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4 Ways To Make Internet Marketing Less Difficult

4 Ways To Make Internet Marketing For Your Business Less Difficult

Marketing, in general, can be a pretty tough nut to crack. Between the limitless online resources, offering limitless services and advice, and the near infinite directions to take, it’s easy to get confused or overwhelmed. One thing’s for sure: Internet Marketing is a necessity. It just is. Check out these Internet Marketing statistics:

  • 61% of global Internet users research products online. (Source: Interconnected World: Shopping and Personal Finance)
  • Search engine marketing is the rated the most-effective paid vehicle for content marketing. (Source: The Content Marketing Institute)
  • “Near me” interest searches have multiplied 34x. (Source: Think with Google — Micro Moments)
    51% of mobile local searches result in a store visit. (Source: The Google Mobile Playbook)
  • 48% of mobile local searches called a store. (Source: The Google Mobile Playbook)
  • 94% of smartphone users search for location info. (Source: The Google Mobile Playbook)

What these statistics tell you is that search rankings matter. They matter a lot. These stats also give you a clear view of your customer base. If you’re ignoring the need for a solid marketing strategy, you are making a big mistake. Many entrepreneurs that we’ve talked to over the years have had numerous reasons to not engage in the online arena that is internet marketing. In order to help, we’ve put together four tips to help you step it up.

Get Out Of Your Own Way

One, somewhat comical, excuse I get on occasion is, “We’re not interested in internet marketing,” or “We don’t believe in internet marketing.” It’s hard not to laugh when someone has this response. Internet marketing isn’t Santa Claus or the Easter Bunny. It’s real. The statistics are undeniable and the results are proof that it works. If you still don’t believe me, look at your competitors. You see those competitors on the front page of google? Those guys know a thing or two about internet marketing. Stubbornness is a sad reason to lose customers. Try being a bit more open to the idea of change. Your business is your livelihood, and growth should never be far from your mind, nor off of your to-do list.

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Get Help

Internet Marketing Agency iWebXpert Asheville NCDon’t try to do it all on your own. That’s the fast track to burning out. Consult an Internet Marketing Agency. Usually, agencies are happy to give your online presence the once over and provide a free consultation. Simply knowing where you’ve misstepped or left out key elements from your online marketing strategy is half the battle. Why not get some free advice? Odds are you’ve had many emails and calls to your business from agencies just like ours who want to help you. Don’t shrug that off. Don’t be dismissive. You’re only hurting yourself. One sure thing about the world wide web is that it’s constantly changing. What you knew last month or last year may not still be true today. It’s a pretty good bet that unless you yourself are constantly engaged in the ins and outs and new developments of online marketing, you’re likely to make mistakes. Some mistakes can cost you dearly. So here it is – a profound call-to-action – Get Help! Do your research and consult an internet marketing agency. You should also make sure you read reviews, check out their customers, and ask as many questions as you can think of.

Invest In Yourself And Your Business

Spending money sucks, especially when you don’t have much of it. The problem here can be summed up in one age-old adage, “You get what you pay for.” If you aren’t willing to make room in your budget to spend on services that improve your online presence, then it shouldn’t be a surprise to you when customers are patronizing your competitors businesses over yours. Presenting a solid and consistent brand online, and offline, creates brand awareness and consumer confidence. Basically, customers take you more seriously.

Spending money on marketing services isn’t the only way to invest. Invest in yourself, in your own knowledge. Learn about Search Engine Optimization – I’d recommend starting with Google. Google provides all sorts of resources for website owners to learn about and implement effective online marketing strategies. There are also countless other entrepreneurs and solopreneurs out there, right now, making money online, who want to share their knowledge with you. Try listening to one of the many podcasts you can find in iTunes. I do every morning while I shower and prepare for my day. Not only to I pick up new ideas and knowledge, it makes me feel charged up and ready to rock, even when the stress is piling up.

Set Routines

The easiest things to accomplish in life are those that are part of a regular routine. You’ve probably seen about 5000 Facebook posts about ‘how the most successful people start their day’, and there’s a reason for that. Routines are effective and ease the burdens of the constant decision-making that sometimes cripple us over-thinkers. Not only does it make it possible to accomplish big and long-term goals (notching out just a little bit each day), an effective routine is also known to affect overall happiness levels. Routines are good for work, exercise, and anything else that requires consistency to achieve success. Decide that you want to make small and regular steps towards your goals, and stop worrying about how much there is to do.

You’ve got this.

