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Lead-Generation-PictureBusinesses which don’t have any leads at all may as well close their doors. In effect, if you have no method to generate business leads, you might as well not exist at all. The problem is that many companies don’t know how to generate leads. They rely on the word of mouth advertising that is somewhat effective, but is not effective enough to carry them through economic downturns and is certainly not going to expand their business.

What are the Best Lead Generation Strategies for New Business Strategies?

Every business has a wide range of lead generation and marketing strategies available to them. One of the biggest mistakes that the new or small company makes is to rely solely on social media and free methods of advertising. These methods are not actually free in that they take up the time of you or your employees. Social media is of course important but it is one lead generation strategy that is not always reliable.Time spent here is costly in that it may not net you the return that you need.

Hire a Professional.

Hit and miss at best, social media can bring you a few leads, but businesses today require a more full featured and more dependable method of generating leads. More reliable and more cost effective is the use of a marketing company which can offer you leads on a regular basis.

Lead generation sites that can be used to give you the business that you need on a regular basis are one thing that a professional marketing and lead generation company can offer you.

Lead Generation Strategies.

Full print materials, PDFs that are available on your site and others for the prospective customer to print out and review are other strategies that will generate leads for your business. Small micro sites and guest posting, networking on a full scale will give you the lead generation and the new customers that you need to grow.

Isn’t DIY Marketing Cheaper?

While some diy methodology is useful and desirable, don’t make the mistake that many small businesses make today. Saving money is laudable in any business, but if that penny saving strategy isn’t providing you with the means to expand and to grow, isn’t offering you the leads that you need, it’s time to find a new strategy that includes professionals with a well laid out plan to expand your small business.

 

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Search Engine Optimization is one of the ever changing industries in marketing. The techniques and tactics change regularly as Google, Yahoo and Bing try to make searches more relevant and return better results. You are at their mercy.

SEO JargonSearch Engine Optimization in South Florida is a competitive market. We recently had someone call ask what we would do for Search Engine Optimization services. We spelled out our services and explained what we do in layman’s terms to attain the results they were looking for. They called us back a few days later asking explain services outlined by another South Florida SEO Company in terms they could understand.

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is a technical industry with technical terms. In our office we are just a bunch of caffeinated geeks who love to rank on the internet. Here are some simple translations to make a bit more sense of the SEO lingo, jargon and fluff some proposals contain:

Anchor Text – AHOY! As fun as this SEO term sounds, it has nothing to do with sailing. Anchor text is the actual text of a link to a web page. Search engines use anchor text to understand what the destination page is about.

CSS – One thing the internet is not lacking is acronyms. Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) is the part of your code that defines how different elements look on your site. The old school way of coding websites was to stick everything in a table, now we are designing in style.

The Fold – Since when did websites start folding? The fold is a print term that some carry over to the web world. It’s the point where your website gets cut off by a user’s monitor or browser window. A well-built site will have the important information and call to action points that users look for “above the fold” since that is the part people see first.

Javascript – We love this one because it reminds our team of coffee junkies. Search engines don’t really like this because they have difficulty reading the code that is inside the Javascript. Website Admins use it to apply various effects or changes to the content of the website as users continue to browse the website.

SERP – OH look another acronym! Search Engine Ranking Page (SERP) is the first page that would come up on Google after you type in your search.

Spider – We strongly believe that the person who came up with this computer program that browses the internet and collects information about websites was really into the Matrix. Why else would you name something after a creepy 8 legged BUG!

SEOJargon2There is a very different language in the marketing world that sounds like rocket science to some. I think that some Search Engine Optimization companies try to make it confusing and sound like rocket science on purpose. What we actually do is harder; it involves people with emotions, swayed by advertising, driven by buying habits and marketing trends. Mix all that up, and it’s easy to see why I think Search Engine Optimization is more difficult than rocket science.

The bottom line of current Search Engine Optimization is relevant real content that people want to read. Good, honest, frequent content that is helping others understand, learn or explain how to do something. Search Engines are so smart that they can spot duplicate content, fluffy keyword-stuffed paragraphs, too technical or irrelevant articles. Keep it real, relevant and authentic and you will start to see your content get read and draw in traffic to your website.

If you have questions trying to understand what Search Engine Optimization or SEO is, don’t feel bad. Once you start to get a grasp of it, the rules will change again!

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BMGcreative is company that is one part search engine marketing and one part branding. That mix makes us a bunch of creative analytical geeks who drink a lot of coffee.

It’s great to have your website rank on the top of the search engines but if your brand is not professional and memorable then you will be quickly forgotten. They will simply click and then you’re gone.

