7 Ways to Make Sure Your Facebook Ad Creative Guarantees Clicks

Ok you’ve done it.

You’ve convinced the owner, or upper management of your company that Facebook ads are going to bring in so much new business that they can buy a company yacht and sail around the world while the team operates its headquarters from the stern of the “Maid O’ Sails”.

Sounds magical, right?

Alright fine. I’m embellishing a bit.

But you gotta do what you gotta do to convince non-marketers of the incredible opportunity that Facebook ads gives businesses in all industries. The opportunity, or advantage, is especially high in medium-sized cities like Syracuse, NY or Cary, NC, due to low competition from local small businesses. 

You can really kill it right now if you are smart about targeting with your Facebook ads. But as businesses of all sizes catch on, that advantage is quickly diminishing. 

Now is the time to invest in Facebook Advertising if your company has not already. 

BUT, you need to make sure one thing is very clear: just buying Facebook ads isn’t the thing that will bring results. The creative–you know, pictures, videos and copy–is what will buy your company a unicorn office-yacht.

best facebook ads

 

Ok, I’m done with the yacht-thing. But you get my point (I hope).

In order for your Facebook ad campaigns to generate actual results while maintaining a positive ROI, you need to have a great mix of math and art.

In this article I’m going to focus on the art piece because that’s where most businesses fail and lose boat loads of money.

So let’s get started…

Understand specific problems of specific people—focus your Facebook Ad creative on solving that problem

This seems obvious, but don’t overlook its impact on every dollar you spend from here on out. 

If every letter you type, and every photo you take doesn’t have a direct relation to a very specific person, you are less likely to get the results you want.

So do your homework. 

Don’t just blanket your audience and say “we want to target 25-34 year old women in Chicago”. Chances are really slim that you will be able to produce creative that will engage all of the different types of women in that audience (There are 1,490,909 of them, we checked).

how to use facebook ad manager

Instead, build out very specific audiences by creating a persona:

“Ashley”

  • 27 year old women 
  • Lives in Buffalo Grove, IL
  • Likes gardening
  • Owns their home
  • Earns $75k
  • Single 

By building out a very specific audience persona like “Ashley”, you can now figure out how your company can solve her very specific problems.

If you do your research, you might find that people like Ashley often have trouble finding the time to garden in their busy schedules. 

If your product happens to be able to help her make gardening less time-consuming, you can produce creative that shows her exactly how you can solve that problem.

You can start by gathering a real life story from a current customer like Ashley.  Create some great copy like: “Join 367 other busy gardeners like Ashley who have grown beautiful gardens in just 7 minutes per day using this.”

Then you pair that with a very engaging, short video that shows exactly how your product can help someone like Ashley spend just 7-minutes per day to grow a beautiful flourishing garden.

Boom *mic drop*.

I know, easier said than done. But that’s why companies like you, hire companies like us. 

Boost or Promote posts to find the most engaging creative

PPE stands for Page Post Engagement BTW (calling all acronym police!)

Page Post Engagement Ads are great for building social proof and gaining awareness (and eventually, sales).

Basically: instead of paying for clicks, conversions or reach, you are paying for likes, comments, shares or views.  When you are running PPE Ads, you are trying to get people to love you.

But money will only get you there, you can’t buy love. 

how facebook ads can increase sales
Hey everyone, can I play?

Just like every single other type of advertising—creative is the variable.

So let’s talk about how to make sure you have the best possible creative before you go H.A.M. on your marketing budget.

First, you want to create a bunch of images to share on your Facebook page. Once you share them, boost each of them with $5-$20 for a day, maybe two.

If you already have a large Facebook community, boost them to your followers—if not, then promote them to a lookalike community or people that are interested in your industry.

Then watch to see which one gets the most likes, comments or shares. 

The 1 or 2 that are outliers and get good engagement, are the ones that you will convert into PPE Ads. 

When split testing Facebook ad creative, test no more than one variable at a time

Ok, so above we came up with one potential ad designed to target one specific persona (Ashley).  But how do you know this is the perfect presentation to get someone like Ashley to either engage or buy?

