How To Automate Keyword Research With APIs & Python Scripts


Introduction:

It’s time for some more SEO tips!

The latest ‘Words from the Wise SEO’ blog post is an interesting read from Paul DeMott – about how you can cut your keyword research down to just ten minutes! Impressive.

Find out how you can start automating your keyword research to save a bunch of time that you can spend wisely elsewhere.

Leave us a comment if you have any points to add!

 

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How To Automate Keyword Research With APIs & Python Scripts

Introduction

My name is Paul DeMott and I’m the CTO of Helium SEO, a fast growing Cincinnati SEO company. I’ve been in the SEO game for over a decade and over the last few years I’ve been specifically focused on building software and AI for SEO. Today I will share with you one of the key processes we’ve automated.

Disclaimer: Our agency has access to many tools that are not available to everyone. There are many free substitutes for these tools and I hope to update the article with these as I work on replicating this system with free tools.

Automating keyword research is a tall order, but if you are able to do it, it can save hours of work. We took our process from 2 hours down to 10 minutes by strategically programming parts of the process. What makes it tricky, like so many parts of SEO, is that there is a large subjective component. Computers rely on instructions and rules to make decisions, and a keyword that can look great to a computer can look bad to a human.

Our team spent a lot of time brainstorming as well as making revisions to this process. I will do my best to walk you through the whole process.

Our goal was to build software that could find keywords that had the following characteristics.

  1. High buyer intent (Not only will it drive traffic but this traffic can produce leads. Also notice keyword volume is not the priority)
  2. Trending upwards (we expect this query to get more searches over time)
  3. Low difficulty (The easier it is for us to rank and get clients leads the better)
  4. Fits well into our clients strategy and the products they serve

 

Do not use a process like this if your client already knows their keywords.

 

Sometimes keyword research is easy and there are a few keywords that can be knock out without revving up our software. For example, sometimes our clients have run Adwords for years and have statistical significance on which keywords specifically drive leads. If your client has this it should be a no brainer which keywords to pick, but often this data is not available and that’s when you need to dive a bit deeper.

Quantifying the Keyword Goal

The true challenge of this project, as mentioned above, is successfully quantifying what a good keyword looks like.

Through trial and error we’ve found there is no single tool that works best for keyword research.

Each tool has its own strengths, but to be able to utilize their strengths requires understanding what they attempt to do.

In the following sections I’ll elaborate on which metrics we ended up selecting and why. I’m a strong believer that understanding the why is necessary to implementing any system.

Ahrefs Keyword Difficulty

Ahrefs KD claims to have the highest correlation to actual search results. (Keep in mind that Long Tail Pros algorithm has significantly improved since this post was created.)

Ahrefs KD metric strongly correlates to real results because backlinks still carry a huge weight as a ranking factor. KD works by averaging the number of referring domains to a page inside the top 10.

This is helpful, but also limiting. On one end, assuming links of equal quality, this score can give you a good estimate of the number of incoming links required to get to page 1. However, in many cases it’s not accurate to assume that all incoming links are of equal quality.

Despite this keyword having a low difficulty rating, it might be easy to get onto page 1, but another story to get into the top 3 results.

In this example, it might be easy to get on page 1 but very hard to get spot 1. Additionally, some of the most competitive keyword searches get assigned a low difficulty score because there are few incoming referring domains; however the sites ranking on page 1 are massive authority websites that pass around a lot of power with strong internal linking schemes.

Long Tail Pro KC

Long Tail Pro KC is a complementary tool to Ahref’s KD and DR.

At a high level look, Long Tail Pro KC factors in domain authority, incoming links, keywords position in titles and their respective majestic trust flows, and then weights each of these values to arrive at a KC score. Our agency uses the chart below to interpret the KC value and we’ve found this chart to be very accurate from the 1000s of keywords we have ranked.

Unlike Ahref’s KD, which doesn’t give us specifics about the quality of links, Long Tail Pro’s KC does.

Additionally, one of my favorite features of Long Tail Pro is that it can provide insights into internal linking and site age.

By clicking on the word you can pull up a more complete view of the SERPs for any given keyword.

SEOs often overlook internal links even though they can carry as much power as referring domains.

PRO-Tip: Pay attention to the site ages in the top 10. One or two young sites in the top 10 can be a good indication that you can rank for the keyword quickly.

Ahrefs DR

Domain Rating serves one purpose in our keyword process. Sometimes you’ll encounter keywords that look great but in actuality would be near impossible to rank for. With DR we can catch these false positives.

For example the following scenario the domain has a KD of 0, but when you look at the DRs the keyword is much more challenging.

Why does this happen? A very authority site passes incredible amounts of link equity to every site it links to, including internal pages. This article is worth reading to better understand it (link here).

Why DR instead of DA? Ahrefs simply has a much better crawler than MOZ. It’s second in size next to Google.

Checking the top 3 Spots

Unfortunately, KD and KC just tell us the difficulty of getting onto page 1. If we want to know how hard it is to rank in the top 3 spots we need to look at the DR of these sites as well as their referring links.

We have not yet automated this process, but will in the future.

Automating the Process

Now that we have the metrics defined that we are looking for. Let me walk you through the automation process.

 

Tools required:

  • SEMRUSH
  • KEYWORDTOOL.IO
  • Selenium
  • Pikotocharts

 

Phases

  • Keyword Expansion
  • Culling
  • Graphically representing
  • Manual Review Stage

 

Keyword Expansion

Keyword expansion is one of the most important pieces of this process. The good news is, even if you are not a developer you can still use this process, and while it may not take 10 minutes and be done automatically for you, it is still a systematic way to find good keywords.

During the expansion phase the most common issue we ran into was not casting a wide enough net to catch enough good keywords. We tried many different tools but here is our finalized process.

To programmatically do these processes we use a browser automation tool called Selenium. It functions just like a human would on each page. (If there is interest on how to use this tool I’d happily write another article.) Lastly, if you have API access to any of these tools it speeds up this process.

  1. Collect seed keywords from customer. Make sure you have a procedure for learning which keywords your customer wants.
  2. Type keywords into Google and grab top 5 results. We use a python Google API to automatically grab these 5 pages.  
  3. Pull list of keywords between 1-20 from all 5 competitors in Semrush.
  4. Place seed keywords in keywordtool.io. This tool is great because unlike other tools it grabs a high diversity of unique related keywords. They even have a free version.


  5. Combine the list generated from Keyword.io and the 5 Semrush competitors. Just save the search volume and keyword name.

Curating the List

Now that we have a list of close to 1000 keywords we begin trying to find the needle in the haystack. (Note: We have written an internal script to apply the following changes. Python has a few nice libraries for dealing with csv data.)

  1. Cut all keywords with less than 10 searches per month.
  2. Copy list into LongTrail Pro. Cut all keywords that have a KC>40, save CPC and whether or not site links appear for the search query
  3. Cut all keywords that have a KD > 20
  4. Sort KD by Descending Order – The idea here is that we are looking for the least competitive keywords that still meet our qualifications. We want to prioritize keywords by lower difficulty ratings.

Check Google Trend Data

We built a tool that can take our final list of keywords and see whether they are trending upwards in popularity and then plot all of our relevant data. (I’ll be updating this content with a download link soon.)

Plot

Lastly, we take all of the keywords and plot them on a 2-dimensional graph.

These plots are much more aesthetically pleasing to look at than excel tables and they make it easier for a human to identify which keyword fit a list of criteria.

While it may be easy to sort an excel sheet by a single column, such as search volume, it’s more challenging to compare a ton of fields such as high search volume, low difficulty and is trending upwards in popularity. These visualizations simplify the process.

Visualize the Information

Red = SERPS had Adwords Ads

Blue = SERPS did not have Adwords Ads

Circle Size = The keyword Volume

In this chart we express buyer intent by identifying whether or not the keyword had site AdWords links on the SERP. It’s not a perfect method but it at least helps pick out good keywords. The x-axis is keyword difficulty and the y-axis shows the sloping trend of the keyword (whether it has become more or less popular).

Lastly, if we hover over a keyword we can see specifics. I also have the Semrush difficulty metric displayed, however I don’t find it very useful.

The ideal keywords have the following traits:

  1. Large circle
  2. Red Color
  3. Low difficulty
  4. High CPC
  5. Positive Slope (upward trending)

Final Step

The final results of this process are 10-100 good potential keywords. Once we have them we throw them back into Long Tail Pro and Ahrefs to do one final check. This is the point where we double check for false positives.

Additionally, if the DR is above 45 (our metric to differentiate an authority site from a normal site) for every domain in the top 10 and our client doesn’t have a DR of 45 we may put these keywords on the back-burner.

They may still be possible to rank but, they would likely take longer for us to generate leads for.

I hope this process is helpful and would love to hear your guys’ feedback!

Thanks for taking the time to read the SEOButler blog today – how has this post helped you?

Check back next week for more!

 

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How Amazon’s Algorithm Is Google’s, Pre-2010

Hey pals – long time no speak!

We’re back with a brand new weekly blog series, ‘Words From The Wise SEO’: where the seasoned pros of the industry will be sharing tried-and-tested hot tips, tricks and takes on how to improve your rankings.

Our premier post is by Amazon SEO Consultant, Tom Buckland, who has some ideas about how Amazon’s algorithms are quite similar to Google’s, circa-2010. Do you agree? Read on to find out…

 

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How Amazon’s Algorithm Is Google’s, Pre-2010

Background

Before the Panda and Penguin updates of 2011/2012, Google used to be a wonderful place. It was easy to rank using black and white hat SEO techniques. Content was easy. Any links would do. Life was great.

Then in 2011, a major update called the Google Panda update hit and changed the game forever. 12% of search results were affected! That’s the biggest impact an update has ever had.

