Monthly Archive: May 2019

0

17 Ways to Get More YouTube Views (Works GREAT In 2019)

sourced from: https://backlinko.com/get-youtube-views

In this post I’m going to show you how to get more views on YouTube.

In fact, these are the exact techniques that I used to grow my channel to 244.6K views per month.

Let’s dive right in.

1. Use “BOGY” Thumbnails
2. Copy This Proven Video Description Template
3. Alternate Playlist Layouts
4. Boost Your Video Title CTR
5. Get More “Suggested Video” Views
6. Use The “MVC Formula” For Video Tags
7. Share Videos On Quora, Reddit and Forums
8. Rank Your Videos in Google Search
9. Optimize Videos for Comments, Likes and Subscribes
10. Improve Your Channel’s “Session Time”
11. Optimize Your End Screen for Views
12. Master YouTube SEO Fundamentals
13. Use Eye-Catching Playlist Titles
14. Feature Your Videos On Your Blog
15. Share Video Clips On Social Media
16. Upload Videos When Your Audience is On YouTube
17. “The Card Bridge” Technique
Bonus #1: Get Featured On The YouTube Homepage
Bonus #2: Double Down On What Works
Bonus #3: The Community Tab Preview

1. Use “BOGY” Thumbnails

It’s no secret that your video thumbnail is HUGE.

In fact:

According to YouTube, 9 out of 10 of the most-viewed videos on YouTube use a custom thumbnail:

And YouTube themselves state that:

“Thumbnails are usually the first thing viewers see when they find one of your videos.”

The question is:

How do you create a thumbnail that stands out?

BOGY Thumbnails.

BOGY Thumbnails are thumbnails that use these four colors:

Blue
Orange
Green
Yellow

Why is this important?

Well, if you look around YouTube, you’ll notice that the site is mostly red, black and white.

And if your thumbnail also uses red, black and white… your video will blend in.

But when you use BOGY thumbnails, your videos stands out and grabs attention.

(Which makes people MUCH more likely to click)

For example, I use green as the main color in my thumbnails:

This is partly for branding reasons (green is the main color on my blog and YouTube channel).

But it’s also to stand out on the YouTube platform:

How about another example?

The Bright Side Channel (which has 19 million subscribers) uses yellow, orange, blue and purple in most of their thumbnails:

Of course, you can use a little bit of red, white and black in your thumbnail.

You just don’t want to make them your main thumbnail color.

For example, I use some black and white in this thumbnail.

But 80%+ of that thumbnail is green.

And now it’s time for…

2. Copy This Proven Video Description Template

YouTube has confirmed that your video descriptions “let YouTube’s algorithms know what your videos are all about”.

With that, I have some good news:

I recently developed a YouTube description template that works GREAT.

Here it is:

Now I’ll break down each section in detail.

First, you have the Strong Intro.

The first few lines of your description are SUPER important.

Specifically, you want to include your target keyword once in the first 1-2 sentences.

That’s because YouTube puts more weight on keywords early on in your description.

So make sure to mention your target keyword in the beginning of your description.

Here’s an example from my channel:

You also want to sell your video.

Why?

The first few lines of your description show up in YouTube search:

And if that snippet is super compelling, more people will click on your result:

Plus, some people even read your description after they land on your video page.

So it’s important that the content above “Show more” really sells your video.

Next, you have the 150-word outline.

All you need to do here is outline what someone will learn from your video.

And don’t be afraid to get into the nitty-gritty details here. In fact, I recommend writing AT LEAST 150 words here.

That way, YouTube can fully understand what your video covers.

For example, check out this description from one of my videos:

It’s 233 total words.

And that thorough description has helped my video rack up 299,173 views to date:

Finally, you have your description links.

I actually got this tip from YouTube themselves:

The goal here is to send people to your website and social media channels.

I’m most active on Twitter, so I only include a link to my Twitter profile:

But there’s nothing wrong with linking to several different sites that you’re active on.

And if you want to get more subscribers, I recommend adding a call-to-action to subscribe here too:

Which leads us to…

3. Alternate Playlist Layouts

If you’re like most people, you include a ton of playlists on your channel page.

(Which is smart)

Well, I recently discovered a simple way to get MORE people to watch your playlists:

Alternate vertical and horizontal playlist layouts.

Here’s an example from my channel:

Why is this important?

If you only use one playlist layout, your playlists don’t stand out from one another:

But when you alternate layouts, each playlist really stands out:

To change layouts, head over to your channel page. And hit “Customize Channel”.

Then, click on the little pencil icon next to one of your playlists:

And choose the layout:

Then, alternate between “vertical lists” and “horizontal layouts” for each playlist.

Simple. Yet effective.

4. Boost Your Video Title CTR

Your title is a BIG part of your video’s success.

In fact, YouTube’s internal data has confirmed that your title can make or break your entire video:

With that, here’s exactly how to write video titles that get tons of clicks:

First, add brackets and parentheses to the end of your title.

An industry study by HubSpot found that adding brackets to a title increased clicks by 33%:

To be fair:

This study looked at blog post titles.

But I’ve found that the same rule applies to YouTube videos.

For example, this video from my channel has 299,173 views:

And the “[New Checklist]” at the end of my title is a big part of that video’s success:

Next, use a number in your title.

This number can be:

The number of tips or strategies you’re going to cover
The current year
Number of steps in a how-to video
The amount of weight someone lost (or lifted)

Or pretty much any number that makes sense for your video.

For example, here’s a video on my channel about keyword research:

My original title was just “Advanced Keyword Research Tutorial”.

That title is pretty flat.

So I decided to add “5-Step Blueprint” to the end of my title:

Which has helped that video rack up over 100k views so far:

Finally, use titles that are between 40-50 characters:

A study by Justin Briggs discovered that videos with titles less than 50 characters ranked best in YouTube search:

5. Get More “Suggested Video” Views

Over the last few years I’ve studied dozens of YouTube channels.

And I’ve noticed one consistent pattern:

Successful channels get lots of views from Suggested Video.

As a reminder, “Suggested Videos” are videos that YouTube promotes next to the video you’re watching:

And as it turns out, Suggested Video can bring in MORE views than YouTube search.

For example, my channel gets 34.8% of its views from SEO…

…and 38.2% from Suggested Video:

So:

How can you get more views from Suggested Video?

Use the same tags as your competitors.

In fact, YouTube has stated that they use metadata (like your title, description and tags) for Suggested Video rankings.

So when your tags match the tags in a popular video, you have a good chance of showing up next to that video:

Here’s a video that walks you through this entire process in detail:

Speaking of tags…

6. Use The “MVC Formula” For Video Tags

You already know that tags are important for video SEO.

That’s because YouTube uses tags to understand your video’s topic.

In fact, when we analyzed 1+ million YouTube videos, we found that YouTube video tags correlated with rankings:

Question is:

How do you use tags the right way?

The MVC Formula.

Here’s how it looks:

The MVC stands for: “Main Keyword”, “Variations” and “Category”.

I’ll break this down with a real-life example…

First, you have “Main Keyword”.

This is self-explanatory.

You want to use your main keyword as your first or second tag.

For example, my target keyword for this video is: “link building”.

So I made that exact phrase my first tag:

Next, we’ve got “Variations”.

Here’s where you sprinkle in a few variations of your main keyword.

For example, in my link building video, I used a few variations of that term:

Finally, include 1-2 tags that describe your video’s overall category.

These broad tags are designed to help YouTube understand your video’s overall topic and category.

For example, in my video, I included three broad tags: “SEO”, “online marketing” and “digital marketing”.

7. Share Videos On Quora, Reddit and Forums

Online communities are GREAT places to promote your YouTube videos.

That’s because people on these communities have burning questions…

…questions that your video can answer.

For example, let’s say that you see someone asking this question on Reddit:

Well, if you had a video that talked about frozen Paleo meals, you could link to it in that thread.

In fact, I used this exact approach to promote one of my videos on Quora:

Which helped my brand new video get a handful of high-quality views.

8. Rank Your Videos in Google Search

Ranking your videos in Google can lead to LOTS of extra views.

In fact, Google sends my videos 8,396 views per month:

So:

How do you get your videos to show up in Google?

Well, it’s not all about ranking #1 in YouTube.

In fact, a study by Stone Temple Consulting found that 55.2% of YouTube videos ranking in Google were different than the top videos ranking in YouTube’s search results.

For example, if you search for “backhand drills” in YouTube, this video is shown at the top:

But when you search for that same keyword in Google, that video is nowhere to be found

With that, here’s how to boost your video’s chances of ranking in Google:

First, say your keyword out loud in your video.

For example, a while back I published this SEO tutorial video on my channel:

And I made sure to actually say the exact phrase “SEO Tutorial” four times in that video:

Which is one of the main reasons it ranks in the top 3 for that term:

Second, upload a transcript of your video to YouTube.

That way, Google can understand 100% of the content in your video.

Sure enough, I made sure to get a professional transcription for my SEO tutorial video.

9. Optimize Videos for Comments, Likes and Subscribes

YouTube wants to see that people ENGAGE with your video.

In fact, I recently conducted a YouTube search engine ranking factors study:

And we found a significant correlation between ranking in YouTube and user engagement.

Specifically, we found that comments:

Likes:

And subscribes:

All correlated with rankings in YouTube search.

What’s the best way to get more engagement on your videos?

It’s simple: ask people to engage with your video.

For example, let’s look at this video from my channel:

At the end of my video I ask people to leave a comment:

And subscribe:

Which has helped that video rack up 4,348 comments:

11,500 subscribers:

And 396,000 total views:

10. Improve Your Channel’s “Session Time”

Audience retention? Important.

Watch Time? VERY important.

But neither of these two metrics are close to session time.

I’ll explain…

Session Time (also known as “Session Watch Time”) is the total amount of time someone spends on YouTube after watching your video.

And it’s one metric that YouTube cares A LOT about. In fact, YouTube has said:

“The goals of YouTube’s search and discovery system are twofold: to help viewers find the videos they want to watch, and to maximize long-term viewer engagement…”

So if someone watches your video and then leaves YouTube, that’s going to hurt your channel’s Session Time:

But if that person stays on YouTube, your Session Time is going to increase:

And the best way to improve your Session Time?

Promote your BEST videos on your channel page.

That way, you’re showing people videos that will keep them watching.

For example, I show off my best videos at the top of my channel page (inside of playlists):

Evan Carmichael even replaced his traditional channel trailer with one of his popular videos:

As it turns out, there’s another easy way to boost your Session Time.

Which leads us to…

11. Optimize Your End Screen for Views

Here’s how to get extra views (and Session Watch Time) using your end screen:

First, pick a popular video from your channel.

To do this, head over to the YouTube Studio and find a video that generated lots of views over the last 90 days:

Next, find a video from your channel that someone would want to watch AFTER they finish watching your popular video.

For example, this video was one of my top 10 videos over the last 90 days:

So I asked myself:

“What does someone that just learned about keyword research want to learn about next?”

How to use those keywords in their content.

Luckily, I published a video on that exact topic a few months earlier:

Finally, link to that video in your End Screen:

And because your “Next Video” is EXACTLY what someone wants to see, they’re super likely to watch it.

12. Master YouTube SEO Fundamentals

If you want to get more views on YouTube, you need to learn as much as you can about YouTube SEO.

Specifically, you want to master SEO basics like:

Keyword research for videos
Optimizing titles, descriptions and tags
Improving Audience Retention and Watch Time
YouTube engagement signals

And if you want a crash course on SEO for YouTube, I recommend watching this entire video:

13. Use Eye-Catching Playlist Titles

I used to name my playlists with whatever word popped into my head first.

For example, one of my first playlists was called “Advanced SEO Strategies”:

Not a horrible name. But not super compelling either.

So I added “and Case Studies” to make the title more interesting:

And I’ve applied this same rule to all of my playlist titles.

For example, one of my most popular playlists is called “How to Get Higher Google Rankings”:

My original title for that playlist was: “SEO Tips and Strategies”.

But I knew that my audience wants to learn “how to get higher Google rankings”.

So I made my playlist title that exact outcome.

14. Feature Your Videos On Your Blog

You might have noticed that I’ve embedded quite a few of my YouTube videos in this post.

And there’s a good reason for that:

These embedded videos lead to a ton of high-quality views.

Not only do these embeds help you get more views, but they can also help your videos rank higher in YouTube’s search results.

An industry study found that #1 ranking videos have 78% more links and embeds than videos that rank #2 or below:

Pretty cool.

15. Share Video Clips On Social Media

Back in the day I’d share my entire YouTube video on social media:

And sure, this led to a handful of views.

But not as many as I wanted.

That’s when I realized something:

Facebook, Twitter and other social media sites want to keep people on their platforms.

(Yup, just like YouTube)

And when you post a link to your YouTube video, their algorithms are going to hide your post from your followers.

So:

What’s the solution?

Upload a clip from your YouTube video as native video.

Here’s an example:

Because my clip was native to Facebook, it was promoted around the platform like crazy.

(Which led to 23k views on my post)

And once you post the clip, link to the full video as the first comment:

That way, people that enjoyed your clip can easily find the full video on YouTube.

16. Upload Videos When Your Audience is On YouTube

What’s the best time to upload a video on YouTube?

Is it Tuesday at 3pm?

