Why Your Business Needs a Digital Marketing Strategy


This week the lovely Jamie Teasdale of Propel Business Works  is sharing why having a digital marketing strategy is extremely important to really reach your target market and put more money in your bank account. Jamie’s expertise is creating digital marketing strategies and plans for businesses. This post has some seriously great information! Be sure to follow Jamie on social media using the links at the bottom of the post!

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Social media and blogs aren’t just for personal connection any more. Online communication is where the masses are. It’s where people are spending their time. That’s why your business needs a digital marketing strategy. According to the 2015 census 78% of U.S. households have a desktop or laptop computer, and over 74% have a mobile device. That’s an incredible statistic and it makes sense knowing how quickly we have adopted online communities as our new normal place to connect, interact, and find services and products we need.


It also means your audience, your clientele, your target market is there. Whether they are searching for an answer, clicking through ads that caught their attention, visiting an application to catch-up on relationships, shopping for something, leaving a review, or a plethora of other reasons, I guarantee your customer is online. It might be via a mobile, tablet or desktop device, but they ARE congregating with the masses – and they’re coming in hourly droves, sometimes even more frequently.

So, marketing to them where they are makes sense, right? That’s where digital marketing comes in. Digital marketing is different from physical marketing like print materials, signs, brochures, handouts, flyers and other pieces of collateral you have designed and printed. Digital marketing is virtual. It is marketing via communication to your target customer digitally where they are showing up online.

Having A Strategy Is Vital

Marketing in general can’t be done with a half-baked strategy or it will fall short or even fail completely. Spending money and time on marketing materials or support without first knowing who you’re talking to, what they need to hear, how often they should hear it, and how it should be presented is just a waste of valuable resources. (Tweet This)

Do you realize there are different demographics on different online sites? The people who show up on Facebook aren’t necessarily on Twitter or Snapchat. There is a specific and substantial reason for certain businesses to have a presence on Pinterest or on Instagram. Is your business one of them?


What A Strategy Should Include

A solid, researched, and customized-to-your-business digital marketing plan will tell you who you should be targeting and where you should be showing up in order to reach them. 

It will map out the types of emails you should be sending and how often, not to mention what posts you should be sharing, whether on your blog or on a social platform or directory. 

A unique plan will outline the best frequencies for communicating and will lay out your company’s style of communication so you and your team have a reference point every time something is sent out across the wifi waves.

Your plan should be easy to trust and should get your marketing ball rolling in the right direction so you begin increasing awareness, fans, and sales. But be sure to keep your eye on analytics, too. Monitoring what is working and what isn’t will propel your communication to improve.

Where To Start

I always tell clients to just start. All the research and planning can be an activity you pursue during your business planning sessions, or monthly strategy meetings. It isn’t rocket science and tools are available to us nowadays that were never more accessible or affordable.

If you already know who you are and where you need to be, start with one social site. Learn it. Become consistent on it. If you can blog, even once a month, that activity will fuel your social communication and get your creative juices flowing. How to layer on one marketing approach after another will depend on your business and industry, but don’t feel like you need to jump on all platforms or tackle all of the communication opportunities available to you all at once.

When you find yourself too busy with orders or doing the thing you do that you can’t handle all the planning and management that goes along with a digital marketing strategy, we’re here, ready, and eager to help. After all, this is OUR juice. It’s what we love to do and we happen to do it well!

Cheers to a strategic future ahead!

Jamie Teasdale

Propel Businessworks


Jamie’s professional experiences have instilled exceptional customer service and high standards into everything she does. A music and art enthusiast and animal lover, she has been a marketing junkie since before she can remember. For 10 years her passion for developing and energizing the visions of small business owners was ignited and she hasn’t looked back since.

Jamie’s professional experiences have instilled exceptional customer service and high standards into everything she does. A music and art enthusiast and animal lover, she has been a marketing junkie since before she can remember. For 10 years her passion for developing and energizing the visions of small business owners was ignited and she hasn’t looked back since.

What The Actual Eff Is A Target Market And How Do You Find Yours?

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When I have a virtual or in-person consultation about someone’s digital marketing needs, one of the first questions that I ask that potential client is, “Who is your target?”

A lot of the times the answer is, “ Well everyone and anyone that would want this yadda yadda product. “

Doh!

