difference between marketing and advertising

This Is the Difference Between Marketing and Advertising

Marketing and advertising seem to go together in people's minds as much as peanut butter and jelly or milk and cookies. But if you are an SME looking to invest in promoting yourself, you would be doing yourself a great disservice if you were unable to identify the key differences between the two. In fact, not isolating and using these vital areas correctly could mean slow sales and the lack of that all-important customer interaction to generate future business.

Let us break down for you the clear difference between marketing and advertising and explain how you can utilize both to ensure success in your business.

What Is Marketing?

Although it may seem rather vague the roots of marketing are in fact very simple. Marketing's main focus is making sure that the product or service develops a link to the customer. Many things can make this happen, meaning advertising is one of the many tools to be found under the broad umbrella of marketing. Other branches of marketing would include things such as product and brand design, market research, and data mining.

The goal? Starting a conversation with the customer and leaving the door open for future business. You should be present in your target audience's mind when they need you. It is clear to see then that marketing involves playing the long game and not leaving anything to chance. This is understandable as the time it takes for someone to get familiar with what a brand represents and then know where to turn to when they have that need takes time. But when an effective marketing strategy is put in place, when people do turn to you it normally is for the long haul. In order to achieve this the fundamentals of marketing are always utilized. These are known as the 4 P's: Product, Place, Price, and Promotion.

Knowing where and how to strike your blows by targeting your core audience, presenting them with a product or service that you know they will be interested in, at a price that you know they will be happy to spend, makes up all the key elements of a robust marketing plan.

What Is Advertising?

Advertising has one simple purpose, to raise awareness about your brand, product, or service. It makes up that crucial final P out of the 4 pillars of marketing, promotion, making it a single strategy.

This may be done in a variety of ways however one common factor would be that you need to buy this visibility, be it through TV, radio, or on the internet via Pay Per Click (PPC) services such as Google or Facebook ads. Additionally, there is usually an advertising campaign that runs for an intense time period.

A good advert sparks curiosity and can be the hook needed to entice your customer. This aspect is vital and used to be the primary way of informing your clients of your service or product. But if you were to focus solely on advertising as a business, thinking that it is the main way you will get customers, you would be selling yourself short. How could this be illustrated?

The Key Difference Between Marketing and Advertising

Imagine you want to catch fish. If you were to go out and cast your net every day, you may be successful. Some days you would catch more and other days you would catch less. But importantly you were out there doing the work. This is like advertising. However, what if you make a plan to ensure that you fished at the optimum time. You checked your location to see where most of the fish were, and at times changed your approach by using bait to catch the fish, how much more successful would you be? No doubt you would agree that the second option would be more effective. This essentially is like having a marketing strategy. In marketing, you still advertise however it is a much more measured approach.

This is all the more important today as the average customer has changed drastically. Due to the advent of the internet experts estimate that we see upwards of 5000 adverts a day. So making your business stand out among the white noise of modern-day advertising requires a lot more effort on your part. As the marketing guru, Seth Godin says "In a crowded marketplace, fitting in is a failure. In a busy marketplace, not standing out is the same as being invisible." Marketing is also measurable, with you being able to use the information from your interaction with people to your advantage either by adapting your advertising strategy or even your product.

The film industry does this regularly with test screenings. Pretty Woman, Titanic, and Sunset Boulevard are all famous examples of movies that used their marketing strategy to change their final product and with successful results.

Key Factors in Marketing Strategies

So what methods and practices would be best for your business? Well, good marketing adds value to the customer but great marketing also means you start to optimize your leads. This is again one main difference between marketing and advertising. Marketing and not advertising alone drives business. A great example would be something like online content creation.

If you are consistent in providing good content on a platform like Instagram or Facebook then you will start to have interactions with potential customers. But not just any customers. These are people that you know are actually interested in your business. This is a great choice for SMEs because it can be relatively cheap to do however can yield a core customer base. Each business is different however, therefore taking the time to understand your customer base will determine the best route for you and your business.

Making Them Work for You

If we were to give you one piece of advice about the use of marketing and advertising it would be this. Use both of them! The difference between marketing and advertising is that one is developing your business and the other is purely presenting it. Remember, advertising without marketing your business would be like getting in a car and hoping that you have enough gas to get you to where you want to go. By doing both you can have peace of mind that you will be able to reach your final destination.

To guarantee that your business will reach the heights that you want it to, you can rely on EraserFarm to give you all the advice you need to map out a successful marketing strategy or advertising campaign.

Contact us and we'd be more than happy to help!

marketing agency in florida

7 Reasons to Hire a Marketing Agency in Florida

The average US business spends about 11 percent of its total budget on marketing. That's a lot of money, but when done right, efficient marketing can significantly boost your visibility in an increasingly crowded marketplace.

