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What Is Growth Marketing, and Is It Right for Your Business?

Marketing is a huge, complex field. The only way to stay on top of the latest trends and best practices is to keep reading. That’s why we’ve compiled this ultimate guide to growth marketing, so you have a solid base of knowledge to build on.

What Is Growth Marketing?

It’s marketing focused on business growth. The goal is to grow your user base and revenue by acquiring new customers and retaining existing users. Think about it like this: Budgets for growth marketing are determined by your business goals. If you want to drive more revenue, create more traffic or get more downloads, you’ll spend more money on growth marketing channels.

 

Once you have a target number in mind, it’s time to figure out how much the different marketing channels will cost. You also need to decide what marketing tactics to use. For example, will you focus on paid advertising, SEO, email marketing, and social media?

 

Some businesses only have a budget for one or two of these channels. Others have an unlimited budget to spend across the board. Regardless of your budget, there are certain tactics that work better on certain channels. Listen to your customers to see what they value and prioritize accordingly.

Where Is Growth Marketing Headed?

The tools, tactics, and strategies you use today will likely be different in a year or two. New platforms emerge all the time, letting you reach new audiences for less money. Others disappear, causing your strategies to fall apart overnight. Here are the top trends we see shaping growth marketing in 2022:

1) Growth Hacking Will Become More Important

Growth hacking is a combination of product development, marketing, and business strategy. It focuses on improving key metrics in your company to drive growth, like engagement and conversion.

 

Growth hacking began with startups that didn’t have a lot of money to spend on marketing. However, it works well for larger businesses as well. Since it’s based on experimentation, you can test different concepts and see which ones work best.

 

The process is more efficient than traditional marketing because it doesn’t require lengthy roadmaps or tons of upfront planning. There are no long-term commitments, and you’re free to change your strategy as often as you like.

2) Social Media Will Change How We Connect With Customers

In five years, we’ll be sharing our lives with virtual reality (VR) as well as other various forms of social media. By then, most businesses will be using social VR to connect with customers and potential leads. A majority of VR users report they prefer interacting with brands in VR over other channels.

 

Social VR is largely a matter of user interface design and technology. As the tools improve and we experience more realistic interactions, social VR will become more widely used. Even if you don’t have VR equipment, you can still use interactivity as a tool to engage customers in your business.

3) Conversations Will Be Recorded in Every Corner of the World

The next logical step after social media is to feel like we’re always talking to each other. That’s why tech companies like Facebook and Google have been investing heavily in video.

 

Video conferencing is a growing trend. As people increasingly use smart devices to connect with friends and family, we’ll be able to do it from anywhere on the planet. It will be easier than ever to see loved ones, even if they’re thousands of miles away from you, because the technology can send pictures, videos, and audio communications across each channel. The more you know about your customers, the more likely they are to trust you.

4) Email Marketing Will Become More Personal

Email marketing is already among the most effective forms of marketing. However, it hasn’t evolved very much in the last couple of years. There’s a lot of room for growth when it comes to personalizing and targeting messages based on keywords and interests.

 

Email icons overlaid on an image of a person texting

What Are the Benefits of Growth Marketing?

Growth marketing can be a bit cheesy at times. However, if you can do it right through the right digital marketing firm, it can be a powerful tool that helps you drive sales. Here are the most important benefits of growth marketing:

1) Significant ROI

Growth marketing is expensive. When compared to other growth channels, it’s definitely more expensive. This doesn’t mean growth marketing is useless – in fact, if done correctly, it has a higher ROI than tactics like paid ads and copywriting. If you can achieve a 2% conversion rate, your ROI will increase by 200%.

2) It’s fun!

Of course, not every growth marketing project is going to be successful. But even when they fail in some way, they’re still worth doing. The process of growth marketing is exciting, and your customers will enjoy the results. Just remember that you’ll still need to focus on customer service for your existing users and make sure you have the proper infrastructure in place before you begin.

3) It’s Natural for Your Audience to Trust You

It’s easier for your audience to trust you when you’re building a brand that has real value to them. Some people like funny videos, while others prefer customer testimonials and helpful tips. Your growth marketing efforts shouldn’t be so over-the-top that they overshadow your other marketing efforts.

 

Are You Ready to Make Growth Marketing Work for Your Business?

If you want to continue growing your business, you’re going to have to avoid some common growth marketing mistakes. If you want to avoid those mistakes and create more engaging content, start by:

1) Making It Easy for Your Customers to Buy

The biggest mistake businesses make with growth marketing is confusing their customers. They try to rush them into selling without giving the customer the tools they need to make a purchase. The result? Few sales and an overall bad experience for both sides.

2) Trying Too Hard

Marketing videos aren’t organic anymore; they require creators and sponsors. It’s not enough to create entertaining content now; it has to be funny, insightful, and educational all at the same time.

3) Trust-Building Content

Think about your audience when you create your growth hacking strategies. What are the topics they would find most interesting? Where can you find those people? What do they have in common? How can you use their keywords to your advantage?

 

Growth marketing should be an organic process that fits naturally into your current business model. There’s no easy way to implement growth marketing strategies. However, when you plan them correctly and dedicate the time and energy to executing them, you’ll get results. Finding a good digital marketing firm such as our team here at Salt Rank will help you avoid common mistakes, too. You need to be proactive about growth marketing. Make sure your system is set up for success at every stage of the funnel.

Top 13 Marketing Objectives Your Business Should Strive For

A good marketing objective for your business should generate interest in your products or services as well as in your company. You don’t want to set up easy goals that are essentially a formality, such as increasing customer loyalty. Sure, this will help you improve your business and get more patronage over the long run, but depending on how the real goal is achieved, it isn’t really worth the effort. Below are the top 13 marketing objectives that will be more successful in the long run.

1.) Build Brand Awareness

How many people would be able to recognize your company or brand before you become famous? It’s a good idea to work on this objective before you even start marketing because it will help you in the long run. You don’t want to build something that nobody will know about, and that is what selling without any brand equity is.

The use of a digital marketing firm can help you increase your brand’s presence online, and it can be a very cost-efficient way to market your business if done right.

