad range of clients from small businesses all the way up to Fortune 25 companies, I’ve witnessed how video can dramatically improve a brand’s identity and search engine’s ranking on the World Wide Web. It is no secret that Google owns YouTube. And as of this recording YouTube is the #2 Search Engine in the World. You may not realize that more than 48 hours of video are uploaded to YouTube every minute of every day. That is simply more video than what most of us can imagine. The quality of the video is the only thing that can help brands stand out in this massive content pool. Adding well produced video content to YouTube will immediately impact your brands ranking on Google Search Page Results. It is important that I mention that Google will display video in their search results from other sources like Vimeo and Miro. We'll cover some of the factors that play a roll in how video ranks in a future podcast. So how does all this work? How does Video Improve SEO? Let's start by pointing out that Quality Original Content is King when it comes to SEO. In other words, if you produce great content for your Blog, Business, Personal Pages or Podcast you will be rewarded by your audience through Engagement. Engagement - that is the name of this game. Engagement gives us the reason to care about how and where we rank on Google or Bing. We care because we want our content to be consumed by the target audience. Engagement allows businesses - Large and Small alike to increase their sampling, effectively helping them with prospecting efforts. Engagement typically results in more conversions and higher quality leads. Video can improve our SEO through Engagement. Now let's talk about that for a moment. How does Video improve SEO through Engagement? Well, Video Makes Content More Sticky Video helps reduce bounce rates. A bounce rate is also known as a short click, which means that a visitor spend very little time on a particular web page. According to a ComScore Study, people stay on a web page an average of 2 minutes longer when they watch a video. That is how Video makes our content sticky. Video helps content rank higher. Video can actually help rank your content on Page One of the Search Engine Results even with highly competitive keywords. Page One ranking results can actually be increased by 53 times simply by adding video content to that page. The main reason for this is that video simply less competitive. In other words, few people and companies are taking advantage of this opportunity. Video allows brands to establish their claim on their niche… Have you heard of be the first or the best to see the most success? Well Video offers you and your business the opportunity to be first or better than others in your niche. Here's a quick fact for you. More than 80% of video that Google displays in search results are informational videos. Video helps improve your content's back-links. Back-Links are important to an SEO strategy. Some of you may not know that Google's original name was back-rub, so yes, Back-Links are very important and having the ability to upload your video to multiple video search engines and directories is an easy way to create more back-links to your own site's content. The added back-links can help improve your own website's rankings. Oh and let's not forget that video search engines make it easy for visitors to share and embed your videos on to social media sharing sites, blogs, news feeds and even personal sites. Again, this creates more back-links to your content and website. What else can Video do? Video adds Original Content to Your Brand. Original Content Rules on the Web. Keep this in mind. If you produce a video and publish it, it will be unlikely that someone else will copy and paste it on to their own site and claim it as their own. So my advice to you would be that the more competitive your niche is the more video you should consider to produce and publish to help separate you from the pack. Video also allows you to repurpose the content into other digital media platforms for additional content consumption such as Screen-shots, Text Transcript for your Blog or News Feed, PDF Download, PowerPoint Slideshow and Audio Podcast to name a few. You can also use Video to build your website's traffic. Yes, Video can build your Website Traffic. You can leverage YouTube and other Video Consumption sites by building content trailers that help drive traffic back to your own site where visitors can then consume the full version of the content and possibly sample additional product, content or information directly from your website. Here's something that I'd like to share with all of you. For those of you who don't know me, I love my Grandma for so many reason and here's one. When I was about 8 years old, I remember her saying that "when opportunity presents itself, it is your responsibility to take it". I remember thinking, what on earth is she talking about? Fast forward to today and here we are. Video levels the playing field - you too can be relevant, you can compete with the deep pockets and big boys. Leverage video. Grow your site, your blog, your audience and your revenue. And if you need help along the way, I'm here to help. Join me next time where we'll continue to discuss a variety of digital media branding topics and strategies that will help you compete in today's web economy. If you found this information helpful please subscribe on iTunes, leave a review and share it with a friend. My name is Carlos Quintero, Owner and Founder of MediaOnQ - Until next time, Take Care. Carlos Quintero QBusinesSolutions, Inc. 701-566-7328 office
