Shut it down.  Shut everything down.  “Don’t spend one more dime” they said.  I was surprised by this reaction, to say the least.  I was like…

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You see, Anchor has been in Fort Worth and running as a digital marketing and design agency since 2008.  Through the years we’ve strategized with clients on marketing efforts to spend budgets wisely and most effectively.  Along with helping larger companies, we have a passion for helping small businesses grow here in our hometown.

Our team had worked hard on these campaigns.  Like I said above, working with and growing great small businesses in Fort Worth is something that drives us.  We planned out buyer journeys for the client’s personas, built landing pages, created offers and…analytics told us we were converting some pretty high percentages.  By all defined measurements, the campaigns were running successfully.  In fact, I can’t recall converting such high percentages before.

So why stop marketing dollars now?

In one word, it was capacity.  The campaigns had actually been so effective that our client ran out of capacity to take on any new customers.  After I heard that the issue was not with the performance of our work and completely to do with the fact that the work had outperformed their expectations, I was like…

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Ecstatic & Elated

Ecstatic that the client was able to see such great return on the campaigns & Elated  (and proud) that our team achieved such great performance levels.

What’s next for everyone?  Well the client needs some time to re-evaluate the growth plan.  Anchor is continuing that type of work for other clients – and excited to be doing it!

How To Tweet

The shelf life of any given tweet is a mere 24 minutes. How do you get maximum exposure and ROI for that tweet? There’s a science to it, and it involves more than blind fate and a dash of good luck. The good news is that you don’t have to be a social media management company to get it right!  Here’s how to tweet for business:

  • Use hashtags correctly. Always include at least one hashtag to obtain exposure and repeat visibility, but don’t go overboard. A tweet that has more than two or three hashtags will look spammy, and will take away from the overall experience of the tweet. Don’t blindly hashtag! It’s a good idea to do your research first. Find out what hashtags are trending and relevant, as well as hashtags that people consistently follow/look up. It can also be wise to include more specific hashtags that people may be looking for in your area when hunting for your kind of business. For instance, if you’re a photographer in Charlotte, NC, you should research what hashtags people are using to find photographers in your neck of the woods. If your tweet includes #charlottencphotographer and no one else has ever used that tag before, you just wasted 24 precious characters on something no one will probably ever look up.
  • Include a link. Always, always, always link back to the related blog/article (bonus points if it’s your own blog!) that you’re tweeting about. Make it easy for your followers to do what you want – to click. For instance, the more clicks you get on a link that leads back to your website, the more hits you’ll get on your website, meaning more potential for business.
  • Include a great visual. Whether it’s a gif, a meme, a photograph or a video, your tweet will need something to grab attention. A cunningly written tweet is not enough – it must go side by side with a great visual. Not surprisingly, tweets with images are 94% more likely to get retweeted. Find out what your target audience wants to look at (hint: gifs are a hit with millennials, and cute animal pictures are a hit with…well, just about everyone), and go from there.
  • Tweet frequently. Since the lifespan of a tweet is so short, your best chance of being seen is to tweet frequently. It may seem repetitive to tweet 3-10 times a day, but the chances that your followers are going to see all 10 tweets are pretty slim. Tweeting with consistent frequency increases your chances of visibility. Just make sure that you’re writing quality tweets that people will want to read.
  • Use a call to action. Get people to do more than just “favorite” your tweet or even retweet it. The goal for your tweets (I can only assume) is to create more business for your company. If this is the case, you must give people a reason to follow the link, to visit your website, to watch the video, to sign up for the webinar, to do whatever you want them to do. Use clear verbs that prompt action. “Click the link to…” is a popular line because it works.
  • Avoid “Click-bait” headlines. As tempting as it may be to tweet something that ends in “I couldn’t believe what happened next” or “People are outraged at this…”, don’t do it. Click-bait has become less and less enticing to the masses, and people will see your brand differently (hint: not in a good way) if you employ those types of tactics. Be genuine, upfront, and clear.
  • Use personality. Take Wendys, or Taco Bell for example. They know how to write sidesplitting and relevant tweets that showcase their brand’s voice. Don’t be afraid of a little sass, if your target market can handle it. Humor, when appropriate, is almost always appreciated, and Twitter is the perfect place to exercise it. Just don’t get too personal!