I’ll answer for you: you don’t.

And also, we don’t. In fact; no one knows because creative is subjective. 

This commercial makes absolutely no sense. And it boosted Cadbury’s sales by 9%

If making people love your videos and pictures on the first try was easy, then we would all be sharing videos like this on our iPhones and watching the greenbacks roll in.

Not quite that easy.

What we can do is split test (or A/B test) the creative to find out what the market thinks about our creative.

But be careful not to test too many variations, because Facebook’s Ad algorithm might not give a “diamond-in-the-rough” a chance.

Let me explain.

Ok so, inside Facebook Ads Manager we have campaigns, which include ad sets, which include ads:

facebook ads campaign structure

The “campaign” refers to the goals and budget of your campaign. The ad sets includes your audience and targeting parameters. And the ads are the creative.  

For the sake of this chat we’re having, we want to split test the ad creative. Plus Consumer Acquisition found that Images are responsible for 75-90% of ad performance–so stay with me.

Since we want to test the creative, we are looking at images/video, headlines, descriptions and ad copy.

If we were to test 3 different images/videos, 3 different headlines, 3 different descriptions and 3 different versions of ad copy, it would look something like the chart below.

split testing facebook ads
My head hurts.

Before I dive into the massive cluster f*** that this will present to you, it’s important to note something. 

Facebook’s Ad Algorithm needs to achieve about 50 events (based on your campaign goals) in about 7 days in order to give you accurate split test data. 

But this is for each ad.

This means that if you have 81 different ads (based on our chart above), each ad needs to get 50 events to collect the most accurate data.

**81 times…50…carry the…..THAT’S 4,050 EVENTS 🤯 

facebook ad testing
Breathe, just breathe.

Can you imagine the budget you would need to try to achieve that? Yea me either.

So instead, let’s just test one thing at a time. 

Here’s how you do it:

Since images are the most important factor in ad performance, we want to start there.  Keep it simple–get your creative team to design three ad images to test (or videos if you want awareness).

Then write the same copy across all ads and let it run for a week. 

how to a b test facebook ad creative

example of split test ad images by Minted.

After you get some data you can sink your teeth into, select the best performing image, and run another Facebook split test changing up the headlines instead.

Using this process you can trickle your budget into the best performing ad, before you go for the home run.  

Make separate ad creative for each specific persona you want to target 

My wife and I both like Crossfit, but she likes and follows different people than I do—so why would brands target us with the same exact content?

Seems like a no-brainer, but brands are getting overwhelmed and are just “checking the box” when it comes to creative content. 

Almost every brand has more than one type of person you are targeting.

A baby appliance brand could have the following potential customers:

  • New moms
  • New dads
  • Parents of new parents
  • Friends of new parents
  • Family members of new parents
  • Parents having a second or third child

Now, conventional strategy is to make ads that target all of these audiences at the same time in a general way, or to pick your most valuable audience and just target them.

But if your ready to really do some damage, we need to go deep on each audience and speak to them directly.

This is where the magic happens. 

facebook creative
Yes, like unicorn magic.

The problem most brands come across is figuring out how to make the creative for each audience efficiently.

They think it will be too expensive.

And it can be, but it doesn’t need to be.

Here is the most efficient content strategy we’ve ever used; and it works.

Hire influencers in each demographic to create the content for you and share it with their audience. 

The results are amazing:

  • You find great partners to help you do market and product research
  • You get brand awareness with potential customers 
  • You get great content to use in your ad campaigns
  • You can do this with hundreds of influencers at once
  • The cost is either only the cost of your product, or COGS + a small influencer fee

So if you commit and do this right, you should have plenty of targeted creative for each campaign you setup (one campaign for each audience to start).

Then, inside these campaigns, you can test 2-3 different ads to find the best performer.

But the best part is, you are finding the best performer across 6 different audiences, so you get 6x the growth you would have if you just ran one ad campaign to everyone.