14 minutes | Jun 8, 2013
How To - Best Way To Reach Multi-Screen Users
Episode 11 What’s the Best Way to Reach Multi-Screen Users Hello and welcome to episode 11 of the . I’m owner and founder of , a Digital Media Branding Company in the upper Midwest. So, what is the best way to reach multi-screen users assuming that our goal is to increase engagement with your brand’s products, content or information? There are several options out there for you to deliver your web content to multi-screen users. Picking the right path to take however may not be intuitively obvious. Let’s start by clarifying the terms multi-screen users. When we talk about multi-screen users we are referring to all of us who more and more access the web from our smartphones or tablet devices. This of course would not mean that we’ve abandoned our computers but rather that we fall into today’s norm which is using multiple devices or screen sizes to consume content. Personally, I can think of at least one time this week where I watched a video on my phone and viewed it again later while I was at my office. In episode 10 of the , I referenced a recent study called the Multi-Screen World. There were two important points in this study. There were probably more than two, but two for sure that stood out to me. The first point – People are connected all the time, particularly when they are sitting down to watch television. It’s common practice for both my wife and I to bring out iPads over to the couch as we sit down to watch a show. The second point – 90% of people move between devices to accomplish a single task. Again, I can relate to this because I almost always check my email while waiting for my coffee at the drive thru. OK – I want you to think about this for a moment. When you visit a website from a large company like say MSN, BestBuy or ; is your experience the same on your desktop as it is on your smartphone or tablet? Hopefully the answer is Yes. While how you interact with the content may be different based on the screen size, your experience with that brand should be what you’d expect which is to get to the content or information that you were after. This then creates the experience that will hopefully get you to want to come back and interact with that brand again. The main emphasis here is the engagement. Some of these companies understand the need to increase the engagement and have tailored their interactive platforms to give their customers the experience they expect when accessing from various devices. At we call the tailored engagement experience – Building An . So let’s assume that you are ready take your interactive platform to multi-screen users. What are your options? How do you get started? How do you get the most bang-for-your-buck when you move forward with this type of strategy? We’ll cover all of this and more, next. There are three different approaches toward delivering your content to the multi-screen user. We’ll be covering each here shortly. It is important that you know and understand that each business may have their own very specific reasons as to why they preferred one to another. In other words, there is no single cookie-cutter type of solution that will fit all businesses. My goal here is to give you enough information to allow you to be successful regardless of which solution you’ve selected for your business. So keep this in mind, they key to your success here will be in your ability to tailor the user experience across devices in a way that addresses the customer needs. We covered how to determine what that customer need is by device in the Episode 10. If you missed it, it will be worth your time to go through it, as the information we covered in episode 10 will help you establish your foundation for this type of project. Ok, so now lets go over the three different approaches toward delivering your content to multi-screen users. The first approach we’ll discuss is . What is ? Responsive allows you to optimize your site’s experience based on screen-size without the need to create multiple websites. So a responsive website will adjust the size of your images, content layout and content visibility based on the size of screen you are using to access the site. It is worth noting that it is not simply shrinking the size of your website. It is changing the way the content is being delivered in a way that will not affect the user experience. What I mean by this is that if the site were simply shrinking, the text and buttons would then also shrink making it difficult for users to navigate through your site or read the text. A Responsive Website will shrink the images to make sure they fit, but it will adjust the size of the text so that you can still read it and change the buttons so that you can use them on say a smartphone. Responsive sites are also able to use gestures to navigate through the site. Gestures are the way that