The internet is a big place Y'all and I’m sorry but not everyone and anyone is your target. Those are just the cold hard facts.

I know what you’re thinking right now, “Well Jade, what the actual eff is a Target Market and how do I figure out who my market actually is?”

The dictionary definition of Target Market is as follows "A particular group of consumers at which a product or service is aimed."

What a generic and simple thing right? It must just involve figuring out some simple demographics about the people I want to consume this product or use this service.

A target market is so much more than some simple demographics of 22-36-year-olds, dual income, no kids, in the city where you’re located. You need to actually figure out, what these people like to do, where are they hanging out, do they read or listen to podcasts, what makes them tick? Answering each of these questions plus a few more will help you create actual depth to the group of people you are trying to reach.

Once you’ve identified this group of people you can begin to talk to them through your posting and engaging by using the language they are actually using. You can begin paying attention to the trends that they are following and portray your content in a way that appeals to them and causes them to stop their scroll and read what you are actually talking about under your photo. Taking the time to research how your target moves, thinks and speaks through the world is going to help you sell more and sell it faster.

Identifying your target will also help when you are ready to outsource to someone like me by being able to tell me who we are talking too because I don’t want to cost you more money by talking to the people that we aren’t even targeting.

My homegirl Courtney of Creative Homeroom is a Jedi master of identifying your target market. This post of hers about the difference between Target Market and Ideal Client is a very quick and insightful read. Courtney and I are teaming up and teaching a three-part series of webinars on this actual topic and how to build your digital marketing strategy to reach them. The class is launching at the end of February. Please make sure that you are subscribed to the Maven Movement emails to be the first to know about the launch date and a discount!

Unlock The Power Of The Link In Your Social Media Profile

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What would you do if you woke up one morning to a notification on your social media that your profile contained a link that is not allowed? Because well it can happen. Instagram and all of the other social media platforms can reserve the right to restrict specific content that it feels is going against their community standards.

However, I will reiterate again that, any social media platform can do whatever they want. They exist because at the end of the day the platforms are business’ too. Just like you as a user that is on social media as part of your marketing plan to get your name out there to make money.

I’m not trying to hate on linktr.ee, in fact, the premise of it is excellent. You only get one link in your social profiles, but you have multiple things going on. I totally get it. But link tree is a 3rd party service, and we already know how Instagram feels about 3rd party services.  

The link on any of your social media is prime real estate and  SHOULD list your website. Say it with me now, “the link on any of my business profiles should be my website, not http://linktr.ee/yadayadayada. “ 
You want your business to become known, and the best way to do that is to have your business’ name in as many places as possible.  Plus when you have control of YOUR link, you have the power of the branding.

I know you’re thinking, “But Jade, what should I do instead?” Well, you should create your own optimized landing page. Since my team offers Squarespace sites and not Wordpress, Wix or Weebly I only know that you can do this in Squarespace because that’s the link that is sitting on all of my personal and my website clients social media profiles.  However, with a quick Google search, I have found that is, in fact, possible to also create an optimized landing page on Wordpress.

If you have a Squarespace site already up and running but are using linktr.ee on your social profiles let a girl help you out and create an optimized landing page for you to link on your social profiles.  If you are pondering a website overhaul or update and flipping between which platform is best, I’ll say Squarespace any time. Especially if you aren’t super tech savvy.
 

How To Use Instagram Stories For Business

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As a business owner, we all know that we should be using Instagram stories more to show off the behind scenes and real life of our brands. Are you struggling with WHAT to show in your stories? HOW often should you add to your stories? And WHY your business should be using Instagram stories? In this one hour workshop, we will discuss all of this and more. Instagram Stories For Business is geared towards, e-commerce sellers, brick and mortar stores, and service providers. You will leave with a link to the digital playbook of ideas to help your business succeed instead of getting skipped over on Instagram stories. 

This is an in-person workshop in Portland, but not to worry if you don't live in Portland I have a plan for you as well. Stay tuned. 

For more information and to register click HERE.

E-commerce Brick & Mortar Holiday Social Media Strategy Sessions

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Wanna kickass this in your social media marketing this upcoming holiday season? Well, it is that time of year when I open up social media strategy sessions so you can have a kickass holiday season. I understand it is June, and you have plenty of other things on your mind like all the summer things. Nevertheless, you need to start your marketing efforts as early as September 1 to kickass this upcoming holiday season.

