Monetize blog vector

If you’re smart about it, a blog can be more than just a marketing tool. A strategically designed blog can be a monetizable asset that pushes your business forward. Sounds good, right? Well, it requires a concerted effort on all fronts.

First off, you have to start with a specific idea. As entrepreneur Neil Patel says, “When it comes to creating a money-making blog, you don’t need a revolutionary idea. But, your blog should be focused on something specific.”

In order to have any possibility of monetizing a blog, you have to focus on designing and developing a blog that’s quick, engaging, and specifically targets your desired audience. Nail these aspects and there’s no limit to your potential.

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festive wrapped present

The holidays are a great reason to connect with your customers and show them a the personal side of your small business. Of course, every business is promoting sales, discounts, and limited-time offers, but there are softer ways to engage your clients without asking them to make a purchase. Blogging is a prime way to provide timely, valuable content to your readers that speak to the holiday season and keep them coming back for more helpful tips and material.

If you’re wondering how to position your blog for increased traffic and subtly generate sales, this is the article for you! Try these four tips to successfully blog for business during the holidays.

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Blog writing concept

Do you ever wonder how certain writers and marketers are able to consistently produce content that gets shared and clicked? Well, it has very little to do with their writing abilities and everything to do with the presentation of their content. Specifically, it has a lot to do with their headlines.

How to Write Headlines That Get Shared
You spend an hour brainstorming a topic. Then you send the topic over to your writer and it takes her a couple of hours to gather sources and turn it into a rough draft. She sends it back over, you review it, pass it along to the copyeditor, and you’re just about ready to publish. Oh yeah, we need a headline, you realize. So, you take all of 30 seconds and paste a headline into the article.

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Infographic vector

We’ve talked a lot about the importance of visual engagement for small business marketing. From beautiful photography to engaging color palettes, a business’s visual imagery plays into its marketing success. In fact, “visual content is more than 40x more likely to get shared on social media than other types of content.” For small businesses, integrating visual content into their business and marketing strategies is essential to stay competitive and relevant in the marketplace.

Today, we’re going to hone in on one type of visual tool: infographics. Infographics have risen in popularity over the past few years for a number of reasons. They provide an immense amount of information in an easy to understand and easy to retain way. Here are three reasons why you should jump on the infographic bandwagon if you’re interested in growing followers and brand awareness:

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Facebook Marketing in 2016

Despite the rumblings from bloggers that Facebook has peaked and other social media are overtaking its presence, Facebook remains the social entity that keeps on growing. It has evolved from its initial form into an interactive platform for personal and professional usage. As we’ve seen in 2016, Facebook has no plans of slowing down and only seeks to expand its reach to appeal to individuals and companies around the world. During the Facebook F8 Summit held in April, the company announced countless enhancements to the platform in order to maintain and reclaim precious advertising market share.

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Mobile Marketing icons

Despite being only halfway through 2016, the stats about mobile usage are staggering. Increasingly, people are using mobile devices, such as smartphones and tablets, for more than checking email and texting. These devices have become an integral piece of people’s lives. In fact, according to a Facebook study,

73% of people always have their mobile device with them.”

This is a clear indication that mobile usage is booming and shows no indication of slowing down.

For small businesses, integrating mobile marketing into their business strategy is necessary. Without mobile assimilation, businesses of any size are more likely to fail because they’re missing the majority of their target markets. This doesn’t mean you have to turn your marketing plan upside down or find additional resources (i.e. money) to support these tactics.

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Content is king vector

As Bill Gates famously said in 1996, “Content is King” and the sentiment still rings true today twenty years later. His quote continues to resonate because business is no longer about advertising strategy; it’s about how informative a business is to its audience. Content influences a business’s authority and reputation in the marketplace. It takes strategy, research, and time to compile valuable content for your audiences.

When you craft a great piece, such as a blog post, get the most mileage out of your original thoughts by repurposing it in multiple ways. It is a seamless way to break your information into bite-sized pieces that can cover a broad range of outlets. Since SEO is a real metric that determines how credible your business is in its industry, casting a wider net for your content increases rankings and perceived expertise.

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Marketing icon vector

For small businesses, keeping operations afloat is the primary concern, and marketing is something that is done ad hoc or not at all. However, for businesses to thrive in the competitive marketplace, marketing of some sort is needed. With limited time and resources, traditional marketing plans don’t tend to make the list when it comes to small and micro business. They don’t make sense and end up depleting your energy and time. There are many ways to utilize your existing resources to generate free marketing and build your business’s awareness within its target audience.

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Rebranding banner

For small businesses, developing a brand means working from scratch to piece together a cohesive and inspiring representation of their business. Once a business is up and running, it can be daunting to think of rebranding. You put a ton of time, effort, and resources into perfecting your brand, its imagery, and tone of voice. Yet, given how quickly audiences and industries are evolving, in order to stay relevant, businesses of all sizes must continually innovate and rebrand.

There is good news, though! Rebrands do not equal starting from scratch and forgetting everything you designed for your initial brand. A rebrand does not mean your business is failing, but rather indicates that your business is aware of its competition, market, and audience preferences and wants to stay up with the times. It can also incorporate slight changes, instead of total overall, such as realigning your brand promises.

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Famous brand logos

As you well know, your business logo is much more than an image or a colorful compilation of words. It communicates the value, purpose, and integrity of your brand and plays a significant part in how people perceive your business. Whether you have an established logo or are at the beginning phases of creating your first one, there are a few design considerations you should make in order to craft a compelling and memorable logo.

First things first, do your research and know your audience.

Knowing who you are trying to engage and what kinds of images, colors, and language they respond to is critical for crafting a logo that is recognizable and distinct from your competition. Your competitors and other industry leaders are a great resource for determining what you want your brand to look and feel like. Take note of what stands out to you. Which symbols and color combinations evoke the feelings you want your logo to generate?

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