Local B2B SEO And Other Marketing Using YouTube

I want to give thanks to Greg over at Search Simplicity for inviting me to contribute to his blog on search engine optimization (SEO) and other search engine marketing (SEM) topics.  The topic of this article is about using YouTube videos to rank in the organic results for local business-to-business (B2B) keyword phrases.  It also touches on other methods of getting traffic to the YouTube videos which may have a longer-term benefit besides just organic rankings:

 

In the article I reference a Dallas-area client who runs a digital marketing agency.  They use technology, art, video and other media to create unique experiences for their clients.  This is the sub-niche of marketing called “experiential marketing” or “disruptive marketing”.  They wanted some help with both local B2B and national B2B keyword phrases.  Here is the video they gave me which first showed up on Vimeo but now is also on the company’s official YouTube channel:

This is a more advanced version of local B2B, as I was able to include it on an optimized press release here.  This video is now ranking for one the company’s desired “Dallas” phrases.

For more traditional local B2B keywords, such as the “Fort Worth parking lot repair” example mentioned in the Search Simplicity article, the video currently ranks well in the search engines for the phrase.  It is not a terrific quality video, but it shows a typical walk-through of what a repair job might look like in Tarrant County.  Here is the URL:

 

If you are interested in more about using online video (YouTube, Vimeo or other) for local B2B marketing then you are welcome to contact me with your questions.  Thank you for your interest and you are welcome to share this article with those whom you think may find it to be relevant and of interest.

The Merits Of Internet Marketing For Local Live Events

I want to thank Greg Smith for the opportunity to contribute a post to his website this week.  He was kind enough to let me share some suggestions and thoughts about the merits of incorporating internet marketing for local events, either free to attend or requiring paid ticket admission.  Here is the link to the article I posted:

Greg and I share some of the same thoughts about tiered link building, promotion of “Tier 1” properties as standalone landing pages and much more.  What this means to you is that, much like most local businesses only care about the phone ringing (or receiving e-mails from qualified prospects), whenever you promote live events you primarily care only about how many people show up to the event/game/show/etc.  There are over 20 online marketing methods to get the word out, and some offer you benefit long after the event has concluded.

Should you find the post to interesting then you are welcome to share it or visit more about our event marketing information and consulting here:

Making The Phone Ring With Online Marketing

One of the biggest challenges of helping clients with their online marketing efforts is to quantify an increase in business.  There are several ways to track different online metrics, but the biggest question is:

“Is my phone ringing with new customers (clients)?”  Equivalent questions could be:

  • “Am I getting more e-mail opt-ins?”
  • “Am I getting more people following me on XYZ social media property?”
  • “Am I getting more walk-ins to my store?”
  • “Am I getting more attendees to my live event?”
  • “Are people ordering more from my website?”

The challenge for an internet marketing consultant is to manage expectations from the beginning of the conversation.  There is only so much that can be addressed by the marketer who is brought in from the outside, especially if the business does not have an in-house marketing director or other salaried staff member in charge of marketing.

Here is a quick breakdown of topics to discuss with any online marketing consultant or agency when it comes to various ways to make your phone ring:

  • Do you have a defined web page (e.g. home page, inner page on your website, YouTube video) to send your prospective audience?
  • Is the audience you are trying to reach:
    • a first-time prospect who was NOT referred by anyone previously?
    • a first-time prospect who was referred by a current customer/client?
    • a current customer/client to whom you are asking to purchase something new?
  • Do you have a simple, easy to understand request (“call to action”) for this person to follow?
  • Is there at least one (or more) method of tracking the activity, including ratios?
  • If you are going to use online paid advertising, have you narrowed down the web properties (or search engine keywords) on which your ad(s) will appear?  If so, do you have strategies in place to prevent your costs from getting out of control?
  • Do you have a method(s) to have this person join one of your lists in case he/she/they do not choose to do business with you at this time?
    • If so, what reasons have you given the person to join your list(s) if he/she has not done so already?
  • If you are getting targeted traffic to your site, but you are not getting phone calls – or at least joining your list – then what are you going to change first:
    • the headline?
    • what the emotional benefit (not feature) is that you are offering?
    • price?
    • an appearance change (font style, color, placement of the offer)?
    • something else?
  • If you are choosing search engine optimization (SEO) as a strategy, where are you ranking right now?  For which keywords/phrases?  How much of a ranking improvement do you need?
    • If your website needs lots of work (on the website + link building to the website), then do you have another web property that you don’t mind ranking on the first page of the search engines in the meantime (aka “Next Best SEO“)?

