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Eight zero budget marketing tips from the Connect community -

Trying to encourage new leads and market your business with zero budget isn't as hard as you might think.

Many young businesses, and smaller operations, often find it difficult to justify a hefty marketing spend. Once overheads have been paid premises, staffing costs, office supplies and so on theres often little left in the kitty to spend on marketing, so anything you can do for free is well worth it.

We asked Telegraph Small Business Connect readers to share their tips on how to market on a zero budget. Heres what they said:

1. Use online communities to profile customers

Get online and start looking for communities related to your niche or places where potential customers may hang out. Use these communities to research buyer persona and guide your content strategy. A decent SME community on LinkedIn is a useful research tool and can even deliver the odd lead.

Tip by David Vallance, inbound marketer, Digital Impact

2. Get mapped by Google

Claim your free Google My Business account. This is important, especially for local businesses, because search results will often include a map pack with three local businesses on it. Google My Business is what feeds these results, so if your business isn't on there, you won't show up on the map results."

Tip by Rob Watson, digital marketing consultant, Click to Sale

3. Remember that time costs money

Social media accounts are free to create, but costly in terms of time spent on them. Utilise free tools such asHootsuite for social media management, Buffer for social media scheduling and Buzzsumo for content marketing research to manage your time and budget efficiently.

Tip by Carla Bradman, head of marketing, Johns & Co

4. Piggy-back on big stories

A big event that creates online chatter can offer a strong opportunity to get your business out there. Being reactive on Twitter costs nothing, especially if you can pair it with some smart design as Oreo did during its infamous Super Bowl tweet. Beyond that, survey your customers and audience to acquire data that you can tie into an ongoing event or story for public relations purposes. Many brands used this approach to capitalise on the noise surrounding Pokemon GO.

Tip by Richard Paul, outreach and campaign manager, addmustard

5. Build deeper relationships with existing customers

With a little extra effort, your existing customers can become your biggest supporters. It doesn't have to be complex: send them a simple, personalised thank you email and ask them how you can improve their experience of your business. They will love the attention and you will learn lots from them.

Tip by Sybil Wong, head of marketing and communications, Sparrho

6. Collaborate with other brands

Reach new audiences by striking contra-marketing agreements with brands of a similar size. They will be just as keen to reach your audience in exchange. But make sure their audience is of interest, and consists of your target audience. Also ensure that you both offer a comparable level of exposure by researching their reach across their website, newsletter, social media and offline.

Tip by Elaine Farrell, digital communications specialist, Hackney Mama

7. Offer free insights

Join relevant industry Facebook groups and provide lots of free value in the form of the information you provide. Help people who are stuck. Offer advice on how youve tackled similar situations. Become known as the go-to expert in your field so that people learn to trust your advice and knowledge. This may ultimately lead them to work with you when their budgets allow.

Tip by Charlotte Moore, food and fitness copywriter, That Copy Girl

8. Guest blog

Guest blogging is an ideal way to get your name out there. Its something people often overlook, but it's a great way to expose your ideas to a wider audience. You might have a blog yourself, but getting a decent amount of visitors to it can take of time and effort. Seek out sites that accept guest bloggers and well-written articles. If you manage to have a post published, make sure to include a link to your website.

Tip by Emma Saldana, freelance writer, writtenbyems

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How to maintain content marketing focus in long-running SEO programs - Search Engine Land


A few weeks ago, I gave a presentation on a SEO-centric content marketing program thatmembers of our team have been engaged inacross a two-plus year run. The presentation outlined preparation and research, steps in execution, performance measurement, and communication to teams.

Our goals have been aggressive, requiring a high level of organizational effort, analysis, and internal motivation to remain focused.

SEO Content Marketing Goals

Take note of the last goal we set out for the program: 250 content marketing assets.

A mix of emotions ranacross the audience members faces, ranging from disbelief to affirmation.

While hopefully, I provided compelling steps and tactics for realizing success (we have exceeded all of these goals), it is the last component of that presentation that I wanted to focuson here.

