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Live Streaming or Recorded video. Which is better?

Posted By Gabriel Salcido, Arizona Small Business Association, Monday, January 18, 2016

Tags:  live streaming  online marketing  video  YouTube 

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Your Grand List of Marketing Tools

Posted By Michael Arce, Loud Rumor, Wednesday, December 30, 2015

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As an online advertising agency, we rely pretty heavily on a ton of tools to help us provide awesome services. Whether this is for design, enhancing user experience, or staying on track, tools are a great way to take a business to the next level and work efficiently. These are the marketing tools we love to use at Loud Rumor:


Web Design


Landing Pages


Social Media Design


Free Images/Icons


Content Marketing


WordPress Plugins


Organization/ Task Management


What other marketing tools would you add to this list? Let us know in the comments below. And if you have any questions on how these resources can help take your business to the next level, ask our team!

Tags:  content marketing  design  internet marketing  online marketing  Social media marketing  wordpress 

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5 Tools to Find Your Competitor’s Backlinks and Gain More Authority Than Them!

Posted By Michael Arce, Loud Rumor, Wednesday, December 16, 2015

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When it comes to small businesses… you want to be the #1 source in your industry for consumers. That means you need to be everywhere. And in order to do that, it’s important to analyze where your competitors are (that’s valuable) so that you can be there too. Another huge benefit to more backlinks? It’ll boost your
SEO game a ton when done the right way. Here are 5 tools we love - use them to gain more authority for your business:

1 - Open Site Explorer

This is a Moz tools that shows which high authoritative sites your competitors are listed on. Type in your competitor’s URL and you’ll receive a long list of their linking pages. Open Site Explorer also shows you the PA/DA (page authority/ domain authority) and spam score of each inbound link so you know which ones would be beneficial to your local business - these are all opportunities.

2 - Monitor Backlinks

This tool not only pinpoints which current links you have that aren’t any good, but it also searches for your competitor’s good links that you can get listed on. Monitor Backlinks does just that… it monitors your competitor’s backlinks! It’ll alert you whenever a competitor gets a new, high quality link so that you stay current on all of your competition and what they’re doing.

3 - Ahrefs

Enter your competitor’s URL and it’ll return all of their backlinks. Much like Open Site Explorer, Ahrefs shows you the PA/DA of all these links.


However, this tool breaks down the analysis of each backlink a little more by categorizing them into specific groups:Screen Shot 2015-05-08 at 3.39.15 PM.png

4 - Bright Local

Bright Local offers a variety of beneficial SEO tools, but their most notable for this backlink research is their “CitationTracker.” This allows you to see what citations your competitors have that you might be missing out on. Review which local and niche directories competitors are on that would help your business, and target those sites. CitationTracker is a great way to stay up to speed with your competitor and make sure you’re matching and surpassing their backlinks.

5 - Link Prospector

Link Prospector does all the backlink searching for you. Whether you’re looking for guest post opportunities, directory listings, sponsorship opportunities and so on, they’ll help get you there. This tool sorts each prospect in the order of your best opportunities based on a specified keyword that you select. So Link Prospector is a great tool to find the best backlinks that are personalized for your local business.


What other tools do you use for your competitor research? Let our team know below!

Tags:  Local SEO  online marketing  SEO  small business 

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3 Ways to Track AdWords Performance

Posted By Michael Arce, Loud Rumor, Tuesday, December 8, 2015

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When it comes to AdWords management, you want to make sure your advertising dollars are spent valuably. So there are 3 main things you should track: cost, clicks, and conversions.

1 - Cost

Once your campaign is live, you’ll want to continuously go back and revise.


So be sure to check the cost of your campaign on a weekly basis. See which keywords provide the most engagement and determine whether or not you should increase your bid. Same goes with keywords you currently pay for that are performing poorly. You don’t want to accrue cost with these terms. They should be paused.


Always check that the fees you accumulate with your AdWords campaign actually bring in clicks and conversions. Otherwise, it’s a loss in profit and you throw your money away.