you currently use the native apps on your smartphone like dragging, swiping and so on. Other advantage to a Responsive site include: Having a single website to maintain. Having a single URL for any one particular piece of content, this is important because it makes it easier for users to interact, share and link to your content. And, with a single website, there is no need to redirect to a mobile version of your site or have the need to promote sub-domains or other directories. This in some cases will help reduce load time. So far it sounds like moving forward with a responsive website is the way to go, right? For many companies it will be the better option but in order to create a great experience around your Responsive site’s content you will need to have device specific strategies. This means that you will need to design your web content with your end user in mind. More specifically design the content in a way that will allow the smartphone user to interact with your site in a way that will allow him/her get to what they need or want quickly. Then do the same for the tablet user, the desktop user and the smart TV user. What on earth does all of that mean? In my day-to-day job I get to see all types of companies and a lot of them are jumping in to responsive websites without thinking it through. What I am saying here is that for me as a user, it is annoying to visit a responsive website from my phone where the whole screen is covered by navigation buttons and in some cases it may take two full swipes to get to the site’s content. So the more you make your user work to get to your content the less likely they will recommend it or enjoy the experience. In the navigation example, thinking it through would have allowed for the navigation to turn into a drop-down type of list consuming one row of content rather than making the user swipe… So keep that in mind as you select who will be and how that may work against your goals. The second approach toward delivering your content to the multi-screen user is to dynamically serve different HTML on the same URL. So your website would have to be programmed to automatically detect what type of device was accessing it and present a custom page, based on that specific device, on the same web address a.k.a. URL. It is possible to design these types of pages for any kind of device – mobile phones, tablets, desktop computers and even smart TVs. This type of solution is probably best suited for companies who have a technical resource on hand or maybe some type of retained services agreement with a digital media company because the customized style sheets have to be maintained on a per-device basis. The big advantage however is the ability to specifically target the device and deliver the specific content they expect wrapped around a completely tailored experience for that type of user. The third approach toward delivering your content to the multi-screen user is to simply separate the mobile URLs a.k.a. web addresses. You may have noticed that there are some companies that use .MOBI instead of .COM or others that use subdomains like m.mediaonq.com or mobile.mediaonq.com. And then there are others who use directories to deliver their mobile content. An example would be /mobile. With these types of options you would then build a separate site for your mobile traffic. This second site would be completely independent of your original desktop version of your website. The way it works is that a small piece of code is added to the site’s home page which allows the web browser – IE, Safari, Firefox, Chrome or whatever browser you are using to automatically detect if the user is on a mobile device and then automatically redirects them to the mobile optimized version of your website. A dedicated mobile version of your site allows you to tailor the mobile user experience making it a popular preference for many companies. One of the most popular mobile frameworks is jQueryMobile – this frameworks allows you to build mobile websites that act and respond like native apps on mobile devices. jQueryMobile offers a wide variety of powerful option that allow you to tap into the smartphone resources like the photo, map and microphone options. So if you need or want that extra functionality of say directions to your location directly from your mobile website, this is your best option. So now that we have a better understanding of why it is important to target the multi-screen user and what our options are to deliver our content to them let’s discuss some real-world examples of the adaptive user experience. This new, well sort of new multi-screen user has changed the way businesses need to look at their interactive platform. Today’s users visit websites on a variety of devices so we need to think about the layout, visibility and context related content in a way that will allow us to adapt to our customers. We need to deliver the right experience based on their device or screen size in order to generate engagement with our brand’s content, product or information. Let’s go over a fe
6 minutes | May 22, 2013
How To Make Your Website Work Across Multiple Devices
