• The Ultimate Guide to Digital Marketing for Product-Based Businesses

    In the olden days of marketing – like, 20 years ago – designing a marketing plan for your product-based business was pretty straightforward. Mostly, you had to show how much better your product was than its competitors. That could mean running a taste test with random consumers and then telling people about it. It could mean paying a celebrity to wear your product to a major event. It could even mean just spending tons of money on commercials in which an actor looked really happy eating/using/looking at your amazing product. That is somewhat of a simplification, sure, but in general, that was the idea behind product-based marketing before the digital age. Today, things are different. Consumers are way more savvy. They can price-shop for products just like yours across the entire internet, which basically means the entire planet. They’re wary of the hard sell, and want to feel in control of the purchasing process. On the marketer’s side, the channels through which you can reach consumers have exploded. It’s not just TV, radio, and print anymore. You have mobile ads, browser ads, mobile apps, email, social media, live chat, text alerts…you get the idea. When you add in the fact…

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  • Influencer Marketing from A to Z: A Complete Guide for Businesses

    Did you know that consumers, on average, mention 56 brands per week during regular conversation? That one in every three customers finds your brand as a result of a recommendation? That new customers referred by existing customers have a 37% higher retention rate? The common denominator in all of these figures is credibility, and it’s the name of the game in marketing for 2016. With the rapid expansion of social media, brands no longer build credibility through purely organic word of mouth marketing, but through strategic online interactions. The key to maximizing your company’s marketing campaign is to become one of those 56 brands mentioned per week by as many people as possible. By leveraging social media and influencer marketing techniques, your brand and message will be broadcast to not only your loyal customers, but to thousands more. Why Influencer Marketing? In today’s online world, there is a tremendous amount of content, from businesses, consumers and individuals. As of 2015, more than 90% of digital marketers were actively publishing content on their websites and blogs, while over 1.5 billion consumers were actively publishing on Facebook. The result is an overabundance of content that has led to a 60% decrease in…

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  • 5 Awesome Digital Marketing Strategies for Niche Businesses

    While the internet has changed marketing for businesses of every shape and size, perhaps one of the most transformed over the past couple of decades has been the niche business. Pre-internet, niche businesses had to have products or services that would appeal to enough people to support the cost of advertising – which meant that many potential niche products never saw the light of day. Today, the situation is different. Niche products still have to make enough money to support their advertising costs, like any other business, but those costs have gotten so much lower, and ad reach so much wider, that the niche product and service market has boomed. Just think about some of the niche products or services you’ve come across in the past few years. Print-on-demand T-shirts. Super-exclusive (and expensive) matchmaking services. Every subscription box service out there, from Blue Apron (meals and recipes) to Birchbox (beauty products). The reality now is that if you want to create a line of handmade journals targeting 28-35 year old mothers of gifted kids in Laguna Beach, California, you can do it – and with the right digital marketing strategy, you can probably even become profitable. If this sounds like…

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  • Facebook Marketing 101

    It’s likely that you’re no stranger to the world of social media marketing, but did you know that Facebook is one of the most powerful social media tools you can use to market your business? As it stands right now, Facebook is the largest social media platform in the world, boasting upwards of 1.44 billion monthly users and more than 1.25 billion mobile users. In fact, Facebook is so dominant that the social media giant has more users than the total of China’s population. How’s that for impressive? Thanks in large part to its overwhelming popularity and rapidly adaptive nature, Facebook has become one of the go-to social media platforms of choice for marketers who want to engage their audiences, build an online presence, introduce new products, or simply make their brand more visible. If you’ve been wondering what Facebook marketing is or how to break into this treasure trove of marketing gold, this post will tell you everything you need to know. Why Is Facebook so Powerful? In addition to boasting a massive user base, Facebook is also fantastic for virtually every type of content distribution – from long-form posts to images and auto-play videos. Because of this, it’s…

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  • The Ultimate Content Marketing Battle: Creation vs. Curation

    If you’re working on your content marketing strategy, you’ve undoubtedly come up against this idea of content creation vs. content curation. Which is better? Which generates more leads? Which results in higher conversions? Which should you be prioritizing? It would be great if we could give you a single, straightforward answer. Of course, since your company is different from that company, which is different from that other company, well – we can’t. However, we can offer you some helpful guidelines to follow when you’re deciding how to work out your own creation vs. curation equation. For a more in-depth exploration, you might want to check out our CEO Shama Hyder’s new book, Momentum – Content Curation is one of the 5 principles she details. First, some definitions. You might already be clear on how content creation and curation differ, but here’s a quick primer just in case. Content creation: This is what you’re doing when you’re writing blog posts, creating infographics, or developing e-books that you then market to your audience. Content curation: This is what you’re doing when you’re gathering great existing content from around the web and sharing it with your audience. Pretty simple, right? Why should you…

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  • Winning the Hashtag Wars: How to Use Hashtags to Increase Your Reach and Strengthen Your Brand

    Hashtags can have a huge effect on your content and, therefore, your brand. How can you use them strategically to strengthen that brand and increase..