How about Saturday at 6am?

The real answer: when your subscribers are on YouTube.

Unfortunately, YouTube doesn’t tell you when most of your subscribers are online.

So I recommend testing a few different days and times to see what works best for your channel.

You can even use a tool like VidIQ to analyze your channel for the best times to post:

17. “The Card Bridge” Technique

This is an easy way to boost your Session Time and views.

Here’s how it works:

First, look at the audience retention report for one of your videos.

Here’s an example from my channel:

As you can see, this video has a massive retention drop at 6:16.

Next, have a card appear at that time.

(That’s “The Bridge”)

And that card sends people to another video on your channel at the exact moment they would have clicked away:

Nice.

Bonus #1: Get Featured On The YouTube Homepage

The YouTube homepage can be a GREAT source of views.

(Especially for new videos)

For example, look at the traffic sources to this video the week after it went live:

39.4% of all of my views came from “Browse Features”.

(Most of which are views from the YouTube homepage)

And getting on the homepage led to 3,097 views in my video’s first week.

Not bad.

As you probably know, your YouTube homepage is highly personalized.

So when I say “get featured on the homepage”, I’m talking about getting on the homepage for users that are signed in.

With that, here are two ways to boost the odds that your video will appear on people’s homepages:

First, promote your video in the first 48 hours after it goes live.

YouTube’s homepage algorithm tends to feature videos that have two things going for them:

They’re new
They’re popular

And when you get lots of eyeballs on your new video, YouTube will happily feature it on their homepage.

For example, I promote my new videos on social media:

And to my newsletter subscribers:

Which helps push lots of people to my brand new content on day 1:

Second, boost your total YouTube subscriber count.

I’ve noticed that YouTube’s homepage tends to feature content from channels that you’re already subscribed to.

(Which makes sense)

So the more subscribers you have, the more views you’ll get from the homepage.

Bonus #2: Double Down On What Works

In other words:

Find videos from your channel with above-average audience retention.
Use what worked in future videos.

How about an example?

This video from my channel was my first successful video:

(Most of my other early videos completely flopped)

So I decided to apply what worked in this video to my future videos.

And it worked!

Because I doubled down on what was already working, I was able to grow my channel in record time:

Specifically, I looked for spots in my video where my audience retention was higher than average:

For example, I noticed a big retention spike at 3:51:

3:51 laid out the steps for one of the strategies in my video:

So I decided to show steps in text form in all of my future videos:

Bonus #3: The Community Tab Preview

This is an easy way to get your subscribers PUMPED about your next video.

Here’s how to do it:

First, publish a post about your upcoming video in your community tab.

This can be a sneak preview shot:

A quiz:

Or anything that builds anticipation for your video:

Either way, your community post makes people look forward to your upcoming video.

(Which means they’ll be MUCH more likely to watch it when it goes live)

Now It’s Your Turn

Now I’d like to hear what you have to say:

Which strategy from today’s post are you ready to try first?

Are you going to use BOGY Thumbnails?

Or

Maybe you’re ready to preview videos in your Community Tab.

Either way, let me know by leaving a comment below right now.

The post 17 Ways to Get More YouTube Views (Works GREAT In 2019) appeared first on Backlinko.

0

How I Gain 1,260 Instagram Followers Per Week

sourced from: https://neilpatel.com/blog/instagram-followers/

Do you want to be instafamous?

Well, who doesn’t?

Over the last few months, I’ve been running numerous Instagram experiments and I’ve finally figured out how to grow my Instagram following.

My Neil Patel account has been growing by 1,260 followers per week.

And I know what you are thinking… Neil, you are already well known, this can’t be replicated by anyone else.

Right?

Well, not only did we test this strategy out on my profile, but we also did it on 2 other profiles.

It works no matter what industry you are in. Heck, it works even better if you aren’t in B2B like me.

Just look at Dhavalilama. His likes per image have been growing by just using the heart trick, which I will explain in a bit, and he isn’t using my whole strategy. :/

So, how do you gain more Instagram followers each week without spending money?

Tip #1: Instagram wants long videos

You’ve heard everyone say that you need to upload videos. Social networks like Instagram aren’t just competing with other social networks, they are competing with traditional media and even companies like Netflix for your attention.

If you upload videos, you’ll find that you’ll get more engagement than if you just upload images.

But the key isn’t to just upload any video… it ideally needs to be engaging and long.

By long I am not talking about a 60-second video, I’m talking minutes. You’ll have to leverage IGTV for this, but that’s what they want as not enough people are using that feature.

Hence, if you use IGTV, they’ll push your video more.

That way when someone is watching a 5-minute video you just posted, they’ll be able to watch the first 60 seconds on their feed and then they’ll be pushed over to IGTV.

All you have to do is upload the video to IGTV and select the “post a preview” option.

What this does is, it uploads the video to IGTV and then also promotes the video through your feed.

Just look at this video that I only posted on IGTV.

It had 236 views before writing this blog post.

When I posted that video, I had 9,078 followers, which means I had an engagement rate of 2.59%.

Now if you look at this video that I posted…

It had 2,971 views before writing this blog post.

When I posted that video I had 21,047 followers, which means I had an engagement rate of 14.11%.

What’s crazy is, that one simple change increased my video engagement by 444%.

Tip #2: Ask and you will receive

Instagram’s algorithm is simple… the more views and likes your videos and images receive, the more people will see them, which increases engagement and your follower count over time.

There’s not too much more to the algorithm.

Of course, they are looking at things like what percentage of your followers actually engage… but still, the algorithm from a conceptual standpoint is simple.

So, have you thought about asking for people to “like” your image?

Now with Instagram, people are using it via their cell phone so it’s more of a “double tap” than a like… but you get the point.

On average, when I post an image on Instagram I can generate 945.6 likes.

Here’s an example of one of those images:

And as you can see from the engagement, that one did better than most of my images as it has over 1,000 likes.

Plus, the messaging resonates with a lot of people.

But here is one that is simple…

I just asked people to “double tap” if they need to improve their video skills.

It didn’t take much creativity to come up with that image and it received 1,441 likes. In other words, it produced 51.96% more engagement.

You should give it a try… I tend to use this tactic a few times a month and it works really well.

Just be careful though, if you use it every day or every week, people will get sick of it and it will stop working. Hence, I only use it a few times a month max.

Tip #3: Go live

Did I already mention that Instagram is competing with television networks and Netflix?

Because of that, what kind of content do you think they want more of?

Well, yes they want more video content, but we already talked about that.

They want more live content.

Think… reality TV.

Now the live content you produce doesn’t have to be like Keeping up with the Kardashians… they just want live content that people are looking forward to viewing.

You know how you will tune into shows like American Idol or the latest soccer or football match because it’s live and you want to see what’s happening in real time? That’s the effect Instagram is hoping for with live content.

Now, when you go live, Instagram is promoting it heavily so you’ll get more viewers. It doesn’t matter what you talk about… they just want to see more people go live.

Every time I go live, I am able to get at least 1,000 views. Just look at the live I just did…

In the first 6 hours, it’s already received 718 views and I did this live session on a Sunday during non-peak hours. Within the first 24 hours, it will easily surpass 1000 views.

In other words, go live! It’s a simple and quick way to grow your following count. Ideally, you should be going live on a weekly basis.

Heck, you can’t go live too much… feel free to go live daily.

Tip #4: Respond to comments

This one is simple, but no one really does it.

Social networks are supposed to be social. That means you should participate.

And no, I am not talking about just liking other images and viewing videos. I’m talking about engaging with people and talking to them.

So, when you like something that someone else posts, leave a comment.

And when someone leaves a comment on one of your posts… what do you think you should do?

You should respond to them with a comment.

Now, let’s look at some of my posts for a minute. You’ll see decent engagement, but more so, you’ll see me being very active.

Just look at all of my responses.

By engaging with people, you’re more likely to build a relationship with these individuals, which makes it more likely that they will back and continually engage with your posts.

Tip #5: The heart trick

Alright, are you ready for the heart trick? You know, the one Dhavalilama has been using to boost his like count by 300%.

The concept is simple, but it will take a bit of finesse to implement.

A part of Instagram’s algorithm is how much engagement you get from other Instagram users within the first hour of you posting anything.

Now, I’ve done a lot of tests with this… if you can get Instagram users who have more followers than you to like your image or video when it first goes live you’ll find that your content is much more likely to show up on the discovery page.

From a lot of testing, here’s what seems to be the most effective:

Get people with larger following accounts to like your image or video within the first hour it comes out.
Ask them to not like anything else within that hour. We’ve found that if they like too many images or videos it doesn’t work.
And if they are feeling extra generous, have them leave a comment.

The heart trick isn’t that complex, but it is hard to implement because you have to convince users who are more popular than you to like your content right when you publish.

And ideally, you need 6 people who have large accounts (the bigger the better), for this to work extremely well.

Tip #6: Create multiple stories each day

What do Tai Lopez, Gary Vaynerchuk, and Grant Cardone have in common?

Well, other than the fact that they all have over a million Instagram followers…

They all post a ton of stories per day.

And when I mean a ton, sometimes they are posting over 20 stories a day… literally.

The more stories you post, the more engagement you’ll create, which will lead to more followers.

Just look at the stats from the stories I just posted:

I can generate over 1,000 views within 8 hours of posting a story and generally in the range of 1,600 to 2,000 views within 24 hours.

The same story 23 hours later received 1870 views.

Here are some things to keep in mind if you want to maximize stories:

Don’t post all of your stories at once, spread them out throughout the day. This will cause people to keep coming back and engaging with your profile.
Use a combination of both images and videos within your stories. Overall, you’ll find that videos create more engagement.
The more stories you publish, the better off you are.
Add polls to your stories, this also helps boost engagement.

Tip #7: Quality matters

Have you noticed that some images get more likes than others? Or certain videos get more engagement?

Instagram is a visual social network. So the visual part is important… you want your images and videos to look great no matter what.

Now, they don’t have to be perfect, but you do want to make sure you are posting images that people enjoy.

Here’s what I mean…

When you look at my profile, you’ll see a ton of images of me that contain quotes.

Some of those images perform really well, while others don’t. For example, every time I post a quote using this image template…

It gets 21.4% less engagement then when I use this template…

Keep track of what your followers like and don’t like. Post more of what they like and stop posting the stuff that has low engagement.

Tip #8: Test, test, test

Speaking of posting more of what your followers like and less of what they don’t, you need to constantly test.

Even though quality matters, when you are testing you shouldn’t aim for perfection. Just aim for speed.

Once you find something that people like, do more of it.

For example, I ask people to double tap as I talked about in tip number 2 because I learned it through testing.

Here are some other things I’ve learned through testing:

Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication – people prefer clean images that are simple.
Use bright colors – images that are darker, such as night photography don’t perform as well.
Switch things up – if you do the same thing every week you’ll find your engagement starting to drop.
People want to get to know you – they don’t want to get to know the Photoshop version of you. Be realistic and personal. Connect with your followers.
Filters don’t matter – don’t waste too much time modifying or adjusting your images. Little things like filters don’t make the biggest difference.
Hashtags aren’t game changing – I know everyone says you have to use hashtags and you should here and there… but they aren’t game-changing. So don’t spam and use 20 hashtags per image you post. And when you do use them, pick relevant and popular ones. You can use Ubersuggest to figure out what keywords are popular.
Use Instagram analytics – it tells you when your followers are online so you know when to post. If you post when they are online you’ll get much more engagement.

A good example of a test I’ve run is when I post on my feed. As you can see from my stats…

My followers are most likely to be on Instagram at 9am. So I try to post around that time, which has helped me get 8.41% more likes per image.

Every little bit adds up!

Conclusion

You don’t have to spend money on ads to grow your Instagram following. If you follow the tips above, you’ll do well and find that you can grow your weekly following count by over 1,000 net new followers each week.

Now, I know you may not want to use Instagram because it doesn’t have your “ideal” audience, but you can drive conversions from Instagram.

For example, when I went live on Instagram and I told the audience to check out my ad agency Neil Patel Digital, I was able to generate 2 leads.

Neither of the leads were ideal customers, but it is a numbers game. If I continually do it I will be able to generate clients.

In the past, I have closed 3 deals from Instagram… one paid $120,000, the other paid $1,000,000, and the last paid $300,000.

They were all consulting arrangements, so I had substantial costs associated with the revenue, but it shows that Instagram does work.

Heck, if it didn’t, I wouldn’t be back on Instagram again (this is my 3rd profile, I no longer use the other 2).

You can also use the swipe up feature to drive people to your site and this will help you generate leads and sales.

So, what do you think about Instagram? Are you using it on a daily basis?

The post How I Gain 1,260 Instagram Followers Per Week appeared first on Neil Patel.

0

17 Charts That Show Where Social Media is Heading

sourced from: https://neilpatel.com/blog/social-media-trends/

You already know it’s harder to get traffic from the social web unless you spend money on ads.

There’s nothing new with that fact… just look at the graph above: It breaks down how the average number of social shares per blog post has been dying year over year.

But the reality is you can’t ignore platforms like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, YouTube or any other new contender that comes out and gains traction.

These social sites command so much traffic, that we have no choice but to be on them.

Just look at the Similar Web numbers for Facebook… they get an estimated 19.2 billion visits a month.