 

These are just a few of the questions to discuss in your initial conversations with any SEO agency or internet marketing consultant.  If you are interested in getting answers to these questions – and many more – to help you make the phone ring, then you are welcome to contact us.  Thank you.

 

LinkedIn SEO For Small Businesses

Thank you to Mike Kawula for the opportunity to contribute to his recent blog post about tips to help small businesses use LinkedIn.  There were some pretty interesting, and potentially helpful, tips in this post:

One thing I mentioned is how an optimized LinkedIn page (personal page or company page) can be optimized for the search engines.  Most people don’t know that it is possible for their respective LinkedIn pages (including a company’s product/service pages) to rank in the search engines for specific phrases.  Consider adding this strategy to your SEO efforts by using intelligent link building services to your LinkedIn page.

Feel free to contact me with your questions.

Google Penguin Update Recovery Tips Podcast

The other day I was invited by JenningsWire/AnnieJenningsPR.com to be the guest on a podcast.  I was asked these kinds of questions regarding the recent Google update and what kind of Google Penguin update recovery tips may be useful to help businesses (both local and national) improve their search engine optimization (SEO) efforts:

  • Google had its Penguin 2.1 update in the beginning of October. What took place?
  • Why is link building still important? Shouldn’t people just be focused on social media now?
  • Some SEO professionals recommend to their clients that they build links in “tiers”. Why do you think this is the case?
  • What else is missing from most companies’ SEO efforts?
  • Researching keywords has changed recently as well. What recommendations do you offer that are unique and not commonly suggested?

You can listen to the podcast here or click the image below:

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The audio content is roughly 10 minutes long.  One of the topics we covered is about using intelligent link building in the upcoming months.  Click this link for more information to read a recent article about which types of links to consider for your new link building efforts.

Best Tier 1 Links For Penguin 2.1 Recovery Strategies

If you follow the search engine algorithm updates then you may be fully aware of the impact that the recent Google Penguin 2.1 update had worldwide on searches for both local and national keyword phrases (queries).  There are many new elements to SEO now including:

  • link disavow tool usage
  • anchor text ratio modification
  • trust elements like privacy policies, disclaimers, etc.
  • page loading times and mobile capabilities

One way to help clients recover from any recent Google updates is to give their algorithms verifiable proof that you are offering Google’s users (and the same with Yahoo, Bing and other search engines) quality information and relevance.  You must show the algorithm that your desired web property (website, social media account, YouTube channel, etc.) is authoritative.  A great way to do this is to increase the amount of properly-formatted Tier 1 links.

Tier 1 links are those web pages which have authority and you are comfortable having point directly to your desired web property.  Which Tier 1 link types, however, has been the subject of much discussion after the Google Penguin 2.1 update.

Greg from SearchSimplicity.com was kind enough to let me publish a guest post on his blog this morning.  It discusses the roughly 30 types of Tier 1 links which have the potential to be “friendly” to the search engines after the recent updates.  A good percentage of these link types also have the ability to drive direct traffic, eliminating sole dependence of your web traffic coming from the search engines.

Here is the article:

If you need help with these types of links then you are welcome to contact me or discover more about buying relevant links here.

What To Do After Your Online Video Has Been Produced

One of the questions I have received recently in the post-Google update environment (called the “Penguin” and “Panda” updates) is how to get more traffic to a client’s online videos after they have been produced.  Many business owners mistakenly think that their video can go “viral” much like the entertainment videos they see on YouTube like those of animals, babies, sports, and other non-business-related videos which get shared in high volume.

The first thing to consider is that you will need to have realistic expectations.  A simple slide show video, or even a well-produced corporate video from a Dallas video production company, is likely to never reach tens of thousands of legitimate views on a site like YouTube.  What you will want to achieve is the realistic goal of reaching 50-100 qualified prospects (either local or national) per month once the marketing process starts.

