Anatomy of a Sales Funnel Tap House Media

Lead generation is the marketing process of stimulating and capturing interest in a product or service for the purpose of developing a sales pipeline (or marketing funnel). It is a proven way to capture business leads and build long-lasting relationships with your customers. You’ve heard of the term “Sales Funnel” but what exactly does it entail?

Glad you asked! Let the Tap House Team break it down for you right here with a funnel from our friends over at LeadPages:

sales-funnel-success

VISITOR:
A visitor has discovered your business or offer through one of your marketing channels, whether that’s your website, blog, or social media page, or perhaps Facebook advertising. On any of these channels, you’ll need to have a …

Tap House Media Sales Funnel example

 

CALL-TO-ACTION:
A call-to-action or CTA is an image, button, or message that calls website visitors to take some sort of action (Sign Up, Download, Get Started). When it comes to lead generation, this action should navigate to a …

Tap House Media Sales Funnel example CTA

 

LANDING PAGE:
A landing page is a web page a visitor lands on for a distinct purpose. This page should ONLY include information about the product, service, or offer in your advertisement. While a landing page can be used for various reasons, one of its most frequent uses is to capture leads through …

Tap House Media Landing page example with Lead pages

 

ONLINE FORM:
Forms are typically hosted on landing pages, although they can technically be embedded anywhere on your site. They consist of a series of fields (name, email, etc.) that collect information in exchange for an …

Tap House Media Sales Funnel Offer example

 

OFFER:
An offer is the content or something of value that’s being “offered” on the landing page. The offer must have enough value to a visitor to merit providing their personal information in exchange for access to it.

Tap House Media Sales Funnel offer

 

LeadPages is our #1 recommendation for building effective landing pages that help generate leads, grow your email list, and make sales.

Click Here To Try Leadpages for yourself!

6 types of video to use in your online marketing

two-women-on-computer

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) can be a scary world for a blogger or business owner to enter. Especially if you’re fresh out of the gate. You know you need a content marketing system to help grow your following but how can you factor SEO into that plan if you’re a complete newbie? Understanding Google’s algorithm takes some practice but can be achieved with a bit of trial and error and on-page improvements to your posts.

SEO Strategy For Online Growth

If you’re just starting out, there’s really no need to get crazy with SEO quite yet. We suggest starting slow and mastering the basics before diving in head first. Read our suggestions for implementing a simple SEO plan that can make a HUGE impact on your Google rankings in as little as a few weeks.

Below are 7 easy ways to improve your SEO rankings and increase your organic traffic fast

 Research In Demand Keywords: Before pouring your heart and soul out online, head over to Google Keyword Planner and do a search for niche specific keywords related to your blog. You’re going to want to use keywords that have a high monthly search (10K – 100K) but low to medium competition. This is going to be your best bet for ranking on page 1 for your blog post.

*Note that If you choose to use a high competition keyword you’ll be going up against massive amounts of information that have already been written, published, and ranked on Google. So make things easy for yourself and choose keywords appropriately.*

The best part of Google Keyword Planner is that it offers “ideas” for related keywords that you can tie in and sprinkle around your post. Not only is Google Keyword Planner a powerful keyword research tool but also a fantastic brainstorming tool. Did I happen to mention it’s FREE?

 Improve Your Website Speed: I can’t stress enough how important this is! Did you know that even 1 second delay in page load time can lead to a WHOPPING 7% loss in conversions, 11% fewer page views, and a 16% decrease in customer satisfaction? Not to mention hurt your SEO rankings with our best pal, Google. Having a speedy website starts with a reliable website host. Do your research and choose a platform that has excellent customer reviews, guaranteed uptime, and fast servers. It’s also a good idea to boost website speed by using a CDN, a caching plugin, and an image optimizer.

To determine if you’re already lacking in the speed department, head to GTMetrix for detailed fix suggestions and issues affecting your website speed. Our suggestions for best WordPress hosting platforms with top-notch speed performance are WP Engine, InMotion Hosting, and SiteGround. For a more in-depth explanation of why we love these platforms, read our post Our Top Picks For WordPress Website Hosting.

 Start Writing Captivating Headlines: Writing strong headlines will be your best tool for luring readers. Telling your audience how you’ll solve their problem or answer their questions should be front and center in your post title. Using action or power words alongside your keyword(s) will intrigue your potential customers to read more. A few words to encourage clicks are must-have, hack, complete, ultimate, formula, epic. (i.e 10 Must-Have Plugins For Your WordPress Website or Our Ultimate Home Page Checklist To Convert Website Leads).

If you’re stuck in this department, borrow titles and descriptions from Google AdWord & Facebook Ads. Rember your readers are looking to solve a problem when searching on Google. Telling them how you’re going to do this in 10 words or less is going to be your best bet for getting clicks.

 Post Long, Engaging Content (at least 1,800 words): You’re the expert in your field, right? So hunker down and write a solid post complete with all those high searched (with low-medium competition) keywords strategically placed throughout your post. Writing valuable content takes time. You may work well with an outline or you could be a stream-of-conscious writer. Either way, make sure you have a plan to cover all your important pieces to your content puzzle complete with engaging imagery or videos. Of course, you’ll need to make your imagery SEO friendly with descriptive image names and alt text. Read more about SEO friendly imagery here.

SEO Course To Grow Organic Traffic And Boost Your Business

 Write Guest Posts On Other reputable Blogs: Being a guest blogger can give your website so much street cred through backlinking. A backlink is one of the most valuable pieces of SEO gold because it’s essentially a “vote of confidence” from one blog (or website) to another.  Receiving a popular backlink is a signal to search engines that your content is valuable and worthy of appearing on a search engine result page (SERP). If you belong to a few Facebook groups with good engagement, you could find bloggers in your niche to cross-promote with. I find that strategy to be the most user-friendly for bloggers who are just starting out as the group is usually a supportive community of people encouraging growth and success for their fellow entrepreneurs and bloggers. When you reach out for a guest post opportunity, make sure to include contextual links in your article, instead of just the author byline.

 Establish A Link Building Strategy: Breathe new life into a dying blog post or establish an interlinking system by adding links to other posts (created by you) in your article. This process will establish a site architecture with a crawlable link structure thus helping Google better understand what your content is about. Interlinking also encourages people to spend more time on your blog, which improves bounce rates, allowing Google to see you as a legit resource for your keyword(s). Woah, did you get all of that? Internal linking is really a super easy way to help your SEO improve with very little effort.

Start Using Pinterest: Last, but definitely not least, set up a Pinterest account for business and start pinning all of your blog posts. Somehow, in the midst of the social media rise, Pinterest got coupled in with platforms like Facebook and Twitter and became looked at as another social outlet. But it’s really not. The best way I can describe Pinterest is a hybrid between a visual search engine and social platform. As a visual search engine, your imagery and keywords play together to make magic happen. Millions of people are actively searching for information and solutions on Pinterest. What they receive are results in the form of Pins where you entice your potential reader to click for more information with captivating imagery and headlines. Brilliant, right?

Learning this platform takes a bit of time to master but with determination, you can start seeing MASSIVE traffic to your website even if you’re posts are fresh out of your computer. Already rocking Pinterest for your blog or website? Take it to the next level with promoted pins. We suggest starting with a free course with Monica from Redefining Mom. Click here to enroll.

You don’t have to be an SEO expert to make huge strides in your organic traffic. By starting with the information given above, you can lay a solid foundation to expand on. Being armed with information is always the first step to mastering any skill. And SEO and blogging go hand in hand. So, get looking on Google Keyword Planner and set forth and concur Google. Good luck!

SEO Course To Grow Your Online Traffic

Speeding Up Your WordPress Website

When it comes to websites, speed definitely matters. Did you know that quick loading pages improves user experience, increases your page views (duh), and helps with your SEO? Yea, it’s that important! According to a StrangeLoop case study involving biggies like Amazon and Google, a 1 second delay in page load time can lead to a WHOPPING 7% loss in conversions, 11% fewer page views, and 16% decrease in customer satisfaction.

StrangeLoop-case-study-speed-up-wordpress

This means having a slow website could potentially cost you big bucks. Did I get your attention? If you’re finding that your WordPress website, or clients websites, are running in snail mode, don’t fret. Speed solutions are out there and chances are your slow site can be fixed with a few easy changes and updates.

6 Easy Ways To Speed Up Your Slow WordPress Website:

Choose A Great (not good) Host: When you’re starting out, a shared server may seem like a great deal but it comes at an incredibly big cost. Yep, you guessed it, a slow ass website and frequent downtime. Do yourself, and business, a favor, and invest in a host that is proficient in WordPress, optimizes servers for speed and has excellent customer support. Check out this post we wrote about Best WordPress Hosting for 2018.

Install A Caching Plugin: Our fave is the premium plugin WP Rocket and it will drastically improve page loads time with a click of a button. Of course, there are free ones out there too but do your research before installing freebies. Some plugins don’t mix well with themes and other plugins you may have already installed.

Split Long Posts Into Pages: Readers love rich content but if you’re writing style tends to be a tad long-winded, consider breaking up your content into pages. WordPress comes with built-in functionality to do that. Simply add the <!––nextpage––> tag in your article where you want to split it into next page.

Optimize Your Images: I can’t tell you how many times we come across client websites with HUGE imagery. I’m talking MB’s, people. This in itself will make your website drag and can actually cause it to freeze. Thankfully there is a free and reputable plugin called WP Smush that will compress your images for you fast and easily.

Use A Third Party Video Host: Don’t ever host your giant video files on your WordPress website. I’m not even going to explain why this is a no-no. Use YouTube or Vimeo to host and copy and paste your video URL into your WordPress site to save on bandwidth.

Optimize The WordPress Database: This sounds scary but it can save you tons of space by removing trashed posts, revisions, unused tags, etc. You can use the plugin WP Sweep to help get rid of all that unnecessary information.

Now that you’re armed with information for the beginnings of a lightning fast WordPress website, go ahead and give a few of these a try. Don’t forget to test your speed before and after with Pingdom tools. Good Luck!

6 types of video to use in your online marketing

Facebook Algorithm

Guest Post by:

 Holly MortimerHolly Mortimer: The Socialvert
Social Media Strategies For Small Business

So by now, you’ve heard that Facebook has made one of the biggest algorithm changes they’ve almost EVER done. And by now, you’ve probably also heard a lot of fear mongering and are completely re-thinking your Facebook marketing strategy. It’s true, there are a ton of new changes about to be implemented and some of them are slowly rolling out, but it’s not something you need to panic about. You and your business need Facebook. It’s the single most effective and affordable ad platform out there, I truly believe that. So let’s dive into the changes and how you can roll into 2018, totally prepared and ready to blow the top off your business.

The News Feed

Facebook newsfeedThe News Feed is being overhauled. Well, actually, all of Facebook’s products are subject to this change, but they’re rolling it out over the News Feed first. Facebook has decided that there is too much branding and unwanted content in the News Feed. It’s over crowded, there’s no more room for anything and so, all of the unwanted stuff has to go. That means getting access to new clients is about to become a whole new ballgame.

The News Feed is now going to be a place of meaningful community building, not selling. There will definitely be selling still going on, it’s going to look a lot different and sometimes not so different. Vaguebooking enough for you? If you’re interested in paying for ad space, you can still gain access to this new market, but if you’re not, it’s going to become extremely difficult to organically gain ranking inside the new algorithm.

Here’s how you’re going to do it. Remember that meaningful communication thing? Yeah, it’s your only ticket into the News Feed without paying for ads. Facebook is now ranking relevance (each post is given a relevance score between 1 and 10 – this score determines your ability to reach the most users as possible) by the meaningful conversations going on in the comments section of each post. Meaningful conversations between users, not you, the brand and users, but your clients talking to your other clients. Facebook wants users to start talking to each other, and, wait for it, in long form. The longer the comment, the higher the ranking. No one word answers are going to cut it.

So, now your job as the business owner is going to be a two step process. First off, you need to decide whether spending your time trying to sort this out without advertising is worth it for your business. Really take a hard look at your efforts and your results, and you may come to the conclusion Facebook isn’t your platform anymore. (Of course, if you’ve read my work, you’ll know I’m a huge fan of Pinterest as your best alternative…just saying)

Okay, so you’ve decided this is where your people are, and you’re staying, come hell or algorithm changes. How in the world are you going to make this work. It’s going to take a shift of thinking about your posts. Here’s the other incredible kicker, video isn’t going to be favoured any longer. Watch for Facebook Watch to be the place to find video, not your News Feed. However, Facebook Live is still the most algorithm friendly post inside your News Feed. It’s time you figured out how to use it. (Completely shameless side note, I’ve got a quick little training on getting started with Facebook Live…and it’s only $25 y’all! Click here to grab it.)

Okay, so you’re developing a Facebook Live strategy that encourages conversation in your comments section between your fans, now what? Here’s my quick list of things to do and things not to do. For more information on any of these, catch me live inside my very own Facebook Group, The Socialvert Studio. You can request to join HERE.

Your Facebook Strategies

I’ve compiled a stock pile of other strategies to help you get aligned with the Book of Face’s new changes.

Whatever you do, do not implement a strategy that asks for comments. You’ll get demoted inside the algorithm no matter how great your post is. It’s called Engagement Baiting and it’s absolutely not allowed.

Choose your post topics very, very strategically. Come up with hot button topics inside your business, choose topics that encourage your audience to share their point of view, their ideas and their experiences. Of course, do this without directly asking them to. Insert giant sigh.

GIFs and Quote graphics are about to be a thing of the past. The emphasis is on your words. Of course, a great brand consistent image is a must to catch your client’s eye, but the algorithm is looking at your words and your engagement.

Post Likes no longer count for much of anything.

Hire a professional. It’s never been more important to get this right. However, make sure you vet your professional before hiring them. Make sure they are well aware of this algorithm change and have a strategy to combat it.

Get comfortable with the Ads Manager. Or, find a professional who’s both in tune with the new changes and understands the Ads Manager. It’ll pay off over and over again.

On the other hand, understand that ad spends are going to go up for a while.

Don’t think that switching all your posts to your personal page is going to trick the algorithm. The changes apply TO EVERYONE AND EVERYTHING. Personal pages are now subject to the same rules as Business Pages. As Groups. As Messenger. As Events. Doesn’t matter where you try to post, you’re going to have to get with their program.

Events and Groups are going to be great places to hang out as business owners. Why? Because inside these products (yes, they are separate products inside of the Facebook umbrella) there are a ton of meaningful conversations going on.

Get familiar with bots. Messenger is going to be your growth product, and being able to take the conversations offline with bots is going to be a huge advantage for your business.

Don’t panic, evolve. Understand everything you can about what’s happening and evolve. This could be a huge win for you if you can figure out a way to start conversations!

So, ditch the anxiety and figure out if your strategy is to stay on Facebook as a piece of your social media marketing strategy. Then, implement these changes and report back. I’d love to hear your success stories!

Are you looking for a group that offers answers to your digital marketing questions? Guidance, support and education? And you’re a woman in business? Check out Your Business Evolution, my new community for women who are running a side hustle or a full-time gig and looking for their tribe AND a ton of help improving their digital offerings. Incredible access to myself and your peers for a great price, along with webinars, group coaching and guest lectures!

About The Author:

 Holly MortimerHolly Mortimer: The Socialvert
Social Media Strategies For Small Business

With a background in sales and marketing, Holly has been advising businesses, both large and small for the past twenty-three years. She has been the Business Advisor In Residence for the Stratford Perth Centre for Business, offering start-ups and existing businesses guidance and training, specializing in the area of digital marketing. Holly has written and published six novels, and currently operates two businesses, The Socialvert and Mortimer’s Travels alongside her government post. She is an accomplished public speaker and enjoys furthering her passion for teaching teen and tween girls how to build a business and be the CEO of their own entrepreneurship dreams.

Blog for Business

Guest Post by:

 Holly MortimerHolly Mortimer: The Socialvert
Social Media Strategies For Small Business

Okay, so, I’m a writer and as a writer, I find, well, writing, easy. But I recognize not everyone shares my feelings on this. I meet with hundreds of clients a year and as I’m advising them on their digital growth strategy, inevitably, one of my first questions is, are you able to add a blog to your website? Blogs are the quickest and best way to grow your SEO and move up the Google algorithm rankings.

My answer is always, 100%, yes! Anyone can write a blog, and I’ve compiled some steps you can take to get started!

Start with an easy one. An About Me post. This type of post will serve a few different purposes. First off, it will start you on the relationship building side of things. It’s kind of a like a first date intro. You’re essentially dating the client, or well, the client’s dating you. Doesn’t matter, what matters is, just take five hundred words and introduce yourself. You can introduce your business, but people do business with people they know, like and trust, so, open up your personal side and see where that takes you.

Secondly, an About Me post will get you writing without having to recreate the wheel.

For your next post, think about the most asked question you get and expand upon your answer. Start with writing five hundred to one thousand words and see where it goes.For example, you’re in the plumbing and heating business (I have a client who’s implemented this strategy with this biz ) and you’re specialty is outdoor fireplaces and the question most people ask you is what type of stone is best to use when building this project. You can answer back inside of a blog post, and expand upon why its best and what other options are out there, supplemented with pictures of jobs you’ve done and insert stops along the blog to sign up for a free design consult. Done and done. Second blog post complete and you’ve offered a CTA.

My favourite method of uncovering what to blog about is to use Pinterest. Start to think of Pinterest as a search engine with beautiful images, NOT a social media platform and use it to type in common keywords your clients would be using to find a service or store such as the one you have. I’ve inserted a few pics to demonstrate how to use this tool.

The first example is what happens when I go back the outdoor fireplace project and simply type that into the search engine. The results offer up the next most popular keywords used. So you can see, ideas, diy and patio are the next most used keywords. Then it shows you other Pinterest accounts and boards that have the same interest.

Pinterest search keywords

The next example shows the results board and how many next click options there are. DIY, Backyards and Covered Decks are the next most popular searches.

pinterest search results

Now you’ll be able to clearly see that yes, outdoor fireplaces are frequently searched on, and that creating a Pinterest account is a clear winning idea, but blogging about all of these subjects is also a great idea. You can create a blog post on samples of backyards with outdoor fireplaces, a blog post on how to mount a tv above the fireplace, possibly different design features. Pinterest has already done all the work for you regarding the most popular needs for your potential clients.

My final tip to finding content to write about requires a little bit of work. You’ll need to set up a Pinterest business account and grow the account a little before you can access insights into popular posts, but once you’ve gotten that done, you’re off to the races!

Anywho, once you’ve mastered the Pinterest business feed, your analytics will show you the most popular posts that you’re pinning that aren’t yours. Then you can take that area of interest and write your own blog post on the subject, knowing that it’s something that a lot of pinners are looking for. If you’d rather skip the mini-intro webinar and head right into the full course on using Pinterest in just 10 minutes a day to grow your business, (It’s only 8 modules long) click the button below.

Okay, so those are my favourite ways to come up with content to blog about. My best advice is to just start. It’s so good for your SEO, for establishing yourself as an expert and for understanding the keywords that motivate your clients to buy. I’d love to check your blogs out once you start posting! Leave a link in the comments below!

About The Author:

 Holly MortimerHolly Mortimer: The Socialvert
Social Media Strategies For Small Business

With a background in sales and marketing, Holly has been advising businesses, both large and small for the past twenty-three years. She has been the Business Advisor In Residence for the Stratford Perth Centre for Business, offering start-ups and existing businesses guidance and training, specializing in the area of digital marketing. Holly has written and published six novels, and currently operates two businesses, The Socialvert and Mortimer’s Travels alongside her government post. She is an accomplished public speaker and enjoys furthering her passion for teaching teen and tween girls how to build a business and be the CEO of their own entrepreneurship dreams.

grow-email-list

Easily Grow Your Email List With These 6 Strategies:

Email marketing is at the top of every entrepreneur’s list these days. Building an engaged and loyal list is one of the most important parts of creating a successful marketing strategy. And for a lot of businesses and organizations, it’s also one of the most challenging.

An email list can be considered an extension of your right arm if you play your cards right. Yep! You can actually make money with a strong list that believes in your products or services. But, like anything else in business, it takes a bit of work and planning.

