In honor of Memorial Day, we would like to thank all of the heros that have sacrificed their lives for our Freedom and Protection.
In honor of Memorial Day, we would like to thank all of the heros that have sacrificed their lives for our Freedom and Protection.
When I sat down to write this blog, I couldn’t help but notice the uncanny similarities between the creation of a good website and a stellar camping experience. The changing of the seasons and my excitement for bonfires, tents, kayaking and breathtaking views may be to blame, but stay with me here . . .
The evolution of website design and development over the past few years has created quite an exciting change for web users. The move to full width responsive websites showcasing large quality images, simple and engaging content and seamless navigation has streamlined the user experience.
That being said, when creating a new website the user should be top of mind. Start out by understanding what it is your visitors are looking for and then deliver that so they have a happy and valuable website experience. Hey, after all, you want them to set-up camp and stay a while, right?
Here are four tips to creating an effective website:
How’s the view? Like any top-notch adventure, visitors want an enjoyable and exciting view. Is your website visually pleasing to the eye of your target audience? Good website design gratifies the audience it caters to. Quality and meaningful images, unique graphics, prominent call-to-actions and buttons of complementary colors should all be considered in the design of your new website.
Adobe has a great tool for creating color combinations for your design: Click here
Are you providing a valuable map? A streamlined sitemap and navigation should be top of mind when creating a new website. Consider yourself the tour guide of their experience. You want to direct them through the site with engaging content, links to additional pages and a call-to-action. How easily visitors find their way around the site and are able to engage with the content greatly benefits your site ranking.
Is your content informative? Like the handy information desk at all tourist stops, information should be easily accessible and informative to your visitors. Each page on the site should have a clear purpose, a well thought out title and should also utilize headings, subheadings and bulleted lists. Content should be created with your user in mind. What topics will excite them? What information are they looking for when they visit your site?
Is the site active and in working order? Or did the maintenance man take the summer off?
You have seconds to engage or lose your audience. When visitors run into the examples above, they’re quickly lost. Outdated or minimal content shows the site hasn’t been kept up and credibility of the brand diminishes. It’s important once you create a great site to maintain the content and functionality.
Try incorporating these four tips into your website plans to assure you have happy visitors who want to return!
Happy Mother’s Day to all the wonderful mothers out there.
Thank you for everything you do!
Who cares more than your mother?
This is an expression I often use in conversation. In fact, I said it again just the other day but this time, with Mother’s Day approaching, I caught myself pausing for a moment and actually thinking about this line that I so often use.
Who really does care more than your mother?
When I think back through all the years with my mother, Marilyn, I’m extremely fortunate to have had both a personal as well as a professional business relationship with her. This is very unique (some might say crazy) and also very rewarding. She has been by my side as a wonderful mom and also a great business partner, mentor and inspiration to me.
I started Prime with my mom’s encouragement and support. She was there for me when I needed to win new projects but the experienced business community wanted more reassurance than a baby-faced kid on the other side of the table telling them the job would get done. And with mom’s guidance, it did.
Only a mother would agree to come out of retirement to help establish a business. And do so on a commission basis. And when I signed a lease for Prime to move into our first ‘real’ office, I called my mom, on her vacation, half way around the world, to tell her the news. And only a mother would take that call.
One of my mother’s favorite quotes is “You will get all you want in life, if you help enough other people get what they want.” In my personal life and through our shared appreciation of faith in our daily lives, my mom has taught me to care for other people. To help other people. To give back. To volunteer. To donate. This is also evident in the way we conduct our daily business, now as equal partners. Trust, follow through, and do what you say you are going to do.
Another of mom’s favorite quotes is “If it’s going to be, it’s up to me.” Well Mom, it has been up to me, and there has been no better way to have it be, than with you by my side all these years.
Best wishes to all the great mothers for a happy Mother’s Day weekend!
Happy Cinco De Mayo from Prime. Are you celebrating the day today or did you attend festivities over the weekend?
Connect, inspire and engage. These are three great marketing terms, and are most impactful when accomplished together. Over the past several years, the methods of connecting, inspiring and engaging have evolved in dramatic ways. While visual communication is older than the hills, the effectiveness of it may be greater today than perhaps at any point in time.
Text has long been the popular means of conveying a message. However, technology has taken photography and video to incredible levels. Humans process images hundreds of thousands of times faster than text, leaving us at the intersection of technology and availability that allows visuals to produce profound results.
Digital technology has created a population rich in photographers and videographers, evidenced by sites like Pinterest and YouTube… which just celebrated its tenth birthday and lays claim to more than four billion video views per day. While both the volume and consumption of video and photography continues to explode, so does the opportunity to connect visually with an audience in the most impactful way: emotionally.
Here are five considerations for incorporating photos and videos into your marketing strategy:
Need help? There are websites, apps and resources available at every turn offering stock photography and suites of creative services that can turn an ordinary campaign into extraordinary success. Given articles and posts that include images and video far outperform those without, now is the time to incorporate photos and videos into your communication efforts.
It’s always interesting when ad materials come across my desk, or arrive in my inbox. Some are awesome, some are great, but more than a few are just ok or leave one thinking why spend the money to place the ad, but little or nothing on the creative. Here are a few tips to consider when working on the creative and messaging for your next advertisement.
Have your target audience in mind. The most successful ads connect with an audience in a ‘voice’ they can understand. Customers should automatically understand that your offer directly relates to them.