Ongoing communication is critical to maintaining a successful SEO-centric content marketing program (or any digital marketing program). It is even more important when an organization is entrenched in the day to day execution of tactics, and perhaps results have yet to be realized.

In this column, I will walk you through tactics and examples we use in our internal communication process, designed to maintain production as well as foster new ideas and motivate performance.

Monthly recommendation sets

When an SEO and content marketing team is in the midst of an ongoing program, monthly content marketing recommendations can be critical in fostering new ideas.

This communication is also important for helping team members understand what has worked in the past and what topics and trends are relevant now.

Communication Examples

The biggest challenge that we have faced with this initiative is in getting team members to leverage these ideas. In a sea of email, this correspondence certainly can get lost in the shuffle.

To gain greater acceptance and adoption, here are some of the ways weve repositioned this tactic to make it more effective:

Stronger lead visuals and more eye-catching graphics. We basically take best practices we would use in public-facing content development for our internal team communication as well.Options and ideas versus specific topics and headlines. Instead of telling people they have to write X Topic,we provide keyword ideas, suggested themes, and examples of past successes. This way, more of the creativity and idea generation falls back on individual team members.Routine feedback on messaging effectiveness. We look at both the level of adoption in ideas presented as well as direct feedback from team members to demonstrate the performance of recommendations made (and executed).

Its worth noting that we also focus on communicating site-specific monthly performance and success metrics along with topical recommendations detailed above. Visuals are critical here as well.

That said,we could spend an entire series of posts detailing what to present. I would recommend checking out Marketing Lands Analytics and Conversion section to stay up to speed in this area of focus.

Weekly status updates

While we all hate getting inundated with email, sometimes short bursts of information can be helpful so long as they provide value. Here are some of the communication updates we send routinely to keep our team motivated and up-to-date.

Weekly program updates.These updates are designed to keep everyone in the loop on activities and priorities.Industry news updates. If we find news and information that isrelevant (and sometimes critical) for team members, we make sure to call it out.Content publication distribution.Whenever new content is published on site or in third-party publications, we share withthe rest of team.

Similar to our monthly recommendation sets, our team does a great job of customizing their communication to make it more effective. Here are some of the ways we make this communication more impactful:

Pre-scripted updates and suggestions for social media distribution.A quick synopsis of impact and relevance in relation to news and information discovered.Similar to our monthly communication, many team members lead with a graphic or visual to help catch the readers eye and attention.Another Communication Example

Email works for our organization, but thats not to say its a universal requirement. Perhaps Twitter or a LinkedIn group would make more sense for your team. Regardless, the key to success has been constant communication in short, digestible formats.

Bi-weekly training sessions

Our organization holds bi-weekly (every other week) training discussions that have recently ranged from an introduction to Google Tag Manager to public speaking 101 to conference recaps and key takeaways.

While many of thesetraining sessions are not directly related to our specificongoing SEO and content marketing program, several are or could be adapted.Some specific topics we have used that directly align with ongoing SEO and content marketing initiatives include:

HTML best practices for content marketers.How to find good writing topics using keyword research.Key Google Analytics reports for demonstrating performance.

For these types of trainings to provide the most value, here are a few ideas to consider.

Scheduling.Set up a schedule of training dates well in advance. We have a calendar for the entire year.Feedback & suggestions.Obtain feedback from participating parties on topics of importance.Volunteers & assignments.We solicit volunteers and encourage/incorporate these training sessions into certain team members responsibilities as well.

Bi-weekly training sessions helpthe presenter as well since they can provide an open forum to receive feedback and reflect on tactics and successes (or opportunities) learned.

Contests, awards, and recognition

Lastly, its important to recognize both small wins and the accomplishment of major milestones; even if done only at an informal level. Some of the ways we try to recognize individual team member efforts are:

Internal communication highlightingtop posts and campaigns.Recognition (even if just through email) for outstanding results, influencers reached, or links acquired from new/interesting publications and websites.Annual awards and recognition for top content marketing assetsby traffic volume, links acquired, social shares, and lead acquisition.

