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personal branding - Branding tips for Small Businesses

Branding tips for Small Businesses

Are you a small business owner looking to brand your enterprise? Well, congratulations as you are in the right place! We are going to share some effective and quick tips on how you can best brand your set of services or products.

After all, it does not matter whether you’re a big or a small company. Size does not matter. What matters is how you choose to identify yourself and ultimately to brand yourself.

Your brand is how your target market will feel when they interact or think about your company. Hence, defining and positioning how both potential and current consumers feel about your commercial endeavours is critical to your professional success.

Time to get started.

  1. Outline your brand identity

This is the first and foremost step as you embark upon your branding journey. There are a few questions you need to ask yourself. They include but are not limited to:

  1. How is your portfolio of products or services different from your competitors?
  2. What do you define as your company values, goals and mission of your enterprise?
  3. In what light do you want your potential customers to view your brand? What do you want them to think when they interact with it?

Once you have clarity on the above questions, you can commence designing your brand’s DNA.

  1. Keep your brand message consistent and coherent

Your brand promise will ultimately be communicated via your brand message to your consumers. They need to know what your unique selling proposition is and why they should procure your product.

The most important thing here is to effectively convey how your brand will add value to your consumer’s life. Maybe your product is all natural and vegan – it will appeal to all eco-friendly individuals out there. Remember that the values, mission and goals you defined in the preceding step will influence this heavily. After all, everything is interconnected.

  1. Design your imagery and communication strategy

What comes to your mind when you think of Apple? No, not the fruit- but the tech giant itself. Let me guess, you think of Steve Jobs in his top form as an inspiring and excited personality. Do you know why this visual popped into your head? It is quite simple.

This can only be attributed to Apple’s marketing brilliance by involving his personality in all aspects of brand communication, high tech and keeping things simple. Apple succeeded in building an emotional connect with its target market.

It is imperative that you live up to the brand promise and message that you deliver. For instance, if you claim to care about the environment, then you need to prove that to your target market.

Don’t forget to make sure your represents what you stand for. There is a number of online logo design  services that can help you achieve this.

  1. Get on board the social media train

Once you have designed your brand principles, you can start building direct relationships with your customers with the help of social media. Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest, Linkedin, Twitter..the list goes on and on.

The good news is that you do not have to be present on all social media platforms. Just choose one or two and concentrate your efforts on amplifying your footprint there. Maintain a consistent tone of brand voice across all channels.

For instance, if you are informal in your style of communication on Facebook, make sure to replicate it on your Instagram page as well. You have to be true to your  brand in every comment, like, post, and share that you do.

  1. Let your target audience get to know you

Sometimes, knowing who the brand  owners and what they stand for can make all the difference in a sale. For instance, suppose you sell face powder but market to your customers that you do not test on animals.

Now imagine a person in a make-up store, debating whether to try your brand or another one- which does animal testing. Knowing that you do not indulge in such harmful practices will push her towards your brand as she will not want to support a business that brings harm to living things.

  1. Get creative

Do not be scared nor hesitant in letting your creative juices flow. Ditch the conventional norms of marketing and communication and get down to implementing innovative practices.

For instance, if you are a toy company, adopt a child as your brand persona and utilise language similar to how today’s children communicate in. Make it a team effort and brainstorm a list of unique ideas. However, do not lose sight of the bigger picture and do not forget the very essence of your brand.

  1. Manage all your brand touchpoints

It is vital that you remember that your brand’s reputation has to always remain in top form to ensure that you do not lose out on growth and potential sales. As a small business owner, you can customise your touchpoints, your messages and speak to customers directly if need be. Work closely with your sales guy to understand what your customers are truly about.

  1. Constantly remind people about your brand of services or product

Branding takes time. Giants such as Apple and Nike have invested a ton of marketing dollars into their branding campaigns and have spent time in gaining the top of mind recall position in their consumers’ mind in their respective product categories.

  1. Dream big

Do not let the size of your business deter any big goals and big dreams that you may have. Dream big so you can become big. We have faith in you! We know you will achieve your objectives. Maintain brand consistency and always maintain the quality of your product.