In April 2012, Google released an algorithm update called Penguin. This was felt heavily by most of the SEO community at the time. Without getting into too much detail (as many of you will probably already be familiar with this) the Penguin update considered sites that were manipulating the SERPs, and they did this specifically by targeting OVER-optimisation. 3.1% of English queries were said to be affected and thousands of SEOs worldwide panicked at the same time.

So, What’s This Google Algorithm History Lesson Got to Do with Amazon?

Amazon is the largest B2C ecommerce store in the world. They also have a very advanced search algorithm that attempts to qualify products and searches and present the most relevant product at the top of the results to their users – of course, very similar to what Google’s primary goal is.

The issue with Amazon is they have other things to worry about. Operations, arrivals, packing, delivering, back-end maintenance, customer service (which has gone horrific in the last 12 months), ads, AWS, and hundreds of other individual elements.

All this means is search is not their priority. The investment going into improving their search algorithm is limited, and as a result they are quite far behind other search giants, such as Google (and even Bing).

Amazon and Google are two massive businesses with the sole goal to make money (by any means necessary in some cases). But, what they want from people is very different and how they do this is very different.

-Google wants users to use their search engine and click on Ads. Every decision they make is towards this one goal.

-Amazon (on the other hand) wants users to buy products from Amazon (as their core B2C goal). But they also want suppliers to sign up and start selling on their platform.

When doing optimisation or marketing for Amazon, keep one key question in mind (it’s what everything is related to) – “By taking this action, will I make AMAZON more money?” If the answer is YES, then chances are you will improve your organic rankings by taking that specific action.

What Do I Mean By “Amazon Is Google Pre-Updates”?

Amazon IS Google in 2010. Amazon sellers need to beware of this.

Whether it takes Amazon a year or a decade to get to a more evolved algorithm and improve their search results to the level of Google is yet to be seen. But one thing you don’t want to happen is to build a substantial business that is reliant on Amazon only to have a massive algorithm change based on a black and white animal ruin your hard work.

Personally, I believe Amazon will crack down on 3 key areas in the next few years. These elements will “make them more money” and hence they are starting to invest resources more heavily into these mediums, especially two of these. Stay aware and ahead of them to avoid the Google fate many suffered around 2011-2012.

3 Areas They Will Initially Target

With Google’s evolution in the past 5+ years, we can see the future of search engines and how they ideally should progress. This gives a huge advantage as we know what Amazon is looking towards in for the future. Again, whether this vision takes them a year or a decade to implement shouldn’t matter too much.

There are three obvious core areas where Amazon will crack down on first. Some areas they’ve already started.

Once these are complete, they will likely look to targeting specific smaller elements. But as the Amazon search algorithm is NOT Amazon’s “one thing” to quote Gary Keller, they will unlikely ever get to a manual penalty team (there is simply no need yet.)

  1. Reviews

Amazon is cracking down on fake reviews hard (they just aren’t very good at it yet.)

This is a huge issue, as reviews are the social-proof that gives buyers the confidence to make an educated decision about a specific product. If every specific product review is fake, then buyers can no longer make an informed decision, ultimately driving shoppers to another website.

There does need to be a middle ground here, though, and if there isn’t, then there will be a vicious cycle:

If you have no reviews 1. No one will buy your product 2. You cannot get reviews without people purchasing your products…

How Amazon Will Crack Down on Reviews

Amazon will be able to crack down on this by using patterns similar to how Google discovers users of PBNs who haven’t hidden their network well enough.

For example, having reviewers purchase a product at a discount is the first one they’ve considered. Any discounts over 20% are now flagged by Amazon’s internal system (more on this in the spiking best seller rank section) and if multiple reviews are posted without labelling that this was an incentive review, the product is suspended, or reviews are pulled at best.

Eventually, Amazon wants to completely eradicate fake or incentivised reviews. This is not possible with the technology they are currently integrating but as AI becomes more advanced and mainstream, I do not see this being a problem for them in the future.

What Sellers Can Do

Be extremely careful when starting out or scaling your reviews for specific ASINs. Remember the golden ratio – for example, if you get 100 sales and 50 reviews, that’s appears extremely unnatural to Amazon (it’s kind of like getting 100 visitors and 50 links… Google knows it’s BS and Amazon will too.)

Instead, look to get about one review per 10 full-priced sales at the start. Anything that is a full-priced sale, Amazon will usually over-look something dodgy. But a discounted review with a very high review ratio is going to send up all the red flags.

So, for Amazon sellers, the use of manual review processes is very important, but only with the right ratios. The family and friends reviewing your products is still officially against Amazon’s ToS, but as I’ve mentioned previously, it’s very difficult to currently track fake reviews.

2. Spiking Best Seller Rank

This is the specific service we offer to clients. It’s popular because its hard to do. BUT, there are easier ways that most sellers have been using for the past three years that many people are probably familiar with. But these methods are starting to disrupt Amazon and become less and less effective.

For anyone not familiar with best seller rank, it’s the Google PageRank of Amazon. It’s based on how many sales a product makes in a given time period (no one knows the exact time period, but it doesn’t matter all that much. I’ll use 24 hours for ease of explanation).

So, if a product makes 100 sales everyday and another product makes 50 sales a day, the product that makes 100 sales will OUTRANK the product that has only 50 per day. Even if the on-page optimisation of the other product is very poor (it has to be a certain quality but it’s a very low benchmark.)

This is one of the reasons why you sometimes see strange results when you search in the “all departments” section of Amazon with a broad keyword. Amazon tries to quantify the search, they just aren’t all that good at it (yet).

SALES ARE AMAZON’S “OFF PAGE!”

Similar to Google, it doesn’t matter how good your on-page optimisation is, if you don’t get any links, then you aren’t going to rank for anything competitive.

Amazon takes this to an even higher level. If you don’t make sales, you won’t get organic rankings.

But how are you meant to make sales without ranking for any keywords?

And this is the reason why 90% of Amazon sellers fail.

The answer is to use external marketing sources, or 3rd parties, that manually spike best seller rank using techniques that are against Amazon’s ToS.

How Amazon Will Crack Down?

The title of this post is how Amazon is Google of the past. With reference to sales equalling links, this could not be clearer.

If we took two websites that have perfect on-page optimisation (in 2010) and built 10 average links to one of them and let the other one sit with zero links, what would happen?

As it’s 2010 and any “good enough” link gives us some value, we end up ranking higher the more links we build. As a result, we get more organic traffic and more revenue. Happy days.

On Amazon, the exact same happens but replace the word links with sales.

If we have two product listings selling the same product, at the same price, with the same on-page optimisation, and we then generate 10 sales a day for one product and zero sales a day for the other product, what happens?

Well, currently Amazon will rank that product with 10 sales a day HIGHER for its related keywords. Once the product ranks organically it starts to generate organic sales and hence increases total revenue.

The issue is with HOW these initial sales come in.

If you build them in natural ways generating full priced sales, Amazon loves you, you rank higher, happy days.

The problem (for Amazon, not the sellers yet) is that generating these sales is usually done in a non-Amazon-friendly way. For example, things like discounted products (90-100% discounts) asking everyone you’ve ever met to purchase it, and even paying random people to purchase your products.

Amazon wants to get as far away from this as possible. If they do not solve this issue, then low quality products will start ranking highly for keywords and customers start to become unhappy with what they purchase.

Long term, this would lead to less customers shopping on Amazon.

How Amazon decides to solve this problem is far beyond my thought capacity, but it is something they are starting to look into judging by the lack of effectiveness of some of these 3rd party best seller rank companies in the past few months.

What Sellers Can Do

Put simply, you need to invest into external marketing sources to spike best seller rank. These work even better and can be even cheaper in the long run than paying a 3rd party to spike best seller rank unnaturally.

3. On-page keyword stuffing

Again, when it comes to on-page optimisation of Amazon, it is very similar to Google (pre-Panda). Meaning you can do as much keyword stuffing, long tail keywords, everything just get those keywords IN!

But.

If we think about the first major update that Google implemented (which was Panda) this targeted sites that had very poor or thin content. This is what the majority of Amazon product listings look like. So, instead of keyword stuffing, we must get a mix of optimisation for Amazon and users.

The key I recommend here is learning keyword focused copywriting.

At the end of the day, we optimise for search engines, but we need to convert visitors once they visit our website or product listing.

Inside Amazon there are 4 key elements to implementing keywords. Use the similar over-optimisation rules as you would apply to Google or you can check out our 5,000 word guide to perfect on-page listing optimisation on Amazon.

How Amazon Will Solve This

This is an easier one than the previous two, as we can almost use a simple keyword density tool, mixed with a relevance score, to give a percentage. This can then raise a flag to Amazon’s internal processing system to monitor whether there are high refunds and returns for this item. If everything points to a low-quality listing, they can have a human (if there are any left in Amazon) to review these quickly and give a suppression if so.

Saying all this, I can’t see Amazon investing the resources into achieving that positive result. But it would improve the overall user experience of the site, so one can hope.

What Sellers Can Do

Sellers should be using correct on-page optimisation as the benefits drastically outweigh any time investment. For example, spending two hours upfront on a product doing keyword research, competition analysis, listing optimisation, and copywriting can led to a huge ROI throughout the life of your product and business. Conversions and rankings will help you in the long run.

Conclusion

Remember, Amazon is NOT Google.

They started as an Ecommerce store, so their goals are different. As a result, you can currently “get away” with more: free giveaways to spike best seller rank, keyword stuffing listings, and just an overall spam approach to promotions.

The solution is to use REAL external marketing sources, such as influencer marketing, FB ads, content marketing, and others, to manually spike best seller rank and increase organic rankings. If done correctly, you won’t have to offer discounts or free products and you will build a better quality following in the process,you won’t have to offer discounts or free products and you will build a better quality following in the process. Organic rankings themselves and tracking them effectively is one of the key areas you can invest your Amazon marketing efforts, the ROI is incredible and the added benefits of this are massive too. You can see the exact process we use from start to finish that has worked for dozens of clients here.