As a small business, marketing costs can become overwhelming, especially if you have an in-house marketing team. Thankfully, there are marketing agencies that can help ease the burden of marketing. Partnering with the right marketing agency in Florida can help keep you streets ahead of the competition.

The demand for outsourced marketing services has skyrocketed over the years, thanks to the convenience and reliability marketing agencies afford companies. But exactly what benefits should you expect by choosing a marketing agency over an in-house marketing team?

In this post we'll discuss what you stand to gain by working with a Florida marketing agency and how to choose a reliable one.

1. It’s More Affordable

The total cost of recruiting, training, and maintaining an in-house marketing team can be expensive. Few SMEs can comfortably afford it.

Hiring a full-time marketing manager, graphic designer, content marketing expert, web designer, and social media manager can set you back hundreds of thousands of dollars annually. When you outsource marketing services, you pay only a fraction of what you’d pay an in-house marketing team. Even better, you get to forget about employee health care benefits, paid vacations, and so on.

2. You Benefit From Unparalleled Experience

Top marketing firms usually have a team of experts who are highly experienced in different marketing approaches, including video marketing and social media marketing.

A reliable marketing agency brings a wealth of specific knowledge on a variety of issues. They know how to address a diverse range of challenges and scenarios that you’ve probably never faced before. With such a team on your side, you are guaranteed immediate results for your marketing efforts.

3. You Get Access to Cutting Technology and Marketing Tools

Investing in the latest marketing infrastructure and tools can a highly cost affair for a small business. Training your marketing team on how to use these tools also adds to the costs.

The best marketing agencies continually invest in the latest technology and software to enhance efficiency, performance, and productivity. When you hire such an agency, you get to benefit from this technology without having to purchase it yourself. You gain access to premium-level software, services, and analytical data reports minus the charges.

4. You Maintain Staff Efficiency

Many small companies try to bypass the costs of hiring an in-house marketing team by giving marketing tasks to their existing staff. The problem with doing so is that you overburden your employees. With all that burnout, efficiency goes down, and productivity will inevitably suffer in the long run.

Besides, when you involve so many people in your marketing efforts, your entire marketing campaign likes consistency.

Hiring a competent digital marketing professional can help you optimize your marketing strategy while allowing your staff to focus on what you hired them for.

5. Scaling up Your Marketing Strategy Is Easy

As your business grows, you may need to scale up your marketing efforts. With an in-house marketing team, the only to increase output is to employ more employees, which is both costly and time-consuming.

Marketing agencies typically have readily available workers who they can deploy at a moment's notice in case you need a bigger and bolder internet marketing strategy.

In addition, these agencies already have the skills and experience required to help companies scale faster. For instance, if there’s a need to start using social media ads, you won’t need to train someone on how to do it. The digital marketing agency you hire will already have the resources to get it done.

6. You Get an Outside Perspective

When you work with an in-house marketing team for years, you tend to have tunnel vision. You hardly get new marketing ideas, which can slow down your growth. Sometimes, your employees may hesitate to express concerns over your stale, inefficient marketing efforts for fear of their jobs.

Forward-thinking companies, however, are always open to new perspectives. A top marketing agency can inject the fresh inspiration you need to turn your marketing campaign around. These marketing professionals are skilled in looking at your company from the consumer’s perspective and can help you implement what works.

7. You Get to Enjoy Built-in Incentives by the Agency

Every reputable marketing agency knows that delivering great results boosts their resume. Each new client they work with is a potential reference.

You can thus rest assured that when you partner with a marketing agency, you have someone who’s deeply invested in your success. The more fruitful your marketing efforts are, the better your marketing partner’s future opportunities are.

How to Choose the Best Marketing Agency in Florida

Now that you’ve seen the benefits of hiring a marketing agency, chances are you’d like to hire one soon. Here are a few tips to make sure that you get the right agency for your business.

Consider Location

Choosing a marketing agency based in your area is generally the best move. Chances are you’ll need to hold in-person meetings with your marketing services provider, and the last thing you want is to drive four hours to another city to do so.

Hire Experience and Expertise

How long has your potential marketing agency been on the field? Do they have experience marketing the product or service you offer? What is their success track record?

The answers to the questions above can help you choose an agency that best suits your marketing needs.

Consider Their Prices

One of the reasons you’re hiring a marketing agency is to make marketing more affordable for your company. While you don’t want to go for the cheapest marketing services in all of Florida, you also want to avoid agencies that charge extortionate rates. Find an agency that fits within your budget.

Choose the Right Marketing Agency in Florida

Your marketing efforts can make or break your business. One way to build and sustain an affordable, robust marketing strategy is to work with a reputable marketing agency in Florida.

