Online marketing 101 - Turfgrass Producers International

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Confused about where to start with online marketing or are you an old hand who is looking for a few tips on how to improve? Join us for this mumbo-jumbo, techno-babble free talk on how online marketing can be used to grow your business. We'll cover pay per click, local search listings, search engine optimization and social media and how it can work for you. You'll walk away with both the strategic (the why) and the tractical (the how) aspects of online marketing that can be immediately used to increase the number of leads that you get from the internet.

Our speaker, Lee Gientke, is the Managing Partner at Webmix Marketing, a Utah based marketing agency that helps small and medium sized businesses grow. They specialize in online marketing, direct mail and marketing strategy. Gientke has nearly a decade of experience helping small and medium size businesses grow with his creative yet practical marketing solutions that focus on return on investment and lead generation.

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  • Begin with a Goal in MindIf and only if you can check YES to the previous considerations should you be considering social media. Once you have made the decision to go forward, the place to start is with your goal in mind.
  • In most instances, you can have four possible outcomes from a social media presence: TrafficAwareness Retention Leads/Sales These goals aren’t mutually exclusive either. I like to say traffic equals leads and leads equal sales. The accountant in the room would arm wrestle with me to say it’s only about sales. I generally agree as that is what helps you make payroll and buys your plane ticket home but there are some instances where awareness, also known as branding, are worthwhile but that’s a discussion for another day. With that goal in mind, and for most of you, I’d say it’s all about leads and sales. The next step to think about is who are your customers and where are they?
  • In most instances, you can have four possible outcomes from a social media presence: TrafficAwareness Retention Leads/Sales These goals aren’t mutually exclusive either. I like to say traffic equals leads and leads equal sales. The accountant in the room would arm wrestle with me to say it’s only about sales. I generally agree as that is what helps you make payroll and buys your plane ticket home but there are some instances where awareness, also known as branding, are worthwhile but that’s a discussion for another day. With that goal in mind, and for most of you, I’d say it’s all about leads and sales. The next step to think about is who are your customers and where are they?
  • While still not the sexy Facebook, Twitter or Pinterest, there’s a good old fashioned blog on your website. This is the second place I’d go once we did the reviews
  • A case for more than just bugs: Urbane Homes. I realize there is a tendency to think very narrowly when developing content for your blog. I also realize bugs aren’t the sexiest topics as well. One thing I’d encourage you to do is to be expansive in what you write about on your blog. Well a Detroit landlord, Eric Brown, is able to keep an average occupancy rate for his apartments above 96% purely because of his blog. His secret? Not selling his product. Instead his blog, which receives more than 75,000 unique visitors per month, is a resource for all things Detroit. He writes restaurant reviews, upcoming band events, STDs and more – just about anything that his audience which is your typical hipster or young professional in their late 20s or early 30s who are looking for date ideas and things to do. He says it best
  • “We craft content on our Web site that can be shared, which raises our chances exponentially for exposure. It takes a while, but you have to plant the seeds.”Eric BrownOwner Urbane Apartments
  • And so on. The thing about tackling blogging this way is that if people are asking you over the phone, you sure as heck know they are looking for it on the internet via Google. You also know when certain pests become a pest. There isn’t any reason for you to prewrite those articles before hand and post them when the season comes into play.
