Monthly Archives: October 2012

2 Free Tools To Measure Online Marketing Performance

The best thing about online marketing for me is that everything is measurable.  And I mean everything.  By using some basic tools we can see in our own marketing where a Froggo client first came into contact with one of our marketing messages, see what they did as an action, right through to either being face-to-face with them or them purchasing one of our products online.

But… when it comes to online performance it can be tricky to get your head around where to start.  What exactly should you be measuring?  Here are three of our favourite tools to use – two of them are free!

Google Analytics

A must have tool for any website.  You’ll be amazed at just how much data Google Analytics will show you about your website.

Free-Tools-To-Measure-Online-Marketing-Performance-2

See how many visits you’re getting each month.  Track where they’re coming from.  See which content is most popular.  Even features like visitor flow visualisation, which shows you the path users take through your website, are now available and it’s all free!

If you haven’t done already, get over to Google Analytics now, set up your account in minutes (even less if you already have a Google account) and get the tracking code onto your website.

Google Webmaster Tool

This tool is again another free tool courtesy of Google.  It’s quick to set up and gives you huge insight into how Google is viewing your website – this is important especially if you have broken links etc.

Free-Tools-To-Measure-Online-Marketing-Performance-3 

The Google Webmaster Tool will allow you to quickly see and fix any problems like 404 errors on your website.  It allows you to examine your inbound links, which is a really good way to measure the performance of your SEO campaigns.  I’d even go as far to say that it’s the best tool for measuring inbound links as it’s Google reporting back to you on which links they have indexed instead of relying on what some third party tool is telling you they have found.

Another great use of the Google Webmaster Tool is the search query analysis feature.Free-Tools-To-Measure-Online-Marketing-Performance  

This allows you to examine which keywords are driving you the most traffic in the search engines.  You can monitor things like impressions to clicks which of course gives you your average CTR for each search query.  This free tool really does hold quite a lot of power.  When you open your account, make sure you link it to your Google Analytics account so that you can pull data from each application.

Is Your Website Missing UPS and Failing Because Of It?

The number of companies that come to Froggo for a website analysis report actually amazes me.  Well, it’s not the fact that they come to us wanting to find out why their website isn’t working (that’s normal!).  What amazes me is the high percentage of websites that are put under my nose that lack any thought in the design.  Almost as if the designer who’s created the monstrosity has never even considered UPS.

UPS is something that the Froggo web designers use in all of the custom builds we create for our clients. It stands for User.  Purpose.  Simple.

User Purpose Simple

User

The first thing any designer should consider when creating either a companies core website, or landing page is who the user is going to be.  Are they male or female? How old are they? Are they married?  Do they have children?  Are they employed or unemployed?

It’s a very simple question to ask, “Who does my website target”?  “Who is my ideal customer”.  If you have recently hired a web designer  make sure that in their web design brief, there is a section for customer profiling.

Purpose

An obvious one but missed on so many websites that I see.  I’m not kidding.  This question usually results in a blank face and silence.  “So, what do you want people to do when they land on your website?”

Maybe you want people to call your companies main office number, or put them straight through to your sales desk, or maybe you want their permission to give you some of their basic information so that you can continue to market to them once they leave your website.  A name and email address is usually best for this depending on your industry as you can automate a lot of the follow up using email marketing software like Mailchimp, Aweber, Contant Contact, or Office Auto Pilot.

Simple

Simple or simplicity.  Once you’re clear on who your user is and what you want them to do when they land on your website, you now need to make it simple for them to do that.  Don’t stuff your website full of ads or unnecessary content that detracts away from what you’re trying to achieve.  Instead, keep it simple.  Whatever you’ve decided the purpose of your website to be, there needs to be a call to action above the fold of the page that entices your website visitors into doing what it is that you want them to do.

So to recap, make sure you know who your ideal customer is by completing a customer profiler brief.  Be clear in your mind what it is that you want vistors to do when they land on your page.  Get them to take action with a clear Call To Action (CTA) that’s visible when they land.  And keep it SIMPLE.  Don’t over complicate the process.

Hopefully, this post has helped you to understand how you can make your website work much more efficiently for you.  If you’d like us to take a look at your website and give you a any pointers please contact our team and we’ll get you fixed in no time.

Questions, comments and feedback are welcome below.

3 Reasons To Use Wistia In Your Email Marketing Campaigns

Hello it’s James here and in this short video I’m going to be sharing some pretty cool stuff that we’ve been using with Wistia in our email marketing campaigns.

What is Wistia?

