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Best Ways to Advertising for Free

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New marketers often come online, hoping to make their fortune, but the success rate is slim. The reasons for that difference between the successful and the unsuccessful are myriad, but one reason is that folks don’t advertise enough or in the right ways. Did you know that there are some great free ways to get all the visitors you need?

The best free advertising online today comes from three distinct practices:

* Writing a blog
* Writing articles
* Using traffic exchanges

Let’s look at these three methods a bit closer.

Writing a blog is simple and anyone can do it. “Weblogs,” or as we’ve come to call them—blogs, can be about anything, but I’d advise you to write about something you know well. What’s your passion or hobby? Do you have some specialized knowledge that you can rely on to write a blog that others will subscribe to and enjoy? Those are good places to start. But whatever the subject may be, you can capitalize by advertising the site you want to promote in a sidebar to the blog, where space is provided for you to enter links and text ads. Or, you can include information about a product that complements what you’re writing about from another source. For instance, if you’re writing a blog about fly fishing, use it to advertise books about fly fishing that are available at Amazon.com with an affiliate link.

The second avenue to great free advertising is article writing. Again, you’ll want to write about things you know. For instance, if you’re the head of the PTA, you may have some great ideas about fund-raising. Or, if you’re a banker, you may want to write about different types of investment opportunities. Whatever you write about should be accurate and concise for two reasons: you want the article to be accepted by distribution sites and you want people to enjoy your writing. This may prompt them to find other articles that you have written online and allow you to build a following. Once you have a regular reader core and have branded yourself as an author, people are more willing to join your program or pay for your product. Plus, once distributed, your article may sit on dozens of sites, rather than just one, giving you much broader exposure. Use a “resource box,” which is article-jargon for “signature file,” to advertise your opportunity because unlike blogs, you can’t write whatever you want. Articles should never be blatant advertisements.

When it comes to attracting visitors, traffic exchanges have a similar effect, though the results are more immediate. The premise of a traffic exchange is that you view other advertisers’ sites so that they will view yours. This is accomplished via many different means from clicking on words, numbers, or symbols to move to the next ad, or with some, by clicking text ads. Other than “pro” traffic exchanges, which charge for memberships, most traffic exchanges are free to join. The amount of advertising you receive is only limited by the amount of time you want to “surf” others’ sites. It’s a fast, easy way to get the job done.

Because each method of advertising has a unique way of attracting visitors, spending time cultivating all three options is advisable. Yet, if you want to be taken seriously, it’s best to learn how to write cogently before plunging in headlong. A negative first impression can color a reader’s opinion of you forever. Make that first encounter a good one. Since traffic exchanges take no time and little consideration to produce results, start there and expand to the other avenues of traffic as your writing ability grows. Next thing you know, you’ll need more bandwidth to accommodate all the visitors clamoring to support you!

Fivenson Studios is based in Ann Arbor, Michigan, our graphic design team specializes in logo and web page design, as well as marketing campaigns for social and print media. From flyers and brochures to targeted landing pages, we aim to bring your company into the spotlight and reach a greater range of potential customers.

Fivenson Studios: Michigan's #1 Graphic Design, Web Design, & Digital Advertising Agency 

Let's Get Social | http://fivensonstudios.com | (734) 224-9696 | Info@FivensonStudios.Com

Bing Search Engine Optimization

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Now that search engines like Bing are being talked about more readily, it’s clear that people want to know how to optimize for Microsoft’s search. Those who visit Bing will find that the site provides general search and a category search. Other than a large graphic, the search engine doesn’t appear to have a lot behind it. However, Microsoft has reported a more intelligent search engine and new search experience.

The question that website owners want to be answered is how the engine produces results differently than the previous search engine and what optimization techniques should be used compared to those used for Google and Yahoo! I’ve done quite a bit of research on the subject and it appears that there are only a few factors that might influence Bing results compared to Google. The thing to keep in mind is that following SEO best practices will rule the day.

When looking at top ranked websites, an in-depth analysis can be done to see which factors vary between top results. A recent comparison that I viewed showed that the number one ranking website on Bing was able to keep a leg up on the competition by having an older domain age and having inbound links from websites that included the primary keyword in the referring site’s title tag. In short, the top website was successful in building inbound links from other SEO sites and directories as opposed to being from unrelated websites.