Thanks for reading – we hope you enjoyed this post! Leave us a comment below with any thoughts!

 

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The Top 25 Social Media Marketing Tools

Introduction:

We’ve got a treat for you this week!

It’s Wednesday – which means our second ‘Words from the Wise SEO’ blog post is up, part of our new series of contributions from SEO geniuses across the globe.

This week it’s all about the very best FREE social media marketing tools. You might just discover a new platform that saves you tons of time and hard-earned cash!

Find out which tools are best recommended by social media pro, ContentStudio’s Umair Mansha. Is your favourite not listed? Leave us a comment below if you have any further suggestions!

 

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The Top 25 Social Media Marketing Tools

As we advance new forms of technology, we are able to improve connectivity, form strong networks, promote our businesses, and utilise many other brand-enhancing benefits. It’s at this point that we should think about moving forward even further and establish platforms where interconnectivity is continually improved.

Social media sites are undoubtedly amazing platforms where we can connect to millions of like-minded people and promote our networks. As a wise man once said:

“Your network is your net worth.”

In this guide, we are going to discuss the best free social media marketing tools that are highly praised among the social media community and online influencers.

The use of these tools can put you ahead of the game in terms of content management and marketing. We’ll discuss the benefits of each LinkedIn social marketing tool throughout the post so that you’ll be able to find the best platform for your requirements. Let’s begin!

Contentstudio.io

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Contentstudio takes care of all your content management at once. You will get to know trending content even before it is trending to boost your own promotions and increase audience engagement. This is content from the entire web, not just social media. You’ll get the most relevant content to shoot.

In social media management, this tool will help you to discover the top performing content relevant to the industry, and will let you compose a custom post to attract more users to your social media. Not only that, it will also help you to create SEO-friendly posts for the top attractions, as well as enable you to schedule posts for peak times in order to target the active audience.

So, whether you’re a marketing agency, a business, or an enterprise – this tool is for you. You can opt for a free trial before becoming a paying member to see if it’s the solution for you.

Buffer

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Buffer is known to be the best tool to make things easier for you in terms of social media management. It lets you schedule the posts and simplifies your routine to generate more audience engagement. As we all know, social media is the best way to drive traffic: therefore it is important to keep in touch with all your social networks at once, saving you time in the long run.

There are multiple features to choose from depending on your own social media platforms, so it can be designed to suit your needs. It will help you grow your relationship with your audience on social media, improving customer satisfaction.

Buffer has a 7-day trial version, after which monthly payments begin, ranging from $10 to $400.

Hootsuite

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In terms of social media management, Hootsuite is a great contender. This programme lets you schedule your posts from one place, saving you a lot of time. It provides you with ready-made content and images, analytics on your social media progress, and offers brand security on all of your social platforms. On top of this, if you’re thinking about team management, they offer this as a core feature; as well as encouraging you to participate in contests to keep your accounts up to date. 

You can sign up for the free version – but be aware that it has limited tools. To make the most of this programme, I would recommend signing up for a paid plan that allows you to have full use of the features.

Followed

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Whether you’re a small business owner or a highly experienced marketing professional, Followed will halve the time it takes you to update your business’s social media accounts. I would especially recommend this programme to beginners who may be more concerned about their social marketing and management performance.

If you want to enhance your daily audience interaction, Followed predicts the best time of day that people are most active online, and allows you to post unique content to multiple platforms at once.

It offers all the best features that will turn the bumpy road of social media into a marketing highway!

Brand24

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Brand24 is a social media monitoring system for all types of businesses. What people say about your brand or business online can have many detrimental effects, so it is important to monitor these conversations.

It is both good for you and your business if you are aware of the issues people are facing when using your service. By using Brand24 you will be able to resolve the problem sooner and protect your brand from further complications and user backlash. This programme will help you keep an eye on discussions throughout your social media platforms so that you can engage directly with the people who bring up issues. Monitoring customer feedback will improve customer satisfaction, ensuring that they continue to use your service.

Try a free 14-day trial before upgrading to the premium plans. 

Sprout Social

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If you want to strengthen your social media strategy, Sprout Social might just be the thing for you. It works for everyone: small business owners, marketing agencies, and enterprises. 

As a business owner, you need to be marketing your brand on social media in order to increase audience engagement and generate more sales. If you are a marketing agency, a priority should be team management. And if you are an enterprise, communication and customer interaction is your biggest concern.

Sprout Social helps with everything. It will assist you with content creation and management; which will improve your social media professionalism and enhance the business-consumer relationship. By using Sprout Social, you’ll be able to make better decisions for your business, and save yourself a lot of time in the process.

You can try their free trial before signing up for their premium version.

Okto Post

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If you want to boost your B2B marketing, Okto Post is a great social management tool you could use. It manages multiple social platforms and allows you to promote your content to establish better leads for your business. By tracking every single lead that you generate, it provides you with perfect analytics: so you can keep tabs of what posts, on which social profile, on which social network, is performing the best.

It makes social publishing much easier, from scheduling to automatic posting at specific times on multiple networks. It lets you discover trendy content and notifies you when people are talking about your content online. With Okto Post, monitoring your social media engagement is simplified and consumer satisfaction can be easily maintained.

Go to their website and request a demo for free.

Zoho Social

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Zoho Social is a software for businesses that allows you to manage everything from a single platform. From management to marketing and analytics, Zoho Social does its job well. You can even manage all of your social media accounts on your mobile phone using their app. It allows the scheduling of multiple posts at peak times of the day to ensure that your content is being seen online by as many people as possible.

You can also track keywords and stay in touch with your team using this programme, guaranteeing a smooth and flawlessly-run business.  Zoho Social provides all the facilities and features on a single dashboard from which you can manage your market on social media. For a business purpose, their plans are different and inexpensive, and they have categorised Agency Plans and Business Plans individually, making navigation around the site very easy.

You can sign up to Zoho Social for free.

Agora Pulse

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Even if you’re a beginner and aren’t sure how to manage your social media strategy yet, Agora Pulse is a very easy social marketing and management model. This programme helps you manage your social media activity from one place, which is great if you have multiple accounts on different social platforms.

From publishing to team collaboration, Agora Pulse offers many features that will ensure the effective management of your business’s social media accounts. From small businesses to large enterprises and agencies, Agora Pulse provides a simple, easy, and affordable service.

They offer a great discount if you sign up to their annual plan.

Falcon.io

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Falcon is a well-known social media marketing platform suitable to any type of business, allowing you to create both paid and organic posts for all your social networks entirely from one place. You can manage all channels and monitor audience engagement from a single dashboard, ensuring that you are constantly updated with user response and customer satisfaction.

This is great for staying in-the-know with your audience, so you can maintain your business-consumer relationships. Besides being a strategy maker, it will also help you with your team management.

Curata

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Curata is a brilliant tool for content marketing and content curation. As a curator, it will help you to discover the top trends and upcoming hot topics to shoot, organise, and contextualise your content on the go.

In terms of content marketing, it has a feature that analyses your posts and allows you to streamline production processes depending on the feedback. Curata leads in terms of content curation but is a great contender for a curation and marketing management combination programme.

Book a demo now and try it out!

Buzzsumo

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As a marketer or an SEO expert, analysing a keyword before embedding it into your content is a sensible thing to do. Buzzsumo allows you to analyse the best performing content for any industry or competitor right now. Finding a key influencer isn’t a problem anymore with this tool.

BuzzSumo allows a demo, but in order to take full benefit I would recommend going for one of its premium plans according to your requirements.

Spredfast

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Spredfast takes the number one spot for social media marketing and management for enterprises. It helps you to upgrade your social media marketing strategy by targeting audiences in peak periods, improving your relationships with users and therefore ensuring their continued custom.

As a programme that assists with the most complicated of enterprise social media strategies, it will undoubtedly be able to enhance the strategies of much smaller businesses and agencies, too.

Sprinklr

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Sprinklr isn’t just a social media management tool, but it is also a device that enables you to find out what your customers are saying about you and your business. You can monitor all of your social media accounts, gaining an insight into customer reviews and user satisfaction from a single dashboard in real-time.

It will also help you to adjust your social media strategy accordingly to get the most out of the specific platform in order to boost sales and business reputation.

Talkwalker

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For general marketing, a powerful tool is Talkwalker. It offers vast data coverage, top-quality image recognition, and is the best programme for customer satisfaction analysis with its AI-Powered Sentiment feature.

Try out the free demo to see if it’s right for you.

Edgar

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If time is your biggest problem, Edgar efficiently manages your social media platforms at your own convenience. Sharing your content on social media is something that requires a lot of time, which instead could be invested into other important tasks.

This programme will help you schedule your posts on multiple social networks at once, while also homing in on sharing and re-sharing to boost your online presence and audience engagement.

Simply Measured

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Simply Measured works best as a social media analytics tool to keep you updated with the conversations that your customers are having on your social media accounts. Like some other big social media marketing tools, it works by analysing your social performance, tracking which of your posts are being shared the most, and processing the conversions to create a report on your performance to see how you could improve.

It is important to track your social media platforms to stay aware of online movements and audience satisfaction in order to sustain growth marketing.

Sendible

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Developing a strong social media strategy makes for a successful business. Sendible helps you manage several social networks from one place at one time. You can schedule your posts and engage with your audience whenever you like with this programme. Sendible also helps you measure your ROIs easily from one place.

Navigating around this site is very easy, with everything on a single dashboard. Social media management has never been easier with their mobile app, allowing you to monitor your accounts on the go.

Cision

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Cision is one of the leading online marketing tools for any business type. It will help you manage your social media marketing strategy and simultaneously keep track of your progress.