That’s ridiculous! And it’s not just Facebook either… according to Similar Web, all of the big platforms get tons of traffic:

LinkedIn – 917 million visitors a month
Twitter – 3.62 billion visitors a month
YouTube – 22.77 billion visitors a month
Pinterest – 722 million visitors a month
Instagram – 2.86 billion visitors a month

In other words, whether you like their algorithm tweaks or not, you have no choice but to be on these platforms as they attract so many eyeballs.

So, what should you do with your organic social reach? How should you combat their algorithms so you can generate a positive ROI as their ad prices keep going up?

Well, I surveyed 183 companies that generate at least 5 million dollars in revenue a year all the way up to $1.7 billion to show you where social media is headed and what you should do to succeed in the landscape.

Let’s dive into the data…

Expect less traffic from the social web, even if you pay for it

Look at the graph below. What do you see?

Since 2015, the amount of shares a blog post receives from the social web has been declining. One of the large reasons for social sites to clamp down on organic reach is that that makes it so you need to spend money to get the reach that you were once used to and relied upon to generate traffic.

Now let’s look at the percentage of digital ad spend going towards social media sites.

Over time it has increased, and you’ll notice that things really started to ramp up in 2016.

An interesting fact is that in the United States during mid-2017, Facebook had more advertisers than inventory. In other words, the demand was higher than the supply which caused CPM and CPC rates to increase.

But similar to the game of cat and mouse SEOs play with Google, marketers also play that game with social networks. In recent years, marketers have figured out how to reverse the trend of their dying organic reach.

2017 was a low point, but since then marketers have figured out a way to boost organic social traffic.

It won’t last forever… but can you guess how?

Don’t expect your employees to help

Well, it’s not by asking your employees to share your content.

Roughly 74% of the companies we surveyed asked their employees to share their content. Might as well get those extra likes and comments, right?

I know I used to do it.

But then I stopped because the majority of my employees didn’t want to share the content. And it’s not just my companies, other companies experienced the same thing.

In other words, the first few times you ask your team members to share, they’ll do it. After a while, they’ll ignore you.

So how are marketers boosting their organic reach?

You have to use chatbots

Here’s how much time companies are spending on each form of social media content.

As you can see, everyone loves posting images and text-based updates because they are easy to post.

But they don’t produce the best engagement. It’s actually live video and other forms of video.

Social platforms are trying to compete with television networks and they are even competing with platforms like Netflix.

So, if you want the most engagement you have to feed into their goals. If you start producing live video or even recorded video, you’ll find that you can boost your engagement. What this will do is get more of your followers engaged so when you post other forms of content they’ll be a higher probability that the content will be seen.

The other reason videos work so well is because they keep people on these social platforms versus driving people back to your site.

But of course, you want your followers to go back to your site… and you can do that through chatbots.

As you can see, 41% of the companies reported that chatbots (also knowns as messenger bots for social sites) provided their biggest traffic gains.

In other words, if you want to drive people from social sites like Facebook, you’ll have to start using messenger bots like Mobile Monkey.

The chances are you aren’t using messenger bots yet, but they are super effective. Just follow this guide and it will walk you through setting them up.

Now, not every social network has messenger bots, but over time you’ll see this change.

You’ll have to start expanding globally

I’ve been blogging a lot about global expansion from an SEO perspective, but the same goes from a social media perspective as well.

The chart above clearly shows how people are now getting traffic from regions where English wasn’t the native language.

And as companies noticed that trend, they also started posting their social content in multiple languages.

You’ll see a trend of this continuing over the next few years in which companies will be leveraging globalization as social marketing campaigns in non-English speaking countries in most cases is more profitable.

If you want the most out of your organic social traffic and paid ads you should consider posting content in multiple languages.

Some social networks like Facebook give great targeting options where you can pick which regions you want to show your content in.

For other platforms like Twitter and Instagram, this doesn’t exist yet.

When you also look at it from an advertising perspective, ads are expensive in regions like the United States, Japan, Canada, United Kingdom, Germany… but they aren’t as costly in most parts of Latin America and Asia.

Now let’s look at social media from a sales perspective.

Here’s how to maximize your social media revenue

Similar to content marketing, don’t expect social media visitors to convert right when they land on your site.

On average, a social media visitor will convert after 3 visits.

That means you are going to have to focus on getting people to continue to come back to your site if you want more sales.

In other words, you’ll have to play the long game.

The simplest way to do this is to remarket your social visitors. But there are other solutions as well that you aren’t currently using.

You can use a combination of the methods above. You’ll find that one won’t be enough and you’ll have to combine a handful of methods, including SMS.

You’re probably not using SMS marketing yet, but did you know that when I send SMS messages my response rates are 68%?!

That’s crazy high!

I’m not talking about opens, I am talking about responses!

For email, you can use tools like Hello Bar and for push notifications, you can use tools like Subscribers.

But there are multiple ways to boost your sales from social media, including focusing on specific content types.

Did you know that if you leverage chatbots (messenger bots) and post video-based content you’ll generate more sales on average than if you just posted status updates?

I know that sounds counterintuitive as it is easier to drive people to your site using status updates than to create a video, but you have to consider that social algorithms favor video.

You can also optimize your sales by picking specific social networks

Sales is a complicated formula. There’s more to growing your revenue than just focusing on specific types of content social media sites love and optimizing your landing pages.

To get a full picture, you also have to look at the first touch and last touch sales.

First touch sales are the traffic source that people first found you from. They don’t necessarily convert right then and there, but it’s the way they first found you.

It’s no shocker, but Facebook is the leader when it comes to first touch sales.

Now let’s look at last touch sales, which is where a visitor comes from right before they convert. Remember, someone may have found your site from Facebook, but they may not convert right away.

Sure, Facebook is still the winner, but YouTube is a close second and, shockingly, WhatsApp is in 3rd place.

It makes sense as texting has an extremely high open and click rate. I know you aren’t using WhatsApp for your business yet because that’s what the data shows, but you should check out their business API.

Conclusion

Over the upcoming years, you can assume social algorithms are going to get tougher from both an organic and paid perspective.

Social media companies are facing heavy governmental pressure due to fake news, privacy concerns, and issues related to political campaigns.

But that doesn’t mean you can ignore the social web or stop using it. It’s not dying and it is here to stay.

The data shows social media is on the rise. Sure, these sites aren’t growing at a rapid pace anymore but that’s due to the majority of the world already being on one of these platforms if not a few of them.

They are effective because people trust what they see on these sites and that should continually increase as they fix issues like fake news.

As long as you follow the tips above, you’ll be able to maximize your social media traffic and revenue even when the algorithms change in ways that don’t favor you.

So how are you maximizing your social media traffic?

PS: If you want to know where content marketing is heading, check this out.

The post 17 Charts That Show Where Social Media is Heading appeared first on Neil Patel.

0

6 PPC Tactics for Account-Based Marketing Campaigns

sourced from: https://conversionxl.com/blog/ppc-account-based-marketing/

PPC campaigns continue to become increasingly well-targeted. More and more companies are using tactics like single-keyword ad groups (SKAGs) and single-product ad groups (SPAGs).

While those tactics may have differentiated your campaigns in the past, they no longer do (or won’t soon). One way to stand out is to go beyond keyword targeting and create PPC campaigns for specific targets—an account-based marketing (ABM) strategy.

This post gives you six tactics to help execute PPC campaigns as part of an ABM strategy. You can’t focus on paid channels alone, however. Other tactics that support paid campaigns—like company-specific content and strong social media profiles—are equally vital.

To get started, you first have to balance your ABM efforts with the always-on campaigns that drive consistent growth.

The Quota-Campaign approach

You can’t execute a smart, super-personalized ABM PPC campaign without first making sure your team is hitting their minimum quotas.

ABM campaigns dedicate resources and time toward only a few prospects, and enterprise-level leads often have long sales cycles. That makes an ABM-only approach risky. So how do you balance the allocation of resources between ABM and traditional campaigns?

The Quota-Campaign approach is one solution. The Quota-Campaign approach establishes minimum output levels while allotting the balance of time to projects—like ABM campaigns.

Your Quota project focuses on weekly (or monthly) minimums, like relaunching brand campaigns or optimizing existing product-focused campaigns. Once quotas maintain an undercurrent of growth, you can test more freely.

This is where Campaign projects (i.e. PPC for ABM) begin. These campaigns periodically spike growth by deploying tactics outlined below. Regardless of tactic, however, all ABM PPC campaigns start with one thing: ad creative and supporting content.

Ad creative and content for ABM PPC campaigns

With account-based content, you’re usually cutting out search engines and proactively reaching out to prospects. Content for paid advertising campaigns—ad copy, images, landing pages, downloadables, etc.—is all personalized for singular brands. (Or, at the very least, narrowly targeted verticals.)

So what content is essential to run an ABM-focused paid campaign? Below (on the right) are just a few examples of account-based content, most of which can be used in PPC campaigns. (There are more specific examples further below.)

ABM tries to surround singular targets with more content. (Image source)

The key is to customize content for specific targets and channels (e.g. Google Ads, Facebook retargeting). That task can quickly become expensive. To make content creation more sustainable:

Think of content production in terms of topics (e.g. Trends in Industry X), not outcomes (e.g. a blog post). You can repackage variants of the same information for multiple channels (blog, whitepaper, video, etc.). Create industry-specific (rather than company-specific) downloadables that can be lightly redesigned for multiple targets.Translate company research into competitive research—research on four prospects’ PPC campaigns, for example, can be offered to each as competitive research on the other three.

Ultimately, the array of offers and offer timing require the support of multiple channels. PPC campaigns for ABM don’t work well in isolation.

With that in mind, a few tactics detailed below have important supporting roles, even though they’re not “PPC” or “ABM” tactics per se. Each helps integrate PPC campaigns with a multi-channel ABM strategy.

1. Customer Match In Google Ads

As the Google Ads Support Center explains:

Customer Match lets you use your online and offline data to reach and re-engage with your customers across Search, Shopping, Gmail, and YouTube.

With ABM campaigns, this offline data (like prospect/lead information) can help you customize your ABM ads. Ideally, you’ll be using some form of lead management tool to keep track of how far your prospects have moved through your ABM funnel.

With Customer Match, you can target users based on their Google accounts (if you have their information), so only your ideal ABM prospect list sees your ads.

That’s what you call highly targeted. (Image source)

To set up Customer Match in Google Ads:

Create a list in Google Ads of your ABM prospect list.Upload the data file containing user contact info.Create or update your new custom ABM ad campaign.Now, when these users are signed into their Google account, they see your ads.

And this is only getting started with targeted PPC campaigns for your ABM strategy.

2. Similar Audiences in Google Ads

Like their Facebook counterparts (Lookalike Audiences), Similar Audiences in Google Ads allow you to scale your Customer Match audiences by entrusting Google to identify similar users (potentially from the same company) to add to your list.

(Image source)

Similar Audiences let you gently expand your audience while ensuring it’s visible only to relevant eyes. Just be cautious that your ABM strategy doesn’t devolve into an old-fashioned spray-and-pray campaign.

Still, if you’re targeting a narrow vertical rather than a specific company (or don’t have the data for a true company- or target-specific ABM campaign), Similar Audiences can be useful.

Keep in mind, though, that just like Lookalike Audiences, you need at least 1,000 users in your Customer Match Audience to start scaling.

3. Radius Targeting in Google Ads

Radius Targeting in Google Ads is a cheeky way to get your ABM prospects to engage with your ads during work hours (when business decisions tend to be made).

If you know the address of your target company’s office (or simply Google it), you can isolate the geolocation of your ads to the radius of that company’s property.

This eliminates wasteful spend in siloed ABM campaigns and also enables you to focus your ad copy on the exact audience you’re targeting. If your highest value prospect company has one location, there’s no need to target an ABM Google Ads campaign to the entire city.

4. Promotion of account-based content via social media

Social media may be the most powerful ABM channel. Both paid and organic strategies engage directly with the decision-makers of the companies you’re targeting.

LinkedIn is the king of social media platforms for ABM. Success, however, is not just about running ads—it’s about building an authoritative presence that helps build a relationship with potential buyers after you capture their initial interest with, for example, a promoted post.

How do organic efforts connect to paid social campaigns? Let’s take a look at a brief ABM social promotion campaign that we ran recently.

First, we started off with a list of software companies we thought were a good fit for our agency—ideal prospects. We then created content just for them, based on the value they could instantly take home.

[This post contains video, click to play]

We decided to create a series of hyper-personalized videos that we called “Funnel Fixers.” Each was tailored to their specific needs and their brand and included:

Overall SERP analysis for their primary keywords;Overview of their competitor ads;Analysis of their ad copy;Analysis of their landing pages and forms;Prescriptive suggestions based on our findings;Potential competitor analysis (1–3 examples per video).

To promote these videos across our paid social channels, we cut smaller, bite-sized snippets out of the original videos and promoted YouTube links across our branded channels on LinkedIn (as well as Facebook and Twitter).