So firstly what is Wistia?  Well, in the words of Wistia, themselves: “Professional Video Hosting and Analytics for your Business”.  So basically instead of using something like YouTube to host your videos, you can use Wistia to have much more controls over things like video player options.  Things like colours, play buttons, you can even add clickable Call To Actions (CTAs) at the end of the video which can be either an image or text.  Of course, that’s great if the video’s purpose is to make the viewer do something once they finish watching.  I would hope that all of your videos do this!

So let’s take a look at some of the reaosns why we’ve been using Wistia in some of our recent email marketing campaigns:

1) Fast upload, Sexy Video Player, Easy To Use

One of the great things about using Wistia videos in an email marketing campaign is the fact that it’s just so easy to use.  At Froggo, we like to use a lot of video as our tests show that our conversions are generally much higher when we do.  So this means that sometimes we’ll use a sequence of videos in a campaign.

Now, before using Wistia, we would self host all of our videos and use a player like JW Player or Easy Video Player.  But the problem with doing this is that you have to convert videos to be web ready.  A process that depending on how powerful your computer is, can take hours of unnecessary time spent.  With Wistia, you just select your file, upload, add any custom settings you want, and embed.  Simple.

2) Powerful Heatmap Tracking

Powerful heatmap tracking makes Wistia what it is.  It’s a feature that most video hosting providers just dont have.  So what’s so good about it?  Well, on the first day of a new email campaign you’ll be driving traffic to a landing page where you’ll be wanting visitors to take some form of action whether it’s to call you, leave their email, or just download something.

Now, with your Wistia video embedded on the page, you can now track how people are watching your video:

  • Are they watching it all the way to the end?
  • When are they dropping off?
  • At what time in the video is that… Is it after a particular CTA?
The heatmaps give you all of this data.  It really is powerful data to have as it allows you to split test your videos and improve them on each new launch.  Of course this will work particularly well if you have a product or service that you run regular promotions for.

3) Email Tagging

If you thought the heatmap tracking and other analytics data was powerful, email tagging will excite you further.  So what’s email tagging?  Well, the data that we’ve already pulled from Wistia is pretty powerful on it’s own, but now imagine if you had a way of telling which subscribers from your email marketing list watched the video, how long for, when they dropped off, and what time in the video was that?

Not only that… how many times did that individual person watch the video, what day was it when they watched, what time specifically did they watch it?  Now imagine segmenting these people by these stats and adding them to some kind of lead scoring software like Office Autopilot, tailoring a custom follow up sequence for each, and then sending them down that particular marketing funnel.  You’re going to have yourself a pretty powerful marketing campaign.

Remember it’s all about the data.  Make sure you’re collecting as much of it as possible.  Ideally you want to be able track your sales from the very first marketing touch point right up to when they buy, and continue tracking through that buyers customer life cycle.

I hope you’ve enjoyed this video.  Any questions, comments or feedback are welcome below.  I’m James Downton, at Froggo Marketing.  I’ll catch up with you next week.

5 Design Techniques That Will Control Your Website Visitors Like Puppets

At Froggo, site landing pages are at the core of what we teach and implement for our clients.  Getting traffic to a website is easy but the skill comes in controlling vistors like a puppet master – sounds evil doesn’t it?!  BUT it’s not.  What I am referring to is knowing and understanding why someone likes one website design more than another but more importantly, what specifically on that website influences and guides them deeper into a given website.

If you have a website with poor conversions, I guarantee you that by reading on and 

implementing just some of the techniques below, your website will see a dramatic change in it’s success rate.  So let’s get stuck in…

1) People Scan Screens Based On Past Experience And Expectations

It’s an obvious one but it’s always the first thing that stands out for me when a business owner seeks help with their website conversion.  I see things like the logos positioned right, the navigation tucked away on a small vertical sidebar, some times some strange flash entrance!

People Scan Screens Based On Past Experience And Expectations

So where do people look on a web page?  Well it depends partially on what they are looking for, doing and expecting.  If a visitor speaks a language that is read from left to right like English, they tend to scan the screen from left to right – it’s just natural.  That said, people avoid the edges of pages.  We’ve been trained to know that logos and empty spaces don’t contain any important information for us, so we tend to look at the center of the screen.  An offline example of this could be a Word document.  The margins are large and over the years we’ve been trained where to look.

So, it’s important that you follow best practice web design which is based on making sure that information is presented to a site visitor in a way that they have previously experienced.  This way it’s easy for them… A question I like to ask myself is, “Could my Dad navigate this website”.  If the answer is No, we gotta change it up!