What I find particularly interesting is that Bing is relying on many of the same factors that Google has been using from day one. The factor you should be most concerned with is inbound linking. Both search engines like inbound links. More importantly, they like relevant inbound links. Use this information to guide your SEO campaigns and determine which sites to target for link exchanges.

Organic search should be at the top of your list. If it is then you know where you need to focus, inbound linking. If you haven’t gotten on the organic rankings bandwagon, then start with on page optimization. Once your site is formatted appropriately, start with off page optimization and link building.

The other place you want to focus is content. Quality content is vital. But trying to attract users with quality content alone is not enough to rank on top for competitive keywords. Make is easy for others to link to your content and give them a reason to do so. Add time to your daily efforts to acquire links from relevant and authoritative sites to increase your rankings and keep you on top of search engine results.

You may be asking yourself which search engine you should be optimizing your website for. Based on what I’ve seen, I’m encouraged by preliminary Bing related findings. I believe that Bing is using many of the same factors that Google uses to evaluate a site’s relevance to a search query. As always, focus on white hat methods to optimize your site and follow SEO basics.

If you’re looking for a quick way to rank out on top for Bing, Google, or Yahoo! for that matter, consider leveraging existing websites that have some age, a number of inbound links from authority websites, and quality content.

Fivenson Studios is based in Ann Arbor, Michigan, our graphic design team specializes in logo and web page design, as well as marketing campaigns for social and print media. From flyers and brochures to targeted landing pages, we aim to bring your company into the spotlight and reach a greater range of potential customers.

Fivenson Studios: Michigan's #1 Graphic Design, Web Design, & Digital Advertising Agency 

Let's Get Social | http://fivensonstudios.com | (734) 224-9696 | Info@FivensonStudios.Com

The Cost Of SEO Search Engine Optimization

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I’m often asked by companies how much they should be spending on search engine optimization. As you can imagine, the answer to such a question depends on a large number of factors. An SEO budget could be based on the number of web properties you’re managing, how much work there is to do, and who will be doing the work for you.

Despite popular belief, search engine optimization is not free. Many times, individuals try to compare SEO to pay-per-click or search engine marketing, but the two are very dissimilar. Many of the costs associated with search engine optimization are involved in labor, site development, and acquisition of inbound links. Unlike PPC, search engine optimization does not work on a pay-per-click basis.

The costs associated with SEO begin with an expert analysis of your existing websites and web pages. Additional costs are related to competitive and keyword analysis. Many website owners consider doing these types of activities on their own. In many instances they can, however, they will need tools to do so. These resources aren’t free because they solve a need. When thinking about a do-it-yourself type commitment, you often spend valuable time – which has a monetary value and money paying for helpful online tools and resources.

Don’t underestimate the value of your time or the time that others are spending on search engine optimization related tasks. You should determine the costs of these activities in order to truly realize and manage your expense. Often times, you can hire a resource for much less per hour than you’re spending to do the necessary tasks of keyword research, competitive analysis, or link building.

Once you have completed a thorough review of your website, completed the necessary analysis, and have determined the keywords you are going to optimize for, the true work begins. And this work can be very costly. Again, you have to consider the time you are spending on SEO related activities and how much it’s costing you by not focusing on other, more challenging opportunities. The process of link building is an arduous one and can be outsourced to expedite the process or simply lower costs.

Online tools can also be helpful in determining or prioritizing tasks. Once you have specific tasks defined, locate a resource that can save you money. This may be a software application that helps you submit your URL to directories. It could be an article writing service that can do the heavy lifting for you. It may even be an outsource solution for finding link partners and managing link exchanges. All of this link building takes work and requires a good deal of time. So consider your options and choose the one that is most cost effective.

SEO is not free. You may consider it less expensive than other forms of online marketing because you’re doing much of the work on your own. However, you should consider the value of your time and alternatives for reducing your workload and improving results. Whether you are thinking about online resources or additional individuals to do many of the repetitive tasks necessary to build inbound links and corresponding page rank, your analysis should consider costs and benefits. Even though SEO is not free, it’s worth every penny.

