Small Dog Creative

    Social Networking & Marketing

    Social networking and marketing are key factors to getting your website seen. Think of your social networks as back doors to your website--they allow people to find your business and services on the internet without needing to conduct a Google search. It's also a great way to get people to stumble upon your business. ...

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    Selling a Product on Your Website

    Opening up your site to e-commerce is a great way to bring in extra cash. You can start with a few products and work your way up to a full store....

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    Starting Newsletters

    Newsletters are a lot of work, but they are an important tool for communicating with your clients and staying "top of mind." Before you begin, you need to decide what you want your newsletter to be about. Most people probably aren't interested in your company business, so try and focus on things your potential customer might want to know. As business owners, there are things we teach our client to help us make the sale, or to keep our customers well informed, these topics should be the cornerstone of your newsletter....

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    Email Marketing & Building Your List

    New customers are the life-blood of a growing company. Bringing new customers in the door is vital to maintaining and growing your business. Subscriptions to newsletters, updates, tips, events or email campaigns are a great way to get potential customer information, and turn leads into new customers. When people subscribe to your newsletter, it's because they want more information or to find out more about your product or service. These qualified leads are the makings of a strong customer database....

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    Adding Video

    Video is an engaging addition to a website. Not only is is a great way to show off your products or services, Google loves video and rewards sites with video. Video can also be distributed to various video sites, and posted to YouTube and Facebook pages....

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    Announcements & Calendars

    Announcements...

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    Starting Forums

    A great way to build out your website without working too hard is with a forum. Providing a place for people to ask and answer questions, discuss issues, and meet people is a great way to strengthen your website with original content. Best of all, you don't need to write it!...

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    You're Not Finished after the Launch... Growing & Maintaining Your Website

    While the launch (or birth) of your site is something to celebrate, the job isn't over yet! The site you launched is just the beginning--think of it as the "toddler phase," it's going but you'll still need to put in your due effort to keep it on track in the right direction. Your website is an important part of your marketing strategy and your company strategy; you need to continue to provide it with the support and tools it needs to become and remain a valuable part of the team & your business' success....

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    The Biggest Crime In Marketing

    It takes a lot to stand out from the crowd these days. Creative approaches to your marketing can bring in a much higher return on your investment than the traditional approaches. Why?... Because creativity gets remembered! The biggest mistake you can make is investing in a campaign people will forget. If you are not a little nervous, or absolutely thrilled with your campaign then it will probably be forgotten. Maybe this year you should try something different with your marketing. Standing out of the crowd takes creativity and courage, for those willing to give it a shot, it can have a tremendous payoff. Let us create your next marketing campaign, and keep your customers talking....

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    Smarter Marketing with Targeting

    Most businesses find that a whopping 80% of their business comes from only 20% of their clients. Which is why the first thing we recommend all business owners do before the launch their next campaign is narrow down who their top 20% is. Why bring in more of the 80% of your customers or clients who are not bringing in money. ...

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    How To Get More Leads From Your Website

    We all know websites are a powerful marketing tool but not all websites are used to their full potential. Few visitors will call or buy from a website on the first visit, so getting their information in some other way is important. Getting their information allows you to reconnect, inform them and bring them back to your site....

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    Bringing Business In Fast

    Unfortunately in the last 5 years I have run into business owners who bring us in at the last possible second. I typically hear something like... "Business has been really slow, and we need to bring new customers in the door fast.  We don't have a marketing budget, but we need to do something."...

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    Linking and Syncing Your Social Networks

    Your social networks are gold! Make sure to take advantage of social networking sites like Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn (just to name a few). These outlets are a great way to connect and network with people & potential customers....

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    Pixar's 22 Rules of Phenomenal Storytelling

    I'm a big fan of Pixar! I admire their creativity, imagination and their ability to tell stories that are truly timeless. The rise of Pixar is also an extraordinary story of determination and a life long passion to create amazing stories. Which is why when anyone at Pixar talks about their practices and rules... I listen....