Have a focal point. When looking at your ad, is your eye drawn somewhere or do you search for what you are supposed to read. Clean, clear design will help your ad stand out.
Have a clear message. Try to communicate to your audience a clear idea of what it is that you offer in a single sentence. If the reader only reads one thing on the page, make sure it is your headline. Short phrases are easier to digest than complicated ones.
Avoid clutter. Oftentimes less is more. Every square millimeter of space does not need to be filled with content. White space is a good thing!
Use a call to action. It’s good practice in an ad to inform an audience on what to do next. Simple and successful phrases asking to call for more information, visit a website, register now, etc. can help drive traffic to site or store.
Present a benefit. You will be a leg up on the competition if you can quantify to your audience how they will benefit from your product or service.
Make it easy to connect. Including websites, phone numbers and social media accounts assure that when they are ready, customers can find you.
Incorporate these tips into your next creative meeting and you will be on your way to maximizing your ad performance. Good luck!
Content. Content. Content. SEO. SEO. SEO. Do you feel like you’re spending every waking hour creating relevant website content only to find it in the “dark”? Or equivalent, the second page of Google’s search engine results.
Although Google’s algorithms are a secret kept in the same vault as Wonka’s chocolate recipe and website owners are left to some guesswork, we’re here to help. Bring your content to light with our three best practices for creating website content that not only engages your clients, but makes the search engines happy, too.
#1 Creative Keyword Research: Are you using search terms that are relevant to the products and services of your core business? Lets take it a step deeper. Are you using search terms that are relevant to the products and services of your business, have regular search engine inquires, and are in a manageable realm of competitiveness? These are critically important questions to ask yourself when deciding which keywords and phrases you plan to focus on in your content. Answer all three questions for each focus keyword and you’re well on your way to SEO excellence!
Need help researching potential keywords for your business?
Google AdWords Keyword Planner is a great tool to conduct your research and to better understand the ranking potential of each.
#2 Engaging & Beneficial Website Content: Regular search-optimized blog posts engaging your customers will drive traffic to your site. Clear and concise copy will retain and extend their visit. Both website traffic and amount of time visitors spend on your page are factors to your search engine rankings. When Google sees someone visit a site and stay a while, it tells them the content was beneficial. When a visitor quickly leaves (or bounces) it tells Google the visitor did not find what they were looking for or the content wasn’t beneficial. So the next time you rush through your blog post, toss a few words on the screen and share it, take a moment to step into the shoes of a potential visitor and ask yourself, how does this content benefit them?
Having a hard time keeping up with your blog? Create an editorial calendar to map out your blog post timeline and content ideas. If you have a strategy and tactics in place, and the discipline to regularly execute them, success can be achieved.
#3 Strategic Keyword Placement: So, we have our keywords and our content. Now how do we properly combine the two? Most importantly, keyword stuffing is a thing of the past, a misguided tactic to improve SEO and shows poor content strategy. Search engines like Google are smart, very smart. They can decipher relevant content by connecting related keywords and phrases. Furthermore, repetitive language doesn’t read well and will leave the reader confused. A confused reader is not likely to venture onto the next page, or stay on your site long (which we now know isn’t good for our SEO). Therefore, be tactical with your keywords. Each page should have minimal focus keywords utilized in titles, headings, and naturally woven into the text. Following these guidelines will help you produce great content and a higher organic rank.
Remember: The end goal for Google and other search engines is to return results that are relevant, useful and reliable. Create optimized, engaging, clear and concise content and you’re one step closer to understanding the Google Algorithm (we can’t help you with Wonka’s secret recipe).
Questions about writing for web? Leave your comments below.
How easy do we make it for others to do business with us? This is a question that every business should consider. Google has presumably asked themselves this same question recently, as they are preparing to address how they serve their mobile audience.
Google has reported extreme growth in mobile users on their search engine and expect mobile to surpass desktop searches this year. Considering this, Google aims to give the mobile visitor the best experience by recommending sites that are mobile friendly. Gone are the days of sites that require you to “pinch in zoom” and welcomed are sites that are either fully responsive or mobile friendly.
How Will This Affect Google Rankings?
Taken right from Google’s announcement, “This change will affect mobile searches in all languages worldwide and will have a significant impact in our search results.” This is a very bold statement and is considered the most important and highest impact algorithm update yet from Google. The leader in the search industry clearly feels strongly about delivering not only the most relevant, but also the highest quality results that are optimized for a given device.
Google does not share all the details of this update, so businesses will not know the full impact until after the April 21st update. Speculation is that non-mobile friendly websites will not be punished or discounted like those that take part in black hat techniques, but rather sites that are mobile friendly will be heavily rewarded. This is one of the first times that Google has said, “You need to do this!” Search Engine Optimizers all over the world would wish Google was always this direct.
One requirement from Google is that all indexed pages on a website be mobile friendly, not just the home page. This means that creating a simple one page mobile landing page will not suffice. Google indexes several pages on a given site and they will all need to be mobile friendly.
What Should You Do About It?
The first step is to consult with whomever built your website. There will be multiple options for you ranging from creating a mobile version of your site to a complete rebuild to make it 100% responsive.
Inquiries from clients are on the rise regarding this Google algorithm update, and the solutions vary from client to client based on several factors. If you have any questions regarding your website and its mobile friendliness, start to explore your options. After all, you’ve worked hard to establish your visibility and Google ranking. Are you prepared to keep it?
Happy Easter from all of your Friends at Prime Advertising.
Enjoy the weekend with loved ones.