Email marketing can be a tough gig.
To successfully reach their goal (you do have goals for your marketing campaigns, right?) the savvy marketer needs to reduce the effect of multiple barriers to entry. Think of it as a big funnel that gradually reduces the volume of visitors at every stage:
Does the content bypass spam filters and work reasonably consistently across most email apps? Did it get opened? Did it get read? Did viewers click through to the website? Did they perform the action you desired?
At every point you need to maximise the number of viewers making it through to the next stage in the funnel.
Just like everyone else, we get a lot of spam.
Most of it comes through our email address, but Gmail tends to weed out almost all of it. We get a little through our contact forms, typically overseas companies spruiking SEO services.
I always enjoy the delicious irony of being sent unsolicited mail telling me I need SEO services. Clearly the spammer managed to find me, surely that should mean regular people can too, right?
Lately I've been getting a different type of spam. SEO must be on the way out, because at least a half-dozen emails a day are pushing design services and PSD to HTML conversion.
Normally, I just mark them as junk and move on, but yesterday's influx gave me hours of amusement thanks to the spammers at CSS Chopper.
The first part of our series on getting the most from AdWords focused on the basics of creating more clickable advertising. Part two looks at where to send your traffic what to do with it once it arrives!
Create relevant landing pages
How many times have you clicked on an ad, only to arrive at a generic page that seemingly has nothing to do with the search you performed?
You hate it. I hate it - everyone who uses Google hates clicking through to irrelevant pages.
Guess what? Google hates it too.
How many times have you performed a search for a product or service and been delivered sponsored results for something completely unrelated? (Locksmiths, I'm looking at you!)
It's exactly this kind of issue that causes businesses to lose faith in PPC advertising. When a user is served ads that don't meet their needs both the user and the business become disillusioned as to the value of search marketing.
Fortunately for all parties involved, Google has a vested interest in serving relevant ads to users. Google provides a strong financial incentive for businesses to ensure their ads are properly crafted and relevant to the needs of searchers.
Here are some simple tactics for ensuring a better CTR (Click Through Rate) while saving money on your online marketing.
One of the biggest failings many small businesses fall into with Search Engine Marketing is overestimating their name recognition, what could be called 'brand awareness'.
If you have a small business (let's call it "Tom's Bike Parts") in an area with even a reasonable-size population, you can rest assured that no-one knows who you are. That's not to say you won't have a loyal group of customers - you will. That's not to say that the regular foot traffic won't be aware that there's a bike store along their daily route - they might be.
But, except for that group of loyal customers, no-one knows your name.
So why are all your marketing efforts directed at people who are already your customers?
At the start of this month, we reported on the ongoing rise of social media among baby boomers in Australia. Now it's time to look at local search and the benefits for Aussie business.
According to the latest Comscore search report, 10.29 billion online searches were conducted in the US alone in June 2010. Fortunately, Comscore also includes some choice snippets regarding local and mobile search, incredibly relevant data for real-world businesses.
Given that the population of Australians online is roughly 5% of the US, it's possible for us to extrapolate what this means for local businesses.
I'll give you the short version: local search is on the rise. If you own a local business you need to start making use of local search now.