5 Ways to Generate Leads on Instagram

Do I Really Need Instagram?

Before we jump head first into generating leads on Instagram, let’s first talk about why Instagram matters.

“There’s already a ton of social media networks, why do we need one more?” – I hear this quite frequently. I’m sure you do as well or maybe have even said it. Heck, I may have said it a couple of times myself.

As someone who is approaching 30, I just don’t see the point in certain social media networks younger people are using like Snapchat. I used to think this way about Instagram as well.

You may have heard things about Instagram such as :

  • It’s only for the younger crowd
  • I just don’t have the time to look into it

By the end of this post, I hope to prove wrong the doubters and show you through data and examples, that not only is Instagram worth your time, it is 100% needed in your business / marketing efforts at the time of this writing into the future.


NEWS: Instagram just announced they are now allowing you to post 60 second videos. This is long enough for you to get out a full marketing message and get leads coming to you through your video marketing efforts.


Why Instagram Matters

Now, let’s take a look at some data at why Instagram is not just for the younger audiences, how your ads can work, and how it is absolutely worth your time.

Let’s first talk about the massive upsides of Instagram Marketing:

#1 : Brand Interaction – Instagram boasts the highest level of brand interaction out of every major social media platform such as Facebook, Twitter, and Google+ as seen in the image below. The 1.53% is Instagram there in the bold.

Instagram has a 10x+ higher rate of engagement and interaction than other social media platforms meaning your marketing efforts can go 10 times as far.

This alone should convince you to get more into Instagram Marketing for your business.

brandinteraction#2 : Wide Audience – Instagram is continuing to grow leaps and bounds among many different age groups. Not just under age 28. Let’s take a look at some recent data.

eMarketer-US-Instagram-User-Estimates-by-Age-2013-2019-Mar2015

5 Ways to Generate Leads on Instagram

1. Use Hashtags

This may be the most obvious way to generate leads on Instagram. You can post up to 30 hashtags per post, and the more you post and use hashtags, the more leads you will get simply.

If you use your limit on Hashtags (30), you should see 30 – 100 likes per post and a small amount of new followers. Not the greatest results, but its 100% FREE.

Here’s a list of the top Hashtags you can use for the most likes:

hashtags

Here’s some examples of my own Instagram Account:

samcartREPOSTexample sample2

2. Post Daily (Twice Per Day)

Regularity is the key to any type of content or social media marketing. Instagram is no different. However, you can’t schedule content out right now, so its all manual unless you have special software like InstaMate. (Click for my full review – Coming Soon)

I suggest that you post first thing in the morning and around 5 pm. People are most active on their mobile phones before and after work. So before 9 am and after 5 pm. That’s a fact. So, post according to your main audience. For me, its usually 8 am EST and 5 pm EST since most of my audience is in the US and Canada and most of them are in EST.

3. Post Content That Makes Sense

All of your Instagram posts should flow like a timeline or a story. You shouldn’t have random things next to each other. Don’t put a picture of your dog next to a quote of Steve Jobs. Make it a story that people can follow who are new to seeing your profile.

Post content that makes sense for the time of year and the day. People will only spend a second as they glance at your posts, so make it relate to world events, trending stories, and what your target audience is interested in. Look to get ahead of trends and look for posts that can create viral growth that people will share.

4. Networking & Partnering

Its important to be active and connect with like-minded people, prospects, and customers. You can tag them in posts, message them, like and follow their profiles, and have real conversations. 

You can find great partners who will be willing to promote your profile for you. You just have to ask. Usually it goes both ways. You promote theirs as well.  You can also find profiles with tons of followers that are willing to sell you a post on their profile to drive thousands of new views to your profile. Use other people’s followers to your advantage! This may be the fastest way to grow especially if you are doing this frequently.

5. Promote a Contest / Giveaway

Since Instagram has the highest engagement, it naturally is the best place to run a contest or giveaway of your product or service or perhaps something else… like a NEW CAR! Just kidding, Oprah did that one already. (And it worked wonders for her brand with tons of free publicity.)

I recommend doing this once you built up enough followers to make it really work otherwise, you may waste your time. You don’t even need any special software or anything, just post your contest, tell them what they need to do to apply to win (such as tag 5 friends or start a hashtag trend or promote your profile on theirs, etc.) Then, you run that until you feel ready to give away the prize perhaps in a couple days or a week’s time. This should create a huge influx of new followers and excitement. Plus, your engagement of your followers will likely increase 10x at least for that week and even longer if you have great content to share and excited followers.

Watch My Full Video Insights

Recommended Tools for Instagram Marketing

Web Software:

Instamate – Create, Post, Schedule Your Instagram Accounts

Mobile Apps:

WordSwag – Create Quotes, Watermarks, and Post
Repost – Repost other Instagram Posts (Like a retweet)

Check out our full review of Instamate here:

Get Involved

Share with me your Instagram account and your results in the comments below and make sure to follow us at our Instagram : @RyanShaw.Me

What You Can Learn from Twitter’s Audience Insights

Twitter has taken another note from Facebook, mimicking Facebook’s Audience Insights and releasing their own.

Twitter’s Audience Insights is just as valuable as Facebook’s, and provides a lot of great information about how makes up your audience and how to best connect with them.

At the moment, we don’t really recommend Twitter Ads in general (depending on your specific audience and niche, this can be different for you) due to high costs.

That being said, using Twitter itself as a free marketing platform is a great way to promote and build your brand and your business (they’ve even made more changes to help with this), connecting with new audience members. Twitter’s Audience Insights can help you do just that.