Should you use a video-sharing site like YouTube, instead of hosting the video on your website with a service like Amazon S3 or a similar one, then there are several ways to get your video in front of potential customers/clients.  Here are just some of the ways:

  • Optimize the video (and your YouTube) channel for the keywords you research which are likely to be entered (aka “queried”) by your first-time prospective customers
    • This will help you to rank within YouTube for the desired phrases
    • This will help you to begin to rank in Google for the same keyword phrases simultaneously
  • The link to your video can be sent to your current e-mail lists with the request for your audience to share the video or endorse it on social media platforms like Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, etc.
    • This is because your e-mail and social media list members likely have peers, friends, family and others they know who could be potential customers as well
  • Use paid advertising WITHIN YouTube to have your video appear on relevant searches AND competitors’ videos
    • This is a little-known tactic which can help you get a quality video in front of people who otherwise would not know that you exist
  • If you are introducing a new product, service or concept to the marketplace then consider embedding your video inside a paid press release distribution service
    • You can target specific industries and/or geographic regions as part of this paid distribution service
    • Your video will get exposure online to people who may be looking for one thing, but if they see your announcement + video then they may be convinced to contact you for the better alternative
  • You can embed your YouTube videos inside LinkedIn company product pages
    • This is terrific for B2B and other searches done within LinkedIn
    • It also helps with the search engine optimization for your videos
  • RSS syndication of the videos on your YouTube channel so that they get embedded on relevant websites which you do not even know exist
  • Many other methods of video marketing distribution to reach first-time prospects who have never heard of you personally, your business or your brands

Obviously all of this deals with the method of video exposure and distribution.  It also assumes that you have quality content to share which is NOT merely a sales pitch.   By “quality” I mean any of the following (this is NOT an inclusive list) which add “value” to the experience of the visitor:

  • Educating people on how to do something
  • Entertaining them and/or intriguing the viewers to the point where they simply must click through to your website or call you
  • Proving that you are an authority on a subject (e.g. a recording of you presenting at a seminar or conference)
  • Testimonial videos
  • Using animation or other videos to give reassurance and possible solutions to  high-emotion topics (e.g. financial problems, family matters and the like)
  • Proving or disproving an urban myth pervasive in your industry
  • Slide show video showing a step-by-step process of what a customer may experience at his/her home or office (e.g. a driveway repair project)
  • Etc.

Knowing how to distribute your video intelligently can give you a competitive edge, especially in a region like the Dallas Fort Worth area.  For example, let’s say that you have a terrific new service which can be fulfilled in all 200+ towns which comprise the DFW region (all counties).  The problem is that your business is based in a city other than Dallas or Fort Worth, so you may believe that you are at a disadvantage due to the competition (in the physical world) coming out of those two cities.  You could be based in Denton, Plano, Frisco, McKinney, Arlington or any of the other larger DFW cities which also may have steep competition for what you are selling.

By using a combination of intelligent video marketing, you can grow your business in the larger cities and towns without having to be located specifically in that area.

Feel free to contact us with your questions about your specific situation and how we nay be able to help you.

 

Dallas AdWords Consultant – What You Can Expect

If you represent a business in the Dallas Fort Worth area, or any major U.S. city, then you may have considered using online paid advertising to reach prospective customers or clients.  Many businesses like the choice of Google AdWords because it offers them flexibility in three ways:

  • advertising on the Google Search Network (Google search engine results pages)
  • advertising on the Google Display Network (showing up on relevant websites and blogs/forums which permit Google to run ads)
  • advertising within YouTube, including targeting specific phrases or even specific competitors

Regarding using the Google Search Network, which is the one most commonly used by businesses looking to reach out to those directly searching for their products and services, you may not be familiar with all of advanced options within your account.  While the natural tendency is to say “skip it”, neglecting these could cause two issues:

  • your ads do not get enough exposure due to issues like your ad’s “Quality Score” or other concerns
  • you may be paying more per click than you should be

If you are considering a consultant to help you with your online pay per click (PPC) strategy, especially if you use AdWords, then here are some of the topics which should be analyzed within your account:

* Reviewing account settings and coordination with other Google services such as Webmaster Tools, Analytics, YouTube (if so desired), etc.

* Campaign settings analysis which includes narrowing campaigns to one device, whether or not optimized for clicks, percentage of ad scheduling, ad rotation, combining display with search network, etc.

* Ad Group analysis which includes multiple ads for split testing, limiting keywords per ad group, etc.

* Keyword analysis which includes percentage of broad match vs. phrase/exact match, adding/editing negative keywords, Quality Score analysis, problem status keywords, etc.