You will also be able to identify relevant social influencers to hit the right audience; plan and share the interesting content; and keep track of all the impact happening around. It helps you to engage and communicate with your audience with simple and easy methodology.

Facebook Pages Manager

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Facebook is currently the biggest social media network being used by almost every individual, whether for personal or business use. So, using Facebook as a marketing platform for your business is a no-brainer.

You can create meaningful posts on your pages for your own targeted audience, schedule multiple posts to save time, and engage with your audience constantly. In Facebook Pages Manager, you can manage multiple pages at once; even if you have different businesses. It’s especially useful for agencies dealing with multiple clients.

Facebook is the way to go for your growing marketing strategy.

Leadfuze

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Whether you’re a marketer, a businessman, or an agency runner, it is your mission to continuously increase sales. LeadFuze takes away your worries with regards to targeting the right audience and managing your marketing strategy to boost sales. This programme will reach out to the rightful audience through personal emails or other contacting perspective in order to pique interest in your product or service.

You don’t have to even create an email list manually: LeadFuze bots will do it for you automatically.

Nuvi

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You won’t stop loving the visuals of this social media marketing tool: its unique dashboard provides you with easy monitoring of your traffic and social media audience. Plus, it keeps you constantly up-to-date with mobile alerts.

Its monitoring, analysis, reporting, and publishing features will help you to stay one step ahead with your marketing strategy. Go for this tool to push your social media marketing to success, and to take your mind off the intricacies of managing every small task.

eClincher

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eClincher is known to be a powerful social media marketing tool, supporting all the top social networks for you. It’s best for small businesses, marketing professionals, and brands. It helps with scheduling posts and publishing them automatically at the time you set it, which could save you a lot of time.

It contains a Google Chrome extension and also a link shortener, which makes things a lot easier for you on the go.

Tracx

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Tracx is a powerful social marketing and monitoring tool that will track all insights, social engagements, measurements of the ROIs and team performance, and will help you to analyse all initiatives in order to take your strategy to the next level. What are you waiting for?

Conclusion

Whatever tool you are going to use for your social media marketing and management strategy, each one of the above offers the best features you need, one way or another. So, choose your tool wisely, depending on what you’re currently focused on. Try out multiple trial versions to find your perfect solution.

Let us know in the comments what you use – do you have any more to add to this list? 

Hey – thanks for reading! We hope you learned a lot about social marketing tools today.

 

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How We Used Facebook Ads To Generate Over $200,000 In Extra Revenue In 2017

Introduction:

Welcome back to ‘Words from the W I S. E. O’ – we’ve got a great post for you today!

This post is by Alex Meyerhans of Human Proof Designs shares how the company made a lot of extra cash last year just through Facebook ads – a whopping $200,000 to be exact.

Want to know how? Keep reading to learn how you could do the same…

 

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How We Used Facebook Ads To Generate Over $200,000 In Extra Revenue In 2017

In February 2017, I joined HumanProofDesigns as the guy in charge of paid traffic. I had never run an ad in my life. What’s between that and six figures in revenue from FB ads with a 20x ROAS?

That’s what you’re going to discover today.

For those of you who don’t know, HumanProofDesigns is an Internet Marketing company focused on helping affiliates succeed. We build done-for-you affiliate sites and provide pretty much every service affiliates may need, from content to links. But most importantly, we focus on training, community, and “showing the way” through our blog.

In this article, we’re going to be dissecting FB ads and how we’ve used them to get awesome results, but first…

  1. Why Paid Traffic?

For some of you the answer may be dead clear. Paid traffic is on-demand, is scalable and can be sent to any page of your liking. Because, you know, good luck ranking a squeeze page like this one for anything:

For every goal you may have in your marketing needs (such as generating leads or sales) there’s a campaign for you. Ads allow us to put our message in front of the right people, pretty much instantly, and that’s a powerful thing. How powerful, you may ask? Well, a post of this kind wouldn’t be complete without a mandatory “money shot”.

So here it is:

Let me explain a couple things: Most of our campaigns are retargeting campaigns. Like that one you see there where $223.49 ad spend “got us” $53,243.00. There’s quotes there because there’s a lot more than meets the eye (and I’ll explain later).

For those of you who aren’t familiar with the term “retargeting” it basically means advertisers follow people around based on their behavior (a bit creepy, I know). So, for instance if you’ve seen a sales page on our site, a retargeting ad would bring you back to that sales page in hopes of a second touch getting you to buy the product, basically.

Retargeting is 80% of our ad game, and the rest is lead generation… and sometimes (but rarely) just traffic for brand awareness purposes and audience building (more on this later).

So, let’s jump into each type of campaign and how you can use them to grow your business.

2. Before we start: Understanding sales funnels

I’m not going to go crazy explaining what sales funnels are here, mostly because I think Digital Marketer has done a better job on this article than I’d ever be able to do myself. But to give a tl:dr version, a sales funnel is a system that transforms visitors into buyers, and then into repeat customers.

I’m mentioning funnels here because FB ads aren’t magic. Sure thing, they’ll bring traffic to your site, but without a funnel you’ll be wasting that traffic. If you have a system in place though, you can do wondrous things.

So, what makes a good funnel?

  1. A good funnel warms up brand-new visitors: Funnels start by simply warming up visitors. By presenting the brand, who we are and what we do. New customers are the blood of any business, and most new customers start with someone who doesn’t know you at all.

Think about a series of blog posts with your most stellar content. If a brand-new visitor was ever introduced to that series, he or she would be much more likely to then (at least) consume more of your content and hopefully care about what you have to offer.

Here’s a good explanation about traffic temperatures.

2. A good funnel generates leads: The next thing is to transform those visitors into contacts – people you can reach out to directly via email or FB messenger (or any channel of your choice really) whenever you want to tell them something. About your latest post (so you warm them up more) or about your product or your latest offer.

3. A good funnel generates customers on the cheap: So, obviously a funnel’s mission is to generate customers, but a good funnel will also get those customers for a low amount of money. Both in terms of what the customer pays (so the barrier to become one is low, think about a $7 product vs a $700 product) and what you pay to acquire that customer

4. A good funnel increases LTV: The more your customers spend with you over time, the more you can spend to acquire them simply because you know that you’ll make the money back multiple times over the course of the next 3-6-12 months. A good funnel is designed to make repeat sales out of the same customer pool.

If you’re a seasoned marketer you know this already, but do you know what you NEED to make the most out of FB ads? A strong email marketing game.

Let me rephrase: Email is the single most important part of a good sales funnel. If your email game is on-point, you can plug FB ads at any point of the funnel and get crazy returns. And we’re going to see how right now:

3. Plugging Paid traffic into a funnel – Types of campaigns and how to make them work.

So, before I jump into each campaign, I’m assuming you know how to set up your account, use the FB ads manager  and how to create audiences. If you don’t, I’ve linked to some good resources in the previous sentence.

Now, let’s start at the beginning:

  1. Traffic Campaigns

These campaigns have a very simple goal: Bring NEW visitors to your site. Or put otherwise, to increase brand awareness. They also serve to build up pixel data (and therefore, audiences you can market to).

The type of content you send traffic to via this campaign has to be epic. Actionable stuff that leaves the reader better than he or she was when the initial click happened, and hopefully eager to read more of what you have to offer.

At the same time, whenever you’re doing paid traffic to a blog post, you must be sure your lead-generation elements are ready. Think about content locking, sidebar widgets or a lightbox offering a free eBook, to name a few ways. If you can convert some of that direct traffic to leads on the first touch, that’s awesome.

Now, you run these campaigns to cold audiences, so how do you go about targeting them the right way?

Here are a few tips:

  • Spend a couple minutes dissecting the person who’d benefit the most by reading the blog post you’ll be promoting. List a bunch of interests and some demographic data (age, gender, location…)
  • Cross-section as many of those interests as you possibly can so you show the ad to people with a STRONG interest
  • Exclude demos that you know won’t/can’t buy your products (there’s no point obviously)

Here’s an example of the targeting I used to promote a blog post about Dom selling a “failed” site for 40k. We chose that post because it shows who Dom is, how we make money with websites and tells a good story. You’ll see it’s got plenty of lead-generation elements on the page. Feel free to subscribe!

I cross-sectioned three pools of interest. One is sites and site builders, the other one is affiliate marketing and the other one is marketing. You’ll see each “pool” has many interests inside of it, but they’re all super-similar. This helps bringing the final audience size up. For this sort of campaign, you want a pool of 500k to 1M people.

I also excluded an audience made of all website visits in the last 180 days, so we show the ad ONLY to new, fresh eyes.

The results were quite decent:

We did generate more than 10 leads though, as the event “lead” would not trigger with many of our leadgen elements. You see too that we tested more than one audience. Always be testing.

What about the copy and the creative?

For the image, I advise you always use the same image you’ve got as the post featured image to keep the ad scent (so the image the visitor clicks on the ad is the same one that he/she sees on the other side).

For the copy, here’s the one I used:

See, the copy screams “content, content, content” and, if you own a site you consider a failure, it also screams “value!” and that’s what you’d like your copy to look like.

2. Lead Generation Campaigns

These are meant to grow your email list and launch people down the email sequence that will ultimately transform them into buyers, so it’s very important that you get them right. We do leadgen campaigns to two different audiences.

  • Cold audiences: Like the ones I showed you on the previous section.
  • Warm audiences: People who already know who we are (but aren’t in our list). Let’s see how to set this up…

So, for you to be able to show your leadgen ads to people who’ve already seen your content effectively, you need to be segmenting your traffic. For that, you want to go and create custom audiences based on topics. Here’s what ours look like:

Since we talk about several different topics on our blog, I’ve created audiences based on the main topics we cover (hint, here’s how: which essentially means you list every URL on the topic and then put a few fall-back slug keywords so that new posts you publish in the future get added to that audience too).