I know what you are thinking; I can hardly rock my regular time social media marketing campaign, do you think I can change it for the holiday season? Yes, and absolutely yes, I know that you can change your social media mindset for the holiday season because the holiday season is approximately six weeks where people actually want to be sold to. It is approximately six weeks where people are going to be spending money. Six weeks where those people that have no idea of what to get for so and so on their lists are looking to any place for inspiration. Why shouldn’t they be looking at your social media feed for their much-needed inspiration?

This program is written with both the e-commerce seller and the brick and mortar store owner in mind because both businesses have the same common denominator; to make some damn money from doing what they love. We are going to talk about your holiday marketing efforts on the big three: Instagram, Facebook and Pinterest. Typically, I meet in July or August with clients for tropical cocktails and to talk about all things holiday marketing. It is fun and productive at the same time. Strategy Sessions are two hours long and can be split up between two different meetings. Sessions can be virtual or in person. However, if it is virtual, you will have to provide your own tropical cocktail.

One on one social media support from me for the entire holiday season, roughly November 1st- January 2nd is included in your kickass social media strategy. You see, this means I am that girl in your corner, cheering you on and available for any social media question that might arise. I will be one email or phone call away. We will begin our efforts with the two-hour strategy planning and implementation meeting in July or August, and your strategy will be ready to launch on September 1st. You will receive the Kickass Holiday Social Media workbook which is full of tips and tricks for each specific platform along with a place to write your goals. Other benefits you will get include a personalized listing of industry-specific hashtags, a personalized calendar of your business’ holiday events, promotions and time frame of when exactly your postings will achieve the best reach and start turning those likes into dollars. The Kickass Social Media Strategy will focus on content for your business’ Instagram, Facebook and Pinterest accounts. Therefore, these accounts must be set up and in working order prior to our first strategy meeting.

The early bird rate is $450 for this entire package if you book it before June 20th. After June 20th, the price will increase to $575.

For specific questions, please do not hesitate to reach out to me. I know you want your business to kickass this holiday season, and that is exactly what I want to help you achieve!

Ten Rad Nature Outdoor Phone Photography Tips For Social Media

New Zealand Wildflowers by Aaron Courter

New Zealand Wildflowers by Aaron Courter

If you've been following my Instagram for a while then you know that one of my favorite things to do is escape to nature. I'm lucky that I live in an area of the country where amazing hikes are only a quick drive away.  While I was hiking around Banff I realized that a photo can never do justice to all the amazingness that Banff National Park is in person.  It prompted me to think about how I can take better photos with my phone in an attempt to capture the majesty of Mother Nature. 

My brand photographer's husband always takes these beautiful nature photos on their hikes so I asked him if he would be interested in offering some of his tips to my readers.

Without further ado, here is Aaron Courter of Aaron Courter Photography.

If you want an incredible outdoorsy Instagram feed, you may need to break a sweat!  Walking out to a visitors platform or designated lookout point is a great start but some of the most incredible things to experience will have you walking a bit deeper into the forest. 

Let’s take the Oneonta Gorge for example. To get to this magical spot you have to scramble an obstacle course of tangled logs and then wade through an ice cold waist-deep river. Worth it? Totally, even if you accidentally drop your phone in the water. 

Here are a few tips you can take with you on your adventure:

1. Lighting is one of the most important things to consider what chasing that scenery. Nature doesn’t sleep in like we do and rarely does the magic happen at noon. In the early morning or evening, the colors get soft, vibrant and more even for your photo. 

2. Leave Early. Not only will you get better light but you will also beat crowds of people, especially if you are doing a popular hike. Be selfish and the first one to drink it all in!

3. Take the iPhone photo now, edit it later. There are so many apps out there, and so many options. Get the exposure right, snap the photo, and then just be present in the moment. You don’t need to upload it right away.

4. Get lower, get higher. 99% of the Instagram photos you’ll see from a specific vantage point will be 5-6 feet high. Get on the ground and see how the perspective is different. Climb a tree, walk backward up the hill, or dip it in the water if your phone is water-resistant.