Are you interested in reliable digital marketing services? Please contact us today.

choosing a marketing agency

7 Factors to Consider When Choosing a Marketing Agency in Tampa

Here's the deal: the demand for marketing agencies has risen by a whopping 5% over the last couple of years alone. So, if you're wondering how to get the best references and reviews, it's time to get in touch with an advertising agency near you as soon as possible.

Want to know why your regular blog posts aren't drumming up much business?

If you run a business in Tampa, FL, and need help with marketing, a professional team can help. Here are the top seven factors to consider when choosing a marketing agency!

1. Location, Location, Location

When it comes to choosing the best marketing agency in the biz, it's all about location, location, location. What we mean by that is that you want to choose an advertising agency that's nearby, particularly if you live in the Tampa Bay area.

That's because adding travel costs to an already priced to build can be enough to put you over the edge. Plus, holding in-person meetings will be much more convenient for you. As a result, taking the closest marketing agencies can lead to lower stress and higher productivity levels.

2. Compatibility Is Key

Believe it or not, compatibility is key when it's time to finalize your partnership with a new marketing agency. Some things to consider are whether or not their objectives or mission match up to yours. If you don't hold similar values, you and your business might not be the right clients for them.

Also, think about whether you and your new advertising agency have any similarities. Although it might be hard to tell when you first meet, putting your brand first will help you figure out if it is a good fit in the end.

3. Basic Background Checks

If you haven't conducted a basic background check on your potential marketing company yet, you're already making a big mistake. This classic rule of thumb should be followed every single time you decide to work with a new business partner.

This is great for analyzing everything from the advertising agency's:

  • Personnel count
  • Financial position
  • Managerial stance

Not only that, but you can also get a better idea of the agency is a part-time or full-service one. Of course, if you want to hire a part-time advertising agency, conducting a background check is even more necessary.

4. Classy Clientele Lists

The fastest way to get to know a marketing company is to look at its clientele. This can easily show you the level that the potential organization is functioning. Needless to say, those with impressive clientele lists are often the most reliable.

The higher-end your business is, the more like that you will choose an ad agency that is very well-known and popular. Finding one with a similar customer base to your company is another great life hack as well.

5. Big Projects at Budget Prices

Before you get into business together, you should think about both you and your partner's financial positions. That's because it's possible to hire a marketing company that you can afford. On the other hand, you don't want to hire an advertising agency that's so expensive that you'll be at risk of going out of business either.

What should you do? The answer is simple: do your best to find one that fits within your company's financial budget. In addition to this, the advertising partner you choose should have a solid position financially as well.

While you're at it, you might as well view the payment processing procedure for your marketing agency too. Once you understand what their requirements are, you'll be able to meet them without a hitch.

6. Credibility in the Tampa Community

Another thing to look out for is that the advertising agency of your choice has high credibility within the Tampa community. As we talked about above, the customer of the organization is a big factor that shows how authentic they are. Therefore, the image, integrity, and authenticity of the business should be considered thoroughly.

This can easily be done by looking up their past business records. Also, you should be able to access the companies information history via their website too. Problem solved!

7. Excellent Experience and Expertise

Last but not least, it's time to talk about how vital excellent experience and expertise are in business relationships. In case you didn't know, some agencies choose to focus on a specific aspect of marketing that may not line up with your company's vision.

In that case, it pays to hire a business that is somewhat similar to how you advertise your brand. But that's not all.

Consider the years of experience that your future business partner has in the industry as well. Trust us - this will save you both a ton of time and money in the long run.

Curious About Choosing a Marketing Agency?

Still curious about choosing a marketing agency you can trust?

If you're nodding your head yes, we are here to help you out.

When it comes to creating a solid digital marketing strategy, we are practically experts. From location to background checks, we've got everything you need to choose the most amazing advertising agency for you.

Feeling stumped on how to find the perfect marketing agency in Tampa?

If that is the case, we've got you covered. Not only do we understand advertising, but we know how to complement your brand voice too. As if that's not enough, we also have the experience and the expertise you need to succeed.

Want to learn more about different types of advertising? Contact us to find out how to target an audience today!

building a brand

Building a Brand: The Marketing Techniques to Use in Your New Business

Looking for different ways to boost your brand identity? Maybe you're just starting up a new business. Perhaps you're going through a rebrand. Whatever the case might be, it's important to establish a brand that your customers can relate with. The more personable and transparent your brand, the more customer loyalty you'll build. If this is your first time building a brand, then you have nothing to fear. There are several concrete steps you can take towards building a brand identity for your business.

See below for several techniques you can use while building a brand and establishing yourself in your industry.