If your logo or web design is not memorable, not professional and doesn’t instill confidence your potential customer clicking from your top ranking page on search engines will just bounce away.

Once they’ve found your page, what keeps you fresh in the minds of your prospective customers? When your business branding has a professional edge and creativity your perspective customers will remember you and seek you out for business.

Creating a design that is uniquely your own brand takes some time and usually requires the input of custom logo design specialists who can work with you to determine how you want to portray your business.

Each facet of your company is symbolic to you. Our graphic designers in Fort Lauderdale can help you to nail down the perfect design that will showcase your company and help your name stand out.

When you make a long lasting impression on someone, it is usually because of your branding. Custom logos designed by one of our expert graphic designers in Fort Lauderdale verses an amateur designer will make a statement about who you are and what you have to offer. Your vision and your mission will be captured in a clever logo design that can brand your company and tell the world what you’ve been doing.

Our staff can guide you through the logo creation process to help you to arrive at a look that you can love and get excited about. Our logo design process has been refined for over 20 years and has become an art form.

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small business website designEvery small business needs professional website designed by a professional. That’s a sweeping statement, but it’s also a true statement. Small business website design is not any different from big business web design. The smaller business today, in order to compete on a level playing field needs to look as though they are capable, established, professional and credible–as most of them are–with the bigger businesses. A larger business has more resources, more staff and more money to spend. They can afford to market their services to a scope that evades small business website design and marketing.

Small business website design requires the same elements that makes the big business websites great but on a budget.

Important elements of a small business website design that are  key:

  • Easily to navigate
  • Easy to search and find what you want
  • Enlightening or informative by the use of quality, unique creative content
  • Eye catching and unique–not one of many cookie cutter type sites
  • Instill trust with a look and feel that matches the brand
  • Ability to rank well on search engines to get noticed
  • Easy to update with internal staff
  • Meets the unique small business website needs

Small business website design and marketing is unique in that it needs to provide the smaller business the appearance and appeal of a larger site while still staying honest and ethical about who and what the small business is. This can usually be undertaken effectively by the use of creative content and custom website design by a consulting a professional.

Sometimes small businesses try to do web design on their own to save a few dollars but is easily lost in return on investment. I always say let the professionals do what they do best. I would never redo my electrical breaker box in my house; I leave that to my electrician. Just like he leaves me to do his small business website design and marketing. We both are better off and it’s a lot safer.

Small Business Website Design for Your Business

If you’re a small business owner today, your website is quite like your first line of marketing. It is a pivotal component in your brand recognition and your marketing to all of your customers. It may be where you gain most of your business and most of your visibility. Or, conversely, it may not be any of those things, in which case your website isn’t working as hard for you as it should be.

The key may well be in the design that you’re using, the inability to search quickly or the way in which the customer perceives you based on the design that you’re using.

The average website owner balks at the costs that may be involved in a custom website design. An honest web design agency will tell you that their design costs are higher than the costs that might be incurred for a cookie cutter template. The reasons for that difference is that custom website design for the small business can afford you a vast array of benefits not given you by the off-the-rack style website design.

If your small business website is using a design that is seen hundreds if not thousands of places online, your website falls to the ranks of the very small business in the minds of your prospective customers. If your design is fresh and unique and easy to navigate, it is, in the same minds, promoted to the ranking of the capable and efficient larger business without their even reviewing or reading your content.

Custom small business website design provides a unique look and feel that will show the world what you’re all about and what differentiates you from the others. It offers you the same look and feel that the larger businesses have and helps to reinforce your long history. Using testimonials from your customers in combination with a custom website design can provide you with the look and feel of being just a little larger than your competition and give you and your company a decided edge.

Get the look and feel that your company needs to grow online; a professional website that shows off who you are and what you can do.

Never Look Small!

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Panda-Penguin-HummingbirdGoogle seems to have an identity crisis these days, constantly changing the requirements they have for websites they list. Panda, Penguin and Hummingbird have so many different things you need to take into account, it can be maddening. But before you hire a Fort Lauderdale SEO marketing firm to help you to get your website in order, it can help to sit down and understand the differences among these changes.

The newest of the three Google changes is Hummingbird. This is a search algorithm that helps Google to better categorize pages. It is designed to bring the high quality pages with relevant content to the top of search engine results while leaving rubbish at the bottom of the stack. To rank high with Hummingbird, you need to focus on quality and make sure when a person searches a term and clicks on a link to your website, they are receiving quite a bit of information.

Unless you work for a marketing firm, you are probably left thinking that was what Panda and Penguin already did. However, that isn’t exactly the case. For example, Penguin was more directed to manipulative links and how they were handled, rather than making a change to the general algorithm the company used. Panda in turn changed the rank associated with low quality websites and those light on information for a particular niche.