* Ad management analysis which includes:  Disapproved Ads management, altering display URL if needed, campaigns having ads with ad extensions, punctuation on the headling (e.g. “?”), etc.

* Ad copy analysis which includes call to action, any scarcity/urgency/intrigue, keyword in the ad

If your business spends $5000 a month or more on the Google AdWords Search Network, then it is possible that your consultant can help you get more clicks for the same ad spend each month; or you may be able to get the same number of targeted clicks while trimming 5% or more from your monthly ad spend.  Sometimes the percentage savings can be even greater if your consultant discovers wasted money on clicks which are not relevant or are poorly performing due to the page where the prospects are being sent.

As a side benefit, enhancing your pages where paid traffic is being sent also has the potential to improve your SEO efforts in the other search engines.

If you spend a respectable amount each month in AdWords, and you would like assistance to enhance your ROI, then you are welcome to contact us with your questions.

 

 

Reaching The Entire DFW Market

Some business owners throughout the Dallas Fort Worth region truly can serve the entire DFW market and even additional markets.  Unlike smaller services which can serve a realistic radius of 5-10 miles (or an even smaller radius), these businesses have a different vision such as:

  • there is enough profit margin in the transaction to justify the time and expense to travel to a small town across the DFW Metroplex and conduct business
  • the business is so unique, or perceived to be so specialized, that prospective customers across the region want the product, service or other benefits associated with the particular business
  • the business can ship products and/or already has representatives near to the smaller towns in DFW

One question is which types of businesses can justify marketing to a wider radius than just the regular small 5-10 mile radius which is common with many local businesses?  Another question is how to reach the smaller towns without having to become a member of each local chamber of commerce or placing ads in every newspaper or print publication across the region?

Types Of Businesses Which Qualify

Here is just a short list of the types of businesses which can pursue larger-radius marketing at the DFW level or even state-wide:

  • Corporate relocation services
  • Specialty legal and financial services
  • Industrial products
  • Higher end home improvement services (e.g. interior design, remodeling, etc.)
  • Custom home builders
  • Surveyors
  • Higher end home repair services (sewer line installation, etc.)
  • Etc.

How To Reach All Of DFW And Beyond

The first thing you need to know is that there are over 200 towns and cities which comprise the DFW region.  This is not just Dallas, Collin, Denton or Tarrant Counties either.  The neighboring counties also are included as there can be highly-qualified prospects in the small towns throughout every DFW county.

To narrow down the options of how to reach these people, and do so in a budget-sensitive manner you have a few options:

  • TV ads — obviously you must be hyper-vigilant about your budget and any tracking you can generate here
  • Same with radio ads
  • Classified ads are a great way to get exposure.  Be sure to optimize your ads to include the towns and cities which you serve; and be sure to play nice by the terms of service and posting rules for the various online classified ads you intend to use
  • Direct mail targeting specific neighborhoods in specific zip codes.  A good mailing list broker, who can highly target your prospects across the region, would be a very wise investment here
  • Paid press release distribution can be beneficial, especially if you mention specific towns in your content
  • Pay Per Click (AdWords) is a smart way to start.  You can target each specific town, but you want to send the traffic to optimized (town-specific) landing pages on your website.  Also, be sure that there is some sort of benefit easily visible to the prospective customer and a “call to action” (e.g. “call today” or “download this coupon”)
    • Note that there are other pay-per-click services besides Google AdWords, Yahoo’s advertising, and Bing’s advertising services.  Please contact us for these alternative options where your competition may not be advertising
  • For business-to-business (B2B) advertising in the Dallas Fort Worth region you may consider targeted advertising within LinkedIn
  • You can do demographic-based targeted advertising, especially town by town, in Facebook.  Just note that:
    • depending on the devices your prospects use, you may not get complete exposure on Facebook to those using mobile devices
    • you likely will have a higher conversion rate if you send the traffic to a page you control within Facebook.  Most Facebook users don’t like to be led automatically off of Facebook at first, so consider sending the traffic to Facebook page you control regularly which has consistently-updated benefit-laden content (coupons, discounts, helpful tips, entertaining videos, etc.)
  • Search Engine Optimization (SEO).  This is one of the trickier, but possibly soundest ways to get hyper-targeted prospects.  You can have created for you a multi-niche website (or a blog which resides alongside your website) which has town-specific optimized pages.  Ideally, the content on each of the 200+ towns is unique including article content, images, any embedded videos, etc.  Just so long as the combination of text/images/videos is unique you should be good, especially for phrases people type in which may have relatively low competition in the search engines.