Now, if I want to promote a lead magnet about some email outreach templates, I’ve already got an audience that knows who we are and it’s interested on SEO. It should get fairly good results from that, shouldn’t it? You bet it does:

Let’s have a look at one of those ads to see the type of copy and creative I use for leadgen ads (this isn’t for the email templates but for another lead magnet we launched earlier last year):

I know that green background is ugly, but I split-tested 7 different color variations and this was the winner. And I’d say the reason is that it simply stands out.

You see, something I’ve come to realize over the last months is: most people try too hard with their ads, with their copy and with their landing pages. Sometimes (most of the time really) simpler is better.

So, key elements here: The same PDF cover we feature on the landing page is featured in the image (ad scent). It’s clear that is a download by both the image and the [FREE DOWNLOAD] text. I’ve used copy from the landing page on the description (for congruency and ad scent) and the image lands on the ugly side. Ugly stuff gets noticed. That’s what we want.

Extra tip: Keep your ad copy short, for the love of God. People don’t want to read the 70,000 reasons they should download your stuff, they only need one quick line telling them what’s inside/the benefits.

You can also create retargeting ads for your lead magnets to maximize the amount of people who sign up. I’ll show you how to create retargeting audiences in the next section

3. Product Campaigns.

For me these could be split into two different types of campaign:

  • Product retargeting: Where we retarget people who have seen the product page but haven’t bought
  • Product promotion: Where we bring a product in front of a fitting (warm) audience for the first time

There’s a few caveats to be aware of when we create our retargeting audiences, so let’s proceed with an example and have a look at what our audiences look like.

So, at HPD we sell done-for-you affiliate sites like I’ve mentioned above right? Here’s how I set the retargeting audience:

Quite simple. Include people who have seen and exclude people who have bought (if you’ve seen the upsell page, it means you’ve bought). You need to think the logic because it isn’t always that easy though.

Here’s another example. This is a cart abandonment retargeting audience:

It’s not perfect, as someone could have seen the /checkout/ page while purchasing something else, but it’s alright.

What about product promos? We simply use our segmented audiences shown above.

An ad example you say? Sure:

So, this is a retargeting ad for our Aged Sites. You see the same elements as we’ve talked before. Short, to the point copy. Some emojis to get extra visibility and the same wording as we use on the sales page for consistency.

Oh, and this is the ad that got us 53k out of $200. Here are the reasons:

 

  • It’s our most expensive and exclusive product. People looking at Aged Sites have budget. I don’t need to tell you what people with budget do.
  • The audience is very small (less than 2,000 people) and we’ve been running the SAME ad for months. Facebook has so much data on that ad that the optimization is ridiculous.
  • Display frequency is very high. I see that ad literally every time I open Facebook.
  • Because all the previous, our cost per click is extremely low. And most of the times when we get a click, it’s from someone with intent to buy (if not a site, some of our other services)

And if you clicked on that link above that ad will hunt you forever 😀

  1. Promo Campaigns.

Whenever you’re doing a promo (for instance on Black Friday) it’s a good idea to double down on your paid ads. For these campaigns, you can do both retargeting and product promotion. Here’s the trick:

Remember to turn off your regular product ads when you run promos. So, if you have an ad retargeting some PBN links and then you run a promo, turn the original one off. When you have more than one campaign going for the same audience, results may be hurt. Plus, you don’t want to put two different messages in front of the same audience and confuse them.

A trick you can also use is to do PPE (pay per engagement) campaigns during this time.

For that, create a regular post on your FB page talking about the promo and boost it for shares and likes targeting people who already like your page. These cost virtually nothing and for $10 you may get a couple hundred likes and comments. What this will do is also increase the organic reach of that post to a lot more people who likes your page.

The result? You’re getting your message in front of people who already know who you are for virtually nothing. Because they’ll also be seeing the regular promo ad (on top of getting the boosted post) you make double sure your target audience SEES that you’re running a promo.

It’s more of a visibility thing. It works pretty well!

4. How to make sure you’re running the best possible ad

You want to be testing multiple ad variations at any given time. Different copy, different creatives, and when you do an ad to a cold audience, you may want to test different audiences at the same time.

We use AdEspresso, which allows us to input several variations of a given element of the ad (for instance, copy, but could also be the CTA button) and then it’ll create ad variations and split test them. You can do that manually too, it’s just a lot more time consuming.

Things I test: Plain copy vs copy with emojis. Professional creatives vs ugly creatives. Color vs b&w (black and white tends to perform very well because it’s uncommon to see a b&w photo in your feed. Expect this visibility trick to die as quick as general marketers get a hold of it though).

Things that aren’t worth testing (most of the time): CTA buttons. If you’re doing leadgen, “Download” is what you want, if you’re doing product “Learn More” is what you want. Same for traffic only. The rest don’t make much sense

5. Know your numbers

Before I mentioned that the more we can get people to buy from us, the more we can spend to get new customers. This essentially means: the higher your LTV (customer lifetime value) is, the higher your CAC (customer acquisition cost) can be without it hurting your business.

There’s a ton of different ways to estimate LTV, so I won’t cover that here. To put things simply, keep this rule of thumb in mind: If you know you’re going to make $300 off a customer over one year, you know you can spend up to $100 to acquire that customer and you’ll still have a healthy business (a 3:1 ratio is what you’re looking for here).

It’s obviously quite important to know this because if you don’t know how much you’re going to make from a customer, you don’t know if you’re paying too much (even though you may be paying “only” five bucks for a customer) or if you have room to scale an adset.

The best tip I can give you to make more money from FB ads is: Work out your post-purchase sequences (via email marketing mostly) so that the same customer comes again, and again, and again…

Also, keep a close eye on your ads. A lead generation campaign that’s getting you leads for $1 may from one week to another jump to $5 per lead and at that point you can’t keep the campaign running. That typically happens when the audience is depleted, or you’ve scaled the ad too far with an audience too small.

6. Final Thoughts.

FB ads are a great way to increase your reach, your list, and your sales. But you want to make sure you’re doing it right (and always keeping an eye on the results) so you’re not wasting money.

More importantly, you want to make sure you’ve got the systems on place to maximize returns from your ad spend. So, if you’re going to be working on one single thing, work on your backend… your upsell sequences, your indoctrination series, your post-purchase experience. Know your numbers.

Then you’ll be able to go and crush it with paid traffic.

Phew – that’s a lot to take in! We hope you learnt as much from this post as we did!

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A Beginner’s Guide to the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) Legislation and How It Affects You

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]One of the most important influences for business owners is governmental changes in legislation. And a piece of new legislation is about to be put into effect in the European Union, or EU.

This legislation is the General Data Protection Regulation, also known as GDPR, and it comes into effect on 25 May 2018. GDPR was originally proposed in the year 2014, and up until April 2016 Parliament had worked on creating a piece comprehensive data protection legislation.

Basically, if you do business in or with the EU, you need some clear, concise information about how this law works. Otherwise, if your business is in non-compliance, heavy fines await you.

The aim of this blog post is to break down, in simple terms, what exactly each of those requirements are and some tips for how to become compliant with them before the deadline.

As always, consult with your lawyer if you want specifics on how the new regulations are likely to affect you. Also note that this post does not constitute legal advice but simply serves as a guide to get your feet wet about all the new changes with GDPR.

Background

But first, a brief history. According to the dedicated website, GDPR is designed to defend EU citizens against any potential online threats. The online sphere has changed since 1995, when the Data Protection Directive 95/46/EC was enacted. Data privacy as a whole still remains the focus. However, there are multiple changes to the regulations associated with how the EU protects citizens’ data.

In the past, there was a lot of legwork that went with data protection. Local Departments of Political Affairs, or DPOs, needed to approve any data processing done by data controllers. This consisted of sending new notifications or registrations to every DPO. If you own a multinational company, you know how much of a nightmare that was if you did business in the EU. Most Member States had varying requirements for notification.

However, GDPR is changing much of that. Many of the sweeping changes are listed below.

A Larger Range of Influence

If you run a business outside of the Union, get ready for some changes. The enforceable range of the GDPR is one of the larger changes to come from the law.

GDPR affects all companies that process the personal data of citizens in the EU, wherever that company resides. Before GDPR came into effect, jurisdiction of data protection was not clear and often was situational. Now, however, any personal data processing by controllers and processers residing in the Union is subject to GDPR. It doesn’t matter whether or not those individuals or companies are also in the Union. Operations that are outside of the Union have technically fewer restrictions, but not by much.

Any businesses offering services or goods (whether or not they require payment) in the EU is subject to the GDPR. Businesses that engage in behaviour monitoring in the Union are subject to the GDPR.

A representative in the EU is also required for businesses who process EU citizens’ data.

Stricter Consent

You know those really long Terms of Service that appear before using a digital product? Under GDPR, those are looking at some changes. Although longer Terms of Service are likely to always exist, what goes into the Terms of Service and when they’re seen is now more regulated by GDPR.

Citizens of the EU now must fully understand what they agree to. In addition, the reason why data processing is required now must be present in the consent given.

Additionally, users must now affirmatively give consent, rather than passively doing so. To give an example, when presented with a check box on a website, the user must tick the box themselves, affirming their consent. The box cannot be pre-checked for the user. That would be an example of passive consent.

The subject giving consent must be discernible from other matters in legal documents. The client’s consent must be provided in a form that is both intelligible and accessible.

An important exception to note is that there are six lawful reasons to hold personal data which are as good as a user’s consent. These are contracts, legitimate interests, vital interests, public tasks, legal obligations and member state derogations (which includes investigative journalism, negotiations, and other matters of that nature).

Finally, the subject has to be able to withdraw consent as easily as they gave it. A good piece of advice is to dedicate a process to this; for example, you could set up a web page on your web site that explains the process to the user, asks them if they are sure if they wish to have their data deleted, and then submits the request that the user’s data needs to be erased.

