Which Social Media Should I Put My Efforts into for My Business?

Due to issues with privacy and security, Google+ is shutting down in April of 2019.

On November 6, 2018, Google+ users were faced with the exposure of their private profile content. Alphabet Inc, Google’s mother company, revealed that a bug allowed 52 million users’ private information to be compromised and given to outside app developers without the users’ consent.

“Protecting the privacy and security of our users has long been an essential part of our mission,” says Google, Inc. CEO Sundar Pichai. Yet, in October of 2018, there was a similar breach of privacy which also provided outside app developers with Google+ users’ private information, including full names, email addresses, genders, birthdays, photos, places lived, relationship statuses, and occupations. It was after this glitch that Google initially announced the demise of Google+, which was to be terminated in August of 2019. Considering the second privacy violation, the date of termination was moved up four months to April 2019.

So, with all these major changes from Google, which platform(s) are most practical and provide the most security for your company?

Google My Business (GMB) is presumed to be the platform of choice for business owners. GMB is a free tool for businesses to supervise their online presence throughout Google, including Google Search and Google Maps. This platform allows customers to find your business’ location as well as inform them about your business, its hours, and contact information.

Within your GMB account, there is a section called Insights which offers new analytic features. Among these are queries used to find your business, customer actions like visiting your website, making phone calls, and direction requests. The platform also allows business owners to place ads, write posts, upload pictures, and update company information. Another aspect beneficial to business owners is that GMB allows for customers to leave a review of the company and compiles them in an easy-to-read list. These reviews can be responded to by the business owners.

Other Social Media You Should Use for Your Business

Social media is the basis of which most customers are going to learn more about your business. Many companies use various social media platforms to not only connect with their customers but to gain visibility throughout the internet as well. It is most beneficial to your company if you utilize multiple social media outlets to market your business. But which ones are worth it?

LinkedIn is the most professional social media platform and allows businesses to network with other people or companies and draw potential customers or clients to your business. On your company profile, you can share any awards bestowed, your accomplishments, and post in detail about current and past projects. In addition to these features, you can post and share articles, videos, and photos on your newsfeed with your network of connections and followers. You can even develop your own articles using LinkedIn Publishing. Another great aspect of LinkedIn that is ideal for business owners is the ability to list job openings and review applications from potential employees. LinkedIn is a one-stop-shop for all your social media, marketing, and business development needs.

Facebook has specific pages and profiles for companies and business professionals. These provide the business with analytics, ad opportunities, and the ability to post events and updates along with photos and videos. Keeping your clients and customers up to date on all that’s happening with your business has never been easier or more condensed into one outlet. Facebook Messenger also provides more interaction with customers. Messenger allows customers to directly message a business and discuss any questions or concerns they may have.

Instagram is perfect for sharing photos and videos from company events and posting promotional graphics to market your products or services. There is a business profile option which will allow you to connect your email address, phone number and website at the top of your Instagram page. Interaction with customers and clients is extremely simple with Instagram’s comments which, depending on your privacy settings, give anyone the ability to write a comment on a post.

Twitter is another great social media platform for businesses to post last minute updates to their followers about promotions, events, or cancelations due to weather. In addition to these updates, Twitter is also a great source to repost from Facebook and Instagram.

Not sure which social media platform is best for your business? Focus on what your company is providing to the public. If you have a lot of photographs to share with your customers, Instagram is a great option to allow your pictures to highlight your business. If your business hosts a lot of events, consider utilizing Facebook to create ads and invite customers to these events. Additionally, Twitter is great for making quick updates to schedules and keeping in contact with clients. If you still aren’t positive about what platform to use, start with one you are personally using. This way, you already have some experience with the platform and can utilize your prior knowledge to increase your business’ exposure.

You may find that you want to have presence on more than one social media network. Being present in multiple areas will increase your company’s visibility and help you reach more potential customers.

Managing Multiple Social Media Accounts

It may seem as if managing multiple social media accounts can become overwhelming. However, there is no need to fret. There are terrific software programs that help consolidate all your social media accounts in one space. Among these are Hootsuite and Buffer.