In this post, we’ll show you 6 easy ways to grow your email list of online BFF’s:

Gather Emails at Your Next Event: The easiest way to gather emails from local businesses is to hold a raffle at a networking event. Have everyone throw their business cards in a pile and draw the winner(s) the next day. Add all the the participants to a separate list in your e-marketing software (Constant Contact/MailChimp) and send out an e-blast announcing the winner. Always have an opt-out option just in case they’re not into it.

Put a “Sign Up” Form on Your Website: Duh! This is a no brainer but you’ll have to be creative with your messaging and Call-To-Action (CTA). Simply asking your audience to “sign up for my newsletter” may not attract as many interested people as “Sign up to receive freebies + exclusive access to our upcoming events”. Read more about Call To Action Best Practices in this post.

Create a Killer Opt-in: Speaking of freebies, offering a free gift in exchange for an email address is common practice now and it works! It builds relationships and it so easy to do. Find a topic your audience would gobble up and write some compelling information about it for people to download.

Example: A local brewery may want to suggest “The 5 Best Homebrew Kits” for all those beer lovers willing to give brewing a try at home. The brewery will establish themselves as an expert in their field, and you’ll have happy beer enthusiasts brewing at home and following your advice for next time. It’s a win win situation.

Follow this link to guide you on your way to writing a killer opt-in:

Use Facebook Paid Advertising: Now that you have a free gift to offer and a rock solid opt-in strategy, spend a few bucks advertising it on Facebook. Your budget can be small to reach a large audience so think about your goals and create an ad. or boost a post to get maximum exposure. **Be sure to have your Facebook Pixel on your website before doing this. You’ll want to track all traffic and those who chose to opt-in and those who chose not to. More on that in another blog post…

Join an Online Group Specific to Your Business: Facebook is an excellent source for this! There are groups for entrepreneurs in all business fields. These groups will act as a sounding board for your ideas but also will help with list building by offering and sharing your services with the group. You can test out your freebie, ask questions about your target audiences, and EASILY engage with other business owners that are interested in collaborating and using your services.

Host a Co-Marketing Offer: Chances are you collaborate or partner with other local businesses, especially around the holidays. Host an event (online or in-person) to draw interest from both audiences. Cross promotion always works but don’t forget to incorporate some on the ideas we’ve listed above – raffle, freebies, social media.

6 types of video to use in your online marketing

benefits of blogging

You’re too busy. You have kids. You have deadlines. You’re exhausted. This is the reality of owning and operating a small business. We get it! To the overworked entrepreneur, blogging may be just ‘One More Thing’ to add to the ever-growing list. But it shouldn’t be. Here are a few EXCELLENT reasons why you – the overworked, exhausted, small business owner – should be using blogging as a marketing tactic.

It drives traffic to your website.

Want more visitors to your website? Yeah, we thought so! Every time you write a blog post, it’s one more indexed page on your website, which means it’s one more opportunity for you to show up in search engines and drive traffic to your website in organic search.

Blogging also helps you get discovered via social media. Every time you write a blog post, you’re creating content that people can share on social networks — Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, Pinterest — which helps expose your business to a new audience that may not know you yet.

This reason should be enough to convince you. But there’s more : )

It helps convert traffic into leads.

Now that you’ve captured their attention, you can sell them your product or service.

Just like every blog post you write is another indexed page, each post is a new opportunity to generate new leads. The way this works is really simple – just add a lead-generating call-to-action to every blog post. Here’s how the process works:

Visitor comes to website.

Visitor sees call-to-action for a free offer.

Visitor clicks call-to-action and gets to a landing page, which contains a form for them to fill in with their information.

Visitor fills out form, submits information, and receives the free offer.

YAY! You now have a potential new customer/client. Read more about successful lead generation strategies *HERE*.

It helps to establish you as an expert in your field.

If you’re consistently creating content that’s helpful for your target customer, it will help establish you as an authority in their eyes. This is a great method for Sales and Service professionals.

Think about it, if prospects find answers to their common questions via blog posts written by you, they’re much more likely to come into the sales process trusting what you have to say because you’ve helped them in the past — even before they were interested in purchasing anything from you. Boom!

*Information borrowed from our favorite source, HubSpot.

Increase Your Website Traffic, Tap House Media