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Calgary Marketing News

Does Inbound Marketing Mean the End of Real-World Relationships?

Whether you’ve thought about it yourself or you’ve heard others say it, it’s common for people to see certain web-based innovations as bringing an end to personal, human relationships. This is most often said of social media, but for some, it may also be a concern with inbound marketing.

What’s the Issue?

When reflecting on older approaches to marketing, it’s easy for some business owners and professionals to look back with rose-tinted glasses. The more traditionally-minded among them may view digital marketing as indicative of a larger dependency on the virtual world. Review sites appear to mean the end of word-of-mouth recommendation, Google searches seem to threaten the value of firsthand experience, and social media spells the demise of real-life community-building. Since these are just a few ingredients of inbound marketing, does this mean that inbound marketing is an “anti-human” way to grow your business?

The Fact of the Matter

The short answer is absolutely not, and in fact quite the contrary. Inbound marketing practices have, in part, developed out of an increased demand for more dynamic, personal engagement between brands and their communities. It’s about fostering a two-way relationship that offers audiences a more substantial and genuinely rewarding experience, going beyond a given company’s products or services in and of themselves. Because these principles are at the heart of inbound marketing, this philosophy incentivizes businesses to get creative about how they interact with the people around them.

Your Strategy

When your business embraces inbound marketing, you will be more equipped than ever to establish an enriching presence in the lives of your potential and established clients. The more diverse this presence is, the more reasons your leads will have to come to you. Attend community events to spread the word about what you do, post photos on social media with happy clients at your headquarters, and create content that will get people talking both online and offline about your expertise. The ideal inbound strategy is one that combines the strength of web-based tools with the timeless importance of community-building and human relationships!

The work we do with our clients is all the proof you need that inbound marketing and real-world relationships can thrive together as part of one powerful marketing philosophy. Give the CAYK team a call at (403) 456-0072 today, we’d love to bring you closer than ever to your audience!

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Internet Marketing Online Marketing

Get Better Digital Marketing Results with Less Effort

A common complaint we hear from clients planning new marketing campaigns is how they don’t have enough time to accurately produce their vision. This is a problem because it often leads to shortcuts and scheduling conflicts. However, there is a new force within the marketing industry that provides a superior alternative to this method. That force is digital marketing agencies, and they deliver high quality, customized strategies for all of their clients. How do they accomplish such a grand task?

The first way is perhaps the most obvious. It’s what they do as a profession! So a client’s time isn’t spent clarifying what they want, directing staff to specific parts of the project, or struggling to meet deadlines. Instead, the time commitment is only a couple of meetings at the beginning of the marketing strategy, and after these are concluded the digital marketing agencies team of professionals gets to work crafting a strategy that works for your business. As the project moves along, regular updates and reports help to keep client informed of the status. This helps the client do what they do best, while providing enough information to allow them to feel confident that their money is being well-spent.

However, the benefits are not all so obvious. Digital marketing agencies also have the advantage of not being limited to a single individual trying to accomplish everything prior to the strategy launch. Digital marketing agencies offer a wide variety of skill sets from developing and programming to writing, designing and editing. This helps to craft a holistic strategy that has expert knowledge ingrained at every step.

“Expert knowledge is ingrained at every step.” This is the greatest benefit of utilizing a digital marketing agency. With years of experience in traditional marketing and a continuing expansion of knowledge into the best techniques for online content they are able to offer advice in many areas. Knowledge about the latest trends in Search Engine Optimization, Marketing Automation, Google Adwords, analytics, and more helps you keep your brand at the top of the search results.

Not only do clients receive the benefits of social media management, marketing automation, and a Google Partner Agency, but they also receive the benefits of the latest design trends, cutting edge website programming standards, and professionally written copy. All of these features ensure that every client gets a powerful campaign that doesn’t require them to watch over someone’s shoulder. The process is streamlined to make sure that clients can focus on what is important, and rest easy knowing that their website is working for them not against them. All of this, and in many cases, for less than hiring a minimum wage in-house employee.

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Internet Marketing

Is Your Business Getting Lost in the Swamp?

Competition is a core part of running a business. Not all industries have to contend with it to the same degree, but if you want growth, you need to stand out. This is a task that seems to be getting harder and harder these days, especially on the web. Here’s how to make it a bit easier.