How to Access Twitter’s Audience Insights

To access Twitter’s Audience Insights, you’ll click on your picture in the top right corner. This will open a drop-down menu, and you’ll click on “Analytics.”

twitter's audience insights

Once in the analytics section, you’ll click on “Followers,” which can be found in the top left corner of the Page.

twitter's audience insightsThis takes you directly to your Audience Insights page, and you can choose to view Twitter’s Audience, your audience, or a comparison of the two.

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What Twitter’s Audience Insights Tells You

Twitter’s Audience Insights can tell you a lot.

They break down the your audience into different categories, showing you what percentage of your audience fits into which category. They do this using information they glean from users’ onsite usage, as well as off-site information provided by third party company Datalogix.

The overview at the top of the page will tell you what their most common interest is, what type of lifestyle they follow, what type of buying style is most common, and their most commonly used wireless carrier.

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On the rest of the page, Twitter gives you the information about various statistics on your audience, including:

  • Interests: Twitter will show you the most common interests shared by your followers, and what percentage of your followers are categorized into having those interests.

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  • Occupation: Twitter shows you what percentages of your audience fits into different categories of occupations and types of jobs.

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  • Consumer buying style: This seemingly erratic category breaks down users into how they purchase, having everything from “value conscious” to “vegetarian.” Will all of these be relevant to every business? Of course not. But knowing if your customers are “value conscious” or prioritize “premium brands” can be good intel.

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  • Wireless carrier: Self-explanatory, this graph will show you what percentage of your audience uses what wireless carriers.
  • Household income: This section shows how much your average audience member fits into a household income category.

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  • Net Worth: Again, self-explanatory, this category shows you which net worth categories your different audience members fit into.

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  • Marital Status: Not as detailed as Facebook’s relationship statistics, this just shows what percentage of your audience is married, and what percentage is not.
  • Education: This shows the highest level of education completed, and what percentages of your audience have graduated from different levels of school.

How You Can Use Twitter’s Audience Insights

Just like with Facebook’s Audience Insights, this information can tell you a lot.

Sometimes the people you think will be your target audience aren’t really the ones who make up the audience that you actually have.

This can tell you two things—one is that you may somehow have missed your target audience and aren’t appealing to them. The other thing it can tell you is how to create content that is more geared to the audience you currently have.

You can adjust your marketing campaigns accordingly. For example, if you find that your audience prioritizes value and tends to be thriftier than what you previously thought, you can focus more on marketing strategies to take advantage of this information. For example, you can host contests with freebies, or advertise sales.

Similarly, if you find that a large portion of your audience has an interest in common that doesn’t directly relate to you, you can still use this interest to create engaging content. For example, if you see that a large percentage of your users like comedy, you can share more humorous content on your profile, and make sure to incorporate more humor into the content you create off of Twitter, too.

Final Thoughts

Twitter’s Audience Insights is a great tool, and it’s a good thing they’ve taken another note from Facebook to create it. I also want to note that their other analytics tools can be useful summaries, but their Audience Insights in my opinion is one of the strongest analytics tools that they offer.

To see more about different advertising options with Twitter, you can learn about Twitter’s Website Cards and how Twitter Ads compare to Facebook Ads.

Are you using Twitter’s Audience Insights? Has it helped you learn anything about how to better connect with your audience? Share your thoughts in a comment below!

Put Your FanPages on Autopilot with FB Auto Post Pro

There is a lot of money that can be made with Facebook marketing on your Fan Pages. Like all other money-making endeavors, however, marketing on Facebook requires a lot of time, creativity, hard work, and often money to go into creating and scheduling high quality, monetized content that will lead to profits.

Fortunately, marketers have started to find a way to make the process less time consuming, much easier, and much cheaper. Incredible new software FB Auto Post Pro was created to improve and speed up this process, and we’re excited to say that it does.

What is FB Auto Post Pro?

FB Auto Post Pro is powerful new software that automates the content on your Facebook Page for you. It does automates the process of Facebook marketing in several ways.

The first is that it allows you to schedule when you want your content to be posted. You can create multiple lists of content and set them to a schedule all at once. This keeps you from having to remember to post a few times a day, and makes sure nothing slips between the cracks.

As for the content, you have a few options. You can generate and create the content yourself, as most advertisers currently do. You can also import content from your computer, say if someone else created it for you. You can also have FB Auto Post Pro utilize one of its best features, and have it find unique, monetized, viral, and relevant content for you to post.

fb auto post pro review

With FB Auto Post Pro’s incredible search engine, you can search for content that you can use to post to your Page. It just takes a few quick clicks, and you’ve got high value, monetized content that you can set to post on a schedule. The whole process of content creation, scheduling, and posting happens in the blink of an eye.

fb auto post pro

It takes ten minutes to set up the software, link it to your Facebook Page, and find content to post.

Why This Software Matters

We all know that there is a lot of potential for money to be made through Facebook marketing. This isn’t even counting Facebook Ads; we’re talking about the money-making potential of content you’re posting for free on your Fan Pages.

Successful Facebook marketing is all about that monetized, relevant, high quality content. FB Auto Post Pro now locates that content for you, so you have a system making money almost entirely on autopilot without needing you to put effort into it.

fb auto post pro

This is good for all businesses. Any time you’re crossing a task (especially a time consuming and potentially expensive one) off your list, that frees up more time for you to focus on the parts of your business that you really love (or more time with the family), and you can devote your efforts to making more money elsewhere.

Especially if you take part in any kind of affiliate marketing, this software can change your marketing approach. Can you imagine running multiple fanpages easily and without added effort, while still making a profit on each of them? Now you can.

How It Saves You Money

This statement is true for everyone: what saves you time saves you money. FB Auto Post Pro can save you both.