 

2.) Generate Interest in Products or Services

You want people to talk about your company, and not just once but repeatedly. You want people to remember you and wonder what you’ve been up to lately, strong enough for them to start looking for updates about your company even if they don’t buy from you yet.

 

3.) Rank Higher in Search Results

Getting ranked higher in search results but maintaining good quality content will surely help you get more clients and generate more business. Google is known for its strict rules when it comes to search engine optimization, and your website all of a sudden disappearing from the rankings means that there are things that need to be fixed. A digital marketing firm can also be of help in this area and ensure you stay in shape, not just in terms of search engine optimization.

 

4.) Get Higher Conversion Rates

Businesses don’t succeed without enough clients, and a good way of ensuring people buy from you is to make sure that your website layout is conducive to conversions. For example, you need to have an area where customers can easily thank you for the order as well as a convenient way for them to send feedback about their experience and suggestions for improvement. This way, you can work on building more trust between your business and your customers.

 

5.) Improve Time on Site

The time that a potential customer spends browsing your website is essential in this industry, and if you’re ranking high in results, but your page takes a long time to load, causing other sites to load faster, you might lose business as well as rankings. This is where having an online marketing firm that understands how to create fast-loading websites can help you speed up the process of getting clients and increasing conversions.

 

6.) Improve Customer Lifetime Value (CLV)

This is where lifetime value comes in, and it essentially is how much your clients are worth to your business. The higher the CLV, the more business you could get from that customer or those customers. A good way of improving this number is to ensure that you provide them with products or services that are worth every penny so you don’t have unhappy customers.

7.) Improve Product Quality

This is one of the main reasons why many businesses nowadays use a digital marketing firm because they take care of marketing with the main purpose of improving product quality. This doesn’t mean that you need to completely redesign your entire company, just focus on ways in which you can improve quality and sales.

 

Three employees work to create a marketing plan

8.) Increase Profit Margin

A digital marketing firm can help you achieve a higher profit margin and achieve the highest profit possible. You will also be working with a team of people and consultants that have experience in digital marketing, which means they’ll be able to do this for you at a lower cost compared to what you would have spent on hiring someone on your own.

 

9.) Break Into New Markets

Breaking into new markets can help you increase your profits and provide you with more clients. You also want to make sure that you don’t grow too fast for your own good, so be careful about this area.

 

10.) Improve Customer Experience

A good marketing objective should have the sole purpose of improving the overall experience of your customers. Find out what they like, what they need, and how you can make their experience better in a way that will lead to repeat business. It’s a good idea to implement this as early as possible to make sure that you can get ahead of your competitors.

 

11.) Increase Brand Presence

It’s a good idea to work on brand presence before you think about marketing because this will help you make more of an impact in the long run. People don’t buy from companies that they have probably never heard of. You’ve got to be popular if people are going to trust you enough to buy from you. Brand presence is something that takes time but can be a very effective way to generate more clients and also increase brand loyalty.

 

12.) Increase Sales

It’s a good idea to increase the sales of your business, and this is what marketing your brand usually does. There are several ways in which you can do this, and one of them is to increase your profit margin. This will mean more clients (as well as repeat customers) who start buying things from you because they feel that it’s worth it.

 

13.) Increase Prospect Pipeline

A good way to ensure that you’re getting more clients is to actually get more prospects. This may sound easier said than done, but a digital marketing firm can assist you in finding the people who need and want your product or services. You will also be able to find out the things they would need or want in order to buy from you, which means that you will have a better chance of closing them.

 

Conclusion

All of these points will go a long way in helping you improve and grow your business. However, not all of them can be done by digital marketing firms all at once. You might have to start small, like implementing some of the digital marketing strategies and increasing your profit margin in order to make it worth investing in any of these things. This is also a good way of getting clients since you’re not just providing them with products or services that they need but also with something that they want.

 

If you need some help reaching these objectives, contact our team here at Salt Rank today! We’ll happily help you get on the right track.

10 Essential Web Design Tips From a Digital Marketing Firm

Ask yourself the following questions. Can your visitors understand what your company does within 5 seconds of arriving on your website? Can they also easily navigate your blog? Is your pricing page layout intuitive and easy to figure out? And finally, does your website have a low bounce rate?

 

If you answered no to these questions, then you may want to rethink how you’ve designed and optimized your website. Here are 10 essential web design tips from a digital marketing firm that can help you do a better redesign of your website. 

1.) Your Buyer’s Journey

After acknowledging that your website needs a redesign, you’ll need a plan to tackle it. Begin by laying out your customer’s journey from beginning to end. The beginning is when they land on your website for the first time, and the end is when they become a customer.

 

Also, consider what will happen in the middle of their journey. What pages will they view? What content will they read? And what offers will convert them into customers? Knowing these things will allow you to design a website that nurtures leads through your sales funnel.

 

It’s recommended to use a CRM to make researching this information easier. However, if you’re finding it difficult to obtain this data, you can always just ask (interview) your customers. Just ask them if they can give you 15-30 minutes of their time to answer a few of your questions (you can even provide incentives if you’d like).

2.) Touchpoints

You can then use this information to formulate your strategy. This strategy will include the key touchpoints of your site. Touchpoints are the areas of your site that users interact with most.

 

And with each of these touchpoints, you should be able to determine what opportunities, emotions, pain points, thoughts, and goals each touchpoint needs to evoke.

 

When you know what needs to happen with your touchpoints, you can enable it with your web design. Perhaps you need certain imagery or color palettes. A digital marketing firm can help with creating the right design elements for these key parts of your website.

3.) Remove Distracting Elements

Certain parts of your site can detract from your value proposition. For example, complex animations, poor-quality website images, and lengthy or poorly formatted content are all common examples.

 

Since most people have a maximum attention span of 8 seconds, you’ll need to make it very clear what information they will learn on your page. There should also not be any distracting web design elements that detract from this. 

4.) Website Loading Speed

As part of a good website design, your website should serve data to visitors quickly. After all, no one will hang around if all the images on your site take ages to load.

