WEBSITE DESIGN & ONLINE MARKETING

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Customer Match with Google AdWords

Written by Andrew Wassenaar on March 16th, 2016.      0 comments

Untitled design (2)

At the end of 2015, Google announced something called ‘customer match’. Customer match is a facet of Google AdWords that allows you to target your advertising more effectively. It works by uploading a database of customer email addresses (minimum 1000) to the AdWords interface. When these email addresses are used to log in to a Google service (Google Search, YouTube or Gmail) they will be served targeted ads through the websites they are visiting. 

Customer match is an interesting form of marketing as it targets high value existing customers, as opposed to new opportunities. This can be very useful for things like reward programs. If you are marketing an airline for example, and your existing customers start searching for flights via Google search, you can use customer match to target them with advertising around air miles or the latest travel deals you’re offering. Using customer match can be tailored very specifically to customers that are most likely to click your link, because they’re already looking for something similar. If you think of traditional broad advertising as throwing a net out, customer search is more like spear-fishing. 

You may recall a similar product from early 2015 called RLSA (Remarketing lists for search ads), or ‘remarketing' . Remarketing targeted existing customers in a similar way, but got the database through different means. Instead of having a list of email addresses, it needed a tag on your website that would track visitors and install a cookie in their browser. Then Google could track the customer while they visited other websites and serve relevant ads as they browsed. Again, the minimum database size to use remarketing is 1000.

Both of these approaches have their benefits. Customer match is useful for split-testing, as it is easy to submit certain groups of email addresses to the target database, remove them to add a different group, and then compare the results. Remarketing doesn’t depend on obtaining an email address, so customers can be added to the database just by visiting your homepage, without filling out any forms. 

The question therefore is not ‘Which one should I use?’, but ‘How do I use both effectively?’. Obviously there is going to be an overlap when using both products. New email addresses that are obtained will most likely be from visitors to your website, in which case their information will be captured by both customer match and remarketing. If you are wanting to have only unique users to target, you would have to write exclusions for these lists. 

The point to take away here is that in order to maximise the potential of AdWords, you need to be constantly maintaining and tweaking the targeting. Much like a successful website, successful marketing is not something that can be left alone for months at a time. It must be dynamic, evolving with technology and with your business as a whole.

If you want to set up Customer Match, AdWords, or need help with digital marketing in general, get in touch for a free consult.

Topics: Google , Promotion
 

Is Facebook working for your business?

Written by Maria Lenzy on November 12th, 2015.      1 comments

According to Nielsen, 80% of NZ’s internet users are visiting Facebook. Making it the third most visited website in New Zealand. (Data from Alexa.) Given the popularity of the social network, it is no doubt why NZ businesses would be interested in Facebook Marketing. However, before you decide to spend money with Facebook, take a moment to read the following points.
 

1. Your audience is not your customer.

The platform is not under your control, so you need to realise that the list of fans and followers you are building are actually Facebook’s customers. Sure, they follow your business, but, Facebook has the complete control of the content visible to them. Relying on this platform for promotion alone might lead to a sudden downfall in sales.
 
Instead of trying to build your Facebook following, you want to use the platform to drive people to your website and perhaps sign up for your email list. Once you get those leads to your website, you will have the opportunity to offer them your services and create a life-long business relationship with them. 
 

2. Frustrating decrease on organic reach. 

As Facebook urges businesses to spend on advertising, organic reach has declined to 6% according to a study conducted last December. So your followers will see less and less of your page's posts on their timeline.

What does it mean to businesses?

Gone are the "glory days" of free engagement with your followers. Organic reach is the content you post to your page. However, with the recent change on FB’s algorithm the post you worked so hard on will only be visible to about 6% or less of your followers. If you want to reach more audience, then you will need to pay Facebook for ads.
 

3. Do fake fans really exist?

In July, BBC News released a negative report about Facebook. According to their investigation, businesses have wasted so much money on advertisements to gain “likes” from Facebook users who are not interested in their products. The same report also stated that early in 2012, Facebook admitted that up to 54 million profiles are fake. 
 

4. Be prepared for change! 

Facebook are aware of the power they have to show followers posts. Like Google, another big player in the online world, Facebook continuously change their algorithms, so certain types of posts get displayed more or less. For example, sometimes a post with photos is more engaging, and then the algorithm changes and posts with text and links are shown more. However, you still only will get about 6% reach through these organic methods. 
 

5. You can be more successful with diverse strategy

Facebook is the social media king, considering that it has a billion users around the globe. However, it’s not wise to put all of your eggs in one basket.

Using diverse strategy will provide your business with more success. you should think about website optimisation, SEO,  Google AdWords, email marketing, and other social media channels. So people who are genuinely interested in your business, see you everywhere as an expert in your industry.

If you are interested in including Facebook advertising in your overall marketing strategy, we can help you, click here to talk to us>>

 

Website Marketing 101

Written by Emily Hall on October 6th, 2015.      1 comments

webmarketing 101

"So what does marketing actually do?" As a marketer, this is a question I have been asked on more than one occasion. So for those of you who are too timid to ask; marketing is communication. Marketing connects your product or service to a potential customer. You are a problem solver, and you need to communicate that you are the one with the solution. Often in marketing you need to explain the benefits of your product. 

