Building Social Capital For Entrepreneurial Success

An overwhelming majority of the seven billion people in the world think that becoming wealthy is prerequisite for being happy. Hence if you cannot afford all the necessities of life at a particular point in time, you’ll have no good reason to be happy.

Contrary to this popular thinking, a 75 year study at Harvard, presumed to be the longest in history, revealed some opposing insights. See the video above.

Could it be true that our lives will always be doomed to misery if we don’t have enough? Or the reality could just be our mind playing trick on our life status and expectations.

Maybe it is just society that forced this and other such beliefs on us at a young age.

As advised by many veterans, the one way to protect your life against the extreme highs and lows that comes with active entrepreneurship is to get a secure job with good pay, benefits and promotional prospects. That is if you one of the few that are often qualified for such jobs.

However, we all know that these kinds of jobs are limited in supply regardless of the country you live in. So the security may as well exist only as mere illusions of good life.

For one reason, the only constant thing that had been proven to us time and time again is change.

An interesting question that comes to mind at this point is; could there be something else that makes human beings happy without being wealthy? That’s exactly what this 75 year Harvard study is all about.

Without doubt, you and I know that wealth does not consist of financial resources only.

In line with this thinking, 78% of entrepreneurs in a separate study (Informal Innovation: Entrepreneurship and Informal Communities) found that networking contributed immensely to their success.

Based on this fact, the implication is that people can as well have unequal access or possession of what some experts refer to as ‘social capital’.

Think about the early stage challenges of building a team, product validation, funding, marketing and difference that good relationships can make. Just like money, if you don’t have it you don’t have it period.

Specifically on happiness, here is what Richard Branson had to say:

Many assume that my business success brought me happiness. But the way I see it, I am success because I am happy’.

Now you know better – the relationship between good relationship and happiness, which is important for success, go put that knowledge to work. Take this away from here – relationships are bridges. Build more of it, and you’ll be better expensive sacrifices.

From Nothing To Something

entrepreneurship blogs in nigeriaHow does the idea of ‘one less stranger’ make you feel? Now imagine the world without limits. Yes, pause for a minute and do it. Now, not later. What if you were told that world doesn’t exist.

And then you believed it.

Like many others, I saw these few words: one less stranger inside Airbnb’s website.

See this video from the founder.

This was the theme of a brand awareness campaign across social different social media channels. And it feels like a movement too. At a point, I just thought that the perspective and belief behind these lines were exactly how the idea originated from day one.

In Brian’s words:

‘This sentiment is exactly where our crazy, wonderful social experiment started.

Makes me wondering once more, why Einstein said that imagination is more important than knowledge.

Question: how often do you indulge yourself to rediscover the world (your circle of influence), not as it is but how different it could become?

As for me, I think this periodic indulgence matters as much as the things we bring from there to this physical world we live in. What about you?

And now you are here reading my alpha state perspectives, I’m 100% sure it is with a device that came from someone’s imagination to the physical world you know.

Dare To Think Different.

Staffing Agency Guide To Google Adwords Remarketing

Build a website. Start a business blog. Leverage social media. You’ve done all that. And now, you still need better marketing strategy for staffing firms. Keep exploring further.

I don’t know where you got all of the ideas you have tried in terms of effective recruitment agency marketing.

Here is what I know. While the tips often suggested are good, most of your colleagues who suggest them often do not have full knowledge and experience of how to put these things to fruitful work.

Building recruitment website is good. Consistent business blogging is beneficial. Free social media posting is also good.

The problem is that majority of contents written by recruitment experts don’t have specific details on how to implement each of these online marketing strategies effectively.

Note, I am a consultant just like you. But what I do is digital marketing, not recruitment and others.

Hidden Content

In order to avoid paying for professional digital marketing services, many business owners choose the free and easy path. But in practical terms, free and easy doesn’t always work.

In other words, filling your pipeline with low quality, non converting leads won’t bring the exact type of clients or size of revenue you want.

For those people who understand the inseparability of risk and opportunity, they use Google adwords every other day and month. A search for ‘staffing agencies Liverpool’ showed this sample below.

google adwords remarketing strtageyAnd for others who invest in this proven marketing strategy, remarketing helps to increase effectiveness, quality lead generation rate and revenue.

And that is what we’ll be discussing throughout this post. First things first.

The Benefits Of Google Adwords Advertising

Purchase Intent: When people do active search for the price of services they need, the purchase intent is usually high and obvious. Think of adding words like affordable, price, cost and fees to the search terms that describe what you are selling.

Matching Context: Let’s look at location for example. You may assume for some reasons that every business in your target niche have the need for what you are selling. Then you’ll set off reaching out to people who are demographically qualified, but not interested or can’t afford your services. Paid search advertising helps to attract only the people interested.

Immediacy: whether online or offline, interruptive advertising breaks attention pattern. Consequently, it annoys potential clients in moments of personal engagement. Search engine marketing reaches out and attracts prospects exactly the time they are searching for your services.

As a testament to how well it works for many, not all of the people that use it, almost 82% of Google’s $21 billion revenue in 2016 came from advertising; mostly adwords.

And because Google owns around 74% of global search engine market, the businesses spending this money include the ones in your market niche and location. Just do a search for ‘staffing agency fees in your location’ and you will find more.

What Is Google Adwords Remarketing

This is an online marketing strategy that displays advertisements to people who have visited your website home page or specific page.

When interested prospects come to your website and leave without converting into qualified leads or paying customers, you can use remarketing to follow them along their purchase journey.

Interestingly, this can be done across desktop, mobile and tablet devices.

If you understand the concept of buyer journey, you’ll know why less than 3% of website visitors convert on their very first visit.

Interestingly, many business owners who operate mostly offline still assume that their most qualified prospects don’t spend time online. However, what they don’t know is that many high ticket deals that end up offline actually originate online.

Beyond my personal opinion, Bright Local reported in their blog that 77% of local searches on smartphone lead to offline business visits within 24 hours.

Thus, when interested prospects who visited your website from different online destinations leave without converting, you can bring back a percentage of these people with Google adwords remarketing strategy.