Hootsuite integrates multiple types of social media outlets such as Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter into one interface. Other sites such as YouTube, LinkedIn, and WordPress blogs can be incorporated. If you have multiple businesses or organizations you manage, you may add these organizations along with all their respective social media accounts. Buffer is very similar. You can include multiple organizations as well, and each may have multiple social media accounts. Among those covered are Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, and LinkedIn.

These integrations are wonderful because they provide you with the ability to create a singular post and share it on all your social media platforms with just a few clicks. You can also schedule your posts to go out at a later date or time, even months in advance! Both Hootsuite and Buffer provide analytics and the ability to respond to all your comments within the same window.

When it comes to choosing which social media management software is best for your business, it is best to research each software to find one that fits your needs and budget. For further information please contact us at 1-855-PRMG-123 or email us at info@theprmg.com.

YouTube’s Popularity Can Help Your Business

YouTube is a video sharing and hosting platform owned by Google. Users can upload content to their own YouTube pages and share the videos on other social media platforms. Oftentimes, YouTube is used for tutorial and how-to videos, company overviews and event videos, music and gaming videos, and clips from popular TV shows. Some videos go “viral” which means they are viewed by millions of people from all over the world and are shared on other media such as Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

In 2006, Google acquired YouTube for 1.65 billion dollars. Since then, YouTube’s worth and exposure has grown exponentially. What started out as a site for posting funny home videos, is now a site where Google splits its revenue with content creators to produce high quality content. Due to these advancements, according to the YouTube Global Internal Data in 2016, the number of advertisers on YouTube increased by threefold over the last two years.

How to Utilize YouTube to Grow Your Business

Video advertising is a great way to showcase all your business has to offer. Viewers can get a genuine visual of who your company is and the area in which it specializes. You can use videos to highlight specific products your company sells and how they work. Or if you’re a service-based company, you can create videos discussing your services and how they help your customers.

Did you know that during TV’s prime time, more 18-49-year-olds are watching YouTube in the United States than they are watching prime time shows? This was determined by a Google-commissioned Nielsen study in 2016. Another result from the study declares people 18 and over spend more time watching YouTube than traditional television. That suggests an ad on YouTube has the potential to be more effective than traditional TV and broadcast advertising.

How to Setup a YouTube Ad

Setup a YouTube account

To get started, you are going to need to have a YouTube account for your company. It is necessary that you have a video pre-made and uploaded to YouTube before you advertise it on the site.

Create a High-Quality Commercial Video

If you don’t have a video, it’s recommended you hire a professional to create one for your company. While YouTube provides you with tips on how to make a good quality video on your smartphone, often the most effective way to have people watch your ad is to ensure it is high quality by using high-tech equipment and a professional editor.

Choose Who Should See Your Ad

If your company sells makeup products, you probably want your ads to be presented to users who consistently watch makeup tutorials. You can also select a geographic location to display your ad to people in a specific region.

Set Your Budget

From small businesses to large corporations, YouTube has advertising options for companies of all sizes and budgets. Sometimes, YouTube even has special offers for advertising services.

With YouTube’s continuously growing audience and Google as its backbone, video advertising on YouTube is beneficial to companies in any U.S. region, of any size, and of any purpose or service. YouTube’s wide range of content provides businesses with opportunities most suitable to their products and services.

So, what are you waiting for? To learn more about advertising your business, please email us at johnzaher@theprmg.com or call 1-855-776-4123.

Blogging Best Practices

Bloggers from the public relations and marketing groupBy now, most bloggers are familiar with the phrase “content is king,” and while there really is no substitute for good content, many bloggers are simply not getting the audience their content merits.  A lack of knowledge of search engine optimization (SEO) techniques is the main reason for low readership on well-written and frequently updated blogs. But even those who are not tech-savvy can optimize their blogs by improving the quality, images, tags and links (assuming you are using a user friendly website such as WordPress, Drupal or CMS). Continue reading “Blogging Best Practices”

Nine SEO Metrics and Terms that You Need to Understand

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In today’s digital world, search engines such as Google, Bing and Yahoo! have become powerful tools that play a large role in the success or failure of many companies. Ranking high in search engine results can help a business gain market share and strengthen their brand. When a business appears on the first page of search results for key terms, whether the consumer is actively searching for the business or not, it can directly result in leads and sales. The consumer will start to identify with the brand and build perceptions of the company just by seeing them at the top of the page. Having low results in search engine queries can hurt your business as much as good results can help. No matter the circumstances, all businesses should be on the first page for a certain term, such as their company or CEO’s name.