The latter option (the blog/website with town-optimized pages) gives you additional benefit.  For example, here is a website which has town-optimized pages for varying business niches.  Here is one for a series of highly-related niches.  And here is a site with optimized pages for just one niche.

The benefits here are:

  • That you can control specific content for each town or city in which you want to market.  For example, if you want to give coupons in one town but not another you can do so
  • You have optimized pages to which you can send your pay per click (PPC) traffic such as traffic Google AdWords.  This increases the odds of gaining a higher “quality score” for your ads (assuming everything else is done right) and possibly saving money by reducing your per-click costs
  • The optimized page could rank well in the search engines for the times when the phrase is entered alongside the specific town (e.g. “your business Plano TX”)
  • You even go “deeper” than the specific towns.  For example, if you want to offer incentives to people in specific HOA’s or parts of a town then you can do so.

If you would help on any of these topics then you are welcome to contact us with your specific needs.  Thank you for your time and consideration to share this post.

Benefits Of A Dallas Fort Worth PPC AdWords Consultant

If you are looking to grow your business in the Dallas Fort Worth region, whether you are seeking new local or regional customers, there are several ways to get traffic to your website and other web properties.  Of course, you would like to have all of the traffic you can handle coming to you from no-cost sources.  These sources include:

  • ranking well in the search engines for high-traffic broad terms people enter (keywords) relevant to what you are selling
  • ranking well in the search engines for terms (keywords) which are indicative of someone wanting to do business with you right away
  • free press release sites
  • people promoting your services on local online forums which have high degrees of trust
  • people promoting (endorsing) you to their colleagues and friends on sites like LinkedIn
  • having your video “go viral” on YouTube
  • getting free media coverage from the websites of local TV, radio and newspapers across DFW
  • etc.

Unfortunately, you may not have the initial budget, luck or skill to consistently get that type of traffic to your website or other web properties (e.g. your Twitter and Facebook pages) where people can do business with your Dallas Fort Worth-based business.  You also may have a new website where you want to test how well the website’s aesthetics help to convert first-time visitors to call you, e-mail you, download a free e-book, or take some other “call to action”.

In these types of situations you may want to consider using some form paid advertising.  These can include paid press release online distribution services, demographic target ads on Facebook, and the more traditional pay-per-click (PPC) advertising.  The benefits to this last type of advertising can include the following (and more):

  • You can control how much you want to spend on a per-click, per-day or per campaign amount
  • You can choose whether you want to advertise on the search engine results pages and/or on relevant websites which either focus on Dallas Fort Worth topics or are being looked at by people with DFW I.P. addresses
  • You can determine if you want your ads to appear on mobile devices, laptop/desktop devices or all devices
  • You can control (to some degree) what time of day, and what days of the week, your ads will run
  • There are call tracking capabilities (in some regards) which can help you determine the effectiveness
  • You can run ads which have a maps “marker” indicating your place of business in the DFW region

Google has its pay-per-click (PPC) or cost-per-1000-impressions (CPM) ad network which every Dallas Fort Worth business owner can use.  This is called Google AdWords.  The AdWords system permits a business owner to:

  • include goal tracking and other conversion tracking
  • integration with Google Analytics
  • keyword-level tracking
  • targeting specific sites which have placed an “open billboard” for Google to place relevant ads
  • etc.

From the same login and password you even can promote your specific YouTube videos and do pay-per-view (PPV) marketing, which is the YouTube video equivalent of traditional pay per click advertising.  In that instance you can promote your video to rank in YouTube for when people make specific searches inside of YouTube; or you can pay to get placement on a specific video which you believe would attract a certain percentage of that video’s viewers to your business’ video.

As you can see, this type of advertising can be more extensive than you may have first considered.  One note to consider is that many DFW business owners are overpaying for clicks during their initial attempts at Google AdWords or other pay per click marketing.  There are several ways to either:

  • get the same number of targeted clicks for a lower per-click price
  • get more targeted clicks for the same monthly advertising spend

Hopefully you can understand the possible need for a pay per click (PPC) and AdWords consultant in Dallas Fort Worth to help local businesses make intelligent decisions.  Click the link to learn more about that type of service and what to ask when you seek assistance to help you get more from your advertising budget.