Don’t be afraid: It’s not that scary!

Cute Ghost

Does Google AdWords scare you? Don’t be afraid, with a little understanding you’ll find that’s it actually very friendly.  There seems to be a lot of mystery around AdWords and for anyone setting out to run a campaign I highly recommend that you watch this short tutorial.  You will also find the Google AdWords website offers simple, step by step instructions and video tutorials to help you the whole way though. In my experience, there are two things that people tend to find particularly frightening when it comes to Google AdWords.  The first being the budget and the second is understanding Google Analytics.  For more insight…keep reading.


One of the benefits of using Google AdWords is that setting the budget is entirely up to you.  This means that if you are considering using AdWords as one of your advertising platforms you can run a short trial that is relatively low risk.   More information about setting your budget. 

A word of warning. As a person working on a contractual basis or running the campaign of behalf of someone, it is unlikely that you will be the person who enters the billing details.  Google AdWords budgeting is flexible in the sense that you can change it on a daily basis and  in the words of AdWords  “helps you maximize your return on investment (ROI) by looking out for days when search traffic is higher, and then showing your ads more often on those days. When this happens, your total daily cost could be up to 20% more than your usual daily budget – but AdWords prevents your campaign from overspending for the month as a whole based on a monthly charging limit”.

However, what it won’t do is stop charging you if you have not selected the option for the campaign to stop after your total budget has been reached.  Therefore it is imperative that you triple check that an end date has been set in the billing department and pause your ads once you have reached your limit (just to be sure!).  If you’ve heard horror stories about limits getting blown believe them, it is a tiny oversight that cost cost you a lot of money if you’re not prudent.   More tips on how to avoid Digital Marketing Horror Stories

Google Analytics

I would highly recommend any business that is running an AdWords campaign to connect to Google Analytics as it will be a valuable tool when you are evaluating the success of the campaign.  In the simplest form, Google Analytics is a tool that is used to track the behaviour of people visiting your website.

It provides real insight that will help you to build your audience, sell and convert customers and perhaps most importantly, provides real information that you need to act on your insights   Read more here  One of the greatest things about Google Analytics is that if your website  generates 10 million or fewer hits per month, then Google Analytics is free, making it ideal for any small business. Even if you are not running an AdWords campaign I suggest you sign up –  It’s a no brainer really!

I hope that you have found this helpful and in my opinion, the best way to understand Google AdWords is to jump in and get going.

Good luck!


Cat got your tongue? Blogging for beginners.


When building a brand, it is widely recognised that blogging plays an important role which is why the following article How to Write Interesting Content for a “Boring” Topic is a must read for any marketer facing a case of writers block.

Industry expert Patrick, says that in some ways blogging is the new marketing as it it’s a way to develop a community, grow a loyal fan base and build a brand.  His article How Blogging has affected Business and Marketing and why it’s essential discusses this concept in depth and provides a helpful insight into how blogging can help a business build their audience. Therefore, it is evident for a business to improve their digital marketing, or for a business they must put on their blogging hat.

Sometimes it can seem daunting staring at a blank page but if you follow these basic writing guidelines you’ll be well on your way to developing great content for even the most “watching paint dry” type topic.

If you are clutching at straws about what exacting to write about start by asking yourself some questions about the topic based on the good old Who, What, When, Where, Why and How approach.  You may find that by asking the right question you are motivated to write some compelling copy.

Once you have written your first blog, you will find that it gets easier over time and that you’ll develop your own style and perhaps take a few more risks with your writing. The key is that practice makes perfect, so aim to write on a weekly basis.  Here is a fantastic article that will provide you with A Simple Plan for Writing One Powerful Piece of Online Content per Week

I’d love to hear from other bloggers out there, how often do you blog?

Protect your personal brand. No more awkward selfies – Please.

You know that cringe feeling you get when watching bad auditions of American Idol?

That’s exactly how I feel when people post awkward selfies on Facebook.  So stop it.

It’s awkward because it is often clear that they have given no thought on how these seemingly innocent pics are sending a really clear message about their personal brand.  Flippant or subjective comments or impulsive posts on a night out can paint you in a very bad light, and will most certainly come back to haunt you. Gosh, even Dr Phil thinks it’s serious, heed is warning in his article how your online profile can sabotage your future. 

Sam Richer also warns about the danger of over sharing in his article A dozen ways to build your personal brand in an online world and believes that “In today’s information rich and easy publishing world, when you post anything online you are disseminating your message to the world and, by default, you are promoting your brand—your personal brand” (2013).  

I completely agree with this statement and think that it is a very important message for students wishing to enter the workforce to understand.

Don’t worry though, it’s not all doom and gloom, in fact the great thing is that once you have understood this message (that it is not a sensible idea to post inappropriate or subjective contact via Social Media), you can actually use it to your ADVANTAGE.  Just follow Sams great tips or gain more insight by reading this article on building equity in your personal brand.  

This information is not only relevant to people already in the workforce, but is also applicable for a student looking to enter the field of Digital Marketing.  Imagine going into the interview feeling confident and pumped knowing that you digital portfolio was top notch and that it represented your personal brand in a positive light.

If you want to know  what to expect in said interview, then read this fantastic article 12 Questions to Separate Social Media Experts From Pretenders.

Netiquette: Think before you type.


How embarrassing. Samsung have been caught with their hand in the cookie jar recently in a terribly shameful defamation case.  If you’re wanting to come across as sneaky vindictive sabotages’ there is no better way than being busted for falsifying comments about your main competitors.  Read more here 

I would have thought that this sort of carry on would have been quite an obvious No No for anyone with a shred of common sense but apparently not! Which leads me to consider the Dos and Don’ts of online etiquette.