 

So what’s a good way to limit the loading time to something acceptable? Picking the right web host for your site can make a huge difference. It can also be a good idea to use a website builder that prioritizes loading speed.

 

Finally, try to reduce the number of bigger items in your site design. The more high-resolution images or videos on display, the longer it can take for people to download all that data.

5.) Make Mobile a Priority

This is perhaps the most important web design tip out there. A web page that’s both responsive and mobile-ready is required in today’s world. Currently, more than 50% of website traffic comes from mobile devices. So, you’ll want to make sure that each aspect of your website will work properly in different resolutions. You should also pick a platform that will optimize your images for mobile devices.

 

There’s more to mobile optimization than this, and there are plenty of ways to include mobile optimization on your website. A digital marketing firm will be familiar with these methods.

 

A web designer laying out a mobile app 

6.) Create a Visual Hierarchy

Where you place different things on your website is very important. After all, humans are visual creatures, and providing information in a way that’s easy to consume is vital in grabbing their attention and helping them to retain that information later on.

7.) Make the Fold Count

The fold is the first part of a website that’s viewable before being required to scroll. This part of your website design deserves extra attention due to its great importance.

 

Ensure that your most important elements, like your call to actions (CTAs) and headline, are located in this section. The fold is the first area on your site that you’ll be able to generate clicks, so you’ll want to take full advantage of it.

 

However, thorough web design must still include more CTAs in other parts of your web page. After all, not every visitor will be sold by the first call to action they see. The goal is to convince them to make a decision, and this decision is frequently made outside the fold. 

8.) The Taller, the Better

If your content is information-dense, you’ll need plenty of space to fit it into your website design. A tall scrolling page can be perfect for this. Studies have shown that conversion rates go up as much as 30% when there is more data to scroll through. 

9.) Simplify

Even if you have a lot of content to offer your visitors, you must be careful not to give them too much. A key part of website design is knowing what should be displayed to users. Remember, less is more, and present them with one detail at a time. For example, don’t sell a book series. Sell a book. Give each book individual attention, and allow the visitors to explore everything on their own. They’ll become more engaged when they have to find out certain things on their own. More engagement means they’ll be more likely to make a decision.

10.) White Space Is Good

People don’t like clutter. This translates into web design too. Keep your paragraphs padded out with plenty of white space. It will give your content more breathing room and also make it easier to read. It’s a simple and easy web design tip for driving more traffic to your website. 

 

Salt Rank is a digital marketing firm in Kansas City. For more help with website design, contact us today

Web App vs. Website: Which One is Better for Your Business?

Websites and web apps both streamline your business and give you a competitive advantage. But what are the separate benefits and drawbacks that each one has?

 

Before we answer that, it’s important to ask the question, “why does your business need a website or web application?”

 

Then, think about the fundamental difference between a web app and a website. A web app pushes the limits on design aesthetics, usability, and value. A web app opens up a whole new world of possibilities for a business.

 

Choosing the right option for your business is a crucial business decision. In fact, in recent years, we’ve seen many business owners discuss what is the best way to build their online presence, by building a website, web app, or both.

 

Websites and web apps are not the same thing. The subtle differences between the two are important, and knowing what those differences are can help you choose the right option.

 

The decision should be mostly based on the unique needs of your business and other factors, such as:

 

      • Mandatory features
      • The purpose of the website
      • Your target audience(s)
      • Your total budget

 

If you aren’t sure what your website will be for, then you’ll develop unrealistic expectations for yourself or your web development services company.

 

Have no fear because we’ve got all the important information laid out here. We’ll be showing you the major aspects of web applications and regular websites and their key differences.

 

As I’m sure you can relate, web applications and websites are an irreplaceable part of our lives. Google, Facebook, YouTube, and Wikipedia are used by billions of people, and all of these people know the differences between these websites.

 

What is a Website?

Let’s start with the basics. What is a website? Since the birth of the internet, its goal has been to disseminate information to the masses.

 

With this simple goal in mind, we started with classic HTML, which was just static pages with content and media accessed via a URL address. These websites lived on servers that were connected to the web network. Even back then, these sites were cable of sending information around the world 24/7.

 

These days though, modern sites utilize more than HTML. They are far more intuitive and utilize languages like JavaScript and CSS in their design. This is why the modern website is more feature-rich. But in the end, the goal is still the same – to provide information to people and function as a tool for marketers.

 

Now, what about web applications? These are another type of web tool that tend to be more action-oriented. They work just like any other software. They can utilize augmented rich internet application technology (RIA), which is what Silverlight, Flash, and JavaFX are.

 

Web applications are usually hosted over the internet and utilized in web browsers. They also offer a great range of features and functions than a website. Some high-quality web applications are Slack, Gmail, Trello, and Google Drive.

 

A woman browses a website on her laptop

The Main Differences Between a Website and Web App

Here are the main differences between the two:

Integrations

Web apps are better than websites at integrating with other online tools and software. These third-party integrations let the website app collect, process, and store data. These integrations also elevate UX (user experience) by helping create a more personalized experience with the content.

 

When it comes to integration, the difference between the two can be summed up this way: with websites, integrations are optional. For web apps, it’s the main function. Your web development services company will understand this and design it accordingly.

 

Authenticating

Authentication is a necessity if you’re handling sensitive information – after all, you must prevent unauthorized access, thus protecting you and your customers. Authentication means having a login procedure frequently in the form of a password and username. Only authenticated users can access the data on the website.

 

Of course, not every website needs authentication. Most information websites don’t require it.

 

On the other hand, for web applications, it’s much more common. While Wikipedia doesn’t ask for authentication to access its information, most pages on Facebook ask you for your password and login ID to view them.

 

Interaction

Consider the level of interaction involved with a single page on a website. For example, an About Us page is designed for users to read it and be informed that way. Its job is to provide information and usually doesn’t require any further interaction from users.

 

On the other hand, a web app requires interaction and input from users. This interaction can occur in numerous ways, including form submissions, responses to those forms, Live Chat, or electronic payments.