5. Prepare for the trip. Check your sunrise and sunset times on your weather app for the light. There are also some great apps that get more specific for weather, shadows and light (Lightrac, Goldenhour, Dark Skies) that are very precise.

6. Don’t be afraid of weather. Sometimes there’s drama in rain or snow that you don’t see when everything is just right. Nature is rugged and powerful so embrace her dark side.

7. If you saw it on Instagram already, do something different. Anything.

8. Shoot through something. Put a branch a foot away from your phone camera when you’re photographing the mountain. Vignette the waterfall with a fern. Use the side mirror on your car. Get the mountain reflection on the lake without the mountain. 

9. Get to know your camera app. For the iPhone, single tap for your on what you want in focus, then press and hold to adjust the exposure and lock it in. iPhone cameras are smart but we are smarter, so learn how to boss it around. 

10.  Rules are meant to be broken occasionally, but for the love of all that is holy in nature, don’t zoom in. The photo quality degrades quickly. Force yourself to learn good composition instead and move with your feet. 



What is your favorite hike in Oregon?

I won’t tell you my favorite, but my second favorite hike is probably Mt. Thielson in the Umpqua National Forest. The trail takes you up to a mountain peak that feels about 30 feet wide and breathtaking views of the Cascades. The Rowena Crest area is also beautiful in April and May with wildflowers and views of the mountains.

I know that you recently went to Patagonia, as a bucket list item, why was Patagonia a place that you wanted to go? 

I always knew their jackets were warm so I wanted to see where they were made. I was severely disappointed when I found that Patagonia was just a region in Argentina & Chile filled with rugged, remote mountains, incredible wildlife and delicious food.

What is a good family friendly hike in the Portland Metro area that still has excellent Instagramability?

I’m not sure about Instagramability, but there is so much to see in Forest Park, from the Washington Park side to the far end past Germantown road. Also, the book Portland Hill Walks, by Laura Foster is fantastic, with great hikes close in and up the west hills.

Do you ever shoot hiking photos with your iPhone or just with your fancy cameras?

I’m very particular and I love my Fujifilm X series cameras that are always with me. They are small, light, simple and do exactly what I want them to. I would rather be happy with the image quality and have the experience of a real camera than just using an iPhone. I’m used to looking at photos close up, and iPhone photos don’t usually cut it for me. I always admire what people can do with iPhones. The same photo principles apply!

What’s one hike you’ve seen on Instagram that you now want to do?

If I’ve seen it on Instagram, I probably don’t want to do it that much. But I do use Instagram to see what other people have seen, and what the light may look like at certain times of day or weather.

How do you find out about hiking spots? 

Recommendations from friends are helpful or if I'm looking for a new hike, or www.oregonhikers.org always has good info!

After you've edited your rad photos don't forget to add the location tags when you post them to your social media. 

Wedding Professionals And Social Media

 

Wedding professionals what would your business look like if you started having an influx of website traffic, were generating more leads and didn't have to lift a finger? Sound too good to be true? 

Hey, I'm Jade, and this is what I do. I develop social media strategy, research hashtags, create content and maintain the social feeds for weeding professionals just like you.  I hear it all the time, "What do I write for the caption of this photo? I've written, erased and re-written it three times." "My hashtags aren't reaching like they used to."  

I know that you have editing to do, albums to create, proposals to send out, styled shoots to prep for, recipes to test, couples to meet in person and a personal life to enjoy. Don't let the investment of outsourcing your social media hold you back from doing what you do best, create or capture a perfect wedding day for the happy couple.

Your social media feeds are your online resume to the world, channels that you want to keep up to date and relevant when newly engaged couples are searching for their wedding vendors.  I offer social media strategy and planning, social channel management, and social media engagement packages. If you're thinking to yourself that some of these examples sound like something you are in need of let's chat. 

Pinterest And Your Business

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Pinterest, you are on it scrolling for ideas of how to decorate your home, what to make for dinner and even what gifts to give.  Have you stopped to think about how your business could benefit from a better Pinterest presence? 

