» Top 10 Ways to Refresh Your Marketing Strategy

Top 10 Ways to Refresh Your Marketing Strategy - WeddingWire EDU BlogAs the end of the year approaches, it’s a great time to re-examine your marketing strategy! Small changes to your marketing strategies and tactics can often have a big impact on your business. It doesn’t have to take a lot of effort to update the way your business comes across to potential customers!

These 10 quick tips address the various areas where you can easily refresh your marketing strategy:

Social Media Marketing

10.  Refresh your “Following” list. Whenever a business sets up a company page on social media, one of the first actions taken is to follow or “Like” other friendly businesses or thought leaders – and then it’s forgotten about. Take some time to update the pages/accounts you’re following on each network. You’ll be surprised at the new ideas that can be sparked by hearing yet another point of view, and many businesses will follow or “like” you back!

9.  Add social widgets to your website or blog. Make it easy for your website visitors or blog readers to become a fan on your social media accounts by adding each network’s widget to your website. Widgets like Facebook’s Like box, Twitter’s Embedded Timelines and Pinterest’s buttons and widgets are all fairly easy to add to your website and allow your visitors to find your account and interact with it right from the page they’re already on.

Video Marketing

8.  Create a video about your business. Even before you meet a potential client face to face, your website or Storefront is representing your brand. You probably have plenty of content about your business and photos of your work, but have you considered the power of video marketing? Try using our easy-to-use Video Builder tool to create a video with your own photos and music of your choice.

Search Marketing

7.  Check your website’s health. Go through your website and take inventory! Which pages have broken links? Are there any pages that load slowly? These issues factor into the quality of your website when it’s being evaluated by a search engine, so make sure your website is up-to-date and that everything is working properly.

6.  Optimize your blog posts for search engines. If you’re writing blog posts on a regular basis, that’s a great step towards getting your business’s expertise out there. The work doesn’t stop there, though! Make your content more visible by identifying and researching the keywords visitors would type in to find you and add those to your blog posts. Make sure they’re in the title, content and meta data. People searching those keywords will be more likely to find your educational and helpful content!

Continue reading

» Why Your Small Business Needs Video

We’ve talked about the importance of your online presence in the past, as it’s a powerful way to promote your brand. Even before you meet a potential client face to face, your website or Storefront is representing your brand. Particularly for small businesses, the type of online content you choose has a big impact on the public’s perception of your business. You probably have plenty of content about your business and photos of your work, but have you considered the power of video marketing?

In the past, video marketing has been avoided because producing high-quality videos can be expensive. Small business owners rarely had the time or money to spend on video marketing – until recently. Premium WeddingWire Pros have access to high-quality video with our Video Builder!

Why Your Small Business Needs Video

Our Video Builder tools allows you to create unlimited, high-quality videos using your event photos and customize your video with descriptions and branding. All you need to do is select a theme, add photos, add a soundtrack from our library, and you have a video to share!

Have you used our Video Builder yet? If you’re not sure whether or not video is the right move for your company, our friends at Animoto have a great presentation on the importance of video marketing.

Here are some of the most important reasons why video should be an indispensable part of every small business owner’s toolkit!

1. Video sticks with both audio and visual learners. Think back to school: some people learn better from seeing, while others learn better from hearing. In fact, 65% of people identify themselves as visual learners and 30% identify themselves as auditory learners, while 5% identify themselves as kinesthetic learners. By those statistics, video reaches 95% of people in their preferred learning style!

2. It’s the next big thing. Of the $40 billion spent on online ads in 2012, video ads were the vast majority. Even the big social networks have caught on to the power of video content – Facebook, Instagram and Vine have all capitalized on the shareable nature of video. What are you waiting for?

3. Video packages your message in an entertaining format. Video combines the text you would use to describe your business or tell your story, visual content about your business and music. You’ll stand out from other small businesses with professional-quality, engaging videos.

4. Video is having a larger and larger impact on search engine optimization. A link in a lower position with video will get more clicks than a link in a higher position without video – meaning that if you’re a small business struggling to increase your search rankings, video might provide a good boost.

With easy-to-use tools like the Video Builder, there’s just no excuse to hold off on video anymore!

Get started today! Have questions? We’re here to help.

Already using the Video Builder? Check out our top video marketing tips to better showcase your business using this medium!

» What a Relay Race Can Tell Us About Marketing

This article was written by WeddingWire Education Guru, Alan Berg. Alan has over 20 years experience in wedding related sales and marketing, and is a member of the National Speakers Association, an author, and founder of The Wedding Industry Leaders Conference, an organization dedicated to the educating and consulting of highly motivated individuals and businesses. Learn more at http://alanberg.com/

relay-race

I’ve often said that Wedding Pros have more in common than they think when it comes to their marketing. It transcends categories, with photographers, florists, caterers, and dress shops all using the same basic principles when it comes to attracting new business. It also transcends borders, cultures and languages.

I spoke about marketing at a WeddingWire Networking Night and I used the analogy of a relay race where the baton is passed from one runner to the next.

Only instead of runners, you have these steps: advertising/marketing/social media > your website > email/phone > you.

Your marketing is only as strong as its weakest link, where the “baton” is getting dropped the most.

Follow the bouncing baton

Your prospects find out about you through your advertising, marketing and/or social media. Their next likely step is your website. If they like what they see on your site they email you, use your online availability checker or fill out your contact form. You then have an email conversation with them (phone if you’re lucky). If you do that well you get them in for an appointment. If the appointment goes well you get the sale. At each of those points the baton is getting passed. At any, or all, of those points the baton can get dropped.

If your ad is not compelling or well designed, they won’t go to your website. If they don’t like your social media presence they’ll move on. If they do get to your website, but aren’t moved to take action, once again, the baton has been dropped. If they do like what they see on your site and contact you, but your email communication skills are weak, you don’t get the appointment. If you do get the appointment but your sales skills are lacking, you don’t get the sale.

You don’t have to get it right every time

Very few people get it right at every touch-point, which means you’re losing potential clients at almost every step. You can never get it right every time, so the goal is to minimize the drop-offs and maximize the “conversion”. Conversion is getting someone to take action. Clicking from your WeddingWire Storefront to your website is taking action. Clicking from your website to contact you is taking action. Engaging in an email conversation or phone call is taking action. Scheduling an appointment is taking action. And of course, buying is taking action. Those are all positive actions. 

Seeing your ad but passing it by and clicking on another ad is also taking action. Visiting your website and leaving without seeing any other pages (it’s called bouncing) is also taking action. Emailing you but not agreeing to an appointment is taking action. And of course, coming in for an appointment and not buying is also taking action. These are all negative actions and they’re costing you business.

Accentuate the positive

Continue reading