But here's the thing; everything that you do is marketing. From your brand, the way you answer the phone, to the images and language you use on your website. How you communicate is important, and can often be your first, and only, impression

In the past, consumers sought information through brochures and advertising. While this is still available and in some industries works quite well, there are problems using these marketing avenues. In terms of communication, this is shouting at your potential customer. There is little to no interaction between your company and the person viewing your ad. 

Using a knowledgeable salesperson is great to help you seal-the-deal, but getting the person in front of the salesperson can be challenging. 

The internet has changed the way we look for information. Consumers are now able to go to one place to find out about a business. That place? Google! As a search engine, Google has a global desktop search engine market share of 62.74%. It's possible to compare businesses and products in just a few clicks. To appear in a favourable position on Google, your business needs to have a good online marketing/promotion plan in place using AdWords and other paid search advertising. You also need to have a long-term SEO plan in place, and a good persuasive website. 

94% of internet users in New Zealand look for information about products online, World Internet Project NZ 2013. People aren't just looking to buy right then and there. They are looking for a comparison. They are looking and comparing products and services. Your website's job is to convince them to make a decision. 

Because, shopping is decision making. Your job, or your website's job, is to change someone from undecided to decided. Essentially you want to make them say yes, add to cart, fill in a form, call you for a quote. You don't want to spend time and money promoting your business using a service like Google AdWords to then have your website fail to convince your website visitor to take action. You should invest in a copywriter for your homepage and consider a dedicated landing page for your AdWords ad. 

If you are unsure where to start, we can help you. Zeald has teams of people who can assist with all the services mentioned in this article. Contact us for a free consultation. 

 

Google Partners Digital Bites

Written by Emily Hall on September 30th, 2015.      0 comments

google digital bites
As Google Partners, Zeald were  delighted to host 'Googlers' Laura Retsos & John Ball from Google Australia at an exclusive event in September 2015. The presentations were informative about how you can use Google tools to promote your website and then persuade your visitors to become customers once they hit your landing page/ website. 

John Ball,  Google AU/NZ Country Director - SMB, spoke about The NZ Digital Landscape. He covered some interesting statistics including how much mobile has changed the way we interact with businesses online. Google call these interactions micro-moments. 



Google Agency Development Manager AU/NZ, Laura Retsos, went on to talk about Your Business on Google. Laura covered the basics of Google AdWords and how Google online marketing tools can be effective for small businesses. 

Finally, Brent Kelly, Zeald Sales and Marketing Director, talked about Smart Results Online with Google. The biggest takeaway here is that you can spend time and money using all the tools Google can offer you, but still not get any results if your website doesn't convince your visitors to become customers. 

We will have video clips of the event available shortly, so stay tuned.  If you have any questions about how Zeald can help you with your online marketing or website, get in touch >>

Zeald Google Partners
L-R John Ball (Google AU), Brent Kelly (Zeald), Laura Retsos (Google AU) & Dave Cullen (Zeald)
 

View more images of the event

 

Why your small business needs landing pages

Written by Sarah Gleeson on September 10th, 2014.      0 comments

What is a landing page?

A landing page is a website page, which only has one function: to create leads via a form.

A home page that has a form on it is NOT a landing page, but a web page that’s only point is to have a form on it to gather visitors information IS a landing page.  

This is because a homepage has many more purposes than purely gathering information through a form.

Landing-page- why-you-need-one

Why should you have landing pages?

Landing pages are specific; they only have a form, and one call to action. Because of this, visitors are unlikely to get distracted and click on something else. It is a sure-fire way to generate leads efficiently.

They are also a quick and easy way to direct potential leads to complete a call to action.

For example, a company who is advertising their products or services will have a call to action which asks people to enquire about their service, or buy their product. This call to action would then be linked so that if clicked on, it would take the visitor directly to a landing page whose only goal is to complete the conversion by taking their information. 

web pages and landingpages

Click here to see an example of Zeald's Audit landing page.

 

Habits of ecommerce customers that you can benefit from

Written by Sarah Gleeson on August 12th, 2014.      0 comments

1. Buying products that have celebrity endorsements

It is common for people to be interested in products that their role models promote. This is especially strong when it seems natural that the celebrity would use the product themselves. For example, it would seem natural for wild-man survivalist, Bear Grylls to use a knife he promoted, compared to him eating at a fast food chain he promoted.  

Do you have a product that you know a customer uses? Write a blog about it, or post it on social media! For example, if you own a kids retail shop, and know that a celebrity mum uses a brand that you sell, let people know! You will most certainly catch the attention of customers who are a fan of the celebrity. 

bear grylls Topgear Zeald

2. Spending more to get free shipping

We’ve all been there, we have $25 worth of product in our cart, but free shipping is offered if you spend $30. What do you do? Some people will hunt around to find small something to bring their basket up to $30. Whereas other people may find your free shipping offer to be just the justification to spurge on the other product they were initially undecided on.

Because of this, you may want to consider the benefits of offering free shipping once a certain cart price has been reached. It is a great way to incentivise customers to spend that little bit more, without losing them to high shipping costs.

3. Spending more to save more

Offering a discount on one item because a customer has bought a number of other products encourages people to 'spend more to save more'. I have to admit, that while I know what shops are doing, I often fall for this. When you are already choosing between a few products, it does not take much for a company to grant you the permission you are internally looking for.  