  • A frequent complaint I get from clients when I ask them to blog is that they don’t know what to write about. The first place we turn is to talk to the technicians and the people answering the phones. We have them write down every question they get from a customer or prospective customer. These questions then become the title of a blog post. We typically end up with articles like Is green pest control effective?What do bed bug bites look like?Orange Oil For Termites? The thing about this strategy is that if people are asking about it on the phone, they sure as heck are looking for it in Google. Once you’ve covered that, there are things like  Current issues of the day, e.g. bedbugs  Seasonal issues: termites, ants, etc  Controversial industry practices (be bold, take a stand – things like Orange Oil sucks!)  Community items: is there an event your company will be at? Or a political issue that will impact the business community?
  • A frequent complaint I get from clients when I ask them to blog is that they don’t know what to write about. The first place we turn is to talk to the technicians and the people answering the phones. We have them write down every question they get from a customer or prospective customer. These questions then become the title of a blog post. We typically end up with articles like Is green pest control effective?What do bed bug bites look like?Orange Oil For Termites? The thing about this strategy is that if people are asking about it on the phone, they sure as heck are looking for it in Google. Once you’ve covered that, there are things like  Current issues of the day, e.g. bedbugs  Seasonal issues: termites, ants, etc  Controversial industry practices (be bold, take a stand – things like Orange Oil sucks!)  Community items: is there an event your company will be at? Or a political issue that will impact the business community?
  • How many of you would like to grow your commercial business? Linkedin is the equivalent Facebook but with a professional bent. From an immediate blush, it’s kinda like an online resume but it’s really a powerful business tool. I’ve noticed that too many PCOs have Linkedin profiles but don’t take the time to complete them. Take the time to get a good high quality picture of yourself here. Complete the company section and your education. Linkedin is also a bit like an online rolodex for business connections. I keep a very separate profile and persona on Linkedin versus Facebook. There’s a good chance I won’t accept any of you as friends on Facebook but will accept you as a connection on Linkedin. Sorry but that’s the truth. Gee, great. Let me share one of Linkedin’s most awesome features (I can teach a whole hour on Linkedin): Linked in Groups. Let’s start with another case study from PCO Bookkeepers
  • How many of you know and or use PCO Bookkeepers? They are a accounting firm that specializes in helping PCOs with their accounting and finance functions. It is a group on Llinkedin that is home to several thousand PMPs and people who service them such as attorneys, HR specialists, marketers (like me!) – really any sort of person you would want to have on your team. Dan, the owner and manager of the group recently told me that this group is one of their major sources of clients. I can certainly see why. The focus on the group here to for everyone to help everyone out. We share our common knowledge and those who are consistent with helping others get recognized as an expert. Dan is certainly one of them. And if you were to look at this group, you’ll never see Dan saying you have to use him to be a member of the group or for him to answer a question for you. The bottom line here, people do business with people they know, like and trust. By being helpful within these groups and answering questions, posting questions of your own, you will get the recognition as someone worth doing business with. There are literally thousands of groups like Dan’s on linkedin. I’d start with Dan’s group and any group related to your service area. Many chambers of commerce have groups, perhaps the local BOMA has a group. By being a resouce and a trusted expert within these communities, you’ll be the first person that gets turned to when you can fulfill a need like pest control. And it won’t you won’t even need to sell. It will be just a matter of collecting a credit card number.
  • Online marketing 101 - Turfgrass Producers International