You won’t have to follow every single rule on the list for every single tweet you write, but it’s a great place to start and a solid guideline to keep in mind. For example, if you’re live tweeting during a football game – which is a great idea if that fits your target market – you won’t necessarily need to include a link, but you’ll want to use a trending hashtag or two and maybe a relevant gif.

If you’re lacking inspiration, here are two examples of some darn-near perfect tweets.

 

How to Tweet for Business

How to Tweet for Business

 

What do you think? What are some of your favorite businesses on Twitter?

A MAN'S GUIDE ON HOW TO-5

Does your website need a face lift? Sometimes it’s hard to know when to tweak little things on your website here and there, and when to pull the trigger on rebuilding it from scratch. How do you know which to choose? Here are some questions to ask yourself before you take the plunge.

Sometimes whether you need a new website or not is a no-brainer. Sometimes, it’s not so easy to figure out. Here are two of the top reasons you should press pause and hold off on your website redesign:

Reasons not to get a re-design:

  • You’re bored. We get it. We really do! Boredom with your current website (or websiteboredomitis) is a very real thing that afflicts lots of businesses. However, if your website is performing well, bringing in a steady flow of leads, reflects your brand accurately, functions, and is up to date, boredom isn’t a good reason to change it. It may change the impact of your SEO (in a bad way), the effectiveness of your lead-generation, and it can come with a pretty hefty price tag. If your website works efficiently and is up-to-date, don’t change your website. Your resources are better spent elsewhere.
  • You changed your mind. Sometimes you’re presented with several options that result in you second-guessing your initial choice. Should you have gone with the light teal or the sea foam green for your sub headers? Answer: whatever you already picked. Once again, if it’s not broken, don’t fix it. You’ll risk wasting precious money, time, and resources. Invest your energy somewhere that’ll help your bottom line.

It boils down to this: does your site work well for all devices? Is it up to date/relevant? Great! Sit back and watch it do its job and make you money.

Now that you know what makes a bad reason to get a website redesign, here are some signs you should take that next step towards a re-design.

Reasons to get a complete re-design:

  • Is your website older than 3 years? If you answered “yes” to this question, chances are pretty good that your website isn’t in optimal condition. Technology and trends change at the speed of sound, and 3 years is the equivalent of 10 years in internet time. It’s important for your website to be fully relevant and modern in order for you to keep up with competitors. New functions and micro experiences are being added to websites every day, and if your website looks like it’s from the dark ages, people will notice.
  • Does your website function well on mobile devices? It’s incredibly important for your website to have a user-friendly interface for smartphones and tablets. After all, 4 out of 5 people use their smartphones to make online purchases! Don’t believe me? Check this out.
  • Does your website agree with your brand identity and target market? If your branding has changed at all since your website was last updated, it might be time for a redesign. Your brand should be consistent across every channel (every color and font, etc.), and if there’s anything outdated about the branding on your current site, you should update it ASAP. The look and feel of your brand should be built around your target market, and that should be reflected on your website. If you’re a geriatrics clinic and your website doesn’t cater to baby boomers and the silent generation, you’ve missed the mark. Your website must be attractive to your target market, whoever they are.
  • Can your website compete with your business competition? Are you an online clothing company with a long checkout process? Have your competitors found a better way to streamline checkouts? It’s time to get back to the grind, and make sure your website keeps up with current expectations in your field.
  • Is your website bringing in consistent business? If it is, great! You’ve done something right, and your website is working for you. But if your stats are low, your leads aren’t generating, and business has quieted considerably, it might be time to look into exactly why that happened. Often, it’s because your website isn’t doing it’s job. A website needs to do a few things for it to be considered profitable, rather than a deterrent against your business.

You’ve worked hard to build your business, and you’ve invested countless hours and dollars into it. In order for all of your hard work not to go to waste, you need a functional, visually appealing website that highlights what you do. In order to keep your business alive (much less build and advance it), an optimized website is a must. If your website fails, you will too. Spend some time today auditing your website, finding out what works and what doesn’t. If there’s a problem, you know who to call. Happy auditing!

How To-6

One of the best parts about content marketing is that a little goes a long way – if you play your cards right. If you’ve created a few solid pieces of evergreen content already, you can continue to use that same content in brand new ways. Repurposing existing content will save your team valuable time and money, while generating even more ways for strangers to discover your brand.

