Questions From My Email Inbox: Paid Advertising Strategy

Yesterday Jennifer emailed me and asked how I promote my website outside of organic methods.  For those who might be unfamiliar, organic refers to traffic to your site that doesn’t cost money.  The organic tactics I use involve Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and good SEO practices.

Jennifer was interested to know if I pay to gain exposure for my page.  And the answer is yes.  I use 4 basic methods to drive traffic from the web to Dream Big: Google search, banner ads, Stumbleupon ads and Facebook ads.  This is a new strategy I implemented a few months back after doing extensive research and developing an organized advertising strategy.

I am utilizing the promote your page option in Facebook ads where I am encouraging people to like my Facebook page.  So far I average 40-50 new followers each month and the strategy for getting new followers is to target people who live in and around the Charlotte area who also show interest in multiple sclerosis, self-improvement, personal development, blogs, inspirational quotes, National MS Society, etc.  The targeting is important and no other platform allows for more specific targeting than does Facebook.  How you might ask?  Great question.

My company is a partner of Facebook as we do a ton of advertising with them each month.  When the general public describes Facebook they do so in terms of social media. But inside the walls of Facebook they think of themselves in terms of data curation; a fancy way of saying they collect data.  They know what kind of car you drive, where you like to eat, what you like to eat, where your kids go to school, what roads you travel, where you vacation, what web pages you visit most often, where you shop, etc.  The amount of information Facebook collects is insane.  Facebook’s success comes by leveraging that data to advertisers through laser-like targeting.

What this type of targeting allows is for me to advertise to those who might engage with my page more actively; we call this high conversion.   So instead of simply targeting anyone with a pulse, I am able to only target those specific types of people who will most likely be interested in my type of Facebook page and who will enjoy reading my posts.

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Then getting to those followers requires another step.  I’m not sure that most people are aware but Facebook limits your organic reach on business/fan pages to approximately 2% of your total followers.  For instance, if you have 1000 followers on your business/fan page and you generate a post, only 20 people are going to see that post.  In order to reach the remainder you must use the Boost button and pay FB.  Amazingly enough this is how they make FB profitable.

Google search has also been a productive tool.  You may not realize this, but Google does not view themselves as a search engine.  What??!!  That’s right, Google views themselves as a referral business.  They index pages based on specific search criteria to put relevant results in front of potential customers, readers, researchers, etc.  (With that said they still only index about 35 trillion webpages or 4% of the pages on the internet!)  Ultimately Google wants you to visit a business, have a great experience and then return to Google for another referral opportunity.   In short, Google helps websites and businesses generate leads.  And the primary way they help is to use paid Google search.

Interesting Factoid…

Seeing is believing!  Google is the primary method of browsing the internet for most people (64% market share).  Do you know the #1 search site for millennials?  If you guessed YouTube you would be correct!

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Google search ad copy

What you do is register an account with Google and then go through the process of setting up a campaign on Google Adwords.  Now search is a pay-per-click product which means every time someone clicks on your ad Google charges you for generating that lead.  I set my campaign to deliver ads in the United States and Canada based on keywords like MS blog, multiple sclerosis blog, inspirational blogs, inspiring bloggers, dealing with MS symptoms blog, etc.  I want to reach people who are specifically looking to find blogs or bloggers who are writing about specific topics.  I don’t want to deliver my ad to people looking for blogs.  Why?  Because the search criteria is way too broad and I’ll get charged for those clicks and they probably will have a low conversion rate.  (conversion rate is the % chance of them becoming a reader of my page)

I am also using banner ads which display on websites which allow for AdChoices delivery.  AdChoices is the program Google uses to sell advertising on a variety of websites including all the WordPress blogs.  I am targeting other big websites whose readers might also enjoy and engage on my page.

Dream Big blog will inspire and challenge you!

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And then there is Stumbleupon which drives views but isn’t something I focus a lot of energy.  My weekly budget is minimal ($10-$20) and I don’t always run ads on this platform.  What I do like about Stumble is it has huge upside in that a post can go mini-viral driving huge views in a short period of time.  I’ve had posts get as much as 5,000 views in an afternoon!  The downside is these views have low conversion meaning not a lot of people follow my page and become engaged readers.  And for this reason I don’t use Stumble that much.

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Stumble ad set

Jennifer was also curious as to why I do all this advertising; which I view as a great inquiry.  The truth is that most blogs are followed by other bloggers and this is a great thing.  My mission, however, is to reach all types of people and I don’t want to be limited just to those who use WordPress.org or .com.  So for me to reach non-bloggers my website must be present in the places they live in the digital world.  Thus I advertise.