  • 4 Pro Tips For Using Instagram Stories To Market Your Business

    Here at Marketing Zen, our goal is to help our clients take their businesses to the next level – and one of the major ways that is accomplished is through digital marketing strategies that help build brand identity and create engagement.

  • 10 Expert Tips for Creating Stellar Email Content

    There’s nothing like staring at a blank email template to make you want to procrastinate with a few cat videos. Practically every business uses some sort of email marketing – however, it’s a tough thing to get just right. Think back to the last time you took a look through your promotions tab in Gmail. How many emails did you click on? 1? 5? Any? If you did open any, how many did you actually read? Now go one step further: Of those, did any make you actually click on a link? If you’re like most people, your engagement level goes down with each subsequent step. You might open 10 emails, read 3, and click on one or two links. Then the rest of the 150 marketing emails sitting in your inbox languish there for a couple of days or weeks before getting sent to Trash. In fact, overall click rates for companies that send 16-30 email campaigns per month range from a median of 6.3% to 7%, according to research by Hubspot. Although that may sound low, it’s not a bad number to use as a benchmark. Plus, the important  thing to focus on is not your current open…

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  • 10 Remarkable Strategies for Content Marketing

    It’s accepted wisdom these days that a blog is an important element of any solid business website. Not only does it provide benefits when it comes to SEO and social media, it also allows prospective customers more insight into the personality, culture, experience and expertise of a company. Unfortunately, what’s missing from many company blogs is a clear understanding of what it takes to take a blog from a perfunctory addition to a site to an effective and central element of a strong digital marketing strategy. Over the years, we’ve worked with both B2C and B2B clients across industries to create or revitalize blogs and make them into traffic-driving powerhouses for their sites, so we are intimately familiar with the ins and outs of making a blog successful. Here is an overview of the 10 most important strategies we’ve found are necessary for successful content marketing via a blog. 1. Start with a strategy. You wouldn’t approach any other aspect of your business without a strategic plan in place, so why “just start blogging” without first mapping out exactly what the objectives for your blog are, who your audience is, and how you’re going to appeal to them? First, you’ll…

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  • 5 Incredibly Easy Ways to Skyrocket Traffic to Your Blog

    How many emails do you get each week, on average, with subject lines promising the ultimate secret to getting massive amounts of blog traffic? If you’ll just sign up for their exclusive course, or buy their top secret guide, you too can learn the complex strategies involved in boosting your blog traffic sky high! The truth is, there are a few tricks to boosting blog traffic – but they’re not really secrets, and they’re definitely not complex or hard to implement. They simply involve new ways of approaching both your blog topics and the way you promote your blog. They can be used in combination or independently of each other – either way, they are surprisingly effective for being so easy to put into action. Here at Marketing Zen, our goal is to take our clients’ businesses to that next level – to help them move from ‘successful, growing business’ to ‘recognized industry leader.’ A large part of becoming that go-to leader in their field is establishing themselves as experts – and one of the major ways that is accomplished is through a robust, popular blog that gets comments and shares and engagement. So without further ado, here are five…

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  • Why Facebook Live will be Hotter than YouTube for Your Business

    Here at Marketing Zen, we’ve long been advocates of the power of video in marketing, both for our clients and ourselves. Our CEO, Shama Hyder, has hosted an online marketing show called ShamaTV for years, in which she shares digital marketing tips, interviews other experts in the field, and takes viewers behind the scenes at some of the events where she presents: For our clients, we create marketing videos designed to take their business to the next level, and make them into industry leaders, like this one we put together for Promax Nutrition: Video is a marketing channel that gets proven results. But up until now, most marketing video production has focused on prerecorded video. Live video just wasn’t usually attractive, or feasible, for many reasons, so businesses simply focused on using the most popular and successful platform for video – YouTube. And they got results – and still do. But the game is changing. Thanks to Facebook Live video streaming, marketing via live video is not just possible now – it’s wildly effective, and rapidly gaining in popularity. While YouTube still is – and will remain – a powerhouse in terms of video marketing, Facebook Live has shown itself…

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  • How To Dominate Your Industry Via Digital Marketing

    Coca-Cola. It’s such a ubiquitous brand, across the globe, that “Coke” has replaced the word “soda” in many parts of the country. When you have a cold, you reach for the Kleenex. If you get a cut or a scrape, you grab the Band-Aids. Need to make copies at work? You head over to the Xerox machine. Brands like these, that have become such household names that they are now actually the most common way to refer to the products they sell, used to have to spend millions on advertising – over years, and sometimes even decades – to get to that point. Today, any company with a great product and solid customer service can become a leader in their industry in only a fraction of that time, and for only a fraction of the cost – if they take advantage of the right digital marketing strategies. Whether your organization’s goal is to branch out and dominate a new market, to become the undisputed leader in your industry, or even to become a household name and join the pantheon of brands recognized on sight by the entire country, digital marketing can take you there. But only if you know what…

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