22
Apr

Internet Advertising: A Timeline

In order to gain a deeper understanding of internet advertising, it’s necessary to dig into some detail on the process. What makes some internet advertising projects outperform all the rest in terms of client satisfaction, ranking, and overall ROI? It helps to have a well-designed product from the start, good communication between the advertising agency and the client, and an acknowledgement of the critical steps along the way. It can be tempting to skip a step to save money, or meet a launch date. The information outlined here will help you resist the urge to cut the budget or the timeline. Whether you are an advertising agency, a client or customer, understanding the timeline from the first concept meeting to launch, tracking and testing is invaluable.

 

Internet Advertising Campaign Launch: A Timeline

 

Milestone: Setup

Setting up the process right from the beginning avoids all number of problems. In this step, the advertising agency sets up an initial meeting based on the client’s availability. Listening is a critical skill for the agency, and clearly communicating needs is critical for the client. Based on the client’s goals, the agency goes back from the initial meeting to conduct further research.

Milestone: Creative Process

As the process continues to the creative side, the amount of involvement and work increases. Initially, the agency will select one or more advertising media to develop a concept around. Multiple iterations of these concepts might be reviewed, with the client providing input along the way. The creative process also involves the very practical step of selecting “Ad Creatives”, or key words used in pay-per-click advertising campaigns. Spending some time optimizing and targeting the keywords for the particular industry is well worth the return on investment in terms of converting customers.

As the creative process goes from concept to reality, programmers and coders start to get involved and discrete web pages will be developed, such as landing pages. Those pages will need more detailed review from the client, and as the coding and graphics start to come together, timely review by the client is critical to the project staying on-schedule. As graphic and written content starts to be added the internet advertising project really starts to take shape. Review and final approval of multiple webpages can take substantial time, especially if content is highly technical, specialized or legal review is required.

Milestone: Integration

While the level of effort throughout the integration process never really tapers off, different people within the agency and the client’s organization may start to engage. Once the internet advertising campaign is approved, the client provides access for the advertising agency to access required web hosting services . The agency proceeds to run a series of tests to help analyze how well the advertising campaign is performing online. These metrics include Google analytics to help analyze web traffic, conversion tracking to measure how many visitors to the site purchase a product or subscribe to a service. For the advertising agency, the integration milestone also involves integration of the overall online advertising scheme with existing customer databases and information.

 

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14
Apr

Lean Landing Page + Book Promo

If you’ve been curious about attending the Lean Landing Page workshop, let us change your interest into excitement by offering a 66% one time discount.

That’s right, we’ve negotiated with the folks at HackerLab so that on April 28th you can attend Lean Landing Page for the special price of just $19.00. As Billy Mays would say: But wait, there’s more! We want to make attending the class such a high value to you that we are also including:

  • 1. $100 Adwords Account Credit
  • 2. FREE signed, pre-release copy of Aaron’s upcoming work “Click Into Lead”
Free Book$100 AdWordsAttend Now
BookCoverImage (1)google-launches-adwords-credit-card-for-small-british-businesses (1)leanlandingpage-200x175

Including the 66% course discount, get this unbeatable $153.98 value when you purchase your ticket through HackerLab.

31
Mar

Google Adbirds

Totaly not an April Fools joke, today we were presented with a new type of Ad within adwords: “AdBirds”. A yellow call to action bar proclaimed: Let your ads take flight with AdBirds. When clicked, it allows the selection of an ad group and states “A new ad format that takes your campaign to new heights by placing ads on real birds. Select your bird and write your ad. Then, you’re ready for takeoff.”

Screenshot_6

The available choices are Sparrow, Owl, Duck, Eagle, Pdegeon and Pengiun, each with their own benefits! We’re split testing Eagles and Sparrows and will post results.

6
Mar

Lean Landing Page Returns

After a near 8 month hiatus, It’s back and leaner than ever.

Lean Landing Page is a must-attend event for small business leaders. Maybe you don’t have a landing page for your business, or don’t know where to start. Maybe your business has been online for years and you need to overhaul your site with some new ideas to gain some presence on the internet.

An incredible value for any entrepreneur, executive or owner looking to try new ideas or scale existing ones, Lean Landing Page will give you the advertising edge you need to outperform your competition. Gain valuable insight into how to use your landing page to get better visibility for your brand. We will teach you how to design your landing page to grow your customer list, generate leads and connect with new business partners. You will learn how to design and develop a landing page for maximum online exposure. You will learn enough to do it yourself or whether the scope is complex enough that you should hire a consultant.

Taught in-person by Aaron Opfell, 8 year internet direct response advertising veteran and founder/CEO of SearcherMagnet, this class will save you thousands of dollars because you will leave knowing where to target your limited resources, and:

  • learn about landing pages and website design
  • which landing page platform may be right for you
  • how to develop a unique selling proposition (USP)
  • how to develop copy and taglines around your USP
  • how to use your landing page to drive leads or conversions
  • how to test your landing page to learn about your customer
  • how to get a landing page up with minimal cost

Are you ready to get started?  Register for Lean Landing Page today!

Class Summary:


Lean Landing Page Bootcamp
Internet Marketing Techniques coupled with Lean Marketing Principles. Loosely based on Lean Startup Prinipals, Aaron Opfell, CEO of SearcherMagnet walks you through dos and donts of creating a Unique Selling Proposition and a Landing Page.
Starts: 03/24/2014 6:00PM

Ends: 2014-03-24:00.000
Duration: 02:00

1715 I Street
Sacramento, CA
95814
USA
4
Mar

Jumpstart Your Advertising Campaign with Corporate Video Packages

Online advertising is more than setting up an AdWords account or redesigning some graphics on your webpage.  It’s about keeping current with technology and developing multi-media advertising to use on multiple platforms.  Today’s businesses need expert video production services to launch advertising on everything from television to email marketing to YouTube.

Stress Free Video Production

Don’t worry about all the elements of full-scale video production.  We offer one of the premier full studio spaces you’ll find in the greater Sacramento area.  Our space can be used to film high quality digital videos with customizable backdrops and an array of professional lighting and recording equipment.

Whether you’re looking for the complete corporate video package, or a short online promotional video, our team is ready to go from planning to production at your pace.  We offer:

  • Video Testimonials  Film a 3-6 minute video to feature on your webpage to convert new customers.
  • Video Biography  Produce a 2 minute video biography to help your company win its next big contract or help you land your next job
  • Television / YouTube Commercial  Produce a 60 second commercial for broadcast television or internet marketing.
  • Business Card Video – Film a 15 second digital video business card, ideal for appending to email and social media postings.

 

Preparing for the Video Shoot

We’ll help you prepare for your video shoot, including concept development, storyboarding, script writing and editing.  Our talent acquisition team can arrange for actors, props and custom requests.  When you choose our studios to film your corporate video, you’ll also get pre-production access to the set, including a green room, changing room, makeup station, kitchenette, and conference room.

Post-Production and Advertising

Your completed digital video can be used for a variety of advertising purposes.  Depending on your budget and intended use, we can produce a final video that takes advantage of digital distribution and online exposure.  Our team members are also familiar with social media and online advertising, so your final digital video can be used to jumpstart your advertising campaign:

  • Convert More Customers Showcase videos on your landing page to generate leads and close the sale with remarketing or offline conversion.
  • Cloud-Compatible Advertising Reach to the clouds and distribute your digital marketing without expensive servers and equipment.
  • Advertising on YouTube YouTube Pre-roll advertising shows your digital video to millions of potential customers online.
  • Microsite Products  Drive traffic directly to your website using a dedicated microsite that hosts your digital video.

Build your company’s image and keep up with the changing technology.  A member of our creative design team today is ready to get you started today on your digital video marketing solution.  Contact us at web form/email or call us at 916-905-7265 for a free quote.

3
Feb

Measuring the Success of AdWords for Converting Offline Sales

AdWords online advertising strategies sell products and services through direct online sales, but what about the users who leave a website without making a purchase?  Gathering data on those potential customers and specifically targeting them is a critical way to drive offline sales.  There are many channels for offline conversion, including phone calls and in-person sales.  Learn how to use AdWords to convert Offline Sales to refine your sales funnel and maximize your advertising dollars.

How AdWords Tracks Offline Conversion

AdWords tracks each person who is driven to your website by clicking on an AdWords ad.  To accomplish this, the system assigns a unique identification number, or a “GCLID”.  AdWords stores that unique ID in a database, along with any other information entered into a contact form.  The data can be used for sales team members to follow up with offline marketing.  uid-adwords-offline-conversion-tracking-600x564

Who Uses Offline Conversion?
Businesses who rely on lead generation to make sales can use offline conversion. But the ones who can particularly benefit from it are those who offer products and services with longer sales cycles. How customer data is stored and managed is also important to consider. Businesses that already have implemented customer relationship management (CRM) technology will be able to easily integrate offline conversion into their sales cycle.