Harsher Penalties

If you are not compliant, the highest fine that can be levied against you under GDPR is 4% of your annual global turnover. Alternatively, depending which amount is higher, the government may fine you for up to €20 million.

Now, before you start hyperventilating, let’s be clear. In all likelihood, a lower fine should apply to you unless you break a very important rule. For example, they could fine you for not having valid consent as defined by GDPR before processing personal data.

Designed for Privacy

Though the EU has always held privacy as an essential right, the GDPR ensures that organisations and companies have safeguards in place to protect privacy. Under GDPR, controllers need to design data systems with data protection in mind. This is instead of controllers tacking it on as an afterthought.

Also, controllers can only hold and process the data that is necessary for processing. Identifying data, such as race, religion, political affiliation, and ethnicity, is to be collected as little as possible. Companies that process more data than is needed are opening themselves up to some pointed questions from the Information Commissioner’s Office.

Data Protection Officers

The previous system of approval for data-processing activities was inefficient to say the least. Now, under GDPR, companies hire or appoint data protection officers, or DPOs, to keep records internally. Though they can be employees of the company, it is not recommended, because that could result in a conflict of interest, more of which is covered below.

DPO appointment is mandatory only for controllers and processors who regularly and systematically monitor data subjects “on a large scale“, as the GDPR says in Article 37 1b. DPO appointment is also mandatory for those who manage data related to criminal convictions or offences.

Here is a list of DPO responsibilities.

-The DPO must be an expert on data protection law.

-The local authorities in the province of your company needs to receive the officer’s contact information, as stated in the GDPR in Article 37 7.

The officer needs relevant resources from the data processors and controllers to do their job and keep up-to-date on updates in their field.

-The DPO must report to the highest manager of your company and no one else.

– DPOs cannot perform tasks that cause a conflict of interest. For example, if the DPO is a controller processing data, he or she may be tempted to steal or misuse the data being parsed. Alternatively, if the DPO is a subordinate of another manager, that manager could use the subordinate’s position as a DPO to manipulate the data.

Cloud-Based Applications

Therefore, cloud storage, cloud servers, and cloud applications are not out of GDPR’s consideration and enforcement. These cloud applications include services such as DropBox and WeTransfer. If you use the cloud, here are a few suggestions to become GDPR-compliant.

  1. Ensure that any cloud service that your company uses has airtight security. If an application does not meet the bar, either migrate to a similar application with better security or implement security measures for when a security breach happens.
  2. Create a data-processing agreement with the companies that you decide to work with. The agreement should ensure somewhere that both companies are GDPR-compliant, or that they both work to become so as soon as possible.
  3. Talk with the companies that you have created the agreements with and make certain that they only collect and process the bare minimum of personal data. They should also limit “revealing” data, which includes information such as race, religion, ethnicity, or political affiliation.
  4. Finally, look over the Terms of Service of the application and check to see if a user’s data is deleted upon the deletion of the application. You do not want the information that you have collected from users hanging around cyberspace. The faster that they delete the information that you have stored, the better it is for you and your company.
  5. Ensure any processors you use who have servers based in the US have valid certificates under the EU-US Privacy Shield agreement. (You can find this out by checking this website https://www.privacyshield.gov/list).

Becoming Compliant

The primary rules for which the government could fine you for non-compliance are below. Keep in mind that the rules here apply to controllers and processors slightly differently. Data processors act under the authority of your company’s instructions; data controllers, act on their own, in compliance with the GDPR (so more than likely, you!). These new rules are in accord with the new rights that data subjects have, including breach notification, right to access, right to be forgotten, and data portability.

Rule: Breach Notification

From time to time, you hear about giant data leaks in the news. These leaks are almost always followed by a rush from the affected to change their passwords and secure their accounts. Though leaks could always happen, your company’s potential response is changing thanks to GDPR.

Your company must notify customers of any breach within 72-hours after becoming aware of it. Your company must alert the Information Commissioner’s Office about the breach as well. Your company’s data processors must notify the affected customers. You must alert them without any extraneous delays on your company’s part after you become aware of the issue.

Rule: The Right to Access and the Right to Be Forgotten

These two rights are a big part of the expansion of data subject rights. It’s appropriate that you hear about them first.

  1. For the first right (the right to access) companies must be able to provide information about personal data, including if it is being processed, why, and where. Data controllers must also have an electronic, free copy of any personal data.
  2. The second right (the right to be forgotten) can also be called data erasure. This right allows data subjects to contact data controllers to do three things: erase his or her personal data, prevent any further spread of that data, or potentially prevent third parties from processing that data.

A withdrawal of consent from the subject or an outdated purpose for processing are both valid reasons for a subject to request erasure. However, there is an exception to this. Data controllers are required by this right to consider and compare the person’s rights to any interest from the public in the data’s availability before commencing erasure.

Rule: The Right of Data Portability

There is a brief, yet important, right outlined by GDPR that bears mentioning. It is the right for subjects to receive personal data related to them that they previously gave in a common, machine-readable format. They then possess the right to send the data to a different controller.

Putting It into Practice

Although there have been some tips included within these past few points, all of this still probably seems pretty complicated. A couple of possible real-world examples may help.

Say (like us) you run a digital marketing business. Your website also has a newsletter that helps customers stay on top of recent events. However, your newsletter isn’t quite off of the ground, so you want to boost it. You create a check box that pops up asking if users want to subscribe. If you do this, you cannot pre-check the boxes. Doing so would violate the GDPR. The users must check the boxes themselves.

The key here is that users must now choose to opt-in, rather than choosing to opt-out when relying on consent. Alternatively, you could potentially rely on one of the aforementioned alternatives to consent, which, as a reminder, are contracts, legitimate interests, vital interests, public tasks, legal obligations and member state derogations.

Speak with your lawyer about conducting a Legitimate Interest Assessment to find out if you can hold that personal data based on your legitimate interest in a given data subject.

For another example, say that you are the owner of a prominent prison in the EU. An ex-convict contacts one of your data controllers, requesting that his or her data be erased. What should you do? Well, at first you may think that you are obliged to submit to the request. However, the GDPR does allow data controllers to decide to honor a request like that only if it is good for the public. So, in this scenario, keeping the ex-convict’s data is probably in the public’s best interest. Therefore, you could safely deny the request.

Let It Settle

Oh, there is one last thing that wasn’t mentioned yet. Do not panic. If you start to panic, you are more likely to make mistakes. There are eighty-eight pages worth of material to go through and apply, and the EU’s courts should start to iron out any discrepancies that exist within the document.

Ultimately, education is key and if you continue to stay informed, current, and lawful regarding GDPR, you should emerge unscathed by all the new changes. One concrete way that you can prepare is by training all of your employees in accord with the newly revised Privacy Standard. If you can do that, you are well on your way to getting through this change.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_cta h2=”Still not quite sure about GDPR?” txt_align=”center” style=”flat” color=”pink”]Our law partner, Helix Law, have created a free legal advice line for any business owners concerned with GDPR.
Mention “SEOButler” when you call to make sure you speak with the right person.
CALL: +44 (0)1273 761 990 [/vc_cta][/vc_column][/vc_row]

Maintaining Your SEO Campaigns Over a Holiday Period

Running SEO campaigns is a full-time job – you have to make sure that your work is continuous and up to date, but there’s always periods in our lives where we can’t keep working on a campaign—this is especially true for the upcoming holidays. Whether it’s Christmas or a vacation period (we all need a break now and then) there are times when we must keep our or our client’s campaigns going when we’re not there to work on them directly.

When this happens, there are various things you can employ to keep your campaigns going in your absence.

Keep Your Social Presence Up to Date

One of the most important and easily remedied issues is keeping your social media presence up to date. You can easily do this by scheduling posts on your Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus, Pinterest & other social media accounts. Many websites allow this scheduling feature by default, but some do not. Use a tool, such as Buffer or HootSuite, which will allow you to schedule posts on all your social media accounts using one tool.

This takes care of the social media presence on your social profiles – but you also need to take care of the social presence on your website itself. To do this, you can install a plugin, such a SumoMe’s Share plugin, to encourage your users to share your content on their social accounts and send 1,000 social signals to your most important pages with a drip time scheduled for the entirety of your absence.

Keep Your Website Fresh with Quality Content

Another important step to ensure you keep your campaigns running smoothly when you are away is ensuring that the website is being updated with fantastic content that is relevant to the keywords you are targeting. Depending on what CMS you are using, there is usually a feature to schedule posts.

If you are using WordPress, you can change the Publish Time to a date in the future on the posts page.

23

It is recommended that you set one post to be published every week you are absent. You can, of course, write these posts before you leave and schedule them or hire a content writing service such as VeryCopy or using the PBNButler Content Section. Just be sure to develop a plan to determine the dates when you need them delivered so you are able to publish them on your site in an efficient manner.

Keep Up Backlink Velocity

It’s important that you don’t suddenly decrease backlink velocity— it is an obvious signal that links are being built unnaturally.

To ensure that backlink velocity is not effected, be sure to keep links being built while you are away. To do this, you can order links to be built and tell the vendor that you want them to be built on a certain date. Order a selection of links to ensure not all of the links that are built are done on same platform.

Some of these links could be:

Web 2.0s

Citations

PBN Links

If you have your own PBN network and you don’t need to rent the links, you can schedule these links to be posted in the same manner that you schedule posts to be published on your money site. Simply order the SEO Content and schedule it to be published on the correct date before you leave.

I hope this blog has helped you come up with some ideas on how to keep your SEO campaigns up and running while you’re enjoying your family or relaxation time! If you have any further suggestions, please put them in the comments section below. We’d love to hear your comments!