The fact is that those who spend money on remarketing and those who don’t are not at equal competitive advantage.

How Google Adwords Remarketing Work

With a snippet of code placed on your website, you’ll start building a list of people who visited your home or other specific pages. By building this audience list, you have additional opportunity to bring back a percentage of previous visitors.

The interesting thing is that this can be done even though they have not signed up for your newsletter.

So do not think again that newsletter or contact form is the only way to generate leads from your website. You need quality traffic first.

Now, here is how Google adwords remarketing work specifically to help maximize ROI on marketing budget.

First is the standard display remarketing. After placing the code which could be generated from Google adwords or analytics, your ad would be set to display in form of banners or text on the website of people participating in Google display network.

This is perfect for growing brand awareness within your location and niche market. When these previous visitors continue to visit other websites (over 2 million affiliate websites) they will continue to see your advert across desktop, tablet and smartphone devices.

Second is the remarketing list for search ads. After set up, this one shows as standard search advertisements that appear on top or below organic results.

google adwords remarketing

When people continue to search for services related to what they viewed on your website, your remarketing adverts will continue to show up.

One key benefit here is that you can use 100+ keywords to retarget them.

For instance, 800 prospects searched for ‘recruitment consultant service fees’, then visited and left your website without converting. When they continue their search for other keywords related to this one, you can use same to reach and bring some of them back.

Here is an images that explain more on how google adwords remarketing work.

google adwords remarketing list for search adsThe third option is email list remarketing. Upload a list of emails. Set up your remarketing campaign.

When people that own these email addresses sign into Google properties, (Google search, Gmail, Youtube), adwords remarketing campaign can be shown to them.

Now let’s say you have 3000 emails in your list of new leads, previous clients, employees and partners. You can segment your list and show relevant ads to them.

Video remarketing is the fourth option. Video is one form of content that often have higher engagement among people who are serious about brand distinction. By creating a streamlined funnel, your campaigns can be shown to only the people who watched a video on your website.

No doubt, video makes influential impressions. Leverage video contents to generate leads for your staffing agency services.

Here is one google adwords remarketing case study of 239.7% ROI you can take a look at.

Business Blogging And Remarketing

If you have been into consistent business blogging for your recruitment services firm, you are probably generating a considerable volume of organic search engine traffic.

Depending on the quality of traffic you do get with regard to buyer keyword optimization, remarketing will actually help to improve your conversion rate if done properly.

For instance, with Google analytics you can build an audience of people who spend a specified amount of time on your website (or specific pages) and left without converting.

As you may already know, longer time on site is a positive engagement metric.

Within 30 – 540 days, your remarketing ads could be running to reach and convert a percentage of these highly engaged lists of qualified prospects.

And you don’t need to sign them into your newsletter or other lead magnet before doing that.

Contrary to all of the things discussed above, some people actually advice against using paid advertising to promote your consulting business, brand or blog. In one of his articles inside Inc; magazine, Lou Dubois stated that:

As a consultant, if you are starting out, you may feel the need to advertise your business in newspapers and or via Google adwords. But be wary of this approach because some (in my opinion, not everyone) will view it as a cheapening of your brand. And when you are a consultant, you are selling your name and skill. If you have to spend money to do that (sell), are you really good as you say you are?’

While this may be true for some people and in some instances, it doesn’t hold true in all cases.

What the people that give and buy into such advice don’t know very well is the difference between brand awareness campaigns and direct response marketing.

If you are starting out and you depend 100% on growing brand awareness sorry for you. When your account goes in red line, you’ll understand the need to think, act and learn faster by taking good calculated risks.

And in case you are not comfortable spending your time on promotional social media activities that produce nothing beyond useless metrics, the time may be now and not later.

After reading the same article, someone wrote this in the comment section.

Comments like the one above and other reasons explain why some proactive consultants are searching for keywords like the ones shown below.

how to get consulting clients fast

The fact is that there is competition in almost any niche you look into.

One thing worthy of note is this:

Entitlement mentality and passive hope won’t get you anywhere farther than where you are now’.

Now here is what I want you to do. Go and visit 10 or more websites of staffing consultants or firms you know in your niche and location.

Observe if they have retargeting strategy currently working for them. You will know by doing repeat search for related keywords in Google or visiting other websites participating in Google display network.

If none is doing it, well; you could be the first leveraging this competitive marketing strategy in your niche.

Note, there is nothing that stops you from combining brand awareness campaigns and direct response marketing if you know how to leverage technology, content and data.

Setting Your Adwords Remarketing Budget

At the end, what you spend on Google adwords will be determined to a great extent by you.

But what I have seen in many cases is that remarketing often has lower cost per click in comparison to standard campaigns. Obviously, this is a unique kind of high value traffic.

The other core determinant of Google adwords advertising cost are the following.

Market competition is the factor that determines how much you pay for each click or prospect brought back to your website.

Using Google keyword planner to do some research will give you an idea of estimated cost per click in your target niche and location.

Who runs your ads? If you are the person creating and managing your remarketing campaigns, then you will be practically paying less than others. So you won’t be paying Google adwords consulting fee to an expert or agency.

With a full time staff doing it, the cost becomes part of your overall operating expenditure.

In a case where you don’t have the time and expertise to run the campaigns properly, your next best option is to hire adwords expert.

With that you’ll be leveraging on the experience the person or agency had built up over some years.

From many different perspectives this is better than taking miscalculated risks with your marketing budget and losing a considerable amount of money in the process.

The exception is a situation where you have some funds to learn by real practice.

As for the adwords consulting service fees, there are many variables at play. Think of factors like location of the expert, level of experience, niche market, size of business and budget involved.

From whichever perspective you look at it, these things cannot be equal in all cases.

For example, a business that earns $1000 per sale can pay $50 to get a sale easier than another business that earns only $50 per sale.

However, this is not to say that adwords remarketing doesn’t work for low priced products or service.

Most experts and even business owners prefer to pay flat monthly retainer fee that range from $200 – $5000+. Once again, it depends on location, niche market and size of business and budget.