Note: if you don’t have a large budget, start with just one audience. But DO NOT blanket the entire group. 

Use video for more eyeballs on your brand

So you want thousands of people to see you brand? Run video ads.

You want people to love your brand? Run great stories as video ads.

On Facebook, viewers spend on average 5x longer looking at your videos than an image. 

So, imagine they are scrolling through Facebook or Instagram and they stop to watch your video. In the first 2 seconds, one of two things will happen:

  1. They will lose interest because it’s not interesting enough to stop what they are searching for.
  2. You’ve made an impactful video that delivers something valuable, and they keep watching.

Obviously we all are aiming for #2, and if you understand how to make great content, you will get vastly better reach and engagement than a standard image.

Psychologist Daniel Berlyne, one of the most important figures in the 20th century study of curiosity identified a main form of human curiosity as epistemic.

This type of curiosity is described as a drive aimed “not only at obtaining access to information-bearing stimulation, capable of dispelling uncertainties of the moment, but also at acquiring knowledge”

So when someone is scrolling through their news feed on Facebook or Instagram and they see a video start playing, there is a high likelihood that they will give it a few seconds to evaluate if will make their life better.

This is an example of why we constantly advise people that creative is the single most important factor to successful marketing.

And that will never change unless the robots take over the human race and enslave us to clean their house.

Which I’m pretty sure is already happening because the most advanced robot in the world can’t even vacuum yet

how to successfully use facebook ad creative.jpg

…and I’m pretty sure Marie Kondo is secretly a robot.

marie kondo

So the moral of the story is that video is the best type of Facebook ad creative for awareness, reach and engagement. 

Use static images or graphics for engagement or clicks 

Now that I just got done explaining that video will turn your Facebook ads into unicorns (until the robots come), let’s talk about when static images might serve you better.

If you want people to click through to a landing page and video isn’t the best way to go. Remember when we talked about people stopping to watch your video if it’s interesting? 

Well, there is a definite a limit on how many times you can distract someone. 

Getting them to stop to watch your video AND click through to your website AND read your sales page or surf your products, well, it’s highly unlikely.

The key to being successful with Facebook ad creative, is to stay focused.

Facebook advertising made easy
I want them to watch my video, and like my post, and click on my ad, and sign up for my…squIRREL!”

So if your #1 goal is to get someone to click-through to your landing page, then make sure everything maps to that.  You want to impact them as quickly as you can, and limit the actions they have to take before clicking on that “Learn More” or “Buy Now” button. 

A viewer can make an initial decision in about 1/10th of a second which means if you distract them with anything else, your chances could start to go way down, or completely disappear.

It might sound like I’m contradicting myself from my explanation of why video works. But remember: they work in different ways for completely different goals.

In the general sense, video is best for top of funnel awareness when you are trying to impress or engage someone for the first time.

It’s great for telling a story.

Images are best if someone already knows you, and you are trying to get them to perform a specific action. 

Of course there are plenty of images will win you fans as well.

facebook advertising ideas
I literally stared at this image for 3 minutes.

Get a professional copywriter to write your Facebook ads

This is my last tip, and it is not a small one.

I believe that although pictures and video will grab someone’s attention, copy will seal the deal on their decision.

It’s the ending of the story started by a great video or image.

It’s where you can instruct the viewer on what they should do next.

Way too many times I see Facebook ads that just state what something is, and it frustrates me because it’s such a wasted opportunity.

facebook product ad example

If you post a picture of a blue pair of running shoes, then why would you put “Blue Track Runners” in the ad description? I’m pretty sure most people will know they are looking at blue track shoes.

Instead, tell the end of that story — “Run more miles with smiles in our new ultralight runners.”

David Olgivy once said, “The more you tell, the more you sell.”

Here is a good example of how Dollar Shave Club told a mini-story with minimal copy to get Gillette users curious as to why they are better:

engaging facebook ad creative

So apply this to you Facebook ads, even if you have one line of space; tell the best truthful story you can with that space.