Hummingbird has also helped transform the Google search engine into a conversational search engine that focused more on how people speak and less on defined keywords. That means the search engine would look beyond hard keywords and explore phrases to give internet users better results for their searches.

However, there are different requirements and elements you need to take into account to maximize the impact you have online. While some business owners understand Google and how the changes directly affect their results, others are finding that using the services of providers like Fort Lauderdale SEO companies is an effective choice as they can deliver original, high quality website content that won’t negatively be impacted in Google.

Of course, the entire process is one that continues to evolve and expand over time. Penguin, for example, is at 2.1 right now and is penalizing websites that ignore the guidelines and use fraudulent tactics to boost their ranking. Panda is at version 4.0 right now and has helped make vast improvements to search engine results with continuous improvements that are less noticeable than when it was first released.

So what are the best practices to help you to avoid problems with Panda, Penguin and Hummingbird?

  • Avoid duplicate content at all costs.
  • Ensure there is value to each post you place on your website.
  • Don’t pay for backlinks or use black hat exchange systems.
  • Increase the value of all low-quality content.
  • Improve the grammar, spelling and cohesiveness of the content on your website.
  • Make certain every post answers the questions internet users have based on a topic when they perform a Google search.
  • Avoid excessive advertising on your website, especially in text links.
  • Verify that keywords are an appropriate match for the website and not designed to deceive an audience.

If you have been affected by any of these changes in Google, don’t fret. A professional Fort Lauderdale SEO company can review your website and show you some of the changes you can make. With a little effort, the damage can be reversed so you can recover from the hit and give users a better version full of quality information they can count on.

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Responsive Web DesignYour web design and development directly affects the success of your online business. Any company that isn’t utilizing responsive web design will find their online presence struggle through 2014 and may not make it to 2015. This is why it is important to hire a professional South Florida web design company to assist you through the process.

If you are scratching your head at the term responsive web design, you aren’t alone. This website is laid out so it adjusts to fit the viewing area it is displayed in. Since more people are using tablets, smartphones and computers to access the internet, you can’t use a single website to cater to all your potential visitors. The responsive web design will instead adjust the displayed page so it works perfectly for the desired website.

Fluid grids will be an essential part of the process because they are part of the essential framework to the responsive design. Since screen resolutions are changing all the time, you can’t simply target a couple and call it good. Fluid grids take the traditional liquid layout and improve on the idea. Developers aren’t designing the pages based on percentage values or pixels, but instead it is based on proportions. This allows the screen elements to work on a giant screen or on a handheld device.

For this to work, you need to take the proportions of the different page elements and divide the element by the overall context. Using an image editor tends to be the best choice since you can create a high fidelity variation of images. In this case, having 960 pixels across would be your container. Using that, you can create a layout that works. The formula is target / context = size results. So for a 300 pixel resizing, you would divide 300 / 960 = 31.25% for the necessary proportions. It is important to understand that not all values will be neat. With the varying images, never round up. Instead, take it out as many decimal points as possible to give the best appearance possible.

You will find that the fluid grids will be among the most important parts of your overall responsive design. However, in the case of narrow browsers, options like media queries can help. Using media queries to work in the most common pixel dimensions such as 320 pixels, 480 pixels, 600 pixels, 768 pixels and so on will help you to achieve the results you want.

While the process might sound like an expensive and time-consuming one, a South Florida web design company like BMGcreative can do this for you in a short period of time and well within your budget. Assuming your original design is setup to convert easily, as there may be some exceptions where new web design and development might be necessary to work across multiple platforms.

Considering that in 2014, the bulk of your traffic will come from a portable device, you need to be ready with a mobile friendly layout. People on the go utilize websites to locate local businesses and comparatively shop with online vendors. That means slow load times and difficult to read pages have a negative impact on your business. Avoid becoming a statistic of online evolution and make sure you work with a South Florida web design company to make sure your site is responsive.

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Social Media for Business to Consumer Marketing

Most internet users today use social media networks, meaning that using social media for business purposes is an essential part of marketing today. A large percentage of businesses note that social media marketing offers great results, and if you’re going to compete with other businesses on the web, you’ll need to begin using social media to your advantage. Here is a look at the top social media sites, as well as how you can use them for effective business to consumer marketing.

Facebook

Currently, Facebook has the largest amount of users when it comes to social media websites. In fact, studies show that 93% of adults who use the web have a Facebook account. With millions of users on Facebook, you can’t afford to overlook this social media site. To get your social media marketing campaign started, you’ll need to create a page for your business. Once your page is created, you can begin building your Facebook presence. Make sure you create a visually appealing page that will encourage people to “like” your business page. To enjoy the best results, make sure that you use friendly posts, focus on photos and learn the best times to post.