The Problem

The internet is big. So big, in fact, that even if you’re only looking for leads and clients in Calgary, it will still be pretty challenging for you to stand out from your competition. For those who want their company noticed, the task of gaining Facebook followers and website traffic can seem insurmountable when you have to get your community to know who you are in the first place. You don’t want to spent time and money developing a great website and using your social media profiles only to be yelling into the dark. This is why depending on one set of marketing practices while neglecting others is never a good idea.

A Multitude of Solutions

The good news is that there are numerous ways for you to gain more exposure and visibility for your business. The not-as-good news is that, with so much variety out there, knowing where to begin can be a little daunting. That is, if you’re trying to do it all on your own. If you work with the right digital marketing agency, they will utilize their experience and resources to direct the attention of your community towards you. The key is to choose a team that prioritizes a personalized approach, sitting down with you to determine where your efforts are falling short and what tools and strategies are necessary to beef things up.

Focusing Your Efforts

One of the key ways this is accomplished is through a strong PPC strategy. AdWords is the most common service for this form of advertising, and it’s always best to work with a fully equipped, AdWords certified, Google Partner agency. When members of your community search for key terms related to your industry, having a strong advertising presence on the results page can work wonders, not to mention a display ad presence on other sites. Well-written copy, smart budgeting, and savvy campaign management will give you just the push you need to stand out. It’s well within reach—all you need is a helping hand!

What aspect of digital marketing is your company falling behind on? Your strategy should draw from a diverse palette of tools to form a competitive, holistic approach. There’s no better way to make it happen than to work with a holistic marketing team! Call CAYK at (403) 456-0072 today!

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Social Media

Why Your Social Networking Plan Needs You

When working with a marketing expert to put together a social networking plan for your business, it can be tempting to let them take the wheel and watch how things improve. After all, we’re here to give you the reach you couldn’t have gotten on your own. However, the best possible results can’t be had unless it’s a true team effort. We’ll explain why.

Divide and Conquer

When it comes to the technical day-to-day, we have you covered. Sharing information, posting updates, and answering your questions or addressing your concerns are all examples of our territory. But if were to stop there, your website and social media profiles would seem a bit impersonal. Your internet presence is made unique and recognizable by the character of your business and its team. This is where you come in.

The Importance of You

Visitors want to see that you are actively involved in your work and are eager to let everyone know. The more engaging a glimpse you provide into your company, the more you’ll stand out among your competition. Personal touches are where the business owner really shines, whether it’s a video of a staff birthday or get-together, a recap of a seminars or meetup, or photos of you with your satisfied clients. The overall strategy is that you engage personally with your audience, and we lend a helping hand along the way.

Things to Keep in Mind

One thing that some may fail to consider is how this process will differ between separate platforms. If you have a good grip on what social media tools your audience is using, you can specialize your involvement for each one or prioritize one over another. For instance, if you design online word games and know that the majority of your players are mobile-based, then a full gallery of photos from that community word game meetup might do better on Facebook than on your website. As always, your presence and involvement go a long way when you know exactly how to most directly reach your audience!

The team at CAYK recognizes the value of a great collaborative effort. That’s why we’re here to work with you so that your business can thrive in today’s digital marketing environment. For more info, give us a call at (403) 456-0072.

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Content Internet Marketing Online Marketing

How to Create Effective Online Content

Content is the lifeblood of digital marketing. If you have any hopes of keeping your organic traffic strong, it’s all about keeping the quality of your content in tip-top shape. So how does one actually maintain quality control in a dependable way? Let’s run through a few key strategies.

Create Something of Value

One of the first things a potential client will want to do when visiting your website is know that you care about your work. In order for this to happen, you need to create informative, well-composed content on a regular basis. This demonstrates that you are knowledgeable in your field and have put genuine care and effort into building a site full of engaging material just for them. Blogging is excellent for this, and once you throw great images or even quality video into the mix, you’ll have an irresistible variety of content that shows you mean business.

Optimize!