By doing so, you will win the trust of your customers. Once you do that, the sky is the limit! Why, you ask? Simple. Because you will have their brand loyalty. And that means guaranteed repeat sales as they will come back to repurchase your brand as they were happy with its performance and the difference it made in their lives.

jYAF91I 1 796x398 - Small Business SEO? The Benefits and Why It’s Vital

Small Business SEO? The Benefits and Why It’s Vital

When starting a business for the first time, it can be difficult to ascertain what approach should be taken when advertising the brand, or the products it sells. Some may advice you to focus on word-of-mouth for local services, whereas others may insist you need a strong social marketing plan.

The truth is that each small business has its own goals so what works for one business doesn’t necessarily work for another. As such, it’s important for a business ascertain its goals and clarify the niche of your brand to ensure that the right form of digital marketing is put in place.

Those who aren’t familiar with search engine optimisation may dismiss the practice as non-essential for a small business, but nothing could be further from the truth. SEO is just as important for small businesses as it is for global empires. It just needs to be used in the right way.

And according to this Digital Marketing Agency in Scotland SEO can be adopted by anyone, regardless of their budget, meaning its one of the most vital elements of digital marketing that a business shouldn’t dismiss without looking at the benefits it is able to offer.

Determine the Niche of Your Business

Regardless of whether you’re taking on the SEO work yourself or looking to hire the services of a third-party professional, a successful SEO campaign can only be crafted if the niche of the business is clear. Although many businesses may look similar on the service, there are several elements that can make all the difference as to which business they choose.

For example, if you’re a technology company that has an emphasis on using recycled parts and creating machines in the greenest way possible, then it’s important not to focus on keywords that only relate to technology alone.

Those looking to reduce their carbon footprint will be on the lookout for such an item and will using search terms to find a suitable provider. Harnessing these keywords can mean that you’re serving a demographic that’s being completely ignored by bigger companies.

Having a better understanding of what the business can offer allows business owners to ensure that their marketing plans can be tailored to capture demographics that are keen to purchase what the business has to offer, which follows onto the next topic.

Make Use of Keywords Being Ignored

When putting together an SEO plan, its understandable that small businesses fell that they are unable to contend with bigger competition, simply because it has a lower advertising budget.

Although it’s true that some bigger companies will have bigger budgets available, it can also mean that the some of the more unique terms are being ignored for popular search terms. These omissions can include long-tail keywords that are often used in the form of a question.

As well as being ignored by industry leaders, it’s also likely that unique terms will be easy to rank for. So although you won’t get a large volume of visits in comparison to other platforms, you will be receiving visits from customer who are likely to make a purchase.

It may take some time and the use of several tools, dedicating some time to finding obscure keywords can mean that your brand is being recognised for keywords that the competition has failed to account for.

SEO Lets Customers Know the Business Exist

A business can do a lot to promote its brand, but if its not making use of SEO, then its often the case that some marketing opportunities are being passed by.

The popularity of social media needs no explaining, but it’s important to know that it’s not only encouraging improved communication between friends, but it also working wonders when forming relationships between a brand and a customer.

Not only does SEO act as a ‘flair’ for SEO, but it also allows you to obtain reviews and capture customers within the vicinity easily. This ensures that your business is being promoted to local customers, while the reviews left by others can help you escalate up the ranks of Google.

When embracing SEO, it’s important that the business owners understand that the infrastructure used has changed over they years, as has the way people connect to online platforms. Relying on more aged approaches to SEO could mean that the business fails to gain any attraction when trying to stand out among the crowd.

SEO Is Cheaper Than Other Forms of Advertising

Digital marketing can be made up of several elements, which can sometimes include television and radio advertising. While there’s no doubt that this sort of advertising can be beneficial for businesses that are up and running, the cost of such advertising could mean it’s out of reach for small businesses due to their financial restrictions.

SEO is a cost-effective way of advertising, as it can be tailored to meet the company budget, regardless of how small it is. Of course, this may mean lowering your expectations when it comes to how many people you can capture in the initial stages, but it does allow small businesses to advertise without overspending.

Gain More Insight

Digital marketing in the past was limited simply due to the technology on offer. There was also less data to work with in relation to the customer’s journey while on the website, meaning that future strategies couldn’t be tailored. This would mean that although many campaigns would gain traction, not every customer demographic was accounted for.