It is easy to forget to acknowledge people when a team is heads down in program work and responsibilities. Quick and simple acknowledgment of hard work and results can go a long way in building needed morale over the long run.

Did you really produce 250 content marketing assets?

That was one question posed at the end of the presentation. The answer is yes, and we even exceeded that total if you counted third-party bylines, presentations, and other off-site opportunities.

Did we need to set a goal of 250? Absolutely not but it was the target our leadership team set based on competitive review and additional goals established.

For the production reason alone, it was important to maintain constant communication and encouragement, but also analysis and performance benchmarks to motivate and equip team members with as much information as possible to be successful.

Interested in learning more? Check out my Slideshare presentation with details as well as my columns on search result analysisand content marketing with search analyticsfor more information.

How do your SEO and content marketing teams keep performance at a high level throughout the duration of a program?Hopefully, these ideas spur new creativity but drop me a message anytime if you want to discuss more!

Some opinions expressed in this article may be those of a guest author and not necessarily Search Engine Land. Staff authors are listed here.

About The AuthorDerek Edmond is a Managing Partner for KoMarketing, a B2B online marketing agency specializing in search, social media, and content marketing. With over 10 years experience, Derek has worked with a range of organizations from the Fortune 500 to venture-backed startups and small businesses.

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Ansley Atlanta and Marketing Directors exec join forces - MyAJC (blog)

Two well-known names in Atlanta residential real estate are teaming up for a partnership targeting the regions luxury buyers.

Ansley Atlanta Real EstateBonneau Ansley III

Bonneau Ansley III, founder of Ansley Atlanta Real Estate and one of the top producing real estate agents in Atlanta and the nation, announced this week the appointment of Marketing Directors executive David Tufts as his companys president.

The luxury housing market has rebounded since the depths of the recession, Ansley said, and 2016 has so far shown that pent-up demand from the recession hasnt been quenched.

The luxury market is as strong as it has ever been in Atlanta today, Ansley said.

Ansley Atlanta is a boutique firm that fancies itself as a residential brokerage and a one-stop technology and services platform for new home construction, renovation and home resale services.

Tufts, formerly of The Condo Store and a fixture in the luxury condo world, also will be Ansley Atlantas managing broker and he will continue his role with the Marketing Directors. The Marketing Directors specialize in apartment and condo marketing, sales and re-positioning.

Ansley Atlanta, which was founded last year after Ansley left Harry Norman Realtors, has 32 agents with plans to grow to 60, Ansley said. The firm has a footprint in Atlanta and also the Georgia coast and North Georgia and North Carolina mountains.

Marketing Directors Ansley Atlanta Real EstateBonneau Ansley III

Ansley, who comes from a long family line of home-builders (a great uncle developed Ansley Park), has also struck a joint venture with home-builder Monte Hewett Homes for luxury construction and renovations.

The tag-team with Tufts and the Marketing Directors provides a link into the luxury condo scene in Atlanta and beyond, Ansley said.

The link-up also comes as condo development is getting started in metro Atlanta after years of development dominated by mid- and high-rise apartments. Condo developers are tapping into hot in-town areas so far dominated by luxury rentals. But buyers also want to live in walkable areas with city amenities, Tufts said, and a brokerage that can handle renovation and design services.

One of the biggest luxuries a condo buyer demands is the luxury of time, Tufts said.

April 4, 2016 Atlanta: Cami, an old English sheep dog, sits beside owner Dave Higgins on the patio of Nancy G's Cafe where dogs have been welcome for the last eight years and there is even a dog menu. Ben Gray / Bow-wow: Metro Atlanta businesses going to the dogs

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How To Optimize Your Website's Search Engine Performance

dallas seo company

Have you ever wanted to start up a web business but just didn't know how to effectively market your site and its products? If so, you're definitely in good company. Millions of people are looking to get involved in web business, and every single one of them would do well to read these SEO tips.

Most websites can benefit from an internet marketing strategy that encourages customer loyalty and repeat business by fostering a sense of community among customers. By giving customers the opportunity to communicate with each other and staying in contact with them, well-organized websites can build a strong base of repeat business. Loyal customers should feel rewarded for sticking with a particular online business.