Having an engaging site is one thing, but actually drawing visitors to it is another entirely. This is one of the greatest strengths of a good blog. If done properly, your writing will have a measurable impact on your organic traffic once you get smart about SEO. Do some research into what keywords in your industry carry good weight for searchability, or even find ways to fit full search phrases into your blog to cover your bases. Careful not to overdo this, however. Your blog should be readable in a natural way without feeling like a robotic collage of search terms!

Your Call to Action

One thing that many fail to consider as an important element to their site’s content is a call to action. This is a section at the end of your blog post or even beneath your embedded video that encourages the reader into action after they’ve learned about the business. Without it, a blog can seem unenthusiastic about making contact with the visitor. It’s critical to let the reader know what you’re genuinely eager to get in touch with them and discuss their needs. Different sites will write a call to action in different ways, but we like to do them like this:

At CAYK, we put our marketing expertise into practice every day to provide quality, enriching content for our visitors. If you’d like to find out how you can make this work for your business, give us a call at (403) 456-0072 today!

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Uncategorized

Tips for Building a Comprehensive Marketing Plan

A successful marketing strategy is essential for businesses of all sizes, but knowing every way in which you should be getting your brand out there can be a bit complex at times. Marketing in the modern era requires a comprehensive approach that takes advantage of every available avenue.

At CAYK® Marketing, we strive to help businesses of all sizes capture the many tools in today’s marketing world and utilize them to their advantage. If you’re retooling your marketing plan this year, here are a few essential tips to help you design a comprehensive marketing plan:

Pick your Market Wisely

Choosing a niche market is one of the most important aspects of your marketing plan. Identifying a specific market to go after will allow you to focus your resources and energy on marketing your products and services to that niche as efficiently and effectively as possible.

Craft a Personal Message

Crafting a personal message means finding a balance between what your company wants to communicate, and what your research tells you your specific market is looking for. Identifying the unique needs of your market segment will help you design a message that communicates how your products or services will solve their problems.

Consider Redesigning your Website

If you’re not already up-to-date with the mobile-friendly changes coming soon to Google’s search rankings, now is the time to start thinking about responsive web design. In the Internet age, your company’s website is arguably the most important marketing and communication tool at your disposal.

Create Basic Marketing Materials

Despite the fact that the days of the traditional advertising brochure are behind us, your company should still think about creating a few basic marketing materials that help to put your products and services on display for potential customers.

Highlight your Expertise

Nowadays, there are many ways to make your niche market aware of your company’s expertise. Don’t neglect the opportunities to communicate your knowledge through a variety of mediums, including blogs, articles, social media, and other public relations opportunities.

Set Networking Strategy

Both online and in-person networking is still incredibly important for businesses of all sizes. Networking is crucial to your company developing a significant referral network, and it will also be beneficial in your search for new, lucrative marketing opportunities.

Think About Referral Strategies

If you’ve already been running your business for some time, you most likely have a group of allied professionals you rely on to facilitate your business’ success. These connections can help you generate targeted new leads for your business if you can develop and effective referral strategy from your centres of influence (COIs).

You should also consider designing an effective client referral strategy to maximize the amount of automatic referrals your business receives simply because past clients are satisfied with the products or services you provide.

At CAYK®, we realize that a comprehensive marketing plan requires many facets, and the tips mentioned today are just a few basic guidelines to help you design a marketing plan that works for your company. If you’re in need of more individualized advice, please don’t hesitate to contact us at <span class="**403-456-0072**-CAYK">***403-456-0072***</span> today!

Categories
Internet Marketing

The Good and Bad of PPC in 2015

Pay-per-click advertising, through Google’s AdWords program or elsewhere, often leaves newer marketers confused. On the one hand, it’s a virtually instant way to attract visitors to a website, but on the other, it’s not just as easy as writing a few ads and watching the sales come in.

So should you be adding or expanding PPC advertising to your Internet marketing mix? Let’s look at the good and the bad…

The Good in PPC Advertising

There is a lot to love about PPC advertising in 2015, including:

  • The fact that PPC ads and campaigns are incredibly fast and easy to set up. You could have new leads coming to your site within just a couple of hours.
  • There are now more pay-per-click opportunities than ever before, including image ads, social ads, and Google Remarketing.
  • PPC advertising lets you test ideas and target markets very quickly, and without spending much money.