Look to add this sales technique to your website seasonally when you are looking to get rid of excess stock, and to create hype via email marketing and social media when you do.

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All you need to know about inbound links

Written by Sarah Gleeson on July 11th, 2014.      0 comments

Link building is hard work, when done right. You don't want to resort to creating spam links. It is about continual updates, to keep content fresh and share worthy. 

Inbound links, also called back links, are valuable for any website. These are the links that come to your website from a different website. For example, if your business was a sports shop, a local rugby club website may link to your website to show their members where to buy their uniform. 

Why are they important?

Inbound links act as a direct pathway to your website. This means that a whole new audience can now find your website with ease. The amount of visitors that come through that link, depends on how much traffic the initial source receives.   

Another benefit of inbound links is that they serve to increase your SEO.

SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) is how well your website displays in a search engines unpaid results. To get more traffic, it is better to appear in the first page of results, as close to the top as possible. 

The more inbound links your website has, the more likely that your website will rank higher in search engines. This is because the inbound links are effectively telling the search engine that your website is trustworthy. Search engines (like Google) take this into account when ranking websites. 

However, not all inbound links are weighted the same. So it is not wise to create a bunch of spam websites to link to your website. 

Inbound links from other trustworthy websites are weighed much higher than inbound links from low ranked websites. For instance, an inbound link from Kings Plant Barn will be weighted higher than a small garden shop website whose website has not had any new content for years. 

Natural linking

It is important to ensure any inbound link seems natural. This means that the link should ideally be used as part of a sentence. This can easily be done with the use of a hyperlink. E.g. "Anthony’s Sports Shoes in Albany has a fantastic range of rugby shoes fit for any age this winter."

By placing a link within a sentence, customers are more likely to click on it. People are less likely to click on a link if it is just a URL, let alone a URL that they have to copy and paste into their browser. 

How to get inbound links

Since inbound links come from other websites, it can seem difficult to know how to get them. The best trick to get inbound links, is to have great content that people want to share with their audience. From there, you want to ensure people can find your content easily. This means, placing your content where your target audience is. Social media sites like Facebook and Twitter allow for immediate sharing, as well as related forums. Another fantastic idea, is to add your content to your email marketing and newsletters. 

Here are my top 5 ways to get inbound links:

  1. Create a blog 

    This is a great resource for getting original content out infront of people. What does your audience want to know about? What are problems they might be facing? Create blogs centered around their needs, this will not only ensure people come back to read your articles, but they are more likely to share your link to likeminded people. Make sure you send out your blogs to your customer database, or on social media to ensure more people see them. 

  2. Guest blog

    Guest blogging is where you create content for another website. This means that you able to talk directely to another websites' audience. Not only that, but you can direct the audience to your website for more information. For instance, a landscaping company could write up a blog for a gardening website, on the top new trends for utilising space. 

  3. Write case studies

    Case studies are a fantastic opportunity to promote your business without a heavy sales pitch. Find a client of yours who is happy to talk about their experience with your product or service. Any case study that makes your client or customer's business look good, will be sure to be shared by them too. Make sure you put your case studies on your website and on social media platforms too!

  4. PR

    Is your organisation doing something fantastic in the community? Why not write into your local newspaper with a story! Online articles best for SEO, but even a paper only version means that you get more brand awareness. Most newspapers have great SEO because of their rich content, so having them link their online articles to your website is sure to result in a heavy weighted link. 

  5. Create informative or fun videos

    Vidoes are one of the top shared types of content. Does your company have an upbeat personality? If so, create a video about your product/service, or team. If your business has more of a serious personality, why not create an informative video? Bunnings Warehouse creates fantastic DIY videos that are a huge hit with DIY rookies. 

Take home message:

Create new fresh content whenever possible. Post your own articles on social media platforms and in relevant forums. But resist spamming people, only post what you think is valuable and relevant to your audience.  



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Snapchat: What you need to know

Written by Sarah Gleeson on May 19th, 2014.      0 comments

You may have heard of Snapchat, if you are under 25 or have teenagers in the house, you probably have. Snapchat is an image and video sharing app for smart phones. The idea behind it is that images only last for a predetermined amount of time, and then close permanently. Receivers are unable to save or reopen any Snapchats they were sent, and the sender is notified if the receiver took a screenshot of their image. 

Alternatively, the user can add their image to their Snapchat Story, in which the image will be available for unlimited views by all their followers for 24 hours. Snapchat Story is simply a user's board which they can fill up with as many images or videos as they would like for all of their followers to see in a 24 hour period. 

Untill now, the app has only been used between friends, but businesses are now tapping into the marketing possibilities Snapchat provides.

How Snapchat has worked for some businesses

The nature of the snap only lasting a small amount of time creates urgency that demands full attention. This is a great motivator for any follower to find out more about your products and services.

Check out these businesses that are using Snapchat in their campaigns:

How to use Snapchat in your marketing campaigns

  1. Promotions
    • Send followers an in store or online promotion. Build the hype by making the offer exclusive by sharing a promotion code. Your followers will grow fast if they think your Snapchat is an account they MUST follow to get the best deals.