Wrapping it up

Remember, anyone can click “Promote” on a Facebook ad, but the creative included in that ad is what makes magic.

Far too often brands runs Facebook ads, get poor results and chock it up that “Facebook ads don’t work for my business”. But one thing is for sure, Facebook ads work—there are thousands of case studies out there showing that they do. 

The ticket to getting amazing results from your Facebook ads lies in the creative. 

Follow these 7 steps to make sure that your Facebook ad creative gets the results it deserves.

  1. Make sure it so,few a problem
  2. Boost your posts to find the most engaging creative 
  3. Split-test only 1 creative variable at a time 
  4. Use separate creative for each audience you target
  5. Use video for more awareness and reach
  6. Use images for more engagement or clicks
  7. Spend more time on your copy

Don’t cut corners with your Facebook ad creative, it’s the equivalent of flushing money down the drain.

The New Primetime is 24/7

Remember nighttime TV in the 90’s? You know, Primetime.

Ellen and Drew Carey on Wednesday, Friends and Seinfeld on Thursday, and who could forget X-files on Sunday.

Many over the age of 30 remember sitting down at 8 pm every night, next to their family, watching a string of 2-4 prime time shows.

It was Primetime Baby. The television time slot that every network, producer, and advertiser loved because all eyes were glued to TV screens across America. It got the best TV shows. It had the best, most expensive commercials. It was like the golden era of television.

Primetime might have been coined during the television era, but the golden era of radio had the same consumer pull in its heyday.

primetime radio - making your brand stand out

Image Source: WMKY

During and after the Great Depression, Mom and dad would come home from work (or looking for work) and flick on the radio dial to listen to the 1 or 2 radio stations to get their news and maybe a little comedy hour.

Up until now, Primetime has been a fixture in the structure of our daily lives for almost a century, but that has all changed now.

How it all changed

Primetime is now a highly individualized time frame, segmented and spread throughout the day. None of us have the same “Primetime”, we are certainly not all watching the same shows and there are too many networks to even count anymore.

Besides the increased availability of on-demand content, there are a few driving factors that have helped to break up Primetime for consumers across the U.S. and beyond.

Changing work/life balance

As a society, we are working differently than we did two decades ago. More and more people are working remotely, which means they are often not on a strict 9-5 work schedule. They might wake up at 9 am and watch their favorite show on Netflix for an hour with coffee while catching up on Instagram and their favorite news blogs. Then they work from 10-3 before going to the gym and listening to some great podcasts. When they get back from the gym at 5, they eat “dinner”. After dinner, they squeeze in another 2-3 hours of work until 9. At 9 they jump on Twitch and play Fortnite with all their friends until about midnight.

Obviously, this sounds like it might be someone younger, but these days, you never know.

Side-Hustlers

The internet has given millions of people the opportunity to work on their passions outside of their “day job”. This means that a lot of people, millennials especially, are getting out of their “9-5” and working on their “7-11”. This group of people isn’t even watching TV in its traditional sense. They might catch a Hulu show once in a while but they are probably consuming content from blogs, social media, and podcasts in passing, or interspersed between moments while they are working.

making your brand stand out

No matter what your day looks like, it probably doesn’t have a “Primetime” that looks like your parents’ did.

With the democratization of information and entertainment across hundreds of platforms, your “Primetime” is just that–yours.

So Primetime as we knew it is dead. The control has shifted from the networks control, to the consumers, and things have gotten really interesting…

What does these mean for advertisers?

Well, it means their job is getting harder by the minute.

A century ago Advertising was easy—just put an ad in the newspaper and put up a billboard. 70 years ago they could throw in a live radio read. 50 years ago they could knock peoples socks off with a TV commercial, and people WANTED to watch it! 20 years ago banner ads across the new “internet” gave them yet another possible point of impact. Enter social media a decade ago and all hell broke loose…

Now in order to survive a brand has to do 1-of-2 things:

  1. offer something truly and utterly unique so that people have to find them
  2. be everywhere your customer is all at the same time

And both are extremely hard, so good luck 🤦🏻‍♂️

P.S. Read this to learn how to be everywhere at once.