If you’re currently creating content yourself, you’re undoubtably spending a lot of time doing so. If you’re paying someone else to do it, that’s a lot of time and money. Paying someone to manage your Pages can cost anywhere from a few hundred dollars a month to a few thousand.

FB Auto Post Pro costs only a $47 one-time-fee. It saves you money while making you money. Win-win.

How You Can Sign Up

FB Auto Post Pro is compatible with both PCs and Macs, and works on most major internet browsers. It will be launching on April 6th, right around the corner.

In the future, FB Auto Post Pro will cost a monthly fee of $97 per month. Right now, as a pre-launch and opening special, there’s only monthly of $47, so you want to make sure you secure your place in our launch pricing quickly.

In addition to this low, one-time price, the purchase of FB Auto Post Pro also comes free with FB Pixel Pro (priced at $47) and Social Redirect Pro (priced at $67), both of which will only improve your Facebook marketing campaigns even further. You can also pay to upgrade to FB Auto Connect Pro.

If you’re not 100% satisfied with FB Auto Post Pro, you can get a hassle-free, no-questions-asked, full refund within 60 days of purchase.

To learn more and sign up for FB Auto Post Pro, you can get more information here.

 

Facebook Killing Fake Likes With a Passion

We, like almost every other marketing expert out there, have said for a long time that fake likes on Facebook doesn’t do any good for your campaign, and that it can in fact harm it.

Facebook is taking the issue seriously and has started killing fake likes like it’s their passion. We’ve seen reports of Pages having these fake likes slashed in great numbers, and it’s nice to see that Facebook is taking action on something they believe is hurting their system (which they continually do with updates to their algorithms and rules).

What Defines “Fake Likes”

There are a ton of sites online that offer the opportunity to buy likes essentially in bulk. You pay $50 and you get 5,000 likes, for example. To find these sites, all you have to do is Google them, and a ton will pop up in your search results.

The problem with buying fake likes is that they’re just that—fake. Most of the profiles aren’t even real people; they are computer-generated, and the profiles will never have any purpose or interaction on Facebook except to look pretty and like a whole bunch of Pages.

Even on the 1% change that these likes are actually real people, the like you’ve bought from them is still an empty, fake like. Their accounts were likely hacked in order to get that like. Even if they weren’t these people likely aren’t at all interested in your, your business, or your content, and they’ll never interact or read your content. All they are is a number on your page, but it’s one that ultimately hurts you, but we’ll get to that in a minute.

What Motivated Facebook to Kill Fake Likes

Despite the warnings and cautions of how bad fake likes can actually be for your Page, it seems that a lot of businesses either weren’t listening or weren’t paying attention.

Back in October of last year, Facebook admitted that it had a pretty big fake likes problem. And by pretty big, we mean huge.

Facebook has been working hard to make sure that the only likes on a businesses’ Page—and on a user’s profile—are relevant ones. They want the user to like the Page only if the content actually interests them and is something they want to see frequently (or at least occasionally) in their Newsfeeds.

Facebook also uses user engagement as one of the main factors in determining the quality of a Page. If your user engagement is comparatively low but your likes are crazy high, you’re looking at a reduction in priority for appearing in the Newsfeed. This can keep great Pages from having their content shown, and Facebook doesn’t want that either.

Facebook is killing fake likes by flagging and deleting accounts that have gone on a spree of liking Page after Page without much other interaction and activity on their profiles.

Fake likes can be difficult to detect, as there are “fake like” companies that actually pay real works to create accounts and manually make the likes, which makes it more difficult for Facebook to detect them. Having the system flag accounts with mass amounts of likes over a short period of time is how they’ll catch them.

Why Facebook Killing Fake Likes is Good

Facebook killing the fake likes will be a good thing overall, including for those Pages who have purchased the fake likes.

The biggest problem for fake likes is that it has a horrible effect on your Page, particularly in your reach.

Facebook uses an algorithm called EdgeRank that helps them decide and prioritize what content users most want to see.

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One of the most heavily weighed factors in EdgeRank is user engagement—the amount of user engagement on posts and content. If you have a ton of likes but little to no engagement, you’re ranking is going to drop. What this means is that even the users who do want to see your content are less likely to see it.

Let’s do the math. If you have 10,000 fake likes and 1,000 real ones, and your content is only being shown to 1,000 people, how much do you want to bet only a small portion of your real fans will see your content? Once your EdgeRank ranking drops, this number drops even more.

At the end of the day, having a ton of fake likes can end up dropping your rank, keeping the users who want to see and engage with your content from seeing it. Since one of the biggest advantages to having a Page is to show users free content in the form of posts, having a ton of free likes just to make your Page look popular was never worth the payoff.

It’s all about connecting most with the users that matter– Facebook targeting fake likes will help businesses do that.

The Potential Downside

This is good news overall and once everything settles down it will likely all be for the better (I would be astonished if it wasn’t), but I’ve already seen glimpses of a current problem with execution.

I’ve seen a few businesses and marketers that are claiming that due to their Pages genuine popularity, they garner a large to massive number of likes every week or month, and Facebook has slashed their numbers down to next to nothing compared to what it was.

Part of this may come as collateral damage. While these fake profiles are being fleshed out, they might have a mass spree of liking other Pages to make some of their paid likes to seem realistic. These Pages who never purchased likes—but ended up in the crosshairs—will see the effects of this issue.

If you see that this is happening to your Page and you haven’t purchased fake likes, the only thing to do as of now would be to contact Facebook directly and as why and try to get everything sorted out as soon as possible.

Conclusion

Overall, this is going to level the playing field, and hopefully too many Pages won’t get hit with the collateral damage of having real, actual likes be taken away or reduced mistakenly as a few marketers have claimed to have already experienced.

It will be good in the long run even the for the businesses who stubbornly insist on making their page seem “fuller” and more popular with a lot of likes, not realizing the detrimental effect buying likes actually has on Facebook.

To see more about how to be successful with Facebook Ads, make sure you take a look at our FB Ads Formula to increase ROIs.

FB Ads Formula; Facebook killing fake likes
Our FB Ads Formula has helped businesses and entrepreneurs go so far as to quadruple their ROIs.

What do you think of this news? Has your Page taken any accidental hits? Leave a comment and let us know!

Facebook’s Ad Approval Process and How it Works

Facebook's ad approval process

We get asked a lot of questions about Facebook’s Ad approval process, likely   because it seems there aren’t many reliable answers to be found. Even those experienced in running Ad campaigns sometimes face confusion when the approval process doesn’t go quite as it had in the past for them.

Some of the most frequently asked questions include how long it takes to get your ad approved, and what happens if its been “x amount of time” since submission? Is it an algorithm that approves or denies my ad, or a person? How will I know once it has been approved?

To see the answers to these, read on, my fellow Facebook marketers. Our questions are about to be answered.

How Long Does it Take To Get Your Facebook Ad Approved?

There is no exact answer for this. Sorry, I know that’s not what any of us want to hear when asking a question. But it’s true.

The most accurate answer for this question that we have is this: it depends on how busy the ad approval team is at that moment. It’s all dictated by your timing, and varies based on the time of day, the time of week, and how many ads are in line before you waiting to get approved.

The majority of submitted ads come back quickly, often within 24 hours. Most are approved within the day. Some claim to get their ads approved almost instantaneously, within ten minutes.

Weekdays and mornings seem to be among the best times to submit ads for quick approval. The Facebook team works between 8:00 am and 8:00 pm PST, so keep in mind that any ads submitted outside those hours will automatically add to your wait time, at least until the morning.

If you are still waiting on an ad to get approved and it’s been at least three days, while they could just be busy and it does sometimes take them that long, they could also have a bug in the system. At that point, deleting the ad, recreating it, and resubmitting it could be the way to go.

Who Approves the Ads?

As you may have noted from above, Facebook doesn’t have an algorithm or some sort of computer software that runs rampant on the queue of ads, approving and denying them. This is part of the reason the process can take a little while.

Actual employees, highly trained on the Ads guidelines, are the ones who go through your ads to approve them. Their entire job is to review ads, so there’s no getting anything by them.

While having employees approve ads can mean that the process can be subjective and open to human error, the chances of that happening if your ad has been rejected is unlikely. This is another question we’ve been asked.

While yes, human error does happen (nobody is perfect, we all know that), it doesn’t necessarily happen often here. The people reviewing these ads know the regulations inside and out, and reviewing ads is the entirety of their job description, not only something they do every other Tuesday and Thursday. Resubmitting a rejected ad while ignoring its corrections could potentially get it approved through someone else, but it is unlikely and not a good idea to try as you’ll likely get the same answer.

I’ve seen several sites suggest not only resubmitting an ad once, but multiple times until it gets approved. If you really believe a mistake was made, I understand resubmitting without changes just to see (though contacting Facebook for more information may be more useful). Resubmitting the same ad over and over, however, is a waste of their time and yours. Fix what they suggested needed fixing, and you’ll be good to go.

How Facebook’s Ad Approval Process Works

It’s actually a very simple, basic system. You submit your ad, it waits to be reviewed, it gets reviewed, and it is either denied or approved. Not a lot of explanation is required, but since we’ve gotten a lot of questions (and again, there’s few resources out there elaborating), here it is.

Once you submit your ad, it immediately goes into a queue of other ads waiting to be approved. This is what delays your ad from coming back to you immediately, not the actual review itself.

Those evaluating your ad simply make sure it matches up with Facebook’s ad guidelines. They aren’t trying to trip you up. It’s a simple, quick process, which is why you sometimes see ads come back almost instantaneously when you aren’t waiting.

While you’re waiting for your ad to be approved, you’ll see a “pending review” status in your ads manager. You’ll be notified the second your ad is either approved or rejected. If it has been approved, you can start running it immediately. If it hasn’t, you’ll get an explanation why not, and you can contact Facebook for more information if you are confused about the reasoning. You can then edit and resubmit your ad in hopes for approval in the next go around.

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See, I told you it was simple!

How to Make Facebook’s Ad Approval Process Go Quickly

If you’re in a hurry and want your ad to get approved as quickly as possible, there’s a few things you can do to speed up the process. Sometimes they’re just backed up and it will take a little while. Sometimes it can’t be sped up. But, sometimes there’s a few practices you can utilize to try to get your ad approved faster.

  • Make sure you’re following the guidelines. I know, it sounds redundant, but a lot of ads don’t get approved because they aren’t following Facebook’s rules for advertising with them. To see how to never get your ad rejected again, you can view our blog post here.
Facebook's ad approval process
Facebook gives examples of what is and is not allowed in their guidelines.
  • Take a look at your domain name. Domain names are sometimes marked as spam, and Facebook has a quality score. Having your domain name marked as spam can keep your ads from coming back quickly, or even from getting approved.
  • If your ad is time sensitive (for example, an ad detailing a 48 hour promotion), you can either create your ads in advance and temporarily turn off the campaign, or you can create an ad that is scheduled to start at some point in the future. You can find instructions on how to do this here. While you can’t rush their approval, you can use these options to make sure your ad runs when you want—assuming you get it approved ahead of time.
  • Test your landing page carefully. Sometimes it’s better to have your ad take users to a landing page not on Facebook. Facebook has specific guidelines about landing pages, too, and the ads that are connected to them. Having a landing page they don’t approve of won’t get your ad approved quickly or at all.
  • If your ad has a new image that isn’t immediately recognizable, it tends to take longer. When you don’t use one of the many images available to you through Facebook for your ad, it can take longer for your ad to get approved, especially if the reviewer has to spend some time figuring out what they’re looking at and how it relates to your ad.

Multiply Your Leads with LeadPages

Converting leads into clients is difficult enough, especially when the pressure is on to get the sale. What comes before that can be just as difficult. Finding good, reliable leads can be just as difficult as turning them into clients, and it’s the first step in a long process. LeadPages is a software company that can you generate leads swiftly and efficiently.

LeadPages

LeadPages has multiplied our number of leads while we’ve been using their services. We have gotten over 10,000 e-mail subscribers while using their forms, so we can happily vouch for the success rate of their product and say definitively that it does indeed work.

Due to our big success with this software, we want to share the wealth of knowledge so that you can start getting those leads, too.

6 Basic Principles of LeadPages

LeadPages operates on the “95% and 5%” rule. Studies have found that 95% of sales, leads, and conversions come from about 5% of the web pages on any given site. They have found this to be true with their own business and with many businesses of their customers.

LeadPages was developed to help you create those 5% of pages. They came up with 6 basic principles that they wanted their pages to have in order to make lead generation and landing page creation easier than ever.

  1. Ability to create mobile responsive web pages quickly. They aim to do this in just a mere matter of minutes, with the site able to be published on any server that offers the option of publishing a webpage on. The idea is to point, click, and be done.
  2. Having a large variety of landing pages available for any situation. They have pages available for lead generation, webinars, increasing subscribers, advertising ebooks, and so much more. These pages are all easy to publish, only requiring a few clicks. They are just as easy for clients to download.
  3. Ability to know which landing page templates are more successful with conversions across platforms. LeadPages gives you the ability to sort all templates based on conversion rates.
  4. Make any link on any website an opt-in box. We use this feature a great deal, and it has provided us with a long list of leads and interested clients. You can make any link on any website trigger an opt-in box. You can do this anywhere that you can post an html link.
  5. Provide incredible analytics that are easily accessible. LeadPages cuts out a lot of the tedious, laborious steps that often come with conversion and website tracking. LeadPages takes care of tracking conversion rates and assembles all of the information for you in an easy-to-read format, and you can use their analytics in conjunction with any other conversion tracking/analytics tool you choose (such as KISSmetrics or Google Analytics).

    LeadPages analysis
    An example of LeadPages’ Analytics
  6. Provide Easy Split Testing. We know what a pain split testing can be, but that it’s an important practice in order to continue to optimize pages for conversions. LeadPages changes that, offering a split testing tool that only takes 5 clicks to set up.Screen Shot 2014-08-21 at 12.55.57 PM

Some of LeadPages’s Best Features

Aside from the 70+ templates for landing pages, LeadPages has a lot of other really great features. You can create and deploy high converting landing pages in just a few minutes, sure, but they offer a lot more than that. Some unique features include:

  • You can do anything without touching so much as a line of code. For people like me, that’s a blessing.

LeadPages allows you to modify pre-made templates easily, without needing codes.

This:

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Easily turns into this:

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  • Quick and easy WordPress integration.
  • Built-in SEO options.
  • Complete hosting of pages. Any landing page you make with them, they can host on their server.
  • Getting more sales with a 404 Error Page. You can actually turn an error page into one of your highest converting pages on your site.
LeadPages template
404 Error Page Through LeadPages
  • Easy upgrades with page regeneration.
  • Easily duplicate and split test landing pages.
  • All templates are 100% mobile friendly.
  • Toy can boost opt-in rates with two step opt-in forms, which we use all the time.
  • You can build a bigger client list with exit pop-ups.
  • You can use an unlimited number of domains.
  • You can easily integrate your landing page on WordPress or as a tab on Facebook.

For a full list of everything that they can do (a list that continues to grow as they develop new software inspired by new and innovating ideas), you can click here.

Our Success with LeadPages

I mentioned before that we’ve gotten 10,000+ new leads and e-mail subscribers with forms and software from LeadPages. 10,000 subscribers is a massive number, big enough that it can directly affect success and profit in a good way.

We’ve used their template to change our 404 Error page into another chance for conversions (and gotten those conversions).

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We’ve used templates to create landing pages designed specially to entice users to sign up—and attend- webinars.

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We’ve seen perhaps our biggest success with LeadPages come from our opt-in forms, which we use heavily on our main site. We’ve had massive increases in subscribers, and later conversions, due to the leads generated with LeadPages software.

You can see in the graph below an increase in subscribers within the first six months we utilized LeadPages (starting in May of 2013).

LeadPages success
May-December 2013

We started using LeadPages a few months after starting our site, and the software helped us gain massive increases.

Screen Shot 2014-08-21 at 2.26.16 PMBy December, we had hit 4,096 email subscriber sign-ups within six months (a number which accounts for unsubscribing), seeing our leads multiply just from LeadPages.

Conclusion

We highly recommend using LeadPages to create landing pages and to generate leads. We did it, and we love it. And for the record, no, we were not asked to write or post this article reviewing the software; we genuinely think LeadPages is a great product that can help your business grow as much as it helped us. You can click here to get started and to see if LeadPages is the right fit for you.

Should You Buy Likes on Facebook?

Should I Buy Facebook LikesWe’ve been asked this one question a lot recently. Should I buy likes on Facebook? The answer to this question is very easy and is more absolute than almost every other aspect of online marketing.

That answer is no. No. Don’t do it. Do not buy Facebook likes.

We wholeheartedly recommend steering clear of buying likes on Facebook, and we have good reason. There are a lot of great ways to increase likes and engagement on Facebook, but buying likes is not one of them.

What “Buying Likes on Facebook” Means

Buying likes does not mean using the ad system. I’ve seen some confusion over this, where page owners think that “buying likes” means using the Facebook Ad objective to increase page likes. While technically you are paying for those potential new likes, “buying likes” is an entirely different practice.

When someone talks about buying likes, the ad system is not involved. There are third party companies that will actually sell you likes on your page. Sites like “buyfansmedia.com” promise 2,000 likes for just $17. And there’s a long list of those sites, all you have to do is Google them.

To those who are new to the social media world, this might seem like a great bargain and a fantastic way to kick start your Page and campaign. It is not.

Most of these sites do deliver in the fact that they give you the product they’ve promised. They do get you those 2,000 fans on Facebook.

Those fans, however, are not necessarily the ones that you want. These sites, after all, offer no guarantee that these fans will be in your target audience. The majority of these sites actually use fake profiles—they aren’t real people, even if the sites promise that they are. They are just numbers to add to your page.

Why People Decide to Buy Likes on Facebook

When businesses are just getting started on social media, Facebook can seem daunting. You’re patient for a little while, and then it becomes discouraging when no one but your mother is liking any of your posts.

Businesses most often buy likes in attempt to bolster the reputation of their page. They want it to look popular.

It’s easy to think that having a massive amount of likes will give both your page and your business a nice, hefty side of credibility. After all, how would a substandard company get over 2,000 likes after just joining Facebook a few months ago?!

Why You Shouldn’t Buy Likes

Unless you just want to look really, really popular (hey there, high school!), you’re wasting money. That’s the simple reason why you shouldn’t buy likes.

Purchased likes will not become customers (especially since they’re likely not real people), and it is highly unlikely they will help you get new customers. Buying likes is a throwing away money, not an investment.

You aren’t gaining clients relevant to your business. Sure, your numbers have gone up, but in the reality of the Facebook world, that doesn’t necessarily mean as much as you might first think.

Sure, you want a lot of fans on your page, but they aren’t doing you much good if they aren’t active fans. They won’t interact with your posts or share your content, two of the most important things fans on any social media site can do. Users coming to your site are likely to notice that it’s pretty vacant and without a lot of activity despite a large fan base.

It’s much more important to build your brand and your Page on Facebook instead of a pointless false number. You want to get to interact with people who are interested in your business, not to spew out content no one but you will either care about see.

Even if these likes happen to be real people (which they very rarely are), they are still incredibly unlikely to interact with you on your page. The reason why is simple.

Just because you got an added 2,000 likes on your page doesn’t mean a single one of those new fans are actually interested in your field of business or product at all. They don’t care about what you have to say or the content that you’re posting.

Those likes really are just a number, and they’re not beneficial ones, especially considering that your actual likes may be drowned out by fake ones, and your true followers aren’t the ones who see any of your promoted posts.

Facebook actually developed an algorithm called EdgeRank to help them decide if your content is what certain users will most want to see. Edgerank takes user engagement heavily into consideration.

EdgeRank buying likes
EdgeRank

If you have a lot of fans but very little engagement, your ranking on EdgeRank goes down, causing you to run the risk of your content not showing up even to the few real fans that you do have. Your social media campaign efforts—and the money you spent buying likes—would have meant very little when it came time for results.

The Right Way to Get Likes on Facebook

There are other great, white hat ways to increase likes on Facebook—the kind that will actually be beneficial to your business. Spoiler alert—none of them include purchasing likes outright.

Sure, a lot of these methods will take a lot more time and effort. That old saying that nothing good ever came easy? It’s true on social media as well, but the important thing is that those likes will come with the right strategies and a healthy dose of tenacity in place.

So what are they?

  • Use the Ad System. Yes, this is still in a way paying for likes on Facebook, but this is a good, honest strategy that will help you get relevant likes. There is an objective in the Facebook Ad system that revolves entirely around getting more likes for your page. You get to target only the users you think would be in your ideal target audience, and you will could even be pay less than buying irrelevant likes outright.

You can learn directly from us on how we build out our fan pages with a ton of targeted likes that convert into sales within our FB Ads Formula.

Buying likes on Facebook
You can choose “Page Likes” as an objective for your Ads.
  • Invite users to like your site. Invite those users who you think would actually want to see your content- invite those who are relevant to your business. If you’re looking for quick, easy numbers, invite all your friends from your own Facebook page. Even if they aren’t necessarily your ideal target audience, they will still be more likely to interact with you and share your content, spreading good word of mouth about your business.

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  • Promote your page cross-platform. Have a link to your Facebook page on your main website, on your blog, on your Twitter, on your YouTube. Have it everywhere, and advertise it in store if relevant. The more people see it, the more they are to actually visit it and like it, especially since users already on your site are likely interested in your product and what you have to say. They’re definitely more likely to be interested than people who don’t exist.

Don't buy likes on Facebook

  • Create contests or offers. Both contests and offers can be set up so that users are encouraged or required to like your page before participating in them. Users are more likely to interact with your posts when they feel there is something directly beneficial for them to do so. You can even use promoted posts through Facebook’s Ad tool to help these exciting opportunities reach new users.
  • Have great content. It sounds easier than it is sometimes to continually create great content that stands out, and yes, it does take a long time to build those organic likes just with great content alone. But it has been done and can be done by you. Consistency in both quality and frequency of content is important, and overtime you’ll reap the sweet, sweet fruits of your labor.

 

 

Make Our Content Marketing Strategy Work For You

How You Can Replicate Our Success
Screen Shot 2014-07-29 at 6.50.58 AMAs of this past year, we’ve been focusing more and more on content marketing and our content marketing strategy.

This goes without saying that we rethought and developed a new, strong content marketing strategy and made sure it was the very best it could be.

For a video overview, you can watch the video below.

Content marketing is relatively free, unless you’re paying a copywriter and/or website developer. Even so, it’s a good investment, as it can establish your expertise in the field and generate new leads and sales.

Today we want to share what’s been working for us—and it has, since we’ve seen big increases in post shares and recently SEO traffic—so that you can make it work for you, too.

Blog Posts Twice Per Week

Twice a week we add blog posts to our site, most of which are 2000+ words and all of which are keyword dense. This is one of our most important tactics when it comes to our content marketing strategy.Screen Shot 2014-07-29 at 6.52.53 AM Some of our posts are about new developments and updates in the online marketing world, and some are written to help explain areas we get a lot of questions on (such as our Beginner’s Guide to Facebook Ads and how to never have your ads rejected).

The most important aspect when choosing a topic for your blog is to write something that will be useful to your clients.

When I wrote content for a jewelry store, I didn’t write about how pretty the jewelry was—I wrote blog posts educating customers about different mountings, gemstones, repair needs, and watch components.

Useful information is what will keep people coming back and establishing your expertise. We take our most asked questions and turn them into topics for blog posts. When asked by a client whether Facebook contests were worth the time, we wrote a post explaining how to make sure they would be.

Your blog is all about your client, and that’s an important aspect of our content marketing strategy we take very seriously. The more helpful your posts are, the more people share them. Having your posts shared is a good indicator if your content is what it needs to be and how far your reach is.

Shareable Article
We’ve gotten 143 Flares on our Adwords article.

After you find success on your blog, it’s time to focus on guest blogging on other high quality sites. This provides back links to your site and helps get your name and brand out there more.

Building a blog is slow going. We started our campaign in January and finally saw a big increase in May. Your posts have to be consistent, both in high quality and in frequency or your campaign doesn’t stand much of a chance.

We make sure our articles come out consistently, both in timing and quality.

Even with that, it takes time to get viewers consistently to your site. That’s where we brought in social media.

Sharing Blog Posts on Social Media

In order to help our followers find our new blog posts, we share them on Facebook and Twitter for maximized visibility. Not only does this help our posts gain visibility, it also adds valuable content to our social media campaigns.

Good headlines

We make sure our headlines are strong and that how we describe the article is interesting enough to catch attention. On social media, short, sweet, and captivating is an important mix for success (extra short for Twitter!)

This is a white-hat strategy—there’s no spamming with back links to your site. We do not recommend constantly spamming your content to groups on Facebook—our own experimentation with continuously reposting content to groups has proved that it does not work.

Below each post on Facebook, it tells you how many people have been reached, and through your Page’s Insight you can see how many people clicked on that link to your site. Our site is on WordPress.

We use the jetpack plug-in to automatically create social media posts when a new article is posted on our site; it is set on autopilot and we only had to set it up once. Screen Shot 2014-07-27 at 2.29.48 PM

To do this, install the plug in, go through publicizing, and connect to your social media sites. For a visual walk through, take a look at our video at the 9:35 mark.

Creating Content in Video Form

Recent trends have shown gravitation towards information in videos. When it comes to a content marketing strategy, that’s a good bandwagon to go ahead and jump on. YouTube in particular is a great place to be. A lot of our blog posts actually stem from popular YouTube videos as well.

One of our eight minute long videos on Teespring totaled up to 10,000 views and 66 new subscribers, a lot of which found us on Facebook as well. That’s an investment worth making, especially when the only thing you’re really investing in is time.

Consistency is just as important on your YouTube channel everywhere else. People won’t remember to check in if you never have anything to find. As with blog posts, we put out two videos per week.

Screen Shot 2014-07-27 at 1.35.32 PM
With content marketing, consistency will always be crucial to success.

In our videos, just as in our blog posts, we create content that provides value through information. If you’re new to YouTube, make sure you take a look at our article talking about how to find success with your marketing campaign.

Find Your Niche

We are an online marketing company, and Ryan specializes in just about every area of online marketing. If you visit our blog, though, you’ll see that most of our posts focus purely on Facebook marketing.

Why?

Because in order to create high value content, we chose to focus in on one area of online marketing at a time.

By focusing on Facebook, we will delve into every miniscule, detailed area of the Facebook adverising world and answer every question that needs to be answered before moving to other topics (with several exceptions such as this article). We want to be your go-to resource for Facebook marketing and Facebook Ads.

Screen Shot 2014-07-27 at 2.25.12 PM
Some of our Popular Posts

 

You aren’t going to be able to get traffic from everywhere on the Internet, so finding your niche (and even sub-niche!) and sticking to it can help you build your brand and your voice as well as a strong audience. As time goes on you can branch out to more topics, but we’re choosing to stay focused for the time being.

SEO Optimization

We did not rely on SEO, especially not at first. It takes about a year for a blog to start seeing results through SEO, and that’s only if they’re taking steps to be ready for SEO.

We focused on growing our audience through social media marketing and newsletters. Now that we’ve found success with social media, we are expanding our reach by increasing using tactics to increase our SEO rankings.You can see in the graph below how much our search engine traffic has increased.

Our SEO rankings have steadily been increasing.
Our SEO rankings have steadily been increasing.

 

You should not spend a lot of money on products promising to have your SEO rankings skyrocketing as a new blog. Most are scams and gimmicks. Reliable plug ins to help you boost the content yourself, however, can be good.

We’re Using Rignite

Screen Shot 2014-07-27 at 2.46.15 PM

Rignite is a program designed for content and online marketing. We’ve used it for about a month and have seen big increases in our traffic and social media engagement on Facebok and Twitter. It helps you establish, run, and monitor your campaigns. For our full article on Rignite and all of its features, you can click here.