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2 - Click

“Clicks” refer to the number of times your ads were clicked on by a user. Track your campaign’s clicks to see which ads perform the best.


This helps clarify what you should change, what you should focus on, and what appeals to users.

3 - Conversion

Once a customer completes the call to action derived from your ad, you’ve received a conversion. And that’s always the end goal.


You want the user to complete your call to action (call, download this form, purchase this online, etc.) so that the real business can begin. That’s where your return on investment comes in.


RELATED: Case Study - The AdWords Campaign That Got A 77% Conversion Rate


There are a couple ways to track conversions:


  • Call tracking - Follow phone calls from customers to determine what they were looking for, what problems they needed fixed, etc. to optimize the campaign better

  • On-site tracking - Follow how many users fill out a contact form, make a purchase online, or sign up for one of your offers through your ad  


If you have any questions on how to setup, optimize, or track your AdWords campaign, let us know! Our team at Loud Rumor can help.

Tags:  Adwords  Online Advertising  online marketing  PPC 

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5 Tools to Track Your SEO Efforts

Posted By Michael Arce, Loud Rumor, Tuesday, December 1, 2015

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1 - Google Analytics

Google Analytics allows you to define your website goals and provides measurements to track those outcomes - it’s a must for SEO.

It keeps you up to speed on all traffic to your website so you can clearly see which type of visitors are landing on your page, where they’re coming from, which web browser they used, what keywords they typed in, and 1,000 other things! This information allows you to improve your strategies for better reach and conversion.


Get our Local Business Guide to Google Analytics here.

2 - Google Webmaster Tools

Google Webmaster Tools is like a constant doctor checkup that shows the overall health of your site. It’s great for Local SEO.


It shows any crawl errors, sitemap issues, broken links, 404s, and so on. It also tells a business how many impressions their pages get, and how many of these impressions turned into clicks (click-thru-rate).

3 - MozBar

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The MozBar is the ultimate toolbar of all toolbars. It breaks down the overall Local SEO factors of a website including their page authority, domain authority, title tags, meta descriptions, spam score, link metrics, markup (Schema.org), and more.


Basically, it saves you time. You don’t have to open another window to search for a competitor’s on-page authority. It’s always right at the top of your screen (as long as you use Chrome or Firefox).

4 - Google Alerts

Use Google Alerts to stay updated whenever your company (and anything related to it) is mentioned online.


So for us, we have an alert setup for “Loud Rumor” which provides a ton of results that are both related and unrelated to our business name. The purpose here is to see what content Google pulls in relation to your company. Do the same thing with your competitors. Set up an alert with their name along with anything else you might want messaged to you (industry topics, specific event updates, etc).

5 - Agency Analytics

Monitor your business’ Local SEO to determine what is and isn’t working. Agency Analytics (previously known as My SEO Tool) reports a site’s overall SEO performance. The program focuses on three main aspects: rankings, monitors backlinks, and analyzes competition.


It connects to Google Analytics, Google Webmaster Tools, MOZ, and more so you can track all of your website metrics under one roof. It’s a hub for all of the marketing reports you would ever need (PPC, social media, call tracking, etc.).


Let us know what other SEO tools you use to track your marketing efforts! Our team is always looking to learn and teach more about SEO.

Tags:  google  Local SEO  online marketing  SEO  small business 

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Website Layout Tips for Small Business

Posted By Michael Arce, Loud Rumor, Wednesday, November 25, 2015

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As a local business, your website is a tremendous tool to generate leads and grow your company. But there is a science to a successful online presence. Unless the right steps are taken, you risk wasting all that time, money, and effort invested into site, or worse… landing past page 2 in Google search results. Here are successful website page layout tips for your business!

Navigation

Your website should be easy to navigate. All of your pages should be clearly displayed for the user. A visitor to your site shouldn’t struggle from page to page,


Either have your navigation bar horizontally across the top of the site, or vertically to the left. This is what users expect to see, so stick to the standard style.


