Monthly Archives: October 2015

5 Tips for Using Social Media to Promote Your Next Event

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social media marketing for eventsIf you’ve ever been involved in planning a business conference, community event or workshop, you know the blood, sweat, and tears (literally) that go into ensuring that every detail is perfect for your guests and every “t” is dotted on the contracts. Just as it takes months of effort to coordinate planning your event, it takes the same attention to planning detail and time to create a thorough and well-thought out promotion plan to draw attendees. Unless you’ve been living in a hole for the past few years, your promotion plan should include a multi-channel approach, including utilizing your social media channels. You’d be a fool not to, based on some recent statistics compiled by the Pew Research Center:

  • 71% of online adults use Facebook
  • 23% of online adults use Twitter
  • 26% use Instagram
  • 28% use Pinterest
  • 28% use LinkedIn

We’ve seen some fantastic events promoted through social media—with incredibly positive results. The million dollar question is, though, how can your company achieve those same results at your next event? How can you use social media to make the attendance and energy at your next event over the top?

Use the #1 rule of marketing

Take ‘know your audience’ to heart. When you started your social media pages, you should have done research to determine where your target audience is (i.e. Pinterest, Facebook, etc.) Now is the time to use that information to your advantage; create a promotional schedule that uses multiple social media channels to reach your target audiences on the channel they’re using. Remember that you can’t post a million things and then leave your audience hanging; maintain a regular schedule of social media posts or hire a social media company that can.

Diversify

You have just a few seconds to catch your audience’s attention on social media; there are literally thousands of tweets and posts competing for their attention. Don’t just use the same event logo over and over. We’re not saying that you shouldn’t use your event logo in your posts; you need to build brand awareness. Just don’t overdo it! Use different images and videos in your posts and tweets, such as photos, animated GIFs, short videos, slide shows, etc.

Use teasers

Be creative and build anticipation before and during your event. Take pictures of fun parts of your event in advance, such as a dunk tank or chocolate fountain, and share them on social media. Include trivia questions about the event, or parts of the event, as part of your social media campaign. If you have speakers or entertainment acts at your event, share images of them or information about their presentations—and ask them to share those posts as well.

Network

peopleLeverage your connections. Ask partners or participating vendors to spread the word, and give them the images and posts to make that happen (the key is to make it easy for them). Create a hash tag for your event, include it in each event post, and ask your event goers to do so as well. Make sure your hash tag is original; you don’t want to use a hash tag that is already affiliated with another event or company. The result is a social media conversation that creates buzz before and during your event, and gets everyone ready for next year’s fun.

Don’t stop on the day of the event

Don’t let the magic stop on the day of your event. We know you’re busy, but you’re missing a golden opportunity to share the energy of your event via social media. Remember, that social media revolves around live, instant gratification—pictures and tweets after the event are yesterday’s news. Designate a staff member or volunteer to tweet or post photos throughout the day or days of your event. Ask your event participants to share their photos as well; part of using social media to your advantage is being comfortable with the fact that you can’t control all the social media buzz about your event, and embrace it. Save all the photos you have for future social media posts and marketing materials.

Don’t Listen to these Bad SEO Tips

search engine optimizationThe world of digital marketing is fraught with misconceptions and bad advice. We’ve found this to be true in almost every part of digital marketing; if we had a penny for every bad piece of social media marketing advice we’ve heard, we’d be buried in pennies. That penny pile would have nothing on search engine optimization, which is full of junk ideas and misunderstandings. The pile of pennies of SEO misconceptions would reach to the sky; that’s why we’ve tackled some of the worst SEO tips we’ve heard, and the truth behind them:

“SEO is dead.”

We’re getting really, really tired of this. SEO is not dead, it’s just changing. The days of keyword stuffing and buying links are gone, and has been replaced by SEO tactics centered around technical aspects and optimized content that gives your users, and the search engines, what they want the way they want it.

These new SEO tactics achieve results; we’ve seen a local flooring company increase their website traffic double in just four months because of search engine optimization. In 30 days, their unique visits increased 122% and hit an impressive increase of 200%. Website traffic is just a number unless you can convert those visits to customer interest. The flooring company receives form submissions every week from potential customers, with 60% of those visits stemming from their search engine optimization package.

“SEO is not technical; it’s just about writing optimized content.”

Don’t ignore this piece of advice, but put it into context. Optimized content, text written for optimal results on search engines, gives your business website a digital marketing advantage. However, technical SEO pushes that advantage over the edge and positions your website well on search engine results pages (SERPs). To maximize that investment, invest in an ongoing content marketing strategy, which produces fresh content relevant to your industry and your audience. Content marketing provides updated content to your customers and your search engines on a continual basis.

“Buying links gets you to the top of the search rankings.”

Buying links also gets you penalized by Google. It’s a black hat SEO tactic that you should never listen to. If you produce excellent content through content marketing, or have excellent content produced for you, you’ll earn those links without penalties.