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is the process of improving a website so that it appears higher in search engine results. Improving such results can be a lengthy process that requires much effort. In order to improve results, one needs to pay close attention to key performance indicators associated with SEO. Tools such as Google Analytics allow developers of a website to track metrics vital to a website’s SEO success. However, none of these statistics will help if one does not truly understand them. Below are nine metrics and terms that one needs to know in order to improve their SEO: Continue reading “Nine SEO Metrics and Terms that You Need to Understand”

Using Google+ to Maximize Web Searching

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With over 343 million users, Google+ is rapidly changing the landscape of social media, web searching and search engine optimization (SEO). As Google continues to dominate the search engine market, Google+ profiles personalize search results through authorship and social searching techniques. By understanding how Google+ affects web searching through tools such as rel= “author” and Search plus Your World, you can use Google+ to become a leader in your industry and maximize your website’s potential.

Authorship: Rel=“author”
Web searchers use Google to find credible online sources. As a result, Google has emphasized authorship and given higher rankings to web authors with frequently updated, original content. With the rel=“author” tag, you can claim authorship of your content and build your own credibility by linking your Google+ profile to your website or blog posts in Google search results. If your website is properly tagged with rel=“author,” your name and Google+ profile picture will appear next to your website listing when it appears in Google’s search results. Through this, you put a name and a face to your website or blog posts, while also catching the attention of Google searchers. By clicking on your name or your picture, the user will be directed to your Google+ profile and have the option to “follow” you. Most importantly, rel=“author” establishes your credibility and if searchers have visited your website before or liked a post you have written, they are more likely to visit your site or blog again when they see your profile picture and name pop up next to the search entry. Depending on whether you are writing for your own blog, as part of a guest blog, or under a larger group, the ways in which to implement this authorship tag will differ.

Social Searching: Search plus Your World
Search plus Your World is a form of social searching that gives personalized results, based on the circles and contacts in your Google+ profile. Social searching incentivizes both businesses and individuals to remain active on Google+ and make as many connections as possible to maximize the possibility of placement in search results. For example, if you own an ice cream shop and are connected to Joe on Google+, then it is highly likely that your shop will appear in Joe’s Google search results for “ice cream shop.” Likewise, if your best friend, with whom you are connected on Google+, just posted pictures from her vacation to London on her profile, you may find her pictures popping up on Google if you do an image search for Big Ben or Buckingham Palace. Social searching levels the playing field of search engine optimization and places more emphasis on personal relationships than domain authority or other SEO techniques, so it is necessary to engage with followers on Google+ and continually develop new relationships to stay relevant. As of now, the Search plus Your World feature is strictly limited to Google+, and contacts from other social networks like Twitter and Facebook will not appear in the search results.

We predict that Google’s attempt to integrate social media with web searching will have an enormous impact on SEO and basic web searching. As Google continues to alter search algorithms to include social and personal features, it will focus on relationships through social media and increase the chances of appearing in search results without using other SEO strategies. Google may also tap into other social networks like Twitter and Facebook to develop even more personalized results. Overall, we recommend that you use Google+ to develop your online brand and credibility through authorship tags and forge new relationships through social searching to increase traffic to your website and blog posts.

If you have any questions or are interested in developing your social media and search engine optimization strategy, contact 1-855-PRMG-123 or info@theprmg.com.

Quality, Transparency, and Honesty: A Look at Google’s Penguin 2.0

google penguin 2.0In May, Google rolled out its newest search engine update, the infamous Penguin 2.0. Since 2011, Google has released several algorithm updates known as Google Panda and Google Penguin to ensure that the highest quality websites are ranked highest in Google’s search engine, and spammers are penalized. Continuing this trend, the goal of Penguin 2.0 has been to optimize the Google experience for searchers and ensure honesty and transparency in Search Engine Optimization.