For Facebook and Twitter, we even tagged our target prospect in direct social shoutouts:

From #bigwins to #biglosses, learn what #marketingmistakes your competition is guilty of in our PPC Funnel Fixers: #Accounting #Software Episode | https://t.co/djpfeAslqK | with real examples from @NetSuite @SageIntacct and @ChaseforBiz — love to hear what you think! #feedback pic.twitter.com/9B6bwSTrcp

— KlientBoost (@KlientBoost) March 14, 2019https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js

This is also where LinkedIn is an ABM powerhouse for enterprise-level B2B marketers. For starters, boosting these videos was a must. We kept an eye on how these posts performed organically to decide when (and where) to boost them.

LinkedIn Pulse rewards a spike in engagement by raising the placement of your content in the feeds of LinkedIn channels you tag. On top of these boosts in LinkedIn visibility, you get to engage directly with your target decision-makers (which is why strong company and individual profiles are important—more below).

Because you can track down actual individuals based on which companies they work for, you can customize your LinkedIn social promotions by tagging decision-makers at the companies you’re targeting—starting a conversation with the person who will sign on the dotted line (with content made specifically for them).

LinkedIn also allows for scheduled content promotion to keep your brand top-of-mind during the long sales cycle. You can integrate LinkedIn posts with automated social management tools like Buffer.

By the time your scheduled Sponsored Content ads re-engage your LinkedIn audience, your content will have earned plenty of social proof.

But before you start spending thousands on LinkedIn Ads…

Make sure that your presence on LinkedIn reflects well on your brand. Many interactions with ABM prospects may take place organically, as comments on promoted content, for example.

That means optimizing your company page and getting individual reps to optimize their personal LinkedIn profiles.

Here’s a great example of a strong LinkedIn profile. (Image source)

“Optimizing profiles” means:

Consistently sharing branded content;Sharing and tagging external content to boost authority;Tagging prospects in relevant, helpful posts;Posting about locations and events;Not salesy at all;Participating in conversations via comments;Direct Messaging prospects while approaching conversion.

If this seems overwhelming, you may want to invest in the LinkedIn Sales Navigator to make engaging these prospects easier to manage.

Once you’ve developed a LinkedIn reputation that your prospects can trust as an authoritative voice (as opposed to obnoxious sales rep), your Linkedin Ads campaigns will be much more likely to generate a strong ROI.

5. Scaling ABM PPC campaigns with dynamic text insertion

As mentioned earlier, ABM has its drawbacks. It limits the scope of your campaigns to a much smaller audience. Dynamic text insertion can customize your broader marketing and promotion strategies to strengthen your brand presence and support ABM campaigns.

It’s a way to offer more tailored messaging to prospects at scale—somewhere between a traditional blanket approach and hyper-targeted ABM efforts. That effort can help maintain a consistent message after a prospect clicks on an ad or joins your email list.

Dynamic text matches the copy of your ad, landing page, and thank-you page with the exact words your prospects used to find you in the first place. Depending on where prospects are in the funnel, you can customize your CTAs as well.

Dynamic Text Insertion can generate more relevant landing pages, which, in turn, can lead to more relevant calls-to-action and content offers. (Image source)

If you’re a company or agency that offers multiple services (e.g. PPC and CRO), then you may want to segment your prospects based on the type of account-based content your traffic comes from.

If this is the case, dynamic text insertion is the perfect solution to continue message matching from externally facing content to the internal, customized user experience.

6. Account-based retargeting for ABM

ABM retargeting isn’t that different from ordinary retargeting. The key differences are the greater precision of targeting and customization—for the audience and the specific point in the funnel.

As Ed Fry details, running effective retargeting ads for ABM is a multi-step process. A reverse IP lookup (with the help of Clearbit or related tools) can reveal the associated company of site visitors.

But that list may still be too broad. The next level of refinement is to narrow the list to best-fit companies. You can do that with CRM data and lead-scoring software.

Real advancements, Fry continues, come when you enrich prospect information and create dynamic ad audiences—serving ads to the best prospects within the best-fit companies while avoiding tedious re-uploading lists.

(Image source)

Such well-targeted PPC campaigns for ABM, Fry notes, have two benefits:

1. Disengage ads after paid conversion – this prevents wasted ad spend and confusing offers. Not every prospect at an account will hit a burn pixel. Dynamic audiences ensure you’re only retargeting individuals before the conversion.

2. Saturate ads to stakeholders who are close to paid conversion – it pays to accelerate pipeline, and further down the funnel with a small, high value audience, it can make sense to outbid everyone else for the inventory amongst your target

When it comes to ABM and Facebook Retargeting, the biggest win is re-engaging the same users about the same offer based on their previous interest.

Facebook retargeting layers customer contact information over already highly custom-built audiences. This makes it the perfect ABM weapon for prospects who may be interested but are currently unavailable. This can be for a few reasons:

Currently with another vendor;Don’t have the budget;Are going through internal changes at the company, etc.

Facebook Dark Posts (i.e. posts that are not publicly visible) can help identify the most compelling offers, keep you engaged with unavailable prospects, and help you to gauge where they are in the ABM funnel.

Here are a few more ways to make sure your ABM retargeting doesn’t go to waste:

Keep your brand and messaging ever-present in the eyes of your prospects with display ads on competitive keywords.Improve your organic and paid presence on branded keywords as your prospects move down funnel from research to consideration.Use Facebook Dark Posts and Smoke Tests to identify new ABM offers to increase click-through and conversion rates.

Conclusion

The saturation of the PPC market with hyper-targeted campaigns has made it more difficult to stand out. ABM is a potential solution.

ABM focuses the list of target accounts to a select few or even one at a time. This cranks up the pressure to close. Using a Quota-Campaign approach can balance ongoing needs with ABM campaigns.

Successfully run ABM campaigns allow you to stand alone in your dedication to potential clients by creating ads and content just for them. It also helps you surround them on all sides with:

Customer Match, Similar Audiences, and Radius Targeting in Google Ads;Strong profiles, tailored content, and boosted posts on social media, especially LinkedIn;A focus on retargeting to keep prospects warm during the long sales cycle.

The post 6 PPC Tactics for Account-Based Marketing Campaigns appeared first on CXL.

0

We Analyzed 12 Million Outreach Emails. Here’s What We Learned

sourced from: https://backlinko.com/email-outreach-study

We analyzed 12 million outreach emails to answer the question:

What’s working in the world of email outreach right now?

We looked at subject lines. We looked at personalization. We even looked at follow-up sequences.

Along with our data partner for this study, Pitchbox, we uncovered a number of interesting findings.

Here is a Summary of Our Key Findings:

1. The vast majority of outreach messages are ignored. Only 8.5% of outreach emails receive a response.

2. Outreach emails with long subject lines have a 24.6% higher average response rate compared to those with short subject lines.

3. Follow-ups appear to significantly improve response rates. Emailing the same contact multiple times leads to 2x more responses.

4. Reaching out to multiple contacts can also lead to more success. The response rate of messages sent to several contacts is 93% higher than messages sent to a single person.

5. Personalized subject lines boost response rate by 30.5%. Therefore, personalizing subject lines appears to have a large impact on outreach campaign results.

6. Personalizing outreach email body content also seems to be an effective way to increase response rates. Emails with personalized message bodies have a 32.7% better response rate than those that don’t personalize their messages.

7. Wednesday is the “best” day to send outreach emails. Saturday is the worst. However, we didn’t find an especially large difference in response rates between different days that messages were sent.

8. Linking to social profiles in email signatures may result in better response rates. Twitter was correlated with an 8.2% increase, LinkedIn an 11.5% increase, and Instagram a 23.4% increase.

9. The most successful outreach campaigns reach out to multiple contacts multiple times. Email sequences with multiple attempts and multiple contacts boost response rates by 160%.

10. Certain types of outreach get higher response rates than others. Outreach messages related to guest posting, roundups and links have an especially high response rate.

We have details and additional data from our study below.

Most Outreach Emails Are Ignored or Deleted

You may have heard that it’s challenging to get people to reply to cold outreach emails. According to our data, poor response rates do appear to be the norm.

In fact, we found that only 8.5% of all outreach emails receive a response.

This response rate is similar to what several cases studies, like this one from the Moz blog, have previously found.

The fact that 91.5% of cold outreach messages are ignored may not come as a surprise. After all, generic outreach emails like this are extremely common:

Fortunately, our research found several factors that helped certain outreach emails outperform the average. We will cover these findings later in this post.

But for now, it’s important to note that very few outreach emails receive a response.

Key Takeaway: 91.5% of outreach emails are ignored.

The Ideal Outreach Email Subject Line Length Is 36-50 Characters

Our study found that long subject lines get a significantly higher response rate than shorter subject lines.

Specifically, subject lines between 36-50 characters get the best response rate.

To compare subject line response rates, we placed them into 5 buckets: short, medium, long, very long and extremely long.

And we found that long subject lines outperformed short subject lines by 32.7%.

Why do long subject lines do best?

It’s likely because longer subject lines give you an opportunity to fully describe the content of your message.

For example, imagine a super short subject line like: “Quick Question”.

At 13 characters, it’s impossible for your recipient to know what your email is about. It could be a question about their sales process. Or their lunch plans.

Plus, because it doesn’t note anything specific, it makes your outreach email seem generic before they’ve even opened it.

Contrast that with a subject line like: “Quick Question About Your Latest Blog Post”

This subject line is much more specific. That way, if the recipient decides to open your email, they know what to expect.

However, it’s possible for your subject line to be too long.

For example, “Quick Question About Your Latest Blog Post About The Top 10 Paleo Diet Myths” is an extremely descriptive subject line. But it’s likely to get cut off by most inboxes (like Gmail):

Key Takeaway: Long subject lines get 32.7% more responses than short subject lines.

Sending Follow-up Messages Significantly Improves Response Rates

Should you send follow-up messages to people that don’t reply to your initial outreach?

According to our findings, yes. We found that multiple outreach messages work better than a single message:

While sending 3 or more messages results in the best overall response rate, sending just one additional follow-up can boost replies by 65.8%.

Why do follow-ups work so well?

Simply put: people receive lots of emails in their inbox every day. In fact, The Radicati Group found that the average office worker receives 121 emails per day.

With 100+ emails to sift through per day, the chances of your single outreach email getting seen, opened and replied to is pretty slim.

But when you send more than one message, you have yet another chance to stand out and push through the noise in someone’s inbox.

Of course, there’s a right and wrong way to send follow-up messages.

Annoying follow-ups like these can damage relationships, lead to spam complaints, and overall, do more harm than good.

However, gentle follow-ups that provide additional context can improve conversions without burning bridges.

Key Takeaway: Follow-ups can significantly improve outreach conversion rates. In fact, a single additional follow-up message can lead to 65.8% more replies.

Reaching Out to Several Contacts Increases the Odds of a Response

We looked at the effect that reaching out to several contacts at the same organization had on outreach conversions.

And we found that, compared to a single contact, sending emails to more than one contact improves response rates by 93%.

We also looked at how outreach success rate correlated with number of contacts. We found a clear pattern that more contacts leads to more responses.

However, we did find a point of diminishing returns at 5+ contacts.

If you’re reaching out to a single-author blog, you probably don’t need to worry about sending messages to several different contacts.

However, multiple contacts becomes important when reaching out to large websites with dozens of employees. That’s because it can be hard to tell who exactly is responsible for which task (even with the help of an org chart and “About Us” page).

For example, let’s say that you’re sending an outreach message to a large publisher as part of a link building campaign. Should you email the author of the article? Or the editor of the blog? Or maybe the best person is the head of content.

It’s almost impossible to know without an intimate understanding of the organization’s inner workings. That’s why it usually makes sense to reach out to a single person. Then, if you don’t hear back, try again with another contact. That way, over time, your message should get in front of the person that is most likely to add your link to the post.

Key Takeaway: Having multiple contacts to reach out to increases your chances of getting through. In fact, outreach emails sent to multiple contacts can boost response rates by 93%.

Personalized Subject Lines Lead to More Replies

Personalizing emails is considered an outreach best practice. However, to our knowledge, there hasn’t been any research done to support this strategy.

That’s why we decided to investigate the effect of personalization on outreach email replies. Specifically, we compared the response rates between messages that did and didn’t use personalized subject lines.

Our data showed that personalized subject lines got nearly 1/3rd more replies than those without personalization.

Why do personalized subject lines lead to more responses?

Although it’s difficult to fully answer this question from our data alone, my theory is that personalized subject lines help you stand out in someone’s crowded inbox.

For example, take a non-personalized subject line like: “More Leads”. For someone that’s hurriedly scanning incoming emails from their iPhone, “More Leads” doesn’t compel them to see or open the message.

On the other hand, adding a bit of personalization makes your subject line much more compelling to the person on the receiving end of your message.

Key Takeaway: Emails with personalized subject lines boost response rate by 30.5%.

Personalizing Email Body Copy Can Significantly Improve Response Rates

As we just outlined, personalized subject lines are correlated with higher response rates (likely due to a higher email open rate).

However, we wanted to see if the benefits of personalization extended to the outreach email body itself.

Our data showed that personalizing the body of outreach emails also improved conversion rates. Specifically, personalized messages received 32.7% more replies than those that weren’t personalized.

Generic outreach messages are easy to spot. For example, here’s one that I received a few days ago:

The telltale “Hi,” or “Hello,” is usually enough to let you know that this exact same email has been sent to hundreds of other people.

On the other hand, even a relatively small gesture, like using the person’s first name, can go a long way.