Asheville Web Design on WooThemes

Asheville Web Design Company iWebXpert Is Now An Affiliated Woo Worker

Asheville Web Design WooThemes AffiliateWe are excited to let everyone know that we are now affiliated with WooThemes – Asheville Web Design! We’ve done a lot of work we are extremely proud of for our clients, and we now have the endorsement of one of the most popular WordPress development agencies in the business. WooThemes proudly (and rightfully) boasts their effectively bootstrapped support and services for over hundreds of thousands of WordPress users all over the world. As an affiliate, we intend to continuously provide our help in offering people the resources needed to achieve their online goals by providing the level of service and support synonymous with our new affiliate’s well-earned reputation.

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Custom Web Design

Our Asheville based web design firm will pursue any and all avenues available to provide your business with the best possible online representation of your goods and services. We pride ourselves in skills and a resourcefulness that allows us to make your website custom and unique to your market. While we may not be ‘reinventing the wheel’, we are working diligently to stand out from the rest in vast arena of competitors. We do this by means of our in-depth and personal attention to you, your business, and your customers.

Brand Marketing

iWebXpert approaches your project with a thorough ‘getting-to-know-you’ phase. We want to know as much about your business and your company’s personality as possible. Getting to the root of your need always takes a little time.

  • What is working?
  • What isn’t working?
  • Who is your ‘Perfect’ Client?

These are just a few of the questions that are imperative to finding the correct and ideally effective online solution for your business website and online presence. Once we have a handle on it, we tackle it. Not only will we produce a fantastic website for you, we also make sure that ALL of your marketing and social representations have a Brand Marketing cohesion. This enables increased brand recognition and awareness. It lets your customers know that you take your business and reputation seriously – just like We Do!

Need Help With Your Website?

We want work with you to ensure your business has a solid online presence. Our consultations are free and full of plenty of worthy advice. Even if you aren’t ready to start a website project today, we can help you understand the steps to getting there efficiently and effectively. Give us a call today, or fill out our Interest Form for a FREE Web Design and Brand Marketing Consultation!

iWebXpert and Big Town Small Business Featured in Bank of America

It’s been a year since we were in the midst of making our first season of Big Town Small Business. This time last year,  I believe we may have been around Lake Placid.

Now it seems that marketing your small business with the likes of video production and webisodes is finally catching on in larger circles. So much so that Bank of America has written a feature for their Small Business Community. The best part is: They interviewed our very own Grand Poobah, Jacob Ballard, and talked about our Big Town Small Business road trip!

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While our Asheville Web Design and Marketing business, iWebXpert, has a home base (Asheville), Jacob and I truly love to travel. There’s something special and exciting about getting to know so many different communities. It helps us as online and business marketers, to sharpen our ninja marketing skills and to continuously be adding to our advertising arsenals. With that in mind, check out the article HERE.

THEN – come back here and comment! Let us know what you think! We also want your help in planning our second season of Big Town Small Business. What US cities do YOU think we should get to know? What out of the way roadside attractions should travel junkies like us be looking for?

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Click HERE to read the article on Asheville Web Design Company iWebXpert and Video Marketing for Small Business

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Why Businesses With Online Marketing Videos Kick Ass

Videos are a must have component of a website these days when representing a business online. Websites which incorporate videos are able to engage visitors longer and thus increase their ranking in the search engines. Also, video bookmarking sites like YouTube and Vimeo offer very effective SEO tools of their own, which can help boost search engine rankings.

Online marketing videos are quickly being identified under the heading ‘content marketing’ and the web is becoming saturated with it. Its estimated that 92% of marketers use content marketing, and about 60% plan to incorporate it into their budgets. As early as 2009, SEO guru Bruce Clay was demonstrating how organic searches would favor websites with video or ‘engagement objects’ as he refers to them, and spoke at length about their importance at the Search Engine Strategies Conference in San Jose in 2009:

As Clay suggests of course, greater power in search engine variables can be attained by hosting one’s own video content on a dedicated server.

The power of online video is that almost any level of production value can be brought to bear on a video asset, anything from a webcam blog to a polished commercial can be used to promote a product or service with great effect. Views can be tracked and conversions vs. views can also be tracked in a manner which cannot be matched in a broadcast or print application. Niche markets can be identified and targeted using the metrics extracted from google.