How to Get Attention

A little under 20 years ago, advertising on the internet was easy.

You could run a Google Ad for the word “coffee” and it would cost you 5¢ a click.

By the way, you were the only one showing up, so you were going to get a 50%+ click through.

But times have changed…

You are now not only competing with 4,583 other brands and startups like yours, but you are fighting for consumers attention with every other business running ads, Netflix show, blog post, mobile app, video game and funny prank video.

texting

The internet is a massive, distracting place.

Scratch that, the entire world is a massive, distracting place.

Marketers have to be all-in if they hope to stand a chance to stay relevant.

It’s the hard truth.

They have to have an exceptional product, trustworthy advertising and fantastic customer service. 

Simply running Facebook ads or creating video content isn’t enough anymore—it has to be great.

You might be one of the lucky ones that are at the top because you built you brand before the ‘content boom’, or maybe you got a shot of adrenaline because you appeared on SharkTank or had a successful Kickstarter.

But unless you are fast, efficient and super creative, you will fade quickly.

How to fight distractions to get attention

Okay we’re going to get granular here, because that’s how we roll.

The first thing you need to understand is that consumers are going to fall into two buckets before they are truly attracted to you:

  1. They ARE NOT currently looking for what you are offering, thus you are trying to influence them
  2. They ARE currently looking for what you are offering, thus you are trying to convince them

But remember, before you can do either of these things, you have to first get in front of them.

linkedin

Image Source: Medium.com

After you achieve one of these two things, you have now won the attention game, which is huge in today’s world.

But it’s not either influencer or convince, you need to be able to do both at the same time.

Let me explain (By the way this is totally made up and hypothetical example).

On Monday, Susie, mom of 3 in Iowa, could be reading the latest article on PureWow.com.

While she is reading, she sees a (sponsored) post snuck in the midst of the said article, written by Rachel Hollis, an author and social media star that she loves.

The article is about Rachel’s favorite beauty products for the busy mom.

Susie clicks the article and reads through Rachel’s suggestions.

She really likes the ideas that Rachel has about contouring.

And she decides she wants to give “Product A” that Rachel is suggesting a try.

Hence, Influence.

On that same Monday, at the same exact time, Lindsay, a single woman in Brooklyn is sitting in her apartment thinking about the upcoming weekend.

She has a date with a cute girl from Queens on Friday, dinner with friends on Saturday, and brunch with her parents on Sunday.

She’s running low on bronzer, and she’s not super pumped about the one she has been using, so she decides to shop.

She hops on Pinterest and begins pinning all the looks and products she likes.

Then she goes to YouTube to watch a few product tutorials from brands and influencers.

Finally she goes to Google to price-shop the top three brands she finds.

She finds a great deal on Amazon for “Product A” and orders it with 2-day shipping.

amazon

Image Source: PC Mag

Hence, Convince.

If you sell Product A, you just won two new customers at the same time.

And here’s how you did it:

  • You negotiated a 1-year sponsorship deal with Rachel to create content about how much she loves your product
  • You collaborated with Purewow to do a sponsored posts with Rachel
  • You sent your products to 100 of the top YouTube makeup influencers, and began working with 40 of them to produce tutorials using your products
  • You found 40 bloggers with a large presence on Pinterest to partner with who write and post about your products
  • You setup Amazon FBA to distribute your products at a fair price with 2-day Prime shipping—so you automatically earn a higher level of awareness and trust than your competitors who are not on Amazon.

If one of these strategies was missing, you might have lost Susie or Lindsay as a customer.

If two or more of these strategies were missing, you might have lost both.

In order to truly thrive in today’s Wild West version of the internet, you really have to work backwards from your customers purchase, into a full omni-channel marketing approach.

It’s how the next generation of winners will win.

2019: A Huge Year for Manufacturing & Industrial Companies

2019, 2020 & 2021 are all going to be a really big years for anybody involved in this industry.