When dealing with title and Meta tags on your pages, you have to remember to keep them very unique. In the world of SEO, finding a site that ranks highly without the proper keyword usage is extremely rare, and most of the top-ranking sites constantly change their tags and make them unique to the people who are searching in their particular market.

Make sure to have a "link to" option available to your visitors. Through these link and logos text that carry keywords or key phrases, visitors may want to link to your site. You should consider offering this through email to your marketing list as well. It is an easy way to get your site known, and more relevant with search engines.

One good on-page SEO technique is to use alt tags to describe all the images on your website. By doing this, search engines will be able to index the images and find your pages. This method also has the added benefit of helping website visitors who are using text-only browsers.

When you bid on keywords in a pay-per-click (PPC) affiliate marketing Oracle Nova program, remember that cheaper is almost always better. Online customers are a fickle often, and it is impossible to guarantee success by buying expensive ads. It is much better to spread your budget out across lots and lots of cheap ads. More ads give you more chances to make a sale and recoup your advertising costs.

By establishing relationships with other sites, Attract more traffic to your site and boost your search ranking. Sharing links with well-respected sites will help raise your profile and bring in more visitors. Be sure to reciprocate by linking back to their site as well, and avoid "link farms" with bad reputations.

In order to obtain the actual search volume for your keywords, you may want to consider opening a pay per click account. It may be worth it to see the real search volume data for your keywords, to be able to monitor trends, and also to view the impact when you modify or change your keywords, although the account will cost you. To better manage your search engine optimization, a pay per click account is a definite must.

Provide links to other websites and blogs to increase your views. If you have an active linking system, you will improve your search results within the major search engines. Find articles that you like that relate to your content and add links to them. Be sure however to keep your page from becoming just a page of links or you'll lose your viewers.

Search engines hate frames, so if you need to use them make sure to include a noframes tag and to create a full version of your site for the noframes client. If the search engines spiders can't read your site then you are never going to move anywhere in the ranks. Creating a noframes site will ensure that you can even be indexed in the search engine.

Never stop trying to get more inbound links for your site. If you only make an effort to get inbound links once, you will see a momentary boost in your rankings but it won't last. Having links coming in over time gives you higher credibility and improves your standing.

Sometimes focusing too much on SEO-related keywords and rules can detract from your writing topic and quality. By writing for your readers, you should start. Writing a quality article should be your goal. Afterwards you can always go back and add keywords and edit it as you see fit.

When using Twitter, employ a URL shortener that utilizes a 301 redirect to ensure you're getting the full benefits of the inbound link. provides great statistics in addition to using the 301 redirect, and therefore is an excellent choice. You can keep track of the click-through numbers on each link that you shorten.

Create a standing page with links to the updated content if you're writing on a single topic. Often, content will be updated as time passes, especially in the case of current events. It is best to create a summary page with links to the latest information and have that page rise to the top of the Search Engine Results Page (SERP).

If you don't take the time to expand, build and enhance your personal branding, SEO means nothing to your site. Design a memorablelogo and slogan, and use effective typography and layout design on your site. If customers are dissuaded and decide to leave immediately from your mediocre site, even if you have higher rankings in the search engines, they will mean nothing.

You should have style to your keywords by using header, italic and bold tags, if you want to bring more people to your site using search engine optimization. Use simple CSS to style your header tags. Keywords are important, therefore, you should show this to the search engines and your visitors.

While a site map is a great tool in SEO, it's better if the search engine can get around your site in a natural manner. That means your navigation is going to be too difficult for any user to use, too, if the spider needs to rely on your site map.

In order to find the best results for what you are looking for when using a search engine, it is important to not use too many words. The more words that you type into the search bar, the more specific that search has become and will hide many valuable options from you.

As you can tell from this article, the best SEO tips are short, sweet and to the point. If you only do this or that, they won't give you the runaround with fluff and they don't make any bold promises that you'll be instantly rich. This is real advice for the real site owner. Use it wisely and watch your rankings rise.

