What is Inbound Marketing and can it really help your local business?

What is Inbound Marketing and can it really help your local business?

DIGITAL MARKETING
What is Inbound Marketing and can it really help your local business?
Victoria Islas, Founder & Digital Marketing
5 February 2018

Don Draper is dead

When you think about marketing or advertising I know you can probably imagine a group of creatives sitting around a long desk discussing evil schemes on how to sell your product or service to people. Well, that used to make sense, back in the Don Draper (Mad Men from AMC) times. Although we still do sit around, now a days we don’t do marketing or advertisement that way, actually that type of traditional marketing is pretty old school and it doesn’t work as well as before. 

 

A simple explanation of Inbound Marketing and why it works better than traditional marketing

So you are here because you want to know what Inbound Marketing is, why it’s better and I am going to make it simple for you to understand. Really it’s a modern approach to marketing, specifically online that helps increase traffic, leads and ultimately converts leads into loyal customers by providing marketing that is not disruptive but rather marketing that people will truly love. But just because it’s simple to understand doesn’t mean it’s easy to do and it will take a lot of your brain, consistency and dedication to make it all work for your local business. Are you ready for Inbound Marketing?

 

Can Inbound Marketing really help your business or is it fluff?

Inbound Marketing is as real as the eyes you are using to read this article and I truly believe it can change the game for your local business. The only way to truly use Inbound Marketing is by FIRST understanding the methodology which is Attract, Convert, Close and Delight. By implementing this marketing methodology you are on your way to getting customers or clients to come to you rather than the other way around!

The only way to truly use Inbound Marketing is by FIRST understanding the methodology which is Attract, Convert, Close and Delight.

Before getting started realize and keep in mind that Inbound Marketing is all about creating relevant content that people find useful.

 

Here is a great statistic by Hubspot:

Inbound Creates More Leads – 54% more leads are generated by inbound than outbound marketing.

 

The attract phase is where we turn strangers into visitors through blogging, SEO, relevant content and by utilizing social media. All these tools will allow you to attract the right people to your website.

The convert phase is where visitors turn into leads. You do this by creating more amazingly relevant assets, call-to-actions, landing pages with forms.

The close phase is where you turn that lead into a loyal customer and you do that by sending them inbound style emails. This is also where you get into your CRM and provide your sales team (or yourself) the details (not assumptions) to reach out to your potential lead.

The delight phase is where your loyal customer continue to have an awesome relationship with your business and you do that by keeping them engaged, staying relevant even after the purchase. Just delight the heck out of them!

 

Here is a 5-Minute Overview of “What is Inbound Marketing” created by Hubspot that i know you will find useful as well:

So now that you know a little more about Inbound Marketing and its Methodology – we want to continue this series of blog posts! In the next blog post we will be talking about the “buyers journey and its three stages”. Stay tuned.

 

So tell me, will you be implementing Inbound Marketing?  Can you see it working for your local business? Leave a comment below!

Resources:

https://www.hubspot.com/inbound-marketing

https://www.slideshare.net/HubSpot/what-is-inbound-marketing-29665969

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The Good and Bad of Building Your Own Website

The Good and Bad of Building Your Own Website

The Good and Bad of Building Your Own Website

1/14/2018 | By Victoria Islas @ Creative Two

The common website story of the new business in town

 

You just started your dream business and you feel super pumped. You’re getting your business plan together and marketing plan too. And as your building your marketing plan you come across the idea of starting your website. The problem is you aren’t a pro but you still think you can handle building your own website. So what do you do? You turn to Google of course! Then you search for “website design builder” because at this point you don’t have the budget to pay a freelance website designer/ developer by the hour and you definitely don’t have the budget for an agency. The first website builders that pop up are Squarespace, WIX and even GoDaddy. Decisions, decisions.

 

The good of building your own website

 

I hope you could relate to the story. I definitely don’t like making assumptions so I used the many stories of our own clients and what they went through. But if you are on the same page keep reading, If you didn’t relate keep reading because, in the end, you are here because you are debating whether or not you should build your own website and that still relates to you.

 

So why should you build your own website? Well, there are many awesome reasons to take this route.

  • It helps keep cost down when you first starting your business. Who wouldn’t want to save a few extra dollars?
  • Most of the website builders are easy-to-use, have tons of templates to get you started and have great customer service (but beware, not all are equal).
  • It helps you get an inside look at how websites are built and its requirements to go live. Is it a win-win right? You are learning as you build.
  • You get educated on website terminology that can come in handy later (when you’re ready to upgrade your website and hire a professional). Learning how to speak geek is always good!
  • You learn about graphic and website design as you go as well. No matter what, you’re going to have to take graphics and manipulate them to fit your website template.
  • You’ll also learn about website copy writing and how important it is (hopefully).
  • You have 100% control of your own website and you can build it exactly how you imagined in your head.
  • You can get your website done on your own time schedule.

 

The Good – In Summary

In summary, building your own website is cost-effective for startup businesses, it’s easy and you’ll have tons of website template options to choose from, the experience will be very educational overall and you’ll have total control in several aspects of the website project.

 

The Bad of Building Your Own Website

 

Unless you’re a renaissance man (or woman) sometimes we need to sacrifice some of our control to let someone help us. This isn’t a bad thing at all! Tim Ferris, the author of the 4-Hour Week, is a great example of this lifestyle – outsourcing, or getting others to do what you just don’t have the time to do or isn’t really your forte can be a really great thing for your business, especially at the beginning stages. Getting into this mindset can actually help grow your business. Trust me on this one too, releasing a little of the stress will also help you on a personal level.