Some people works with a fixed percentage of paid search engine advertising budget. This takes into account the fluctuating workload that could be required in each passing month.

The most common numbers I see falls between 5 – 20% of monthly ad budget.

To maximize ROI, what I normally do here at Weblife is to fix 10 – 30% of overall Google adwords advertising budget for remarketing.

If you want to explore paid search as a marketing strategy for recruitment consulting firms, you should consider these numbers too.

Conclusion

Getting website traffic is good. Filling your lead generation pipeline is also good. But if a frustrating majority of your leads are not converting as much as you want, then that could be a feedback signal that you need to do something different.

The other way to look at is to do the same Google adwords you have been doing; this time differently.

If you take action to explore further, powerful audience segmentation capabilities exist within Google adwords remarketing.

Hidden Content

For example your website audience can be segmented based on location, interest, on site behavior, purchase history, email list and many other interesting factors.

Remember to do some tests and find out if your competitors are doing remarketing right now. Find out from Google search and visit 10 competitors in your target niche and location.

Visit their websites and leave without becoming a lead. Then, visit Facebook and other websites, search for the same keywords and observe if they actually invest in this widely untapped competitive advantage.

In case you are one of those generating a considerable volume of organic search engine traffic from consistent business blogging strategy, then you already have a leg ahead of many.

Like I always say, good knowledge is half the battle.

Share your current search marketing challenges and experience in the comment section. You can as well join our Facebook group – The Search Tribe to discuss, discover and leverage working strategies to attract only the people in need of your products/services – Now.

How To Increase Hotel Bookings With Google Search Marketing

Obviously, anyone interested in how to increase hotel bookings has acknowledged their current problem – low booking rate. And now, here you are seeking for practical solution.

So you’ve got 20 – 100 hotel rooms available for daily revenue generation. But the low booking rate poses a great challenge.

Wait; there could be an underlying bigger issue.

The profit margin recorded after deduction of monthly operating cost of round the clock power system, personnel and possibly Wifi falls far below expectation.

Interestingly, if your means of livelihood, personal growth and happiness depends on this hospitality enterprise, then there is a need to do something differently better.

However, when your daily schedule is filled with only the responsibilities of managing existing resources, policies and processes, I bet you’ll continue to lack the ability for better competitive strategies.

Now, how can Google search engine marketing help to increase hotel bookings? And why Google search in the first place?

Search Engine Marketing For Hotels

Before we go in to explore how to increase hotel bookings from Google search, here is why I chose Google – with 77.4% market share, it is the #1 search engine across all countries in the world, including Nigeria.

Based on what we know about the digital landscape in Nigeria, majority of search engine traffic flows through mobile devices.

This includes people searching for hotel rooms and related services across different states, cities and locales. Below is a sample screenshot of what I mean.

Probably, you are reading this post on a mobile device. Remember that a great percentage of your target customers are people on the go – travelers.

Mind you that some of the prospects searching for keywords like these are not currently in Enugu (or your operating location). How do you reach them exactly the time they are in need of your services? Keep on reading.

To further buttress this point, a 2016 study by Hotels.ng revealed that 60% of hotel bookings happen on mobile devices. Other demographic insights also abound in that report.

Generally, search engine marketing is of two forms. Below this paragraph, we’ll explore them one by one.

Paid Search Engine Marketing

This is a pay per click online marketing strategy in which people and companies pay money directly to Google to place their adverts relating to selected keywords.

Sometime it is called performance based advertising. And here is how paid search advertising work.

If I go to Google and search for ‘hotels in Abuja’ and then click your advert that popped up, Google will deduct a specified amount from your prepaid advert billing account.

Without the advert being clicked to drive booking prospects to your website, you won’t pay anything. In other words, you won’t be paying for visibility and brand impressions only; just like radio, newspaper, television and bill boards.

On a deeper level, there are some market dynamics that determines how much you’ll pay for each prospect delivered to your hotel booking website.

You can check this post on how to set Google adwords budget for more insight.

Search Engine Optimization For Hotels

This is the second form of search engine marketing.  Unlike PPC search ads, you don’t pay money directly to Google or other search engines for them to list the links to your website for each relevant keyword or phrase. What is SEO you may ask?

Well, here is how search engine optimization work.

First it is a process of making your web pages eligible for higher ranking within search engine result pages and for specific search terms.

This involves doing research to select the relevant keywords and phrases that real prospects use when they are searching for specific products, services, location, equipment or solution to their current problems.

You use tools like Google keyword planner, Ahrefs keyword explorer, Long Tail Pro or Semrush for this.

The second part is using the selected keywords to create contents for your website and individual pages. Examples are service descriptions, blog posts and other web pages.

Thirdly, organic SEO is about building links that leads both human users and search engine crawlers to your website. These are the core parts of active search engine optimization.

If you are not active in this regard, it means your hotel website could be an empty conference hall.

how search engine optimization work

No deal. No revenue.

In order to leverage search engine optimization to increase direct hotel bookings, two options are in front of you – learn as much as you can and do the work yourself or hire an SEO expert.

The same thing applies to pay per click search engine advertising with Google adwords.

Thus, the whole essence is to reach and attract interested prospects only and exactly the moment they are in active search for your services.

Google calls this purchase loop ‘I Want To Buy Moment’.

Now, let’s look at specific ways and actions you can take to boost your hotel promotion strategies. I believe these will enrich your sales promotion ideas at the end. Here we go.

#1: Go Beyond Your Operating Location 

As noted earlier, a great percentage of prospective, money-in-hand hotel customers are travelers on the go.

Based on this fact, you don’t have to depend 100% on local residents or people within commutable distance. But how do I know, you may ask?

Well, I am a typical example of young adults who book hotel rooms only when they travel. And as for me, I often start my search for rooms within my budget prior to arriving on the location.

The other time is when am already on the road – inside a bus or an airport.

Going beyond operating location is a perfect strategy for single state or city hotels. This could be a real competitive advantage if done properly. In some countries, Google adwords provides capabilities to reach people who are inside an airport.