 

Fivenson Studios is based in Ann Arbor, Michigan, our graphic design team specializes in logo and web page design, as well as marketing campaigns for social and print media. From flyers and brochures to targeted landing pages, we aim to bring your company into the spotlight and reach a greater range of potential customers.

Fivenson Studios: Michigan's #1 Graphic Design, Web Design, & Digital Advertising Agency 

Let's Get Social | http://fivensonstudios.com | (734) 224-9696 | Info@FivensonStudios.Com

Marketing Your Business with Text Messaging

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I remember the days before mobile phones. Remember when you needed to wait until your friend returned home from the beach, or from their cross-town visit with Aunt Bernice?

Those days are long gone!

It seems everyone has mobile phones these days. Everyone from six and seven-year-olds all the way to 90-year-old grannies! Some of you may be shaking your heads and thinking, “What is this world coming to? We made it without cell phones, why can’t they?!?”

Guess what?

Every time you make that statement or think that thought you are wasting your time. Things are NOT going to reverse, and people won’t return those mobile phones. So … accept it! 🙂

As business people, we need to recognize the tremendous opportunity we are presented with. With the emergence of text messaging, we now have an opportunity to reach our prospective customers with messages at the exact moment they are looking to buy.

The following are five steps you can use to effectively market your business with the use of text messaging. For the purpose of this article, I’ll use a restaurant as an example.

Step One – Create a Diner’s Club

Humans are born with a NEED to belong. If you look around you’ll see the most successful companies focus on this need and fill it. That’s why there are loyalty programs, frequent flyer programs, buying clubs, and an association for any possible niche in the world. The bottom line is people are natural joiners so give them a way to JOIN and become affiliated with your business.

Step Two – Create an Offer

Don’t be naive and think that just because you started a “Diner’s Club” that everyone will simply join. Keep in mind that along with emerging technology comes more information than anyone can possibly consume. This is making your customers think a bit longer about what they sign up for and if there isn’t something valuable for them, they simply won’t join.

Make sure that you specify exactly what they will get. Will they get a “buy one get one” offer or a free desert upon joining? Will they also get a free dinner on their birthday and a dinner for two on their anniversary? Will they get “Diner’s Club Members ONLY” special discounts throughout the month?

The what isn’t as important as the value. Your objective is to motivate them to send a text message to your special number which will automatically enroll them in your “Mobile Phone Mailing List,” so make sure the offer is something you feel has a great enough value that you would sign up for it yourself.

Step Three – Advertise Your Club

Once you’ve created your club, and created an irresistible offer, it’s time to let your customers know about it. Whether you create table tents, send a mailing to your “snail mail” list, send out an email blast, or have a contest among your waitstaff where you reward the person who gains the newest members for the month. Just make sure you have a solid advertising plan to get the word out.

Step Four – Send Updates … Not SPAM

Once you’ve followed the previous three steps and have built up your membership base, it’s time to send out your updates. Make sure you don’t ruin all the hard work you’ve done by spamming your list. Make sure the updates you send out have valuable offers that are irresistible to your members.

The best way to utilize this list is to send out offers on slower days of the week. If you happen to live in a climate that has very snowy days, send out an offer where your “Club Members” receive a FREE dinner if they come in that evening. The nice thing is people don’t normally eat alone. They’ll probably bring someone with them and it may be their entire family.

Step Five – Engage Your Members

As your membership base grows it will be important to engage your members with contests, and by sending out other useful or entertaining information. Maybe it’s a joke of the week, a quote of the month, or an occasional link to a funny article you’ve read. It doesn’t really matter what it is as long as it engages and entertains your members.

They’ll appreciate it if they receive information from you that isn’t ONLY asking them to spend money.

The more technology advances, the more opportunities we’ll have to engage our customers EVERYWHERE! It’s important to business owners and marketers to stay on top of technology and take advantage of these incredible opportunities.

It doesn’t matter what type of business you have if you use your imagination you can come up with ways to market your business with text messaging. Just be creative and you will put yourself and your company in a position to win.

Fivenson Studios is based in Ann Arbor, Michigan, our graphic design team specializes in logo and web page design, as well as marketing campaigns for social and print media. From flyers and brochures to targeted landing pages, we aim to bring your company into the spotlight and reach a greater range of potential customers.

