Battling the Bots

Battling the Bots

Internet robots or bots are used to perform repetitive jobs or send automatic interactions online. Recent studies have shown that bots now account for more activity on Twitter than humans. The majority of all tweets that share links to popular websites and articles, about 66 percent, are actually shared by bots.

The most active bots on Twitter are responsible for 22 percent of all tweeted links which means that they produce four times as many tweets as the average human user. The findings suggest that bots have taken over Twitter with the amount of link sharing tweets that they are posting online. Even more alarming is that bots account for 89 percent of the links shared to news sites like Google news.

Bots can be used to manipulate the algorithms that news sites use to determine the links to articles that people see in their newsfeed. News stories then can quickly go viral and be significantly affected by link-sharing bots that are manipulating what people see online. If the goal of certain bots is political propaganda they may be able to influence what people read and what their opinions are on certain subjects.

Studies of the 2016 elections suggested that bots generated tweets promoting certain candidates. Although most bots tend to be ideologically mixed, they can have specific political agendas and a goal in mind as far the news stories and articles they are sharing. It is even possible for foreign governments to use bots as online propaganda tools in order to cause problems within the United States.

Bots can be a serious issue of integrity on the internet if they have the power of making certain stories seem more popular than others. They may have the ability to sway people’s opinion by dictating what information is exposed to them. It is something to consider for those who are concerned about the possible negative influence of bots online.

Matt Ramage is founder of Emarketed a web marketing agency located in Los Angeles. He loves coffee, good design, and helping businesses improve their look and getting found on the Internet.

Give Your Existing Content a Facelift

Give Your Existing Content a Facelift

Although your focus in marketing may be to always continue creating new content, there are some benefits to revamping old content. Some of your best content may perform well and get tons of qualified traffic but it is no longer affecting your ranking. Other content may be under performing and not helping your website in any way.

Making a few changes to old content can help you boost your ranking again and get better performance out of content that hasn’t had much impact. It can be helpful to revitalize old content because Google likes to see that content is current and has been more recently published. Old content may not perform well in the search engine results simply because it isn’t recent enough to get a good ranking.

Re-publishing old content with some changes can give you a quick boost in your ranking and even help double your traffic. When you update the publish date on an old blog post Google will recognize it as new content and give your site a higher ranking accordingly. You can keep content fresh by changing its format such as turning a blog with high traffic into a YouTube video or turning a video into a blog.

Diversifying one piece of content by changing it into different formats online is an easy way to keep content that performs well and take full advantage of it. You can also make changes for old content that didn’t perform as well using strategies that you have more experience with now. You may be able to get more results out of underperforming content by retooling it and publishing it again.

Although much of your old content can still be useful you do not need to re-publish everything. Choose content that you believe is still relevant and will work to boost your ranking again if you bring it back and you will see better results.

Matt Ramage is founder of Emarketed a web marketing agency located in Los Angeles. He loves coffee, good design, and helping businesses improve their look and getting found on the Internet.

GDPR Updates

GDPR Updates

Privacy policies have been changing rapidly as people are getting their inboxes flooded with requests to view new terms and conditions. Developers are changing their privacy policies in order to comply with new laws regulating user privacy. The General Data and Protection Regulation is a recent law that gives users new data protection rights and organizations that don’t comply could be faced with significant fines.

The emails that companies have been sending out regarding their privacy policies contain important information to users so that they are aware of how their data is being used. The new law requires that companies have user consent in order to collect their data and that users should only be required to share data that is necessary to make their services work. If a company wants to use data that is not essential information then users can deny them consent.

Although companies will be fined for not complying with the law, most are trying to find ways to get consent to collect as much data as possible for advertising revenue. They may make it much easier to give consent than it is to opt out which is one way of persuading people to provide them with the data that they want. Some companies are even stating that continued use of their service implies consent which makes it difficult for users to say no.

It is important for users to understand when they are giving consent and what they are actually consenting to in order for the law to truly protect user privacy rights. Reading through emails and notifications before consenting to how their data is used is essential for every user. Make sure to be informed about your data protection rights and only give consent for essential information to be used by any particular service.

Matt Ramage is founder of Emarketed a web marketing agency located in Los Angeles. He loves coffee, good design, and helping businesses improve their look and getting found on the Internet.

How Much Does Workplace Culture Play into a Successful Business?

How Much Does Workplace Culture Play into a Successful Business?