The Google Panda and Google Penguin updates targeted “thin sites,” which have little original content and rely more on advertising and duplicate content to maintain a ranking in Google’s search engine. More specifically, the Penguin 2.0 update targets webspam, which usually occurs in the form of keyword stuffing and backlinks from disreputable websites rather than relevant and high-quality sources. Penguin 2.0 penalizes these “black hat practices” by lowering the websites’ rankings on Google and thus decreasing traffic to the sites. So far, Penguin 2.0 has had a significant impact on 2.3% of all English-language websites, and webmasters are taking notice.

Unlike the previous versions of Panda and Penguin, Penguin 2.0 changed Google’s algorithm rather than just refresh it, meaning that these are changes that are here to stay. Keyword stuffing, high volumes of spammy backlinks, and low-quality content are no longer effective methods of Search Engine Optimization and will, in fact, be punished. This means that SEO cannot take any shortcuts and must be built on quality, transparency, and honesty.

In order to follow these three principles, we recommend that you plan a long-term, rather than a short-term, approach to your Search Engine Optimization. Most importantly, make your site an authority in its area by creating and frequently updating high-quality content directed to your specific audience

To avoid sounding like webspam, don’t pad your website with the same keywords and phrases. Instead, use natural variations of words and phrases relevant to your site’s topic. If the content is original and of high quality, the keywords and audience will naturally come and the site will be higher in Google’s search results (blogs are a good way to continuously post high-quality new content and generate repeat visitors).

In regards to link-building, focus on quality rather than quantity, and ensure that the only backlinks to your site come from reputable sources, such as Google, YouTube, and social media sites.  This may require you to consistently update your anti-spam practices and follow relevant tech news.

Over time, these tools will help you build your online brand and engage with your audience in a direct and honest way. By taking this simple, transparent approach, you can increase your website’s ranking on Google, drive more traffic to your site, and avoid the wrath of Penguin 2.0.

If you are interested in creating a new website or optimizing an existing site, contact us at 1-855-PRMG-123 or email info@theprmg.com.

5 Blogging Mistakes and How to Fix Them

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Anyone can create a blog but at the end of the day, the question is whether or not your blog is getting results and generating leads for your business. If the answer is no, you may be committing one of the following blogging sins. This article will provide an overview of five common mistakes businesses make when blogging, including not understanding their target audience, not providing any contact information, inconsistent updating, bad writing and not including multimedia.

For those who are new to blogging, read our article, “Should My Business Have a Blog?.”

  1. Not Understanding Your Target Audience — One of the most common blogging mistakes is when a business doesn’t understand the needs of their audience. The key to successful blogging is focusing every post on what your prospective customers or clients would find most valuable or interesting. Readers are looking for information that can directly benefit them. Businesses should place an emphasis on creating interesting, helpful and engaging content rather than pure self-promotion.For more information and tips on creating content, read our article, “Why Quality Content Reigns Supreme.”
  1. No Contact Information — Without clearly displayed contact information, your business can miss out on a number of leads and potential customers. Ensure your contact information is clearly displayed and include your business name, address, phone number and an email address. Also, don’t forget to complete the “About Page” of your blog with a well-written, concise description of your organization. This way, readers can easily find out more information about your business and contact you, should they have any questions.
  1. Inconsistency — Perhaps the biggest mistake that bloggers can make is inconsistency. If a reader stumbles upon your blog and sees that it hasn’t been updated in a month or two, they won’t be likely to give it any credibility. This is a sure way to lose potential leads. By establishing a publication schedule, whether it be twice a week or weekly, it’s far more likely that your blog will be successful. Updating your blog with strong, well-written posts on a consistent basis will drive high-quality traffic to your site.
  1. Bad Writing — If your blog is riddled with typos and bad grammar, it will reflect poorly on your business. Poorly written articles will turn off readers and discourage them from reading future entries or contacting your organization. Writing concisely, using spell-check and taking the time to proofread your writing can go a long way. Also, it’s essential to fully research any facts that you may not be sure about to prevent inaccurate or misleading information from being published.For tips on achieving flawless writing and grammar, read our articles, “Proofreading — The First in a Series of Three Articles,” “Write Like You Mean It: 5 Ways to Use Better Grammar” and “Words Mean Things: 5 Tips to Avoid Spelling Errors.”
  1. No Images or Videos — Whenever possible, include some kind of multimedia with your blog entries. Even if your content is strong, it’s important to include some kind of visual or audio element to supplement the text. Readers are very responsive to articles that include photos, videos, graphs, charts, podcasts and so on. Also, having an image or video helps draw people in and make the post more eye-catching.