Fivenson Studios: Michigan's #1 Graphic Design, Web Design, & Digital Advertising Agency 

Let's Get Social | http://fivensonstudios.com | (734) 224-9696 | Info@FivensonStudios.Com

The Essentials of Advertising Your Website Online

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Recently a customer spent a pretty hefty sum of money to promote his website. I knew something was wrong when he contacted me three weeks later saying he hadn't sold a single product.

His site looked good. A professional designer had given it a great look with slick graphics. Unfortunately, when I went in search of the product he was advertising, it took five or six clicks to find it.

Here is what happened to prospects and why the site wasn't selling anything:

  1. The prospect sees the ad.
  2. She clicks to the site.
  3. She is greeted with a doorway page.
  4. When she finds the link at the bottom of the doorway page she is taken to a home page with very little information on it.
  5. If she clicks on the "home" link she gets the doorway page again.
  6. If she clicks on the "about us" link she gets the home page she is already on.
  7. One more click and she might find the product page with the item she came looking for.

How many customers will look through page after page to find the product or service you advertised? Not many. Click rates go down dramatically after the first page. Hardly anyone will click three levels deep.

Moral of the story: have your opening web page clearly promote whatever you are advertising. Otherwise, your ad dollars may be wasted.

In today's rocky economy, people aren't willing to throw money at a product/service they know nothing about. Many online shoppers spend hours looking for the item that is exactly what they want. Your product/service could be exactly what they're looking for, but with scant, uninformative copy, how are they going to know?

So it's time to make a few changes, nothing too painful. You don't have to throw out your old copy and start from scratch. With some minor alterations, your copy can inform, motivate and charge prospects to take action and buy.

Here are a few changes you can make to improve the way your copy sells:

Give the Most Important Info First

Don't force people to wade through two pages of copy before they can discover what you're all about. Get to the point right up front, in the headline, subheading, and first few paragraphs. If you have too much filler copy in the beginning and don't start getting to the point until later, all that copy your visitors read will be lost on them. It will have been out of context because you didn't provide them with a context.

First Things First

Ever heard of "Inverted Pyramid Style" writing? It means starting with the most important sentence and following with lesser sentences. But not too many. Keep your paragraphs short so they don't overwhelm the reader.

Cut Words

Web copy should use about half the word count or less than conventional writing, so keep it short and to the point. This isn't the great American novel. Your goal is to make sure your audience can understand every word you say while reading quickly. If they have to stop to get a dictionary because you used too many cryptic words or jargon, you'll lose their interest.

No Sub Par Subheadings

Use only meaningful subheadings. Your subheadings should serve as an outline for your copy, making it easier for the reader to remember important points and gain and accurate overview of the products or services. If your subheadings are well-placed and meaningful, no one should have to read your copy twice.

One Idea Per Paragraph Doesn't load your paragraphs with ideas. Avoid confusing the reader by separating each idea into its own paragraph. This will also help you keep paragraphs shorter. Limiting paragraphs to one idea helps readers digest information a little at a time, promoting comprehension and recall.

Don't load your paragraphs with ideas. Avoid confusing the reader by separating each idea into its own paragraph. This will also help you keep paragraphs shorter. Limiting paragraphs to one idea helps readers digest information a little at a time, promoting comprehension and recall.

Use Bullets

When presenting information, it is helpful to separate the text with bullet points. Bulleted lists are easier to read than entire paragraphs, and the differentiation shows readers that they should pay special attention to bulleted points. In fact, readers are known for skipping over paragraphs and going straight for the bulleted text, so make whatever information is in bullets essential to motivating the sale.

Highlight Keywords

You're going to get a lot of "scanners" visiting your site. These are people who don't read word for word but glance over text looking or important information. Highlight keywords so they will know where to find this information.

Use Hype Where Hype is Needed

Hype is like opera. People either love it or loathe it. So be careful where you use it. With certain products, the hype has been known to reduce credibility, but with others, it increases excitement and motivates purchases. But if you want to add that punch here and there in your copy, use hype like paprika; just a pinch to tweak the flavor. An exclamation point here, a phrase in caps there, and you've got just enough to satisfy any palate

Fivenson Studios is based in Ann Arbor, Michigan, our graphic design team specializes in logo and web page design, as well as marketing campaigns for social and print media. From flyers and brochures to targeted landing pages, we aim to bring your company into the spotlight and reach a greater range of potential customers.