    1. 1. Online Marketing 1012013 TPI Midwinter Conference
    2. 2. About Me…• First “real” job was doing SEO, PPC, online marketing and catalogue for neutraceutics firm ten+ years ago• Moved to second largest sub-prime lead generation firm in the country• Recruited to Utah to work for online marketing agency that was recently acquired by Deluxe (the check company)• Started Webmix Marketing 4+ years ago, doing SEO, PPC, direct mail and marketing strategy for home services companies (primarily)• Golfer, Crossfitter, cat lover, and Sagittarius
    3. 3. Begin with a Goal in Mind
    4. 4. WHY?• Few SMBs ask why they are doing something or have clearly defined objectives – Competitive pressure – Ignorance – WOW factor (I’m the only one with this shiny widget (app, Facebook page, etc.) – Marketing is not aligned with business objectives, i.e. attracting a specific type of customer• Most SMBs fall into the HOW trap – Vendor/employee presents nice sounding stats on visitors to a website or something without any relationship to your business goals • “Branding” is never a reason unless you are Coca-Cola.
    5. 5. Some Goals • Traffic • Awareness • Retention • Leads/Sales
    6. 6. Search Engine Marketing
    7. 7. People are looking for you82% of Local Searchers follow up offline via an in-store visit, phone call, orpurchase, emphasizing the importance for marketers to integrate theiron- and offline information. Of these, 61% made purchases. –TMP Directional Marketing Over 33% of all Google searches from a desktop are about a place and include a local qualifier such as city, state, zip code, etc. –Ed Parsons, Google Engineer, 201253% of all Bing searches from a mobile device are looking for a local serviceor product. –Stefan Weitz, Microsoft
    8. 8. But can they find you?• Less than 50% of the 18-20 million local small businesses are online• Only a small percentage of those who are online are actively advertising on Google, Yahoo and other sites• Consumers are more and more relying on mobile devices to conduct business.• Millions of potential businesses will start advertising online in the next few years• Know they need to be online, but, “where do I begin?”
    9. 9. Why is online marketing the best use of my limitedadvertising budget?  Highly Measurable ROI  Low Cost of Entry  Cost Effective  Change copy or advertisements at anytime  Only paying for customers looking for your product or service
    10. 10. How does it work?1. Local Business Listings 32. Natural Listings3. Sponsored Links 2 3 1 2
    11. 11. Local Business ListingsLocal Business Listings are freebut you have to claim your listingGoogle:https://www.google.com/placesYahoo:http://listings.local.yahoo.com 1Bing.comhttp://www.bing.com/businessportal
    12. 12. Important Pieces of Local Listings• Use specific keywords when creating your listing – More keywords (within reason) the better• Write a complete description of your business – The search engines use your description to determine relevance for various searches (Reston Pest control vs. Reston exterminator vs. Reston ant control)• Double check contact details – Consider obtaining a call tracking number for your online advertising efforts
    13. 13. “Natural Listings”Search Engines are ultimatedemocracies. Your website’splacement is determined byother people linking to you andthe content on your site.• Be descriptive 2• Some ideas of where to getlinks for your site: •Local Chamber of Commerce •Local Newspaper website •TPI 2
    14. 14. Natural Listings IIWhat the link says is important too Reston Sod Farm is better than Chuck’s A+ SodIn geek speak, this is called “anchor text”
    15. 15. Sponsored ListingsSearch Engines make their moneywhen you click on an advertisementAdvertisers bid on keywords like artcollectors at an auction. 3- Generally speaking, the ad withthe most clicks and highest bidwins highest placement 3-Successful paid advertising hingesaround three things: -Your keywords -Ad Copy -Managing your ROI
    16. 16. Sponsored Listings II• Ad Copy – Ad copy should be compelling and benefits oriented. Why would someone want to visit your website? • Are you giving a discount? Have you been in business since 1909? Are you BBB rated? If so, tell me but make it brief. • For Google, put your phone number in the ad• Keyword Selection – Use local modifiers plus keywords that describe your business. • “Pest Control 20170” is similar but distinct from “Reston Pest Control”. • Don’t forget local slang like “tri-state pest control”• Managing to Your Return on Investment – The internet is trackable. You should keep track of expenses and adjust your expenditures accordingly. • Google has great analytics software and it’s FREE! • Use a call tracking phone number on your website and in your online campaigns to measure calls and customers.
    17. 17. Social Media Three quick case studies on social media success
    18. 18. The Case for Blogging• Google rewards websites with fresh content• Provides a needed service for their audience.• Your blog can be your best presales tool• Blogs are interactive and prospects and current customers can leave comments behind
    19. 19. WHAT: Full Apartments, HOW: Blog •75,000 Unique Visitors a month • Occupancy rates above 96%... In DETROIT!
    20. 20. “We craft content on our Website that can be shared, whichraises our chancesexponentially for exposure. Ittakes a while, but you have toplant the seeds.”-Eric BrownOwnerUrbane Apartments
    21. 21. Answering Questions Blog bailed River Pool out 2005 - Partner Embezzled $200,000 2008 – Beginning of Great Recession 2009 – Discovers blogging 2011 – Rockin’!
    22. 22. Answering QuestionsYour blog as a pre-sales toolSet the hook before they are inthe water by answeringquestions!And don’t be afraid of otherthings…
    23. 23. Answering QuestionsYour blog as a pre-sales toolSet the hook before they are inthe water by answeringquestions!And don’t be afraid of otherthings…
    24. 24. Linkedin
    25. 25. PCO Business Solutions Group
    26. 26. Want to Hire? Top 10 Questions to Ask1. What is your current client load2. What is the average size of your client?3. How many w-2 employees? Is everyone based in the US?4. Are you a Google Authorized Reseller or Google Adwords Certified?5. Do you guarantee top 10 results within X period of time?6. Do you start with SEO or PPC?7. Describe your process for keyword selection8. How long have you been in business?9. How do you optimize and test for results?10. Have any of your clients ever been blacklisted or penalized by the search engines?
    27. 27. Q&A/Contact me Contact Me: Lee Gientke Managing Partner Webmix Marketing lee@webmixmarketing.com 805/455-7415 Download this presentation at www.webmixmarketing.com/tpi

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