Twitter

Twitter continues to see explosive growth and many businesses already have Twitter accounts. If you plan to usesocial media for business purposes, make sure that you consider this microblogging website. It allows you to communicate in short posts called “tweets.” For an effective Twitter marketing campaign, be sure to complete the entire profile, branding it for your company. Learn to use hashtags when posting on Twitter, since studies show that tweets that have a hashtag or two see higher levels of engagement. Make sure you take time to build a list of followers so more people see your messages. Just avoid constantly posting sales pitches – make your tweets useful and interesting for the best results.

Instagram

Instagram is all about photos and videos and over 75 million people use Instagram each day. This casual social media site allows you to add pictures and videos that help you to build brand awareness while engaging your audience. When using Instagram, make sure that you choose videos and pictures that represent your company well, ensuring that you keep a unique voice for your company. Try to focus on posting content that your fan base wants to see.

Pinterest

Many businesses don’t realize that Pinterest is an important site that should be included in any social media marketing campaign. When using social media for business, be sure to keep Pinterest in mind. It has already seen explosive growth and continues to grow. Studies show that Pinterest users are the social media users that spend the most money, so Pinterest offers an excellent marketing opportunity. As you pin videos and photos, be sure to include keywords in all your pins and include a link in your pin as well. Ensure that your profile is filled out so your profile doesn’t appear like spam. It’s also possible to monitor the traffic that comes to your site from Pinterest, which can allow you to modify and hone your social media marketing campaign for the best results.

Google+

Although Google+ is not as popular as Facebook, it is growing and has more than 300 million users. The “Circles” feature offered by Google+ lets you easily control your presence on this social media sites, since you can put followers/friends into different circles. This makes it easy to share posts with only a certain group of people so you can personalize posts to certain groups of followers.

Most businesses only think of Twitter and Facebook when considering social media for business marketing campaigns. Make sure you learn more about the social media sites available and find the ones that fit well with the products or services your business has to offer.

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Social Media for Business

Since studies show that 69% of business to business buyers are using social networks for business development and networking, social media for business cannot be ignored. B2B businesses need to ensure they are involved in social networks and communities where customers are already engaging. With social media marketing, it is possible to share knowledge, engage prospects, build brand recognition and loyalty and increase sales. If you’re new to social media, here are a few helpful tips to remember as you begin using social media for business to business marketing.

The Value of a Facebook “Like”

Facebook, currently the largest social media site, brings in millions of people each day. Since Facebook currently dominates in social media, using Facebook as a party of your social media marketing campaign is essential. With a quality Facebook page, you can create conversations with business buyers via status updates, images, videos and more. One of the ways businesses can engage with other businesses is to create content that encourages a “like.” Studies show that Facebook “likes” vary in value, but for many companies, a “like” results in higher profits. One study done on Best Buy showed that someone liking the brand not only spend more than $200 more money each year than people who didn’t like the brand, but those individuals were more likely to recommend the brand to other people as well.

Twitter – How and When to Use It

Business today use Twitter for many reasons, including for customer service, brand recognition and marketing. Business users on Twitter want new information, products, ideas and opportunities. Twitter is all about interacting with other people or businesses, making it a valuable tool for B2B businesses. For the best Twitter results, start following people that are involved in your field, connect with relevant users and use the people you follow and those following you to give your business credibility. Make sure you offer more than information on products, discounts and sales. Include engaging tweets, such as pictures and videos, and retweet positive tweets from happy customers.

Don’t Forget YouTube

When companies engage in social media for business to business marketing, they often forget about YouTube – a big mistake! YouTube happens to be the 2nd largest search engine and the main social media site for video content. Video content is a powerful marketing tool and statistics show that a huge percentage of internet users watch videos online. YouTube has millions of users that visit regularly, so if you don’t use YouTube, you’re missing out on a lot of marketing potential. Create helpful, how-to style videos and add them to the appropriate categories on YouTube. You can even set up a brand channel for your company.

Using LinkedIn for Marketing

Since LinkedIn is a social media site for professionals, it’s an excellent channel to use for social media marketing. LinkedIn offers LinkedIn Groups, an excellent venue that allows you to create dialog with other businesses involved in similar industries. Current business clients have the ability to provide your business with recommendations on your company profile, which increases credibility for your business. LinkedIn also has a “Questions” area, which businesses can browse, offering answers to gain the trust of other users.