Oracle Nova

5222 Belmont Ave #209

Dallas, TX 75206

(972) 370-5170

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Great Advice For Common Web Design Problems

It can sometimes seem difficult to even think about entering into the world of web design. Yet you shouldn't let the world alone discourage you from trying to pursue and endeavors that you feel like you can profit from. The tips in this article can help you understand some of the key aspects of web design.

It's imperative that you include a tagline somewhere that will be very noticeable on your website. This lets people know about the site. There are about eight crucial seconds to keep and grab a visitor's attention, so having an easy-to-understand tagline is crucial.

Although it is common to see the www. at the front of a website URL, you should try to make sure that you can access your site whether you choose to include it or not. This will make it much easier for anyone to access regardless of how they type it.

Although it is common to see the www. at the front of a website URL, you should try to make sure that you can access your site whether you choose to include it or not. This will make it much easier for anyone to access regardless of how they type it.

Keep your topics separated. Separate topics to give each one its own page. This can keep viewers from becoming confused, and it can help search engines better understand your site so that they can boost your rankings.

To help you design a site that is easy for people to read all the information, make sure the pages are not too wide. They will fit on most people's computer screens if the pages are not too wide. Part of your valuable information could be left off the page if the page is too wide.

Your user's needs should be your top priority. Do you know what the user's needs are? Usability, user experience and interaction are all important. These are primary considerations you must factor in. The visitor's view, although keep in mind that it is not your view that is most important.

Use a navigation bar at the top to help visitors find the information they need right away if you have several pages on your web site. Include contact information, so they can speak with you if they'd like. Headings should be visible and clear, and paragraphs should be concise as well as easy to read.

Simplify your home page. People judge you based on that front page. Keep everything else to a minimum to avoid distraction, though be descriptive about what your business does, and your unique offerings.

Minimize the amount of clicking or scrolling visitors must do to access information. The more a user has to click or scroll around to find the information they seek, the more likely they are to give up looking for it. By combining pages that have content that falls below this number of words, aim for having at least 400 words on every page of your site.

Make sure that the computer you're using is advanced enough to run programs like Photoshop and Dreamweaver. The last thing you want to do is invest money into buying programs like these then realizing that you're computer can't run them, this can save you a headache and time by checking up on this.

Remember, designing a website does not need to be expensive. For all widely used web design tools that are costly, an equally effective tool can be found which doesn't cost as much. Free software, available online, is often just as useful as its expensive counterpart. You can save lots of money by using open source software.

Make sure your site includes a search box. This is really important, because people are accustomed to having that function, and when they want to find something on your site, they need to be able to find it. They may leave your site altogether if they can't find what they need.

Create a site map for your site. There are two things that a sitemap does. In the first place, they help readers better understand your navigation. They are able to find the information they need, and they know what else you have available. Two, site maps make optimization for search engines easier. It easier for the search engines to find and "crawl" your site.

Talk to a pro to learn a lot about web design. This virtually guarantees that you will improve, so long as you put in the effort.

Stay with a layout that is basic and not all that confusing so that you don't confuse yourself. Do this so that you get the basics down first then try your best to upgrade to an intermediate site and from there progress to a site that is more advanced in the end.

It might be best to look at alternatives to Flash. Flash can slow down visitors' computers, and make them unlikely to want to stay on your site. Also, you should keep in mind that a lot of mobile Internet tools, such as smartphones and tablets, will not display Flash. You could be cutting yourself off from a pretty large pool of potential visitors by using Flash.

With the amount of time that your visitors likely spend on social networking sites, it makes sense to add links to your site to let them share your content on their favorite social sites. You will gain valuable visitors to your site, as well as increased awareness of what you have to offer.

You've read the advice here and are ready to put it into action, so get ready to design your site! Start by sketching out a design and making lists of the content you'll need and you'll have your website online in no time.

Obviously the tips above don't cover every single aspect of web design. If there is more you need to know about the subject, you will have to research further. As you can see, though, the tips provided here will help you get and stay on the right path. Use these tips wisely to build a great site.

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