 

Other Web Apps

There are also even more actions that a web app can perform, including online shopping, hotel booking, and even ordering food.

 

With the increase in actions and functions, the line between a web app and a website is becoming more and more blurred. This is largely thanks to the emergence of cutting-edge “hybrid” frameworks, such as Progressive Web Apps (PWAs) and Single-Page Apps (SPA).

 

Should You Choose a Web App or a Website?

A website is useful if you’re trying to inform users about your product or offer. A website works if you’ve just got a landing page with a simple form for subscribing.

 

A web app will provide more opportunities for interaction. If you’re looking for deeper user involvement, then a web app can be the best option.

 

For example, when looking at work apps (most of the Google ones), they are update-able and dynamic, meaning that everyone who has access to a Google project can update and access the essential files.

 

Examples of interactions in real estate apps are:

 

      • Viewing accommodations
      • Archiving them
      • Setting up meetings with agents
      • Making appointments for viewings

 

Conclusion: Web App or Website?

It depends on what you’re trying to accomplish. Go for a web app if you want to:

 

      • Solve specific problems that businesses are having
      • Do more than just brand your business online
      • Create a robust communication channel
      • Maximize your customer service and thereby increase revenue and sales

 

A web development services company like Salt Rank can assist you in whichever direction you decide to go into. If you need personalized advice for your business, feel free to get in touch with us! 

 

What Is Evergreen Content And How To Create It

Are you looking to immortalize your content? Then creating evergreen content should be part of your content marketing plan. Written and visual content pieces should be made fresh, sustainable, timeless, and relevant to pull in leads organically. Hiring the best SEO services can sprinkle the right magic dust for your content.
 
Regularly putting out content might not be enough, so a mix of time-sensitive and evergreen content can provide generous link juice and leads to your business. Evergreen content alone can give you value that compounds and remains consistent over time.

 

What Is Evergreen Content?

Anyone can benefit from creating evergreen content. If you are a blogger, influencer, coach, small business, or entrepreneur, creating high-quality evergreen content with the best SEO services keeps you on top of mind.
 
Evergreen content has a value that remains over time. It’s not time-bound or seasonal. In fact, with the right marketing strategy in place, having evergreen content will help you gain leverage or traction in your business. You are bound to draw in more leads into your business for months or years to come.
 
Evergreen content topics aren’t time-dependent. More so, the content of this type is expected to be so superior in quality that it becomes a resource or benchmark for related types of content. 
 
The content isn’t specific to a niche or industry. The topic contains evergreen information or steps or could have improvements over time with new technologies and trends, but the basics remain the same.
 

Benefits of Creating Evergreen Content

Increase in Traffic and Leads

Evergreen content provides you seamless and consistent traffic that could even increase over time. With an evergreen content strategy, you create layering to generate new and ongoing traffic and leads. While time-sensitive content would have peaks or a sudden gush of views or traffic, it could wane or die down over time. With that being said, evergreen content is a priority, especially if you are looking to grow your visibility, engagement, and sales on a long-term basis.

 

Longer Shelf Life

One of the apparent benefits of evergreen content is that it has a longer shelf life than time-sensitive content topics. This is because the topics are regarding fundamentals that do not or change very little over time. With immortalized subjects, there is no need to create content out of these topics constantly. All you have to do now is repurpose content to different social media channels. Most of your target audience would be beginners to medium users who would always go back to your content or website because you have helped them learn the basics.

 

SEO-Friendly

Perhaps the best benefit of using evergreen content is the fact that it is suitable for SEO. The goal of every business is to rank on top of the first page of Google. With evergreen content, other websites would link back to you, and your content would generate more traffic, making you a trusted site. Google loves to reward trusted sites, and thus, you get to be on top of SERPs.
 
Woman sitting at table typing on laptop
 

How to Create Evergreen Content

1. Choose Evergreen Topics

To create evergreen content, you need to focus on evergreen topics. When researching topics, you need to focus on what your target market or audience would need from your business. What information are your buyers looking for? What are the pressing problems or needs of your consumers?
 
When you try to look into the pain point of your target market, you will see a long list of problems that you can solve. These evergreen topics comprise the basics such as “How to Ease Joint Pain in Seniors” or “How to Bake a Strawberry Cake.”  
 
Of course, topics should be aligned with your niche or your business. It’s also important to inject unique ideas and also recent statistics into your blogs. When looking for topics, you can get ideas from the most popular articles or trends and create blogs about the basics.

 

2. Create the Best Version Available Online

When creating blogs focused on evergreen content, you need to identify the topics that other websites have not explored or discussed. If you can’t find one, you can create a much better version than what is on top of Google rankings.
 
To have better positioning of your brand, you have to create the best version available online. With that in mind, you need to be in a position of power or create blogs with relevant and complete information that your target audience would find golden or valuable.
 
Create content that is top-notch in quality that other websites can link to. To do this, you need to be excellent in research; having references and citations will position your brand to be the best and an expert resource or solution. You can also include personal opinions, which would be great with your branding.

 

3. Align Your Content With Your Brand

Your brand voice should be seen and felt with your content. Evergreen content helps you attract more leads or customers to your business, plus it also helps you reach more fans that will improve brand recall for your business. This is precisely why you need to get top-of-the-line SEO services for your business.
 
Great content will always attract your target market, especially if it’s designed to be aligned with your brand. Write with the audience in mind. This is how you create a memorable brand.

 

4. Update Your Content When New Information is Available

Suppose your evergreen content has included statistics or data that have become old or irrelevant. In that case, you should constantly update content to become fresh and valuable for current and future readers.

 

Create Immortalized Content

The best, cheapest, and most effective way to do marketing is to focus on content marketing. Content marketing has always fueled visibility, awareness, and engagement for many brands. 
 
Big and small brands benefit from content marketing, especially now that businesses have shifted to the digital space. This is what SEO services can do for your business.
 
With evergreen content, you get to grow brand awareness, increase your reach organically over time, and boost ROI. Evergreen content allows you to immortalize your brand with content that never goes obsolete or gets old. If you want to immortalize your content, you can now do that by implementing the evergreen content strategy in your business.

What are Connected TV Commercials and How Can They Help Your Business

With the constant development in technology, there ought to be a continuous evolution in the world of digital advertising as well. Marketers, as well as every SEO company in Kansas City should be on the lookout for the best traditional and digital marketing techniques to reach their very diverse audience.
 
With the “new normal” still in effect, a new way of advertising has risen in the form of connected TV commercials. This technique is now the current hype in the business and digital marketing world due to its convenience and advertising capabilities.
 
Granted, the tech behind connected TV has been with us for many years now, but it is not until later that many businesses discovered its power of advertising.
 
Get into the bandwagon and discover why your company needs CTVs (Connected TV Commercials) as a marketing tool. Here is everything you need to know about connected TV commercials and how they can help your business grow and thrive.

 

What is Connected TV?

Connected TV or CTV simply refers to a television that has the ability to connect to the internet to support video content streaming. This includes your flat-screen smart TVs, Apple TVs, Xbox, and Playstation. 
 
Now when CTV is in play, then the acronym OTT is just around the corner. OTT or Over-The-Top refers to the delivery of any content from the internet to the connected TV. 
 
There’s no need for users to subscribe to a traditional cable system or satellite provider when there’s OTT. Instead, users can easily stream and watch content via the internet, which is usually more affordable and often free.
 
Some examples of OTT content that you probably already encountered and even use includes movies and tv shows you stream from Netflix, Disney+, Amazon Prime, and Hulu. 
 
Another excellent example of OTT but in the form of a message application is WhatsApp. It utilizes the internet for users to send messages with one another instead of a mobile texting plan.

 

How Does It Work as an Advertising Tool?

So how does CTV and OTT technology have anything to do with advertising? Well, it kind of works the same way as with traditional TV commercials, where after a few minutes of watching a specific drama show, a bunch of commercials and advertisements will stream on your tv.
 
The same thing happens with connected TV advertising, but the stark difference is users watch this content via the internet. So connected TV advertising works the same way as watching Youtube content and having a sponsored advertisement pop up mid-watch, then getting back on your video after a few seconds. 

 

How Does it Differ from the Traditional TV Commercial?

Besides the delivery method, CTV commercials are much, much more effective than traditional TV commercials for many reasons. Here are just some of them.

 

1. Everybody Uses CTV Now

As of 2019, marketing studies revealed that 60% of households in the US own a CTV and enjoy content delivered by OTT services, like Netflix. The percentage of CTV owners is expected to reach 75 to 80% this year, which leaves only a few people viewing ads through paid TV cable, antenna, and satellite providers.
 
Additionally, Millennials are reported to be the biggest fans of CTV and OTT content, especially those made by Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon. So if your primary target audience is Millennials, then it’s time for you to invest in an SEO company in Kansas City and try out CTV ads now!

 

2. CTV Ads are Targeted

Connected TV advertisements can target a specific audience, thus allowing your ads to be viewed by the right users and increasing your ROI.
 
For example, if your target is sports-related users, then you can pay for major sports networks, like ESPN, to run your ad during a live sporting event that they’re televising. This ensures that your ad will definitely reach its target audience, plus you will know how many viewers actually viewed the ad and let it run its course or skipped it. 
 
Additionally, CTV can target viewers the same way as websites and social media platforms do. You can target specific audiences by using the data of the OTT apps they use and the content they view.
 
Woman sitting in the dark eating popcorn wearing headphones with laptop in lap watching videos smiling
 

3. Users Don’t Mind CTV Advertisements

One of the best advantages of CTV ads compared to linear TV is that viewers don’t mind the video advertisements in their CTVs because they’re more invested in the content they’re watching. 
 
Studies revealed that a considerable percentage of people don’t mind sitting through a video ad to continue watching their show, no matter where the ads start rolling (pre-roll or mid-roll advertising).
 
Furthermore, studies found that many people feel that “these ads are a fair price in exchange for the free and low-cost content in CTVs.” 

 

4. Interactive and Various Ad Formats

Lastly, CTV advertisements have more interactive video ad formats than traditional tv commercials. For example, users have the option to skip it, not view, or click a link that would direct them to the business’s landing page if they liked what they saw in the ad. Some format examples of CTV ads include:

    • In-stream video advertisements refer to unskippable video ads that last for 15 to 30 seconds. It can play before or during a show or content.
    • Home screen placement ads pertain to a short video or image ad just sitting on your home screen and containing a call-to-action.
    • Interactive pre-roll ads are just like in-stream video ads, but this one rolls at the start of the content and has a clickable feature to redirect you to a specific landing page.

 

5. CTV Ads Have Real-Time Metrics

Lastly, CTVs commercials feature real-time performance tracking. Unlike its traditional counterpart, CTV ad metrics can actually tell you how much traction and engagement your ad gathered, not just how many times it was loaded. 
 
Moreover, it allows marketers to view user insights valuable to their future ad campaigns, such as user geography, demographic, and devices connection.

 

Conclusion

The bottom line is that connected TV commercials can play a massive role in the success of your brand awareness campaigns, user conversions, and growth of your business. 
 
Salt Rank is a trusted SEO company in Kansas City. If you’re ready to start discussing CTV commercials as a potential marketing strategy for your business, get in touch with us today! 

 

How to Effectively Optimize Your Video Content for SEO

Video SEO isn’t quite the same as website SEO. For example, you might be struggling to create videos. Making quality videos isn’t easy – they are difficult to produce, edit, plan out, and cost time and money to create. But when it’s all said and done, your video isn’t ranking up. What’s happening?

First of all, there is definitely a difference between normal SEO and video SEO. Video SEO changes quickly, so having an ongoing SEO services package covering video SEO would be a smart idea for any small business.

Let’s first define Video SEO and then talk about the changes that have occurred recently.

 

Video SEO Defined

Video SEO works similarly to regular SEO, but they aren’t exactly the same. With video SEO, you must optimize your video to get indexed and rank on search results pages for relevant keyword searches. Luckily there are plenty of strategies for optimization to give your videos the best chance of ranking higher.