Fivenson Studios: Michigan's #1 Graphic Design, Web Design, & Digital Advertising Agency 

Let's Get Social | http://fivensonstudios.com | (734) 224-9696 | Info@FivensonStudios.Com

Marketing At Its Best

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I don’t know about you, but I feel like there is a scarcity of good marketing today. What do I mean “good marketing?” You know the kind of marketing that sticks with you and drives you to take action. The only marketing that has really moved me in the last couple of years has been from Apple. How do I know? I own 3 iPhones.

You might be thinking to yourself that it’s more the product that drives behavior than the marketing, and when it comes to the iPhone I don’t necessarily disagree. However, I would argue that in some ways, the marketing has to be even better than it does with your run of the mill product.

Apple has maintained a certain level of success with their marketing and now that marketing must not only tie together with previous marketing campaigns but convince current customers that their current products are no longer sufficient.

It appears that this is done, not through slight of hand, but by showing you what you can’t do with your current device. By illustrating this in a manner that is contradictory to your current satisfaction, it does make you feel like your iPhone– which was fine until a moment ago has suddenly become inadequate. To me, that’s really good marketing.

So what can be learned from the tens of millions that Apple spends on advertising every year? I think the answer to that question is to work in lock step with your product development team to showcase developments and tap the emotions of those using your products. When I use my iPhone, I feel empowered, cool, and complete. I wouldn’t have reached that conclusion without the help of marketing to get me there.

The lesson that I’ve learned is that marketing if done correctly helps us to define how we feel about a product. Once you have prospects and customers attaching emotions to your products, you develop loyal customers. The next time that you’re thinking about a marketing campaign, consider how you want your customers to feel about your product.

Manage the entire purchase decision process in order to consistently manage the experience to reinforce or produce these desired feelings. Once you’ve been able to do that successfully, your creative, marketing messages and promotions should be relatively easy to produce. Now that’s what I call good marketing.

Fivenson Studios is based in Ann Arbor, Michigan, our graphic design team specializes in logo and web page design, as well as marketing campaigns for social and print media. From flyers and brochures to targeted landing pages, we aim to bring your company into the spotlight and reach a greater range of potential customers.

Fivenson Studios: Michigan's #1 Graphic Design, Web Design, & Digital Advertising Agency 

Let's Get Social | http://fivensonstudios.com | (734) 224-9696 | Info@FivensonStudios.Com

How to Maximize Audience Engagement

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In uncertain times, it is important to return to the basics of audience acquisition for your next conference or meeting. It has been said before, but worth saying again that when it comes to driving attendance at conferences, “Content is King.” All of the fancy marketing strategies in the world won’t save your event if nobody sees it as worthwhile and relevant. Plain and simple, people want to return from conferences equipped with new information, insights, and strategies that will help them do their jobs better. If you are in any doubt that attendance at your event is being marred by content that does not speak to the everyday concerns f your target audience, then it is worth spending time addressing and overhauling the program. Aligning content with the needs of your audience and ensuring ongoing quality can be achieved in any number of ways. For example, and preferably in combination, put together a program advisory board comprised of experts in the field; establish an attendee feedback loop either through a survey or the voting system that captures their desires and impressions; invest in your speakers by developing a coaching program that hones and sharpens their communication and presentation skills.

Keep it Simple

Once convinced that the content you are offering speaks directly to your target audience, craft your message in clear and simple terms. What does your event offer and why is it worth the time, money and effort to attend? Develop simple statements that tie the benefits of attending your event back to the target’s ability to do a better job, and roll these out throughout your campaign. For example, does your event teach advanced techniques that will contribute to superior performance, mitigate the risks of job specific pitfalls or provide mandatory industry credentialing?