Find Your "Why"

Behind every profitable and successful brand is an underlying purpose behind it. Think of a successful company, and you'll be able to identify its mission. The clothing brand Patagonia has the purpose of building high-quality products without harming the environment they love. Target's purpose is to provide the best products at a reasonable price, hence their motto of "expect more, pay less".

In order to start building your brand, you need to find the "why" behind your company's existence. You need something that will resonate with your target audience. Something that will dictate every move and business decision that you make. The purpose that you define will help your entire company clarify its objective. More importantly, this will help you figure out how to build a brand identity around your "why". For example, if your purpose is to offer more help to the consumer, doing things like placing live chat on your site and offering discounts on products will back it up.

Hire a Marketing Agency

Odds are, you didn't start a company with the intention of focusing on establishing its brand and building a successful marketing campaign. You created it to drive revenue and grow your business while helping customers in your industry. However, without a successful brand strategy and marketing plan, your products and services will never be enough. If marketing isn't your forte, then you can turn that weakness into a strength for your company by hiring a professional marketing agency. They'll be able to help you with things such as search engine optimization, video production, and designing art on your website in order to double-down on your brand. Even if you're having trouble establishing what your brand identity should be, the marketing agency you hire can help. They'll walk you through each step of the process to identify and build a brand that you'll be proud of.

Consider Your Target Audience

At the end of the day, the brand identity that you choose must resonate with one person in particular: your target client. If it doesn't, then all your time and effort into building a brand will be for not. For that reason, it's always helpful to create buyer personas for your company's products and services. These are made-up "clients" that you use to study your customers and how your brand will appeal to them. For example, say you're a nutritionist. You might create a buyer persona named Jim. Jim is anywhere between the ages of 30 to 50 and is looking to get back in shape. He wants to lose weight but doesn't have the time in the day to focus on working out and eating right. He has three kids and works a job that requires 40 to 50 hours out of him each week. From that buyer persona, you can assume that "Jim" is looking to work with a brand that offers him a fully-customized diet plan that will work with his schedule. Since he doesn't have the time to focus on it, he needs a nutritionist who will keep him accountable. Building buyer personas can help you directly understand why your brand intrigues certain customers more than others.

Use Color Psychology

Whether you knew it or not, there are subliminal ways that companies integrate the tone of their brand into your head. It's called color psychology, and it can be a tremendous way to help build your brand identity.

Color psychology is the thought that different colors exude unique emotions and behaviors into the people that lay eyes on them. Each color has emotions and tones that are specific to them. Knowing what these tones are can help you as you design your logo, website, sales collateral, company signs, and much more. If you've already designed the colors of your logo, then be sure to use the tones of those colors to strengthen your brand. Odds are, you subliminally chose those colors for a reason!

Build a Mission Statement

Every championship sports team has a battle cry. Every superhero has a famous catchphrase. Your company needs a mission statement to use as you try to live out your brand each and every day. Now that you know what your "why" is, you can build a mission statement that reinforces it. This mission statement can be used on your website, to appeal to your clientele, inspire your employees and so much more!

Building a Brand: Find What Makes You Different

The most important thing in building a brand is finding something that will separate your company from the rest of the pack. Be sure to read this article on 5 incredible examples of brand strategies that you can draw inspiration from as you build your brand.

For more inquiries, please reach out to us via our contact us page and we'll be happy to assist you!

brand strategy examples

Brand Engagement: 5 Successful Brand Strategy Examples

Are you trying to up your brand engagement? Customer retention relies heavily on brand engagement, and if you're not working on maintaining that, you might be seriously missing out.

There are plenty of strategies that you can use to successfully increase your brand engagement, but taking a few tips from previous successes is a great way to formulate your own.

Combining different brand strategy examples, using one at a time, or even just picking and choosing different parts of each one to make something that works for your specific brand can all be great methods of creating a custom brand strategy.

If you want to learn about a few successful brand strategies that you can pull ideas from, keep reading!

1. Dennys' Social Media Absurdity

This might be a strange one, but while social media has been a hot topic for all brand engagement experts, America's diner did it in a way that left some people bewildered and confused.

Dennys' Twitter and Tumblr (the latter is less popular now) accounts are downright whacky.

While all brands have their own methods of navigating social media, very few of them touch on the core of a late millennial and Gen Z audience. These things that are tweeted are sharable because they're so strange and appeal to the absurdist humor present in this age group.

These posts get shared because they're amusing, not because they're selling something. The audience wants to engage with the brand in hopes that their jokes get reposted.

It takes a special creative marketer to do this work. It can't try too hard, or it won't be successful. Touching on this specific type of internet humor can be a great leg up if other people in your niche aren't doing it.

2. Coca Cola's "Share A Coke" Campaign

Have you ever found a bottle of Coke with your name printed on the side and gotten a little bit excited? You wanted to buy it, right? Maybe you saw one with "mom" or "dad" or the name of your best friend and picked it up to give to them.