How we got our first dofollow link on The Huffington Post

Recently I have been wondering about The Huffington Post, especially about the fact that people are willing to pay a fair share of money to have a post live and indexed.
After some basic investigations, I found a bunch of guides and methods that people had pursued to get live on The Huffington Post. My first thought was, oh this is great! I’ll just get my team onto this.

And so I did, I challenged my writers and offered them a small gift card in this actual post:

 

So the poor souls tried, they wrote a great piece of content and submitted it, emailed the editor and other publishers on the site, all with no luck. In fact they started to get pretty frustrated.
And then one late night, I hit a stroke of luck when Dino Gomez shared a post in a group we both manage about how the Huffpost has launched a beta “open platform” for publishers to sign up and “just publish their content” called Athena.

 

The light-bulb post:

 

After seeing this, I immediately signed up and boasted to the writers that it looked like I will win their gift card. But of course only half the battle had been won. Immediately I found good links, put a scope together, and sent it over to one of our best writers and made use of our own “expert content” product.
Within 3-days the article was ready, and the writer had followed my instructions extremely well, adding some authority links as well as a “fairly” natural link to SEOButler.

The obvious next step would be to get this sucker live. Right after receiving the article, I sent it to our marketing team and asked them to upload it following the basics of HuffPost formatting guidelines. I also asked them to make sure that the links were present after posting the content to the platform.

A few hours later, the post was live in all its glory and I realised my first minor setback. As many of you are aware, I am currently visiting the Indian office (more expansion) so my account had been created on the Indian Huffington post.
See the post HERE

Links still present, the first thing I had to check for was the “rel-nofollow” tags on any of the links. After a quick search- none found. Damn! I thought to myself, “What a result!”

Next, I sent the article to our head of tech (Luke) to investigate if they could find any reason for it to not index. About 30-minutes later, they came back to me and said that while they couldn’t find anything obvious (even after “crawling the site as Google”). This does not mean that there isn’t another way that they were blocking it. Damn you HuffPost, you could have made it easier!

So at this point, I have a great post on their site, it has the links I want it to have, but so far, we don’t know if it will index.

The next logical conclusion was to wait a few days and see what happens.

 

Image result for spongebob 2 days later

 

You might have guessed what happened, absolutely nothing. No clicks on our links, no traffic, no signals.
But we don’t give up.

Next we pinged the URL with a variety of indexers (onehourindexer, direct submission to Google and a few others) and waited another couple of days, with absolutely no results. Damn.

Finally, I wanted to try my age old suspicion.
Johns idea: “In order for the HuffPost to see what content to flag for review, they must have a system in place that highlights content that gets a lot of attention. Once it has said attention, it may get manually reviewed and then switched to ‘index’.”

How do I get their attention Social Signals.
I spoke with my team and asked them to dump 1000 social signals onto our article within a short amount of time, my hopes being that they have some sort of tracker on their back-end that is based on “social attention”.

3 days later…

I wake up, and something tells me to check the HuffPost article’s url. And there she was, in all her glory:

 

And the link is still not showing any obvious signs of being “no-follow”.

Tools used:

– The Huffington Post signup page: Athena
– Content used: Expert Content alternatively you can use Money Site Content
– Signals used (remember to ask for fast delivery): 1000 Signals

So my conclusion for now:

– Your content has to be really well-written.
– Athena will let you publish content on the Huffington Post.
– Social Signals may contribute towards making your post “live”.
– Links are dofollow once the post goes live and is indexed

Next steps;

– I am going to use this method a few more times in the next few weeks in order to find a pattern and make sure it’s not a fluke.
– I am also going to test different methods to drive traffic to the post.
– This post will be updated soon. Stay tuned.

How to Protect and Power Up your PBNs Using a Free Tool

Hey folks!

This is Hernan from Semantic Mastery. First and foremost, I wanted to say thank you to Jonathan and the entire gang from PBN Butler for letting me post this article here. You guys are doing an amazing job, and I?m honored to be participating on the blog!

I bet you got intrigued by this post?s title. Today I?ll show you how you can protect, power up, enhance, and increase the link juice that you get from your PBN?s by using a simple automation tool/strategy.

By the end of this article, you?ll have a step-by-step blueprint on how to establish a ?set-and-forget? system, allowing you to work and focus on ranking your websites.

We all know that it hurts losing your PBN?s.

All of us invest a ton of money, resources, and time in finding the perfect domains, mounting them the best way possible, all while avoiding footprints, adding quality content, social signals, etc.

And the next thing you know, your PBN?s got deindexed and now they aren?t worth anything.

 

I remember the feeling of waking up after making the good ole? PBN run back in 2015, just to find out 75% my PBN?s had been wiped from the face of the earth. After investing hard earned cash and time into my PBN?s, finding out my PBN?s were worthless was a tough pill to swallow. I am sure all of you can relate to the feeling I had.

BUT, instead of grabbing an AK47 and storming big G?s offices, I focused on evolving my approach so that I could still get the benefits of PBN?s, without the headaches and fear of a potential hit.

So here it is? my system to protect and power up your PBN?s using free automation tools. Ready? Let?s go!

 

 

Ok Hernan, so how does this work?

We all want to make PBN?s look as legit as possible, right? You want them to be unique, with decent content, and potentially a good looking guy or gal as the ?author? of that blog.

And let?s be real here; that author or persona is not a real person, unless he or she is also sharing stuff on social media.

I mean, think about it. Do you really think your PBN will pass a manual sniff (review) if your PBN (or rather your PBN?s ?owner?) doesn?t have a social presence?

They can be smiling all you want on your PBN?s sidebar and have a great description and bio, but without some social media presence, they are worthless.

Once you understand the power of social media to protect and legitimize your PBNs, it?s time to take it a step further.

Putting those fancy social widgets or having a stall Facebook profile linking from the PBN isn?t enough. We need to dig deeper. We need to actually SHARE stuff on those social profiles, as a real human being would.

You must be thinking, ?So now, not only do I need to worry about putting good content on my PBN, but I also need to open social media accounts for my PBN persona and actually SHARE stuff on them? Are you joking??

And while it might sound like a ton of work (multiply this for the number of PBN?s you currently own), let me introduce you to a little tool that will put your PBN social presence on complete autopilot?

 

 

Introducing IFTTT for Your PBNs

IFTTT stands for ?If this, then that?. Simply put, it?s an automation tool that will allow you to work based on triggers.

It?s 100% cloud based. And it?s also 100% free.

It?s so powerful and complex that it can do things like sending you an SMS when The Weather Channel says it?s going to rain in your area.

Or share a digest with you via email when your favorite basketball team wins a match.

??That?s great, Hernan. But what does this have to do with SEO??

You see, within the myriad of different triggers and actions you can use IFTTT for, we have been using a specific set of rules or ?recipes? to pimp our SEO.

Specifically, by sharing our PBN articles on social media.

So the main idea behind this technique is that every time you post an article on your PBN blog, the same article will be shared on your persona?s social media profile.

And the best part is, you can literally set it up and forget about it.

Once IFTTT is setup with your recipes, you won?t need to worry about it anymore!

 

Let?s break this down step-by-step, shall we?

Now that you have a general overview of the system, let?s break it down so you know exactly what to do.

Step 1: Setup your PBN.

This is a pretty self-explanatory step. You can use one of the many guides on this blog or order your PBN?s from Jonathan and his team.

It?s important that every PBN that you create has someone that can ?own? it and the content in it. These profiles are also known as ?Personas?.

So if you are putting together a PBN about health and fitness, your personas will need to have stories and backgrounds related to the niche.

 

Step 2: Open your Persona?s Social Profiles.

Again, nobody will ever believe that your Persona is actually a human being in the flesh unless you take the time to open his or her social profiles.

Here is a list of social profiles you can open for each persona (and each PBN):

  • com
  • Facebook Page
  • Google Plus Page
  • Twitter
  • com
  • Gravatar
  • Blogspot
  • Tumblr
  • Medium
  • Weebly
  • Pinterest
  • Diigo
  • Delicious
  • Instagram (can?t be posted with IFTTT as of yet)

 

Step 3: Make them Look and Feel Real.

If you really want to go that extra mile, make the profiles feel as real as possible. That means using descriptions, uploading pictures, using Geotags and being consistent everywhere.

For example, if your Persona is a doctor from Chicago, you want it to be consistent in Google Plus, Twitter, Gravatar, Medium, etc. Make the profiles look and feel real.

(Not like those spammy webcam girls that hit you up on Facebook every day? or wait, is it just me?)

PRO TIP: If you want to make them look even more real, use ?cross authorized logins?. Meaning, use your persona?s Twitter profile to sign up for Medium. Use your Google Plus login to open your Tumblr account and your Pinterest account, etc.

 

Step 4: Authorize IFTTT to Post to Your Social Profiles

Once you have your profiles opened, pimped, and hooked up, it?s time to upload them into IFTTT. This is a super simple process. You just go into channels and search for your different social media profiles. That way you can start authorizing them and prepare them for the recipes to come.

 

 

Step 5: Don?t Forget That Attribution Link!

Please remember: you?ll be posting your PBN posts into your persona?s social media profiles. So in order to avoid ?duplicate content? (if there?s such a thing), you want to use something called an ?Attribution Link?.

Basically, what this does is automatically insert a link at the end or beginning of each post saying:

?The post (post link) appeared first here (PBN link)?.

This can be done on autopilot using something like SEO by Yoast plugin or Semantic Mastery?s RSS Control plugin.

 

 

Step 6: Use your PBNs RSS FEED to Trigger the Posting.

So here?s where the magic happens. Once you have your social media profiles authorized on IFTTT and your attribution link in place, it?s time to setup the recipes.

Basically a recipe in IFTTT terms is comprised by two elements, a trigger, and an action.

As I stated before, you want your PBN posting to trigger IFTTT sharing all over your persona?s social media profiles.

My team and I have put together a spreadsheet that you can use which holds the set of recipes we use to make this happen.