 

Recent Video SEO Changes

Recently in the past few years, video marketing has exploded in popularity with small businesses. After DSLR cameras became more available in the late 2000s and YouTube became mainstream, it was much easier to get high-quality videos online.

Now everywhere you go online, you see videos. We all carry smartphones in our pockets that let us capture high-quality video anytime, anywhere. However, with the boom in popularity for online videos, ranking higher in search results has become more difficult.

Here are some optimization strategies that might be helpful for you.

 

1. Selecting a Video Hosting Platform

When selecting the best video hosting platform, think about your motivation behind ranking your videos. Is it to bring in new traffic and leads? Or does it have more to do with creating brand awareness and controlling a narrative?

If you care more about promoting brand awareness, then Vimeo and YouTube are excellent platforms to consider. The key thing to know about platforms like YouTube is that most of the traffic going to their videos stays on their site and not yours. That could potentially lead to your target audience jumping to your competitors. For example, after they click a suggested video that plays when yours finishes.

 

2. Create Transcripts for Your Videos

When you scroll through the Facebook feed, you will probably spot many videos that have captions. These captions allow you to view the video without disturbing anyone else (it can also be viewed by the hearing impaired). That text playing alongside the video is called a video transcript.

These transcripts will allow your video content to be accessed by more people, including search bots because these bots look for pages that have additional text.

 

3. Create an Engaging Thumbnail

Your video thumbnail is what a person sees after they search and find your video. So, it will play a major role in getting people to click on your video. Consider it like you would a book cover or a website’s homepage. It should be attractive, compelling, and relevant to the video’s content and title.

Pro tip: Videos with human thumbnails usually get more plays than those without.

Woman sitting at laptop with headphones on watching video
 

4. Put Thought Into Your Video Title and Description

Like with blog posts, titles and meta descriptions play a key part in getting your videos to rank higher. Therefore, you’ll want to take the time to craft a good title for your video along with a decent video description. Just like with meta descriptions, you also need to include keywords in your video description. You can get these keywords using the same methods: through keyword research, you’ll find the terms that people actually search for.

 

5. Make the Rest of the Page Relevant

It’s not only about video optimization when it comes to getting placed in SERPs. It’s also about page optimization as well. That’s because if the page isn’t optimized for SEO, a search engine won’t even try to crawl it, to begin with.

While it can be difficult to rank your site organically, creating good content and following SEO fundamentals will help. And finally, ensure that your video is relevant to the website/page that it’s embedded on.

 

6. Make the Page Focus on the Video

Too often, a video is located beneath the fold, which makes people have to scroll down a lot before landing on the video. This obviously results in a low number of plays since people don’t want to spend that much time looking for a video. The search crawlers are also unlikely to try and index a video that’s hidden.

Therefore, the best way to make your video easier to crawl is to put it front and center on the page.

 

7. Don’t Embed a Video All Over the Place

Embedding a video on multiple different pages will force you to compete with yourself. Remember never to do this because it’s pointless and can hurt your efforts.

The short explanation is that if you’re trying to rank a page and video that are both relevant to each other, there’s no point in embedding the video elsewhere on your site. You’d basically be competing with yourself, which doesn’t make any sense.

 

SEO Isn’t the Only Way to Promote Videos

While SEO is definitely important, it’s not the end all be all way to promote your videos. It also isn’t 100% reliable. Google will always be making changes to its algorithms. As a result, video marketing constantly changes as well. And, of course, hoping that search bots will rank your videos higher isn’t a great strategy either.

 

Consider Paid Advertising

In short, SEO is difficult to control and always changing. That’s why paid advertising can complement SEO in getting more eyes and clicks on your videos.

Plenty of places online offer video advertising opportunities – Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter, just to name a few. There are also non-paid strategies that you can consider, such as having influencers promote your video content. If you ever decide to consolidate your video content into a YouTube channel, be sure to make an excellent YouTube channel trailer.

 

 

 

7 Reasons Why Your Small Business Needs to be on Social Media

Social media isn’t going anywhere. Currently, there are more than 3 billion social media users spread all over the internet. Some of the major platforms include LinkedIn, Facebook, Snapchat, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram. Also, that 3 billion number is growing each year rapidly by 13%. The pandemic has only accelerated the trend.
 
A social media marketing strategy will give your brand another way to reach out to customers and build a better connection with them. If you haven’t yet connected with your target audience on social media, the chances are that your competition already has. There are over 50 million small businesses that are also present on social media.
 
Do you still have any doubts about social media marketing? If so, this blog post is for you – we will go over the seven reasons why it’s the best marketing strategy for small businesses.
 
If you’re also trying to find a digital marketing agency that can handle your social media marketing, contact Salt Rank today!

 

1. Social Media Marketing is the Best Customer Service

Social media is very effective for responding to customers’ complaints quickly and efficiently. 67% of customers currently use Twitter and Facebook to try and solve problems with their purchases, according to Social Media Today. Being present on social media is a cheap and effective way to respond to these kinds of complaints. It will also give you the power to do it in real-time, thus lowering the probability of negative sentiment spreading about your brand online. If you “save” these customers, they might even be more loyal to you in the future compared to customers that never submitted complaints.

 

2. One of the Best Ways to Build Brand Awareness

Currently, something that a customer usually does first is research online before purchasing something. So if your business doesn’t have a presence on social media, you will limit your opportunities to build brand awareness when your target audience is at the crucial decision-making stage. That’s why when your business is present on social media, you will signal that your brand is reliable and worth doing business with. 

 

3. Online Communities Raise Your Value

When you have your own online communities surrounding your brand, Google will know that you are a business that offers something valuable to people, which will raise your value in search engines. Besides the ranking potential this offers, just having profiles on several major social media websites (LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook) will give you higher ranking potential. This includes potentially ranking better for your brand name and keywords. A great way to drive more customers towards your brand is by incorporating social media marketing into your SEO strategy. A solid SEO strategy reinforced with social media marketing can generate around $2.75 for each dollar spent.

