Online Marketing Blog

Our DeCarlo Studios online marketing blog – learn about SEO, Website Design, Graphic Design, and Inbound Marketing here!

Comparing Cheers Reruns With Facebook Marketing: You Wanna Be Where Everybody Knows Your Name

Comparing Cheers Reruns With Facebook Marketing: You Wanna Be Where Everybody Knows Your Name

Lately we have been watching reruns of the hit television sitcom from the 80s, "Cheers". We have noticed that Facebook marketing is a lot like walking into Cheers. It's a place where your friends gather, you share stories of the day, and "everybody knows your name". Facebook is a marketing tool where your personality can really shine through and your customers can connect with you on a more personal level. Add a touch of humor and some inspiring imagery, and soon customers will be flocking to your website, eager to find out more about your business.

What Should You Post on Your Business Facebook Page?

Make sure you have a variety of posts. Here are a few ideas:

  •  Share what inspires you about your business.
  •  Feature your employees doing a great job at work.
  •  Add quotes related to your business.
  •  Share charitable causes in which you participate.
  •  Announce special offers and promotions.
  •  Highlight some of your latest projects.
  •  Share fun photos from around the office.
  •  Answer your customers' top questions.


Right now, we're watching the early episodes of Cheers. As the seasons progress, we will see new faces and experience new dynamics in the characters' interactions. In the same way, Facebook is evolving and styles are changing. Remember to post consistently and have fun!

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Hit a Home Run: Cover All Your Bases with Great Website Marketing

Hit a Home Run: Cover All Your Bases with Great Website Marketing

Hit a Home Run

Everyone knows that winning a baseball game requires the teamwork of all the players. The same is true for website marketing. When all of your marketing efforts are working together, your website will bring you business - and that's a win! Just as a team needs to practice to play well together, you should always be working on ways to improve your website. And just as you have a better chance of scoring when the bases are loaded, you will also have more opportunities for leads and new business with the more marketing strategies you employ.

Who Are Your Website All-Star Team Players?

  • First Base: Great, informative content that answers the questions of your target buyer's persona.
  • Second Base: A history of your business, and your mission and vision statements.
  • Third Base: Social Media
  • Shortstop: SEO
  • Right Field: Blogs
  • Center Field: Galleries/samples of your work
  • Left Field: Testimonials of satisfied customers
  • Catcher: Contact Forms, Free Estimate Forms, Order Forms
  • Pitcher: Offers and Promotions

How to Hit a Home Run with Your Marketing

Great website marketing works well together. SEO will help your business get found online. When someone visits your site, the content aimed at your target buyer's persona will educate and build trust. They will read about the history of your business, your vision and goals. They will stick around to browse samples of your work, or read a blog to help them solve a problem. They will see testimonials of others you have helped and gain more confidence in your business. They will jump over to your Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus, LinkedIn or YouTube page to learn more about you. Your personality will come through in your social media and they will feel connected to your business even more. They may see an offer or promotion and be prompted to contact you directly. Congratulations - you now have a customer ready to do business!

Put Me In Coach, I'm Ready to Play!

Ready to turn your website into a marketing machine? Make a checklist of what you would like to accomplish and set some deadlines. It takes time to pull all of your marketing strategies together, but every base you cover brings you closer to home plate. Feel free to contact us at DeCarlo Studios for advice or help with your website marketing and print marketing.

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5 Signs That Your Website is Not Working For Your Business

5 Signs That Your Website is Not Working For Your Business

Websites are the New Yellow Pages

If you are reading this, chances are pretty good that your web site may need some updating or redesigning. Remember when you used to turn to the Yellow Pages to find a business when you needed one? When was the last time you used a phone book?  Years ago, you were in good shape if you simply had a website. Now web sites are the main source of marketing and there's a lot of competition out there.

5 Signs That Your Website is Not Working For Your Business

If you are wondering if your web site is not working for your business, here are 5 clues that you need to make some updates:

  1. You have poor Google Analytics reports. If you have low search engine rankings, a high bounce rate, low time spent on your site, and low average page views, then there is huge room for improvement on your website.
  2. You have recently changed the branding of your company. If you have a new company logo and/or color scheme, you definitely need to update your website to your new look. Consistent branding across all of your marketing materials encourages brand loyalty and sets you apart from your competitors. Your customers will see your professionalism and have a higher trust and value in your business.
  3. It's hard for you to make simple updates on your website. You do not need to be an expert web developer or run and call your web person every time you need to make a small change. It can even be as simple as changing a price or a phone number. DeCarlo Studios uses the Joomla CMS (content management system) and we make sure our customers are in control of their own websites and can make minor changes and updates if they choose to do so.
  4. Your website looks old and outdated. Your website should be continually updated with new and relevant information for your customers. It should have new photos and information about your products and services. It should be clean, well organized and visually pleasing. Not only does a current website look great, a continually updated website also increases Search Engine Optimization (SEO).
  5. Your website visitors aren't converting. Maybe people are visiting your website, but your phone isn't ringing with new business. It isn't enough these days to simply have a website with basic information about your business and a way to contact you. It has to be a marketing funnel, full of detailed information that your customers are seeking. You need to be helping them solve their problems, earning their trust, and proving that you are the best in your field. It needs to be active, engaging and have a variety of social media, blogs and e-newsletters.

Yes, I Do Need a Website Update … Now What?

So you have determined that you do need some updates made to your website, or maybe you need a website redesign. You want to have full control of your site and the ability to handle minor updates on your own. Or maybe you know that you need to improve your site, but aren't sure just where to start. DeCarlo Studios is here to help!  Call us for a free, no obligation consultation and we can help you turn your website into a marketing machine!

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Successful Internet Marketing Tips

Successful Internet Marketing Tips

Inbound internet marketing is much different and opposite to traditional outbound marketing. Today it’s about getting the consumer’s attention online. I’ll start with a description of traditional outbound marketing.

Traditional Disruptive Marketing

Outbound “disruptive marketing” used to be easier. Spend a lot of money on advertising, TV ads, promos, direct mail, newspaper and print ads, cold calls, radio spots, special offers and tradeshows, and watch the leads pour in.
Today it seems like everyone is bombarded with a million marketing messages per day and consumers know how to block out disruptive marketing tactics. The whole outbound marketing thing isn’t doing the job as effectively anymore because of modern defense tactics.

  • 4% of junk mail is discarded without being opened.
  • 72% of Americans are on the national do not call list.
  • More TV viewers are switching to online entertainment.
  • Paid circulation has fallen by 50% since the mid 60's.
  • We use DVRs to record shows and skip commercials.
  • We use spam blockers to purge email.
  • We screen our phone calls.

It's About the Internet

Today the internet is transforming how people shop and buy. It’s the great equalizer and has taken the power away from traditional marketing and sales and put it in the hands of consumers. Consumers find reviews and statistics, they research products and do comparative shopping online – at any time and any place they choose.

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How to Get Leads Online

How to Get Leads Online

When it comes to generating new leads on line, most business websites miss out on great opportunities to gain leads and customers. Let's discuss the essential things business websites need to put in place to get leads and customers. We begin by placing ourselves in the visitor’s shoes.

How Do Visitors Find Your Site?

A visitor is on your site, but how did they get there? Did they meet you and get a business card? Did they Google your business name because they met you at a networking event? Did they see a piece of marketing material or a commercial advertisement? Did they find you through a review site like Angie's List, Yelp, Facebook, social media, or did you come up in a search? There are many ways for visitors to find your site, but most new visitors who don't know your business should find you through an online search. I say "should" because your site should be optimized for search engines and should be registered with search engines. You need to have a way to keep track of how visitors find you online, like Google Analytics.

In 2012 Google had 1 trillion 817 billion searches. That is more than 5 billion searches a day. That's why search engine optimization is so important. A successful business website should do everything it can to make sure it's optimized for search engines. But great SEO can only deliver a visitor to your site. Then you have to know the answer to the following question.