And for those that are interested in getting the highest reply rate possible, writing outreach emails from scratch (or working from a template with lots of room for personalization), seems to work best. Here’s an example of one such outreach email someone recently sent me:

According to our research, personalizing subject lines and body copy is correlated with above-average response rates. Yes, personalizing takes more time and effort. But the data suggests that this extra work pays off.

Key Takeaway: Emails with personalized bodies boost response rate by 32.7%.

Wednesday Is the Best Day To Send Outreach Messages

Several industry studies have set out to answer the “best day to send emails” question. However, most of these studies (like this one from GetResponse) are specific to newsletter messages. They also tend to focus on open rates, not reply rates.

Which is why we decided to look at how response rates differed based on the day of the week that messages were sent out.

Our data showed that Wednesday had a slight edge over the other 6 days of the week. Also, Saturday appears to have the worst response rate.

However, I should note that the differences in response rates were somewhat small.

For example, when we looked at the response rate for the “best” day (Wednesday) to the “worst” day (Saturday), we found that messages sent on Wednesday had a 1.99% higher overall response rate.

In other words, according to this data, sending outreach emails on Wednesday vs. Saturday could theoretically boost your response rate from 6% to 7.99%. If you’re only sending a few dozen outreach messages per month, this may only lead to an additional reply or two.

However, this finding is more significant if you’re doing outreach at scale. That’s because, while 1.99% may not mean much in absolute terms, it amounts to a 33.1% higher relative response rate. Which is significant for those that send out a large amount of outreach emails every month.

We also compared response rates for messages sent during the week vs. those sent on the weekend.

And we found that outreach emails sent Monday through Friday had a 23.3% better conversion rate than emails sent on Saturday or Sunday.

Key Takeaway: Outreach emails sent on Wednesday get more responses than any other day of the week. However, most small-scale outreach campaigns don’t need to organize their sequences based on the day of the week.

Linking to Social Profiles May Slightly Improve Outreach Response Rates

Do social profile links in the email signature affect response rates?

According to our study, they do. Messages that contained links to social profile links in the sender’s signature had an 9.8% higher average response rate compared to messages without them.

We also broke down the impact of social signature links by social network. We found that linking to Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram profiles positively affect response rates. However, linking to Facebook profiles didn’t seem to make a dent.

Why would social profile links lead to more responses?

I have two theories:

First, links to social profiles make you seem like a living, breathing person.

I doubt that many recipients actually click on these social signature links. However, their mere presence may suggest: “I’m not an outreach robot. I’m a person that’s reaching out to you”.

Second, it’s possible that social profile links may not have any direct impact on responses at all. It could be a case of correlation, not causation.

For example, people that tend to be transparent may also spend more time personalizing their messages, which is the true underlying cause of the improved response rates.

While it’s impossible to glean the exact effect of social profile links on outreach response rates, they don’t appear to hurt conversions. Which makes them something worth testing.

Key Takeaway: Outreach emails that contain links to social profiles have a 9.8% higher response rate than those without social profile links. Links to Instagram and LinkedIn appear to be most effective.

Email Sequences That Involve Multiple Contacts and Multiple Messages Perform Best Overall

As I covered earlier in this write-up, follow-up messages and sending multiple contacts are correlated with higher outreach reply rates.

We also decided to investigate the combined effect that these two strategies had on conversion rates. Specifically, we compared reply rates between a single email to a single contact with a 3-part email campaign to several different contacts.

Our data showed that more contacts combined with sequencing yield a 160% higher response rate than sending a single message to a single contact.

Key Takeaway: Taken as a whole, campaigns that involve sequences that go out to several contacts perform significantly better than one-off emails to a single person.

Outreach Emails About “Links”, “Guest Posting” and “Roundups” Have Especially High Response Rates

We investigated reply rates between eight common email outreach topics.

Specifically, we looked at the reply rate for outreach emails related to:

Link building
Guest posting
Sponsorships
Infographics
Resources
Reviews
Mentions
Roundups

And we found that outreach emails about guest posting, roundups and link building all had an above-average response rate.

This is an especially interesting finding considering that many content marketing and SEO experts consider guest posting and roundups “dead”.

However, at least according to our study, site owners are still largely receptive to pitches for guest posts and expert roundup invitations.

Emails related to sponsorships also tended to get a fair share of replies. I found this noteworthy as Influencer Marketing, which relies heavily on paid product placement and promotion, is growing. It appears that influencers are still happy to receive pitches from brands that want to sponsor their website, YouTube channel or Instagram profile.

Our data also showed that messages about infographics receive relatively few replies.

This may be due to the fact that infographics have lost the novelty they once had. Or that the most infographic-focused outreach is untargeted.

For example, I got this infographic pitch in my inbox a few months ago:

My site has never written about or even touched on holiday promotions. This was clearly someone that created a mediocre infographic with the hope that mass outreach would help get the word out.

Key Takeaway: Emails about guest posts, roundups, links and sponsorships tend to get the best response rates.

Conclusion

I’d like to thank Michael Geneles from Pitchbox for providing the data that made this study possible. I also want to give a shout out to Alex Gopshtein for digging deep into the data and making it easy to understand and digest.

And for those that are interested, here’s a link to our study methods.

Now I’d like to hear from you:

What’s your #1 takeaway from today’s study?

Let me know by leaving a comment below right now.

The post We Analyzed 12 Million Outreach Emails. Here’s What We Learned appeared first on Backlinko.

0

9 Surefire Ways to Boost Social Media Following

sourced from: https://www.digitalmarketer.com/blog/boost-social-media-following/

In our noisy, fast-paced, digital world, social media is the megaphone that amplifies everything.

Good thing, too, because today, brands are struggling to gain followers who respond to their content and offers.

Social media is about human connection.

Think about it, hundreds of thousands of new business start up each month, and nearly all of them are trying to carve their own social presences. And even if only a few are in your specific market, you’ve still got A LOT to compete against.

But having a successful social media strategy can mean the difference between your business succeeding or not.

With a strong social media presence, you’ve got a warm audience that’s primed to click.

So it makes sense that one of the most important parts of your organic social media strategy is building and nurturing your social following (after all, if nobody knows who you are, then nobody will buy from you).

How do you do that? Here are 9 ways to boost your social media following fast—and grow your business while you’re at it.

1. Be Human

I’m not just talking about passing those “I am not a robot” tests.

Social media is about human connection.

It’s where people go when they’re lonely or bored—to find encouragement, inspiration, or a good laugh. Which is why you need a social strategy that’s more human than corporate.

And yes, that’s important even if you’re a B2B business. Businesses are run by people, after all.

Being human is about being real. It’s about being personal. It’s about engaging with your followers as people rather than targets for your next campaign.

Take Red Bull, for example. They don’t talk much about their energy drinks, but they don’t have to. By telling stories about their partner athletes, their message comes across loud and clear: Red Bull will help you do the incredible things other people only dream about.

Check out any of their content, and you’ll see real people having adventures, experiencing life, and overcoming the odds. Their energy drink is almost an after-thought. But dang… don’t you want one?

Red Bull’s YouTube channel motivates, inspires, and entertains by showing you what real people are doing.

TIP: Find creative ways to promote people on your social media accounts—both the people behind your brand and those who use your products.

2. Stop Being So Perfect

Ryan Deiss recently posted on LinkedIn, “Don’t deny your failures, don’t spin them; linger in them and learn from them.”

“Don’t deny your failures, don’t spin them; linger in them and learn from them.”
–Ryan Deiss

Most people don’t care if you make a mistake. They do care about how you respond to those mistakes. Do you try to pretend they didn’t happen, or do you own them?

KFC decided to own their mistake. In early 2018, a new delivery provider didn’t do their job, leaving hundreds of UK locations short on their primary offer: chicken. There was nothing they could do to fix the situation and all of the restaurants were forced to shut down for a few days.

Pretty embarrassing, right?

Fans were livid. Competitors were laughing. And some jumped on the opportunity to win over unhappy KFC customers.

In response, KFC ran a full-page ad, apologizing for the mistake by rearranging the letters of their name—probably expressing everyone’s feelings to a tee.

KFC ran a full-page ad in The Sun and Metro acknowledging their mistake.

This is a great example of not being perfect… and running with it. KFC proved they have a sense of humor and a willingness to acknowledge everything they do, the good, bad, and the ugly.

TIP: You will mess up. Royally, at times. When it happens, you will help boost your social media following if you call it as it is: You screwed up. You failed. You’re sorry. Then wipe up the mess and move on—most likely with fans who admire your honesty.

3. Share Better Content

The winners in social media marketing aren’t just scheduling posts and curating information. They’re sharing professional-quality content developed specifically to boost social media.

“Better” content is designed for the channel where it’s posted.

This content is funny, fascinating, and emotionally charged. It leaves people wanting more, not scrolling faster to avoid “branded” content—because let’s be honest, it’s more interesting than the political posts their friends are sharing.

The key is understanding “better.”

“Better” content is designed for the channel where it’s posted. But regardless of the format—text, graphics, or videos—it aims for quality over quantity. It’s personal and unique. It’s social.

Take White House Black Market. Their Facebook page is as simple and stylish as the boutique.

Instead of one picture of this season’s dress, it gives you a montage of the dress, letting you see it in several settings.

And when appropriate, it mentions a current event. As it does here, paying tribute to a fashion icon.

The point is to be intentional—engaging with and entertaining your fans, so they eagerly come back for more.

TIP: To create better content, make sure it “looks” like your brand. Use the highest quality imagery and your best writing. Create campaigns where a series of posts all follow the same theme.

4. Use Live Videos

One of the best things about social media is its immediacy. If something’s on your mind, you can share it right here and now using live videos.

Done right, this can have a huge impact on your brand, attracting new fans and cementing your relationship with existing ones.

Chris Brogan is the perfect example of this. He’s a master of using media and community to attract customers.

Chris’s Facebook Lives range from 53 seconds to 8 minutes, but most are in the 2-minute range. Some are recorded on his phone as he takes out the trash. Others are done at his desk. All of them have profoundly helpful tips for his fans.

TIP: Think of your live videos as a channel within a channel. Create a show with a specific value offer—like 3-minute tips to solve your audience’s biggest problems. The key is to be in-the-moment and share something valuable.

(NOTE: Want to make sure your social media strategy is helping to grow your business? Download our FREE Social Media Scorecards and you can quickly find out what’s working and why, so you can do more of it! Learn more here!)

5. Do Something Worth Talking About

Going viral can be good or bad. United Airlines lost customers when the “United Breaks Guitars” video went live. But if you’re smart and creative, you can get people talking in a way that’s good for your public perception—and hopefully for sales too.

Dove’s Real Beauty campaign is an example of an emotionally charged social media campaign that got people talking about body shame and beauty.

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_XOa7zVqxA4]

You can also do something silly to get people talking. KFC created a Colonel Sanders cat climber and aired 4 hours of livestreamed cat action.

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kdHX6NOIQEc]

The key is to understand your audience. You can aim for tears or laughs or both—as long as you’re relevant.

TIP: To create a unique campaign for your brand, think of the #1 expectation people have of your brand. It might be entertainment, beauty, health, profits… or something else entirely. Once you’ve identified that quality, think of a message or event you could put together to get people’s attention. Make sure it’s shareworthy and gets people talking.

And remember, a viral campaign may repel as many people as it attracts. But that’s okay. Your biggest fans will find you. Think Nike’s “Believe in Something” campaign with Colin Kaepernick.

6. Do a Giveaway

Giveaways are an easy way to get people’s attention. You can give away:

Books

The key is to understand your audience.

Trips
Tickets to an event
Product bundles
Gift cards
Coupons
Or anything else you know your fans would love

You can ask for entries to sign up, have your followers share a hashtag, leave a comment on a blog post, or send you an email. Whatever helps you reach your goals and grow your social strategy.

And you don’t even have to have the details figured out before you run with it. This giveaway by Bert’s Barracuda Harley-Davidson is a great example of that:

The key is to design your campaign to achieve a specific business goal.

TIP: Identify your goal for the giveaway, then decide what you can give away. Consider using an app like KingSumo to run the campaign. Then reward entrants for sharing the giveaway so you get as much reach as possible.

7. Offer Free 1-on-1s

Free consultations could qualify as a giveaway, but they’re unique enough to warrant a separate discussion.

While giveaways work well as lead-generation campaigns by bringing new prospects into your funnels, free consultations help you move prospects further along their Customer Journey—often leading to conversions.

(RELATED: The Customer Value Journey Explained in 800 Words or Less)

Consider offering an audit or a chat about your follower’s #1 challenge. You can take unlimited responses (especially if you have a team to do the calls), or you could limit it to the first 20 responders.

Then ask people to do something to qualify—like sharing a post on their social media, promoting your brand with a unique hashtag, or answering a question.

People perceive an expert’s time and advice as more valuable than a high-ticket product. So simply offering your time can build a huge social following fast—especially if you build in a reward for sharing the offer like you would with a classic giveaway.

TIP: Be sure to ask winners to post a “thank you” in social media, telling their followers what they learned from you.

8. Do Q&As

If you’ve got a well-engaged community, consider doing regular Q&A sessions.

You can offer “office hours,” a specific time set aside each week for people to write in their questions. Or you can ask people to submit their questions when you announce an upcoming Q&A session.