Be Concrete

The key to crafting the right message is to be concrete. You’ll find it easy to be concrete if you truly know your target. Combining professional needs with the psychographic analysis is a proven way to better understand your target audience and deliver relevant content and messaging. Analysis of this kind will also allow you to understand if your conference has multiple target audiences. If so, it’s very likely each group will have their own distinct ‘journey’ or ‘path’ at the event and this should be highlighted and personalized in your marketing pieces. How does each group talk? What are their concerns? What do they respond to? What makes their eyes light up? What do they read? Be prepared to walk a mile in their shoes. By doing so you’ll be able to communicate most effectively. Don’t leave it up to your copywriter to figure it all out.

Keep it Conversational

Forget the grand, overblown statements about what your event is or is not. Your marketing message should avoid looking like and sounding like a motivational poster. The vast majority of conference attendees are the foot-soldiers of their industry—these are the folks who do the work and who expect to return to the office with practical knowledge that they can then apply to their day-to-day responsibilities. Therefore, a good starting point when crafting your marketing message is to think about what you can convey about your event that will allow your target to understand and believe that your conference will provide the tools to do a better job. Nobody in your target audience is looking to conquer the world (well, maybe some are), but rather to be effective at what they do. And they are relying on you to help them! So, talk to them in terms that they can relate to. Talk to them about improvements that they’ll see in their day-to-day work life as a result of attending your event.

Avoid Fear Mongering

In an economy such as this, people have enough to worry about. Planting your message in a fear (and/or greed) framework does not help you gain traction over the long-term. It might elicit a motivating, short-term, quickening-of-the-pulse reaction, but event marketers should be in the business of developing long-term relationships. People respond better to the perceived benefits of attending an event over the ‘what ifs’ of not attending. Stay positive. Stay benefits-driven. That said, there are times when your target audience needs to be jolted into taking the invitation to attend your event seriously. For example, there are dire consequences to not staying informed about issues related to regulation and compliance or keeping customer information secure against the threat of a security breach. If your event is offering critical need to know information, then, by all means, make your target audience pay attention. However, keep your message grounded in rational, business-based facts and avoid emotional scare tactics.

Champion What Often Goes Unnoticed

We cannot deny the realities of a faltering global economy and the accompanying layoffs, downsizing and the pervasive sense of hunkering down. However, no company stops and waits for it all to blow over. As event marketers, we have the opportunity to champion the continuing march towards greater innovation, increased efficiencies and an expansion of market share and profit, even in periods of economic contraction. In fact, the smart companies are the ones that see the opportunities among the challenges. Let your message be honest about the realities, but showcase the solutions that your event offers to those in pursuit of innovation, efficiency and market share.

A Cautionary Note on Brand Management

Some attrition is to be expected in a faltering economy—it’s human nature. In the recession, companies tend to err on the side of caution and scale back on event participation. While you might be tempted to offer deeply discounted registration fees in order to stimulate registration, don’t compromise your event’s brand. Deep discounts can only diminish the perceived value of your event. If you truly believe that what you are offering will benefit attendees, be willing to stand behind your price point. There are other ways to financially incent attendees—airline and hotel partnerships, for example—while maintaining the integrity of your brand. And yet, if there are portions of your target audience that cannot attend, don’t lose them. Put the content on your event website after the event closes for a fee. However, price it wisely. You don’t want to diminish the experience and the value of those who were onsite and were learning first hand.

Fivenson Studios is based in Ann Arbor, Michigan, our graphic design team specializes in logo and web page design, as well as marketing campaigns for social and print media. From flyers and brochures to targeted landing pages, we aim to bring your company into the spotlight and reach a greater range of potential customers.

Fivenson Studios: Michigan's #1 Graphic Design, Web Design, & Digital Advertising Agency 

Let's Get Social | http://fivensonstudios.com | (734) 224-9696 | Info@FivensonStudios.Com

How To Start Your Own Blog

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Blogging is a great way to reach your audience, share your thoughts, and even help you with your Internet marketing. I’ve been blogging for nearly 3 years and continue to enjoy the benefits of not only communicating with an audience but engaging in meaningful dialog. Starting a blog is easy to do and pays huge dividends.

There are a number of free services available that offer free blog services. Sites like Medium, Blogger, and WordPress only require a brief registration and set up. Once you determine a theme for your blog and a template, you’re ready to begin posting. Posts are entries you make on your blog that is published instantly.