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How to Set Up a Lead Generation Campaign

How to Set Up a Lead Generation Campaign

Lets face it, all businesses need a website. A website is the perfect place to generate a continuous stream of leads for a business. Unfortunately, most businesses don’t see their website as a lead generation tool. Let’s explore ways to improve and automate your website lead generation.

Three Percent of Visitors are Ready to Contact

Three percent of website traffic is ready and interested in contacting businesses about helping them with questions or purchasing. So three out of 100 visitors are ready to talk to someone. Simple math says to double three contacts to six contacts, the site would need 200 visitors, etc. So, to increase the contacts we need to increase website traffic.

A few ways to increase site traffic are:

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Why You Need a Business Blog and the Fundamentals to Get Started

Why You Need a Business Blog and the Fundamentals to Get Started

Take the Fear and Procrastination Away – Start Your Business Blog Today!

Starting a business blog can seem daunting. Here's an article to help take the fear and procrastination away and to help you get started! Because a business blog is a valuable marketing channel. It establishes you as an expert in your field and brings traffic and leads to your website. Businesses that blog get 67% more leads per month than those that don't, and blogs affect a buyer's purchasing decisions. A business blog will help you earn your website visitor's trust by showcasing your expertise and helping them solve their problems. Let's walk through the fundamentals of a business blog and show a few ideas to help you get started.

Why Does Your Business Need a Blog?

What Factors are Important in a Blog Post?

Simply blogging will not automatically transform your site into a marketing machine. You need to meet certain criteria to benefit from your efforts:
  

  • Frequency: The more blogs that you post, the more indexed pages you create for search engines. And businesses that blog 16-20 times per month get twice the leads and traffic than those who post 4 times a month.
  • Keywords: What keywords do you want to rank well for on your website? Take those keywords and write blogs about them. Make sure that your blog titles are optimized as well.
  • Calls to Action: Blogs should lead to Calls to Actions, to capture your leads and help your customers take the next step in the buying process. They can be banners or ads in the sidebar, or hyperlinks to offers.
    How to Generate Blog Content
    This is actually one of the questions that we are often asked – you are not alone if you are intimidated by the thought of having to generate blog content on a regular basis.

  • Repackage:  Take some of your internal content or communications and repurpose it for your blog. It's a perfect starting point to showcase your company. Consult with your customer service department and find out what types of questions they are asked on a daily basis. Blogs can answer these questions.
  • Brainstorm:  Start a brainstorming session. Write down every idea that comes to mind (even if it is outlandish). Let others build off of the ideas and add to the list. The idea is to keep creativity flowing, and then go back to your list and narrow it down for more concrete ideas.
  • Guest Bloggers:  Invite other experts to do a guest blog on your website. Look through your existing network. Check out college students who are looking to get experience. Invite trusted professionals in related fields to share their knowledge. Guest bloggers gain exposure for their writing and it helps them rank well in search engines.

Keep Your Blog Posts Organized

Use a calendar to keep track of your blog posts. Schedule them out a month or so in advance so that you are always prepared and can create a good balance of blog stories. If there is breaking news that you want to write about in a time-sensitive manner, move your articles around to accommodate this or leave room for such additions weekly. It's always important to be flexible in your schedule.

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Turn Facebook Fans into Paying Customers

Turn Facebook Fans into Paying Customers

Businesses who want to leverage social marketing need a Facebook page in addition to a great business website. Let's learn how to turn Facebook fans into paying customers.

Plan Your Facebook Strategy

It pays to have a marketing plan for Facebook instead of posting and reposting random pieces of information. Facebook is about more than just having a large fan base – you need to see the benefits of having those fans become actual customers. A great place to start is with your current Facebook analytics. Look at your current traffic and visitors to create click through goals, prospect to lead goals, and lead to customer goals.

Make sure that your page is connecting with your target audience. A great way to help you determine your target is by creating a buyer's persona. Here’s a free buyer's persona template tool. Once you know your target audience, you need to create a unified Facebook campaign that works with the rest of your marketing.

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Is Your Website a Marketing Funnel?

Is Your Website a Marketing Funnel?