Modifying AdWords Campaigns Based on Offline Conversions

Customer feedback is critical for any business, and armed with data in hand, you can really improve your ROI for your AdWords campaigns.  The AdWords tracking database allows you to record the unique ID, along with other information such as date and time of sale, keywords, customer demographic, geographic location and time of day.  As your marketing team follows up with those leads offline, the outcome of each converted offline sale is uploaded back into the AdWords campaign to improve your results.  You may find interesting trends, such as customer age and keywords that link to particular types of offline sales, such as phone sales.

Tracking Offline Conversions

First, decide what kinds of offline conversion are useful for you to track.  This could be dependent on the type, size and staffing of your business.  There is no limit to the number of offline conversions you can measure.  Here are some examples:

  • Sale made by phone
  • Sale made by fax
  • Sale made in store

Once you have selected one or more offline conversions to track, update the code on your website to ensure you track the GCLID associated with the online lead that produced the offline sale.  For a more comprehensive approach, update all relevant webpage templates to ensure you can track future conversions without adding code to individual pages.

Optimizing Your AdWords Campaign

Anyone can set up an AdWords campaign and cast a wide net based on certain keywords or customer demographics. But knowing what factor or combination of factors led to an eventual sale can help you optimize your AdWords budget.  You’ll be able to optimize your bid strategy and cost-per-click based on actual sales performance. For example, you can:

  • Show certain types of ads to reach certain demographics
  • Target ads to show at certain times of day
  • Show certain ads only in certain geographic locations

Tracking conversion can also help you identify the exact keywords that are driving sales. You can adjust your advertising budget to increase spending on particular keywords — and you can monitor and adjust for the trends over time. Want to learn even more? Check out the Google Support site to learn more about search funnels and how to read conversion reports.

6
Jan

Why a fresh Remarketing Strategy should be one of your 2014 resolutions

It’s the start of a new year, and you have fine-tuned your marketing campaign. Traffic is up on your site, and yet that upswing in clicks isn’t translating into an upswing in sales. Users are perusing, even filling their shopping carts, yet when it comes time to spend their dollars – they disappear. What’s the problem?

The problem is that you don’t have an effective remarketing strategy. With just a few minor tweaks to that already fine-tuned system, you can target users based on the pages they have already visited and convert them into users who click where it counts.

Remarketing stretches advertising dollars by converting sales that otherwise would have been lost. By showing targeted ads to people that have previously visited your site, you encourage them to return even if they are browsing around elsewhere. Remarketing allows you to choose what kind of ads are displayed to users based on which specific pages of your website they have visited in the past.

Take the user who filled their shopping cart yet neglected to make a purchase. Through a remarketing strategy, follow up with these users with ads that offer additional incentives for completing their purchase. It’s like offering someone who might potentially purchase 10 boxes of a pasta a discount on alfredo sauce.

Once a user has made a purchase, you can exclude them from your broader marketing strategy. Cull the herd for a higher ROI, and you end up saving some cash by targeting a more focused group of likely spenders. Advertising macaroni noodles to someone who just purchased those 10 boxes is a waste of valuable dollars.

But what about those users still in the stage of “window shopping”? Remarketing allows you to figure out the type of product your visitor wants, and offer them ads on related products based on which of your pages and products they have already viewed. For example, if a user views your penne pasta page, perhaps you offer them an ad for rotini, or marinara sauce.

For those potential buyers who have yet to find your product or service, try search remarketing. By targeting keywords related to your product, you can grow your brand by reaching out to potential customers who are already looking for you – they just don’t know it yet. Maybe a potential customer is searching for penne pasta, they just haven’t found your penne pasta. Search remarketing is like a gentle tap on the shoulder: Hey, we hear you’re in the market for Italian food – check us out!

Social networks have rolled out their share of updates this year to help advertisers take advantage of remarketing. Some of the new ad units are designed to blend right into the interface so mobile device users may not recognize the feeds are ads.