That's by design.

This is a great way to make your customer base feel seen and give them something that they can engage and have fun with.

Coca Cola gave their customers a tangible object that they could purchase and then share with social media. The technique is sales-y, clearly, but in a way that still gave customers something that they wanted.

How can you provide a personalized good or service to your customers that would be sharable and fun?

3. Taco Bell's Millennial Engagement Through Transparency

Taco Bell knows what it is. Similar to Dennys, it isn't fancy. It knows that it's cheap, typically "drunk food", and about as far away from the "real thing" as you can get while still being in the same general flavor profile.

They've done everything right as a brand, though, from their funny and sharable sauce packets to their fun social media presence and even some "real life" events.

Taco Bell doesn't pretend to be anything it's not, and in a social media age, that's important. Young audiences value transparency and are quick to turn on a company that is clearly doing phony work.

Advocating for a social cause that clearly goes against the actions of your brand? Don't try it. Pretending to be all about health and wellness while not selling a single healthy menu item? It won't get past the millennial or Gen Z eye.

They've allowed the "cheap" to become cool with everything from Taco Bell parties to Taco Bell weddings. They reach out to influencers who follow their general brand ethos (authentic, affordable, low-maintenance) to widen their scope.

Taco Bell's consumers know they're being sold to. The Bell doesn't try to hide it through phony marketing or niceties. They put themselves out there on all of their social platforms and have reaped the benefits.

4. Bringing Art to the People with KFB Law

Law firms can be a hard sell to the average person. You don't really notice them until you really need one, so making them stand out from the crowd is crucial.

How can you make that happen and engage an otherwise uninterested crowd?

Well, law isn't especially exciting (unless you're a lawyer), but art and design are incredibly engaging, especially for a younger crowd.

Making large and unavoidable art displays that show what the brand's intentions are is a great way of grabbing consumer attention, but hosting a gallery of local art is a great way to actually engage the local audience. Even better, the gallery benefits the Make a Wish Foundation rather than the company itself.

This shows a brand's concern with the local community (something that's important for a law firm) and also gives consumers something to do (via creating) and something to share (when they visit the gallery and take photos).

This gets the community involved in the service and alerts them to the existence of your brand!

5. More Broad: Sharing User-Generated Content

This is a strategy used by plenty of younger brands, and it's one that you should also employ. There's no one right way to do it, and it's impossible to pick one specific brand that's doing it the best.

Your audience is already using your product. If they're posting about you and tagging or hashtagging you, don't you want the world to know how much they appreciate your work?

Sharing their content does two things.

  1. It's free advertising
  2. It shows other people that "real people" love what you do. It's authentic (remember what we said about authenticity?)

Many brands choose to share this content to their stories; some choose to share it to their feeds. It all depends on the personal aesthetics of the social media pages. Doing this helps your brand and gives exposure to the pages of the peoples sharing.

This has been successful for brands that span across all industries. From tattooers to clothing companies to restaurants, this works.

Do These Brand Strategy Examples Appeal to You?

Finding a strategy that works for your specific brand can be difficult. You don't necessarily want to mimic what someone else is doing, but looking to brand strategy examples from other successful companies can be useful.

Brand engagement is critical to the success of a business, but it can be tough getting customers to interact with your work.

If you're looking for brand strategy tips, or for a whole brand strategy overhaul, contact us. We want to work with you on a campaign that's right for your customer base.

8 Social Media Marketing Mistakes to Avoid for Small Businesses

Businesses, both big and small, need to have a social media presence. Most companies know that social media can play a crucial role in generating leads and building brand awareness.

However, many startups and small businesses struggle to grow consistently on social media. Often, this isn’t due to lack of effort but the common social media marketing mistakes they make.

Whether it’s missing the point of social networks or oversaturating your content, small business marketers sometimes miss the mark. Before starting to advertise your business, it’s best to learn these 8 social media mistakes you’ll want to avoid when marketing your small company to customers.

1. Creating Many Social Media Accounts

Signing up for too many social media platforms─ especially when starting out─ can be a recipe for disaster. For small businesses, it’s more effective and much easier to master just a few platforms before branching out to more.

If you rush to create a presence on every social media platform out there and start publishing incoherently on all of them, you get confused. Then, you may consider abandoning some of your platforms, making things worse. This kind of behavior does nothing but boost your mistrust level with your audience, which is never good for business.

2. Not Having a Social Media Marketing Strategy

In Benjamin Franklin’s words, “If you fail to plan, you’re planning to fail.” Businesses without a social media marketing plan often find it hard to provide useful content to their audiences.

