Case: Wills Writing Maidenhead

Client: Wills Writing Maidenhead

Owner: Tony Coyle (Tony is an amazing person and working with him was a delight. Everything was done in time and his collaborative personality helped all the way.)

The Project: Tony is a qualified Wills Writer who can provide advice and guidance in other services as well but for a digital marketer like myself, this business poses some challenges:

  1. This is a local business, he acts around Maidenhead only
  2. People are referred to other will writers by financial advisers and mortgage brokers, who didn’t know him
  3. He wasn’t known even from Google (you wouldn’t find his website even if you searched for “Will writers Maidenhead”)

Overview: I met Tony in a networking event and he did the best presentation in the room. The interesting thing is that he had started his Will writing business as a partner of APS and hadn’t gone digital at that point. The result of this project was so successful that his website is getting traffic until today, even after only a few days of work, 2 months ago.

We need to remember that having a website does not mean there will be business coming through.

The Program

The plan was to start with targeted directory submission and move on to content plan and distribution after that.

As it happens, will writers don’t put too much effort into digital marketing and Tony has seen good ranking results for his website after the first task: directory submission.

The Results

We ran some SEO services on his website and within two weeks he was ranked number 1 on Google for “Will writers Maidenhead”. Of course, I knew this SEO program was going to be successful, but I couldn’t imagine it would be this much. (Now we will need to run new SEO campaigns, the number 1 ranking isn’t there anymore, but still pretty good.)

There are still other elements we could work on to make his business a national sensation, but I suppose this is true with all businesses.

Reason for Success

A good SEO needs to craft, carefully, all elements of the actions taken. The directories need to handpicked so only relevant ones are used (remember, quality not quantity). The description of the business needs to be consistent across all sites, especially Google Maps. Pictures are important as well and, like the business description, it needs to be consistent on every channel.

Vision for Next Steps

Researching keywords and content online is difficult because if you go to Buzzsumo and type “will writing” you get things like:

We need to go around that by picking keywords carefully and studying what others are doing make sure to put up a huge filter in your brain.

If Tony were to have an FAQ (frequently asked questions) on his website, here is what I would recommend him doing:

  • This is a consulting service, where the will writer offers advice to get the will in shape for future events. In summary, Tony needs to sell his advice.
  • Here are some of the articles I would like to see on his website:
    • Why free wills can be dangerous?
      • Too many people search for free wills online, we need to tackle that first
    • Should you only hire a solicitor as a will writer?
      • Professional advice can be offered by non solicitors, in this article we need to say why
    • Should I get an early funeral plan?
      • Let’s be adults here, this is not a negative thought, it is a financially smart move to make early in life. Challenge with this article is to make the “energy” still positive while talking about such a sensitive subject
    • What should you consider about your children when writing your will?
      • Here we start providing some advice to show all options in some of the most searched subjects about wills
    • I’m moving abroad, how can I make my will still be valid?
      • Move free advice

 

There is always something else we could be doing on a website to make it stand out. The important thing is to make sure you do one thing at a time, measure it, and then move on to the next, rip all the benefits of every single effort.

Thank you Tony, this was great!

Case: The Clique Booths

Client: The Clique Booths

Owner: Ali Letts (Ali is a powerhouse: She works full time, launches a business and lead a family… all together and successfully. We all have much to learn from her.)

The Project: The Clique Booths is a photo booth renting business that Ali started in Henley-on-Thames. Their differential is the quality of the pictures and the looks of the booth itself.

Overview: We have adopted 2 organic strategies to increase web traffic to the website: Forum and Social Commenting. Today, 07/08/2018, you can still see the results of only a few days of effort made 2 months ago.

The Business Needs

The business needed to become more known and grow organically, not via online ads.

The Strategy

We came up with the idea that our online efforts would aim to attract the attention of event and party planners around Thames Valley area.

The Solution

To run 2 online campaigns:

  1. Business Listing
  2. Forum Commenting
  3. Social Commenting

1. Business Listing

The first thing is to make sure we have the website being listed in all important, free, directories (like Google Maps, Yelp and others). This increases visibility and makes the whole business look more credible.

The only thing we need to be aware of is that the Yell (formerly Yellow Pages) will call you and push hard in digital marketing programs I wouldn’t agree to.

2. Forum Commenting

This is an interesting organic type of outreach: we find where event planners hangout online, signup there, and comment on their questions, make questions of our own and attract some attention.

This is a hard work that proved to be successful because a lead came from this campaign, after around 100 comments and interactions.