  2. Contests
    • Want feedback from your followers now? Send out a snap of your latest competition. For example, ask your followers to snap their ugliest shoes, worst shoes win a brand new pair for the following weekend! Post the competition on other social media platforms to grow your Snapchat follower base.

  3. Create buzz
    • Got a new product or service you want everyone talking about? Send a 10 second image to all of your followers. This would work especially well for a retail shop that just got the latest winter fashion must-haves in store.

  4. Reminders
    • Is the most hyped movie of the year set to come out this week? Remind people! Send out a Snapchat of the movie poster and the date of the first session. 

What businesses would Snapchat work for?

If your target market is 15-25 you should definitely consider Snapchat.

Using Snapchat in your marketing strategy is a great way to show customers you’re ‘cool’ without explicitly saying it. So if you’re having trouble connecting with your young clientele, Snapchat could be your way forward. 

A must do for the following business types:

  • Restaurants, cafes and bars
  • Retail outlets
  • Theme parks or entertainment providers incl. Cinemas, mini golf, swimming pools
  • Automotive (WOF’s, car maintenance)
  • Higher education providers
  • Pet shops or Zoo’s (people love a good animal pic!)

What to keep in mind before using Snapchat 

Snapchat is instant, so if you choose the wrong image or text, you cannot take it back once it is sent. You should also choose your Snapchat administrator carefully, as there is limited accountability if it all goes wrong.

It pays to keep in mind that Snapchat followers may reply, and the images they send back might not always be positive. In this case, block the user or ignore it. As with all social media, make sure you don't take negative feedback too personally.

How to use Snapchat

Part one: Download the free app from your Play Store or Itunes. 
Part two:Take the image. 

howto-take-a-snap

Part three: Tap the image to add words, decide how long you want to set the image for, then send it to your followers.


emilysnapchat
 

Kick start a contest in the build up to Christmas

Written by Sarah Gleeson on November 5th, 2013.      0 comments

 As people begin their Christmas present hunt, you want to showcase how you can meet their needs and now.  A great way to get your name circulating is to set up a contest. People are always looking for ways to tighten the belt around Christmas, so a contest that saves some money will always be a winner.

As Facebook changed its rules on contests lately, this would be a great medium to generate hype around your contest. Have a good read of the rules first!

 What's in it for me?

  • Sales
  • Leads
  • Referrals
  • Social media ‘likes’ or followers
  • Increase of social media presence (i.e. more people interacting with your page/profile)

Vital information:

  • Where is the contest being held? I.e. Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest
  • Start date and end date
  • What people actually have to do to enter? Buy your product, spend a certain amount, like your page, comment on a post, retweet, pin, submit a photo or post to your page
  • Contest conditions
  • How winner will be drawn
  • How and when winner will be notified by
  • What happens if winner is not able to be reached
  • How long will the prize last for? - is there an expiry date?
  • What your prize is- your product/service, or a product/ service that you don’t sell i.e. overseas trip or car

Once you have these sorted out, get your best copywriter to come up with an amazing spiel that will capture your audience’s attention. You really want to sell your idea and business, while also getting people excited. Linking the contest to your website is also a great way to create a flow on effect from the contest, to your website.

After kick starting your contest, it is important to keep the buzz up- remind people that it is going on, and what they can do to enter. Social media is great for this, as people interacting with the post or your page, will keep your page at the top of other people’s timelines. 

When the contest draws to a close, make sure to make a big deal out of the end result- this is your last contest post that *hopefully* a lot of people have become invested in, so make the drum roll a good one!

After the contest is over, don’t go quiet on the social media platform, hopefully you have got some more likes, so keep people talking by continually posting new things to bring people back.

Topics: Promotion
 

4 ways to keep your customers coming back!

Written by Sarah Gleeson on August 12th, 2013.      0 comments

Like most people, I am a creature of habit. I enjoy spending my money with companies which I know have exactly what I need. However, I am also at times forgetful, I know I loved a product, but will forget where I got it from. Part of optimising your website is having the ability to effectively drive business back to your website. Attracting a new customer costs five times as much as retaining an old one, but how do you hold onto them?

Here are some of my ideas for getting those customers clicking back to your website.

1. Coupons
These are a great way to get people coming back. This coupon may only last  3 months (or whichever time period you choose), but it serves its purpose of reminding customers that you are there. Consider the last time that you received a coupon; you probably printed it off and put it in your wallet or on the fridge for safe keeping. Then the next time you wanted that new hammer, or kids t shirt, you were reminded that you already had a helping hand and went straight back to the same website.

2. Deals after purchase
I was recently buying a present for a friend online. One day after the transaction, I was offered a discount on limited items within a small time frame. As I had only recently opened my virtual wallet, spending some more money at a discounted rate did not seem like a bad idea. The new deals had me thinking if there was another birthday coming up, so I had a good look and found a small gift for a birthday a month later. This is another way of getting repeat business, by offering customers new deals right now.

3. Birthday emails and vouchers
Birthday emails are a great way to nudge customers back to you, at a time when they are feeling particularly generous with their money. By gathering a customer’s information at the checkout, you are now able to add them to your email marketing database. Simply wish them a Happy Birthday, or even better, attach a small gift voucher. In doing this, you are reminding customers you stock products they like and have bought. You never know, you may be the only one who remembered their big day!