Without a clear social media strategy, you’ll find it challenging to know what to post, when to post, and what your audience likes and wants. Communication with customers might start to feel disjointed and confusing. A good social media strategy includes providing useful and engaging content that inspires action.

3. Deleting Negative Comments

Do your business a favor and be transparent. One of the common social media marketing mistakes small businesses make is deleting negative feedback. You need to show your audiences that you’ve got nothing to hide to build trust in your company

It’s best not to delete any negative comments and instead respond appropriately and as soon as possible. Negative feedback online provides an opportunity for you to engage with the user who left the comment and turn everything positive. Be respectful to whoever makes a comment and address the issue head-on.

4. Failing to Create Brand Consistency

What’s so unique about your brand? Let it shine through all your content. If you care about building a powerful brand that lasts, you need to focus on the consistency of your brand.

Don’t confuse consistency with monotony—if you're going to repurpose your content make sure you do it appropriately.

You should switch up your content, test different formats, and maintain variety. All the while, your content should remain consistent with your tone of voice, brand mission, and general look and feel. Being consistent also includes keeping your promises.

5. Buying Followers

While all social media networks don’t allow users to buy followers, the urge to buy followers might become more if you don’t have the numbers. Although several thousand followers can be purchased for a few dollars, you don’t want to go that route. Instagram and Facebook algorithms hate this activity.

In the past few years, there were so many fake profiles selling followers that even official ads attracted fake likes. Due to this, platforms like Facebook was forced to deactivate more than 2 billion fake accounts. Also, remember your ultimate goal is getting conversions, not building a subscriber count.

6. Promoting Yourself Too Much

Social media is typically about socializing and communicating. Not many people like promotional content ─ most people hate being sold to. If you decide to spend most of your time promoting yourself, you could lose social media followers.

Since your business needs to sell, use promotion subtly. While it’s okay to post promotional material now and then, the more engaging your posts are, the more sales you’ll attract. Don’t forget to set aside some of your time to interact with other people’s content, add value, and not just push yours down every follower’s throat.

7. Not Connecting and Networking

If you have many random followers who have little to contribute and don’t embody your ideal audience you will not yield the expected results. You want to draw in and engage potential customers, professionals, and peers with similar views and interests. These are the kind of people who will likely contribute to the success of your marketing efforts.

Make sure that your interactions are meaningful. That’s the true meaning of networking ─ adding value to relationships. Always find time to engage in discussions and send personalized messages.

By doing this, more people will likely pay attention to the things you say.

8. Following Every Trend

It’s not that you shouldn’t publish a buzzworthy post, but there’s a specific time and place to be trendy. If you’re a tech company, for example, posting about the latest baking style and over-capitalizing on movements to appear “youthful” can confuse your audience.

Jumping on social media trends and posting irrelevant content is perceived as a gimmick.  It plants you in a sea of other people who jump on the bandwagon. By blindly doing what every other business out there is doing, you’re devaluing your unique voice and pushing away prospects who followed you for your individuality.

Trends are still useful in social media. But first, know what everyone is talking about and decide whether or not it’s relevant for your small business. If the trend seems to benefit your business, use thoughtful ways to join the conversation.

Be Sure to Avoid These Social Media Marketing Mistakes

Because billions of people use social media each day, social media marketing remains one of the best ways to expose your company to a large audience. However, only a few small businesses do well when it comes to using social media in the right way.

As you can tell from the list above, all of these social media marketing mistakes can be avoided. All it takes is understanding your mistakes so you can handle them.

For assistance with mapping out an effective social media strategy for your brand, feel free to contact us today.

man drawing bar graph on window

The Top 5 Best Internet Marketing Strategy Tips for Your Business in 2020

81% of consumers search online before making a purchase. Without an internet marketing strategy, it's likely you're missing out on customers.

The internet provides many opportunities for you to promote your business to potential customers. With a strong internet marketing strategy, you can boost your brand, find new customers, and grow!

Here are the top five marketing strategy tips you need for success.

With these tips, you can make the most of internet marketing in 2020. Don't let your competitors snatch up customers. Instead, get started with these five tips!

1. Give Your Site Some Love

When people search for new products, services, or brands, they start online. If you don't have an updated, well-designed website, you're already losing customers.

Your website sometimes makes your company's first impression with customers. Make the most of that opportunity! By creating an eye-catching, compelling website, you can convert those visitors into leads or sales.

First, consider updating your website using user experience (UX) design trends.

UX design will clean up your website so it's easier to use and navigate. For example, you'll want to make sure your site loads quickly. You can use Google's PageSpeed Insights to determine what's slowing your site.

Then, remove clutter and unnecessary information. Add white space to give your remaining content room to breathe. White space will make it easier for people to read your content without feeling exhausted.