Regardless of how you structure them, Q&As can build your community, boost engagement, and quickly establish you as a thought leader.

This live stream with Steady Horse’s Noah Tillman-Young is a good example.

TIP: In addition to asking your fans for their questions, brainstorm your own list. That way, if you don’t have a lot of participation, you can keep the Q&A going between live questions.

 9. Ask Their Opinion

You don’t always have to answer questions to build a strong community. You can ask questions instead.

No one does this better than copywriter Bob Bly. Every day, he shares something he’s seen, read, or thought. Sometimes he shares his own opinion, but he almost always asks for yours.

With this approach, Bob’s Facebook profile has essentially become a daily newsletter. It’s also grown his following faster than average—from zero to 5,000 in just a few short years.

Here’s a typical query:

He may also ask for input, as he does here:

TIP: As you read your emails and browse the web each day, look for interesting factoids that are worth sharing. Then follow up by asking your followers what they think, what their experience has been, or how they’d respond.

Being social isn’t an afterthought. It’s how you attract and engage with your best customers. So it pays to have a strategy for attracting new fans and building engagement.

(NOTE: Want to make sure your social media strategy is helping to grow your business? Download our FREE Social Media Scorecards and you can quickly find out what’s working and why, so you can do more of it! Learn more here!)

The post 9 Surefire Ways to Boost Social Media Following appeared first on DigitalMarketer.

0

How to Find the Right Keywords to Rank #1 on Google For

sourced from: https://neilpatel.com/blog/right-keywords-seo/

Do you want more traffic?

Well, who doesn’t?

The reason you want more traffic is that you think more traffic equals more revenue.

But here is what you’ll learn the hard way… as your traffic goes up, your revenue won’t increase at the same pace.

And in many cases, as your traffic goes up, your revenue won’t increase one bit.

In other words, if you get the wrong kind of traffic, you’ll find yourself spinning your wheels and becoming frustrated.

It happens to all of us, let me show you what I’ve learned the hard way.

So how good is my search traffic?

Take a look at the screenshot below.

That’s a laundry list of keywords that drive me the most traffic. But there is an issue with a lot of those keywords. They drive traffic but not revenue.

Keywords like affiliate marketing, SEO analyzer, SEO checker, statistical significance calculator are all terms that won’t drive me any revenue.

I don’t offer affiliate marketing services and anyone searching for terms like “SEO analyzer” are looking to do SEO themselves versus paying my agency to do it for them.

Even terms like “statistical significance calculator” don’t drive revenue. Anyone searching for that is looking to see how their A/B tests are performing versus hiring my agency to run tests for them.

If I naturally ranked for these terms without any effort, that’s one thing. But I created dedicated landing pages, like this one, because I was trying to rank for them.

In other words, I spent time and money ranking for keywords that don’t drive any revenue.

Now, there is a reason why I rank for these terms and I do want this traffic, even though they don’t drive revenue, but I will get to that later in this post.

First, let’s go over how you can pick the right keywords to rank number 1 for.

How to pick the right keywords

You probably already have some ideas are a good fit for your business. I want you to type them into Ubersuggest.

Ubersuggest will show how many people search for that keyword within a particular region as well as the SEO difficulty and paid difficulty.

In addition to that, you’ll see a laundry list of keyword ideas if you click on the “keyword ideas” navigational option.

What you’ll want to look for are keywords that have high paid difficulty, which means the keyword is so valuable that a lot of people are competing for the paid ad spots.

In addition to looking at the paid difficulty number, you’ll want to find keywords that have a low SEO difficulty score.

When a keyword meets those 2 requirements it means it is easy to rank and people find it valuable enough to buy ads on the keyword. And if they find it valuable enough for people to buy paid ads, that means the traffic is converting into customers.

That’s more important than just finding popular keywords as traffic doesn’t always equal sales.

And when you are doing keyword research, make sure you pick the right regions.

Not all traffic is equal

Again, you already know I get good traffic, but as I mentioned earlier, not all of the traffic is equal.

Just look at the regions that made up my traffic in the last 7 days:

The United States makes up a large portion of my traffic. Over time I’ve expanded globally, hence you are seeing my traffic increase in regions like India and Brazil. Even Japan, which is the newest region I have been expanding to, has been growing rapidly.

Knowing the split between regions, which ones would you say make up the largest portion of revenue?

If you guess the United States, you are correct. But what region do you think is in second place?

If you guess India or Brazil, you are wrong.

I love those two countries, but the United Kingdom generates more revenue than both of those regions combined, even though it produces 25.6% of the traffic as Brazil and India combined.

Are you picking the right regions?

When you are doing keyword research, you need to think about regions. This is also the main reason why I integrated regions within Ubersuggest.

You can’t just focus on keywords that have high paid difficulty and low SEO difficulty. You need to focus on the countries where the majority of your customer base is.

Now, you know SEO is competitive and it takes a while to rank. So if you can go after up and coming regions that you know you’ll want to target in a few years, then you should go after those keywords right away.

It takes a while for people to see this, but the reason I have done pretty well when it comes to picking the right terms is that I focus on regions that aren’t ready for my company just yet but will be over the next 5 to 10 years.

I know that sounds crazy, but to do well you need long-term goals and a strategic outlook for your business.

To give you an idea of how I think, let’s look at how the worlds GDP is going to change over the next 10 years:

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T9l2yCH5wBk?feature=oembed&w=700&h=394]

That video bases GDP growth off of historical data. Companies like Standard Chartered believe there will be much more aggressive GDP growth, especially coming out of Asia.

China: $64.2 trillion
India: $46.3 trillion
US: $31 trillion
Indonesia: $10.1 trillion
Turkey: $9.1 trillion
Brazil: $8.6 trillion
Egypt: $8.2 trillion
Russia: $7.9 trillion
Japan: $7.2 trillion
Germany: $6.9 trillion

No matter what source you look at, almost everyone is coming to the same conclusion… countries with big populations will see faster GDP growth.

If I were you and I was trying to pick the best keywords to rank number 1 on Google, I wouldn’t just focus on countries that are already established and saturated, I would also focus on countries that are growing fast and aren’t competitive yet.

Even in the short run, although some of these countries may not have as much demand, there is no competition, which means it will be easier to take up a larger chunk of the market.

How do you find popular keywords in these countries?

Doing keyword research in new countries isn’t as simple as typing in random keywords and seeing what’s popular.

You can do that with tools like Ubersuggest, but that may still cause you to pick the wrong ones.

For example, in the United States, the keyword “SEO” is more lucrative than the phrase “digital marketing.” But in Brazil, the phrase “marketing digital” (their version of digital marketing) is more lucrative than the term SEO.

In other words, cultures are different.

So, what you should do is use a tool like Similar Web to see who your closest competitors are. When I look at NeilPatel.com on Similar Web, it gives me the following results:

You can then take those competing URLs and enter them into Ubersuggest.

What I want you to do is first look at the “top pages” report. This report shows you the most popular pages that are driving traffic to any given site.

The best part about this report is that you can break down popular pages by country.

From there you can see the popular pages and even the keywords that drive traffic to that page within that country.

And similar to the top pages report, you can do the same thing with the keywords report.

With the combination of the top pages and keywords report, you should have a list of great keywords to go after. Not just from a domestic standpoint, but from a global standpoint as you can see the popular keywords for each country in Ubersuggest.

But how do I rank number 1?

Once you have a list of keywords, it’s time to create content and focus on ranking at the top of Google. But you already know that. 😉

The real question is, how do you rank high?

Well, I have tons of blog posts on that. Here are a few of my favorites that will help you out:

How to dominate Google – there are over 200 factors in Google’s algorithm. One too many for you to follow. In this post, you’ll find a 4-step process that will help you climb to the top. It’s made SEO more feasible as there is no way you are going to focus on all 200 of Google’s algorithm factors.
How to build links when no one will link to you – link building is still a huge part of Google’s algorithm. This post breaks down how to do link building when nobody knows you and you don’t have money to spend on link building.
The future of SEO – if you want to rank high and maintain your rankings, you need to know the future of search and how algorithms are going to change.
How I think about SEO – this post breaks down my personal SEO strategy for NeilPatel.com. If you copy it, you will do well. Look at the brand hack I mention in that post, it helps a lot with rankings.
The advanced SEO formula that helped me rank for 477,000 keywords – this is how I rank for thousands of keywords on Google.

Once you start ranking for the terms you want to go after, you need to do one last thing.

The last step

Remember how I said earlier in this post that I rank for terms like “SEO analyzer” that don’t drive me any sales?

And how I want to rank for those terms?

Once you rank for the main terms and even the long tail ones that will drive you direct revenue, you need to start winning mindshare.

The way you create a successful SEO campaign is to capture an audience before they are even ready to become your customer. This way your brand will grow with all segments of your potential customer base.

Just think of it this way, when people Google the term “SEO analyzer” and land on my site, the majority of those people will want to do SEO on their own.

But a small portion of those people may get frustrated and realize that they should just hire someone to do it for them.

And then there is another group that will search for that term, want to do SEO for their own site, and they’ll even get great results over time. Then when their friends asked them how they did it, they’ll mention how they used a free tool on NeilPatel.com.

Their friend will probably check out my site and maybe even contact me for services as they don’t care to do their own SEO.

In other words, when you are doing keyword research, you’ll want to focus on ranking for all the terms in your industry if you want to build the biggest brand and dominate.

The mistake I made is I went after those terms too soon. It worked out in the end, but I should have first focused on keywords that drove direct sales and then went after the keywords that would grow my brand.

Conclusion

SEO isn’t free! It takes time and money.

You have to look at it as an investment just like you would with paid ads.

So, if you are going to rank for keywords and do SEO, go after the correct terms. Spend a little bit of time doing keyword research and competitive analysis because you don’t waste a year climbing to the top of Google only to find that the term you went after doesn’t drive any sales.

And if you happen to be lucky enough to have extra money to invest in SEO, consider expanding internationally. It’s the best move I made, and I am dumping in as much money as I can to dominate the globe.

Businesses no longer have to live within one city, region, state, or even country. You have to think global if you want to win in the long run.

So, what do you think about my keyword research process?

The post How to Find the Right Keywords to Rank #1 on Google For appeared first on Neil Patel.

0

How I Grew My Declining Google Traffic

sourced from: https://neilpatel.com/blog/declining-google-traffic/

When you look at the chart above, what do you see?

A site that gets a ton of traffic, right?

I am a marketer, so I should be somewhat decent at getting traffic… or so you would hope.

But here is the thing, just because I am decent at marketing doesn’t mean my Google traffic keeps climbing up and to the right.

Just like you, I face challenges.

I have ups and downs, I can also get penalized, and I have to continually battle algorithm updates.

When you are doing SEO, nothing is ever going to be perfect and it won’t always go the way you want.

My overall traffic growth

Let’s look at my overall Google traffic. Here’s my organic search traffic in January of 2018.

I had a whopping 743,744 visitors during that month. 550,607 of those visitors were unique.

Now if you fast forward to January 2019, my organic search traffic increased to 2,035,321 visitors. Of those visitors, 1,495,372 were unique.

That’s a 173% increase in search traffic in just 12 months.

Now you may think that it was easy for me to achieve those results because I’m a decent marketer. But just like you, it’s a constant fight to maintain and grow my traffic.

And in many cases, it goes down.

My decline in search traffic

Yes, you saw my search traffic from January to January, but let’s look at the dips as well.

Here’s my search traffic in October of 2018.

As you can see, I had 1,941,994 visits from Google of which 1,417,994 were unique.

Now when you fast forward to November, my search traffic went down to 1,799,837 visitors of which 1,347,775 were unique.

That’s a 7.3% decline in search traffic.

Sure, November had one less day than October and there was a holiday in the United States in November… but my traffic is global and NeilPatel.com is currently in 10 different languages.

In other words, there are holidays everywhere in the world every single month. Plus, the United States only makes up 23% of my total traffic.

And, of course, in December it got much worse, but I expected that as that happens each year.

As you can see from the graph, the last few weeks are really slow, but that is because of Christmas and New Years.

So, how do you know when your traffic is dropping?

If you don’t, you should start looking at your Google Analytics daily.

The one report I look at to make sure everything is going right is a week over week comparison.

The reason you want to look at a week over week comparison is that your traffic is going to fluctuate day by day. For example, Tuesdays are typically my highest days and Saturdays are typically my lowest days.

The last thing you want to do is compare a Saturday with a Monday.

As you can see in early November, my search traffic started to drop. In the first week, I saw a 4% dip.

And on Tuesday I saw a 6.94% drop in search traffic.

In the following weeks, the traffic didn’t bounce back. That’s when I knew something was off.

Now when you start to see traffic drops you shouldn’t panic. The first thing you should do is head over to this site.

It will tell you if there is a holiday somewhere around the world that could be negatively impacting your traffic.

The second thing you should do is check out Search Engine Roundtable, as they tend to cover more algorithm updates than anywhere else. They’ll even break down what people are experiencing and potential solutions.

Assuming your traffic did drop and it didn’t bounce up within a week or two, you need to start making changes.

The longer you wait the harder it is to recover your decreasing search traffic.

How do you increase your search traffic when Google keeps reducing your rankings?

9 out of 10 times when your traffic drops it’s related to your content. Whether it’s content on one page or content on your whole site it typically is content related.