Twitter Timelines – After the company’s IPO in October, they launched promoted accounts and started featuring photos and Vine videos on Twitter timelines.

Instagram Direct – Instagram’s co-founder Kevin Systrom announced the launch of a feature called “Instagram Direct” that sends photos and videos directly to a user’s inbox. Facebook Video Engagement – It’s not just about the user making a purchase. Getting videos posted on Facebook helps convert people to be your brand advocates.

Google +Post Ads – Google has started testing a feature called +Post Ads, which will allow brands to take quality Google+ posts and promote them across the Google Display Network.

Pinterest API –Pinterest already has over 70 million global users, making it the third most popular social network. CEO Ben Sibermann introduced price alerts in August and launched promoted pins in September 2013.

Any smart marketing strategy involves a remarketing strategy. By factoring in previous online behavior, you can target particular types of customers (and potential customers) and get a bigger bang for your marketing buck. It works across an array of industries, too. Tag your pages, create a list of keywords, revamp your social media strategy and watch the queue to your virtual register grow.

6
Jan

Location Based Marketing Hot for 2014

Is your advertising strategy ready to ring in the New Year? As we take stock of our accomplishments and look forward to 2014, let’s resolve to improve our online marketing strategies. Digital advertising has been growing with leaps and bounds, but so has the amount of information available online. How can you make sure your business message is not lost in the information overload? Get schooled on the hottest digital marketing strategies for 2014!

Location Based Marketing

Over 8 million Americans purchased or upgraded mobile phones this holiday season. Retailers predict that the number of online transactions using tablets and smartphones will double, as people try out their new gadgets, download apps, play games and make purchases.

What’s really going to drive spending in the New Year is location-based marketing. The technology uses Global Positioning System (GPS) coordinates to show geographically relevant information on people’s mobile devices. That information translates to major buying power — it can include restaurant and retail store locations, entertainment venues and other attractive places for consumers-on-the-go to spend their money. Many social applications like Facebook already include Check-In and other similar location tracking features, which launch automatically as users reach a destination. Mobile marketing will continue to expand in 2014 as we see further development of mobile purchasing apps like Google Wallet.

Over 80 percent of mobile phone users already keep their devices at their bedside table or in their hand as they watch TV.   But as technology improves, smart watches are becoming popular as well, from retailers like Pebble, Galaxy Gear and Sony. All of these improvements in mobile device technology mean new opportunities for getting a piece of the market share when people are on the go.

3
Jan

Common Blogging Mistakes

When blogging aka web blogging first started out, it was a great way for ordinary people to talk about their feelings and emotions. These days, however, blogging is also a great way for businesses to engage their readers, make more sales, and get their product in front of their audience. If you are one of the many businesses that have a blog, there are some factors you need to consider when blogging.

Spelling and Grammar: It doesn’t matter if you are a content company selling content or if you are a refrigerator repair company, make sure that you spell everything correctly on your website and that you are being grammatically correct. It makes you look unprofessional and makes it look like you don’t care about the blog, website, or your readers.

Post Consistently: Some blogs and even some social communication websites like Facebook, give you a great way to engage and communicate with your audience. However, if you are blogging inconsistently (or too much) you can send the wrong signal to your readers. Too little and you don’t care. Too much and you might seem desperate. Remember that posting blogs is not just about readers either, it’s about search engines!

Self-Promotion: Yes, it is your blog and you can talk about your products and or services. But, you should also make sure that you are sharing other subjects as well. Educate people and share your knowledge.

Don’t Copy: Copying other peoples work might seem like the easy way out. But, it’s definitely not beneficial to you or the blog. Make sure that you only post fresh and unique content pieces on your blog.

Email List: Adding an email list to your blog is one of the best ways to keep in touch with your readers. Not only is it a good way to notify people you have a new blog up, but it’s also a cool way to keep people at arm’s length when it comes to a sale you might be having, discounts that are only available to your email list or a new product you might be offering.

Comments: In this day and age there is always an issue when it comes to allowing comments or not allowing comments on your blog. If you do allow comments and you have set up a way to keep people from making spammy comments – make sure you reply to your readers’ comments, questions or even gratitude comments. If you helped someone out and they post on your blog and thank you for your help, reply to them! If you are not allowing comments, perhaps this is something you should re-think. Comments make a blog look “visited” or busy. It makes other readers see that they are not the only ones visiting the blog and that they too should feel comfortable in writing a comment or a question.