4. Post purchase emails
Think about the last time you went on a shopping binge, or bought a large gift; you probably felt a little guilty afterwards. This is problematic for online retailers because you do not want your customer to associate that feeling with you! Post purchase emails solve that problem. Send your customers product reviews, these  lower that negative feeling, by showing customers that other people just like them, have bought and loved their purchase. Encourage them to write a review too! Not only that, but thank them for their purchase, and loyalty; you can never have enough positive thoughts about your company.

 

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Christmas Promotion Ideas

Written by Emily Wilson on November 7th, 2012.      0 comments

Learn about Corporate Christmas Promotion and Gifts with Zeald BlogChristmas is just over a month away. You should already have some plans in place for your promotions, but if you need a few more ideas to increase your sales during December, and indeed throughout the year, here are some you could try:
 
  • Treat your clients by sending them a gift voucher or small gift as a thank you with their invoices. It will encourage return business and ensure your customer’s feel appreciated.
  • Offer a free gift-wrapping service - you can subtly brand the paper with your logo.
  • Give away a Christmas hamper for purchases during December.
  • Encourage customers to add $1 to their purchase for a charity you support and match it.
  • Think about how your customers might be shopping over this period - is your website friendly for their mobile browsing?
  • Keep your customers thinking about your brand. Sponsor an event that they are likely to attend over the festive season; or invite them to one you are holding.
  • Use the season as an opportunity to find out more about your customers. Engage with them on social media to find out what they enjoy doing during their time off or what is on their wishlist. Perhaps you stock that item?
  • Encourage spending with a free gift with purchases over a certain amount.
  • Encourage purchases with free delivery during December.
  • Don’t forget about post-Christmas shopping too. Run a 12 days of Christmas special from 25 December - 6 January. Integrate the promotion with your social media tools.
  • Have a longer returns policy over the Christmas season.
Topics: Promotion
 

How to write an effective unique selling proposition

Written by Casey Hartigan on October 1st, 2012.      1 comments

Your unique selling proposition (USP) is one of the most important parts of your homepage. Visitors to your website need to be able to tell almost instantaneously whether or not you will be able to fulfil their needs. An effective USP achieves this by telling the customer what you have to offer, and more importantly, what sets you apart from your competitors. It should be placed right at the top of your website so that it is one of the first things your visitors see. Follow the steps below to write an effective USP for your business.

1. Identify and define your target market

It is important to realise that you are not going to be able to serve every man and his dog. Before you can begin to sell your product or service to your visitor, you must define who it is you want to target. For example, if you are a caterer who solely caters for weddings, instead of targeting anyone who is looking for a caterer, you may choose to target people who are planning their wedding on a budget.

2. Identify the problem that your customers have and how you can solve it

If your website visitors didn’t have a problem, they probably wouldn’t be on your website! To make it clear that you are the correct place to be you need to spell out what problems you are able to solve. Let’s go back to the catering example. There are many people who will be looking for someone to cater for them, whether it be for a birthday party, funeral, work function or wedding. If you’re a caterer solely focused on catering weddings on a budget, then it is important to place emphasis on this. It’s important to remember that you can’t solve everyone’s problems! Be the best that you can at what you do rather than average at doing everything.

3. Point out what makes you different from your competitors

Pointing out what makes your business unique is one of the most important parts of your USP. Write down what separates you from your competitors. Are you the cheapest? Fastest? Most knowledgeable? Tell your visitors what sets you apart from other businesses who could fulfil their needs.

4. Write it out and refine it

Once you’ve figured out who your target market are, what problem you can solve for your customers and what sets you apart from the competition, it’s time to put it altogether in a short and sharp sentence or two. This process can take a while to get the final product, so give yourself plenty of time. Spread it out over a couple of weeks as fresh eyes are always best!

5. Put it on your website

Once you’ve finalised your USP, put it near the top of your website. If you have images on your homepage, try and link them in with your USP to give it more strength. You may find that after a while your USP will need refining again to keep it in line with the ever-changing ways of your business – if you find this is the case, just start again at step one and identify what changes need to be made.

 

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Get Your Business Seen - Use Video

Written by Casey Hartigan on July 17th, 2012.      0 comments

Video is becoming increasingly important when it comes to ranking in search results. YouTube is owned by Google and is one of the leading search engines in the world, so having video means you're more likely to get noticed. In fact, studies show that a page with video is 53 times more likely to be seen in search results (Forrester, 2010). However, choosing a subject for your videos can be quite daunting and many businesses tend to put it in the too-hard basket.

If you're selling products, consider making a short video of what the product is and how it's used, or give a short tour of your store if you have one. If you're selling a service, you could film some examples of your service or give tips and advice related to your industry. All of these ideas will help to create credibility and make sure your business gets seen.

When making a video, make sure that you keep it short and to the point. It's also important that it's of good quality. Ensure that you film in a well-lit room and that you keep the camera steady. If you're going to speak during the video, make sure the recording is clear and understandable. Then, once you've created your videos, read up on how to embed them on your website.

Free Zeald Website Audit and Consultation
 

Using email marketing to promote your Website

Written by David Kelly on May 3rd, 2011.      0 comments

Email marketing is an extremely powerful website promotional tool. It is one-to-one direct marketing that is personalised, with well-defined targets, where the results are instant, accurate and easy-to-understand.