Does "HTTPS" appear in front of your domain name? If not, consider looking into a security certificate.

Hackers are getting smarter. By prioritizing security, you're showing customers you can protect their personal information. This is especially important if you're selling products online.

Next, make sure your site is easy to navigate. Can customers find what they're looking for easily and quickly?

Updating your site will help you make the most of these remaining four marketing strategy tips.

2. Step Up Your SEO

Search engine optimization, or SEO, makes it easier for people to find your website on search engines like Google. Without SEO, your content won't appear on the first page of a Google search. Not many people look beyond that first page.

A higher ranking will also make your brand look more credible. People will trust your brand over a competitor's based on your higher ranking.

Ranking at the top of the page will help you reach more people, too. As brand awareness grows, you can become a more recognizable resource in your industry.

Here are a few SEO trends you'll need for successful internet marketing in 2020.

User Intent

What are your customers searching for? What information are they hoping to find based on their search? Before you can use SEO, you need to know who your customers are and what they need.

Separate your customers into buyer personas based on age, gender, buying behavior, and interests. Then, look into what keywords they're searching with using Google Trends, Keyword Planner, and Ahrefs.

Once you understand their search intent, you can create content that reflects their needs.

Zero-Click Search

Google now displays snippets at the top of their search pages. These snippets display website content in ways that are easy to consume. With snippets, people no longer have to click on a website to find the information they need.

Structure your content for these snippets to increase your SEO ranking.

Look at the content that appears in a snippet for a keyword you're targeting. Then, adjust your content to fit that snippet. For example, you can use lists and bullet points or summarize your post in the top paragraph as a place to start.

Voice Search

By this year, voice searches will account for 50% of all searches. Over 35.6 million Americans already own a voice-activated device. Instead of typing out their queries, more people are asking Siri, Google, and Alexa for help.

In order to optimize for voice searches, you need to know who your customers are and how they're searching online.

Look at your keyword research. Then, phrase your keywords the same way your target audience does.

Make Sure You're Mobile

Google's search algorithm prioritizes websites that are convenient and easy-to-use for all consumers. Realizing more people are using their smartphones to conduct searches, Google rolled out mobile-first indexing in March 2018. Now, Google looks at the mobile version of your website to determine your ranking.

Make sure your website is optimized for smaller screens. Otherwise, people will struggle to read your content.

You should also make sure your site loads quickly, which could also impact your SEO ranking.

In order to optimize our website for mobile devices, consider some of the UX design tips mentioned above. Make sure it's easy for people to click on your forms and navigate your site.

Otherwise, you could end up missing out on potential conversions and leads.

3. Reel in More Reviews

Reviews are a great way to boost brand awareness, credibility, and your SEO ranking.

Ask happy customers to post their reviews on your Google My Business listing. Don't forget to add these reviews to your website. Happy reviews will help you attract more local customers to your business.

This social proof will help potential customers see the benefits of choosing your business.

4. Build Up Your Brand

Who are you? What sets you apart from your competitors? The answer to those questions should appear in your brand.

Focus on the unique value you offer customers. Show them that you're there to help solve their problems. Then, create a strong vision with that concept front and center.

Next, take a look at the visual components of your brand. Your color scheme, imagery, tone, voice, and font should help you stand out. If you look like your competitors, consumers will fail to differentiate you in the industry.

Make sure your brand appears cohesive across all marketing channels. A cohesive brand will help you build brand awareness and recognition.

Branding is essential to internet marketing in 2020. Otherwise, you'll look like everyone else in the industry.

5. Consider Your Content

Strong, unique content will fuel your SEO strategy and help you reach more customers.

You can create blogs, videos, infographics, quizzes; anything to get customers engaged. However, this content should focus on helping your customers.

Take a look at your keyword research. What questions are your customers asking? Create content that focuses on providing them with information and assistance.

Then, update your blog and social media with your content.

Pages with a video are 53 times more likely to rank on the first page of Google search results.

You can also great interactive content such as contests and quizzes to boost engagement. Don't forget to post your content on social media to expand our reach. With a strong content marketing strategy, you can build brand awareness, credibility, and trust with your consumers.

Make Your Mark: The Top Marketing Strategy Tips for Businesses in 2020

Ready to stand out from the crowd and make your mark? With these five marketing strategy tips, you can set your business up for success in 2020.

Don't wait to start marketing! Contact us today to get started.

dramatically lit photo of kangaroo

What's On Our Menu For New Biz? Outback Steakhouse

We're celebrating over here. And that's because we're starting 2020 off with an announcement like this: EraserFarm is delighted to share that Outback International has named us their creative partner for social content development.

We have the pleasure of working with another one of the great concepts inside of the Bloomin' Brands family, so we couldn't be happier that Outback International came calling as well.