2) People See Cues That Tell Them What To Do With An Object

Login To My AccountWhen you’re thinking about your web site design you need to con

sider how things in the real world get people to take action.  For example, if we take a remote control.  There are clearly buttons to press, but what is it that tells our brains that these objects are for pushing in.  Is it what’s written on the button, is it the button shadows?  Both of these options can be simulated and tested online.  Split tests that we’ve carried out on buttons show an increase in click through rates when a shadow is applied.

These visual cues are so subtle that most site visitors won’t even be conscious of why they have clicked,  it’s the unconscious mind that we’re playing with here.

3) We Look Where The Face Looks

Look where the face looks

This is one of my favourites as it’s pretty much impossible not to fall for it!  Imagine being sat in a cafe with a friend.  You’re talking away to your friend and you can’t help but notice that your friends eyes keep wondering away to something that’s going on behind you.  What is it they’re looking at?! You can’t help it, you have to turn around and see!

Using this online is effective.  Perhaps you want to divert a visitors attention to a product on the page or some other type of Call To Action (CTA).  One thing to note though is that just because people are looking at something, it doesn’t mean they are paying attention.  It’s a choice you’ll have to make on your web site design.  Emotional connections are established by the eyes looking right at the site visitor, or you can create direct attention to something by having the eyes focus on something else on the page.

4) People Are More Motivated As They Get Closer To A Goal

people are motivated as they get closer to a goalOne of my favourite tools that we use at Froggo is Dropbox and they have a great example of using this particular technique.

Dropbox offers a cloud based storage/file sharing platform for you and anyone that you want to share with.  It’s free to join… until  you go past your 2GB limit, then they know that they’ve got you.  But the clever part is that they know the more features and functionalities you use within their software, the more likely you are to stay.

So, to play on this, when you sign up for a new account, they give you a task list of things they want you to do in order to hook you into their product.  It’s displayed in a list format and users get the satisfaction of crossing things off the list.  The secret here is that people focus on what’s left to do than what’s already been completed.  Very sneaky Dropbox… We like it!

5) People Are Motivated By Progress, Mastery, And Control

This is the element of “game”.  People  donate their time to things like the open source movement and… even things like Farmville! (don’t start me on Farmville).  BUT it works online really well to get people to do things on a web site.  Membership sites work well with this in particular.  A good example of this is Aweber.  They use a progress bar to let you know what percentage you have completed when setting up a new list.  Think about it.  If you didn’t know that percentage wasn’t quite 100% would you really make the effort to go back and write your first follow up message right there and then?

So if you want to increase your landing pages or core website conversions, or anywhere that people are finding you online, start to implement some of the techniques above and watch what happens.  Before you do though make sure you have Analytics running on your website.  At the very least you should be using Google Analytics.  I advise you to get up to speed on it fast and learn how to use their goal setting functionality.

Other paid tools that we use with our clients at Froggo you might consider using are, Visual Website Optimizer, ClickTale, and Wistia if you’re driving traffic to a video landing page.

That’s it for this blog.  I welcome any comments or questions you have… or maybe you just want to say ‘thanks’ for an amazing post ;)

A Warning About Google’s New Disavow Tool

What’s This All About Then?

Last Tuesday Google introduced a tool that enables website owners to disavow links to there website.

Disavow you say? Yes, the new tool allows you to login to your Google webmaster tools and completely deny responsibility for links that you specify that link back to your website.

If you’re a regular Google Webmaster Tools user the process of doing this is fairly straight forward.  However, the tool itself is definitely not to be messed with.  Think about it and ask yourself…

Why Would Google Create A Tool Like This?

If you thought the idea of SEO was to create backlinks to your website you’d be right.  So why would anybody want to undo all that hard work?  Matt Cutts explained in this video that the primary aim and focus of the tool is to help clean up any bad SEO that you might be being affected by.  Perhaps you hired a cheap SEO that went out and used spammy robots to create poor quality content and then blasted that content out to some dodgy link networks that are linking back to your website.  These are the type of links that Google are expecting you to want to clean up.

The other opinion is of course the opinion that I know a lot of SEO’s have already formed, which is that the big G might just be loosing the battle to Black Hat SEO.  We’ve all seen it.  As soon as Google shut down one loop hole, the Black Hatters find another way to manipulate the search results.  Has it gotten out of control?  So bad that Google don’t know which links are good and which are bad – they are relying on website owners to tell them which links they think are bad?

I’ll let you form your own opinion but either way, it’s very sneaky!

Does This Effect My Website?