So as you can imagine, many companies and individuals have started sending out promotional emails to every email address they can find. Just about everyone hates unsolicited email- or SPAM. Many people have associated email marketing with SPAM, but it is important to understand that not all email marketing is SPAM.

It is possible to use email marketing legitimately, without fear of being banned by your Internet Service Provider (ISP). For instance, people who have agreed to receive promotions from you, and where there is a facility for them to request they don’t wish to receive another message from your company, is perfectly fine. This is called ‘opt-in’ email marketing.


An important website rule is:

Get your visitor’s email address whenever you can!


Once you have a visitor’s email address you can encourage them to return time and again to order from you, for little or no extra cost.

 

Text/HTML

The first thing you need to understand before creating and sending email promotions is the difference between text and HTML emails.

They look different– text-based emails are written in plain text (type)– they do not contain any formatting. You cannot bold or underline anything or change the font in a text-based email.

HTML emails, on the other hand, are written using a markup language, which resides in the backend code of the message. This allows you to use an array of ‘formats’ (typeset/design) in your email.

Text or HTML… which is better?

Some people advocate text-based emails, because they are quick to download by the recipient, are reliable for displaying correctly and do not carry ‘viruses’ or ‘worms’ that may be embedded in the code of an HTML email.

Those who advocate HTML-based emails prefer them for their ‘attractive’ qualities and readability. Most email viewers can display text or HTML-based email perfectly.

Some people argue that email marketers get better results using text-based emails and some people argue the other way. The results differ, depending on your ‘opt-in’ email list.

Test both types of emails and monitor the results. For example, send plain text messages to half your list and HTML email to the other half. Then compare the results. Whatever works best– use it!

 

Segmentation

One of the keys to any successful email marketing campaign is the targeting of your promotions. You can target your promotions by segmenting your customer database as much as possible. Break your customer lists down into groups. You may want to ‘segment’ your customer database based on characteristics such as:

  • Existing customers versus prospects
  • Customers based on geographical location
  • Existing customers– segmented by the products they have bought
  • Age
  • Sex (male/female)

Once you have your customers segmented you can then target your promotions at those segments at will. For example, if you are writing a promotion for your existing customers, you may concentrate on certain value-added cross-sells, or up-sells, that you have on offer. A promotion aimed at new members may promote a new member offer.

 

Personalisation

Just as in other forms of direct marketing, one of the interesting areas of email marketing is personalisation. In general, the more personalised an email is, the higher your success rate will be.

Remember, the most incredible ‘sound’, with the most impact on any person, is the sound of their name. Good email marketing packages will allow you to heavily personalise your emails. Some of the most common things that you will want to use to personalise your emails are:

  • First name
  • Last name
  • Address
  • City or location
  • Last product or service purchased
  • Date of last purchase
  • Most common product category of purchase


Depending on the abilities of your email marketing program, any information you have collected about a prospect can be used to personalize your email promotions to them.

Find Out How to Create an Email Marketing Campaign

 

How to Create an Email Marketing Campaign

Written by David Kelly on April 27th, 2011.      0 comments

In The Benefits of Long Sales Copy on your Website we covered the merits of long copy versus short copy, and how long copy usually outsells short copy. With email promotions, you need to perform more of a balancing act.

Email promotions should be ‘to-the-point’ and not long-winded. Your email promotions should say just enough to get the purpose of your communication across. Remember, your customer’s email inbox is getting busier and busier. Your customers will soon know whether you get to the point in your emails, or bury your message in unnecessary paragraphs or pages of hyperbole.

Email promotions that get to the point are far more likely to be of interest to your readers on an ongoing basis. Your recipients will open and read your email if they know they are going to be able to quickly satisfy their curiosity.

However, your emails still need to be written in a warm, friendly and personable way. Give your regular email promotions their own “voice” and character (which should not be too removed from your brand’s personality). Make them easy for your customers to relate to. Email is a very personal medium and a personable approach to email always works best. Remember, one-to-one!

Email promotion components:

  • From line
  • Subject
  • Headline
  • Greeting
  • Opening hook
  • Call to actions
  • Body
  • Sign-off
  • Signature
  • Opt-out information

 

From line

The ‘From’ line is the most important part of the entire email, and despite what some email marketers think, the ‘From’ line is even more important than the ‘subject’ line. If you think about when you are scanning the new email messages in your own inbox, you would usually run your eye down the ‘From’ column, first seeing if you recognise the people your messages are from.

So when you set the ‘From’ line in your email promotions, use something people recognise. If your recipients will recognise your individual name, then use your name. But if it is your company name that they are more likely to recognize, use that. You can even use a combination of both – e.g., “David Kelly – Zeald”. Personalise and perfect it; perhaps use the word ‘team’ in your ‘From’ line; for example– ‘The Zeald Team’.

 

Subject lines

The second most important part of your email is the ‘Subject’ line. It should capture the attention of your reader and draw them into opening your email. The ‘Subject’ line of an email is similar to an advertising headline, except it needs to be more ‘real’. It won’t be as ‘hard-sell’ as an advertisement headline typically is. Remember, just about everyone hates SPAM, so make sure your ‘Subject’ line does not look like a SPAM message, otherwise it will be deleted, or worse still, it won’t even arrive in your customer’s inbox (thanks to Spam filters). Make sure you go easy on CAPITAL letters too, as they can look tacky and Spam-like. Your ‘Subject’ line should be short, friendly and to the point.


