Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Small Town Marketing Has Moved and Evolved Slightly

Metro Marketing Blog Screenshot





I'm still working on getting all the wordpress plugins installed, but I'll have some good stuff online tomorrow for sure. I only have 2 articles online now, but I have some rolling around in my head waiting to get there.  Check it out and bookmark it, this blog will be more permanent for me. I bought it as a Christmas present to myself today.  WHAT A NERD!  I know.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

All I Want for Christmas is an iMac

All I want for Christmas is a new mac

That's the phrase that all the cool kids tell their parents, right?  I remember being that kid.  It took me many years to finally make the right choice and go all mac.  I have never been happier with my computing experience than with my Apple products.  I am the definition of Apple fan boy.

I have never actually had a desktop mac before.  That is all going to change soon.  I'm going to take the plunge and buy one with my commissions for selling stuff on the web this year.  I am super close to reaching my $1,273.94 (tax and shipping) goal to get my new iMac desktop.

I might wait until after the holiday season to see what kind of trick Apple has up their sleeves though.  Once they sell everything leading up to Christmas, come Spring they'll be ready to BLOW OUR MINDS with a revolutionary new product.  

That's why I love Apple.  Think Different.

NOTE:  I realize this has nothing to do with marketing your business online, but it gives you a insight into where my mind is at any given time.  I have goals.  They may differ from your goals, but we all work for something.  I work for cool technology and having a good time when I'm not working. 

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Google Says Mobile Search Rose 130%

Wake up, mobile search is here to buy some stuff 

Google announced today that mobile search has increased by 130% over last year’s numbers. This is something to take notice of.

More and more people are using mobile devices to find simple answers to questions or even where to buy that pair of really cool jeans they saw in the mall last week. They want the best deal. They want the best customer service. They want it all, yesterday.

Google knows what the customers want. They just have to groom us (the merchants) into the “perfect google merchant”.

How do I get to the top of Google Mobile searches? 

Follow the rules and be nice. That’s it.

Google wants you to have at least 30 reviews (on their site) from customers and a rating of at least 4 stars. These new rules bring a new aspect to your ecommerce storefront.

You have to be nice and somehow get people to write great reviews about your store.

If you’ve been selling online at all, you know that Amazon is going to beat you all day everyday in everything you do. If you search for anything on Google to buy, there they are with 20,000+ reviews and 5 out of 5 gold stars.

The little guy has to know how to work Google so they don’t become a link on page 10 – where it doesn’t matter if you’re at the top, no one will find you.

Today’s informative take home lesson: 

Be nice to customers. Offer them incentive to leave honest reviews about your website in the Google Shopping center. Never stop wowing them for one second.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Engage New Customers with Love

A happy customer's workspace.

Engage the user to buy and love. 

To make a truly amazing relationship between you and your customer there has to be love. They love what you do. They love that when they searched for you – they found you! You just gave them satisfaction without even trying or spending a penny.

Now that you’ve got their attention – what do you want to do with the short period of time you have with the user? 

Most websites today get you to sign up for their RSS feed (for new content) or try to get you to purchase something. They might sell an ebook or possible even give you one for signing up for their monthly newsletter campaigns. The goal of any online marketing campaign is to engage and keep for future advertising opportunities. 

Using your “new customer window” appropriately for gain 

If you don’t know the story of Zappos.com – you should do a Google search and read or watch some videos with the founder. He has a book on Amazon too if you’re interested.

They essentially made customer service their number one concern at all times and forced people to love their brand. I’m sure they have some unhappy customers, but they also have a huge rate of returning customers.

They would upgrade the customer’s shipping choice automatically and wow them when it showed up at their door the next day for no extra charge. That creates a unique relationship that people want.

They automatically file your company under “awesome” in their mind for as long as you continue to put a smile on their face. It doesn’t have to be free upgraded shipping either. I personally like to sit down before packing orders and write on every packing slip thanking them for using our online store. I wish I owned my own ecommerce company so I could do more “customer love” type things, but for now I’m happy where I am.

When it comes to building your brand, in a local market or national stage, the number one skill to have is keeping happy returning customers.

Never forget – it’s cheaper (easier) to keep a customer than it is to find a new one.

If you would like to read more of my blog posts - enter your email at the top right of this page to get all my posts in your inbox.  It's free and will help your small business when it comes to search engine marketing.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Tips for the Search Engine Battlefield

The never ending search engine war

Everyday new things happen in the world and the internet is the first to know.  How this content gets distributed is based on it's influence on any given search engine.  

Why do people use search engines SO much?

People rely on what is handy and the social norm.  The term "google it" is a perfect example of how the web is changing the world around us.  People know they can get the information they seek (uncensored) quickly and without much effort.

Like anything that helps you as much as search engines do, it also makes you lazy.  

I'm lazy.  

I know how things work, but I'm a lazy man.  Once you master the fundamentals of search engines and really understand how they work and get their information you can learn to become a lazy person too.  The web creates an amazing new market with ideas being influenced and thought of on a daily basis. 

So, the big question, how do I get to the top of Google search rankings?

That is the million dollar question.  This holiday season it actually became a billion dollar question.  Black Friday online sales surpassed ONE BILLION DOLLARS up nearly 20% from 2009.  That's insane!  

I rode the wave of holiday traffic this year at the top of every search engine, including Youtube (it's the #2 site in the US).

How?  I started in May of 2010 setting the bait.  Lots and lots of link bait means more doors to your products.  Everyone knows in old school marketing the more flyers you give to a targeted audience the more sales you will have.  This is what search engine marketing is all about for small business owners.  People love small business that are presented well online and in person.

NEXT POST:  Get more fundamental concepts behind using link bait constantly to add to your overall scope of marketing online.  

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Sunday, December 12, 2010

Welcome to Small Town Marketing

What is Small Town Marketing all about?

The way businesses connect with customers is getting more intimate and personal in the online world on a monthly basis.  We have so many new ways to influence people using the web today.  This blog will help teach the "internet marketing newbie" how to properly implement and track their return on investment within the online marketing world.

Why call it "Small Town" Marketing?

Whether I like it or not, everything I do in life (and love) revolves around this small town I live in.  It's peaceful with no chance of anyone trying to stab you in the back.  I like the online world because I can put something out there for EVERYONE to see and judge.  What they do when they see my content is what I'm concerned with - and you should be too. 

I'm writing these articles for local business owners wanting to take the next step and conquer the web.  I want to assist Paducah and Metropolis businesses to using search engine marketing and optimization to their advantage constantly.  Everything you say and do online contributes to your overall big picture online.  

Bad reviews = more people online know you suck. 
Good reviews = more people trust you enough to make a purchase or continue reading.

How much does search engine marketing cost?

It's Free.  All it takes is undivided time and a little common sense.  Being business owners yourself you should already have the common sense part figured out.  The time aspect can be a burden to the "non-believers" of the impact of the web. 

If you are unsure about spending time (or hiring) someone to do search engine business marketing for you - please read the rest of this blog.  Bookmark it.  Learn to bookmark things in your browser to read at a later time.  

TODAY'S MARKETING TIP:  In another tab, visit Google.com and in the search box type the following:
site: http://www.yourwebsite.com

This simple test will reveal all the instances of your domain on other websites.  I will show you how to use this in more detail in the future. 

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