There are so many factors that can influence whether a new business succeeds or fails and one of those is the workplace culture that a company creates. If employees are not confident about what they do or they feel underappreciated it can impact the way that they interact with customers and dictate the entire success of the business. A more positive and effective work culture is one that empowers employees and helps them feel that what they do is important.

Every level of employee in a successful company needs to be empowered so that even lower level team members have plenty of work satisfaction. They will also need to be able to communicate fluidly in a system that is not structured in a hierarchical way that prevents lower level from being able to speak directly to management. A positive and open work culture helps improve customer service and benefits the company as a whole.

It is helpful for a company to have core values that every employee is aware of so that they know and understand the culture. Identify what your business cares about the most and communicate that to all of your employees so that they know what the greater meaning and purpose is behind what they do. Employees need to feel that they are part of the bigger picture of the company’s mission so that they consider themselves instrumental to a goal.

Establishing work culture can be crucial to how a business presents itself to customers and the way that employees express the company’s values. Talking about your culture to employees, improving the flow of communication and helping each employee feel valuable can have a positive impact on the business. Many different factors can create success but one of the key strategies is workplace culture.

Matt Ramage is founder of Emarketed a web marketing agency located in Los Angeles. He loves coffee, good design, and helping businesses improve their look and getting found on the Internet.

Basic Social Media Post Checklist

Basic Social Media Post Checklist

The more effort, time and planning that you put into social media posts the more benefits you are going to see from them. It can be difficult to compete for attention online so you need to have certain strategies in place to get a higher engagement rate.

These are some guidelines for how to put together an effective social media post.

Use Attention Grabbing Headlines

You need to give users something that they will be immediately drawn to through your headline. You can use tricks like promising a specific benefit, asking a question to get more interaction, creating a sense of urgency and triggering curiosity or emotion.

Include Hashtags

It is important with social media posts to include hashtags because they can increase the visibility of the post based on popular topics. More people are likely to see your post if you include a clickable hashtag that they can look through and see your content.

Use Quotes to Provide Compelling Ideas

Many effective social media posts incorporate quotes that provide people with information, inspiration or knowledge. Quotes from a known expert can be especially compelling because people will want to hear their insight on certain subjects related to your brand. Including an image or graphic can make quotes stand out and catch users’ attention.

Create Highly Visual Posts

When it comes to social media, images can be critical because visual posts tend to get more engagement, shares and clicks. Even if you are posting an article it can be helpful for the featured image from the article to appear within the post. The images that you include in your posts can quickly get more of a response than simply adding text.

There are many other ways to improve your social media posts but these are some of the most essential elements to focus on as a basic checklist for your content.

Matt Ramage is founder of Emarketed a web marketing agency located in Los Angeles. He loves coffee, good design, and helping businesses improve their look and getting found on the Internet.

UI and UX… What’s the Difference?

UI and UX

The world of design can be categorized in different ways and one of the distinctions that can be helpful to learn about is UI versus UX. When people refer to UX they are talking about User Experience Design while UI refers to User Interface Design. Both elements work together and are equally crucial in the creation of a complete and effective design.

The world of UX design is a more technical and analytical field while UI is more focused on graphic design. UX has more to do with the function of a product such as the code that gives it structure and UI is related more to the presentation and cosmetics of it. The two are both equally important to a product’s success and each would not be able to exist without the other.

Essentially user experience design or UX is the process of enhancing customer satisfaction by improving the usability, ease of use and pleasure of using a product for customers. Products that are functional and easy to use have a good UX design and tend to work better for businesses. The UI of a product as more to do with appearance and how it represents the brand which can also be very important for customer satisfaction.

When it comes to product design, functionality as well as the look and feel need to be the highest level in order to achieve more success. The balance of both types of design can determine how customers interact and enjoy a product. Something needs to be easy to use and look great otherwise you risk negative reactions from customers.

UX and UI designers work closely together to make a product that works great, is aesthetically pleasing and most importantly appeals directly to customers and sells well.

Matt Ramage is founder of Emarketed a web marketing agency located in Los Angeles. He loves coffee, good design, and helping businesses improve their look and getting found on the Internet.

Best Practices For Customer Retention

This is a guest post by Frank Vitetta who works as a freelance marketer for Metrilo.com.

Over the last few years, I have been increasingly involved in retention marketing and I have noticed how this new terminology is replacing the old “brand loyalty” term.