Nowadays, it’s a vert different story. In fact, there is so much information available, that many businesses are ensuring that they have some sort of Customer Relationship Management tool in place to help them service their customers in the right way.

Although a small business may not need the same complicated infrastructure as that of a large corporation, SEO can still allow a business to expand the online operations of a brand and reach its desired customer base.

featured11 - How to Find a Legit Social Media Marketing Firm?

How to Find a Legit Social Media Marketing Firm?

Getting in the business industry is like dipping in a pool filled with hungry piranhas that can eat you whole. This scenario is a normal thing in the business sector. Small and starting businesses are being eaten by huge companies. If you don’t want to be a victim of these vultures, it is advised that you boost your branding by seeking help from social media marketing agencies such as Summon Digital.

How can you find the best? Find it out here!

1. Be prepared for the interview portion.

31 - How to Find a Legit Social Media Marketing Firm?

When it comes to social media marketing firms, you should be aware that numerous companies are claiming that they are the top or the best agency with the lowest rates. After hiring them, that’s the only time you’ll know that they are nothing but scammers. Find out if the firm is legit by going through each social media marketing agency online and pick three candidate that best appeal to your interview.

2. Ensure that your clarify your objective

32 - How to Find a Legit Social Media Marketing Firm?

Is the agency helping you decide when it comes to your distinct objective? Whatever your objective is, make sure that the agency can help you become more visible to your audience without you and your employees spending so much time in your social media platform.

3. Always protect your business reputation

33 - How to Find a Legit Social Media Marketing Firm?

If you experienced having your company ruined by a social media marketing agency by posting not so good information on your social media platform, you are having second taught in hiring another one. In this case, you must ensure that the agency attracts prospective consumer to access your social media pages.

Your profile says a lot about and your business. Make sure that the agency you’ll work with can do your profile and ask them if they can change if upgrades are made.

4. Updated on Trends

34 - How to Find a Legit Social Media Marketing Firm?

Ask the potential agency on how they handle upgrades that can take place in social media in the near future. If they can’t seem to answer your question, it is a sign that you are not working with a top agency.

By doing these, you can save yourself from bogus agencies preying on marketers like you.

featured10 - Rare Content for your Social Media Marketing

Rare Content for your Social Media Marketing

The game is on and you are up against small and huge businesses selling the same products and services. What will you do to win this battle? Winning or having an edge over your business competitors is a tough thing to do. You have to go beyond what your competitors are planning and what’s worst, they are instances that you have to do the impossible just to succeed and attract your target consumers.

Do not let this taught bring you down because companies like Content and Motion are here to help you out. According to this leading agency, if you want to stand-out and win your audience interest, the best thing you can do is to focus on your social media marketing content. Why?

Social Media apps are widely used today by everybody through day and night. If you want to reach your audience effectively social media is the way to go. In social media marketing, marketers like you are required to come up with original social media contents to be posted daily.

If so many ideas and things are running through your head, you’ll find it hard to come up with fresh and unique contents. With this article, you’ll be able to learn more ideas that you can use as you create your next social media posts.

Idea #1 Following Schedule of Daily Themes

21 - Rare Content for your Social Media Marketing

You should choose a theme for specific days of the week so that it would be easier for you to come up with fresh contents for your social media accounts. By following themes you are boosting consistency for your brand and you are giving your audience something to look up to.

Idea #2 Write content about unusual holidays

22 - Rare Content for your Social Media Marketing

Do you know every day of the year claims an unusual holiday? You don’t believe, are you aware that October 8 is considered as Octopus Day? Yap, unusual it is. Used these funny holidays to your advantage by creating contents about it, for sure your audience has never heard of it before. Have fun posting these holidays and make sure to include a Hashtag.

Ideas #3 Go and pose a very attracting question

23 - Rare Content for your Social Media Marketing

The people or what we call now as “netizens” are fond of giving away their opinions and sharing their personal experiences on social media and you can actually see that on Facebook. To engage with them, start your content by asking a question.

For instance, you are marketing your restaurant, ask simple questions like “what do you like to eat on a date?” or “what kind of meal do you prefer during the family day?” To boost its visibility, you should include a graphic or photo.