Work Smart, Not Hard.

You’ve already done the hardest part: creating the content. Instead of spending all of your time creating more content, why not just repurpose what you already have? As marketing guru Neil Patel says – write less, promote more.

Stop Creating.

I know, I know. It seems a tad asinine for a creative agency to tell you to stop creating. The idea isn’t to stop altogether, though: it’s to stop wasting time cranking out endless content that is rarely seen. Of course, you can only stop creating once you’ve already got some pieces of solid content in your arsenal.  You don’t have to have a ton, but you do have to have some.

Start Repurposing.

Let’s say you wrote an amazing eBook, and it’s only been downloaded one or two times. Don’t worry! That’s where the beauty of repurposing comes in. Even if that eBook has been downloaded hundreds of times, (wow, congrats!) you can still benefit from repurposing that content in another way.

But how do you do it?

First, take inventory of what you have. Take a look at all of the content you’ve already created, and mark down which pieces are still relevant. Remember, this content can come from anywhere: informational emails, webinars, conference material, blog posts, etc. Check out the following list for some ideas on how you can give this stuff a quick face lift (or heart transplant):

  • Combine Forces: Do you have several blog posts on one topic? Turn them into an eBook! Refresh some of your verbiage, add an intro, transitions, and an ending, and slam those suckers together into one awesome eBook all about that particular subject. Don’t forget to put your logo on it!
  • Take One Piece: Got a long email about the importance of having the right sunscreen? Turn it into a checklist on ways to protect yourself from the sun. If you have an eBook about how to buy the right new car, take one portion of it to turn into a shorter blog post. There are endless ways to take one snippet or chunk out of a larger piece and give it it’s own life.
  • Make it Visual: Whether you’re pulling the content from something textual (like a blog post) or something audible (like a webinar), you can easily arrange the information into something tangible and visually appealing. Infographics are an easy way to repurpose content, and people love them.
  • Make it Audible: Turn that eBook into a podcast! You can read it in your podcast, adding your new comments and suggestions, or turn it into a quick video.
  • From X to Y: Turn podcasts into infographics, infographics into videos, videos into blog posts, blog posts into checklists, checklists into eBooks, eBooks into email automations, email automations into webinars. Whatever it is, you double your chances of it being seen when you give it life in another form.

Start Promoting.

The only way you can ensure that your hard work, sweat, and tears haven’t gone to waste? Promote, promote, promote.

Once you’ve pieced together your brand-new-old-repurposed content, you should develop a promotion plan for it across your social media channels. Tweet it, tag it, post it – on the blog, on the website, on the social pages. The top two places to share your content will likely be Facebook and Twitter, but depending on your audience and the type of content you’ve created, Instagram, Pinterest, Tumblr, Snapchat, YouTube, and LinkedIn are also great options. A good rule of thumb: find out where your specific audience is, and be there – wherever that may be.

Keep in mind – you should continue promoting this same content as long as the material inside it is still relevant.

Sometimes, that means you’re retweeting a tweet that got explosive engagement 6 months ago. The shelf life of any given tweet is only 18 minutes, so you can safely retweet your own past tweets – and because of Twitter’s algorithms, odds are pretty good that the same people won’t see it. However, while re-posting previously successful material can be a good idea, you shouldn’t rely on this as your main method of promotion.

Your promotion plan should be extensive and detailed. Scheduling social posts can be a lifesaver – and it will help you to keep track of how often you’re posting about the same piece of content. Of course, don’t forget to sprinkle in plenty of other posts in between these specific promotion posts – no one likes a broken record, even if you are rephrasing.

Remember – it’s social media, so brevity is the name of the game. People are scrolling and you only have about 0.000034 seconds to catch their attention, so get to the point, draw them in, and convince them to click.

You Got This.

Feeling overwhelmed? Take it one piece at a time. The idea behind repurposing content is to save money, time, energy, and resources. If you know how to take advantage of it, you’ll be glad you did.

9 Baby (1)

Building a trusted and relevant online presence is non-negotiable for companies who want to go the distance. However, the digital world can be a bit intimidating.  If you’re a little lost and/or overwhelmed by the enormity of it all or the constant changes, don’t worry! This Fort Worth marketing agency has a few tips to get you headed in the right direction.