For more information, please contact The Public Relations and Marketing Group at (631) 207-1057 or johnzaher@theprmg.com. You can also visit our blog for more valuable articles, advertising spotlights and more.

How to Choose the Right Keywords

5 Tips for Making the Most Out of Your Business’ Keyword Strategy

When it comes to search engine optimization (SEO), keywords are extremely important. Keywords are the words or short phrases that Internet users type into a search engine when looking for a website, business, service or product. In regards to SEO, search engines use keywords when analyzing and prioritizing websites. By including strong keywords in the content of your website, the meta tags, ALT tags, your domain name and each individual page name, your search engine rankings will dramatically improve. Apart from SEO purposes, keywords should also be used in blog entries and your Web advertising campaigns. This article will explain how to choose keywords that will boost your business’ online visibility and bring you higher conversion rates.

  1. Know Your Target Audience — Before determining which keywords to use, you must know exactly what your target audience is most interested in. Your keywords should consist of words or phrases that potential customers are most likely to use when searching for your business, service or website. Ask yourself: what would my potential customers most likely enter into a search engine? Once you are familiar with your audience’s needs and mindset, you can begin compiling a list of potential keywords.
  2. Brainstorm — Come up with a list of potential words and phrases that your target audience might use to find your business online. The goal is to show up as high as possible in search engine results when people search using these keywords. Generate a list of words or short phrases that relate to what your website is trying to promote, sell or offer to your target audience. Try to stay away from very popular keywords because the more competition there is for a keyword, the harder it is to rank high for it. You can narrow your keyword phrases by adding a location or town. Also, rather than repeating the same keyword over and over again in your Web copy, it’s best to use the keyword’s synonyms. This way, your content will be more interesting for readers and Google won’t mark you as a keyword abuser.
  3. Use Keyword Tools — There are plenty of tools on the Web that will help you determine the monthly activity or popularity of potential keywords. For example, try using the Google AdWords Keyword Tool. This useful tool can help you get keyword ideas for your overall list and, more specifically, for your Web advertising campaigns. Through this keyword tool, you can find keywords based on your website’s content and also identify negative keywords. Here are several other keyword tools available on the Web:
  4. Keep an Eye on Your Competition — By taking a look at your competitors’ meta tags, you can see which keywords they are using and get an idea of which words and phrases are most common in your industry. By using programs such as Web CEO, you can measure how well you, and your competitors, come up in search engines and, essentially, how easily potential customers are able to find your website. You can also try entering one of your desired keywords into a popular search engine to see which websites show up the highest for this word. While you are aiming for keywords that your target audience is most likely to use, you also want keywords that don’t have as much competition. If you can find a balance of strong keywords and less competition, you will have a better conversion rate.
  5. Adapt When Necessary — Over time, keep track of words and search phrases to determine which keywords you should keep and which you should remove. If you find that some of these words are no longer relevant, opt for different ones and monitor what works and what doesn’t.

For more information on keywords, please read our article, “On-Page Optimization and Keywords.” You can also contact The Public Relations and Marketing Group at (631) 207-1057 or johnzaher@theprmg.com. You can also visit our blog for more valuable articles, advertising spotlights and more.

What You Need to Know About SEO

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Search engine optimization (SEO) is absolutely critical to modern marketing. With millions of new Web pages flooding the Internet every day, search engines are forced to sift through the clutter and develop a ranking system to prioritize websites. In the most basic sense, SEO is everything that helps your business get ranked higher and receive optimal exposure from these search engines. This is so important because your position on organic search engine results correlates with the number of leads generated by your website. For those who are new to SEO, this article will explain the most important factors that affect these rankings.