The moment you see drops you need to login into Google Search Console and see if there are any messages.

Chances are, there won’t be any messages. 🙁

The next thing I want you to do is to click on “Performance.”

You should see a screen that looks something like this:

Now click on the date button above the graph. It should say “Date: Last 3 Months.”

Then click on compare…

Then enter the dates you want to compare on start versus end date. Make sure you select a 7-day period so you get the full picture.

You should now see a report that looks something like this…

I want you to unclick “Impressions.”

Then, I want you to click “Pages” and sort by “Difference” (the arrow should be pointing up).

This will show you all of the pages that dropped in traffic. These are the pages that lost the most significant rankings and, ultimately, your drop in traffic.

Next, I want you to click on a URL. You should start from top to bottom (you’re going to have to repeat this process for each URL with a massive drop).

Then click on queries and again sort by Difference.

Now before you do anything, scroll back up and click on “Position” in the graph. This will adjust your table and show you if your rankings dropped for any of those terms.

Assuming it did drop, I want you to do a Google search for that term and look at all of the sites that rank in the top 10 and compare your content with those that are ranking on page 1.

I know there are companies that offer software solutions that break down all of the keywords your competitors use on their page and it tells you what you are missing. I spent over $60,000 doing this in 2017 and it didn’t help boost (or even recover!) any of my rankings.

Instead, I want you to ignore all of the SEO software out there and just put yourself in the user’s shoes.

What do you honestly think of your competitors’ pages? Is their content better than yours? Is their design more user-friendly? Does their site load so much faster that it creates a better experience for you?

When you put yourself in the searcher’s shoes, it will give you an idea of what you need to fix.

I know I am making it oversimplified, but it really comes down to doing what’s best for the user. In most cases, that might be adding better images or improving your content because it isn’t up to date.

It’s not about keyword stuffing or having more words than anyone else. Heck, I rank higher than my old blog Quick Sprout for the same terms, with content that contains fewer words.

Just look at the term SEO. I’m on page 1 of Google for it:

Now let’s look at my SEO guide. It contains 10,244 words.

The Quick Sprout guide on SEO has 9 chapters and is a bit shy of 30,000 words.

Can you guess where the Quick Sprout guide ranks?

Middle of page 2.

The point is, it’s about quality.

That’s why most sites lose their rankings. Because other sites come out with content that is better for users. It doesn’t matter that it doesn’t have as many backlinks or that the word count is lower. In the end, Google focuses on user metrics.

Things like backlinks can help boost your rankings temporarily, but if the user metrics show that people hate your content once you are at the top, your rankings will drop.

This can’t be the case, my content is better and my rankings keep dropping

You might look at the steps above and believe your content is better but your rankings keep dropping. You might even talk to users and they agree and give you the same feedback. They think it’s better. So what’s going on?

The chances are your rankings dropped because of age.

Do you remember how my traffic dropped from October to November? Well, in November, I hired a few contractors to help fix my old content.

A lot of it wasn’t outdated and through surveying, we found people were happy with it. However, it just wasn’t ranking.

I had more backlinks than my competition and even more brand queries.

So, I embarked on a journey where I had a few people update my older content pieces. Sometimes they only adjust a few sentences and sometimes they rewrote entire paragraphs or sections.

That one thing grew my search traffic to 2,199,658 visitors over the last 31 days:

With over a billion blogs on the web, Google truly has its choice of deciding who to rank. There’s too much content to rank on the web, so when picking between 2 sites that are almost identical in SEO metrics, they are going to pick the fresh site versus one that hasn’t been updated in years.

Conclusion

No matter how good you are at SEO, you are going to see traffic drops. The key to seeing consistent growth year over year is to focus on the process I outlined above.

I know people still talk about backlinks and on-page SEO. But that is something everyone already does and you should be as well.

To truly stand out in the crowd, you need to put yourself in the searcher’s shoes and create the best experience for them.

And a simple thing like updating your old content will usually solve the problem and boost your traffic. 😉

So, how often do you update your old content?

The post How I Grew My Declining Google Traffic appeared first on Neil Patel.

0

Top 10 Takeaways from Traffic & Conversion Summit 2019 Every Marketer Should Know

sourced from: https://www.digitalmarketer.com/blog/top-takeaways-traffic-and-conversion-summit/

A LOT happened over the last 3 days at Traffic & Conversion Summit 2019.

But over the course of 119 sessions, we noticed some common themes and takeaways that we think every marketer should know…

Takeaway #1: The Marketing World is About to Be Massively Disrupted

In 2019, we are living in a time of innovation and disruption. Marketers who don’t create a movement will be left behind.

During his Day 1 Keynote, Ryan Deiss outlined his strategy to ensure DigitalMarketer is one of those game changers.

He is implementing one strategy: Do the complete opposite of what used to work really well.

Everything that is fast becomes slow
Everything that is big becomes small
Everything that is small becomes big

Let’s use DM as a case study to see how Ryan is applying this strategy so you can use it as inspiration in your business…

To Shift from Fast to Slow, DigitalMarketer Is:

Placing emphasis on journeys (i.e. the Customer Value Journey) over funnels.

This is being done by changing automated customer interactions to one-on-one conversations. We use automation to start the conversation with our customers and move it toward a human interaction.

Plus, we’re removing the focus from scalable ideas and trackable strategies to ideas that don’t scale and strategies that can’t be tracked. Like when we launched 2 new podcasts last year. We’re doing this because it feels like the right thing to do for our customers.

To Shift from Big to Small, DigitalMarketer Is:

Segmenting our customers into the following categories:

And we’re using longer form fields to do just that. It may sacrifice some conversions in the process, but it’s leading to better data and more qualified leads.

Then, we use the customer’s self-identification to pair them with the best DigitalMarketer products for them (i.e. WarRoom, certifications, the Certified Partner program, etc.).

To Shift from Small to Big, DigitalMarketer Is:

Asking what do we fundamentally believe to be true about the universe and our place in it?

In 2019, marketers need to create movements.

Don’t tell stories about your product—change the stories the customers tell about themselves.

Movements matter and if you want your business to matter, start a movement.

We’re doing this with our products, like with our newly launched company and product, Praxio.

(NOTE: Need a helping hand with your digital marketing efforts? Or maybe you just want proven, actionable marketing tools, tactics, and templates to implement in your business? Check out the latest deal from DigitalMarketer, and you will be on your way to helping your business grow.)

Takeaway #2: There Are 2 Things in Digital Marketing that Will Never Change

Ryan closed out his Day 1 Keynote with a reminder to all marketers: no matter what the future of digital marketing holds, there will always be 2 certainties:

We will always need to generate traffic
We will always need to convert that traffic into revenue

It all comes down to traffic and conversion.

So at the end of the day, it all comes down to this.

No matter how your company may change in the future, no matter what you’re implementing next, it all comes down to traffic and conversion.

So make sure you keep traffic and conversion at the core of your digital marketing strategy.

Takeaway #3: Use Authority to Capture the Heart, Mind & Wallet of Your Audience

In his Day 2 Keynote, Ryan reminded people about the importance of creating a movement.

But, you can’t create a movement unless you have authority.

No one will deny the importance of creating authority for your brand. But building authority is easier said than done.

So how do you do it?

There are 5 elements of authority:

1. A Plan

It is impossible to have a movement without a plan. Nobody wants to follow a leader without a map.

Do you have a plan people can tell others about?

Ask yourself, what is the step-by-step plan for success that you have created for your clients and customers? 

2. Answer Your Customers’ Questions

You need to come down and meet your customers where they are by answering their specific questions.

Why is Dave Ramsey so popular? One reason is because he answers the same questions over, and over… and over, again. He may be answering the same few questions about personal finance, but the question comes from a different person each time.

So answer your customers’ questions, no matter how many times you’ve said the same thing. New customers will have the same questions.

Use AnswerThePublic.com to find the questions your customers are asking and use Quora to answer those questions. Or create a FAQ section on your homepage like we do here…

So, ask yourself, what are 10-20 ultra-specific questions your customers are asking that you can answer?

3. Speak in Absolutes

Tell your customers what they can and can’t do. This is a strategy you’ll see Dave Ramsey, Grant Cardone, and Gary Vaynerchuk using.

They speak in absolutes. Just like Gary does here.

Love ’em or hate ’em. Agree with them or not, they stand for something. Speaking in absolutes tells people what you stand for.

If you qualify everything you say, you may never be wrong, and you may never piss anyone off, but you will risk sounding like you don’t stand for anything.

If you stand for everything, you stand for nothing, sort of thing.

So, use these words to convey your authority:

All
None
Always
Now
Never
Period
Guaranteed
I promise
Going to happen
Fact
Evil
Dumb
Stupid
Genius
Best
Greatest
Worst
One thing
Everything
Nothing
Everyone
No one

When you start getting haters, this is when you know your absolutes are working. This also means you have to be prepared to support your absolutes and be prepared to be challenged.

So answer this, what absolutes are you willing to maintain even in the face of haters?

4. Define Your Core Beliefs

Your core belief speaks to your place in the universe. How would you define your place in the universe? Your business’ place?

This belief is the reason people want to buy or work with your business. If your core belief aligns with your audiences’ core belief, they will get behind what you are saying and they will become a customer.

For example, at DigitalMarketer our core belief is that the best product or service should win.

Think about and answer, what do you fundamentally believe to be true about the universe and your place in it? Your brands place in it?

5. Change Their Rites or Rituals

There are 3 options to get people to become raving fans of your brand.

Option 1: Get People to Do Something They Normally Wouldn’t Do

Tony Robbins does this by getting people to walk on fire.

Dave Ramsey does this by getting people to call into his radio show and yell, “I’m debt free!”.

None of these behaviors are “normal.”

But getting people to do just that builds a community. And there’s power in that.

(RELATED: 8 Essential Strategies to Build a Thriving Customer Community)

Option 2: Get People to Alter an Existing Routine

Is coffee part of your morning ritual?

Do you start your coffee maker before you’ve even used the bathroom?

What about putting butter in that freshly brewed cup of coffee? Is that also part of your routine?

It is for some people.

Bulletproof Coffee got people to make butter coffee. They nailed this option and altered a pre-existing routine for many of us.

And because of it, Bulletproof Coffee created a movement.

Option 3: Get People to “Lick” Your Brand by Giving Them Free Promotional Items

As a kid, did you ever lick something to claim it?

Your big brother wants the last cookie. Nope! Lick. Mine. Claimed.

So along those lines, how can you get your customers to “lick” your brand? To claim you.

Offering free incentive items is one way to do it.

Beachbody is the perfect example of this—if you send in a before and after picture, they’ll send you a t-shirt. A t-shirt that you can wear with pride for all the hard work you’ve put into changing your body.

It serves as a trophy or reward for your customer. And it also serves as a promotional item for your brand.

And promotional items start conversations. “Cool t-shirt. Where’d you get it?” And with that, people are talking about your brand. And it all happened naturally.

At DigitalMarketer, we give away stickers of our branded gears. And people put them on their laptops. Customers send in pictures of it, and we see the gears throughout Austin where we’re based. People are claiming us.

So finally, what customs and rituals should you promote and institutionalize?

Keep in mind, it’s hard to embody all 5 of these elements of authority. Really, only the world’s dominant religions have come close.

But if you can start bringing in these elements to your overall business strategy, you’ll see positive results.

Start by focusing on 1 element to build your authority.

Takeaway #4: It’s Good to Be Better, But It’s Better to Be Different

Do you want to fascinate? To cut through the noise and grab and hold people’s attention.

What business wouldn’t? Which is why we asked the Queen of Fascination, Sally Hogshead, to kick off Day 3 of T&C.

Sally’s expertise lies in helping brands discover what makes them more fascinating than the competition.

In her Day 3 Opening Keynote, Sally explained fascination is an intense state of focus where a person is bewitched and held captive by what they’re seeing.

What qualities make people fascinated by you and showcase you as intensely valuable?

This can be a hard question for many to answer. You can start by focusing in on what makes you different. As Sally said throughout her presentation, “It’s good to be better, but it’s better to be different.”

She also dove into the Personal Brand Archetypes. This is how the world sees you. This is what makes you different and therefore fascinating. Based off of your Primary Advantage and your Secondary Advantage, you’ll understand what makes you captivating.

For example, Ryan Deiss, CEO of DigitalMarketer, is positioned as a thought leader in digital marketing. Why? Because he is the “Maestro” personality archetype and is seen with power and prestige. The adjectives that best describe Ryan are ambitious, focused, and confident.

Ryan can use these words to differentiate himself from the competition.

What YOU Took Away from T&C

But we weren’t the only ones who had key takeaways. We loved hearing the aha moments our attendees had, like…

Brands that tell stories create movements and go on to rule the world.

Business partners should complement each other, not be copies of each other. Perry Belcher pointed out the reason he, Ryan, and Roland have been so successful is because of their varying personality traits that cumulate to a power trio.

How do you save your business? By putting in the work. Choose 3 specific takeaways from the 119 presentations at Traffic & Conversion 2019, and start implementing those in your business.

Remember what Ryan said in his Day One Opening Keynote? Everything big needs to become smaller.

If you can get people to feel something, you can get them to take their wallet out.

Last Key Takeaway

There is nothing that is out of our league.