Other than this, you can as well select the location of prospects you want to attract vis adword location targeting.

google adwords location targeting strategy

Think about people searching for keywords like ‘hotels near Lagos airport Ikeja’. Add your own city name if you are not operating out of Lagos.

#2: Invest In Local SEO

If you want to increase the quality of your daily, weekly and monthly website traffic (ie: real prospects), then local search engine optimization is one of the best ways to accomplish that.

It is simply a process of using location based keywords to attract people from organic search engine result pages.

The premise is that people searching for such terms in relation to specific services are often within that location or interested in visiting very soon.

Soon in this context could be within the next 24 hours or 30 days.

This also implies that even people from outside the country searching for hotels in specific cities will find your website. Among other things, it gives the potential booking customers opportunities to see your rooms and prices before visiting the location.

To do this very well, there are lots of intricate dynamics behind it. However, except you want to take online SEO course, here is a guide on search engine optimization for hotels.

#3: Leverage On Strategic Timing

If you are still shouting at radio stations during working hours all in the name of growing brand awareness and inducing top of mind recall, think again.

You can do better than that.

On the surface it may seem there is no special time for growing brand awareness. However, when it comes to direct service marketing, advertising at different hours of the day can hardly have equal effects.

And we all know that with most traditional advertising mediums the outcomes of your advertising spend can hardly be measured.

In effect, you are throwing money in the air or gambling when you pay for brand impressions only. Without doubt, I am 100% sure you need results better than that.

So what am I saying about strategic timing?

Launch your Google adwords campaigns when prospective customers are in booking mode. This will increase conversion rate.

Run your ads between 12:00pm – 09:00pm. Increase your ad spending on weekends. Note that you can as well attract people searching for competing hotel brand names and then show what you’ve got at the right time.  Don’t ignore this.

#4: Showcase Your Unique Amenities 

When it comes to amenities, all hotels are not created equal. The same fact holds true for the taste and purchasing power of your target customers.

Here is a common scenario.

Someone spends good amount of money to build aesthetically cool hotel website. And within that, there are lots of images displaying rooms and amenities as well as a page called gallery.

But the big question is how many qualified prospects visit this website on daily basis to see all the amenities that makes you the best in town?

The other practice is to create social media pages. Post few pictures and forget it or some boring contents that no one cares to read.

Contrary to this, you can use Facebook advertising to make your amenities visible to a well targeted audience based on demographic variables like age, gender, location, industry, job titles and many others.

But that isn’t the focus of this post for now.

Interestingly, there are many ways to showcase your hotel amenities to qualified and interested people even before they decide to visit a particular hotel.

Let’s look at some of them in the context of google search engine marketing. The following options apply to both adwords and SEO.

Swimming Pool Related Keywords: Examples ‘Enugu hotels with swimming pool’ ‘hotels in Abuja with swimming pool’. If you have this in your place, use Google adwords to attract people to a page that showcases them.

Conference Hall Related Keywords: Think of search terms like ‘event centers in your location’, ‘conference halls in your location’ and others like them. Create specific pages for this and start driving search engine traffic to them.

Fitness Gym Related Keywords: Both local residents and periodic visitors often look for fitness gyms within the hotels they choose to book. Give a special page to your gym facilities. Add multiple clear images. And start driving traffic to it.

#Tip: Add phone numbers and email on top of every image. People searching for specific products and services are often in price comparison mode. And some people may not be aware that the amount in their hands can afford quality amenities like your own.

#5: Make Your Price Range Known

Yes, I know it is stated clearly in your website. But here is one fact worth reiterating.

The biggest room in the world is the room for improvement’ – Anonymous.

And I guess this is the single most important reason why you are reading this.

Unless there is a law banning the display of prices in your operating location, by all means make your price range known to as much prospects as possible.

Note here that the statement or goal isn’t to make your price range and amenities known to everyone in your target location, but only the prospects actively searching for your type of services.

People searching for keywords like ‘affordable hotels’ in your target location are often in price comparison mode.

The usual intent is to find what matches their personality, taste and budget. If you are waiting for them to reach your website or location before they know, then you are practically missing out daily on online advert originated bookings.

#6: Use Google Adwords Remarketing 

Once, again the essence of price comparison in a pre-booking context is worth repeating.

But why?

Well, Google adwords remarketing helps smart business owners and marketers to key into that context.

The thing is that when interested prospects visit your website and leave to continue their search for some reasons, remarketing or retargeting gives you the opportunity to stay in front of them across different online mediums and devices.

Through Google adwords, you can use this competitive marketing strategy to bring back and convert a percentage of people who viewed your website or specific pages.

For example, if I visited a page about hotel room rates in your site and leave to continue my search and price comparison, Google adwords remarketing list for search ads (RLSA) make it possible to target only the people who viewed that specific page.

Remember that a great percentage of (local/international) travelers start their hotel search 1 – 7 days before arriving at a specified destination.

If you are creative enough, you can use influential ad copies and exclusive discounts to reach only the prospects who visited your booking page within the last 1 – 30 days.

Here is a remarketing case study of over 200% ROI on $4168 ad spend.

Beside RLSA, Gmail, Youtube, online banner display, past customer emails and even Facebook can be leverage to launch an integrated remarketing campaign to increase hotel bookings online and offline.

Below is an example of remarketing ad done on Facebook.

With this, you now know that hotel sales promotion strategies goes beyond free posting on Facebook and other social media platforms.

At this point, the question that could be popping in your mind is – how long would it take me to learn all of this?

Here is one good option you have – hire a digital marketing consultant. The other route is to employ a full time expert which will add up to your monthly salary bill.

One thing is obvious to you and i. And that is; there is a great competition within your target market.

Thus, if you are not exploring new initiatives, you’ll continue to have the same unimpressive results you’ve always had. In addition to that, you could be losing even ready customers within your reach to the nearest smart competitors.

But now, with Google adwords you have a great competitive advantage. That is if you put what you just learnt to work.

Among many other things you now know how to go beyond your operating location, use precise location based search terms. And then leverage strategic timing, showcase your unique amenities as well as retargeting.