8 Baby Steps To A Profitable Online Presence

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Baby Step 1: Make sure your website is both user friendly and mobile friendly. Ensuring that your website is easy to navigate for mobile users grows increasingly more essential, because currently 75% of users access the internet through their phone! It’s important for your website to be straight forward and not overwhelming, and to have a clear path of direction. On average, most people spend fewer than 15 seconds on a website before deciding whether they will stay or go elsewhere. Make sure you don’t turn people off by having too many conflicting ideas, and using confusing or unclear jargon.

On the flip side, it’s  also important that your website be fully informative, and include all pertinent information in a visually appealing way. While you don’t want so much content on your website that’s it’s overwhelming – causing people to leave out of sheer frustration – it’s equally negative to have too little content. Everything a customer needs to know about your company should be on your website.

 

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Baby Step 2: Get ready to present yourself! That will include getting quality photographs taken of you, your team, your products/services, your office, etc. People will want to see the face behind your brand, so be sure you have good photos to share of the team and some good “behind-the-scenes” shots, as well. This shows personality, and people will want to see that on your website and social media. In addition, prepare your story! People pick brands because of the way those brands make them feel, not because they sell the best products. Write down your story, and tell your fans what sets you apart and makes you different from the competition.

 

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Baby Step 3: Register your business with Google Maps and Yelp. If someone searches for your business name, it’s important that Google and Yelp recognize your business’s location. This is particularly important if you have a storefront or physical location that people will need directions to find. For help on this, here’s an easy tutorial to set up your business with Google, and this one will help you to register with Yelp.

 

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Baby Step 4: While we’re on the topic of Google and Yelp, another thing to consider is reviews. If your business doesn’t bring up any reviews on Google, Yelp, or social media, strangers to your brand won’t know whether they can trust you. This is particularly true of the millennial generation, as they tend to rely on online reviews and ratings more than other generations. If you have no reviews yet, try asking a few clients who you’ve worked with previously to leave you a review. Positive reviews build trust online and establish your business as authentic and worthwhile.

 

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Baby Step 5: Find out what social media platforms your market is on, and be there. In this digital age, social media is one of the best ways to build relationships with your existing customers and attract future customers. Do some research to discover which of the (endless) social media spaces your target is most likely to be on. There’s no point in wasting time in places that won’t make you any money or further your brand in the long run, so focus your time on the platforms where your customers are active. Yes, millions of people are on Twitter – but if your specific market isn’t, maintaining a Twitter profile will be a waste of your time and resources. Develop solid, vibrant and personable profiles. Interact with your fan base, use hashtags to gain more visibility, join groups, and reference studies that show when the best times in the day are to post on which networks. Then, develop a social posting schedule that you can stick to. Consistency is key!

 

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Baby Step 6: Consider adding blog to your website – it’s a great way to increase customer engagement and rank higher in search engines. Blogs are also an excellent way to continually drive new traffic to your website. Be sure you use relevant keywords (just don’t overuse them!) in your posts, and share your blog updates on your social media accounts. Include social sharing buttons for other people to share your content, too.

 

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Baby Step 7: Build an email list and begin sending emails. Establish a following – these are your people! Nurture those relationships and keep your fans close by gently reminding them you exist with a properly timed email. Use your email list to send coupons, industry advice, blog snippets, updates, and more. Remember the golden rule of writing emails, before you hit “send”: would you want to read it?

 

Screen Shot 2017-04-12 at 1.55.31 PM.pngBaby Step 8: Decide which places you’d like to invest – Facebook ads, Google Adwords, Twitter ads, etc., and determine your advertisement goals (more page likes, more engagement, offer clicks, etc.). Then, develop multiple advertisements. After they go live you should analyze, analyze, and analyze some more. Conduct A/B testing to find out what works best, what doesn’t work, and keep fine tuning your ads accordingly. The more specifically you segment the audience and the more tailored your ads are to that audience, the more effective they will be. (For the full infographic above, click here)

Going from hardly-online to fully-booming-online is a process, and it doesn’t happen overnight. Every brand is different, and you may need to adjust things here and there, accordingly. If you have any thoughts or questions, we know a little something about everything from web development to graphic design, and we’re happy to help.

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