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20 Replies Latest reply: Aug 13, 2009 3:06 PM by WebVisible RSS

Event 8/13: How to Maximize the Impact of Online Advertising

SBC Team Master
Currently Being Moderated
You've built a great small business and know that the right type of marketing can help you achieve your goals. But, with so many advertising options and so little time to investigate them, you need proven strategies and techniques to make the most of your investment and help drive new business opportunity. The Internet is now the number one choice for consumers when looking for a local business, product or service. Discover the most effective ways to leverage online advertising to grow your business. Learn how to maximize your exposure, convert visitors to customers and accurately track your return on investment. Kirsten Mangers, an expert in Internet marketing for small business will be online to help you navigate these challenges drawing from their experience and a tool called CompassTM.

Kirsten will be on SBOC to answer questions such as:

  • What are some quick-hit strategies that I can use to ensure I'm investing the right amount and in the right advertising areas?
  • Besides asking customers how they heard about my business, how can I measure the true impact of advertising on my bottom line?
  • Like most small businesses, I don't sell products through a Web site, so how important is an information-only Web site to the success of my marketing & advertising efforts?
  • How much time/effort should I spend trying to optimize my Web site for high search engine rankings?

 

About Kirsten

Kirsten Mangers is chief executive officer and co-founder of WebVisible. A recognized small-business advocate, she has delivered on the promise of leveraging the Internet to drive local traffic to local businesses.

 

WebVisible, a global leader in local interactive advertising, blends art and science to ensure local merchants can be found online at anytime, on any device, in order to drive new opportunities through major search engines such as Google, Yahoo! and MSN; online display and video ad networks; and mobile/location-based advertising.

Kirsten will be live on SBOC on August 13 at 2:00 p.m. EST. However, if you can't participate at that specific day/time - you can post a question now and check back during or after the event for Kirsten's response. Kirsten will try to answer as many questions as possible on the 13th, but may not get to all of them. Note, you do not need to register for the event. You simply need to be a member of SBOC to post a question. If you don't have a user ID, join now, it's free.

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  • Re: Event 8/13: How to Maximize the Impact of Online Advertising
    antiques4me Newbie
    Currently Being Moderated
    What are different online advertising options if I own a physical store? And how do I go about determining which advertising method is right for me? A friend of mine suggested that I purchase an add on City Search. Not sure if it's worth it or not. What are my options? And how much does each cost?
    • Re: Event 8/13: How to Maximize the Impact of Online Advertising
      WebVisible Newbie
      Currently Being Moderated

      Thanks for your question. There are many options available if you own a physical storefront.

      One thing you should do is make sure you get a Local Business listing on the Search Engines (the map listings at the top of the search results). All you need to do is claim and verify your listing at the Google Local Business Center and Bing's Local Listing Center. It's a simple process and a way to get your business to show up when someone looks for "flowers Newport Beach" for example. Google has a new free dashboard showing stats such as how many times your business comes up as a search result, how often people click through, as well as how many times people generate driving directions through Google Maps, and where those people come from.

      There's also a great new tool for small businesses called Compass which provides expert guidance on how much to spend on advertising & what types of advertising to use to achieve specific revenue goals or maximize profit.

      Regarding CitySearch... it is a directory and based on a pay-per-click model, so cost varies. For example if one searches for "Dentist, Chicago" and clicks on the listing, the advertiser is charged, based on the competitiveness for that keyword phrase, for the click. The searcher is directed to the Business Profile page for more information (something to know - on the Business Profile page, any live link the visitor clicks such as Read Review or Get Directions also charges the advertiser).

      Another option, and the most cost-effective method for generating leads is "search engine marketing." It is also sold in an auction-based pay-per-click environment, but directly in the places people are looking like Google, Yahoo!, Bing and others. A major advantage of this form of online advertising is you direct searchers to your unique and exclusive Landing Page where you control the message and your branding. You decide how frequently your ads appear, and for what keywords. You are only charged for the initial click to drive the interested searcher to your Landing Page, and you get the ability to track every action a visitor takes (calls, email, map/page prints, coupon downloads, etc).
  • Re: Event 8/13: How to Maximize the Impact of Online Adverti
    Bluesuit Apprentice
    Currently Being Moderated
    How effective is advertising in online social media? I hear that people are often too busy socializing on these sites, that ads are simply ignored? What do you think?
    • Re: Event 8/13: How to Maximize the Impact of Online Adverti
      WebVisible Newbie
      Currently Being Moderated

      The latest information on social networking shows us that local advertising plays a major role in individual user sessions. In fact, Facebook just announced that over 70% of their advertising revenues are from local advertising.