Idea #4 Ask your audience to participate to the “Fill in the Blank”

24 - Rare Content for your Social Media Marketing

For more attracting posts, start it off with a fill in the blank, this can help attract conversation on your social media account.

Do these crazy and fun ideas as you create your next social media marketing posts and for sure the netizens will find your contents very fresh, funny, and unique all at the same time.

The Ultimate Guide to Local SEO for Multi Location Businesses Blog Image1 - The Art Of Local SEO - How To Rank Your Local Business

The Art Of Local SEO – How To Rank Your Local Business

The arrival of the Internet has changed the way businesses operate and do business. As it has blurred geographical boundaries, the internet has allowed companies to penetrate new markets without the burden of injecting large amounts of capital investment.

In today’s day and age, it is almost unthinkable to not have a digital presence of some sort. Everyone is online; hence it is essential if you want to reach your target market, that you solidify your virtual footprint.

It is a great opportunity for small business owners to widen their customer base at a smaller cost. Marketing through the right channels and right consumers can be the most favorable way to make a mark when running a business in a narrow geographical location.

For example, if a customer wants a service that is within his physical reach or requires anything to be fixed would need business establishments which is in the near vicinity to cater to his needs.

Your local SEO strategy aims to get your business page ranked higher in local searches when requested by the people living in nearby neighborhoods.

There are certain techniques and strategies used in SEO to make your local business website appear in the top results when searched for that particular area.

Using “location” as A keyword

Be it local or worldwide, the basics of SEO remain the same with a few precise changes. Using “location” as the keyword brings out the best results in order to attract consumers from a specific topographical location.

“Location” may be added to site content, meta text, blog post content, description or anywhere else and increases the chances of your website appearing higher in the search results for that specific product. When a search takes place from any specific location, regional business websites can appear if effective SEO techniques are implemented.

Business Listings

When you are looking to generate awareness for your business with respect to location, using sites like Yelp, Google places, Bing, Yahoo Local give a major boost to you ranking higher on search engine result pages.

Regional Directories

You may think that this is quite an obsolete way of marketing but regional or town directories are still quite a useful way for people to look for their desired businesses.

Getting registered on the online version of such directories like Yelp, CitySearch or Merchant Circle is quite a vital aspect that is often overlooked this is why we would always suggest that you use something like Citations Builder which is the best citation building service.

The information should comprise of a user friendly website link, contact details, hours of operation as well as directions to the physical existence of the business.

Have a Social Media Presence

Nothing is being used more than different modes of social media these days such as Facebook, Twitter or Instagram. This is essentially a marketing channel that will expand your existing database of clients to include friends of friends, family members, gain referrals and reach residents who live nearby.

Platforms like Hootsuite and Tiny Torch allow you to keep a track of whenever your business gets a mention and you can get alerts. Make sure that you as the business owner respond to it, be it positive or negative which leaves a positive impact on the customer that you care.

Google does keep positive reviews under consideration in order to rank you higher among the local pack.

Aquiring Locak Backlinks

Getting back links with respect to location may be very difficult. But if a business replies with specific keywords and location to certain blog posts that are relevant to your business type and location, the search engine may grab that data.

If it is necessary to register with the blog to leave a comment. Dropping a keyword and location may also help.

On Page Updates For Your Websites

You may need to formulate the meta description and title of your web page very wisely as the text of meta description and titles appears in search results. This will act as a “mini-ad” for your web page.

This can be a great way of luring the customer to visit your web page as the title tag comprises of 50 to 60 characters while the meta description tags can have 160 to 200 characters. This is a very beneficial and valuable way to attract the user.

Do not blow the chance of being clicked on by using irrelevant and useless text in the title or meta description. If your text for the HTML elements isn’t unique and compelling, then your click through rate will suffer to a great deal.

  • Do not waste this precious space by not providing helpful relevant information.
  • Include the name of your city the business is in.
  • Use one keyword closer to the beginning of the tag.

Adding Testimonials

It is high time that businesses start realizing how integral and influential it is to be having online positive reviews. Research shows that about 84% of respondents value online testimonials as much as they value personal recommendations from their trusted social circle.