As business owners, and specifically as humans, we have the ability to solve any problem or adversity that we are facing. That was the theme of Sir Richard Branson’s Day 1 Closing Keynote.

Case in point, after wrapping up his keynote, Branson planned to fly back to Necker Island to meet with entrepreneurs who are trying to decrease the amount of carbon in the atmosphere by figuring out a way to vacuum it out and transform it into something less harmful.

If there’s anything we want you to take away from the 10th Traffic & Conversion Summit, it’s this:

“Changing the world begins with a small group of people who simply refuse to accept the unacceptable.” ~Richard Branson

See you next year!

(NOTE: Need a helping hand with your digital marketing efforts? Or maybe you just want proven, actionable marketing tools, tactics, and templates to implement in your business? Check out the latest deal from DigitalMarketer, and you will be on your way to helping your business grow.)

The post Top 10 Takeaways from Traffic & Conversion Summit 2019 Every Marketer Should Know appeared first on DigitalMarketer.

0

Ryan Deiss on the End of Marketing As We Know It (And I Feel Fine)

sourced from: https://www.digitalmarketer.com/blog/end-of-marketing-as-we-know-it/

There is a huge event happening that directly affects digital marketers, agencies, entrepreneurs, and founders.

As Ryan Deiss pointed out during his opening keynote at Traffic & Conversion Summit 2019, change occurs in a cyclical pattern. Just like the seasons change, the world of marketing is changing in phases.

And right now, we’re at the end of a cycle—which means the opportunity for innovation and disruption is the largest that it’ll be for years.

To learn more about this opportunity and how to make it work for you (and not against you), watch Ryan Deiss’ opening keynote from Traffic & Conversion Summit 2019:

Ryan covers:

Why it’s the end of marketing as we know it… and why he’s not worried about it
3 digital marketing strategies to help you rise above the noise
A brief history of digital marketing and what the future of digital marketing holds

Don’t have time to watch an hour-long presentation? Read on to learn the highlights from Ryan’s keynote!

(NOTE: Need a helping hand with your digital marketing efforts? Or maybe you just want proven, actionable marketing tools, tactics, and templates to implement in your business? Check out the latest deal from DigitalMarketer, and you will be on your way to helping your business grow.)

The 5 Phases of Technology

History has shown us this cycle over and over again.

In 1801, the first steam engine was unveiled.

In 1830, railroads were opened across the US and UK.

By 1880, there were 2,000+ railroad companies causing a necessary standardization that regulated the industry in 1886.

By 1906, all of the rail lines were owned by just 7 entities.

Alexander Bell patented the first phone in 1876.

His patent expired in 1894, and immediately 6,000 phone companies were launched.

Today, there are only 4 major phone service providers.

We see the same pattern with the newspaper industry and the automobile industry.

The world is moving in cyclical phases which means—technology is too.

There are 5 phases of technology:

Phase 1: Discovery and Invention

In Phase 1, there is a new technology that benefits an industry or is even so large that it changes society.

To succeed during Phase 1, you have to be in the right place, at the right time.

The invention of the steam engine and the phone are examples of Phase 1.

Phase 2: Proliferation

The proliferation phase is the gold rush and becomes the wild west of the new technology.

In an ideal world, our business enters at this stage. Here, we have the first mover advantage.

It’s during this phase that businesses spring up and grow at a rapid pace, like the railroads in the US and UK. And—unfortunately for those like Alexander Bell—patents expire and entrepreneurs rush to launch their own company causing a ton of new companies to start.

Phase 3: Standardization

By Phase 3, there are so many companies selling the new product that the economy, government, or industry itself has to create regulations for the benefit of everybody.

It’s at this stage that a lot of companies fail because they don’t get with the program.

Instead of adapting to standardization, they fight the change and go out of business or get bought up, which leads to the next phase…

Phase 4: Consolidation

During consolidation, companies get gobbled up and the industry becomes consolidated in the hands of only a handful of dominant companies.

For instance, the 2,000+ railroad companies and 6,000+ phone companies of the past merged into 7 railroad companies and 4 phone companies.

This is the phase where the rich get richer.

Phase 5: Innovation Or Disruption

In the final stage, the company that was once on the cusp of the brand new has become so normal, so part of the every day that the companies that own them become comfortable and the level of competition that once existed goes away.

This is a crucial stage because there are only 2 directions to go: avoiding or embracing innovation.

Companies rather become stagnant and will have a harder time competing when a new player comes onto the stage and starts to disrupt the status quo.

Or companies lean into innovation and push the boundaries of the current technology and create a brand new cycle.

The process of discovery and invention begins again.

This cycle has been happening for centuries, and it is happening in the digital marketing world…

The History of Digital Marketing
Discovery: 1994-2000

This is when the first banner ad was displayed (and had a 78% click-through rate!!!)…

…the Dotcom bubble placed the internet in the news and Google AdWords launched.

Proliferation: 2001-2009

During proliferation, the first (of many) mommy blogs were created, WordPress launched, and the major social media players were established (Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter).

Facebooks ads rolled out and the first iPhone was released. 

Standardization: 2010-2014

In 2009, Google introduced its newest ad ranking feature, Quality Score. This forced advertisers to completely change tactics as Google now favored high-quality ads and landing pages. Paired with Panda, this standardization is now referred to as, “ The Google Slap.”

During this time, Facebook started to audit advertisements, banning dating sites and weapons in 2014.

The whole era can be best described as a giant flaming pile of poop for marketers as the rug was ripped out from under them.

And then it got worse…

Consolidation: 2015-2019

The technology wave of consolidation placed Google and Facebook at the top of the advertisement world. They control 84% of the ad space, allowing them to push their prices up.

Facebook’s ad revenue doubled in 2009 and 2018. Think about this… they doubled their revenue without doubling the number of users. And they did this in a very short amount of time… by increasing their prices.

Then came Amazon, who is accountable for nearly 50% of all US ecommerce sales. FIFTY PERCENT!

Startups are currently spending almost 40 cents of every VC dollar on Google, Facebook, and Amazon advertisements.

Why?

Because the average Facebook organic reach is 0.5%.

In 2019, traffic costs are up and conversions and engagement are down. And they have been for some time now.

The question digital marketers are asking themselves today is, do we innovate or disrupt?

Innovation or Disrupt: 2019-?

“Today digital becomes king.” ~Ronan Shields

2019 is the year that US digital ad spend will surpass offline ad spend. Digital marketing is disrupting the world of marketing.

The digital marketers, agencies, entrepreneurs, and founders who don’t want to accept that it’s time to disrupt are going to be left behind.

DigitalMarketer is not one of them. Change is here and Ryan’s strategy to become a disruptor is simple. And it can be applied in your business, too.

Do the opposite of what used to work:

Everything that is fast, needs to be slow.

Everything that is big, needs to be small.

Everything that is small, needs to be big.

What does Ryan mean? Let’s take a look…

Strategy #1: Shifting from Fast to Slow

There are 3 ways to make this shift.

Fast to Slow
Automation to Conversation
Scalable to Unscalable and Untrackable

Let’s start with…

1. Fast to Slow

Funnels need to be shifted into a journey.

I have nothing against funnels, but in 2019, they focus too heavily on value extraction (how do we get customers to buy?) instead of completing the Customer Value Journey (how do we get customers to sell our product without being asked?)

The Journey starts with the customer coming to us in an incomplete and sad state and shifts to them being in a complete, happy state.

This is known as the Before & After.

In the “Before” state, the customer is discontent in some way. They might be in pain, bored, frightened, or unhappy for any number of reasons.

In the “After” state—life is better. They are free of pain, entertained, or unafraid of what previously plagued them. All thanks to your product or service that solved their problem.

And to get them to buy your product, you need to move them through your Customer Value Journey…

The Customer Value Journey

The Customer Value Journey starts at Step 1 with Awareness and moves to Step 8: Promote.

To get customers to sell your product by becoming a promoter, you need them to be successful. You need to help them get to their ideal After state.

Have you mapped your customers’ Journey? You can do it for free (without having to opt-in) here.

2. Automation to Conversation

I’m sure you’ve heard Newton’s famous law that for every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction.

The action in the past decade has been toward automation, and we are about to see a significant reaction to it.

The reaction is going to come as a solution, talk to your customers.

Chat with them on Facebook, use Drift to automate chat conversations on your website and have bots filter (but not replace) basic human interaction.

Or, here’s a crazy idea, answer the phone.

Here’s an even crazier idea, send emails without links—this feels more like a personal conversation.

Ryan believes the future of digital marketing belongs to companies that are willing to invest in real-time, one-to-one interactions.

Now, there are 2 questions to ask yourself during this time of disruption:

Do you know how much it costs you to acquire a conversation?
How much is a conversation worth?

Answer those questions to help your company focus and grow.

3. Scalable to Unscalable & Untrackable

If you want to kill any idea, say, “It doesn’t scale.”

What “it doesn’t scale” really means is—we don’t know if it’s working and we don’t know how to track it.

But if you’re not careful, saying something doesn’t scale can hurt you in the long run by killing a good idea.

Here’s a new idea, do the things you cannot track.

Untrackable Idea #1: Send Emails Without Links

Instead of links, ask for replies or ask if your customer has any questions.

The response you get can lead to a conversation that generates a sale.

Or at the very least, can help strengthen your relationship with your customer and continue to move them through your Customer Value Journey.

Untrackable Idea #2: Managed Facebook Groups

Do you have a Facebook group? Assign a team member to manage that community so it becomes a community that delivers value.

Does your community actually make you any money? It’s hard to tell. We’re unsure if our private community does.

But we know it helps retain customers.

So while we may not be able to track how much, we know the DigitalMarketer Engage Community makes us money through retention and happy, successful customers.

Untrackable Idea #3: Post Unrelated Content

At DigitalMarketer, one of our most popular blog posts is, “100 Books Every Marketer Should Read.”

And this post actually helped generate a lot of buzz for Traffic & Conversion.

What does it have to do with selling tickets to the event?

Not a whole lot.

But it was unrelated content that our customers wanted and responded to when we distributed it throughout our channels.

Untrackable Idea #4: Answer Stupid Questions

When you’ve been doing something a while, the easy, intro questions start to sound pretty basic and stupid to you. You may even get tired of answering them because they’re not what you want to talk about.

But that doesn’t matter because they’re the questions your customers want to talk about.

Find ways to answer questions that your customers inevitably have.

For example, you can use Quora to answer questions about your industry or place a “Questions and Answers” section on your homepage, like we do here…

Untrackable Idea #5: One-on-One Onboarding

Assign a team member to onboard each new client.

Give them that special white glove treatment and make them feel special. We do this for the highest level of our membership.

Untrackable Idea #6: Write a Book… or 2

Writing a book is a painful process with absolutely no trackability—do it anyway.

It exposes your brand to new audiences.

Ryan wrote Invisible Selling Machine years ago, and people still ask him to sign it. Since then, he’s worked on Digital Marketing for Dummies and another book is in the works.

Untrackable Idea #7: Publish a Podcast

DigitalMarketer has 2 podcasts, Perpetual Traffic and The DigitalMarketer Podcast, and helped launch Roland Frasier’s Business Lunch, and we have absolutely no idea if these podcasts are helping us acquire more clients.

But the podcasts have helped build the DigitalMarketer brand and expose us to different audiences.

All of these ideas are very hard to track and therefore, hard to scale. But we do them because they feel right. They feel like the right thing to do for our customers.

More businesses should start doing things that feel right for their customers.

If you want to know more about becoming an expert at these techniques, read this book.

Strategy #2: Big to Small

At DigitalMarketer we’ve created a system that segments our customers. And we’ve done this by adding in more fields as a customer signs up for our products—be it for our free membership of Lab or one of our products.

While this longer form has decreased our conversions, it has increased the value we are able to deliver to our customers.

And we’re happy to accept lower conversion rates for better data. We’re able to get better customer segmentation.

And through this customer segmentation, we’re able to…

Figure out the best products to pair customers to so we can help them reach their ideal After state
Increase the number of customers in those programs
And get a better idea of the ROI of a customer

Strategy #3: Small to Big

Fact: No one willingly follows a small idea.

But as companies have niched down, their focus has become so granular that they’ve stopped thinking big. They’ve become kings of tiny, little ant hills.

As marketers, we need to start thinking big again.

Marketers need to define new categories for themselves.

Drift has defined a new category of conversational marketing and entrepreneurs like Sir Richard Branson have defined a new category of celebrity entrepreneurship. These are examples of companies and brands thinking bigger.

Want to get in on this? Ryan suggests reading Play Bigger, the playbook for category creation.

In 2019, Marketers need to create movements.

Don’t tell stories about your product—change the stories the customers tell about themselves.

Movements matter and if you want your business to matter, start a movement.

Ask yourself, what do we fundamentally believe to be true about the universe and our place in it?

But despite all that’s changing or will change, in digital marketing, we can be certain that 2 things will never change:

The need to generate traffic
The need to convert that traffic into revenue

(NOTE: Need a helping hand with your digital marketing efforts? Or maybe you just want proven, actionable marketing tools, tactics, and templates to implement in your business? Check out the latest deal from DigitalMarketer, and you will be on your way to helping your business grow.)

The post Ryan Deiss on the End of Marketing As We Know It (And I Feel Fine) appeared first on DigitalMarketer.