Whether you are a manufacturing company or industrial service provider, it’s an important time right now for sure.

This year we are seeing millennials move into management roles as the previous decision-makers in those companies age up and out.

And we’re going to continue to see that over the next few years.

This aging-up occurrence is particularly important this year because the millennial generation that grew up deep in the internet and social media are the ones that are now moving into these director and executive roles.

And when they’re making these decisions, understand that they’re doing it in a way that’s much different than the generation before—which will be a shock to the system for your business if you don’t understand it.

Times are a’changing

So the ways that you used to do business development—with trade shows, Word of Mouth, or just bid work—while still relevant, are giving way to decision-makers researching your company on the internet.

It’s also important that you know that they aren’t just looking for you specifically, they are looking for the best solution.

And if based on their view, you’re not the best solution, you’re in trouble.

Unless you are investing in what you look like to them across your website, Google and social media (like LinkedIn), then you might not appear to be the best solution. And you might never even know it, nor hear from them.

“When your online brand is not professional, you’re basically losing behind the scenes, and you will be completely blind to it.”

So when we talk about the people that are aging into these roles right now, we’re talking about people that are 35 to 45.

They are used to doing research and hiring in a different way than the generation previous.

They’re now using Google to look up solution providers, YouTube to learn how things are done and who is doing it, and they end up triple-checking other companies reputation in order to make their decisions.

But even this occurrence might not happen the way you think.

Image of the manufacturing inbound customer journey
Originally from McKinsey & company

In the early days of the internet, and even social media, the customer journey was pretty straight forward.

Manufacturers could advertise to a specific type of customer by sponsoring events and trade shows, then funnel customers down the pipeline until they needed them.

But now they are bouncing around like a pinball until they have an instantaneous need, or a brand/business shows that they have a clear advantage.

Graphic showing the circular customer journey when making purchasing decisions

The chart above is from a consumer study, but remember, at the end of the day, these decision-makers are consumers too.

They don’t magically turn off their human brain to make business decisions.

It works the same way as if they were personally looking for a car, or for a home insurance company.

Be everywhere. Be clear.

So now that you understand that your manufacturing business should not only “push” your brand and value-proposition out to your potential customers, but also prepare to “pull” them in and wow them or educate them when they land on your website or social media.

Notice the key sentence in #2 on the chart, “Consumers add or subtract brands as they evaluate what they want”.

This is were you can really win.

It’s easy to get in front of someone, just pay to advertise.

Any old marketer or agency can spend your money for you.

But to really deliver a message that influences them, that’s were you make that money back.

Image of the modern consumer decision making process
Originally from McKinsey & Company

So if you’re a manufacturer and you hope to get business from a large corporation, their decision will start with past experience or use word of mouth.

But then, they’re also much more likely to hop over to Google and do some research, look at your reviews, your case studies and videos about your work. 

These decision-makers are going to look at your website to see if they can trust you.

They will look at what other jobs or what are their clients you have, or have worked with. 

During their search, they are doing this with all of your competitors as well, in order to find the most valuable option.

Promoting your work has always been really important.

But now it’s more critical then ever to put that stuff out there because it needs to be discoverable on platforms like LinkedIn, YouTube or Google.

These decision makers are doing their research.

And if you don’t update your website, put your work out there with testimonials and the projects that you’re working on, then they’re going to think you’re old, dusty or dead.

How to Build A Winning LinkedIn Strategy

We’ve all been hearing the rah-rah about how LinkedIn has become such an amazing platform to build your brand. But many of you are wondering what are the first few steps to actually getting to that “amazingness“. So here we go, I’m going to talk about really real world strategies that you can use every day to help utilize LinkedIn for networking, Business Development, job opportunities.

The problem with a lot of LinkedIn strategies out is that they’re super comprehensive and they’re overwhelming. When we talk to clients at Good Monster or talk to friends or colleagues, a lot of times they’re like, “I don’t really know what to do or where to start on LinkedIn because there’s so many opportunities. Also one of the biggest things I get is “I don’t want to brag about myself…I feel weird putting stuff out there and bragging about myself because I don’t want people thinking Oh, I’m full of myself.”