3. Social Commenting

Another interesting organic type of outreach: we used Pinterest, Twitter and Google Plus to comment on relevant posts from other people (always placing a link to The Clique Booths website). How successful was that? Super successful! As it happens, we discovered that Google is listening to Twitter and Google Plus (don’t know which one is a priority for Google Search, but I can imagine it is Google Plus, although I can’t tell for sure right now). This means the website started to rank on the keywords we used in this campaign.

I’ll explain: On every comment, we would add a keyword that Ali wanted to rank on. There were 4 keywords in total, and each comment we made contained at least one of them. Boom! After only 100 social comments… Google started ranking her website on those keywords.

No lead came from those comments directly, but it was a successful campaign nonetheless.

The Result

In 5 days of listing, forums and social commenting, The Clique Booths has got a lead and started ranking in Google Search, organically.

 

Social Commenting Experiment

Social commenting means you will join someone else’s conversation on social networks with the goal of driving traffic and business to your website.

People who work in marketing don’t really talk about this tactic as something useful, and that comes from lack of knowledge… and I can prove it.

The Client

The client I selected to run a social commenting for is The Clique Booths. The idea was to get event and party planners.

The Program

A PA would be hired to enter selected social networks, search for posts about the subjects we want to comment on, and publish a comment that is relevant to the discussion and also links back to Clique Booth’s website.

The Challenge

  1. I needed to come up with a system that would be done by a PA, not by me. (Trying to scale the operation).
  2. To find relevant posts for weddings, company parties and general event management topics.
  3. To write useful comments to the discussion and link the whole thing to the business.

Of course, this turned out to be a little expensive because every single comment needed to be crafted for each discussion, but in the next few lines of this article, I will share with you exactly how I tackled this problem and results afterward.

The Project

I have created a spreadsheet with every single piece of information necessary for me to follow or even for a PA to do on its own.

I have created:

  • 10 steps that should be followed in detail, covering every single situation (tackling challenge 1, above.)
  • 11 keywords that should be used to search for relevant discussions (challenge 2, above).
  • 10 possible comments to be used, tackling the challenge 3, above.

Take a look at the structure of the spreadsheet:

The PA would search for the keywords in each of the selected social networks, find relevant posts, comment on them and register in another part of the spreadsheet:

The Result

The PA would comment on 10 posts in each of the 4 networks, every day. This is 40 comments for 3 days, which makes 120 comments in total.

The results? Google started ranking on the desired keywords:

Tip: From this experiment, I’m comfortable to say that if you are serious about SEO, you need to be doing social commenting. This is a free, organic and successful marketing tactic that we all need to use.

Don’t know about you, but I was impressed.

Forum Commenting Experiment

I have decided to spend some time testing an old type of online marketing: Forum commenting.

Is it effective? Do people read them? Do people click their links?

This is the story:

The Client

My friend Ali Lets needed a boost on her new venture: The Clique Booths. The Clique Booths’ website doesn’t have a landing page so directing traffic to the home page is a long shot… but better than no traffic at all.

The Program

The idea was to publish comments to forum discussions where we would try to be useful for the whole discussion at the same time as we would place a link to the Clique Booths’ website.

The Challenge

  1.  I needed to come up with a system that would be done by a PA, not by me. (Trying to scale the operation).
  2. To find relevant discussions for weddings, company parties and general event management topics.
  3. To write useful comments to the discussion and link the whole thing to the business.

Of course, this turned out to be a little expensive because every single comment needed to be crafted for each discussion, but in the next few lines of this article I will share with you exactly how I tackled this problem and results afterward.

The Project

I have created a spreadsheet with every single piece of information necessary for a me to follow or even for a PA to do on its own.

I have created:

  • 10 steps that should be followed in detail, covering every single situation (tackling challenge 1, above.)
  • 4 keywords that should be used to search for relevant discussions (challenge 2, above).
  • 10 possible comments to be used, tackling the challenge 3, above.

Take a look at the structure of the spreadsheet:

All comments made were than registered in a separate tab in the same spreadsheet:

The Result

Amazingly forum comment worked in this case. Ali received a lead after 13 forums received our comments. We did commented in 5 to 10 different discussions, so we commented around 100 times in the space of 3 days. And we have got a lead!

Traffic didn’t increase much and Google rankings also weren’t affected.

Marketing Lab Manifesto

To market any business is hard.

The simple questions: who are your ideal clients and where to find them, puzzle business owners all over the world.

Let alone build a list, a blog, online ads, guest posts… It is a lot of work and you need to get leads out of it or else the investment becomes an expense.

I’m Jacobi, and I have been a CRM consultant for many years and Marketing is part of the customer journey (Marketing, Sales, Support).

Being at the forefront of marketing for so many years, there’s one thing I know: you can’t afford to be complacent.

Look in the dictionary and you’ll see that marketing is defined as “the action or business of promoting and selling products or services.”