Using Structures Data On Your Website

Structured data mark up can be easily added to the site’s code which is commonly known as “schema markup” or “ markup”. This provides additional information about the business like your services offered, how much you charge, the reviews you have gained and a lot more.

This is not a very widely used tool, only 31.3% of websites use this attribute. Keeping that in mind, if you start using it, you can make your local business stand out among the rest.

Google also wants you to add data markup because it makes it easier for the search engine to determine what services you provide and quickly pick it to be displayed on the search results.

Targeting The Right Audience

Targeting the right and appropriate audience can give a boost to your business that is incomparable. There has to be a set of specific customers whom you will market your product to. As a business owner, no one else can be more aware of the market needs.

Keep yourself in the shoes of the customers and think of the keywords you would use if you would require the services your business offers. This process of elimination can drastically increase your sales and reduce your efforts by a great deal.


featured9 - 10 Unbreakable Laws of SMM

10 Unbreakable Laws of SMM

Social Media is very powerful these days. The majority of people is engaging on it a daily basis and spends a lot of time with it. If you want to succeed in your business, you should learn to leverage the power of content and social media marketing. But, let me tell you that getting started without any experience could be really challenging on your part.

Meaning of Social Media Marketing

It is important that before engaging in social media marketing, you are fully aware of the fundamentals. Begin with the meaning of social media marketing. The truth is, social media marketing is really a broad term so let’s go for the most popular definition which is, it is a methodical use of marketing on other technological concepts in order to achieve a specific goal for a company.

Now that you are aware of its meaning, the next thing you should know is that social media marketing has laws that can help you build a strong foundation that can serve your customers and your brand.

10 Laws of Social Media Marketing:

1. The Law of Listening, if you want to succeed in social media and content marketing, you have to listen and less talking. Join discussions and read your online targets preferred online contents.

2. The Law of Focus, you should learn to specialize by focusing on social media and content marketing strategy that are capable of strengthening a brand.

3. The Law of Quality, it is better to have thousands of users who read, share and talk about your content than have hundreds of thousands of users connecting to your with the first time and eventually disappear.

4. The Law of Patience, success does not happen overnight. You should be patient as you wait for results.

5. The Law of Compounding, by publishing quality contents and workhard to build quality followers. They will share your content with their very own audience on different social media platforms. The sharing of contents can open new entry points to search engines.

6. The Law of Influence, spend time interacting with online influencers in your market who have quality audiences and are interested in your products and services. Make sure to connect with these people and build a sturdy relationship.

7. The Law of Value, stop spending so much time promoting your products on social media, instead, start adding value to your conversations by creating amazing contents and developing a relationship that could last.

8. The Law of Acknowledgement, building good relationships is essential to the success of social media marketing, so make sure that you are acknowledging everyone who is reaching out to you.

9. The Law of Accessibility. If you want to succeed, do not publish your content and just disappear. Make sure that you are available to your audience which means, you have to constantly publish content and participate in conversations.

10. The Law of Reciprocity. Never expect that people will talk about your content and share it with others. Instead of feeling sad, you should spend a portion of your time sharing and talking about contents that are published by others.

It is said that “laws are meant to be broken” but, in social media marketing, laws should be followed to ensure once success in reaching out their audience.

linkbuilding - Link Building Tips & Tricks For Small Businesses

Link Building Tips & Tricks For Small Businesses

The digital marketing phenomena known as search engine optimisation used to rely heavily on the concept of link building. However, as business ventures and corporations took to controversial link building exercises, Google revamped its strategy. Regardless, it has managed to retain its position as a critical ranking factor on search engine result pages.

What is Link Building?

If someone has placed a direct link to your website, it reflects as an authentic source of information and content. That link represents the worth of your content as someone has quoted it as a reference. This is what encouraged search engine giant Google to utilise backlinks as a ranking variable. It was a simple concept: the higher the number of links from external, pertinent websites to your website, the higher you would be placed on a search engine result page.

With time, Google’s ability to the relevance and quality of a backlink has increased greatly. It has started to identify questionable links and has stringent penalty policies to deal with entities engaging in such practices. Despite this, when done right, link building can be an effective factor in giving you a top position on Google’s result pages. Keep in mind that other factors have also come into play for ranking decisions since the last few years.

Check out our top tips for link building in the year 2018 shared to us by the team at Edinburgh SEO.