Some bloggers post comments to their blog each and every day, others once a week. Regardless of how frequently you post to your blog, content can be focused on a specific theme or random topics. The most popular blogs focus on a specific niche and provide valuable information, content, and commentary that encourage interaction with blog followers.

Sign up for a blog service. Begin development of your blog by signing up for Blogger or WordPress. Once you have an account, you can quickly set up your blog. Consider the goal of your blog and what type of commitment you are willing to make. Start small and be consistent.

Monetize Your Blog

Determine how you will monetize your blog. If you want to use your blog to generate revenue, there are a few techniques you can apply depending on which platform you’re using. One of the most popular methods of monetizing your blog is with the help of Google Adsense. This is a popular option and very easy to add to your blog. Not only does it generate a small amount of revenue for you on a weekly basis, but it also provides relevant links based on your posts.

Another great way to monetize your blog is through paid links. The concept of offering paid links is pretty straight forward. You create a section of you blog that lists recommended sites. In this list, you only place links that people have paid you to post. There are some tools you can use to automate this process. I simply add a link to a post that says, “How to post your link” with directions and a pass through to a Paypal page. You can set up a single time payment or subscription, allowing would-be advertisers the opportunity to purchase a link on your blog monthly or for a longer period of time.

Many individuals are monetizing their blogs by using pay per post or another blogging network. Essentially, advertisers search for bloggers who are willing to write a post to promote their product and services or brand. You can sign up for one of these networks quite easily and be contacted when advertisers feel that your blog would be ideal for distributing a message. You write a blog post and get paid for doing so.

One thing to keep in mind is that the success of you blog is based on a number of factors. I believe that having a targeted blog that offers original content is ideal. You will build a large following. This is essential because most of the monetization methods are based on having enough traffic to make your blog appealing to advertisers as well as blog readers.

Fivenson Studios is based in Ann Arbor, Michigan, our graphic design team specializes in logo and web page design, as well as marketing campaigns for social and print media. From flyers and brochures to targeted landing pages, we aim to bring your company into the spotlight and reach a greater range of potential customers.

Fivenson Studios: Michigan's #1 Graphic Design, Web Design, & Digital Advertising Agency 

Let's Get Social | http://fivensonstudios.com | (734) 224-9696 | Info@FivensonStudios.Com

Website Design Tips

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Ah, a website--the greatest marketing tool of the 21st century! Some small business owners believe all they need is a website. It doesn't really matter what the colors look like and if it's easy to navigate. It should be enough just to have a website that displays your product, right?

Not necessarily. Research shows that a potential customer will come to your website up to seven times before they actually buy your product. Colors and navigation in this situation do matter. The tips below show how important website design really is.

Effective Website Design Tips to Improve Your Online Sales

The first thing to keep in mind is to have a fast loading website. The next is to steer your customers to exactly what they are looking for. Do not place a bunch of useless links or clutter your site with unnecessary text. Give your visitor the needed information to make an educated decision to purchase your product and/or service. You also need to offer an opt-in email to capture names and emails of your visitors. This enables you to follow up numerous times and get them to return at a future date to place their order. This is the cheapest and yet the most effective way to advertise!

Tips to Make Your Website Sell

I've seen some pretty awful websites. Color combinations that made the text impossible to read; navigation buttons that change from page to page; pages that start talking or play music as soon as you open them (with no way to adjust the volume or turn it off!); and pages crammed full of tiny text (and ads) in wall-to-wall boxes -- these are among my pet peeves!

1. If you are selling a product, your page should do just that...and ONLY that. Don't fill up your page with links that take visitors away from the one action you want them to take: to buy your product.

2. For non-sales pages on your site, keep your navigation simple and consistent, and use white space liberally. You don't need to fill every available spot with an ad or link!

Website design comes in many shapes, colors, and forms. You should plan your type of design according to the website, theme, and outcome you wish to achieve from your visitors. Some sites easy navigation is most important, in others the overall look.

Get Inside the Head and Heart of Your Visitors

The best website designs get inside the head and heart of the ideal visitor. Work with your website design company to create a profile of your perfect customer. Describe who that person is - their gender, education, socio-economic level, interests, problems, etc. Once you capture the essence of this person, you will gain a sense of what they want and how you can engage them in your message. Pictures and testimonials that show benefits received through your products and/or services are likely to be particularly effective. This is where a video marketing can be extremely advantageous.