“You don’t need SEO if you don’t sell products online.”

Completely false. Think back to the last time you were looking for a plumber, or a dentist, or carpeting. You went online and typed in “local plumbers,” right? Just because your company doesn’t sell products online, or have any interest in e-commerce, doesn’t mean that you don’t need SEO. Statistics don’t lie: 54% of Americans have substituted the Internet and local search for phone books (comScore), and a startling 95% of smartphone users have looked for local information (Source: The Mobile Movement Study, Google/Ipsos OTX MediaCT , Apr 2011). Making an affordable investment SEO technology means your company is on the list next time one of your local potential customers types in keywords that pertain to your business.

“SEO only works for national companies.”

No, no, and no! We’ve helped businesses of all shapes and sizes achieve local results—online exposure in front of potential customers in surrounding communities—with our search engine optimization technology. Local search engine optimization technology can get you in front of search engine listings in towns and cities within a 10, 20 or 50 mile radius. With more than 90% of users turning to search engines for information, local SEO technology—like KD Interactive’s—can get your business website in organic search engine listings using topics and keywords your audience searches for.

“One SEO firm is as good as the next.”

No. Like any other industry, you have to weed out the good from the bad. Be wary of outlandish promises and guarantees. Ask for references and testimonials of past successes; steer clear of firms that use black-hat SEO practices, such as keyword stuffing and buying backlinks. Ask your SEO firm to see their technology; a demo can give you the full picture of what you’re in for, and the SEO results you’ll achieve.

4 Sure-Fire Ways to Sabotage Your SEO Results

search engine optimization technologyAre you trying to drive more traffic to your website? Have you taken the words ‘optimized website’ to heart? Are you getting results? If not, it may be because you’re unintentionally sabotaging your own results. You’re not alone. The internet is full of websites that don’t reach their search engine optimization goals because they lose focus in four common areas.

Not thinking about your audience

When you’re trying to rank for the search engines, it’s tempting to focus solely on search engines. How can you make Google happy? What does Bing want that gets you to the top? Remember, search engines want to deliver user-focused content to search engine users. So focus on your customers. (Do you know who they are? If not, that should be your first step.) What are their pain points? Common questions they ask? Information they search for? Remember, what they are searching for is not just about your products, it’s answers to their questions, so don’t get too focused on you and your products either. Think of the process as a pizza restaurant with delivery. If you produce the delicious pizza (information) your customers want, then the delivery boy—search engines—becomes busy delivering your product to customers.

Being too worried about keywords

The days of keyword stuffing are over. In the ‘good ole days,’ your website’s ranking used to revolve around how many times you could put a keyword on one page. Google was looking for keyword density, and many companies responded with website pages full of a keyword and no valuable content for the customer.

That was then, this is now. Today’s search engines are looking for valuable content, and thin content stuffed with a keyword doesn’t cut it. In fact, keyword stuffing can get you penalized and destroy your search engine rankings. That doesn’t mean that keywords don’t count when trying to achieve SEO results; we’ll tell you how important they are, and how they are important in achieving results for our clients. What it does mean is that it’s up to you to deliver valuable content to your customers with keywords and relevant topics that your customers are looking for. To put it simply (and very generally): make your customers happy, make the search engines happy, get better ranking results. If you don’t think you have the expertise to craft that content, and create the perfect balance, contact experts in SEO writing that can. It’s a small investment that can pay big in the rankings.

Thinking you can do it all yourself

Optimizing your website with valuable content is half the equation (both when writing content for your new website and content marketing); technology is the other half. Local search engine optimization technology can get you in front of search engine listings in towns and cities within a 10, 20 or 50 mile radius. Even if you don’t sell products online, or have any interest in e-commerce, you need to integrate search engine optimization into your marketing strategy because local SEO technology—like KD Interactive’s—can get your business website in organic search engine listings using terms and the professional content your customers are searching for.

Not being selective about your SEO provider

A quality SEO technology firm can convert online users into customers, and get your business website at the top of search engine rankings in local markets. A sub-par SEO firm delivers promises that they can’t back up with testimonials or valuable metrics and statistics. For example: one of our clients, a flooring company, saw their website traffic double in just four months because of search engine optimization. In 30 days, their unique visits increased 122% and hit an impressive increase of 200%. Website traffic is just a number unless you can convert those visits to customer interest. The flooring company receives form submissions every week from potential customers, with 60% of those visits stemming from their search engine optimization package.

Shy away from companies that promise #1 rankings for almost no money; ask the company for testimonials and about the SEO tactics they use. You don’t want to get sucked into a gimmick with no results, or a company that uses SEO tactics that could get you penalized by search engines (i.e. buying backlinks, keyword stuffing, etc.) If you have any other questions about local SEO or want to see it in action, ask us. Breaking down the basics of SEO, and helping make sure that website optimization is working for you—and not against you—is what we do.