  1. Content — Compelling content is perhaps the most important and influential factor of search engine optimization. Every Web page you create should contain unique content that is fresh and relevant to your industry and keywords. Strong content is quickly picked up by the major search engines and pushed to the top of the search results. When writing your Web copy, see if you’ve answered the needs of your customers or clients. What kind of content are they looking for? Depending on your industry, you may offer guidebooks, downloads, a FAQ section, multimedia and other pages that are of value to your audience. It’s also important to ask yourself (even if your content meets the needs of your audience): What makes your website stand out from those of similar organizations? The more valuable and unique your website, the more traffic it will receive. For more information on the importance of content and how you can create better content, please see our article, “Why Quality Content Reigns Supreme.”
  1. Your Web Page Must be Crawlable — In order to build traffic, your website must allow search engines to easily “crawl,” or access and index, the information on your site. If your content cannot be crawled, it won’t be ranked or indexed by search engines. To ensure that your website is crawlable, use search engine-friendly CSS code, include a simple and clean navigation, use text links and incorporate a keyword-rich URL structure. Once your website has been fully optimized, crawled and indexed, it will be much easier to attract organic traffic from Google and other major search engines.
  1. On-page SEO — On-page SEO refers to all of the production requirements on the specific individual pages you are trying to rank. When developing your Web presence, make sure that every page is fully optimized since it’s possible that individual pages of your website will rank higher than your homepage. Start out with a strong, well-thought-out design, incorporate a frequent updating strategy and pick a domain name with potential keywords in it. It’s also important to name your individual Web pages using keywords. For example: www.yourcompany.com/keyword1-keyword2.html. Use proper programming and avoid “black hat” methods to prevent blacklisting by Google and other search engines. These black hat methods include repeating the keyword in your content too often, having duplicate websites and registering many domains and interlinking them all. For more in-depth information on on-page optimization tips and techniques, please see our article, “On-Page Optimization and Keywords.”
  1. Relevance — Your website and individual Web pages must be a close match to the term that is being searched. To boost your site’s relevance in the eyes of popular search engines, make sure that every title, header, link, graphic name and page on your website is somehow relevant and connected to your subject and desired keywords.
  1. Off-page SEO — Off-page SEO refers to the external aspects which attribute to rankings, or everything that happens off your website that builds traffic and leads to higher search engine ranking. The most important factors to consider are the external pages linking to your website and the level of authority these pages have. For example, submitting your website to popular Web directories and social bookmarking websites that have high authority will benefit your overall SEO. For more detailed information about off-page optimization and long-term strategies to improve your SEO, please read our article, “No, We Can’t Get You Those Results Overnight.” An important factor of off-page optimization is the level of authority given to your Web page. The more authority your Web page has, the more likely it will rank high for certain keywords. To maximize your authority, secure as many backlinks as possible from as many high-authority sites as possible. Since authority is an aspect of link-building, you can build authority on the Web by utilizing off-page optimization methods such as submitting your site to Web directories, using social bookmarking websites, blogging regularly and other techniques to engage users with your content and drive traffic and legitimate backlinks to your website.
  2. Link Building — Link building is critical to enhancing your SEO and attracting people to your website. Backlinks are so important to SEO because some major search engines, such as Google, will give more credit to websites that have a high number of quality backlinks. This doesn’t mean buying links or using link farms — backlinks should only be coming from credible sources. For example, backlinks from websites such as Google, YouTube and free submission websites are given more authority and link value. The four major factors that affect link value are:
    • Whether It Is a No-Follow or Do-Follow Link — Focus on obtaining do-follow links, which contain a special HTML Markup that notifies the major search engines to follow the destination inside the link. Always avoid link farms since these can actually hurt your search engine ranking.
    • The Authority of the Page Your Link Appears On — The higher the authority of the page your link appears on, the more SEO credit your backlink will hold.
    • The Number of Other Links on the Page Linking to You — The more links on one page, the less SEO credit each link possesses.
    • The Anchor Text of a Link — Links that have desired keywords in the anchor text (the clickable text in a hyperlink) are the most valuable to you, in terms of ranking for those keywords.

For more information, please contact The Public Relations and Marketing Group at (631) 207-1057 or johnzaher@theprmg.com. You can also visit our blog for more valuable articles, advertising spotlights and more.

10 Ways to Generate Leads Online

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The Internet offers countless opportunities for building your professional network and generating leads for your business. Especially for those on a tight budget, it’s important to focus on making the most of lead generation tools and techniques that are readily available on the Web. This article will provide you with ten simple ways you can generate leads online for your business.