How To Make Your Website Work Across Multiple Devices In today’s podcast we will find what it means to be multi-screen or what some call mobile friendly and what this actually means for different businesses. Hello, I’m Carlos Quintero and I own a digital media branding company called MediaOnQ. It is important that you build a website that showcases your business on every screen from smartphones and tablets to computers and even web enabled television sets and here’s why. When an individual is looking for your service, product or information they can either find you or they will find your competitor. You must remember that your customers expect a great browsing experience regardless of what device they are using. I’d like you to think about this for a moment. Can you recall a time or times when you may have started reading an email on your phone while at a red light during your commute or while waiting for your coffee at the drive thru and then continued reading on your laptop at home or on your computer when you got to your office? Or maybe you heard a commercial on the radio for a new car, and then used your tablet to check it out? If these things sound familiar, that’s because they’re all part of the new norm in multi-screen content consumption. In a recent Google Study called the Multi-screen World, they discovered that 90% of people move between devices to accomplish a single goal. And again, we are talking about everything from a smartphone to a smart TVs. So what does this actually mean? Well from my perspective it simply means that businesses need to adapt their web presence for smaller screens and I mean screens that are less than 7 inches diagonally. It is true that normal websites when viewed on tablet devices generally render well enough to allow users to navigate them. This however is not true when we shrink the screen size to that of a smartphone. Here are a couple of questions for you to consider. Are your customers able to interact with your content properly on all devices? Is your company’s you web experience really optimized? Are you currently offering customers exactly what they’re looking for based on how they consume your content? In the next segment we are going to take the business perspective to help us understand how today’s customers interact with our site. Recently, I posted a picture of my wife using her iPad while we sat down to watch a television show together after dinner. At the time, she didn’t know that she’d actually inspired this episode of Digital Media Branding. Studies show that people are basically plugged in all day long and often times while simultaneously watching TV. This is where the light bulb should really come on. Businesses that allow users to interact with their brand across all platforms and on all devices are going to naturally generate more engagement. At MediaOnQ we call that having an Active Brand. Active Brands place your message where the customers are. More engagement generally means higher brand recognition and more revenue. So how do we get started? We first need to clearly understand how today’s customers interact with your website. We can do this by taking a look at the site’s analytics. And in case anyone out there doesn’t know, Google provides terrific analytics tools that are completely free of charge. If you need help with that please visit MediaOnQ.com and send me an email, I’d be more than happy to help. The analytics can help us understand where customers come from, when are they visiting the site, what types of content they are consuming and what devices they are using to access the site. Taking the time to analyze these stats is important because they will provide the areas of interest or more specifically where it is that you should be spending your time. Now that you’ve gone over your site’s analytics you should have more of a clear picture as to what a smart phone user is looking for on your website. You should also compare what say, a Tablet or Computer user is accessing on your website. You may notice that each device may target different content on your site. This is all valuable information because it will allow you to build a mobile site or more specifically a smartphone site or tablet site that focuses on the content and information that users want or expect when they access your site from their device. What we are doing here specifically is tailoring the focus of your mobile site to specific audiences, rather than simply putting up a stripped down version of your standard website. It is always important to keep the user in mind when designing the device-specific experience around your brand’s content, products or information. Successful websites always optimize the content to improve the engagement. This has never been more important than in the mobile web experience. Staying on top of what your customers want and expect will help you provide a better experience for them as well as help set you apart from your competitors. Loyal customers are often the best referral source. If you found this information useful please subscribe to the Digital Media Branding Podcast on iTunes and share it with a friend. Join me next time where we’ll discuss the variety of options you can take to make your websites adapt to the multi-screen web experience. I’m Carlos Quintero owner and founder of MediaOnQ Thank you for listening.