Use SEO: It does not matter if you are making a large or a small post. You should be using SEO on your main blog and on every blogging post that you make. SEO and keywords (or tags) are a great way to get people and search engines to visit your website. If you want to show up on the search engines, using tags or keywords is a great way to do so. Make sure that you are sticking to your specific niche. If you are a coffee shop; don’t include keywords about car tires. Also, if you have a brick and mortar store, you can include localized keywords to show up on the search engines as well i.e.; Coffee Shop Sacramento, CA.

2
Nov

10 Holiday eCommerce Marketing DONT’s for the 2013 Holiday Season

Revenue and blood pressure spike during the holidays, if you own or run an online store. The National Retail Federation reports that retail does up to 40% of total yearly revenue during the 61 short days between November and Christmas. Big consumer shopping dates include Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and of course the ultimate shopping rush of the few weeks before Christmas. With customers increasingly shifting to online purchases over brick and mortar, the stakes have never been higher with eCommerce stores in every category fighting to capture the budgets and attention spans of online shoppers. With time being at a premium, please enjoy the below short “DONT & DO” list for holiday eCommerce marketing.

10 Holiday eCommerce “DONTS”:

  1. DONT Be a Grinch about Special Offers and Discounts. Consumers love to dealhunt and comparison shop, and are likely to abandon their cart if they sense a better deal elsewhere. DO Consider creating a couple holiday offers like Free Shipping or 10% off a $100+ order, then listing on coupon sites like Retailmenot.
  2. DONT Be vague about Return, Shipping or Guarantee policies. An often overlooked detail, store policy can be a huge factor in purchase decisions, especially high ticket items. DO Combat Buyer’s remorse by putting clearly worded policy high profile on your checkout page.
  3. DONT run those tired banner ads you’ve run all year. Most of us suffer from “ad fatigue”, and tend to develop a blindness to images or messages we see regularly. DO have your graphic designer pump out a couple eye-catching designs with a seasonal image centerpiece like Turkeys, Pumpkins, Santa or Christmas stockings.
  4. DONT run your normal AdWords campaigns. Customers searching for your products have holidays on the brain, and will subconsciously be attracted to ads that include seasonal language. DO have your AdWords guy or Ad Agency crank out a couple holiday themed campaigns with seasonal discounts!
  5. DONT leave out holiday graphics or messages on landing pages or your store. Since a visitor may return multiple times to your site before converting, a holiday message could be the last straw before adding an item to their cart. DO update your website with a message that reminds the reason for the season!
  6. DONT let your competition steal your sale. If you’re lucky, just 1/6 of visitors who “Add to Cart” will complete the purchase if they leave the site before checkout, DO run ReMarketing ads that reach this group of people keeping your brand is top-of-mind while converting shoppers that are on the fence.
  7. DONT let your customers stumble through a broken site. It only takes one 404 page or a few seconds of frustration for a new visitor to abandon your website. DO have your web developer scan your site for broken links, identify poor user experiences with Google Analytics, and update your inventory.
  8. DONT lose customers to a slow website. The modern customer is incredibly impatient, so don’t give them the opportunity to open competitor websites or Google search while yours is loading. DO keep site speed fast by checking your site on http://tools.pingdom.com/, if it’s over 4 seconds, you’re losing money!
  9. DONT alienate mobile customers with a hard to navigate website. If customers don’t buy from you on mobile, they certainly are researching the purchase from the   iPad or smartphone. DO check your site on http://www.mobilephoneemulator.com/ and provide ensure a good mobile experience!
  10. DONT try to do it all alone! It’s a lot of work just to keep an online store running- not to mention the advertising, marketing, graphic design and web development needs! DO get a little help by delegating holiday promotions to your staff; or consider outsourcing to an expert!

 

If the thought of getting your eCommerce holiday marketing ready this year is overwhelming, consider hiring an Ad Agency like SearcherMag.net to manage some of the complexity. As your outsourced Creative Department, we can provide an array of expertise such as Display / Remarketing Ads, High Touch Adwords Management, Gorgeous Web Design and Custom Mobile Optimization just to list a few of our services. Don’t have time to work out the details, but want to sleep better at night knowing your website is top-notch? Inquire about a free comprehensive website audit including load time, mobile experience, purchase funnels, SEO performance user experience and more. Simply call or contact us today.