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    What is a Conversion Rate? - PODCAST

    I want to talk about something called your website's Conversion Rate, how important that is to your website, and how neglected it really is. Conversion rate is the percentage of total visitors who convert while visiting your website. Now, depending on what type of website you have, your conversion might be different. Your conversion could be a sale, capturing a lead, registration, signing up for something, or some other kind of call to action on your website. Your conversion rate is the amount of people you get to actually take one of those steps or actions. If you have 100 people visiting your site, and one person decides to fill out a contact form, then you have a 1% conversion rate. If 2 people do it, then you have a 2% conversion rate. One or two percent might seem pretty low, but it's really not bad. It's actually pretty good. Anywhere between 1 and 3 percent conversion rate should be considered a pretty good rate for a website. So, if you have 400 people come to your website every week, and you don't have 4-8 people contacting you or taking an action, then conversion rate should be something you really start thinking about, as well as how to optimize your conversion rate or get more people to take that next step or call to action. There are a number of reasons why you would want to perform Conversion Rate Optimization on your website. If you wanted to take advantage of the traffic you already have coming to your website, for example if you have 400 visitors coming to your website and you're seeing a 0.5% conversion rate, then taking a look at your website and increasing your Conversion Rate could mean more revenue with the same amount of traffic you already get. That's something nobody wants to shy away from. Another reason is that before you start to put your money into a Search Engine Optimization (SEO) program or social media, or any other kind of online marketing, it's really important to take a look at how many people your site is able to capture, or how many leads are really coming through there. If you put a lot of money into SEO, and you have a 0.5% conversion rate or lower, you would be pouring money down the drain. If you had a 2, 3, or 4% conversion rate, then that's a great time to put money into an SEO plan, because you know your website can actually make that sale for you. The other big advantage to conversion rate is especially neglected:  companies put up a website, and that's it - they don't touch it again. They don't take a look at it and they don't follow the numbers to see what's working and what's not. Taking a look at your Conversion Rate is a fairly new thing to do or track. If you start optimizing your website by looking to increase your website's Conversion Rate and getting more leads from the traffic you already have, then you're going to have a much more efficient online marketing program. You're going to see a much higher return on any investment that you're making. Starting early is the best way to go. The next question is how do you change or increase a Conversion Rate? This can be different things, but usually it starts with the design of the site. Your website is an online salesperson, and it is out there 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. It is either selling for you, telling a story, and doing a wonderful job, or it's not. If your salesperson - your website - isn't showing up looking "ready for work," then it's not going to get you sales. A lot of websites out there aren't designed well. They don't look professional; they don't look like a professional designer touched them; they look like they were thrown up in five minutes; or they might look like they were thrown up in the early 90s. It's important to make sure that the design of your website gives people the trust you need to instill in them for them to give you a call, take another step or even stay on your website. The next part is making sure you have pieces in place to convert. It's surprising how many websites have a "free-for-all" attitude, and don't have a path or clear direction for visitors to travel down. Once they get to the end of that path, all that's there is a phone number or contact form. If you increase the number of ways that you can convert people - having multiple order forms, quote forms, get them to sign up for a newsletter, get them to do something, or get them to do one of five things - then you're going to increase your odds of having somebody do something with your website. Any lead and any information your gather is somebody you can follow up with, and reconnect with, which is vital in the online marketing world. Changing conversion rate does get more detailed than that, but that's the big stuff. We've covered the parts you really should be concerned with. Take a look at your site, check out your design, make sure you have a sales pitch and a sales path, and a way to capture information and you're on your way! If you are interested in leaving questions, feel free to post them on the blog and we'll respond with comments. You're also welcome to contact us on our website if you have any more questions or comments....

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    Small Business Marketing = Smart Marketing

    The biggest crime is marketing is not being remembered. This goes for small business marketing especially. So get creative and even a little crazy, because in the end, being remembered is what counts! Ideas that strike a chord or seem a little wacky are the same ideas that stick in people's minds. For small businesses, it can be hard to compete with the big-budget advertising of the industry moguls, but veering off the beaten path and thinking outside of the box can be the salvation for small business marketing. In many ways, small business marketing is smarter marketing. A smaller budget does not have to mean lower quality or less success. Reworking ideas and finding ways to spin things in your favor may take some extra work, but it will pay off. This covers everything from web & print marketing campaigns to promotions & sales....

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    Upcoming Seminar: SEO in Plain English

    Want to See Your Website at the Top of Google Search Results?...

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    Are You Tooting Your Own Horn?

    It’s vital to share positive press about your company. After all, if you don’t spread your good news, who will?...

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    Sharing is Power: Social Sharing in Email Marketing Part 1

    Social sharing has become a next-to-natural part of email marketing, and it’s a trend that is rendering enormous results. Email has become a social tool in itself. Are you using your emails to your fullest advantage?...

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    May the 4th Be With You: Star Wars Day!

    May is a great month for creative promotions!...

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