Use Research and Data

The application of research and data is one of the most powerful link-building techniques to exist in the virtual realm. As per search engine optimisation gurus, it is seventy percent more effective than other link building alternatives. The essence of first hand primary research cannot be emphasised enough. Nothing holds greater value then original, verified content that shares industrial insights and never-shared before facts. Being the owner of such data gives you the right to earn backlinks and will bring people over to you instead of you being the one to chase them.

How can you apply this to link building?

  1. Find a subject area that will add value to your target audience. For instance, a fitness club can explore and research the effectiveness of different kinds of diets. It can invite its members to take part and research which diet yielded the greatest amount of weight loss results.
  2. Do your own primary research. Taking the example from above, it is recommended to focus on a specific sample size and implement demographic parameters such as age and gender. Gather as many variables as you can and remember that the more your research data is illustrative of a specialised customer or industry group, the higher the possibility of building links.
  3. Publish your findings and dress it up with some design feel. Use graphs, charts and tables to make it reader friendly.
  4. Kick off a series of content pieces that stem from your primary research. We are talking podcasts, blog posts, infographics, tweets and what not.
  5. It is imperative that you get your research out there and promote it productively. Let people know that there is a whole plethora of knowledge that you are willing to share about the world of fitness.

Publish Content on Social Media Platforms

The majority of search engine optimisation companies find posting content on social media platforms to be effective 68% of the time. This increasing the chances of your content gaining links naturally and also helps gain social signals.

How can you apply this to link building?

  1. Download social listening programs to locate your target market on social media. This will help you monitor the strength of your brand on these platforms and let you concentrate your efforts on solidifying the brand footprint on those channels.
  2. Evaluate the engagement rate on these social media platforms and see which is the most popular.
  3. Draft content that is going to captivate your consumer’s interest.
  4. Re-promote your existing content: Keep the word going about your research and reformat it in different ways to share it. Publish it on other platforms besides Facebook – such as Instagram & Snapchat. Do give it a slight mention every other week to keep attracting different links.

Posting Sector Specific Interviews

This is another effective tool in link building for search engine optimisation techniques. Publishing interviews from leading experts in your niche or industry will appeal to other online businesses to quote you as a resource and link to your website as well. in order to have a successful interview, keep the following two things in mind: try to find a key influencer or a popular voice in your industry and also structure your interview questions to be relevant. Create your questioning strategy around benchmarked practices, business values, customer insights and such.

How can you apply this to link building?

  1. Research and do your due diligence.  Try to find what subjects are of interest to your customer market and which opinion leaders will be able to offer valuable business insights to your audience. Learn about your selected interview candidate’s background to verify his authenticity and expertise on the topic.
  2. Plan your questions in advance. Put your list of questions together that will peak your reader’s inquisitiveness and serve as a solution to any points of concern.
  3. As important as it is to stay on track during the interview and direct the flow of conversation towards your relevant topic, it is acceptable to incorporate some other topics of interest as well.
  4. Just like original primary research, formal interview specific interviews are going to be useless if you are unable to share them with the world.
  5. Recycle your content and share your interviews on variant social media platforms. Do send the final version of your interview to your candidate as well as he may want to link to it as well

Using Videos to Generate Links

There are plenty of user friendly online tools that can help you edit and promote your videos.  Similar to the content promotion strategies above, share your videos on social media and post it on Youtube as well. This will help you gain exposure and obtain external relevant links.

featured8 - Latest Trends in Social Media Marketing to Watch Out for!

Latest Trends in Social Media Marketing to Watch Out for!

The business sector is known as the most chaotic industry. Why? For the reason that thousands of businesses and companies are going against each other to compete for sale and for consumers, well, that’s how businesses really work.

Due to the intense competition taking place on online businesses and on actual stores, the majority of brands are doing everything they can and are trying new ways on how they can connect with their audience using various platforms. The greatest challenge they have to face is that consumer’s attention spans are decreasing to eight (8) seconds. With social media, every user scrolls down through 300 feet of content providing the smallest window of opportunity to grab their attention.

If you’re a marketer, how will you handle the situation and how will you get your consumers once again?