Some common themes for subject lines:

  • Sell a major benefit
  • Offer a solution to a problem
  • Ask a question
  • Make an announcement


Personalise your 'Subject' line by using your customer’s name. This will often drastically improve your results.

As always make sure you test and measure everything– results always speak for themselves– so do what works!

 

Headline

You may decide to start your emails with a headline. You can use all the techniques for these headlines that we outlined earlier in the ‘Load’ module.

 

Greeting

Personalise your greeting as much as possible. Use the recipient’s name. You may decide to use either an informal and friendly greeting (“Hi David”), or be more formal (“Dear Mr. David Kelly”). It is generally accepted that informal and friendly works best when writing emails. Consider using phrases like, “Good morning/afternoon/evening/”, as these have a nice, warm feel to them, and indicate a degree of familiarity.

 

Opening hook

Your ‘opening hook’ is what should hook your reader into your email. Make it clear right up-front what you are writing to them about and explaining why they should read the rest of your email. Remember, they will be thinking – “So what’s in it for me” (WIIFM)? Show the reader what they will get out of reading your email.

 

Call to action

This is when you state exactly what you want your prospect to do. In an email promotion it is important to include a ‘call to action’ very early in your message. This gives a recipient the opportunity to respond immediately without reading through the rest of the email. In this initial ‘call to action’ you should not use ‘hard sell’– merely point them in the direction they can go if they are interested in your offer.

You should look to include your call to action throughout your message. But the first ‘call-to-action’ should be very ‘soft’ and your final call-to-action will be the complete opposite, almost with a sense of urgency. Summarise the main benefits for responding to your ‘call-to-action’, and then state exactly what you want them to do.

 

The body

The body is the main part of your promotional message. Make sure you focus on the benefits you are offering. It must be obvious what’s in it for them. Use bullets to outline the benefits clearly. Your body should be around two to four paragraphs at the most. Use short, punchy paragraphs and include lots of white space around the paragraphs.

 

Sign-off

Use a friendly sign-off such as:

  • Best regards
  • All the best!
  • Take care
  • Yours faithfully (more formal)

Signatures

Email signatures are extremely powerful, and are highly under-rated marketing tools. The next section looks at email signatures in detail.

 

Opt-out information

Don’t forget to include your opt-out information at the end of your email. This information gives your recipient the ability to opt-out from receiving further communications from you. It also shows you have their best interests at heart- that you listen to your customers!

Most email marketing programs will automatically include this information at the end of all emails you send.

 

Formatting

When communicating by HTML email, there are a number of formatting options that will help make your writing more interesting:

 

Fonts

Make sure you use a black font on a white background– anything else is very difficult to read. Do not use a ‘fancy’ font. Generally, Serif fonts are used for print and Sans-serif fonts are used for computer screens. The most common Serif font is Times New Roman. Common Sans-serif fonts are Arial and Verdana.

 

Emphasis

Use bold, italics, underlines and font colours for emphasis, but use them sparingly. Tables and borders can be used to frame specific sections of text that you want to emphasise. Always use emphasis to drive-home your critical points.

 

Lots of white space

Use lots of white space– this makes everything easier to read and is generally more attractive to the eye.

 

Vary paragraph lengths

Vary the length of your paragraphs as well– this keeps things interesting. Make sure your sentences are not wider than 55-60 characters across the page– more than this is difficult to read.

 

Graphics

Only include a graphic or illustration if it is relevant and supports your message. Graphics, for the sake of graphics, are a waste of time as they increase the size of the email and take longer to load. Your recipient might get tired of waiting and hit the delete key.


If you use plain-text email, formatting will be almost non-existent. Again, make sure you use lots of white space and keep paragraph lengths really short. Make sure your sentences don’t exceed 55-60 characters across the page– more than this is difficult to read. Use capitals (sparingly) for emphasis only.


And finally - don’t forget to use your spell checker!

 


 

Zeald Example Email Marketing Campaign


OK, let’s try putting everything together, by writing an email promotion to be sent to the Zeald customer base.

Zeald has a new product called ‘Zeald Email Marketing’. This module plugs into the Zeald Website Adminstration Software and allows the merchant to send email promotions to their ‘opt-in’ email database, as well as to track and measure their results.

In this section we will draft an email promotion that can be sent to the Zeald customer-base, promoting the new Email Marketing module.


From Line: David Kelly – Zeald


Subject: New Product Launch – Low-Cost Email Promotion

 

[Element #1 - Headline Start]

Do you collect your customer’s email address? If ‘yes’, you could be using email as an extremely low-cost way of advertising and promoting your company’s products and services to your customers.

[Element #1 - Headline End]

 

[Element #2 - Greeting]

Good afternoon [Customer First Name],

[Element #2 - Greeting End]

[Element #3 – Opening Hook]

You have probably heard of email marketing. Many people have been talking about the power of email and how you can use it to send out monthly, or even weekly, promotions to your customer database, for little or no cost!

[Element #3 – Opening Hook End]

 

[Element #4 – Call to Action (soft)]

The great news is that Zeald has just released a new module for the Zeald E-business Suite. It is called ‘Zeald Email Marketing’ (creative huh!). Jump straight to all the details.