As noted before, the core benefit is – you’ll be attracting only the prospects actively searching for your hotel services.

Done very well, this will help you to answer questions around how to increase hotel bookings, both online and offline. Go take some actions today.

Share your experience or challenges in the comment section. You can as well join our Facebook group – The Search Tribe to discuss, discover and leverage working strategies to attract only the people in need of your products/services – Now.

7 Business Blogging Mistakes Wasting Your Revenue Potential

Without notice, the business blogging mistakes you are making now wastes your time and money. Starting a business blog is easy. But getting good ROI from it is an entirely different challenge.

Read on to find out if you are making these mistakes and how to change your strategy.

Many people come from different backgrounds to start a business, and for many different reasons. This variation in backgrounds, approach and perspectives then determines the difference in business outcomes.

Depending on who sold the idea of starting a website to you, you may or may not understand the benefits of starting a business blog from day one.

Just so you know, a blog and a business website are not usually the same thing. These two can be built into one for maximum ROI or differently for varying purposes.

Even if you have an existing blog, you could be making one or more of these business blogging mistakes.

Hence, your revenue potential is being wasted in that regard.

Business Blogging Mistakes In B2B Markets

  1. Not Having A Blog

If you have a business website without a blog, you may tend to think these two are the same. This could lead to a question like – why start a company blog?

As I have observed by interacting with many business owners, blogging or content marketing is not part of their current priorities.

In fact, some are still dependent on traditional offline marketing channels.

Hence, a lack of knowledge in this context excludes them from the benefits of blogging for business.

If you have a website currently attracting visitors, having a blog helps to convert a percentage of qualified leads to paying customers among other benefits.

Learn to leverage the power of pre-selling.

Below is the website for Quality Aviation Inc; commercial flight service firm without a blog. Obviously, their website is outdated and no one cares.

business blogging

With a consistent business blogging strategy, they can start attracting visitors actively searching for keywords like ‘commercial flight certification courses’.

  1. No SEO Strategy

Unless your business revolves around marketing, majority of small business owners have limited knowledge of how online marketing works. Because of this reason, even some people who have business blogs have no SEO strategy in place.

And this means that your revenue generation potential is being wasted to some extent.

So you have been creating great contents. Probably you’ve been logging for months or even years. And you also share your blog posts in social media.

You could be generating some website traffic too. But your ROI remains below average, flat zero or worse still; unknown to you.

Wasting your revenue potential implies that the same amount of resources you spend on blogging without results could get better outcomes by implementing an SEO strategy within your blog.

Implementing search engine optimization strategies requires that you use keywords that your potential customers are actively searching for.

To get the best results, you need to optimize for the search terms in your titles, sub headings, body of content, images, internal and external links etc.

  1. It’s All About You

One of the key challenges facing entrepreneurs, marketers, business bloggers and copywriters is finding a balance between your interest and customer needs. Mismatched messaging in this regard leads to low return on marketing spend.

Business blogging is a form of active online marketing strategy. However, a lot of people make the mistake of writing about themselves, their company and products only.

Trying to force your message of ‘buy, buy, buy and buy’ on prospects attention hardly influence buying decisions in your favor.

Unfortunately, this is one of the business blogging mistakes I see a lot of people make in their company blogs. Consequently, they waste the limited resources that would have been spent on revenue growth activities.

Contrary to pushing your own interests beyond balance, it’s better to start your content creation with the keywords that your prospects are actively searching for.

The fact that they are actively searching for your products or services is a sign of purchase intent.

But you have to speak to their needs. Use your customers’ language. The other approach is to develop buyer persona and then stay focused on your target customer pain points. Mind you:

‘People buy solution to their problems, not products and services.’

So forget your awesome product features and sell me a solution.

  1. Zero Lead Generation Strategy

I bet it’s not every business owner that knows how online lead generation works or what it is. And this includes some people that are currently generating traffic to their company blog.

Generating website traffic is one thing. Getting real business value from it is another different challenge. See the screen shot below for searches related to ‘blog traffic’.

business blogging mistakes

However, am sure it’s not everyone that knows what to do with the traffic after they’ve gotten it.

For some reasons, you could be among the people making the business blogging mistake of having no lead generation strategy. But just what is lead generation anyway?

According to comscore/baymard online traffic study, 70 – 95% of your website visitors will leave without buying your product or becoming a lead. A lead is simply a prospect who gave their contact information in return for something valuable or expectation of an offer.

Having a lead generation strategy in your business blog helps to bring back lost prospects via email.

With the email list you build, you can implement repetitive promotions to the prospects and previous customers in your list.

Thus, if you are not generating leads from your blog, then you are missing out on the revenue opportunities.

See this list building and email marketing case study for more insights.

  1. Lack of Consistency

I am sure you must have heard that there is never a significant accomplishment without consistency.  Rome was not built in day you know.

You could be asking yourself right now. What are the key benefits of consistent business blogging?

One of them is consistent growth of your search engine ranking, website traffic, lead generation and growing sales volume.

Yes, these things can be experienced as the benefits of blogging for a business beyond lame posts.

If you are not consistent in your writing, publishing and promotion schedule, then you will always lose out to your competitors who are actively reaching out.

Consistency in this context doesn’t mean you must write, publish and promote every day. No. It means you should have a schedule that has some relative degree of frequency built into it.

This is one of the best kept blogging secrets among successful bloggers. You can outsource your content writing, publishing and promotion to experienced experts.

  1. No Blog Post Promotion Strategy

This is one of the biggest business blogging mistakes holding a lot of people back. They assume that great content is just enough.

And if you have great content, you will be entitled to viral traffic and sales growth.

After all, they say that content is king.

The content you create can be leveraged for growing revenue, but only if you promote it.

Without active blog post promotion, the revenue generation potential will remain untapped forever.

If you have 10 to 100 blog posts in your site, but they are not in any measurable way contributing to your overall revenue growth, then the resources you invested in creating them is as good as wasted.

Sure you need maximum value from your hard work.

Don’t you?

Your blog post promotion strategies may include on page SEO, Google adwords, Bing Ads, Facebook Ads, social group marketing, content sharing sites etc.

