7 Tips for Effective Copywriting

7 Tips for Effective Copywriting

Professional copywriters are experts in sales and human psychology. They know what makes people tick and how to connect with an audience to get them to spend their hard-earned dollars on a product or service.   They’re also very expensive. A top-tier copywriter can charge upper five-figures to write a website. And many small businesses aren’t prepared to make that kind of investment. Instead, they (or their head of marketing) will write the copy themselves.   Fortunately, there are some quick tips that you can adopt to improve your sales copy today, whether it’s your home page, product descriptions, direct mail, or whatever else you use to communicate verbally with your customers. #1 Write Like You Talk As soon as we start writing “as our businesses,” we become stilted and formal, like we’re trying to impress our high school English teachers. We replace perfectly good words like “use” with “utilize” to try to sound more professional. But all we’re really doing is making it harder for the reader to understand.   A good rule of thumb is to write your copy to a 6th to 7th grade reading level. That doesn’t mean you’re dumbing it down. The Lord of the Rings is written at a 7th grade reading level, and J.R.R. Tolkien was no slouch.   To prevent falling into overly formal writing, write like you talk. Keep sentences short, and use contractions like “didn’t” instead of “did not.” Starting sentences with transition words like and, but, although, and instead can help the reader to follow your thoughts.   After you’ve finished your draft, read it out loud. It...
8 Social Media Myths to Leave Behind in 2021

8 Social Media Myths to Leave Behind in 2021

There’s no question that social media marketing is, and will continue to be, important for local businesses. That said, there are a lot of social media myths that are annoyingly persistent and believing them can hurt your business. So, let’s bust some myths! Here are 8 of the most widely believed myths that you need to stop believing if you want to grow your business with social media. #1: You Need a Presence on Every Social Media Site The notion that you need a presence on every social media site is one of the most harmful myths for business owners. It takes time, effort, and money to maintain an active presence on ANY social media site and nobody has time for all of them. What you need is an active and meaningful presence on the sites that offer you the best opportunity to connect with your target audience and engage your customers. Nothing else matters. Most local businesses should be on Facebook. B2B companies should have a presence on LinkedIn. If you’re selling an aspirational product or service, then it makes sense to be on Instagram or Pinterest. Does this mean you should never try something new? Of course not! Set up a profile and give it a try. But if the site you choose isn’t giving you the results you want, cut it loose. #2: Fans and Followers are Worthless if They Don’t Become Paying Customers  You should use social media to attract new customers. That’s obvious and it makes sense. But I hear a lot of business owners who think that followers who aren’t paying customers aren’t...
Google Local Service Ads Explained

Google Local Service Ads Explained

You want to connect with local customers who are in the market for the services you provide. You’ve probably spent some time optimizing your website. You may have paid for Google Ads. But if you’re not focusing on Google Local Service Ads, you’re missing out on the most highly qualified leads around. What is a Google Local Service Ad? Why should you care? Keep reading to learn more. What Are Google Local Service Ads? We talk to a lot of small business owners and a lot of them don’t know about Google Local Service Ads – so let’s start with the basics. Google Local Service Ads are ads that appear at the top of Google’s search engine results page when someone searches for a local service.   If you know anything at all about digital marketing, you know that having an ad for your business appear right at the top of the Google SERP is a huge advantage. Google Local Service Ads aren’t available to everybody. You need to earn a spot there based on your ratings and that’s because Google guarantees the services of the companies whose ads are displayed. Components of a Google Local Service Ad The first thing you should notice about Google Local Service Ads is that they highlight reviews by displaying your average rating and the number of reviews available for prospective customers to read. Considering that nearly 9 out of 10 consumers rely on online reviews to make purchasing decisions, it’s impossible to put a dollar value on having a high review rating displayed at the top of the SERP. When a prospective...
Improve Your Email Marketing with These Tips from the Pros

Improve Your Email Marketing with These Tips from the Pros

Even though it has now been around for decades, email marketing is still one of the least expensive, most effective forms of digital marketing. That’s good news because it means you can connect with your target audience without breaking the bank. You already know the basics of email marketing, but you may not know how to get the most for your email marketing investment. Here are tips from email marketing pros to help you.   Maintain Your List Email list hygiene is a must if you want to avoid wasting money. Some people aren’t going to open your emails. Others may abandon email addresses or provide fake addresses when they complete your opt-in form. Either way, cleaning up your list can help you save money. You can do it by using a two-step subscription process where leads must enter their email address and then confirm the subscription by clicking a link. Research shows that this process increases open rates. For existing subscribers, send an email asking them to opt in for further emails – and delete anybody who doesn’t respond. Send Emails Regularly You may have heard this tip before, but a lot of companies follow it imperfectly and it hurts them. When experts suggest sticking to a regular email schedule, they don’t mean “send an email two or three times a week and don’t worry too much about the timing.” What they mean is that you should create an email schedule where emails are sent on the same days, and at the same times, every week. If you decide you want your B2B emails to show up at...
12 Versatile Marketing Approaches To Consider When You Need To Do Something Different

12 Versatile Marketing Approaches To Consider When You Need To Do Something Different

The world has changed over the last several months, and businesses of all kinds are trying to figure out marketing strategies that will work going forward.   It may be time to try something totally new and different from your normal routine to create some energy and get sales moving.   Depending on your industry, there are lots of options for you to choose from that you may have not considered in the past, but are worth a look now.   Read on to learn about 12 versatile marketing approaches and which of them will work best for your business. #1 Cause Marketing What values or beliefs are the heart behind your business? When you know what your business cares most about, you can use cause marketing to get your customers to kill two birds with one stone by purchasing your product or service. For example, for every item purchased, your business will plant a tree. Not an environmentalist? That’s okay. For every service you sell, donate to a local shelter or soup kitchen. No matter what cause you choose to support, this type of marketing goes far beyond brand awareness and reveals the heart of who you are as a company. #2 Close Range Marketing (CRM) CRM allows you to send messages about your products or services to customers who are within close range to your business. When they’re passing by, why not take advantage of this quick and easy method to get them in the door? #3 Relationship Marketing Want to ditch all the cheesy sales tactics? Your customer base will likely thank you for it. Instead,...
Getting Started With LinkedIn Stories

Getting Started With LinkedIn Stories

First it was Snapchat. Then Instagram released their Stories feature, followed by Facebook.   Now, LinkedIn has hopped aboard, with their new LinkedIn Stories feature.   Available only on the LinkedIn app, stories let brands reach their professional connections with 20 second videos. These videos are only available for 24 hours (just like Instagram) before they disappear.   By releasing this feature, LinkedIn is angling to leverage FOMO (fear of missing out) and keep its users logging in more often — or risk missing some great content. It also gives brands an opportunity to share less curated, more “in-the-moment” content, which many consumers really connect to.   If you’re considering adding LinkedIn stories to your marketing strategy, here’s what you need to know. How to Post The first thing you’ll notice when you open the LinkedIn app is that their Stories look remarkably similar to Instagram stories. So if you know how to post on Instagram, you’ll be ready to go on LinkedIn.   Stories live at the top of the screen in individual circles. Your circle will be on the far left, and say “Your Story” underneath. Just tap that circle, and then you can either record a story or select one from your photos or videos.   In the top right corner, you’ll find icons for adding stickers or text. The app doesn’t have many customization features yet, like polls or music. But expect more functionality in the future.   When you have your story set up how you like it, hit Share Story in the bottom right. Your first connections will now be able to see...