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When creating a video for online advertising, it is important to ask several questions. Simply attempting to rank in organic searches may not be enough. Video bloggers have achieved great results by marketing services, endorsing products, or simply marketing themselves as a personality or entertainment. Original content as entertainment is an ever increasing phenomenon on the web with how-to videos and comedy shorts being contenders for most viewed. Netflix and other large content providers are carving an ever increasing share of the cable and broadcast market. Many in the industry believe that a ‘cord cutting’ phenomenon is about to take place, where viewers get their entertainment solely from the web. Many people report having cut this cord altogether. Using venues like Hulu to watch first run prime time programming on demand. Large advertisers are of course taking full advantage of embedded ‘pre-roll’ ads on venues like YouTube, which is its main source of revenue, and sharing small amounts of the proceeds with content creators. More revenue can be made by becoming a google partner, and delivering time sensitive original content to YouTube for a larger share of ad profits. This seems to be a tough nut to crack except for an elite few who can draw traffic in the hundreds of millions to view their videos. It seems lofty, but both organic video content and PPC ads can be useful to a small or medium size business. A small business should not ignore its potential to target a local niche market using an AdSense campaign.

As important in other mediums, proper branding has become a staple on the web, creating videos that contain graphics and animation are an effective method of propelling a brand. Videos can also be powerful incentives, call-to-action conversion can be achieved by embedding offerings to customers within content. Affiliate marketing could not have existed before the internet but the most propelling component of affiliate marketing has been of course video. Even video with simple text animation of a voiceover, can be a highly effective conversion tool if the voiceover is compelling. Storytelling is a key component of these videos, and many of the videos use stories combined with graphics to drive conversion traffic through a landing page or portal.

Seven key components of successful online videos:

  • Good Branding
  • Compelling voiceover
  • Rich with graphics and animation.
  • Good Call-to-Action.
  • Good organic ranking across various video websites.
  • Targeted PPC campaign through AdSense.
  • Original Content

For small business, keep your content organic and natural, and tell your story.
At iWebXpert, we are on the cutting edge of video production combined with the latest methods of using them as traffic driving tools.

Let’s Make A VIDEO For YOUR Business!
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Contact us HERE or call (828) 738-5199 to set up an appointment to discuss YOUR video.

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3 Connected Business Trends for 2014 and their Impact

Interactive technology continues to be the guiding influence around technological trends in today’s business world. From mobile apps to 3D printers, an array of technological trends are swiftly changing the marketplace not only for the service economy, but also for manufacturing. New tools and systems are emerging which are going to allow the examination of statistics on an unprecedented scale. As the ability to gather and process data becomes more rapid, the need for a business entity to store and see the ‘big picture’ of their data has become necessary. This phenomenon has thus been coined ‘Big Data’, and it will become a crucial concept in emerging markets as well as existing ones.

Three connected business trends to seriously examine in 2014 are:

  1. Data Analytics goes mainstream. It will become necessary for the everyday business user to become somewhat proficient with data analysis. Analytics will NOT be tracking by SEO specialists and data scientists. Business owners must now become aware of such data to incorporate into their ad budgets. As google increases its interactivity with regards to AdSense and PPC, the pressure will increase on decision makers to build a knowledge base of analytics.
  2. Cloud-based business intelligence will also be a key component of analytics features, and fueling this will be an avalanche of outside-the-firewall mobile apps which will allow vendors and customers to communicate. Cloud services have ripened to such a degree that businesses will have to rapidly adopt them in order to keep up.
  3. Finally, underpinning Big Data’s movement to the Cloud will be the ease of and speed of database construction. Modeling and prototyping of various systems can now be accomplished in a few hours, performing tasks that took the most powerful mainframes several days. New businesses wishing to compete in existing online marketplaces will turn to the Cloud.

Even though many of the large IT companies are somewhat fluid on the definition of ‘Big Data’ , there is no doubt that it will affect all aspects of business communications and will even affect how presentation modes are given with regards to arcs or trends. Storytelling in presentations will become more evident as personnel attempt to grasp the concept of ‘Big Data’. Proprietary mobile apps will snowball while startups will use Cloud and 3D printed prototyping to bring innovation to emerging markets.

What do you think about ‘Big Data’ and the changing IT Arena? Sound off below…

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Feel free to contact us HERE or call (828) 738-5190 to set up an appointment for consulting.

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10 Ways Twitter Can Help Your Business

When clients ask me which social networks they should be a part of, Twitter is more often than not on top of the list. For a platform built around communication in 140 characters or less, it delivers a surprising number of benefits.