For professional marketers, you should take advantage of the evolving development of social media content marketing but you have to use a more humane approach. To help you out, here are some of the latest trends in social media content marketing that are predicted to make a huge impact this 2018.

1. Businesses Investing in Talent

At this very moment, companies are well-aware of the fact that social media is essential when it comes to consumer and brand engagement that’s why they have been investing and focuses more on their social strategies. This year, you’ll see company’s focus on this and on hiring qualified individuals that are capable of providing contents for all social media platforms.

2. A Mobile Ready Content

Believe it or not, 9 out of 10 people spend hours engaging on social media platforms like Facebook. This app has been the most popular platform for years and as the majority continues to involve to it, brands will surely spend more time and effort just to provide mobile-ready content. This type of content is much simpler and has few presses to engage with but, contents like these require knowledgeable and experienced workers.

3. Fuller or Richer forms of Content

In general, rich content is equivalent to more engagement. This content refers to any content that is able to facilitate user interaction. For the best sample, videos are in the top. It requires users to click play and is encouraging them to leave some comments.

4. Aligning with User Generated Content

It is proven that 80% of online users trust online consumer opinions and higher percent prefer recommendations from people they know. As you create a social strategy, it is the right time to leverage on user-generated contents. This 2018, you’ll be able to see brands spend more time with this type of contents.

Social media platforms are presenting new opportunities in creating contents that can build a meaningful relationship with the consumer. If you want your business to succeed this 2018, you should learn to adjust to the latest trends.

info3 - Latest Trends in Social Media Marketing to Watch Out for!
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cybersecurity locks stock e1496685328726 - 4 Ways To Keep Your Business Data Safe And Secure

4 Ways To Keep Your Business Data Safe And Secure

Nowadays it is more important than ever to keep your business data safe and secure. This includes anything from marketing materials and financial records for the business to your staff’s personal details and the banking information for your customers. Protecting any data you store online is imperative to the success of your company.

Any business can suffer from a security breach, regardless of the size and it is not the easiest thing to secure data that is stored online. To help your company avoid security breaches and your secure data falling into the wrong hands, we have put together a guide with four key steps that you should follow.

Understand Properly The Data You Need To Keep Safe And The Risks

You need to take a good look at all of the data you are currently holding, from supplier details, customer information to financial data. Whatever you hold on file somewhere, take a look at it and determine just how sensitive each form of data actually is to your business. Make a record of where it is stored and how easy it might be for you to lose that data or for it to be leaked by viruses or even hackers.

Pay especially close attention to the most confidential and sensitive information you might have stored such as customer records and financial records. It is a legal obligation on your part to ensure that this information is kept secure.

It is recommended that you keep as comprehensive a record as possible that outlines exactly where this data is stored, how regularly it is accessed and by whom in your company or otherwise. This can be used to help you pinpoint any risks there may be to the data held and how it is held by your company.

Ensure Your Network Is Properly Protected

The first thing you need to do is make sure you have proper protection in place for your network from malware. This is a malicious form of software which can be used to cause damage to your systems and data, often without you having any idea it has occurred.

Put a reputable and powerful firewall in place and invest in top notch security software that does more than the firewall to protect your network against suspicious websites, identity thieves and hackers.

Select a software package that will be able to keep track of all devices and has location awareness so it can keep your employees protected regardless of the device they are using or where they are located at the time. As the number of employees in general bringing their own gadgets and handheld devices to their place of work is increasing, you need to establish a special ‘bring your own device’ scheme and implement the appropriate mobility management technologies and solutions.

Choose a security solution that will update automatically to upgrade your protection against the most current threats. Remember, you are really only as safe as the last update you made. It may be worth investing in the services of a security specialist with a core working background in the online and digital security field. Preferrably they should have insight and understanding into the needs of a small business and have a good record and experience dealing with multiple security threats.

You next need to look at exactly where you are storing the data. Many companies prefer to have one place where they store all their data and then just back it up and mirror it elsewhere so it can still be accessed safely if something happens. We recently had a chat with digital ID who are the now UK’s largest ID card company. One of their key objectives for this year is to continue to improve their internal security systems, as well as making sure all customer data continues to be secure across their internal network.