I know this is a lot to digest, but I thought it might be interesting to see behind the curtain of what I do on a daily basis.  There’s a little more to getting a lot of followers than just sitting back and waiting for growth to happen!

My motto: you can spend your whole life waiting or you can get busy doing.

Do you have a marketing strategy for your page?  If so, I’d love to read about.  Be sure to drop me a line in the comments or shoot me an email!  Have a great week folks!

Danny’s World: Getting It Done on Monday!


I love working in marketing!  I am sitting at Starbucks catching up on emails and scheduling appointments for the week.  This is my home away from home.

Danny’s World: Busy Day Today!

 

Danny's iphone 1754

Today I have a few appointments with clients ending with physical therapy on my shoulder early this evening.  For those of you who are not aware, I am in digital marketing with Gatehouse Media, one of the world’s largest daily media groups.  As for my shoulder, I injured it a couple of years ago and now am going through PT to avoid surgery.   It hurts but most of my problems stem from inflexibility from not using my shoulder for a year.

Hopefully I’ll be back out on the links in no time!  Here’s to a great day!

A Few Random Thoughts

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It is just after 4:00 am and I am up early to get some things done for a few clients.  I do a lot of the creative ads for any campaigns I run digitally and my mind sometimes wakes me up with ideas.  So here I am; wide awake and typing when I might be better off sleeping.  Nonetheless here are a few of the things going on in my mind…

  1. I am currently working my way through all the season of The Big Bang Theory.  Currently I am in season 5 and so far it is hilarious.  I highly recommend it to anyone.
  2. Vacation for Evelina and I begins in 6 days!  I need this trip to recharge a little and Naples, Florida is just what the doctor ordered!
  3. I had a huge client sign with my company yesterday.  My coworker and I have worked on this for nearly a month and we got the word yesterday that they signed with us for all of their digital advertising.  When I close deals like this it is so completely satisfying.
  4. I haven’t been as active lately in my reading of other blogs, but that is going to change.  I need to refocus my energies and come up with a better plan.  Last time I looked there are approximately 6,700 blogger who follow my page, which makes it nearly impossible to get to every single follower.  I’m not exactly sure what I’m going to do if I’m being honest.
  5. I went to the hospital yesterday evening and had an MRI on my shoulder.  In October 2015 I had a little stumble on the staircase and the pain in my shoulder has gotten progressively worse ever since.  The specialist thinks I either have a torn bicep muscle or a torn rotator cuff.  Either way surgery appears imminent which doesn’t please me, but I’ll be happy to have a functioning shoulder again.
  6. In preparation for Naples I have been lying out in the sun for 20 minutes each day.  It seems that I have developed an allergy to the sun!  Each day my back, chest and legs develop hives from the exposure so I think it best I get a UV shirt for my trip.

That’s all for now.  Hope everyone has a wonderful Friday!!

 

Of Paper and Books and Ink

I pulled this lovely post from the archives on Ann Cavitt Fisher!!

Ann Cavitt Fisher

In an age where everything is increasingly digital, why do we love paper so?

Florentine paper framing our room with a view. Florentine paper framing our room with a view. Photograph and digital imaging work, Ann Fisher.

It’s the delicate scrollwork of a printed design. The fragrance of a leather book. The way a thick sheet of paper folds under your hand, pushing back up at your fingers . . .

What do I bring home from Florence? Paper, gloves, and wine.

Florence is famous for two kinds of paper designs: the printed variety, inspired by traditional Renaissance patterns, and carta marmorizzala — handmade, marbled paper. Florentine paper history: travelers first brought marbled paper, “Turkish paper” or ebru (art of the clouds) to Florence in the 16th century, and it was not long before local artisans began producing it. Florence is now one of the few places in Europe still making hand-marbled paper. Giulio Giannini e Figlio, founded in 1856 and…

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Decisions, Decisions Part One

Always interesting reads on Being Lydia!

Being Lydia!

desisions1Decisions that affect your life can be difficult at the best of times; however, when you throw in a chronic illness of any kind, making them can take on a whole different meaning.

Decision No. One – Hubby and I have been going back and forth about selling our current townhouse and moving. Initially, we wanted a house for the following reasons:

  1. No neighbors above, below and/or beside you
  2. A bigger yard for Violet to run around in
  3. Monkey would be able to go outside without fear of being seen by the onsite managers and us potentially having to get her offsite.
  4. More room to store all of our “stuff”

The trade-offs for a house were the fact we would have to go further out to get something we liked and could afford, and we would have a lot of yard work to tend to.

The other problem with buying is…

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