       


      Because people are spending a longer than normal session on social sites, your advertising is being viewed for longer periods of time, giving it potential for higher conversion.

       


      The advertising is targeted based on your user profile thus it is normally of higher relevancy.

       

      Always be careful to make sure your advertising content is crisp, geographically relevant and appearing in the right area of a social site
    • Re: Event 8/13: How to Maximize the Impact of Online Adverti
      WebVisible Newbie
      Currently Being Moderated

      Always take advantage of the "free" stuff! Your first step is to build a personal profile page and the next step is to build a company profile page. List your affiliations and corporate page on all your collateral and email signatures.

      Example: See us on Facebook, Twitter, MySpace, etc. Include your "handle" for all. Let your customers know they can be a "fan" of your company. You can even start promoting specials and new offers on your profile page. A quick, easy and CHEAP way to self-promote!

      To learn more on effective usage of social media , visit the WebVisible Blog Post at: http://blog.webvisible.com/blog/webvisible/0/0/why-should-a-plumber-be-on-facebook-
  • Re: Event 8/13: How to Maximize the Impact of Online Advertising
    MajorNathan Newbie
    Currently Being Moderated
    What has been or will be the effect of the search engine consolidation?? Are SEO and natural search still something that should be a high priority when running a website??
    • Re: Event 8/13: How to Maximize the Impact of Online Advertising
      WebVisible Newbie
      Currently Being Moderated

      I believe you are referring to the latest announcement that Yahoo and Microsoft are partnering in the Search Engine Network world. The deal we affectionately call Microhoo or Bing-Hoo! This is actually good news for those of us advertising as local businesses online.

       


      Microsoft has always had phenomenal search technology with MSN but has not achieved the audience level of Yahoo. The combined entity will provide us a better search and advertising experience combined with a far superior reach to users. Together they hit 22% plus of the search market and become a viable competitor to Google.

       


      "Optimizing" a web site to appear high in the search results in engines like Google, Yahoo! or Bing can be effective, but often elusive and time consuming. You are competing with businesses that have much more content. And although many factors play a role in search results, content is usually king.

       


      So, getting to the top 10 in the natural listings, and staying there, can be very difficult. Keep in mind, if your listing doesn't appear on the first page of the search results, you are probably out of luck. Consumers generally will not continue to click through, page after page of results-they usually click on only the top few that appear in the search results.

       


      Search engines use complex algorithms to give consumers the most mathematically relevant results to their query. To achieve top placement in the organic rankings, be prepared to spend the time (and expense) optimizing your Web site on an ongoing basis. The algorithms that determine the result placements are fluid, and different for each engine. A third place ranking can quickly drop to 40th or 100th place so ongoing optimization is necessary.
  • Re: Event 8/13: How to Maximize the Impact of Online Advertising
    SBC Team Master
    Currently Being Moderated

    Community Members,

     


    Please join us in welcoming Kirsten Mangers to your Small Business Online Community. Kirsten is here to answer

     

    questions on how to maximize the impact of online advertising to grow your business. Today, Kirsten will be using

     

    the screen name WebVisible.

     


    About Kirsten

     

    Kirsten is chief executive officer and co-founder of WebVisible. A recognized small-business advocate, she has

     

    delivered on the promise of leveraging the Internet to drive local traffic to local businesses.

     


    WebVisible, a global leader in local interactive advertising, blends art and science to ensure local merchants can

     

    be found online at anytime, on any device, in order to drive new opportunities through major search engines such as

     

    Google, Yahoo! and MSN; online display and video ad networks; and mobile/location-based advertising.

     


    To all Community Members
    If you have questions for Kirsten, post it here by simply hitting reply and then refresh your browsers often to

     

    view Kirsten's responses. She will try to answer as many of your questions as possible.
  • Re: Event 8/13: How to Maximize the Impact of Online Advertising
    SBC Team Master
    Currently Being Moderated
    Kirsten will be answering the question from antiques4me first. Keep posting your questions by hitting the reply button.
  • Re: Event 8/13: How to Maximize the Impact of Online Advertising
    SBC Team Master
    Currently Being Moderated

    What are some quick-hit strategies that I can use to ensure I'm investing the right amount and in the right

     

    advertising areas?
    • Re: Event 8/13: How to Maximize the Impact of Online Advertising
      WebVisible Newbie
      Currently Being Moderated

      As stated in the previous post, there's a great new tool for small businesses called Compass which provides expert guidance on how much to spend on advertising & what types of advertising to use to achieve specific revenue goals or maximize profit.

       

      Compass Lite provides semi-customized results & recommends total spending & breaks down how much to spend online vs. in traditional channels.