Google+ Continues to Grow

Google+ continues to grow, setting itself up as a competitor to Facebook. It offers similar features to Facebook, but offers some unique features as well. Not only can you upload links, photos, videos and more, but you can use the Google Hangout Feature to host how-to or informational sessions. Since you can create Google+ circles, it is possible to create unique circles where you can share special offers and discounts.

Social media for business to business marketing offers a unique way for businesses to build their brand and engage with their business customers. Keep these important tips in mind to maximize the benefits social media has to offer.

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internet marketing miamiYou’ve heard it said that you should be using local website designers. It all sounds like a lot of hype doesn’t it? Made up by local website designers who want your business. True enough, we’d love to have your business, but that doesn’t mean we made it all up. In fact, local companies can create something that local customers like best. An internet marketing company in Miami knows how to marketing in South Florida. They know your business nearly as well as you do.

Your business– particularly if it is a brick and mortar business, is in the immediate area. The people to whom you most want to relate are the local people. That means that you need someone to design your graphics, to create your pages and to implement your website who understand and work in your local market. People are–go figure–local, are the ones who are best qualified to know that market and to make sure that your products and your services are going to fit into it. They can ascertain if the kind of content that you want is going to mesh with the local market place. The colors, the navigation and the on page SEO need to be a good fit for the people to whom you are trying to sell.

Much as your website design needs to be appealing to the people that you’re going to be selling products too, so too does your content and your marketing need to appeal to the local arena. If your website designer hails from Alaska and designs a site for you that is reminiscent of ice and snow, how well is that going to sell your paddleboards? Floridians know what Florida wants. Miami website designers know internet marketing in Miami market. We can provide you with the kind of look and feel that your local customers are looking for.

What Makes Miami Unique?

The answer to that is–just about everything. Miami is sunshine and heat and passion. The area is a hotbed of diversity. The culture the people and the travel, the tourism component–all of these affect the way in which we create our sites, the way that we sell and the people to whom we sell. Everything about Miami is unique to itself and it has a big effect on our business and our marketing methods.

That means that you need a local marketer who knows your market and your people and your business. It makes the marketing tactics that are going to be used to get your products and services out to the people who want to see them are going to be on time and on target.

When you’re looking for the right internet marketing in Miami methods, Miami to Manhattan, local marketers are going to be your best option for products that you’re marketing locally. Internet marketing changes from place to place and from person to person. Getting it right means using an company that knows internet marketing in Miami. They know what your customers are looking for–and gives it to them.

When you’re looking for a local Miami marketing company, choose wisely. Look over the prospects and choose those who have well established personnel who are native to your area in order to get the people who understand your market best.Choose BMGcreative for the kind of marketing that has local appeal.

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Ways to Evaluate Your Web Agency

Since your web agency is going to be responsible for your long term success, it is critical to select and agency that provides exceptional results. To be certain you get real results to propel your website to the next level, you need to keep some important things in mind. Since they will handle everything from your SEO to consulting with you, you can’t risk your reputation with subpar results.

When you look at the web agency, it is important they don’t utilize the same formula for everyone they work with. Every company online has their own unique situation and their needs are based on their particular situation. The web agency should take the time to create a comprehensive strategy to provide actual value to your company rather than doing cookie cutter tactics that may only have a minimal impact.

Another critical area look for in your web agency should be key performance indicators, which help to better maintain the success and work towards the goals you set. Working closely with you, they should identify what metrics will be used to help determine the amount of success you have and on a routine basis, they should provide you with a report to give you an assessment of improvement and let you know the techniques that helped to achieve these results.

You should take a moment to also review their website. Pay attention to their top keywords and see where they rank and the layout of their page. If you notice they are struggling and not actually getting the results they have promised you, it might be a good idea to proceed with caution. After all, these are the people you would be entrusting with your own success.

You should even challenge the information they are providing you. Before you sign with the company, ask for proven results and websites they have done business with. Many shady companies will claim to have thousands of results only to have a mediocre track record and by the time you have figured it out, it may have already cost you thousands.

Find out what tools they will be using for your campaign. Most companies utilize some types of tools that will allow them to better optimize your website, track results and to better automate things. While it is fine if they are using tools, it is a good idea to see what they will be using, especially if they plan to install anything on your website. You don’t want any surprises later on.

Above all, it pays to trust your instincts. Watch for areas of concern, such as misspelled words and broken links. If something doesn’t add up, ask them to clarify it or point out the concern. If they sidestep it or become aggressive, just walk away from the situation and find a different company.

Ultimately, your online success is up to you. Make sure you take the time to evaluate any web agency you plan on using, keeping the above tips in mind. That way, you have a better chance of being successful when dealing with them and you should then run into fewer concerns when transforming your website.

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