Key point here is that you can do better than waiting for slow search engine ranking and traffic. Consider using direct paid advertisements to bring targeted traffic to your posts.

  1. Ignoring Performance Tracking

The painful part of business blogging for many is grinding out for months or even years without seeing progress. But how do you define progress in the first place?

That’s where conversion tracking comes in.

Done very well, your company blogging strategies can be contributing towards growth of targeted traffic to your sales and lead generation landing pages.

But without conversion tracking in these two instances, finding justification for continuity will pose a very big challenge.

Here is one of the reasons for the abandoned blogs I see most times.

The best way to overcome this is to integrate Google analytics and conversion funnel tracking systems into your blog. As important as it is, this should even be done before starting an active promotion campaign.

Ignoring conversion tracking makes you to lose sight of the data that could be used for conversion rate improvement.

After integrating lead generation and conversion tracking on a clients landing page, here is a screenshot of what he got from inside MailChimp and Google Analytics.

That’s 190+ email subscribers or leads in less than 5 days.

Conclusion

One of the main reasons why people make and continue to make these business blogging mistakes is limited knowledge.

For example, not having a blog at all or owning a website without a blog may not be seen as mistake.

In case you don’t know, a website without promotion is like a pack of business cards locked in a forgotten office cabinet.

In some sense, a website is like business cards as well. However, starting a business blog gives you space to communicate your value propositions while at the same time attracting a demographic of targeted prospects.

Unfortunately, the benefits can only be experienced if you get started.

Thus, if you are currently making one or more of these mistakes, then the time to do something different is now.

Perhaps, what you may actually need is simple reallocation of resources and realignment of your strategy.

Please share your business blogging experience or challenges in the comment section below. You can as well join our Facebook group – The Search Tribe to discuss, discover and leverage working strategies to attract only the people in need of your products/services – Now.

How To Use Adwords Data In Your Business Blogging Strategy

Whether you are aware of it or not, your business blogging strategy will certainly be based on either of these two things. First is real data. Second is assumption.

Besides, there could be overlapping combination of these two things.

Hence, they influence the approach and outcomes of your blog based content marketing efforts. Like many others, you could be facing some serious challenges in company blogging.

To overcome most of them, you’ll learn from this post, how to use Google adwords data for SEO in your company blog.

So whether you are just trying to start a business blog for the first time or you’ve been doing it for a while, taking action on the possibilities revealed here will certainly make a difference.

Why Google Adwords For SEO?

using google adwords for SEO

Before proceeding to discuss the specific action you can take to implement this, we’ll first of all identify the useful data points that can be used in the process.

Remember the key point is to leverage real data to improve your business blogging strategy instead of being 100% dependent on assumptions.

Why this interested me was because I saw a lot of business owners in different niche markets blogging without a plan.

Some of the niche markets I have observed this closely include event planning, staffing services, fitness and ecommerce. This is mostly from my consulting experience in these niche markets.

As you might have already known, it is always better to start with the end in mind. For many reasons, this is far better than randomly spending money and time with hope of the best outcomes.

Business Blogging Strategy With Adwords Data

Sure you have heard that Google adwords is risky and too expensive. Maybe you have tried on your own and lost money or you hired an inexperienced expert to waste your money.

Besides you could be using Google adwords right now to generate traffic, leads and sales. But you recognize the possibility of using a business blog and SEO to get more traffic.

Here is the interesting thing. Growing organic search engine traffic has a lot to do with keywords and the topics they represent.

Here is one true fact about the essence of keyword optimization in your content strategy.

‘If you don’t know what people are actually searching for in your niche, you’ll be relying on luck – rather than useful data – to guide your decisions.’ – Joshua Hardwick, The SEO Project

This is one of the multiple ways in which Google determines searcher intent. Your experience on auto suggested search terms is a real proof of this. (add shot)

Contrary to what most people believe, it is not all about keyword search volume. Interestingly, the majority of keyword research tools in the market provide only an estimate of search volume and other metrics.

And because of this a whole lot of people start their business blog on mere assumptions.

I guess you may not have even bothered about keyword research. But the fact is that writing about random topics in your blog won’t get you the results you desire.

See this post on the 4 business blogging benefits beyond brand awareness. My point here; don’t stop at generic thought leadership posts.

Beyond search volume numbers, all keywords are not created equal.

There are buyer keywords and there are informational keywords. This matters even more when the motive behind your business blogging strategy and SEO efforts is to make profit.

Better than being focused on estimated search volume only, running some adwords campaign with $5 – $300 will give you some real data.

With that data, you will be able to align your company blogging and SEO strategies with business outcomes.

Practically, this is more valuable than merely measuring useless traffic and brand awareness metrics. This will help to solve the problem of growing traffic volume and low return on invested time and money.

  • Ad Clicks

google adwords ctr

Practically, there are too many variables that can influence the number of click you get on your Google adwords advertisement.

However, when you run some ads it becomes possible to see the exact search terms bringing the most clicks or visitors to your site.

Obviously, this is far better than doing surface level guesswork with search volume data.

The interesting thing here is that you can see the actual results within 1 – 30 days. Unlike SEO, you don’t need to wait for 1, 6 or 12 months to see the most valauble traffic generating keywords.

Take for instance you set up a campaign targeting 200 keywords.

Then in less than 48 hours you see the top 20 keywords that brought the highest number of visitors to your website.

With this keyword data, you can do some SEO competition analysis and use them in your blog content creation. Keep reading. We’ll see the exact steps on how to use keywords click data in your business blogging strategy.

  • Cost Per Click

This is the amount paid per click bringing a visitor to your website via Google adwords. Besides the competition in your niche, this metric is mainly determined by advertiser’s set bid.

On the other hand, there are broad and exact match bid types.

These things determine whether your set CPC bid would be the same or variant. Every advertiser is responsible to set his or her own bid based on pricing auction policies.

As noted earlier, you can use Google keyword planner to see the estimated cost per click for your target niche market and location.

Unfortunately, these things are just what they are – estimates only. And this is where most of the assumptions start.