Not if you’re a Froggo SEO client, and in most cases you probably won’t ever need to use this tool.  If however you chose not to hire a professional SEO company that knows what they are doing and instead you actually hired these guys…

A Warning About Googles New Disavow Tool

…you might want to check what sort of links are pointing to your website.

As always, questions and comments are welcome below.  Also if you’ve actually used the tool please let us know what affect (if any) it’s had on your SEO performance.

 

Build Your Marketing Campaigns Around Spending Behaviour

Video Transcription

So here’s a little bit of theory to mix in with some of the things that I’ve been saying.  If you want to end up with a finished transaction, you’ve got to be able to understand people’s spending behaviour.  And the cross-over between that is where you as a company deliver the promise to the customer that you made them.

You deliver the promise.  You get money.  Logical.

But how can you shape spending behaviour?  Well that’s when marketing comes in to play.  And what you need to do in your marketing is in your customer, you’be got to  create (for them) the expectation of the promise.  And the way that you can shape the marketing is by planning correctly how to do it.

And that is all about being able to anticipate the need of the people that you are marketing to.  Marketing planning is all about being able to anticipate, in advance, what you think your target market is going to think, feeel, and do.

5 Ways To Lose Business By Not Being On Twitter

Video Transcrition

As the title suggests, in this short video I want to get across to business owners how by not being on Twitter they are in fact leaving money on the table and missing out on new potential business opportunities.

So I’m going to get straight into it:

Reason number 5. (Yes I’m going to do this backwards)

Twitter is an extremely fast way to get the message out. How else can your business connect with thousands of targeted prospects who have all actively opted in to receive your messages for a cost of zero. It’s Free!

Reason number 4 – Stay in the loop.

People might be talking about you or your business already on Twitter. And if you’re not there, questions go unanswered, and opportunities to engage and connect are lost. It’s an amazing tool for not only monitoring your brand but also to check in and follow related topics to your industry so that you can keep your ear to the ground.

Reason Number 3 - Refine your brand. 

Last week Joel Lunenfeld, vice president of Twitter’s global brand strategy, revealed that a huge 88 percent of Twitter users follow at least one brand, and more than 50 percent of users follow six or more brands. At the time of making this video Twitter are at 140 million users – an audience your business probably doesn’t want to miss out on.

In at number 2 – Networking

The separation now between you and meeting new valuable contacts for your business is so small. Being on Twitter means that you can look for key influencers in your market, and start to put targeted messages in front of them. Whether you’re looking to connect to form a partnership or position a product or service of high value. Twitter can help you jump from being invisible to that person to being right at the top of their consideration set.

And finally number 1…

This has to be the ability that Twitter gives you to engage with your customers or customers-to-be. Sure you can inform people about your company’s products or services but the magic happens when you stop tweeting and start listening. I think it was Richard Branson that said “you have two ears and one mouth, using them in proportion is not a bad idea!”. This is so true for Twitter. You can find out what people like about your services, what they don’t like, suggestions for improvement, and then you can talk to them.

The fact that you’re still watching this video means that you’re either on Twitter and not sure how or what you should be using it for – or you’re like many people who have been told enough times by colleagues, associates, or partners that you need to be on there.

Hopefully by now you’ve got 5 more reasons why your business should be on Twitter.

Questions?

If you’ve got any questions related to this video, please leave them in the comments section below and I’ll happily get back to you.  This is James Downton, at Froggo Marketing.  I’ll catch up with you next week.

 

3 Ways To Never Run Out Of Blog Content Ideas

When the creative part of your brain packs up and leaves it becomes impossible to think up of new ideas for your blog content.  No matter how hard you try… in fact, the more you try, the harder it gets to land a good idea.

What you’re missing is inspiration and in this short post I’ll be sharing 3 easy tips that you can implement to get your creative juices flowing again.  

#1 Google Reader

This has to go at the top of my list as it’s my favourite way to get a feel for what the latest hot topics are.  Google reader is a Google tool that brings all your favourite RSS feeds into one place.  It’s kind of like a newspaper that’s tailored specifically for you.  You decide on the subjects which is why it works so well if your blog is about a particular topic like SEO or web design.

3-Ways-To-Never-Run-Out-Of-Blog-Content-Ideas

You can scroll through all of the headlines and see what the main topics are about.  Perhaps there’s some ground breaking news in your industry that you can give your opinion about!

#2 LinkedIn Answers

Here you can ask questions about problems that you or your subscribers/customers are having and turn them into new posts.  It also works great the other way.  Go and find some groups that are in your industry/niche.  You want to pick the ones with the highest number of members with the most activity.  Monitor what’s being said, figure out who the key influencers are, and then answer any questions that they have with a new blog post.