  1. Send Out Monthly E-newsletters — Email marketing is hugely effective when it comes to converting leads into customers over time. To maximize your email marketing efforts, it’s essential to keep in touch with your audience using an e-newsletter. Your e-newsletter should contain valuable, timely and relevant content that is intended to keep your audience interested in your organization and what services or products you offer. For more information on writing and distributing e-newsletters, please see our article, “Why Your Business Needs an E-newsletter.”
  1. Offer Free Content in Exchange for Contact Information — By offering valuable content such as guidebooks, e-books and other free downloads on your website and in your advertising, people will be more likely to give up their contact information. Even if it’s just a name and email address, this information is essential to generating leads and future customers or clients. Over time, engaging these leads with credible, valuable content can lead to long-term buying relationships.
  1. Host Webinars — Webinars are online seminars offered by a company to replace an in-person business conference, lecture or presentation. When people want to attend your webinar, they’ll have to enter their name, email address and other contact information, if necessary. This is excellent for businesses because, for every webinar participant, you’ll gain a new lead and a potential customer. The stronger your presentation is, and the better you promote your upcoming webinar, the more leads you will generate.
  1. Advertise Using Pay-Per-Clicks — Pay-per-click advertising is an excellent way to generate qualified leads. Pay-per-click advertising outlets, such as Google AdWords, allow businesses to market to people who are already actively searching for their products or services. Users who click on your ad will be delivered to a custom landing page where they can enter their contact information in exchange for the content or service that was advertised. For more information on pay-per-click advertising, please see our articles, “Interest-Based Advertising,” “A Beginner’s Guide to Google AdWords,” and “An In-Depth Look into Google AdWords.”
  1. Create Effective Landing Pages — A landing page is a single Web page that appears in response to a reader clicking on an advertisement. Landing pages are often linked from social media ads, email ad campaigns or pay-per-click ad campaigns. Landing pages should include brief descriptions of the downloadable content and services your business offers, as well as an image of the content and a short form for contact information. A well-designed landing page is essential for generating qualified leads for your business. Marketers can even measure the effectiveness of a landing page by analyzing the activity generated by the linked URL, such as click-through and conversion rates. For more information on creating effective landing pages, please see our article, “Five Steps to Generating New Business through Web Advertising, Landing Pages and Emails.”
  1. Submit Your Website to Web Directories — Web directories provide valuable backlinks that will improve your business’ visibility and search engine optimization. By listing your business in accurate categories, people who are already looking for information regarding your industry or service will be directed to your website, making them more qualified and targeted leads. For more information on free Web directories and other submission sites that offer backlinks, please see our article, “Why You Should Take Advantage of Free Submission Websites.”
  1. Distribute Press Releases Online — Every time you distribute your press release online, that site will provide backlinks to your main website. This will further direct interested readers directly to your business. Keep in mind that, for SEO purposes, it is vital to distribute press releases that are optimized for your target keywords. For more information on press releases, please see our article, “5 Tips for Writing Effective Press Releases.”
  1. Optimize Your LinkedIn Profile — When used properly, LinkedIn can be a great tool for business networking, developing professional relationships and generating strong leads. For B2B companies, LinkedIn is the ultimate social networking site. The first step is to make sure that your profile is as close to 100% complete as possible. Next, it’s important to boost your visibility and credibility on LinkedIn by contributing to group discussions on the “Discussions” and “Answers” boards. For more information on LinkedIn, please see our article, “Making the Right Connections with LinkedIn.”
  1. Share Documents, Slideshows and Presentations — By sharing your presentations or slideshows on the Web, you can not only boost the credibility and popularity of your business online, but you will secure valuable backlinks to your website. Websites such as Scribd and SlideShare not only rank high with major search engines, but they provide backlinks to lead readers directly to your main website.
  1. Maintain an Active Blog — According to a study done by KBK Communications, B2B companies that blog generate 67% more leads than those who do not. Blogging is essential to any successful marketing and communications strategy, especially in regards to lead generation. Include a clear section for readers to subscribe to your blog via email or an RSS feed. For more information on blogging, please see our article, “Should My Business Have a Blog?

For more information, please contact The Public Relations and Marketing Group at (631) 207-1057 or johnzaher@theprmg.com. You can also visit our blog for more valuable articles, advertising spotlights and more.