Perhaps, if you have used Google adwords advertising for a while, you certainly will have CPC data in your account. In that case, you understand that the inflow of website traffic will stop when you stop paying Google.

By using the search terms with highest CPC (most expensive traffic source) to generate organic search engine traffic, you’ll be lowering your customer acquisition cost.

Call it cost per sale if you like. Within this context, you’ll be missing out on the long term benefits of SEO if you don’t have a business blog.

However, a website without a blog can generate organic search engine traffic but it takes 10X active efforts and money.

But first, you have to identify the search terms with the highest CPC.

With adwords, your traffic is limited to your budget. Hence it ends when your budget is exhausted. But your organic ranking can last for 3, 6, 12 months or multiple number of years.

Beyond theories and my personal opinion, here is a study that shows how organic search engine results command more clicks than paid search.

  • Ad Click Through Rate

This is simply the percentage of people who saw your ad vs the people that actually clicked. As a Google search engine user yourself, you understand the things that move you to click.

Even in terms of paid search advertisements, the reasons for clicking one ad instead of the other are always obvious.

Time, location, urgency, price, relevance and pain point; all matter in the mix.

The main fact here is that, like keywords, all ads are not created equal. You can do the best research. Make the best assumptions. But the outcomes will always mismatch your expectation.

Unfortunately, if you jump right into business blogging without an SEO strategy, you’ll have to wait 3  – 12 months to find out if you are on the right track or not.

And by that time, you must have invested some good amount of time and money.

Though Google adwords click through rate and organic search click through rate are not the same, the insights gained from one can be applied to the other.

Better to leverage the data on what has been proven to work than depend 100% on fallible assumptions.

Again, if you’ve had some Google ads running you will have access to the ad impressions and CTR data. By identifying the ads with highest CTR, you’ll see the exact keywords and ad copies that your audience finds the most attractive.

Again, this data point can be leveraged for effective SEO in your business blogging strategy.

  • Website Conversion Data

If you are currently running a campaign by yourself or with Google adwords consultant, you probably have conversion tracking set up in your site.

For most business people, two major types of conversions are usually tracked.

A business in outsourced staffing services niche will be tracking mainly lead generation.

While a fitness equipment business with online store will be tracking actual sales. However, nothing stops you from generating and tracking leads for future sales conversion.

One of the key business blogging mistakes I see many people making is that of creating contents without targeted search queries.

This is the best way to align contents with the pain points, problems and needs of their target customers.

And for the few that do some keyword research, what everyone depends on is the estimated search volume data. The assumption is that higher search volume for the selected search terms will result in higher volume of organic search engine traffic from their blogs.

And that’s how some business bloggers get trapped in the problem of growing traffic volume and zero conversion in terms of leads and sales.

With the website conversion data in your Google adwords account you’ll be able to identify the precise keywords and ad copies that delivered actual leads and sales.

Sure it is good to have high traffic volume.

But what if the majority (55 – 95%) of the website visitors you spend money and time to generate are actually useless to your business?

I’m sure this isn’t what you want out of your search engine marketing budget.

By leveraging website conversion data in your blog content creation and on-page SEO, you’ll have some competitive advantage in your target market.

  • Call Conversion Data

According to Google, 50% of local searches conducted on mobile devices leads to a store visit.

And most times it starts with a phone call.

Beyond the information that can be provided via text, image or video on a web page, some customers will still need clarification by talking with a sales rep.

And that is where Google adwords call extension, call only ads and call tracking come in.

If you are using the two phone calls related ad options mentioned above, you probably have call conversion tracking set up in your campaign.

With some A/B testing and the help of your sales rep, you can begin to see the exact campaigns, ad groups, ads and keywords delivering actual sales to your business.

And this includes Google adword originated phone calls too.

This call conversion data has so much value if only you know how to leverage that in your business blogging strategy.

It’s all about understanding client or buyer intent.

And like most other data points, you don’t have to spend so much on content creation, SEO and traffic generation. And then find out 3 – 12 months later that it is impossible to break even.

By putting this data to work, here are some of the benefits that can be experienced in your company blog.

#1: Brand Trust Building

Empathy, not superficial buzzwords or grammar makes the biggest difference in building trust with sales copies. Yes, you shouldn’t turn your company blog into direct sales copies only.

However, there are different ways to align your contents with core marketing objectives.

By showing better understanding of your target customers’ pain points, you’ll be positioned more than many of your competitors to present a trustworthy solution.

And by relating with their current desires, hopes, fears and aspirations it becomes easier to touch the emotional hot buttons that will move them to a favorable action. This is exactly why stories sell.

#2: Pre-Selling Opportunity

Contrary to what many other experts would want you to believe, pre-selling your products or services via business blogging is not abnormal.

The only bad thing is starting the post and making the entire content focused on your interest.

Avoid writing fluff that shouts me, me, me and me all the time. On the contrary, it is better to dwell so much on your customer pain points. The things they care so much about.

Using content pieces like product feature review and case studies help to bring the target customer into a context of exchanging money for defined value.

Many studies in psychology had proven that we like people who believe same thing we do.

So in the context of buying and selling, we buy from people we like especially when the time is right. Sell me a solution, not your products or services. That’s it.

#3: Converting Prospects Into Customers

Beyond brand awareness, this is the ultimate goal your business blog is supposed to help you accomplish.

However, if you don’t have conversion funnel set up in your company blog, then generating leads and sales from it will always remain a distance day dream.

Starting your content creation with targeted keywords and pain points helps you to use your target customer’s language.

And if the language is mostly negative around their current frustrations, you’ll be moving a lot of them to take financially beneficial actions. Done very well, blog posts can promote your lead magnet, lead generation landing pages, quote request pages, contact forms as well as direct sales pages.

Now, here are some actionable strategies on how you can actually use the Google adwords data in your business blogging strategy.

Create Attractive Blog Post Titles

Both within your blog and search engine results page, blog post titles make a great difference in click through rate (CTR). For most people, it takes less than 3 seconds to decide based on headline if your content would be worth their time or not.