Our work for them began late last year as we prepared new social ideas and content for their international franchise system.  Outback has a strong history in this market and across the US, so as the system continues to grow internationally they needed to ensure they had the right partner to grow along with them.

"We are excited to be working with the great team at EraserFarm.  We've seen great things inside of their work for one of our sister brands, and look forward to carrying that level of creative thinking over to Outback International," said Claudia Mezzarano, International Marketing Coordinator for Bloomin' Brands International.

We look forward to continuing to make our new friends proud and deliver work that drives positive sales growth and traffic for their international business.

promote your florida business

7 Ways to Promote Your Business with Social Media

If you’re a business owner, you’re in good company. According to the Small Business Administration (SBA) the state of Florida alone is home to 2.5 million small businesses. It’s also super friendly for startups, ranking as the number five state in the country for venture capital funding.

While these numbers are promising, they also mean that you’ll have to work harder to stand out in the crowd. Learning how to successfully promote your business is critical for your success.

Social media continues to be one of the best advertising options for startups. Start with these seven tips and you’ll be well on your way towards making a name for yourself online.

1. Humanize Your Brand

One of the most important things to remember when creating your social media presence is that people do not care about your company. Whether you’re a tech startup with a product that’s going to change the world or a stay-at-home mom selling homemade jam, the facts are still the same.

People don’t go on social media to learn about companies. They go there to engage with other people and to be entertained. Keep this in mind when creating your posting strategy.

Instead of focusing on facts and figures, or heavily promoting your products, make it a point to humanize your brand. This could mean anything from posting funny memes and cute animal videos to sharing behind-the-scenes videos and photos of your staff.

Each time you create a post, ask yourself if it’s doing anything to tap into the user’s emotions. If the answer is no, do yourself (and your followers) a favor and just skip it.

2. Hold a Contest or Giveaway

It’s no secret that people like free stuff. Holding contests or giveaways on your social media platforms is a great way to attract new followers and engage the ones you already have.

This could range from asking people to like or share a post to hosting an elaborate photo content where users can vote for their favorites. The latter is an excellent idea because it helps you build up user-generated content.

What is user-generated content, you ask? It’s basically anything that users post about your product or brand. This could include photos and videos, written testimonials, and more.

When your followers see other real people using your products and talking about how great they are, this helps to build up trust in your brand in a way that you simply can’t do yourself. It’s incredibly inexpensive (sometimes completely free!) and is also extremely effective.

3. Find Your Community

Creating groups on Facebook and LinkedIn is an excellent ways to engage your core followers on a whole new level. This fosters a deep sense of community. If you provide valuable insights and information as the leader of the group, it also gives you a chance to build up even more credibility.

You can also look for niche groups to join. This can help put you in front of the right people and give you the opportunity to create some strategic relationships that you otherwise might not have come across.

One word of warning, though. Make sure you go into these groups with the attitude of “givers gain.”

This means that you won’t blatantly promote yourself and your brand every chance you get. Instead, participate in conversations and offer advice and insight where appropriate without throwing in a sales pitch. Others in the group will appreciate this and will be more likely to refer you business when the time is right.

4. Engage with Your Followers

One mistake that businesses often make with social media is to “post and run.” You can’t expect success if you just drop a post and disappear for a week. Instead, you need to monitor your posts and engage with your followers.

This means responding to comments and answering private messages right away. Doing so will remind your followers that they’re working with an actual person instead of a faceless business. This is another critical element in building up that all-important trust.

5. Invest in Video

Video is definitely the way of the future, in social media and on almost every other platform. Any time you have the opportunity to lean towards the visual and away from the written word, do it.

It’s also important to note that you don’t need a major Hollywood production to take advantage of the video trend. Short, bite-sized videos of decent quality are perfectly fine for engaging your audience on social media.

6. Pay Attention to Analytics

Social media marketing does require time, effort, and money. So, it makes sense to ensure that you’re getting a decent return on your investment. Tracking your results on each platform with analytics software is critical for your success. Doing so will allow you to quickly see what’s working and what isn’t so you can make adjustments on the fly.

7. Go with the Pros

If you’re reading these tips and wondering how you’re possibly going to have time to implement them while still running your business, then you’re ready for one of the most important tips of all – go with the pros!

Social media algorithms are always changing, and it takes an expert to truly stay on top of all the ways to optimize your presence. Don’t make the mistake of leaving something this important up to chance. Find a great social media pro who can ensure you always put your best foot forward online.

Promote Your Business – The Right Way!

At Eraser Farm, we have all the tools and experience you need to promote your business the right way. From brand positioning and perfecting your user experience to integrated advertising campaigns and social media strategy, we’ve got you covered! Contact us today to discuss your goals and get started!