That’s a very valid point and that’s something that if you’re on LinkedIn, you can see that there’s people that maybe just go a little bit too far in doing that. So there’s a fine line, but I’m going to give you some strategies that keep you from feeling like you’re going to brag about yourself, but it will still help brand yourself as an individual or as a company and it’s very reputable. It’s something you can do in less than an hour per day, really even every other day if you really are strapped for time.

linked in marketing

4 Steps to LinkedIn Engagement
It’s funny. That sounds sort of like an infomercial but in four easy steps you can do it in less than an hour and is super manageable. And if you can dedicate yourself to doing it starting today, and every single day, or at least every workday, you’ll be rockin’ in no time. But every single day dedicate a half hour to an hour to doing this and I guarantee you, you will get some results in building your network in just a month’s time period guaranteed.

Now a little disclaimer for sales people and Business Development people out there. I know you are chomping to use LinkedIn to generate sales, but you have to understand if you go into LinkedIn and try to sell sell sell you will be rejected. People will sniff you out and they will not respond…they just won’t.

It’s the same as if you go into a room or a go into a networking event, and go up to every single person in that event and you say “hey, will you buy my product? Hey, can I do a proposal for you? Hey, we got this great service. Check it out. Here’s a pitch deck.” If you do that in an event people are going to be like, “Get away from me.” Right?

So it’s the same with LinkedIn. They’ve done a really good job at making it an engaging platform and if you go in there and try to sell you’re going to get shut down. So with that being said here are the four steps. No matter who you are, if you’re an entrepreneur or a business owner or just a business executive or if you’re an employee. You’re looking for job opportunities. You’re looking to just spread your network. It’s good. No matter what your goals are.

Step 1: Make your profile look and read like you’re a friendly human-being
First step is to make sure you look like a competent and friendly human being in your profile. You can Google all the tricks and tips to make your profile attractive, but the easiest thing to do is when you’re building out your profile put a picture in there that makes you look nice and engaging and friendly.

When you’re filling out your description do it from your personal viewpoint, like if you were telling somebody else who you are. Don’t write it in a third person point of view. It makes you look cocky. Do it from a first-person point of view.

Hi, I’m John. This is what I do. This is what I’m interested in. I’d love to chat about this, this and this. If I can help you in any way provide you value please direct message me, I’d be happy to help.

It’s authentic. It’s inviting. Write your description and your bio in an authentic way. Also when you’re putting in your current title right under your name, put right in there what you want somebody to know when the first two seconds because they’re going to see your name and your title more than they see on the rest of your profile.

So make sure that says exactly what you want. For instance my profile for a while said CEO of Good Monster, co-founder of Jaxon Jovie.

People didn’t know what Good Monster was and didn’t know what Jaxon Jovie was. So recently I’ve changed that to CEO of Good Monster and then the description of what Good Monster is so they know exactly what they’re getting into when they click on my profile.

Finally, add in some media that people can view, read or watch. LinkedIn allows you to add some media right in your bio some put in some YouTube videos, pitch decks or infographics to allow them to get a brief look at what you’re all about.

So other than that fill in your previous job history and education everything just fill that out like you normally would but those first things I mentioned are really important to get an authentic portrayal what you’re looking to do on LinkedIn and who you.

Step 2: Engage with 20 people in 10 minutes
Okay. Here’s where we get into how you can spend less than one hour per day really making good use of LinkedIn and building your network. So the first thing is go find 20 posts in your newsfeed or go follow some people that you want to engage with and comment under those posts with the really engaging helpful valuable comments.

So don’t just leave a comment that uses LinkedIn’s suggestions of “Congrats!” or “Good job!”, people will see right through that shit.. So go in there and leave a really authentic comment or answer their question.