Website design is important in attracting and keeping potential customers. The above information has defined how to format your website for success. By following these tips, your website will be able to increase profits in your business and provide you with success in your field.

Fivenson Studios is based in Ann Arbor, Michigan, our graphic design team specializes in logo and web page design, as well as marketing campaigns for social and print media. From flyers and brochures to targeted landing pages, we aim to bring your company into the spotlight and reach a greater range of potential customers.

Fivenson Studios: Michigan's #1 Graphic Design, Web Design, & Digital Advertising Agency 

Let's Get Social | http://fivensonstudios.com | (734) 224-9696 | Info@FivensonStudios.Com

Designing a Customer-Focused Website

If you prefer to listen to this article please click the link Designing a Customer-Focused Website

You’re at a dinner reception. The stranger next to you strikes up a conversation.

It only takes a few minutes before you realize: “This guy’s completely self-absorbed.” No matter how hard you try, every topic leads back to him. Soon, you find yourself inching away.

Guess what? You can find the same thing on the web. Sites that are egocentric. More interested in talking about themselves than solving customer problems. However, unlike the dinner reception situation, your escape from a self-absorbed website is quick and painless.

(Although there are offenders across the board, the biggest culprits seem to be business-to-business companies and small- to mid-sized firms.)

To heck with product benefits or helping prospects and customers solve their problems – the narcissistic website dwells on the company’s spectacularly engineered offerings, their superior manufacturing techniques, the brilliance of their people, the company’s offices. Is there a place for bragging? Sure, but it’s secondary to the customer’s issues. Too many websites forget this.

When you consider that the average visitor has an attention span measured in seconds and that he scans the web instead of reading every word, a narcissistic website has the same effect as a narcissistic tablemate: it turns people off.

In contrast, an intelligent website doesn’t leave a visitor stranded, searching for the customer benefits of the company’s products or services. It:

  • Provides clear statements that are customer benefit oriented
  • Supports its claims (often using customer and third party support)
  • Proactively addresses potential objections
  • Ushers the visitor into a dialogue

While prospects and customers care a lot about the companies they deal with, they care first and foremost about their own needs.

The underlying concept is simple and an underlying marketing communications truth. The most effective marketing communications put your customers and prospects first, not your company. By focusing on customer and prospect needs, you are more likely to fulfill your company's needs.

As obvious as this statement would appear, it is similarly obvious that many marketers don't really follow it.

A Quick Checkup to Find if Your Company Website is a Narcissist

Pretend you are a customer visiting your company's website for the first time. Write down five key concerns you have related to purchasing these kinds of products or services or choosing a company that you feel (or marketing research indicates) reflects the key concerns of your target market when researching companies like yours. Spend up to one minute at your website. Close the browser. How many of your five key concerns were addressed? How well did they address your concerns? A brief amount of copy addressing a key concern and a link to more detail is fine; no mention of these concerns is not.

Did the web page copy get to the heart of your concern or was it focused on itself instead of the prospect's needs? Use what you have learned to further test your website in front of real prospects and customers. Find out their most important problems they are hoping your website will help them answer and re-design your website around helping them.

It’s your choice: propaganda that only ends up stroking your company's ego or profits.

Fivenson Studios is based in Ann Arbor, Michigan, our graphic design team specializes in logo and web page design, as well as marketing campaigns for social and print media. From flyers and brochures to targeted landing pages, we aim to bring your company into the spotlight and reach a greater range of potential customers.

Fivenson Studios: Michigan's #1 Graphic Design, Web Design, & Digital Advertising Agency 

Let's Get Social | http://fivensonstudios.com | (734) 224-9696 | Info@FivensonStudios.Com

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Design must reflect the practical and aesthetic in business but above all... good design must primarily serve people. Let's start serving you.

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Lets get social. We would love to meet you! We Are Currently Open Monday-Sunday 8am-11pm Christopher@FivensonStudios.Com

Name: Christopher
Phone: (734) 224-9696
Address: 1214 S. University Ave Unit 4075 Ann Arbor, MI 48104

734-224-9696