You also want to avoid having too many tabs in your navigation. It becomes overwhelming to the user. If you find that this is the case, create a dropdown menu like we did:

Screen Shot 2015-06-19 at 10.23.17 AM.png

URL Structure

The structure of each of your page’s URL also influences your on-site SEO.


Here are a few things to note:


1: You want your URL to be readable to humans - if it looks like code, it’s hard to decipher.

2: Include keywords in your URL but don’t keyword stuff.

3: Shorter URLs are better than longer ones.

4: Use hyphens or underscores to separate words.

Design

55% of users spend less than 15 seconds on a webpage. So your site needs to stand out.


Although the overall theme and design of your website will depend on your business’ brand and preferences, there are still a few things you should consider:


  • Do not use autoplay videos. 84% of people ages 25-34 leaves sites because of these intrusive ads.

  • Think about the way the eye travels and use display images/ text/ CTA accordingly. Visual Website Optimizer found that by adjusting your design layout, it can lead to over a 35% increase in sales if done correctly.

  • Every single one of your pages needs to be engaging. People don’t just land on homepages anymore.


Related: 4 Design Trends That Can Blow Up Your SEO Efforts!

Scannable

When people enter your site, they (usually) don’t read everything. They scan.


Visitors tend to read in an F-shaped pattern when digesting a site:

eyetracking.jpg

(source: Nielsen Norman Group)


So use this to your advantage. Put your important information and primary CTA in these highlighted sections.


Follow these tips and your website will be headed toward success! For any other questions, don’t hesitate to contact our team.

Tags:  online marketing  SEO  small business  website 

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The Blogging Tips and Tools Your Small Business Needs to Stand Out

Posted By Michael Arce, Loud Rumor, Wednesday, November 18, 2015

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As a local business, you may have noticed that it's hard to come up with right type of content for your blog. You want to produce material that gets a high amount of traffic. But that’s easier said than done. If you write about what you do in your industry and post it to your blog, that just won’t cut it. You’ve got to go above and beyond - with every article. Here’s how we do it at Loud Rumor...

Trend

Choosing a topic might seem like the most difficult aspect of blogging. You don’t want to sell, keyword stuff, or write just for the sake maintaining fresh content.


So what do you want? You want to choose a topic that you know will trend. It needs to be something readers want to share with others. This keeps the hype up on your blog so that more people outside of your circle see the article.


“It doesn't matter how good your content is. If you don't make it compelling enough to click and share, no one will know it exists” - Upworthy

Association

People should want to be associated with your article. Once someone reads your blog, they’ll feel like it’ll make them look good if they share it.


7 out of 10 people share things they find online specifically with the intent of promoting their own image and identity. So you want to provide your readers with material they are proud to associate themselves with if shared. Cater to that desire.


If you wouldn’t connect an article written by your business to your own personal social media, then why would others?

Tools

We’ve told you how important it is to choose a topic that will trend, to find the right inspiration, and to create content that people want to be connected with. But we don’t expect you to do all of this on your own. Here are a few tools to help:


  • Buzzsumo - Find trendable content. If you have a general topic in mind, enter it into Buzzsumo. This tool shows you super successful articles related to that topic that have already received high engagement and traffic.

  • HackerNews - Find inspiration from material that is already live and receiving traffic. Refer to the “points” on each article to see how successful certain content is.

  • Inbound.org - Explore discussions that people are having to determine what type of information appeals to the masses. This will show you what people care about, and what the take time to engage with.

  • HubSpot’s Blog Topic Generator - Fill in their form with three nouns that you want to blog about. They then generate different article ideas for you. For instance, if you type in “PPC, conversion, lead generation,” the following results appear:


Screen Shot 2015-05-04 at 2.16.35 PM.png


If you have any questions on how to up your SEO and content marketing game with blogging, ask our team!

Tags:  blogging  content marketing  marketing  online marketing  small business 

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How to do Keyword Research to Destroy Your Competition!

Posted By Michael Arce, Loud Rumor, Wednesday, November 4, 2015

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Your keywords are everything when it comes to online marketing. They go on your website, blog, ads, listings, and so much more. They’re scary crucial. That’s why you want to choose terms that’ll get the best results for your small business. So, here are a few keyword research tips that’ll really trick your competitors and leave ‘em in the dust!

Competitor Research & Keyword Research

Organic Search

In order to dominate your competitors, first you need to find out what keywords they’re already ranking for. Start out with an organic Google search of your business’ services/ product and city/ neighborhood. For example, if you’re a local venue and you search, “Phoenix Halloween venues,” it’ll look like this:

Screen Shot 2015-10-13 at 1.21.02 PM.png


Review the top results - these are your competitors. Make a note of who ranks in the positions you want to rank for, and with the keywords you want to be associated with. Only search on the first page to choose competitors who currently succeed where you want to succeed. That’s where the real magic happens.


Find Keywords

You’ve found your top competitors. Now see which keywords they target to rank.  

I like to use this frighteningly awesome free tool, the MozBar.So if you select Fear Farm, a listing from the “Phoenix haunted venues” search, you’ll see a ton of spooky cool on-page elements:

Screen Shot 2015-10-13 at 1.23.15 PM.png


So you can see that they focus on keywords like “best haunted house” “haunted house in Phoenix,” and so on.
Write down each of these keywords as potential terms for your local business.

Keyword Research Tools

Plain and simple… in order to do killer keyword research that’ll really trick your competitors and leave them back in the dark, these tools are your best friends.  


  1. Keyword Tool

  2. Übersuggest

  3. Keyword Planner


They show awesome metrics about the keywords you found from your competitors above. See the search volume, competition level, and more of each term you’ve chosen to analyze.

Head Over To Google My Business

Use your Google My Business (GMB) page to see where you should expand your keywords regionally.  *Note* If you don’t already have a GMB page set up, here’s how:

Related - How to Set Up Your Google My Business

Once your page is alive and verified, look at your insights for an overview of “driving directions requests.” This section of the insights shows in which neighborhoods or cities people search for your services while driving. So, it could be good to expand your keyword reach to these areas. It helps you get a little more granular too, which is also great.

Test before you choose

Just like with anything you want to invest in, isn’t it great to give it a spin first? Whether this is with a new car, clothes, food you can sample, and so on, you want to test it or try it on before you buy. You want to make sure it’s a good fit, because the last thing you’d want is to look a little ridiculous with whatever you choose in the end…

ridiculous.gif


Same goes with keywords.

Before you choose which keywords to put on your site, test them first. There’s no point spending time on keyword research if the terms won’t help your small business in the long run.

Use this Keyword Position Tool to see where you already rank in Google, Bing, and Yahoo for your list of keywords. You only want to focus on keywords that are realistic for you to eventually rank for. So if you’re on page 15 for a keyword, that wouldn’t help your efforts. Then you’ll be the one stuck in the dark.

Choose a page range of 1-10. Don’t focus on keywords that you rank past page 10 for. The closer you are to page 1, the quicker you can crawl your way to the top with that keyword. Here’s an example of one that does really great with their main keyword in Google:

Screen Shot 2015-10-13 at 1.40.24 PM.png


All of these steps help you target your competitors, outline awesome potential keywords, research how well they’ll do, and actually test them out. There’s an entire process that goes into this. But if you have any other questions on these keywords research tips, let us know. Give a shout out below!


 

 

Tags:  keyword research  Local SEO  online marketing  SEO  small business 

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Facebook Wins Again: Instagram Ads through the Power Editor

Posted By Michael Arce, Loud Rumor, Wednesday, October 28, 2015

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Instagram ads have been available since November 1, 2013. But the process for creating them was a bit time consuming and difficult. So Facebook decided to do something about it. Now users can create Instagram ads directly through Power Editor. Our team at Loud Rumor is loving it, and here’s what you need to know.

Instagram Ads are Now Super Easy to Create

This is really cool because people get to use the exact same program they’d use for their Facebook ads, so the ad creation process is very familiar.


Instagram ads are easier to create, manage, and edit with the Power Editor.