13 minutes | Mar 31, 2013
How To Optimize Your Email Marketing Campaign
Hello and welcome to the , Episode 8 . Today, we are going to clearly define the which can immediately impact your campaign’s reach by helping you avoid the dreaded spam filter and getting more eyeballs on your content. We’ll also discuss the Email Marketing Metrics you should watch closely as these can help you grow your business by building relationships with your customers while you solidify your competitive barriers. Hello my name is ; I run a company in the Midwest called . Since 1997, I've been fortunate enough to help many different companies extend their brand's reach out far beyond traditional marketing. Leveraging technology has allowed me to help many small business owners; new business start-ups as well as large fortune 50 companies create profit centers around their brand's products, content and information. In my job, I work with many aspects of the digital space and I found it interesting how many of my clients as well as friends and family members misunderstand the notion of email marketing. This misunderstanding served as the inspiration for episode 8 of the ; . Let’s dive in. I decided to ask some of my friends and family members what’s their perception of email marketing. Most of them were pretty sure that email marketing was responsible for filling up their spam folder daily… The shocking truth is that they are not completely wrong. Some of you may disagree, and I am sure that I will get those emails but just about everyone I know has received one of those work from home emails that promise to show you how you can make a 6 figure income by simply working from home. Lots of these so called companies attract people by using or implementing some of the most advanced email marketing techniques, which unfortunately undermine the efforts and practices of ethical companies. I want to be clear. I am not saying that Email Marketing is Spam. These are two very different items that share some characteristics. Here are some examples of the shared characteristics between Email Marketing and Spam: Both are delivered via email and potentially can reach your inbox. Both may contain big or fatty subject lines. Both may contain information about a particular product or service. That’s where the similarities end and here’s why. The most important difference between email marketing and spam is that in an email marketing campaign the user has agreed to receive email from the sender. Users grant the permission usually through a registration process or by signing up for a particular site. In this example there is no such thing as an automatic subscription. Spammers on the other hand, build their email databases by purchasing email lists, steal email addresses or harvest them from websites through the use of grabbers from where ever they can find them. They then blast out email messages that fill up your spam folder. Another huge difference between the two is content quality. For a detailed explanation on content and content quality I’d recommend that you listen to my as I cover this topic in depth and share great tips on how to survive and stand out by leveraging your content. Legit email newsletters are tailored to the user’s interest, which is probably why they signed up in the first place. Spam on the other hand can be as plain as a single line of text or a single link. Newsletters tend to be well structured, well formatted and show off a good blend of text, images and sometimes-even video. One other significant difference between the two is personalization. Legit email newsletters are sent to one user at a time. You may have noticed that some spam has multiple recipients in the TO field of your email message. Legit email newsletters also address you by your name in a greeting message at the beginning of the content. In a Spam message you will not be greeted. Let me say that one more time. In a Spam message no one will greet you. So if you or your company is blasting out email newsletters or messages in bulk and not personalizing the content and greeting your recipient, you’ve categorized yourself as Spam. Fix this ASAP! One other thing to remember is to always include a way for users to unsubscribe. It is important to build relationships and trust with your audience. The ability for users to unsubscribe let’s your audiences know that you will not push your content, service or information on them if they don’t care for it. Now that we understand the differences between Spam and Legit Email Marketing Newsletters, let’s discuss the Email Marketing Metrics you should watch closely so you can grow your business, build lasting relationships with your customers and solidify your competitive barriers. So if you have a business with an online presence, you definitely need to have some sort of strategy in place to build up your customer email database. You’ll also need a newsletter. Newsletters can often times act as your first line of defense for your business. What I mean by this is, that say your website went down for any number of reasons…how would you then stay connected to your customers to reassure them that you have not gone out of business? You could do this through your newsletter. Also, let’s say that you launched a new product, service or published new information. It is fair to assume that your customers are not going to visit your website every day, every week or even every month. How then could you stay connected to your customers? You can do this through your Email Marketing Newsletter. An Email Marketing Newsletter is one of the ways that here at we help our customers build what we call an . is much more involved than an Email Marketing Newsletter and if you’d like to learn more about Active Brands, please visit . Now let’s assume that you’ve decided to start an Email Marketing Newsletter. You will want to pay close attention to six key metrics that will help you gauge the success of your campaign. The first of these