A marketing funnel is a must-have if you want to generate new business from your website. Here is a look at a successful marketing funnel model.

Top of the Funnel

The top of the funnel is the part that draws online traffic to your site. Here are great top of the funnel tools and offers that draw visitors to your website:

Blogs

This is a great way to get found on search engines and to become a thought leader in your industry. A blog is great for boosting your search rank. The blog should be helpful and interesting to people searching for solutions you provide. The blog should be optimized around the keywords you want to rank for, but remember that you are writing for people first, then search engines. Free Ebook Learning SEO from the Experts.

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6 Steps to a SMART Online Marketing Plan

6 Steps to a SMART Online Marketing Plan

Here’s a quick 6-step plan to get you started with your smart online marketing plan.

1. Define Your Objective

What is the goal or end result you expect your online marketing plan to achieve? Write the goal down but take your time and think about it. Define your objective on paper and make it simple and clear.

2. Define Your Target

Who are you marketing to? Be very specific about identifying who they are. Is it more than one type or kind of target? How does your product or service benefit them? Where do you find your targets “hanging out” so you can get your message out to them? The clearer you are about describing your target, their habits and hangouts, the better your message will be received by your target. Here's a great power point template to help you define your marketing target. It's called a Buyers Persona Template and it’s designed to help you clearly define your target audience. 

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Conducting Your Online Marketing Symphony

Conducting Your Online Marketing Symphony

Marketing, when done right, is like a well-conducted symphony orchestra. It's sweet music to the ears of prospective customers because it engages them and touches their emotions. 


The keys to a successful orchestra are: 1. musicians knowing how to play their instruments well; 2. playing together in the correct key; 3. reading the music; 4. playing well with the rest of the orchestra and – most importantly; 5. following the conductor. How does this relate to online marketing?

Marketing Instruments

Today, marketing employs many different instruments like blogs, Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, YouTube, SEO, pay-per-click, websites, e-mail marketing and more. These modern marketing instruments should work together in harmony to draw the consumer in. When conducted correctly, great marketing causes people to take action, rise to their feet, call for an encore and return wanting more!

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Let’s Start Lead Nurturing

Let’s Start Lead Nurturing

Now that you have a name and e-mail offered to you by a prospect, what’s next? Automated lead nurturing!

If you don’t have a lead to nurture, please read Part 1: How to Get Leads On Line

Here's an Example of How an Automated Lead Nurturing Workflow Proceeds:

  • The contact information a lead submitted in exchange for valuable content goes into an automated lead nurturing workflow.
  • The workflow automatically sends the lead a customized thank you e-mail letter with a link to the content they just downloaded in case they need it again.
  • The e-mail thank you letter should also contain your contact information, your photo and a next step offer, with a  “call to action” directed to a lead form containing deeper information about how to solve their problem. Example information may be case studies, performance reports or webinars.

This middle of the marketing funnel information should begin to suggest why you may be a great solution for their problem by demonstrating how you've successfully solved the problem for others. Remember, your content should be focused on helping them solve their problem. Now your lead has a choice to make, and the nurturing workflow continues in two directions from this point – we’ll call them "A" and "B". 

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What is Inbound Marketing, Content Marketing and Online Marketing?

What is Inbound Marketing, Content Marketing and Online Marketing?

As the web continues to become the main way we search for information, more and more businesses are focusing their efforts and dollars at online marketing and with good reason. Let's explore how smart businesses market the inbound way.

What’s Inbound Marketing?

Inbound Marketing is about earning the attention of prospects online, making yourself easy to be found online and drawing people to your website by producing useful content they value. The goal of Inbound Marketing is to position a business as a thought leader and expert in their industry while building trust to make them the obvious choice with whom to do business. This is in contrast to conventional outbound disruptive marketing such as buying attention, cold calling, direct mail, radio, TV ads, sales flyers and spam. Unlike outbound methods, Inbound Marketing’s goal is to earn their way into prospects minds instead of begging or buying their way in through advertising.

The Inbound Marketing model is illustrated in five separate stages:

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