[Element #4 – Call to Action (soft) End]

 

[Element #5 – The Body]

The one question I always have when using any form of marketing or promotion is – can I measure the results? Otherwise– how do I know that the latest marketing or promotional tip is not just the latest craze or buzz? I need to know if it has made a positive impact on my bottom line? If you can’t measure your results then you should probably not bother doing it– especially if you have a tight advertising budget.


The great thing about the new Zeald Email Marketing module (in my humble opinion) is that everything can be tracked and measured. You can measure:

  • how many people have read your email promotion
  • how many people clicked on your promotional offer
  • how many people purchased a promotional item
  • what the total value of the purchases were.


This means that you can run email promotions and continually improve them by measuring their results. But ultimately, you can work out whether it is worth going to all the time and effort with an email promotion in the first place.

[Element #5 – The Body End]

 

[Element #5 – Call to Action (close)]

[Customer First Name], many organisations are using email marketing to generate great advertising and marketing results, and now you have access to an excellent email marketing tool that is completely tied-in to your website. Find out more about the Zeald Email Marketing module and sign-up for a FREE test drive.

[Element #5 – Call to Action (close) End]

 

[Element #5 – Sign Off]

All the best with your future endeavours!


With regards,

[Element #5 – Sign Off End]
[Element #6 – Signature]

David Kelly

CEO – Zeald


Zeald E-business Hotline

Your 9am – 5pm access to a Zeald Internet consultant.

If you have any questions or concerns, please call 0800 72 55 23.

We would love to be of assistance!


---

Zeald – “Websites that Work!”

E-Centre

PO Box 102-904

North Shore Mail Centre

Auckland

New Zealand


Ph: +64 9 415 7575

Fax: +64 9 443 9794

Mbl: (NZ) 021 434 105

Web: www.zeald.com

[Element #6 – Signature End]

 

[Element #6 – Opt Out Information]

I no longer wish to receive promotional communications from Zeald.

[Element #6 – Opt Out Information End]
 

 


 

Promotional Signatures


Email signatures are one of the most highly ‘under-rated’ marketing tools on the Internet. Your email signature should appear at the bottom of every email that you send. Most signatures contain the sender’s contact details, but why not make your signature a small advertisement? This advertisement goes out to every single person you ever send an email to. These small signatures can have a huge impact on your website’s success and your bottom line!


So how do we write a great email signature?

The first key, as always, is ‘know your target customer’. If you don’t know this by now, then you have a problem. What are your target customer’s goals? What do they want to achieve? What need do they want to satisfy?

Your email signature should be based around a great headline that will grab your target customer’s attention. It should focus on the strongest benefits that fit into your target customer’s goals, problems or needs. Use your unique selling proposition (USP) as the basis for the majority of your signatures.

Straight after your headline should be the ‘call-to-action’. Your ‘call-to-action’ should be completely focused on getting your target customer to click-through to your website, where you can hit him/her with your full sales copy… or alternatively, to call you on the phone.

It is absolutely vital that you have a number of different email signatures. Email signatures are generally not a ‘one size fits all’ solution. Think about it– you don’t want to send an email to an existing customer with a signature that promotes a product that they have already bought from you. Instead, you would present a signature that focuses on providing them with the information they need to obtain customer service, support, or up-selling them to other products and services you offer.

For the sake of simplicity let’s focus on a ‘signature’ that promotes your core product. Let’s look at the headline and opening hook that we used in the ‘Load’ module:


---

STOP! Is Your Website Delivering Amazing RESULTS?


Many websites are a complete waste of time and money because they don’t deliver results! BUT if you have a good product or service, it is possible to produce a website that generates excellent results; a website that sells!

---


This can be used as the basis for a promotional signature. In the following way:

---

David Kelly

CEO – Zeald


Is Your Business Website Delivering Amazing RESULTS?

Your business website should make sales or generate enquiries for your products or services. Is Yours?

If not… it will be because of one of three simple reasons.

Visit our website or call 0800 72 55 23 to find out why.


---

Zeald – “Websites that Work!”

E-Centre

PO Box 102-904

North Shore Mail Centre

Auckland

New Zealand


Ph: +64 9 415 7575

Fax: +64 9 443 9794

Mbl: (NZ) 021 434 105

Web: www.zeald.com

 

As with all promotional writing, you will want to review and sharpen your signature until it is perfect.

 


 

Tracking & Measuring


Finally, you need to track and measure your email marketing results. The basic figures that you will want to track are:

  • Impressions – the number of people that your email was sent to
  • Click-throughs – the amount of click-throughs to your website that you received from your emails
  • Conversion rate (visitors) – the percentage of click-through visitors that placed an order, or made an enquiry
  • Enquiries/Orders – the number of enquiries or orders placed by visitors, generated by your email.


Most good email marketing systems will provide you with the facilities to track and measure impressions and click-throughs. Unless the email marketing system is completely integrated with your website, it will not be able to measure the conversion rate and enquiries… or orders. The Zeald Email Marketing Manager measures all these key metrics including the exact value of the purchases made.


If you are interested in using email marketing to promote your organisation talk to your E-Business Consultant or the Support Team about the Email Marketing Manager.

 
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