Get ready for some cold hard facts:
*    200 million monthly users
*    70% of users are female
*    60% have children under 5
*    98% try new things that they find on Pinterest
*     1 out of 2 people have purchased because they saw it on Pinterest
*    Pins can bring your website traffic for years to come

If you are female niched business, product or service wise and you currently have little to no Pinterest presence you are entirely missing your target audience.  Up until a few weeks ago, I was this girl. I was perusing Pinterest for fun until I went to a lecture and learned what exactly  Pinterest could do you for my business. Now I am practicing the methods they taught me every day, I know like any social media it will not be instantly successful that it takes time, but a whole new level of client hangs out on this platform. 

 To make Pinterest work for you though you need to think and define your target audience. Do they travel, what kind of food are they eating, what are they searching for on Pinterest? Answer your target audience’s lifestyle questions with a board and pin relevant content to it. 


How To Share Your Content

  1. PIn consistently, like every day
  2. Don’t be afraid of the number of pins you have. You won’t get dinged by the algorithm for having too much content. 
  3. Organize your content onto relevant boards
  4. Optimize your website for pin click-throughs by adding the pin button to blog posts or products. 

I shared a bunch of links to Pinterest articles I’ve read and methods that I am using to grow my boards in the latest Maven Movement email that comes out on Tuesdays. If you aren’t on the list, you might want to consider adding your name.  Also feel free to follow my boards as I add resourceful social media articles to them. I also am always looking for new inspiration and boards to follow, so if you have a business account drop a link in the comments. 

 

What Is Your Instagram Neighborhood?

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The best piece of advice that I got recently was to step back and look at Instagram as an entire city but with three neighborhoods.  This resonates with me because in case you don't already know I moved to Portland via Chicago.  Chicago is a very neighborhood centered city, Wicker Park, Logan Square and Pilsen to name a favorite few. The beautiful thing about big cities is the many different neighborhoods inside of them, each with their character, their feeling, their vibe. 

If you happen to live in a big city, think for a moment about the places that you tend to spend a majority of your time.  How many different neighborhoods do you frequent? Obviously, the area that you live in but are there others that you travel to for a particular coffee shop or a one of a kind gift store that you find that unique item for someone? 

Keep this in mind as we step back to look at Instagram the same way as we are looking at a big city. There are three diverse neighborhoods within Instagram, the feed, the stories and the lives. However, the one similarity amongst all of them is that they each require a neighborly manner to thrive.  You know where you reach out and chat with a person and aren't just lurking neighborhood watching them.  

The Feed

This is obviously the epicenter of the city of the Instagram city. The feed is where the perfectly curated posts and thoughtful words live.  The space that gets the majority of the friendly neighbor to neighbor chatting.  

The Stories

Stories are north of the city center and are a welcoming community that shows a more personal and attainable side. Stories is a place to show more of what your every day looks like and who you are as a person.  The problem here is like any neighborhood place you tend to frequent if you get annoyed with the oversharing that someone is doing you turn your head and avoid contact with them.  This neighborhood is an excellent place to people watch because everyone is doing their own then but conversations are hardly ever started. 

The Live

The Neighborhood that everyone says is up and coming. Realistically this feature should have taken off like gangbusters but over a year later it's still that up and coming place. Some of the neighbors here are still just not sure what to do with it yet.   

By now you have undoubtedly figured out which two neighborhoods are your favorites. The two favorites you should be posting to frequently the other it's ok to make a weekly or monthly commute to, but you shouldn't forget about it all together.  

 

State of Instagram: Recent Updates

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There are two updates which happened on Instagram that I am excited to share with you.

1. The ability to have active hashtags in your profile. Seriously go to your phone, edit your profile and add your business specific hashtag to your profile. Having your personalized hashtag in your profile is a  way for people that are in your profile to click on your hashtag and see an entire representation of your work in just one click.

 

2. Reposting in stories. While this feature hasn't rolled out to everyone yet, it slowly will. This isn't going to be one of those 10K to play updates.  When your account gets the feature, you will be able to share new feed content directly to your stories. This will eliminate the taking a screenshot of your feed, blocking out the photo or video as a preview to get them to click over. Followers will now be able to click the story slide and be directly taken to the content in your feed.

To see if you already have this feature on your post click the paper airplane and in the “Send To” your story feed should be listed below the Facebook Story button.  Click your story name button and send. It will prompt you to a new story slide and you can write whatever information you want on the slide and press the story send to button.