 

4. Social Media Marketing is Cost-Effective

There’s no need for complex or expensive advertising strategies to create awareness around your brand. The fact is that the cost can be as low as $1 per 1000 impressions on websites like Twitter or Facebook. This means that your company can reach many people without spending that much money. While it sounds simple, just putting any old ad up won’t give you the results you’re hoping for. You must develop a clever strategy (ideally with the help of a digital marketing agency) to maximize the effectiveness of your ad.
 
People sitting down on subway on smartphones with emojis around them

5. Social Media is Multipurpose

Each interaction that you have with potential or current customers is an opportunity (or touchpoint) to fulfill their needs with your services or products. For instance, let’s say that you shared a link for your brand new product on your Facebook branding page. In that case, each new click is basically a chance for somebody to check out what you offer and become a potential buyer. The more that you post to social media, the more potential sales you can get. 
 
The effort required to do this is minimal compared to the amazing results that you can get. Besides, engagement from your followers is a bonus that comes in addition to what normally comes from sharing a piece of content. More engagement means more conversions for your brand. Social media is a means of communication with potentially interested buyers, and it’s also an easy way to help them out and encourage them to buy from you.

 

6. Social Media Takes Word of Mouth to the Next Level

Nothing beats word of mouth for improving your brand’s image. And, thanks to social media, you can harness this technique to its full potential. Each positive review made about your business means that your business gets exposed to different networks of people, drastically increasing your brand’s potential reach. So, social media can widen your target market far and wide beyond where you currently live, which opens the door for likes, shares, and followers from all around the globe.

 

7. Retain Your Customers Easier

A major benefit of social media marketing is that it will allow you to keep your customers delighted and entertained. After a customer buys your product or service, your social media can help to keep them continually engaged. Each post you do on social media will remind customers that your business still exists. These posts will also refresh their mind about the positive experiences that they had with your business. This makes it more likely that they will buy from you in the future, thus helping to build their loyalty to your brand.

 

How to Start Growing A Following on Social Media

Now that you know why it’s beneficial to have a social media marketing strategy, you might wonder where to begin. Unfortunately, gaining a big following on social media isn’t instant. Still, there are ways that you can start seeing some fantastic results right away!
 
After you’ve begun to launch your social media strategy (ideally with the help of a digital marketing agency), you can help kickstart things by doing a social media giveaway. It could be a gift card for an online store or a coupon for free services. This is a simple way to get more followers on social media.

 

 

 

10 Tips To Boost Your Rank on Google Maps

A Google maps listing is essential for marketing your small business. It will help your business get seen by more people, differentiate itself from competitors, and bring new customers in through your door. And the best part is that it costs you nothing! However, you can only properly reap the benefits of Google maps if your listing is set up properly. Just because your business is listed doesn’t mean Google will automatically rank it.
 
Proximity is just one of several factors that Google Maps considers when creating rankings for listings. There are 10 things that you need to know to get your Google Maps listing to rank higher.

 

1. Claim Your Listing on Google Maps

After you’ve created your listing, which you can do by following a few simple steps, you must also claim it. What does this mean? In the process of creating the listing, you only provided a few details – location, name, category. But after you claim it, you’ll be able to provide much more information describing your business. The more info that your listing has, the more likely it’ll rank high. Besides, nothing else listed below will work if you don’t claim your listing first.
 
In order to claim your listing, you must already have a Google My Business account (it’s free!). With an account set up, you can just bring up your listing and then choose the appropriate option. Then, just follow the steps provided by Google. 
 
As this is helping with your Google ranking, this is SEO. You can always hire an SEO services provider to help you in getting things set up and running efficiently. 

 

2. Provide the Necessary Info in Your Listing

Once you’ve got a Google Maps listing along with a linked Google My Business (GMB) account, you are prepared to start optimizing for better ranking results. The first thing you should do to optimize is to include more information in your listing.
 
In your GMB account, check the “info” tab. You’ll see different things, including description, services, website, special hours/hours, attributes, products, phone number, service area (if it applies), category, and address. There are many ways to optimize these account sections to make your listing rank higher.

 

3. Get Some Reviews!

Keeping in mind that Google likes what consumers like, you shouldn’t be surprised that Google boosts the ranking of business listings that have great reviews. So what’s the best way to get more reviews?
 
When you add a new listing, it will become open to new reviews automatically.
 
However, that doesn’t guarantee that you’ll get reviews. You must be proactive and ask your customers to leave reviews. For even better ranking potential, you should also respond to these reviews. 

 

4. Provide a Local Number

Google doesn’t like toll-free numbers (877 and 800) since they’re often used for spamming. Get yourself a local phone number that has the same area code as your business’s location. That way, your listing will rank higher, and it will show users that your store is indeed located where you said it is.  

 

5. List Your Store Hours

A Google Maps listing can inform visitors if your store is closed, open, will close soon, or will open soon. This information also becomes more relevant during this pandemic, as businesses can put “temporarily closed,” which is also important for SEO purposes. It’s important because Google will know you are still active and thus trustworthy, which will help to boost your rank. Keeping this information updated can also reduce the amount of people trying to visit your store during the wrong times (which could provoke negative reviews that can hurt your Google Maps ranking). This is another reason why outsourcing your SEO services to an SEO expert team could help you as they will stay on top of these issues to help your business grow.
 
Person holding smartphone looking up directions on Google Maps

6. Use Your Address and Name Consistently

If Google Maps doesn’t trust your business, then it won’t get ranked. What does this mean? It means that you’ll have to prove your trustworthiness. One way that you can do that is to make the info describing your store across the internet consistent. For instance, you want to make sure that the name of your business in the GMB dashboard matches the actual name of your business, with no variation. This name should also be the same on your other accounts on the web – including Facebook, Yelp, and other social media accounts. The same must be true for your address information (e.g., use either “st” or “street” for every address listing).

 

7. Add a Description for Your Listing

A business description should give a big picture overview to help visitors get acquainted with you. It should also include unique attributes that can work to compel visitors. The tone should also align with your branding to foster a stronger connection. Ensure that you add keywords as well since this will also help with ranking higher for searches containing your store name, services, and products.