Central to selling is generating leads and knowing your market.

But there is so much noise out there, so many gurus, techniques, and programs, where to start?

This blog exists to answer that exact question.

By building a marketing strategy you are in essence laying out on a calendar, a series of campaigns that you will run online in order to generate leads on the products you want to sell.

From experience, it’s crucial to build at least four campaigns in advance. This forms a marketing plan, which is needed six to 12 months ahead of launch.

One of the great benefits of digital marketing is the ability to track campaigns. It allows companies to create tailored adverts to their audience, and through trial and error adjust and develop the best way to reach them.

Trial and error is KEY to this and has helped me in my journey getting here today. That doesn’t specifically mean you have to ‘fail’, it just means tracking campaigns and focusing on those that are more successful.

While Google Adwords remains important, Facebook has become the marketer’s best friend, although it is not as cheap as it used to be.

Each platform brings its own strengths. LinkedIn is great for B2B, Pinterest works well with the female audience when offering visual products, Snapchat is known to be a popular medium with millennials…

But are ads really the only way?

Content is King

While advertising is a sure-fire way to reach an audience on social media, news sites, and search engines, providing engaging content is a credible approach that works for companies of all sizes.

Think with me, what are ads if not snippets of content? What about landing pages? Content! And Blogs? Content also!

Used correctly it drives traffic and adds credibility to a brand. And, it can help convert consumers to sellers. Just looking at ROI, shows it’s a worthwhile investment.

But how to use content to help with sales and lead gen?

Join the Lab!

There are so many content marketing training courses out there that people get dizzy just to think about.

There is Monster Truck SEO, Product Launch Formula, Moz SEO, Buzzstream, Income School, Socially-sourced content tools…

Here, in this very blog, you will see what we have been trying, experimenting and working on at any given moment.

It can be overwhelming to know where to look for inspiration and proven formulas like the above when starting out. This is where I can help.

My ‘Digital Marketing Lab’ offers a dedicated calendar with all the latest experiments, theories and outcomes, at the cutting edge of digital marketing.

The good news is that keeping up to date is easy!

Join our newsletter and read our blogs, for the very latest updates.

More than that, you will know of the results before they get published in this blog and also you can help choose the next experiment and have complete access to the outcomes – all before they get published too!

So, now you can stay ahead while staying ahead of the competition.

 

Generate Traffic Through Content [Free Consultation]

Schedule now a 15 minutes call,

It is free, no commitments, no spams, no newsletter.

Handshake Links is a consulting company that uses software, manpower, and knowledge to build content in several different ways.

Schedule now a 15 minutes call for us to assess what is best for your business and also to send you some material that will be useful in your quest for more visitors.

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Publishing content (6/7)

Contents

  1. How to increase your traffic with content
  2. Content Challenge
  3. Keyword research
  4. Content Planning
  5. Content writing
  6. Publishing content
  7. The result
  8. Learn to generate traffic through content

Internal Links Setup

Now it is time to find places on my page where to place the links to our new content.

Sometimes we will need to tweak the content here and there to make a link relevant.

I will start with the hardest ones: the geolocation ones.

They are hard to place on my page because its content is not related to any location specifically so I will need to be careful not to place irrelevant links just for the sake of it.

So I’ll put the first link in the footer because I have a little Google Maps embedded there with my address so the first link will be:

Continue reading…

Content writing (5/7)

Contents

  1. How to increase your traffic with content
  2. Content Challenge
  3. Keyword research
  4. Content Planning
  5. Content writing
  6. Publishing content
  7. The result
  8. Learn to generate traffic through content

Hiring content writers

After I have done the keyword research and written the content outline document it is time to select a writer and a designer (for the infographic).

I use Upwork for that and here is how:

  1. I post a job with some details on the description, attach the document outline and pay a fixed fee
    1. I have tested several different prices and noticed that:
      1. Infographic design and Article writing below 500 words I can pay 30 dollars and get a good result
      2. For 1000 words article I usually pay 40 dollars

Continue reading…

Content Challenge (2/7)

Contents

  1. How to increase your traffic with content
  2. Content Challenge
  3. Keyword research
  4. Content Planning
  5. Content writing
  6. Publishing content
  7. The result
  8. Learn to generate traffic through content

Read this article until the end and you will see how we increased website traffic publishing 11 pieces of content linked from my main page, the page we want to have traffic going to.

The problem to solve…

During the first half of April/2018, the volume of accesses I was getting on my site started to decrease

We had a 55 unique visitors, all via link building.

No traffic was coming from Google, I wasn’t even ranking on its organic searches, but despite this mild success the bounce rate was really high and frankly, we need more visitor than that to make it worthwhile.

Continue reading…