       

      The full version of Compass allows you to customize the results to all of your business characteristics plus it recommends which types of online & traditional advertising would work best for your business.

       

      This is a wonderful way to take the "mystery" out of what your marketing allotments should be for your business.
  • Re: Event 8/13: How to Maximize the Impact of Online Advertising
    MajorNathan Newbie
    Currently Being Moderated
    When using an integrated advertising campaign that drives people to my store or the website, how do I figure out where the traffic (foot and electronic) came from?? I have a local search optimized so it is hard to tell where the conversions came from.
    • Re: Event 8/13: How to Maximize the Impact of Online Advertising
      WebVisible Newbie
      Currently Being Moderated

      Tracking the efficacy of your advertising campaigns remains one of the largest challenges to a small business owner. Yes, there is the proverbial how did you hear about me, but what of the available technologies to simplify tracking your leads?

       


      As stated earlier, the Compass Lite tool provides constant access to advertising efficacy across multiple formats traditional and non-traditional.

       


      As for the online world, we have never had so much visibility into our ad dollars spent. For instance, at WebVisible we offer products that include email lead forms, call tracking numbers, promotional URL's, coupons and video. All events are tracked moment-by-moment and in real time. You can see where your customers are calling from and even see if they have printed driving directions. All the data is available in a 24/7 merchant center for the business owner's review.

       


      This simplifies the process of knowing where the customer comes from and allows us to focus our marketing efforts on the high return on investment strategies we all need. It makes the term "I don't know how much of my marketing works or not" out of play!
  • Re: Event 8/13: How to Maximize the Impact of Online Advertising
    SBC Team Master
    Currently Being Moderated

    Kirsten,

    On behalf of the SBOC Team and the members of the Small Business Online Community, we wanted to say we truly

    appreciated your time today and your professional responses to user questions. Community members, while our

    session with Kirsten has now concluded, please feel free to discuss today's session and the questions answered.

    Again, if you'd like more information about Kirsten and WebVisible, visit www.webvisible.com.

    Thanks again,
    The SBOC Team
  • Re: Event 8/13: How to Maximize the Impact of Online Advertising
    SBC Team Master
    Currently Being Moderated

    Ok, just want to take a second to see if the community has any questions? Feel free to reply, your questions will

     

    be answered in order it was received. Thanks!

     

    Again, please refresh your browsers.
  • Re: Event 8/13: How to Maximize the Impact of Online Advertising
    SBC Team Master
    Currently Being Moderated

     

    A few weeks ago, Brent Leary spoke about mobile marketing. What are your thoughts on the viability of mobile

     

    devices for marketing purposes? Is this an area that a small business should explore or should that be left to the

     

    larger corporates?
    • Re: Event 8/13: How to Maximize the Impact of Online Advertising
      WebVisible Newbie
      Currently Being Moderated

      I absolutely believe that mobile advertising is something the small business should consider. I think of local usage online as many different personas. You search at home differently than you do at work and again, differently when you are mobile. In fact, data from Kelsey shows us

       

      70 percent of U.S. mobile subscribers with access did Internet searches on their phones in 2008

       

      This is up 14 percent from 2007.

       


      Advertising on mobile devices is normally quick, concise text messaging or a website or landing page that can render on the mobile device. There are several things to consider:

       


      Firstly, there are many relevant applications on iPhones or on the major devices available for media purchase such as Yellowpages.com and Google Local Listings. Make sure you ask your sale representatives where they distribute their content in the wireless world.

       


      Secondly, and if you are serious, make sure your content on your website can render on any mobile device.

       


      Remember, most folks searching for products and services on their wireless devices are searching "hyper-locally." They desire local business and not just the national brands.
  • Re: Event 8/13: How to Maximize the Impact of Online Advertising
    SBC Team Master
    Currently Being Moderated

    Isn't Compass is just a tool? It can only offer guidance and not definitive direction. How do I adjust the results from

     

    Compass in the most effective manner to have it make sense for my small business.
    • Re: Event 8/13: How to Maximize the Impact of Online Advertising
      WebVisible Newbie
      Currently Being Moderated

      Compass provides solid directional guidance on budget & allocation, the "Lite" version is free and doesn't offer as much customization or detailed recommendations, but when the full version is made available, you'll be able to tailor the recommendations to your specific business characteristics, see how much should be spent on each type of advertising & even create your own advertising plan to see how it would compare to the one Compass recommends.

       


      Companies such as WebVisible can assist in "translating" the Compass recommendations into actionable marketing techniques such as campaign specific keywords, ad copy and geographically relevant content. Compass is truly meant to act as a "tour guide" for effective advertising placements and WebVisible assists in getting you to your destination.

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