Rignite has been a live saver for a lot of reasons.

It makes it easier for us to do our jobs in general.

It combines our Twitter and Facebook social media marketing campaigns in one place, including great analysis on them.

A graph showing clicks to our site via a single campaign run through Rignite.
A graph showing clicks to our site via a single campaign run through Rignite.

 

Especially for our team, which is across the country in remote locations, having one site where we can work together and communicate easily has made the process easier.

Our current strategy regarding Rignite is to run each blog post twice a week on both Twitter and Facebook separately. We will do this every week for approximately six months.

The reason we do this is simple. Organic traffic is declining, and by reposting content at different times in the day, you’re increasing the chances that more of your audience will see it. At first I was worried it would be too much, but we have likes on almost every post, even if it’s been posted before. I was proven wrong.

We have two or three different headings (the content that appears in the actual post advertising the ad) for Twitter and Facebook, both to capture as much interest as possible as well as to prevent posting the same thing twice in a row.

Good headlines
Heading 1
Heading 2
Heading 2

 

Rignite allows you to create campaigns and then runs them for you. What this means is that you don’t have to double check for which campaigns need reposting—Rignite does that for you, on the schedule you’ve chosen. Especially since we add two blog posts almost every week, keeping up with which posts need to be reposted can be too much without using a tool like Rignite.

Screen Shot 2014-07-29 at 6.45.45 AM

It also helps you manage contests, manage individual cases (you can assign which team member is supposed to respond to commends via Facebook or Twitter, making the long-distance work relationship really easy), and the details in which you can monitor each post of each individual campaign is incredible (we’ll have more on all of this in an upcoming post).

Screen Shot 2014-07-29 at 6.45.11 AM
A campaign reach, by each individual post.

As we’re expanding our site and our business, Rignite is helping us do that in a more much seamless, simple way.

Great new facebook feature “Website Custom Audiences”

wca

Facebook today released a new feature called “Website Custom Audiences” to help marketers reach people across devices and encourage them to take action.

Website Custom Audiences now permits and targets people who have visited their website or mobile app, and some News Feed ads have gained the option to feature enhanced call-to-action buttons. If you are seeking a fun mobile program to attempt that keeps you coming back – fhatscasino.co.za will probably be for you.

Facebook first introduced the Website Custom Audiences last October 2013 , But after three months it’s rolling.

Businesses can use Website Custom Audiences with Power Editor and Ads Manager through PMDs, and via the API.

Social Media Advertising Necessary in 2014?

One of the trends likely to dominate social media marketing in 2014 is advertising.

Facebook said that advertising would ensure posts are more visible in News Feed. Twitter continues to push advertising options and newer networks like Instagram are testing advertising models.

The latest social network to try advertising is Google+, which is beta testing an ad format. Called +Post, it works in a manner similar to Facebook and Twitter promoted posts with one exception: instead of showing up in users’ news feeds, ads will appear on the Google Display Network.

Google +Post ads

Google+ is testing an advertising format called +Post.

Google touts +Post as a way to “amplify a brand’s content that turns Google+ posts into display ads that run across the web. People can join a Hangout On Air, add a comment, follow your brand or give a +1, right from an ad.”

Currently, Google is testing the ad format with larger brands such as Toyota and Cadbury UK. But if the company follows the same path as other social networks, a version of +Post that is better suited to small businesses budgets will likely become available.

What This Means for Merchants

The big story is that, in 2014, effective social media engagement is no longer free. To guarantee visibility and reach, you’re going to have to pay to play.

There are steps to maximize the value of your social media investment other than advertising, such as posting frequent updates and linking social networks to your ecommerce site, but that will only get you so far.

If your best organic efforts are not enough to draw sufficient attention to your brand and products, here are some tips that may help minimize costs and increase the effectiveness of your ads.

  • Post helpful content. Where Facebook is concerned, ads that get the most engagement are those that appear in News Feed. That usually means a promoted post. With that in mind, focus on creating the best content possible in the form of special offers, contests, how-to tips, product-related photos and videos, customer testimonials, and downloadable content such as guides and ebooks. Consider the following:
• Don’t mirror content across every social network. Understand the differences between each.
• Test a variety of content types to see what works best, then create more of the same.
• Monitor the day and time when content you publish gets the most attention and then tune your posting schedule to those times.

 

  • Use eye-catching images. Social network users quickly scan news feeds and timelines to find the most relevant content. Posts that contain images are likely to attract their attention, so use high quality, eye-catching imagery.

Create three or four versions of the same ad using different images, then see which gets the most response.

  • Target ads to reach different audience segments. Many social networks provide the ability to segment ads based on demographic and other criteria. This is especially true with Facebook.

Target ads that reach specific audience segments down to the smallest increments possible. The goal is not to reach the most people with an ad but to reach the most relevant.

  • Know which social networks your customers use. Many, if not most, of your customers will be on Facebook. Beyond that, it’s helpful to know what other networks they use.

For example, 80 percent of Pinterest’s users are women, mostly between the ages of 25 and 44. Younger people are trending away from Facebook toward the use of mobile networks like Instagram and Snapchat. Merchants who sell to other businesses should consider LinkedIn and Google+.

By knowing where your customers maintain a presence, you can promote products using the most appropriate site. Listening to social channels using applications like TrackurMentionContentGems,SocialMention, or Talkwalker is one way to learn where your customers and prospects reside.

Input keywords using your brand name, product name and product category, and set the application to notify you when they appear in social network conversations.

 

Source: http://www.practicalecommerce.com/articles/62901-Social-Media-Advertising-Necessary-in-2014