It?s completely free and you can download it by clicking here.

 

Once you have copied that spreadsheet in your Google Drive folder, you just use the pre-setup recipes and import them into IFTTT.

 

Step 7: Test your New IFTTT Syndication Network

Now that you have instructed IFTTT to post to your social profiles every time you post in your PBN, it?s time to actually post on your PBN!

It can take anywhere from 10 to 30 minutes from the time you post until IFTTT syndicates to your persona?s social profiles. So don?t fret if you don?t see immediate movement.

Just post, go do something else, and check it out later.

 

Best Practices and Frequently Asked Questions

Whew! We?ve come a long way my friend! Congratulations! Now you have a blueprint to use with every PBN in order to protect them and increase their link juice. Here are some additional tips and tricks:

  • Disable IFTTT automatic shortening service. Otherwise all of the links inside your Syndication network will look like ?Ift.tt?. This is enabled by default and all you need to do is to go into IFTTT settings and untick that box.

 

  • You?ll need one IFTTT account per PBN and you can only post to one profile of each account. So, for example, if you want to post to several Facebook pages from the same PBN, you?ll need to open multiple IFTTT accounts.
  • Remember that every post you make will now be replicated and will have social signals attached to it. This means that you might need to be more careful with anchor texts (since now you?re not only posting on your PBN but on a ton of other social sites).
  • Use deep-linking! Link your PBN posts together so that they receive the benefit from each social post.
  • If you want to build links to your PBN?s, you now have a beautiful Tier 1 to do so (your persona?s social profiles), so you can power up your PBN?s without being afraid of burning them out. How cool is that?!

 

I hope you have enjoyed this article and that you use it to protect and make your PBN?s more powerful.

If you loved it, share it with someone that needs to see this and/or leave a comment below. I?d be thrilled to answer your questions.

Have a great one!

Hernan

 

3 Hugely Expensive Local SEO Mistakes You’re Making in 2016

By Dino Gomez, Dynamik 365

Local SEO has become more challenging in the last six months. With Google changing from the historic 7 pack in local maps results, to the 3 pack a.k.a, Snack Pack, there is less room for mistakes if you want that first page real estate.

The thing is, you probably know local SEO like the back of your hand. You’re an expert but results aren’t there anymore. What are you really doing wrong?

The answer is actually quite simple. Let me introduce the most common local SEO mistakes in 2016.

 

1). Your Local Keyword Rankings and Client Reporting Is Wrong

Google has removed location search. You know this. You can’t change the city you are searching from to verify rankings anymore. Yes, most rank trackers are fairly accurate and can account for your target city but your rank tracker cannot account for proximity searches.

A proximity search is when somebody is searching for a local business or service and wants the closest nearby solutions.

Examples, Gym near me, coffee shop, 24 hour liquor store, or all nude strip club. (You catch my drift…)

 

Taking a look at these search examples (above) you’ll notice they don’t include a city but suggest to Google you’re conducting a proximity search and want something that is closest to your actual location.

Now because there are traditionally 50+ coffee shops or liquor stores in each city; when you conduct a proximity search Google is going to show you the closest options that have decent,  not necessarily the best local SEO.

Naturally customers are going to request driving directions or place a phone call from their mobile phone to the closest coffee shop or hair salon and head there.

The thing is the closest coffee shop probably isn’t in the snack pack in Google search results for City + Keyword. So in fact you may be driving leads, traffic, phone calls, and new customers without realizing it. If you don’t realize it, then your client won’t and you’ll lose the account and easy money.

 

Action Step:

Moving forward local SEO reporting should include analytics directly from the Google My Business dashboard.

Your Google My Business dashboard records the following with regards to your local maps listing:

  • Number of maps impressions in search results
  • Number of clicks to your website
  • Number of phone calls placed
  • Number of driving directions requested

 

Image 1

 

Check out these numbers from Google’s Insights dashboard above. In the last 30 days this client of mine has received 504 requests for driving directions and 403 phone calls placed that otherwise would not be accounted for using just rank tracking as a performance indicator.

 

Taking a look at these numbers you’ll get the most accurate picture on how your local SEO is stacking up.

Again often times because of the actual address of your local business (could be outer city limits) you’ll have a tougher time ranking in the snack pack for city + keyword?.

So use Google’s own free analytics to measure true results and make sure your clients understand how proximity search works.

You might be crushing local SEO and not even realize it.

 

2). You’re Not Geo Tagging Images & Syndicating

image 2

Geo tagging images you’ve heard of. But as local SEO experts get lazy they often times forget the power of geo tagging images prior to completing local business citations.

By having geo tagged images syndicated to the likes of the 100+ local directory listings you create; you are doing multiple things to increase your local SEO including:

1). Affirming to Google the correct address of your business via photo and the new directory listing (basically a double citation in one listing)

2). Ensuring that the photos associated with your local business in image search are going to be the ones you have selected.

Use Google’s very own Picasa to geo tag images before buying a citation gig with PBN Butler.

Of course besides including geo tagged images within your local business directory listings you should also be using tagged images for social networking and social bookmarking sites.

 

3). You’re Not Updating Google Plus & Actively Managing Your Local Listing

image 3

Do I have your attention? Ok, listen up.

After conducting several individual tests myself, I have come to the conclusion that updating a local business Google Plus page with posts, similar to a Facebook page, can work to give you an extra ranking boost and will also drive new business.

Again something you’ve heard before but you were too busy watching the NBA Playoffs to remember.

 

Action:

Automate the syndication of status updates to hit your Google plus page. There are several online tools that will help you with this including Buffer.

The key is to include in your Google Plus posts:

  • Geo Tagged Images
  • Links to your target site
  • Hashtags

 

Again you’ll know if posting to Google Plus is effective because it is reported in your Google My Business Insights dashboard.

You’ll see number of posts live, views, and interaction similar to a Facebook business page.

But what you won’t see is Google taking notes of the fact that you are actively managing your business directly on their platform for which they of course prefer and will reward with small ranking increases over time.

 

Bonus Tip: Respond to local business reviews already you lazy SOB. The more content on your maps listing the better your rankings. Makes sense, right

 

About the Guest Author:

Dino Gomez is the host of the 6 Figure SEO Podcast on Itunes and runs an SEO video blog at Dynamik 365.
Check out his site for other killer SEO tips.image 4

 

Create, Connect, and Convert: 4 Tips to a Success Mobile Marketing Campaign

Smartphone users in the United States spend an average of 158 minutes or more than 2 ? hours every day on their mobile devices, and 75 percent will even bring their cell phone or tablet into the bathroom with them. Clearly portable Internet access is a deeply personal and very important thing, and building a successful mobile marketing campaign hinges on a business’s ability to create and foster that sense of connectivity. Here’s how:

  1. It’s a Beautiful Day in the Neighbourhood

Catchy childhood ditties by Mr. Rogers aside, there is something special about shopping locally. These days some 40 percent of mobile searches are focused on location, and your business strategy needs to keep that in mind. If you have a brick-and-mortar business, you can’t just cross your fingers and hope someone will drive past your shopping complex and notice your awning. Use geo-targeting to focus your advertisements on nearby zip codes, incorporate localized keywords into your content, and optimize your meta tags using relevant city or shopping center names.

  1. Make Your Mobile Design Consumer Friendly

Three things will kill your audience’s attention span before you can say “sign up here”: boring design, pages that don’t load, and links that go nowhere. You can pay a web designer to optimize your site for superior mobile performance so that it automatically adapts to the technological limitations and/or actual specifications like screen size of whatever device your end user decides to view your content on. It’s an extra step (which means extra money, of course) to take, but the upside is significant: 70 percent of searches initiated on mobile devices lead to online action in an hour or less. That means that a potential costumer looking at your website now may be paying for their purchase in mere minutes. That’s a pretty powerful reason to ensure your mobile design is approachable.

  1. Make Your Audience Feel Involved

Quick question: What feels better, being talked at or being a part of the conversation? There’s a difference between delivering a message and getting consumers involved in a dialogue that’s beneficial to both parties, and the latter is much more likely to build loyalty. There are a lot of ways to get your readers involved:

  • Look for Guest Bloggers ? Surprise! Your opinion isn’t the only worthwhile one out there. By allowing other experts to have a voice on your platform you come off as inclusive and appreciate of the insights of others.
  • Retweet and Repost ? If your social media followers are taking the time to share their thoughts with you, show that you value the time and effort they took by passing on their ideas. You don’t have to agree with everything they say ? in fact, you can use the opportunity to elaborate on their tweet or even take an opposing but respectful stance ? because it’s more about the interaction and recognition.
  • Acknowledge Criticism ? It’s hard to hear criticisms, especially when the thing being critiqued is something you worked particularly hard of or are particularly proud of, but even negative feedback needs to be acknowledged. You wouldn’t ignore a ringing phone in your office, and you shouldn’t ignore less-than-positive posts on your mobile marketing platforms. Use it as an opportunity for growth and move on to bigger and better things.
  1. Expand Your Concept of Content

Content marketing has proved its value, but the written word is slowly giving way to videos, infographics, and webinars and these new channels offer new ways to connect. For instance, 40 percent of video views on YouTube come from users on mobile devices. Creating your own YouTube channel allows you to deliver branded content that introduces audiences to what your business is about in a fun, entertaining, and memorable manner.

The bottom line: Ask not what your audience can do for you, but what you can do for your audience. By creating content that makes them feel valued and involved, you’ll foster a connection that may eventually turn into long-term loyalty and a whole lot of sales.

About the Author

Sophorn Chhay

Sophorn is an inbound marketer specializing in attracting targeted visitors and generating sales qualified leads. Through Trumpia?s SMS marketing automation solution he helps businesses and organizations communicate effectively with their customers or members. Watch Trumpia’s 5-Minute Demo on how to execute an effective mobile marketing strategy.