 

So why should you allow a website designer or website agency to build your website? And what is the bad part of trying to build your own website? Well let’s get to that now:

  • You most likely will lack meeting your website vision and goals. Getting a website done by a professional might not be cost-effective at first but if you team up with the right person or team it will be the best investment you will make in the long run. Saving a few extra dollars to invest can actually bring ROI after your professional website launches because a professional will know what strategies to use, what copy writing will sell and which design will work to meet your business vision and goals. Your vision might be great but a professional can make it even better!
  • Building your own website can take hours and hours because you are going to have to learn about website strategy, website design, website development (in some cases), graphic design website copy writing and so much more. It will leave you launching your website late, or even worse, never.
  • Website control is a thing of the past. Website designers and agencies can now give you the same control over your website as a website builder with CMS systems (Content Management Systems).
  • Remember how I said you’d spend hours having to learn about website design and all that other stuff? Well, you’d also have to spend time updating your website every month and upgrading your website every year to keep up with the internet and trends. Websites need to be updated and upgraded constantly so this too, will take a lot of your time. An agency can take care of this for you and reduce the amount of time you would have spent with a website builder. Ask them about their maintenance plans; they most likely will have one included with the service.
  • Not enough Features! Last but not least, depending on what company you use, drag and drop website builders might sound great at first but when you call in to ask about a feature you might find out that they don’t have it or they charge extra fees for the feature you are looking for. And that’s not it! Sometimes you might even find yourself having to implement it yourself and well if you don’t know how you might even end up spending money hiring a professional to do it anyways. Why not start your website with the features, to begin with?
  • You’ll end up looking like everyone else if you don’t customize the website template you choose within the website builder. Part of building a business includes spending the time to brand yourself and if you end up using the same template as everyone else, you won’t be unique and you won’t stand out from your competitors. It’s like going to a business party and you and your competitor are using the same exact t-shirt or tie. Yikes.

 

The Bad – In Summary

In summary, building your own website will take a lot of the time you should be spending to run your business, building your own website might not be the wisest choice if you are looking for ROI, you’re going to have to update your website on a monthly basis on your own and even upgrading it every year to keep up with the internet changes and trends, the drag and drop website builders that are easy to use won’t have all the features you are envisioning for your website which will leave you feeling off and finally using website templates won’t allow you to completely brand your business if you don’t customize them and you’re going to end up looking the same.

 

Do you want to add to our good and bad list? Comment below! We would love to hear from you.

Facebook will penalize your unfriendly mobile website

Facebook will penalize your unfriendly mobile website

Facebook just got serious about mobile websites. Did you know they will no longer take your ugly mobile experience? It seems that the more we advance forward, the more important user experience is with mobile and tablet websites. 

 

Why Facebook cares

Just like Google, Facebook is really taking into consideration their users. They care about you and me and what we have to say. One thing that has been reported to Facebook over and over again by its users is that they hate “clicking on links within the news feed that lead to very slow mobile websites”. So isn’t that speed then? Yes! Speed, believe it or not, is considered part of a users experience when they visit your website. If it’s slow, i will have a “poor user experience” on your website. Make sense?

 

What does this all mean?

If your website has a poor experience within mobile or tablet devices Facebook will take this into account for its news feed section. They are going to work hard on only providing the best sources for their users. So if you are not on track and taking this seriously you will fall behind as a business or organization IF you are heavily using Facebook for your promotional / online marketing efforts.

 

What we can expect now

Over the next several months (as reported by facebook) you can expect Facebook to slowly implement this idea /algorithm. Websites that are “too slow” and have a “poor user experience” will slowly start to lose traffic over time and might not even appear within in any users news feed.

 

How do i start working on my user experience?

We advice you to start working on your user experience immediately if you are using Facebook on a daily basis for your business or organization.

Here are a few of our recommendations to start today:

 

 

  • Head over to your web hosting company – Are you on shared hosting or VPS? Switch over to VPS servers to get your website faster. Sharing a server slows down your website.

 

Article Author

Victoria Islas – Founder of Creative Two / Omni Online Marketer & Designer

She is inbound marketing certified, loves creating amazing projects for her clients and enjoys reading a great book on marketing or music. On other days, she is spending time with her kettlebells and playing guitar.

How to enlarge or make logo bigger on Mobile Site – Divi Theme

How to enlarge or make logo bigger on Mobile Site – Divi Theme

There are little things in Divi Theme that we wish we’re easier to take care of within the “Theme Customizer”. Sadly, that is not the case BUT today i am providing you with code to enlarge or “make bigger” the mobile logo. Depending on your preference sometimes the logo might be too small within the mobile version of your website, this code will take care of it for you!

Just copy and paste at: Divi > Theme Options > Custom CSS

Keep in mind that you can modify the height and width to your needs. Go in and play around with the percentage numbers.

Article Author

Victoria Islas – Founder of Creative Two / Omni Online Marketer & Designer

She is inbound marketing certified, loves creating amazing projects for her clients and enjoys reading a great book on marketing or music. On other days, she is spending time with her kettlebells and playing guitar.

How to Create an HTML Rollover Image in Divi (Code Fixed)

How to Create an HTML Rollover Image in Divi (Code Fixed)

I know you want the cool and easy HTML rollover effect that Mak over at Elegant Themes mentioned in this video and blog post. But ALOT of you had trouble with the code and today i am debugging and showing you how to add a link to the rollover as so many of you wanted.

 

This code has rollover effect + opens link within your website (copy and paste) in the CODE MODULE:

This code has rollover effect + opens link in a new page (copy and paste) in the CODE MODULE: