Author Archives: Stephanie Brown

Do You Have An Effective Content Marketing Strategy?

An effective content marketing strategy is an essential factor in delivering your business’s message to your customers. By developing a strong content marketing strategy, your ability to attract and retain the attention of your targeted audience will significantly increase, which will provide you with optimal end results, allowing for the success of your business.

 

Who Is Your Audience?

Your content marketing strategy must start with your targeted audience. By determining what you are selling and who you are selling your products or services to, you can have a better understanding, allowing your content to be relevant and effective. Also, you should consider things such as your customers’ demographics, their particular needs, as well as their online behavior. Our Internet marketing team can create content designed around both your business’s needs and your customers’.

What Kind of Content Is Your Audience Looking For?

It is important to consider the type of content your audience will be looking for. Do they prefer the use of videos or articles? It is important to ensure you are including relevant forms of content on your website, which will ultimately help drive traffic to your site. You can also use a variety of forms of content, especially when your targeted audience is composed of various types of buyer personas.

Do You Have A Blog?

One of the most popular content marketing strategies today is blogging. Blogging provides your business with the opportunity to not only create more index-able pages but also provide you with more credibility within the search engine rankings, increasing your ranking amongst your competitors.

In order for your business to be successful in today’s technological world, it is important that you implement an effective content marketing and Internet marketing campaign. For more information, or help developing your content marketing strategy, contact Windy City Strategies today.

5 Reasons Your Business Needs A Facebook Account

Social media plays an important role in advertising and marketing today’s businesses, especially when it comes to small companies. With more close to two billion active Facebook accounts, the most of any social media platform, there are several reasons your business needs a Facebook account:

1. Build Relationships with your Customers: Not only do businesses that use Facebook have a good way to connect with their customers, but it is an effective method to spread the most important word-of-mouth referrals. By building these relationships, businesses can personalize their marketing efforts based on their audience, building offers and promotions based on their customers’ demands.

2. Gain Exposure: In addition to building relationships and spreading your name, your business will be generating awareness amongst others, free of charge. With every “like” or “share” of your business’s page or post, the greater your social media exposure will be, ultimately increasing the chance that your page will be seen by hundreds of people.

3. Increase Traffic to your Website: There are a couple of ways you can drive traffic to your business’ Facebook page. One of the most effective ways is when your users utilize FourSquare to “check-in” to your place of business, which lets their Facebook friends know that they are at your business location. Another way is by sharing any of the products or services they may have purchased from your business on their Facebook account.

4. Advertise your Business: Facebook allows you the ability to advertise on their network, allowing you to effectively target your customers. With Facebook’s Custom Audiences service, you can target your customers using email lists or you can use Partner Categories, which targets a specific industry, to better influence your desired audience.

5. Provide High Quality Customer Service: There is nothing more important to a business that input from their customers. By utilizing a Facebook page, your business can reach out to their audience to generate suggestions for future products or services, solicit feedback, or most importantly, show your customers how much you value them, making you stand out form your competition by offering high quality customer service.

Windy City Strategies specializes in customized Internet marketing solutions for businesses big and small. For more information, or to get started on an Internet marketing campaign to boost your business, contact us today.

 

Starting An Internet Marketing Campaign? Follow These Helpful Tips

An effective Internet marketing campaign plays a huge role in attracting potential clients to your website. This not only increases business and potential revenue for you, but it also enhances the branding and validity of your business’s products or services.

Starting an Internet marketing campaign may seem intimidating, however, our professional Internet marketers at Windy City Strategies have some helpful tips to help get you started:

Tip #1: Consult with an Internet marketing firm. Not only will they help you start an effective Internet marketing campaign, but they will also have the ability to implement a plan that is right for your specific business and needs.

Tip # 2: Understand the importance of SEO. Search engine optimization (SEO) is important in creating an effective Internet marketing campaign. By improving and promoting your website amongst search engines, you can better drive traffic to your website.

Tip #3: Create a blog. Blogs are a great way to not only interact with your current potential customers, but it also helps you to become an expert in your industry. Blogs are also beneficial in creating more pages for your website, which also helps you to be found easier amongst the search engines.

Tip #4: Write a press release. Another great way to gain exposure is through a press release. Online press releases about your business are also a great way to be found in the search engines. This is also helpful in announcing any news or partnerships that you may have.

Tip #5: Have a user-friendly website. By ensuring your visitors can access your website from any device, you can produce a positive and user-friendly experience, which will bring your customers and potential clients back to your website.

For more information on how we can help boost your business with our customized Internet marketing campaigns, contact us at Windy City Strategies today.

Social Media and Your Small Business

Many small businesses are utilizing social media outlets these days in order to drive their traffic and increase their sales. If you have not yet considered joining the social media world for your marketing needs, you should consider doing so now.

Here are other ways social media can benefit your small business:

Social media allows for a greater business outreach: With social media platforms, such as Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter, you are better able to get your business out there to the world, reaching customers near and far, as opposed to just locally.

Social media can help to build your reputation: Not only is social media a good way to manage your online presence, but it is also the perfect opportunity to gain your customers’ trust and loyalty. By giving your business a social media presence, more customers will be inclined to trust your brand, as well as look to you over your competition, especially if they are not as socially present as you are.

Social media can help with customer support: By being available 24/7 with social media outlets, such as Facebook, you can assure your customers that they can reach you when necessary. However, it is critical that you address your customers’ posts and messages as soon as possible in order to maintain your customer service reputation.

Social media can sell your business: Not only can you better advertise your product or services by using social media, but you can also provide opportunities for your customers to purchase your products or services as well. This will provide a much more pleasurable experience for your customers, which will likely keep them coming back.

If you are interested in learning more about what Windy City Strategies can offer your business’s internet marketing strategy, then contact us today.

Get Faster Results With Pay Per Click

A solid Internet marketing campaign plays an essential role in ensuring your business can be found when you are being searched for on the search engines. With there being a variety of options when it comes to search engine optimization, there really is one Internet marketing campaign that will give you the results you need…and as soon as possible.

What Is Pay Per Click?

Pay per click (PPC) advertising is an Internet marketing technique in which businesses place paid ads on the search engines, paying for them when a user clicks on it. When your ad is clicked on, the user will be automatically directed to your website. However, in order for this Internet marketing method to be effective, a pay per click campaign must be effectively managed and performed over a period of time.

Benefits Of Pay Per Click

There are a several reasons why you may want to consider using a pay per click campaign, including the following:

  • Affordability- Since PPC campaigns are not only tailored to your budget, but you essentially pay per click on your ad.
  • Faster Results- Unlike organic search engine methods, PPC campaigns show almost immediate results since your ad will automatically receive top placement.
  • Real-time Tracking- With your PPC campaign, constant monitoring of your campaign will be performed. We will track things like the keywords that are, and are not, working, conversion rates, and which ads are driving the most traffic.
  • Exposure- Since your ad will be placed on Google, Yahoo, and Bing, your ad will be visible on well-known and reliable search engines, which reaches the vast majority of Internet users.
  • Target Your Customers- By placing a specific and eye-catching ad, you can directly target your customers and draw in only qualified and relevant traffic to your site.

It is important to know that building and maintaining a successful pay per click advertising campaign can be a difficult task, especially when you don’t understand how to manage these services.

This is why it is important that you only hire an experienced Internet marketing and pay per click management firm, such as Windy City Strategies. For more information, contact us today.

Does Your Business Need A Website?

Many small business owners make the mistake of not having a website to sell their products and services, often missing out on potential revenue by their ability to broaden their exposure and increasing their audience, giving them a competitive edge.

In today’s technological world, it is especially important that small businesses are using things such as social media and websites in to help their customers and clients find them on the internet. Failure to do so can be detrimental to their business.

If your business does not have a website, then you should get one immediately! There are so many advantages to having one, including the following:

The potential to gain more customers. Your small business can be missing out on a lot of customers, especially if they can’t reach you. In fact, about 80% of Internet users in the United States from the ages of 14 and up will use the Internet to look up products and/or services.

Gives your business much needed online presence. In today’s world, the likeliness that people are going to pick up a phone book to search for your business is not great, instead most will go straight to the Internet to search for it. If they don’t see you listed online, they may think you are no longer in business, or do not even know that your business exists. Having an online presence will show your customers you do care, and you want them to continue coming to you for merchandise. That’s why having a website is very important for your business!

Increase your profits. Simply by being visible online, you can exponentially increase your profits by making your products and services readily available to everyone. Have you thought about the profits that you can potentially be making if you increase your user base?

You can better market your business. With making yourself available online, you are better able to retrieve feedback from emails, online surveys and social media functions, telling you how good your marketing is doing. There is also technologies that you can use to determine the type of people who visit your site, and what products or services they are searching for, using this information to build better business marketing strategies.

If you are need of a website for your business or help with your Internet marketing strategy, contact Windy City Strategies for more information today!

Windy City Strategies Named One Of The Top Digital Marketing Agencies

Windy City Strategies was named one of the top 19 digital marketing agencies in the Chicago area for 2017 by Expertise.com.

In order to be at the top of the list, the digital marketing companies that were reviewed had to meet certain criteria, such as:

  1. Reputation- A history of outstanding customer service and happy customers.
  2. Credibility- Building customer confidence with licensing, accreditations, and awards.
  3. Experience- Based on years of experience and education.
  4. Availability- Approachable and responsive to their customers.
  5. Professionalism- Provides service with honesty, reliability, and respect.

According to Expertise, Windy City Strategies made the list due to the following:

“Windy City Strategies has been one of the city’s premier digital marketing firms for more than a decade, providing targets solutions and innovative tools designed to help businesses succeed and grow. The award-winning company’s range of services includes customized website design, local and national search engine optimization, and pay-per-click advertising to draw in revenue and reach broader markets. The company also offers a free AdWords audit to first-time customers, giving businesses valuable insights into ways to improve current online tools and strategies.”

If you are interested in learning more about why Windy City Strategies is one of the best digital marketing companies in the Chicagoland area, then contact us for more information today!

Using Social Media For Your Business? The Do’s And Dont’s

Social media outlets are a great way to develop a meaningful connection between your business and your customers and a great way to give you a greater online presence. In fact, most people utilize a source of social media to research your company, what you have to offer, as well as other customers’ experiences.

However, not everyone is using social media appropriately and effectively for their business. This is why it is important to understand how to use social media for your business, doing it correctly, and avoiding making potentially detrimental mistakes.

1. What are you representing? Not only is it important to know your brand and what you have to offer, but you need to identity who you are selling your business to, especially when it comes to speaking on any social media platform. Since you are the one who knows your product, production, company or brand best, be sure to represent it appropriately, or you may lose potential business.

2. Who is your target audience? It’s important to know whom you are targeting. What do they do? When do they get online? Any savvy social media expert will be able to figure these things out and understand their goals, which will allow you to see what is working, and what isn’t.

3. Respond efficiently and appropriately. Let’s face it, you will likely be faced with controversy at some point when using social media. However, the way you handle it will be key to the end result. Since you don’t want to find yourself without a sense of what’s coming next, or responding to a controversy in a way that isn’t professional or consistent, it is important that you remain true to your policies and your brand. Good customer service can play a key role in appealing to customers and clients.

4. Make meaningful connections. Avoid treating your audience as a subject, not as an object. Once you do, your work on social media simply becomes a dialogue. Remember to observe the changes in your audience, ensuring you are learning about them by communicating with them on your social media outlets daily, which will make a positive impact on your audience, developing those meaningful relationships.

5. Understand the difference between social media for business vs. for personal use. Simply because you have a personal Facebook page does not meant that you will k now how to use Facebook for your business needs. Social media for businesses are not the same thing as understanding the scope of what Facebook ads and Twitter-promoted posts can do. Because these platforms are refining and changing all the time, it is important that you have an expert on your team that can help you make your campaign effective.

For more information on how we can help market your business online, or for help with your social media marketing campaign, contact Windy City Strategies today.

 

Looking To Hire An SEO Agency?

Search engine optimization, or often referred to as SEO, is the process of improving and promoting your website within the major search engines, such as Google, Yahoo and Bing, increasing your visibility online, and bringing traffic to your website.

And with SEO of being of utmost importance to your business, finding a quality SEO agency can be perilous. From things like budget, to timeframe, to your specific needs, there are many things to consider when choosing the right SEO agency.

To make finding the right SEO agency easier for you, the professionals at Windy City Strategies suggests the following steps to ease your business’s search while looking to hire an SEO agency:

Determine your needs. From content marketing, to internal and external links, to the way your website is coded, there are many SEO strategies that can help your business succeed. This is why it is critical to understand your business’s needs before choosing the right SEO agency. And if you do not know what your business needs when it comes to SEO, be sure to consult with the agency, who can help to determine what will be most effective for you.

Determine your budget. Be upfront with your SEO agency, letting them know what your business’s budget is, as well as any basic and essential industry information. It is critical that you know what your business can afford, determining what each agency can do with your budget before making a decision.

Review your choices. From other business owners, to fellow industry people, to other reputable industry leaders online, be sure to use your resources before making a decision. With a plethora of SEO agencies around, it can be helpful to determine what their worth is by reading reviews, understanding their mission and successes, as well as seeing how they interact with the public. Also, don’t be afraid to ask for referrals and references, which can be extremely helpful in making your decision, especially if you are having a hard time narrowing agencies down.

A good SEO agency has all the tools necessary to help your business succeed. For more information on how Windy City Strategies can help you, contact us today!

Are You Investing In A Google AdWords Campaign?

Gaining leads can be a difficult task for small businesses, especially when competing against more established and well known businesses. This often leaves these businesses wondering what they can do to effectively gain an audience, and grow their business.

Perhaps one of the best ways to do this is by investing in a Google AdWords campaign.

What Is Google AdWords?

Google AdWords is Google’s exclusive advertising program that allows businesses to advertise online, targeting the people that are using Google’s search engine, an its affiliates, to search for your products and services.

With a Google AdWords campaign, you must bid on keywords that are related to your products or services. When a person plugs in your keywords into the search engine, your business’s ad will appear as a sponsored link.

What Are The Benefits Of A Google AdWords Campaign?

Big or small, regardless of the size of your business, an effective Google AdWords campaign can drive traffic to your website every day, which not only increases your audience, but your profitability as well.

You only pay for results. When a business advertises on Google AdWords, they have the ability to only pay when someone clicks on their ad. This guarantees that the money that you’re paying is at least generating visits to your website, which allows for immediate interaction with customers, hopefully producing immediate results, or conversions, as well.

You can track your results. Google allows its users to track a variety of metrics. The most important of these metrics, however, is the conversions. Conversions can help to determine the effectiveness of pay per click campaigns, making it easier for businesses to track the return on their investment with a Google AdWords campaign.

You can time your ads. Advertising on Google AdWords allows you to advertise to your audience, when you want. With ad scheduling, you have the ability to show your ads to customers’ at the most ideal times, targeting them on specific days and hours, as well as increase keyword bids for specific days and times.

You can gain web traffic. Even if your website is effectively optimized to appeal to the search engines, there is the possibility that you are not ranking as high as some of your competitors. Since this can put you at a disadvantage, it is important to find a way to gain your website more traffic, which will help to increase your rankings. This is where Google AdWords can help you to draw an audience, attracting them to your business and website.

You are in control. With all of the tools, features, and options that are provided, the amount of control that you have is one of the biggest benefits advertisers can have when investing in a Google AdWords campaign. From the ability to set a budget, to being able to view and act on real-time data, as well as create tests to analyze the most effective landing page and ad copy, Google Adwords allows you to control your own advertising campaign.

It is important to realize that Google AdWords requires a lot of time and patience. If you interested in a Google AdWords campaign, or would like our Google AdWords professionals to manage your account, contact Windy City Strategies today!