This was a really smart move for both Facebook and Instagram, especially since most people who use Instagram are already familiar with Facebook marketing and the Power Editor. It’s a win win.

New Facebook Ad Formats Do Really Well

Something we’ve always noticed with Facebook is that their new ad formats tend to do really well. When the carousel ads were first introduced, for example, they got awesome results. People clicked. People shared. Peopled converted. Users like what’s new. The same thing is happening with Instagram Ads.

Difference between facebook and instagram ads

There are a couple of major differences between these two advertising options. With Instagram, you can’t have your logo overlayed in the ad because they want to keep that image rich format without getting too spammy. And that’s good because Instagram is more of a visual medium than Facebook even. So your ads need to subtly catch people’s attention in style...


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You also need to say and express a lot more with a lot less. With Facebook, for example, you have text formats. You can put 20% text on your images. You have headlines, descriptions, and CTAs you can use to your advantage as well. With Instagram, though, you don’t get that. Although you can put a some text under the image itself like any other Instagram post, it’s more limited.


That being said, you want to provide high image quality content. You want your image to stand out, which is harder on Instagram than it is on Facebook because of all the competition - Instagram is only images! So you need to choose something that looks great and makes someone want to click and follow up.

Image Options

You have the same image options to choose from for your Instagram ads as your Facebook Ads:


  • Single image

  • 30 second video that auto plays in people’s feeds

  • Carousel images - just keep in mind that the text avenue to get your message out isn’t there like it is with Facebook (ad copy, ad text, headline, etc.)


insta.png

Targeting Options

Since you can create Instagram ads through the Power Editor, the audience targeting is exactly the same as Facebook’s. This allows you to target specific people on instagram so you don’t send your images out blindly.


Related: 3 Facebook Advertising Tips for Super Niche Targeting


You can get as niche with Instagram as you do with Facebook. So you can use Facebook’s database and metrics with custom audiences to build your audience based on interests, age, behavior, and so on. Most people on Instagram are also Facebook users so the Power Editor is able to easily gather this information since the platforms are now connected.


There’s a ton that goes into social media advertising. Facebook ads alone can be a handful… throw in Instagram and it’s a whole new story! So if you have any other questions on Instagram ads through the Power Editor, let us know!


Tags:  Facebook  Facebook ads  Instagram  online marketing  Power Editor  small business  Social media marketing 

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Stay On Top of Competition With These Marketing Tools

Posted By Michael Arce, Loud Rumor, Wednesday, October 21, 2015

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A small business’ goal is to be the top dog in their industry. That means you constantly need to do better than your competitors. And since that’s the case, you may want to use these awesome marketing tools to stay on top of your competition and really keep an eye out. Here are a few we use at
Loud Rumor!

Google Alerts

If you want to be the first one to know what your competitors are doing, then Google Alerts is your best friend. This tool sends you updates whenever a competitor is mentioned online. What’s really cool is that you can set how often you receive these updates (as it happens, weekly, etc.), which really allows you to stay current.

Social Mention

Social mention is kind of similar to Google Alerts in the sense that you can keep track of your competition online whenever they’re mentioned. But this is all through social media. So you get to see who talks about them, what they post, what hashtags they use, and more. It’s awesome.

Open Site Explorer

This is a great tool that keeps you updated on your competition’s backlinks, PA/DA (page authority/ domain authority), and so on. So if you’re looking to increase your rankings, you’ll want to be on the high authoritative sites that your competition is on. Open Site Explorer shows you where you might need to get listed.

What Runs Where

You definitely want to keep track of your competitor’s advertising efforts. What Runs Where does that. You get to see where they’re advertising, what ads they’re investing in, and how successful these efforts are.


Related: 7-Step Guide on How to Do AdWords Optimization Like A Boss


These are just a few of many marketing tools that allow you to stay on top of your competition. For more tips, contact our team! And if a few of your favorites haven’t been mentioned here, leave a comment and share your top tools with the rest of us! We’d love to check them out.

Tags:  competition  internet marketing  marketing  marketing tools  online marketing  small business 

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