From an individual perspective, one must be aware that there is a difference between interacting with friends on Facebook and interacting as a student or professional on an online forum. Madison College has complied a useful Netiquette guide that will ensure you are convey and communicating your message in an appropriate way.

From a business perspective, as wonderful as social media can be, it also opens you and your company up to ANY customer feedback. Therefore, it is absolutely crucial that you know how to deal with negative feedback.  If you deal with negative feedback in an inappropriate way or chose to ignore or …gasp…DELETE the comments, be warned of the wrath of the consumer. More than often all your customer wants is the right to be heard and acknowledged and they are actually providing you with an opportunity. An opportunity to FIX their problem. Social Media & the Consumer: How to Handle Negative Feedback is a fantastic article by Rachel Strella that will help you whether any social media storm.

I suggest you keep it on file!

Don’t wanna be a cowboy BABY: Social Media Experts

It had been two full years of me badgering my boyfriend about his businesses Facebook page. I couldn’t understand why he was not as enthusiastic about it as I was? Couldn’t he understand that for a small business it was the PERFECT low cost marketing platform?!

And, as it turned out, he couldn’t. After another frustrating conversation he finally said, “Here’s the thing, I don’t use it myself, I don’t really want too, I don’t have the time, and quite simply, I just don’t GET it.  I don’t get how Facebook can help my business”. He spoke the truth of what allot of business owners feel, and it was at that moment I was certain that there is indeed a place for Social Media Experts (how to spot a social media cowboy!)  in business. Not just someone who spends all day online, but a proper expert.

According to the article Are Social Media “Experts” Worthless? “90% of websites are wretched. 90% of Facebook pages are wretched. 90% of content marketing programs are wretched. 90% of social media-based customer support is wretched” this opens a HUGE opportunity for anyone who isn’t, well, wretched! If you are the Social Media Exert in your firm, or aspire to be one, the key to being a success is to make sure you know your stuff!

You can also sign up for a free workshop here Internet Marketing for Smart People

So, no matter what you call yourself, get clued up quick. A rose by any other name still smells as sweet right?

Everyone's a Social Media Expert

Everyone’s a Social Media Expert

No more cold calling? Facebook lead generation tips.

Click here for more lead generation tips

Considering myself to be a bit of a sales buff I was a tad embarrassed upon the realization that a humongous chunk of my sales savvy knowledge was totally missing.

Facebook suggest that there a four key ways in which a business will successfully use Facebook  and I was right with them! I understood utilising Facebook to develop and grow the brand, to connect with your market, to engage your audience and to drive sales.

Wait – what was that last bit – drive SALES?  I’d often used Facebook to promote a service, event, special promotion or offer but, and here is the honest truth, I’d never even THOUGHT about using it as a platform to generate sales leads

So you can imagine my glee when I came across this article on hub spot about how to use Facebook to generate sales leads for your business. Along with defining what direct and indirect sales leads actually are this article is important because it recommends six ways to capture leads on Facebook.

These are:

1) Use Calls-to-Action in Cover Photos

2) Include Links in Captions

3) Host a Fecebook Chat

4) Make Facebook Events for Webinars

5) Use Targeted Advertising to Extend Your Content’s Reach

6) Build Forms on Tabs

Knowing how to capture leads on Facebook is a significant way that a business can improve their digital marketing because it directly impacts profitability (in terms of lead generation and SALES)

Number six requires some skill and a little more expertise, but in basic terms a Form on Facebook is similar to your websites Landing Page.  One thing that is particularly important to understand in this context is ensuring you have the appropriate Landing Pages  to gather your potential customers info and to ensure to have a sales strategy to follow up the leads.

There is no point putting all the energy to get them if you are not going to follow up and turn them into SALES.

Cutting through the competition: Effective keywords in subject lines.

We’ve all done it; you open your emails in the morning and ruthlessly cull anything that doesn’t appeal, based on primarily one thing – the subject line.

The ‘right’ subject line can make or break the success of your Electronic Direct Marketing Campaign (EDM).  So, how do you ensure that YOUR email is the one that your customer actually opens?  The following article explores The Most (and Least) Effective Keywords in Email Subject Lines.

The subject of well – subject lines is absolutely crucial for any Marketer to understand. Marketing expert Mark Brownlow asks How much email do people really get?  The answer is hard to pinpoint, but on average, a Hotmail Inbox will receive between three to four marketing emails per day, meaning that competition is fierce (at the height of my consumer email fatigue I once received 42 marketing emails in the period of 48 hours, motivating me to hit UNSUBSCRIBE).

Therefore, using Keywords in your email subject lines is the way to ensure you cut through your competition to reach your customer and increase that conversion rate!

One factor that is often overlooked is the financial resources that your business as actually spent to get that EDM out there in the first place.  You had the marketing team come up with the concept ($$) who then translated it to the graphics department ($$) who then put a design together ($$) which was sent back and forth several times before it was finally approved ($$) Sound familiar? And THEN you had the cost of sending it.   So essentially – by not using the most effective keywords in your subject line, not only are you not reaching your customers – you are using A LOT of resources in the process (you may as well individually call each person!)

To improve your digital marketing, other than understanding what keywords work (See this related article from Jericho for ones to avoid) you must keep subject lines short, to the point, and accurately explains the subject matter of your email. It helps your recipients decide whether the email is relevant to them, and therefore whether they will take the time to open it and read more.