It is common sense also to fully educate your employees on why it is so vital that they do not keep confidential and sensitive data on their own devices and computers. Just one virus on one computer could cause numerous serious problems for the company’s entire network.

Consider the merits of using encryption for your most sensitive and confidential data and put security procedures in place for servers stored within your building.

Control The Use Of Data

Ensure that all of your employees only has access to the information relevant to their position or role. This will help reduce the chance of things being deleted or altered that shouldn’t. Various CRM systems and Microsoft Windows gives you the option to grant different access levels to different users.

Everyone in your company should know how to utilise security protocols such as IPSec and SSL and encrypt sensitive data before uploading it as well as transferring it in the correct way. You need to ensure that when your data is being transferred to a 3rd party that you hold on to the data as long as required and are in compliance with the legislation for data protection.

Properly Train Your Staff

On average, 80% of data lost in a company is through human errors. Training is therefore a key to avoiding this. Along with using software that features backup functions, you need to properly train your employees on the implications of sensitive documents and data being leaked and the best practices to prevent it from happening.

Explain to your workers exactly what they cannot and can use computers on the company network for, along with the applications that they should avoid downloading. Properly educate them on the kinds of emails that they should not send or open and set-up email quarantine that is accessible for suspicious-looking emails before they ever get to an inbox. Although this will mean that it takes longer for staff to retrieve emails that in the end are safe, it is better to prevent issues than trying to correct them.

You need to send your employees details about the latest versions of the software they normally use and a guide on how to download updates and newer versions.

Finally, one of the most important things you should make the time to team your staff is how to create strong passwords for themselves – ideally ones that are 8 or more characters and made up of a collection of numbers and letters. Passwords should also be changed regularly and you could make use of password managers that are secure so that staff don’t have to remember tricky passwords.

In the end, the security of data is, on some level at least, everyone’s responsibility, so you you should always make it a habit of involving your employees when it comes to creating and establishing new measures for data security.

featured6 - Build Your Winning Brand Strategy in Just 4 Steps

Build Your Winning Brand Strategy in Just 4 Steps

Did you know what the most important fragment of your business is? Your brand is the most important fragment of your business. As a matter of fact, HubSpot stated that a brand does not refer to the product, the business’ name, or the business site. A brand has a bigger meaning than those things because it is something that is elusive.

This pertains to what your clients think the moment they see or hear your brand. It also covers the emotional and factual aspect of your clients. But with a winning brand strategy, you can influence the perception of your clients. Learn how you to make a brand strategy in just 4 steps.

Identify Your Brand Strategy

11 - Build Your Winning Brand Strategy in Just 4 Steps

What is the message that your business wants to deliver to your audience? What do you want them to think every time they hear or see your brand name? Do you have a solid purpose to drive your business?

All brands make promises to customers, so come up with something unique for people will notice your brand. The first thing that you need to have is a defined purpose. Given that every business aims to make money, you have to think of a vision that will make difference in the world and encourage customers to pick your brand over your competitors. For example, Coca-Cola delivers a message through using a lifestyle platform to inspire and communicate hope to the audience.

Develop Your Brand

12 - Build Your Winning Brand Strategy in Just 4 Steps

Your business’ personality is very important, so find ways on how you can improve it all the time. So some research whether the design and digital media tactics will help boost your brand personality. Find out how your brand will be able to show customers the value you want them to learn from your business.

If your business says you value customers over everything, how will your business show it to them every day? Gone are the days where companies just focus on words of promises alone. Do something and put your vision and mission into action. Make your brand’s promise come true.

Communicate Your Brand

13 - Build Your Winning Brand Strategy in Just 4 Steps

The avenues of communication that your business uses should be consistent and inclined to your brand’s personality. Come up with specific goals and strategies to communicate your brand by appealing to your customers’ passionately and do some research on how people see your brand. Create different consumer personas to understand what your customers want and need.

Communicate Your Brand Strategy

14 - Build Your Winning Brand Strategy in Just 4 Steps

Once you have the winning brand strategy, it’s time to communicate it to your customers. Content and Motion provides informational input when it comes to marketing, content, social, and branding to help people like you to succeed.

You can also attend conferences that are related to your niche to help you come up with a successful brand. Keep on increasing your scope and network with people in and out of your industry to increase your chance of getting customers.

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