Best practices for customer retention

(source Google Trends)

Before we go into details for efficient customer retention, let’s ask a simple question. Imagine that you are a stamp collector, a dedicated gatherer of valuable assets. What is easier – to nurture your collection by buying protectable holders or simply search for a new set of stamps once you lose or destroy your existing ones?

Even a child would state that this is a silly question. If you cherish your collection, you will try to keep it intact. Customer retention works in a similar way. Your users are the valuable stamps. It is way cheaper to keep the ones you already acquired than to convert new ones. With the added bonus of adding revenue to your business. Because customers, unlike the stamps, generate profits for the whole lifetime of your relationship (Customer Lifetime Value).

  • Even a 5% increase in retention rates may boost your profits by up to 95% (Harvard Business School)
  • 4/5 of your future business comes from approximately 20% of your current, loyal customers (Gartner Group)
  • The chances of selling to an existing customer are capped at 70%, while new prospective customers add up to only 20% (Marketing Metrics)

Customer Retention As a Top Priority

A core of loyal customers is the backbone of your successful business. This is why customer retention is a must. It is essential to build a lasting relationship with your customers, and this comes easier than you would think. If you care about your customer base, they will notice it – amazing customer service, high level of engagement, and also education – these are key points for an efficient customer retention platform.

A noticeable percentage of business owners approach customer retention with minimal care. They assume that retention marketing works on its own. But an existing customer base is not enough to keep your business going. You will need to invest more in keeping those customers. And it will cost you a lot less than leaving the future of your store on just a good faith.

Here are some of the most promising customer retention strategies. Some may suit your business perfectly; others may not be your type of action. In any case, you can only benefit from them.

Customer Loyalty

Customer Retention Strategies For Optimal Success

Put simply, it is close to impossible to retain a customer who doesn’t notice you. They have to pay attention to your idea, to your products and deals. Like every relationship, business-to-customer also requires decent communication and engagement. An engaged and satisfied customer is a loyal customer.

A Rebel With a Cause – Customer Retention Basics

All of us embrace the idea of standing for something. Even the most rebellious people stand for their values. And a mass percentage of consumers share this ideology when it comes to picking favorite brands. Research shows that over 60% of loyal customers express “shared values” as the main reason for choosing a particular brand (Corporate Executive Board).

Retention marketing relies heavily on the personal connection between you and your customers. Although you can’t meet each of them in person, you can make it seem this way. A real connection is generated through personalized experiences for them. If you can make any customer feel special, they will gain the sense of knowing you. Not only as a brand/store leader but as a virtual friend. And this should be a key component in your customer retention strategy.

Summon the Inner Catalyst

Every customer, in general, chooses their preferred brands by resemblance. If the product/s vision and purpose relates to customer values and beliefs, it is more likely to provoke interest. In order to accomplish strong customer interest, you need to study your customer base thoroughly. Identify the core of loyal customers, and develop a message for their needs and goals. Every promising customer retention strategy has to be equipped accordingly.

It is easier to satisfy an existing demand rather than create an entirely new one. You can’t be sure how many customers will relate to your innovative ideas. The safer and more profitable route is the first one. In times of such competitive marketing, it is essential to present your customers with the most accurate answer to their desires.

Take Customer Experience to Another Level

You will be surprised how low-cost customer retention initiatives work on your clients. The key factor here is uniqueness. Think of welcome surprises, milestones, and customized rewards for each customer. It may seem like a lot of work, but it will pay off greatly.

Add a bonus item with their second or third purchase. It doesn’t need to be something overwhelming. Even a handwritten Thank you-note will make them feel special. And always rely on the surprise. Don’t proclaim bonuses on your website. Keep it on the low side. This way, every surprise gift will summon a feeling of personal involvement. And this type of retention marketing creates the most loyal customers.

Customer Loyalty

Passion, Engagement, and Responsive actions in Retention Marketing

First and foremost – care for your customers. This includes friendly behavior, gifts, and bonuses, but also innovation. Make sure to be aware of new technologies and ways to benefit your customers. Every properly answered question adds up to the Customer Lifetime Value (CLV). Every piece of customer feedback enables you to react to their needs. Every proactive customer retention initiative expands your loyal customer base.