Never run out of blog content ideas

“Hey Name, I saw your question about xyz.  I get asked this same question a lot, so you inspired me to write this blog post – hope it helps.”

Now you’re on their radar and you’ve just written a blog post that you know is genuinely of interest to people in your networks right now.  Of course this doesn’t just apply to LinkedIn – it works with Facebook groups and amazingly well with Twitter’s search engine.

#3 Tutorials

It’s a golden ‘oldie but it’s going in my top 3.  Tutorials are great because they solve problems instantly.  And where do people go to solve their problems? That’s right, Google (or Bing and Yahoo if you’re part of some kind of Google hate club).  So, despite the tutorial method being somewhat overused, it’s a great way to dramatically increase traffic to your site/blog from the search engines.

never run out of blog ideas

A great way to find highly effective blog titles for conversion is to use Google’s instant search feature.  The key is… don’t hit search! Just type a word, hit the space bar, and then type another word – see where it takes you!  Start with “how to…” for best results.  Another benefit to this method is that Google are of course giving you these suggestions because they’re popular right now!

how to get a flat stomach

What About You?

So those are my top 3 techniques for unblocking my creative pipes.  Let me know below what techniques work for you to never run out of blog content ideas.

 

How To Write Email Subject Lines That Get Opened

As our client base for campaign management continues to grow each week, one of the top questions I always here is:

“How should we write our subject lines – is there a right way to do it?”

Whilst there’s definitely a right way to do it, there isn’t really a wrong way AS LONG AS you follow certain rules.  Not following the rules and sending out non responsive email subject lines could damage your list as it trains your subscribers to ignore your emails… AND if the majority of your subscribers use an email service provider such as Gmail, then Gmail’s filters will learn that this isn’t something that’s important and they’ll automatically add it to the spam list.  So you can start to see the importance of getting this right.

So to keep you safe I’ve put together a sort of checklist/guide that I’m calling my Subject Line WIN list.  Use these in your auto-responder follow up sequences and your broadcasts and watch your open rates increase dramatically.  So here we go:

1) Avoid The Spam Blockers

Yes there are certain words that spammers use in their emails that you should DEFINITELY avoid putting into your subject lines.  The image below show’s you which one’s to avoid like the plague! – BUT there are literally hundreds of these words.  The good news is that you can get a complete list of these here: Very naughty words.

How-To-Write-Email-Subject-Lines-That-Get-Opened

2) Don’t Use Capital Letters

Using all capitals (shouting in internet land) is another big no-no that triggers the spam filters.  Please don’t do this.  Spam filters will not allow you to shout at people.

3) Use Long Subject Lines

From the testing we’ve carried out in a wide range of different markets, we’ve found that longer subject lines get better open rates.  Approximately 50 characters is a good length.  Of course, this means you get more room to persuade the subscriber to open your email.  Win-Win!

4) No Smoke and Mirrors

Be upfront, honest and tell the subscriber what’s going to be in the email content.  Certainty is one of the core human needs – play to it!  Make people feel that when they click on your email that they’re in control and safe.

5) Use A Number

People love numbers! I’m not sure exactly why this is but it probably borrows power from the need of certainty and our most valuable currency, time.  I.e. What exactly are you going to show me and is it worth my time?

6) Make It Personal

It’s always good to start your email subject lines and your email content with a a first name tag.  It does get attention, however, don’t overuse this.  I’d recommend only using it in the subject line 1 out of every 3 times, sometimes less.  It’s best to use the first name tag when you know you have better rapport with your email list but this will depend on the type of industry you’re in.

7) Ask An Open Question

Asking open questions will make people pause for thought and instantly place themselves into the context or situation that the subject line creates.  It’s also a great way to build intrigue and a sense of curiosity.

8) Use Exciting Words

Well.. as exciting as a word can be.  What I mean here is to use words that pack-a-punch like

  • Essential…
  • Powerful…
  • Must Have…
  • Breakthrough…
  • Proven…
These high voltage words are a winning ingredient to making emails irresistible to open.

9) Time

Everybody worries about running out of time and you should be taking advantage of this with your email subject lines.  You can use it both positively and negatively by either saving people time, like “double email open rates”, or adding time pressure “only 10 hours left to register…”.

Examples That Use The “Subject Line WIN List”

’9 powerful tips to double your email open rate’
‘James, get the proven strategy for increased email open rate’
‘Do your email open rate stats look like this…?’
’2 min video shows exactly how to double your open rate’
‘The 1 thing to avoid that will lose you email opens’

As always, questions, comments and large donations are welcome.