Here are some specific factors that influence most people to click one title instead of the other. This is based experience from many blogs I have built and that of clients too.

While using keywords in your title is good for search engine optimization that alone is not enough.

If your titles are not attractive enough, the entire content will be ignored. This will be happening both within your blog post archive, social media and even when you get some impressive ranking for the target search term.

Remember that the Googlge adwords data points discussed earlier is a potent source of keyword research.  So that’s where you get your search terms from.

To make your blog post titles attractive, first step is the use of exact keywords that your target audiences are actively searching for. The Click through rate data in your adwords account is a good source.

In addition to that here are other elements you can include to make them more attractive:

  • Promise of value
  • Specific benefits
  • Solution to a problem
  • Pricing concern
  • Urgent need
  • Location proximity
  • Relevant statistics
  • Social proof
  • Answer to a question

You can combine two or more of these to make the most attractive impression. If you have the creative prowess, it is also possible to optimize your titles for more than one search query at a time.

This is one of the ways you can make your blog posts to rank for 100+ keywords depending on the length.

With your conversion data, using the search phrases that brought you actual leads and sales will increase the quality of overall website traffic you get from your blog SEO.

Brian Dean of Backlinko has a detailed post here on the importance of matching keyword commercial intent.

To get higher click through rate from search engines, try to make your blog post titles to have complete meaning and be moderately short.

See how CoSchedule headline analyzer will give you a preview of how your title will appear in SERP ranking.

blog headline writing tools

Optimize Your Meta Description

Meta description is a brief preview of information about a web page ranking in search results. Google search engine crawlers use this snippet to determine the relevance of a web page to a specified search query.

If you are an avid user of Google search like me, you’ll already know where this information shows within search engine results.

Below is a screenshot of the meta description for the search term ‘business blogging strategy’.

business blogging

In addition to the blog post title, using your selected keywords in meta descriptions make the web page eligible to rank competitively higher for that same keyword.

However, the inclusion of related keywords and other factors contributes to the ranking position.

Unfortunately, if your entire blog posts are created without on-page SEO practice, then your website’s potential for generating organic search engine traffic will be limited.

To get the best from this and other influential on page ranking factors, Yoast SEO plugin provides multiple features for this.

It’s all about the first 1 – 3 sentences in your web page contents.

Write Keyword Focused Content

Unless you understand why this is important, you wouldn’t care about proper use of keywords within your blog posts.

And for most business bloggers outside the online marketing space, this is usually the case.

Also in addition to titles and description snippets, the use of selected search queries within the entire body of blog posts makes a lot of difference in the ranking. For most people, two things always prevail.

It is either you are blindly creating more contents while hoping for the best outcome or you are you have a strategy aligned with your core marketing objectives.

My question is; which approach do you follow while creating your blog posts…?

Without writing keyword rich contents, you’ll be missing out on the long term benefits of search engine traffic that comes from the high rankings.

To get the best outcome without overdoing it, use the target search term five times or less within the body of your contents.

Another important area is to use it in one or more sub headings where relevant. Making moderate use of the key search terms for internal linking also boosts on-page SEO score.

By internal linking am referring to links leading to other pages within your sites and related pages within your niche.

Different from the exact search phrases you want to rank a page for, inclusion of other phrases related to it boosts your page potential to rank for multiple terms.

These are the practical steps to writing keyword rich blog posts.

Build Keyword Rich Backlinks

Here is another interesting context for using Google adwords data in your business blogging strategy. Th reason is because the links connecting your web page with other pages with the operating niche is a big off page SEO factor.

For search engine ranking purposes, Google uses a set of variables to assign score to the quality of links leading directly to your website.

And one of the key variables here is the words or set of phrases with which those links are were built.

In simple human terms, these words help to describe the contents of web pages being linked.

However, if you are not building keyword rich backlinks it means that your business website is currently excluded from the real benefits. The benefits include quality leads, sales and profit that come from this SEO practice.

Remember that higher ranking for proven keywords makes for higher potential to attract qualified prospects to visit your website. The words with which web links were made are called anchor text.

And in the context of off page SEO, here are some specific types of anchor text links.

Exact Match Anchor Text Link: This is a type of link made wholly with targeted keywords. Example is this orange link to a page about ‘content marketing automation tools’.

Phrase Match Anchor Text: The text link contains the keywords being targeted for higher ranking. Example is this link to a page about ‘how to grow your blog traffic’. The target search term is blog traffic.

Branded Match: This is simply using a brand name to link other web pages. The link to the home page of this website ‘Weblife’ is an example. However, you always link to whatever page you like with a brand name. But is has to be based on relevant context.

Naked Url: This one makes use of a website address or page url to build backlinks. Website address example is http://weblifehq.com and page url is http://weblifehq.com/business-blogging.

One important thing to remember when building keyword rich backlinks is to diversify both the keywords and anchor text type.

If you ignore this, Google will penalize your site with low or no ranking at all. Check this post for more insight on anchor text diversification.

Conclusion

One of the key important things worth reiterating is that having a business blogging strategy is better than randomly creating and publishing contents.

Thus, if random blogging is all you’ve been doing, then it’s time to think above the prevailing assumptions. As you have read above, Google adwords is a potent source of traffic data whose value goes above search volume metrics.

Sure you don’t want growing traffic volume and zero return on the time and money invested in your business blog.

That is assuming you have one already.

Interestingly, if you are currently using adwords advertising or you have use it for more than a month, then the data points discussed above are already within your reach.

Note that you don’t need to have all the expertise before putting the data to work as discussed above.

Probably you are currently using a Google adwords consultant or agency to manage your campaigns.

Whether you are aware of it or not, the person or agency may as well not have the expertise to use the advertising data in a business blogging context.

Think about what 20% reduction in customer acquisition cost, improved conversion rate or profit margin would mean in your own business.

At the end, the ultimate strategy is to align your business blog content creation, promotion and lead generation efforts with measurable business outcomes.

Don’t stop at growing brand awareness with thought leadership.

You can as well join our Facebook group – The Search Tribe to discuss, discover and leverage working strategies to attract only the people in need of your products/services – Now.