metrics is the size of your email list or database. You need to continually grow this number. This is very important because you can expect to lose roughly 25% of your subscribers every year. Don’t be fooled by what might appear as a constant size to marketing list. The fact is that it is constantly shrinking. Wait. How is it that what I said makes sense? Well it’s simple really. Peoples lives’ changes constantly. For example, if your customer is say a college student, once they graduate they may simply stop using their school email address or no longer have access to that email account. Also, people change jobs or the technology they use. So have a strategy in place that allows you to continually grow your email database. The second metric that you should pay attention to is your “unsubscribe” number. A good rule of thumb is that if more than 5% unsubscribe, you need to segment your newsletter’s content to more specifically target your audiences. Having a highly targeted list with relevant content allows you to keep “unsubscribes” to less than 5% but more importantly it allows you to deliver content of higher value and interest to your subscribers. The third metric that you should pay attention to is the amount or percentage of successfully delivered email messages. This measures the number of emails that actually made it to someone’s inbox. The fourth metric you’ll want to keep an eye on is the percentage of opened emails. This can actually help you better understand your company’s perception by your subscribers. Generally speaking, the higher percentages tend to represent high company recognition and trust. The fifth metric you’ll need to monitor closely is the click-thru rate. The CTR or click-thru rate represents the number of people who received your email, opened it and clicked one of your links. You can use this number to measure the value your subscribers placed on your offering or content. The sixth and final metric on my list of important metrics to track is the conversion level. This might be for most a little bit more complex or involved. To do this we’d assume that your content would have it’s own landing page on your website. You would use your web analytics to help you track how many of the people who clicked on your email offer took action on your own site, by acting on the offer. If you’d like more information on this, please email me at and I will be glad to answer any questions or discuss it with you. So now we have a clear understanding of what is Spam and what is a Legit Email Marketing Campaign. We know that having a newsletter for our business with a strategy to grow that marketing list is a key ingredient toward building an . And we know, that we must monitor six key metrics in our email marketing newsletter campaigns. The last piece of this puzzle is to understand the . I will go over these nine rules in order of importance, with the most important first. Number One: Send emails only to those users who personally subscribed to your newsletter. Number Two: Make sure that your email newsletter covers content that people actually subscribed to. Number Three: Consistency; keep up with the promised consistency weather it is every week, every two weeks or once a month. Stick to your schedule. Number Four: Send your emails out somewhere between 5pm and 8pm on Tuesday through Thursdays or on Saturday afternoon. Number Five: Add a message at the top of your email that is similar to this; “to ensure you receive our emails, please add to your address book. Number Six: Make sure that the FROM filed contains the name of your company or the name of the person responsible for the newsletter and it correspondence. Number Seven: Always include two versions of your newsletter one in Plain Text and the other in HTML. If you choose to send an HTML version only of your newsletter expect that at least 5% will never open it or read it. Number Eight: Do Not Use All Caps or Multiple E
11 minutes | Mar 24, 2013
How To Optimize Your "About Us" Webpage
How To Customize Your About Us Page 3 Simple Steps to Transform Your About Page Into a Customer Generating Webpage Most of the about pages on the web can be summed up by one of these words; Boastful or Boring, maybe even a combination of the two. What do I mean? Here’s a real world example of what I am talking about. Example One: As a socially-responsible, global leader in design, manufacturing, distribution and aftermarket services, Flextronics is unique in its ability to provide end-to-end solutions through its innovative and proprietary systems—all to enhance customer competitiveness and success. Example Two: SEO Consult is the specialist search engine optimization division of Click Consult, who are a leading provider of search engine marketing solutions in the UK. Through a range of innovative, organic and ethical techniques, Consult have helped their 325+ clients reach highly targeted traffic, delivering a healthy ROI for both niche businesses and highly recognizable brands. Let’s analyze this. Notice the sort of language that was used: leader, unique, solutions, innovative, proprietary, leading. In other words puffery – well it is my opinion that it is simply puffery. Is there a real purpose in using these types of words? Vanity maybe, as the only purpose I see is to attempt to try and make the company sound as good as possible. So I’ll ask you. Do these types of words make the company sound great even if they are flat out vague and convey no clear meaning? What exactly does innovative, organic and ethical techniques mean, when there are no supporting sentences to explain how they relate to the company offerings? And who doesn’t instantly relate to end-to-end solutions, right? From a consumer’s perspective, we should remember that it really isn’t all that difficult to shop around on the web. So if you are not going to take advantage of the simple three step process to improve your about us page then try telling me and your consumers with simple