We know how tough it can be to satisfy every customer. This is why you need an efficient customer support system. Hire professionals, rather than temps to do the job. Optimize your automated customer support tools, and invest in real employees to cover every customer’s need. After all, your clients are the people who dictate the place and time of engagement with brands. Follow their leads and try to be everywhere. At any time given.

Don’t Hesitate to Implement Customer Retention Platforms

In relation to the previous point, being “everywhere” is easiest when you engage in the digital world. Metrilo.com is SaaS platform, oriented towards e-commerce retention marketing. With their help, you can track purchase history, campaign success, and the most promising existing customers.

To identify the strengths and weaknesses of your customer retention actions is crucial. With enough data, you can greatly boost customer lifetime value, average order values, and even conversion rates.

If you want to check our more retention marketing platforms, my friend Tom has got a nice site here: http://retentionmarketing.co/ with the right platform you can expect a 67% rise in Customer Lifetime Value, along with 39% better conversion from emails, and 48% better retention rates.

Is brand loyalty dead? Let me know what you think.

Matt Ramage is founder of Emarketed a web marketing agency located in Los Angeles. He loves coffee, good design, and helping businesses improve their look and getting found on the Internet.

5 Signs Your Website Hosting Company is Unreliable

5 Signs Your Website Hosting Company is Unreliable

Where your website is hosted can be just important as any other part of your marketing campaign. Without reliable service, your site might not be seen when it really matters, including holidays and other important high traffic days. Here are some signs of an unreliable web host, if any red flags come up, it might just be time to switch!

1) Offering deals that sound too good to be true:  Are you signing up for plans that only “cost” $1 a month or come with unlimited bandwidth? While these things sounds great on the surface, make sure you know what you’re getting yourself into. For example, buying the bare minimum package and having to add more services (which can really add up).
Having an unlimited plan sounds great, but is everyone receiving the same deal? At some point, traffic can overload servers and your unlimited plan may result in a lot of website down time.

2) Slow website loading time: Sometimes, having a big or super busy website can slow down your load time. Other times, your hosting company just might be overloaded, causing your pages to slow down and deter visitors. Check out Google PageSpeed Insights to see what the problem is.

3) Bad reviews and reputation: Do your research and check out what customers have to say on review sites. It’s understandable to have a few bad reviews but if the overwhelming majority is negative, it’s not really worth it to save yourself a couple of bucks each month for a semi-reliable host.

4) Unreliable customer service: Is your web hosting company closed on weekends? Do they keep you on hold for hours when you’re trying to call? A reliable company offers support when you need it and through different ways: email, phone, online chat, forums, social media and more. Don’t limit yourself on when you can talk to your web host.

5) Bad Advice: Some web developers handle the hosting aspect for you, but they can also offer very risky advice. For example, I recently heard a client was advised to let his domain expire and then re-purchase it! All because the developer was too lazy to get the login information needed to renew the site…

Learn more about reliable website hosting and call Emarketed for a free consultation today.

Matt Ramage is founder of Emarketed a web marketing agency located in Los Angeles. He loves coffee, good design, and helping businesses improve their look and getting found on the Internet.

Why You Should Feature Case Studies on Your Website

Why You Should Feature Case Studies on Your Website

There are many different types of content you can feature on your website but many businesses overlook the benefits of including case studies. They can be a great promotional tool that helps demonstrate why your product or business is effective and what you can offer to potential customers. Businesses that are looking for some fresh and interesting content that will provide a boost to their marketing efforts should look into case studies.

By producing case studies you are providing customers with definite proof that your products or services work and they will be more effective than your competition. Within the case study you can include evidence with specific facts and numbers that demonstrate what your product or service is able to do for customers. The data and information you provide will give readers a compelling argument as to why they should purchase something from you.

The template for a case study usually includes an example of a client problem and how your business was able to solve it for them. This helps showcase a specific instance in which you were able to really help someone through your work. You can start working on a case study by interviewing some of your best customers to get their testimonies so that their story can be featured.

Talking to your clients can give you the information you need and they might even be able to share facts and figures you can include in the case study. Real stories that show your product or service as a concrete solution to a problem can be a major selling point to include on your website. Featuring a few case studies gives your business greater credibility because your customers are willing to share their experiences.

Case studies can be a very convincing addition to your content and including them on your website may help sway customers to make a purchase.

Matt Ramage is founder of Emarketed a web marketing agency located in Los Angeles. He loves coffee, good design, and helping businesses improve their look and getting found on the Internet.