Here are ten ways that Twitter helps bring success to your business, regardless of the field you’re in:

  1. Keep track of specific topics and trends. Hashtags. Hashtags have revolutionized the power of social media to connect people with similar interests. Use TweetDeck or Hootsuite to easily keep track of the hashtags associated with your business. At the same time, use hashtags to categorize your tweets to make it easier for people to find you.
  2. Grow a following. By following accounts that are of interest to you, you’re likely to have many of them follow you back. Simply engaging (retweeting and favoriting) with other users practically guarantees that you will gain new followers. It’s not hard to reach 100 followers. With consistent use, you could have a following of 500, 1,000, or more in a matter of months.
  3. Drive traffic to your website. Twitter consistently ranks among the top sources of traffic to my clients’ websites. Use Twitter to point your followers to your blog and your products and services, but maintain a balance between business and pleasure. Whether 50/50 or 80/20, do what works for your brand to make sure you’re not just constantly promoting yourself.
  4. Become an authority figure. Deliver information and share your expertise. Soon, your followers will think of you as a source of knowledge in your chosen field.
  5. Stay top of mind. Interact with your followers, “favorite” their tweets, give them a retweet or a mention, and they will be reminded that you are an engaging, conscientious member of the business community. Maybe they’ll think of you next time they’re in need of the services you offer.
  6. Follow what’s happening in real time. Getting breaking news from cable is so 20th century. For live, real-time information on current events, Twitter is the place to be.
  7. Drive customer engagement with contests and promotions. Twitter is a great place for giveaways and discounts. It’s easy to measure the response and the engagement and it helps to bring in more followers. Consider a “Retweet to win…” style contest to go viral with your promotion. Put a few advertising dollars behind it for even more power and reach.
  8. Deliver excellent customer service. Twitter offers yet another channel for customers to express their opinions and for you to respond to their needs. Be preemptive by delivering instructional videos or answers to common questions. Respond to customer complaints in a timely manner (i.e. ASAP) and they will likely forgive whatever issue they had in the first place.
  9. Give your followers a behind-the-scenes look at your business. Consumers love to feel like they have exclusive access to the inner workings of your company. Shows them a little of what happens behind the curtain, and your customers will develop a personal relationship with your brand.
  10. Connect with people who otherwise aren’t reachable. People are more likely to reply via social media than cold calling or unsolicited email. Just be sure to connect in a personal, authentic way, and you may be surprised just how accessible people are.

Even though Twitter is a modern platform, a little common sense communication and marketing know-how will go a long way. Just remember to be authentic and genuine. Use Twitter consistently, remember the advice above, and your business can succeed with social media too.

Interested in learning more about how social media can help your business be successful? Contact iWebXpert today for a free consultation.

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CrossFit Fundraiser Video Coverage: Bowen II

 CrossFit Boxes Unite for Bowen II Fundraiser in Asheville

On August 4, 2013, the iWebXpert TV crew headed out to CrossFit Pisgah in Asheville for the Bowen II fundraiser. Captain Jeff Bowen was a local Asheville firefighter who tragically passed away in the line of duty on July 28, 2011. This was the 2nd annual CrossFit fundraiser to benefit the mother, wife, and 3 children that Captain Bowen left behind in his final act of selfless heroism.

iWebXpert at Bowen II CrossFit fundraiser
We took our gear out to the event in the hopes of capturing some exciting footage of CrossFitters working out for this great cause. We ended up getting so much terrific footage, we decided to throw together a montage video as a tribute to all the participants and volunteers who helped make the event such a success. See if you can spot our own Jacob Ballard wielding that kettlebell!

Bowen II CrossFit fundraiser box jumper
The workout consisted of deadlifts, box jumps, single-arm kettlebell thrusters, burpee pull-ups, and two separate 1-mile runs involving three sets of stairs, a bridge, and a wicked uphill trek that just about everyone accurately described as “brutal”.

There were members of a large number of local boxes in attendance, including CrossFit Pisgah (who also organized the event and donated their gym, as well as handling promotion), CrossFit Asheville, Summit, Blue Ridge, Brevard, Catamount, Hendersonville, and CrossFit 2311. Members of other local gyms came out to show their support as well, including Hard Exercise Works and the local YMCA’s. Delicious paleo-friendly meals and popsicles were donated by Fuel Food Truck and Catering, and Threshold Provisions was on site promoting their healthy, organic snacks.

Bowen II was sponsored by CrossFit Pisgah, Community Fitness Events, The Southern Kitchen and Bar, Early Girl Eatery, CrossFit 2311, Threshold Provisions and iWebXpert. Ultimately this fundraiser would not have been possible without all the people who showed up to work out. Time and time again, Asheville’s CrossFit and fitness communities come together and show their unfailing support for causes like this. It was truly inspirational to witness. And participating was a blast; we’ll definitely be back next year!

Bowen shirt at CrossFit fundraiser
Click here to learn more about donating to the family of Captain Jeff Bowen.

Artist credit: the background songs we used in the video are “Faster Stronger” by Kanye West, “Too Close” by Alex Clare, and “Radioactive” by Imagine Dragons. Music was remixed and edited by Chris Jean-Jacques.

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