nouns and verbs what you actually do. You don’t want your consumers and website visitors to think that you’ve strung together buzzwords into some sort of bureaucratic boilerplate. Think of it this way. You would never want someone maybe even your competitor to simply copy your text and swap out your company name and no one would know the difference. If that is you, please know that you have successfully positioned yourself and your online identity or business into the irrelevant category. When your web copy is boring and conveys no clear information it tells the reader that you have a boring company. I would guess that most of us don’t really like to invest our time or money on boring things. Let’s explore this concept even further. Why Do People Read Your About Page? I’ll tell you that based on my experience of more than 15 years in the multi-media branding industry it is NOT to know whether you are a leading provider of solutions, or an innovative distributor of systems. Believe it or not, people also don’t want to learn all about the history of your company, as many businesses out there seem to think. So why do people read your website’s about page? The answer is actually for the exact reason that people want to know more about anyone they’re considering forming a relationship with or giving money to. They Want To Know They Can Trust You They want to know that you are good at what you do. They want to know that you are the right business to buy from. They want to know that you will not rip them off…and so on. So here’s another marketing take-away for you. When you use verbiage like what we covered earlier, with all the fluff words…people will mostly think and feel all the opposite things you want them to. They won’t know they can trust you. They won’t know that you are good at what you do. They won’t know that you are the right business for them to build a relationship with and they won’t know that you will not rip them off. People are not stupid. They know that if you use fancy language to describe something, without saying anything clearly at all, that you’re probably being less than honest. We’ve all been exposed to politician’s right? It’s the same concept. It is important that if you care about your business. And clearly you do since you are listening to this podcast. You’ll want to take a dramatically different approach. Think of it as a face-to-face conversation with a new client, customer or prospect. This is one of the digital media branding rules that applies across all platform from your own website to your social media posts, web videos and mobile strategies. If you would not say it out loud to a customer or client in the real world, it should never be published or posed anywhere on the web. You Must Open Up To Your Customers Sounds a bit scary right? Most businesses out there are terrified about being open with their audiences or flat out think it is unprofessional to be human. This of course makes no sense. Being human is the only way to connect with your prospects. The really is that your prospects are human. You should not strive toward having people buy from you. You should work toward building your customer base and that requires a relationship, a connection…a human connection. With that let’s talk about the three simple steps toward making that human connection through your about us webpage. Step One - Tell A Story Stories are how we think, how we learn, and how we relate to each other. Remember this, your story does not have to follow the 3-act structure to be interesting. The important ingredient to your story is that it must tell. Tell us about your company, your customers and how it is that they’ve benefited from your service, product or information. Step Two - Make it About Something Interesting What do people find interesting? People find real people interesting. We are particularly interested in people when they are in situations similar to ours or have gone through processes or steps that we are considering. Our interest is most stimulated when we have lots of clear, concrete details we can latch on to. Taking this approach will help your story set itself apart in the minds of your website visitor, making it seem real, genuine and unique. Make sure to pack it full of details that are relatable so that your prospects can visualize it and remember to tie it back to your product, service or content offering. Step Three – Don’t “Photoshop” It As tempting as it is to try and cover up, or make your company appear to be flawless and perfect…remember who your customers are and know that they are probably less than perfect and more importantly, they don’t expect that there is a perfect company or brand out there. How can I say that with any certainty? Easy, we all know there is no such thing as a perfect business. In fact, it would be more beneficial to you to showcase how you overcome challenges. When customers know you’re real…it makes it easier for them to trust you and as an added bonus it will make your company stand out. Authenticity builds relationships, customers and trust. As people, we all crave authenticity. There it is, my formula for optimizing your “About Us” webpage. How does your about us webpage looking right about now? Does your “About” webpage humanize your company and inspire trust? Do you have any changes you’d like to make after listening to this podcast? Or perhaps you have a different point of view. If you do, I’d love to hear about it. You can email me at or visit and leave your feedback there. If you find any of this information useful, please subscribe to this podcast on iTunes, share it with a friend or leave a review. I’m Carlos Quintero owner and founder of Media On Q and the Digital Media Branding Podcast. Join me next time where we’ll continue to explore how to compete in today’s web economy through a variety of digital media branding techniques. Thank you for listening.
23 minutes | Feb 17, 2013
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