 

8. Categorize Your Store Properly

When it comes to ranking, your listed business category is actually really important. First, you must choose the primary category. This should be the category that represents the main product or service offered by your business. You should then select any other categories that apply as secondary categories.
 
Remember that you can’t use custom categories. However, if you start to type your main product or service in the box, you will notice other category options appear showing the different categories that you can choose from.

 

9. Include Photos in Your Listing

Google likes it when people include photos in their listings. Firstly because it shows that your listing is active and worthy of getting ranked higher in search. Secondly, because Google has become better at recognizing photos and then including them in local search results. And finally, the general rule is that Google likes what the people like. People like photos. And if your listing includes no photo at all, people will instead see a boring map image next to your business listing. Not good!

 

10. Use High-Quality Photos

Therefore, to boost your rank on Google Maps, you’ll want to use the highest quality and most compelling pictures at your disposal. They should really capture what the typical shopping experience is in your store. If possible, you should try to add one new picture every day.
 
If keeping up with your Google Maps and Google My Business account seems like too much, consider hiring an SEO services provider like Salt Rank. Our SEO team can help to build your GMB profile and keep it regularly updated. Contact us today to learn more.

 

 

Top Engagement Strategies to Grow Your Business Online

There are many engagement strategies and online marketing services to help you grow your business online. Two of the best strategies for engaging with potential customers involve blogging and social media. In this blog post, we’ll take a deep dive into these two methods and how you can utilize them effectively.

 

Blogging

Blogging is not only a great way to create engagement with your target audience, but it’s also great for your website’s SEO.
 
As most of us know, SEO stands for search engine optimization, and it’s all about getting the best results from organic search terms relating to your website.
 
But if you’re new to internet marketing, then you may not be aware of the different ways of how blogging helps your website’s SEO.
 
It’s important to know the basics, so let’s go over them now.

 

1. Blogging Helps Keep Your Website Current

Maintaining a website that’s current and up to date is essential for SEO. Why is that the case?
 
Well, think about it from Google’s point of view.
 
Google is the most used and popular search engine in the world, and there’s a good reason for that; Google has some of the highest standards for how websites are ranked in the search engines.
 
This means that they will only rank your website on page one if they feel that it would provide a good experience to visitors.
 
A website without content is a website that can’t be trusted. There could be various reasons why a website isn’t updated with new content. It could have gone out of business, or the information could’ve been proven false and then retracted.
 
But whatever the case may be, Google isn’t going to rank a website highly without a blog, nor will it rank a website highly with a blog that isn’t updated regularly.

 

2. Blogging Keeps Eyeballs On Your Website Longer

How does the time visitors spend on your website affect your SEO? Well again, let’s look at this question from Google’s perspective.
 
The longer someone stays on your page, the more this signals to Google that your website is helpful.
 
But suppose someone leaves the page quickly (aka a bounce). In that case, this sends the opposite signal – that your website is either of low quality or that it doesn’t properly address the searcher’s concern.

 

3. Blogging Is Your Key To Unlocking The Potential Of Long Tail Keywords

Did you know that half of all searches are long-tail keywords?
 
If you don’t already know, long-tail keywords are simply keywords that are longer – about four words or more.
 
Compared to more competitive and shorter keywords (for example, “microwave oven”), long-tail keywords (such as “how does a microwave oven work”) have the advantage for most businesses.
 
Since most businesses don’t have the SEO authority that big brand name websites do, they should try and rank for long-tail keywords. Long-tail keywords are often best suited for targeting more serious buyers anyway.
 
So how does blogging help your website’s SEO when it comes to long-tail keywords? Well, blogging is the best way to use long-tail keywords on your website.
 
For instance, it’s difficult to incorporate long-tail keywords on a product page. But a blog, on the other hand, can give you the ability to target any long-tail keyword that you choose.
 
In short: with long-tail keywords, who you want to target to bring to your website is all up to you! And that will be a much better engagement strategy for you to grow your business.
 
Man outside looking at smartphone

Social Media

Social Media is the king of online engagement and ultimate online marketing services. In the past 15 years or so, we have seen a rise in social media platforms. We can do so many things with social media, including promotions of businesses. What can social media do to benefit your small business?

 

1. Builds Your Brand

Your brand is key when it comes to your business. Who are you? What is your business? What do you do? What can you offer your customers?
 
It’s good to communicate all of these in your social media channels, so potential customers know who you are and what your business actually does.

 

2. Builds Relationships

Since social media is interactive, this is a great way to build relationships with your customers. This is a great platform for customers to easily communicate if they have issues they need to talk to you about or suggestions for your business. (Maybe even some compliments!) You can easily reply to your audience’s comments or Tweets within seconds, which brings people back for more. 

 

3. Creates Loyal Customers

Staying engaged with customers on your social media channels can really make a difference in your business. Suppose someone is angry with your service and posts an angry comment on your social media posts. In that case, you can reply to it immediately and resolve the issue.
 
It’s better to confront the issues and solve them rather than ignore your customers’ problems. According to research done by Harvard Business Review, customers who receive quick responses to their comments or Tweets are more willing to spend more money with the said company later on, especially if the company responds in five minutes or less.

 

4. Boosts Sales

No matter what you’re selling, social media can help you sell it. It’s easier to promote your business. You can have your friends share your posts to their personal social media, and it’s a great way to show off your products or services. Being able to communicate across platforms, share posts quickly and share to a large audience really benefits small businesses when it comes to sales. 

 

5. Cost-Effective Marketing

It’s free and easy to sign up for social media accounts like Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram. These sites have features where you can purchase sponsored content to help promote your business even more. Although, you can easily promote your social media accounts and business for free with some extra work, such as word of mouth or contests to share your business. 
 
Advertising is usually relatively cheap on each of these social media platforms, so you can purchase the advertising and marketing you need within your budget.
 
So what can social media marketing do for increasing engagement? It can increase brand awareness, create new customers and promote your small business to audiences worldwide!

 

Let’s talk about your business

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