The Bad News on PPC

It’s not all great news, though. There are a few downsides to PPC these days, such as:

  • Pay-per-click has gotten a lot more competitive. You’ll have to work harder to win visitors, and it’s easy to waste money if you aren’t careful.
  • More advanced advertising options mean more time spent envisioning and maintaining campaigns. Expect that it’s going to take a little bit of work.
  • Even though paid traffic still converts at a high rate, some searchers and users seldom click on ads. That means you should supplement PPC with other activities.

So, Is PPC Worth Your Time and Money?

What you probably really want to know is whether PPC is worth the time and money. It absolutely is, but it’s important to get things right if you want your campaign to be a profitable one. Talk to the Google-certified team at CAYK® today to see how we can help you put together a set of ads that gets the job done.

Categories
Internet Marketing

Revisiting Last Year’s Resolutions

For a lot of business owners, “get on top of Internet marketing” is right up there on the New Year’s resolution list next to “lose a few pounds” and “join a gym.” It’s something they truly want and intend to do, but never quite seem to get around to.

So are you one of the thousands who decided to get more active with blogging, search engine optimization, social media, or pay-per-click advertising in 2014? And did you actually get around to doing it?

If you haven’t – or just feel like now is the right time to start growing your business online – we have some good news for you: It’s not as difficult, expensive, or time-consuming as you might think. In fact, if you’re thinking about making a new web marketing resolution, here are a few things you should know:

Internet marketing isn’t that complicated. Although there are a lot of buzzwords and statistics thrown around with Internet marketing, the ideas are still simple. The goal is just to identify your potential customers, bring them to your website, and then get them to make a purchase or an inquiry.

It’s OK to start small. You don’t have to start with a massive Internet marketing campaign all at once. In fact, it’s often better to begin with what you know and work your way up from there.

Having the right creative team makes all the difference. You want good advice, strong web designs, and marketing messages that help you stand out in a crowd. To get those things, you need to have creative and experienced minds on your side.

The sooner you get started, the better off your business will be. The sooner you begin, the sooner you can start enjoying more sales (and stop falling behind your competitors who already have Internet marketing plans in place).

If you don’t have a comprehensive and effective Internet marketing plan in place, you’re placing your business at a huge disadvantage and putting your future income into doubt. Regardless of what kind of products or services you offer, you can bet people are going to be looking for it on the Internet and turning to Google to find out more about your company. What will they find?

If it’s time to revamp your marketing strategy with an eye toward getting bottom-line results, get in touch with the team at CAYK® today!

Categories
Internet Marketing

Could You Pass an Internet Marketing Road Test?

Have you ever found yourself driving down one of Calgary’s streets, getting into a near accident with another driver, and shaking your head at them in disbelief… only to wonder whether you actually had the right of way when you think back on the incident later?

While those kinds of situations are thankfully rare for most of us, the point remains that the farther we get in life from the time when we had to take our first driving test, the more we tend to forget the little tips and rules of the road we were given so long ago.

The same thing occasionally happens with Internet marketing. Because the day-to-day process of gathering traffic, converting leads, and analyzing costs can be so overwhelming, it’s easy to forget about the fundamentals sometimes. That’s especially true when you consider that search engines, social media sites, and even best practices around things like email are changing all the time.

My suspicion is that a lot of us – even those of us who deal with Internet marketing on a daily basis – would struggle to pass a “road test” on the basics. That doesn’t mean we aren’t good at our jobs, just that it’s hard to keep up with everything that’s going on with Internet marketing these days.

So, how can we do better? And more important, how can we be more profitable without devoting inordinate amounts of time to education and review? Here are a few handy tips to follow:

  • Once a quarter, spend a few hours reading about the Internet marketing subjects (like SEO or PPC advertising) that are most important to your company
  • Pay attention to what you hear web designers, other marketers, or even teenagers talking about since it could be the “next big thing”
  • Ask yourself from time to time whether your Internet marketing seems to be accomplishing its most important task: attracting qualified buyers and turning them into leads or customers

Being out of practice when it comes to Internet marketing is understandable, but it’s also important that you don’t waste time and money that your company could be using more effectively elsewhere. Why not talk to the staff at CAYK® today to see if we could help you grow your business over the web?