If it’s a question give them a resource if they’re asking for help. Say congratulations if they’ve done something great, but say it in an authentic way.

Congratulations. That’s so awesome. You did X Y & Z so proud of you. I don’t know you but wow, it looks like you’re doing great things. Excited to watch your progress!

It doesn’t take much time or effort to leave an authentic comment on 20 posts per day.

It sounds daunting, but it really doesn’t take that much time. If you just answer it or comment just like you seeing that person face-to-face right this moment, you’re golden.

Step 3: Post twice per day
Ok don’t freak out. But I want you to post on LinkedIn twice per day. This is the part where a lot of people get hung up because they’re like, “I don’t know what to post. Do I share my personal information? Do I share what my company’s doing?”

I’ll tell you what I suggest you’re going to want to post.

First, think of five questions that you have for people out in your industry or other Industries or even colleagues and other professionals that are in the same job as you are.

For instance, Good Monster is looking for a behavioral tests that we can give to sales people that we’re bringing into our business development roles just measure to see if they’re a good fit for a sales position.

So I’m looking for that behavioral tests and there’s tons of them out there. I’ve looked at a few I’m just haven’t found the right one. So I posted it on LinkedIn.

“Hey, here’s what I’m looking for. Does anybody know of a good resource” and people are generally willing to help.

Another strategy of things to post is anything with gratitude.

Now, I’ve said this before. But the types of content that does the best on LinkedIn in terms of Engagement are pieces of content where people show gratitude for things that they’ve accomplished or places that they’ve gotten to in their career with the help of other people. So if you’re in a meeting that you’re okay with sharing, take a picture of the people in that meeting and post how proud, thankful, grateful or happy your are to know those people..

something like, “it was great to have coffee with Frank, a long time friend of mine. And now we’re actually doing business together. I’m excited for the next year to see what we can do together.”

Another one might be a new client that you just signed as long as they’re okay with you publicizing it show shaking hands or signing on the dotted line or even just be sharing a cup of coffee with somebody. Take a picture and post it and say we’re super excited to announce that Company XYZ is now a client of ours. We’ve got some great things planned ahead. So grateful that they put their trust in us and our team—really excited.

Those are just two examples of gratitude, and with gratitude you’re never going to seem like you’re bragging. So post twice a day it with at least those two strategies and you’ll start to brand yourself and your content will start to get into people’s feeds.

Step 4: Direct Message to Learn, Not to Sell
So the last strategy that you can use isn’t a necessity and if you’re strapped for time you don’t have to use this one, but it’s a good strategy, especially if you’re looking to really engage your network.

Use direct messaging to learn from people. So first find people that you want to learn from and that you think are top in your industry or people in other industries that you maybe think that you could network with on a totally a personal level. Don’t go in there trying to sell them on something and don’t go in there trying to ask them for contacts or any of that. Go in and leave an authentic message of why or how you became connected with them and then ask them if you can ask them some specific questions that you think they would be an expert on.

I can use the example that I reached out to a gentleman the other day in a totally unrelated industry and it had nothing to do with my business. I purely found something that I was interested in that is his profession that I wanted to ask questions. I asked him questions to learn more about what he did that some people in my network could benefit from. So I went into direct message and I left a little background of how I found him. And I said, I’d love to jump on the phone to learn a little bit more about what you do. Maybe I can help. He’s like cool. Let’s set up a time jumped on the phone with him for probably about a half hour learned a lot about what he’s doing. It was a great chat. that is a good way to use direct message.

And remember, if you are a business development, sales or marketing person, don’t try to sell anything…you will fail.

If that’s your the way you’re going to use direct messaging I wouldn’t even use it because it’s really not going to work unless you’re pumping out 10,000 messages every day (which LinkedIn won’t let you do anyways) and you’re just purely trying to get the law of numbers to work in your favor.

If you’re going to use the DM strategy, go in try to provide value to people if you want to learn from them, make sure they know the questions and it’s a good way to slowly build your network. You never know when they might need you in the future. And you never know when you might need them in the future. But right now you’re stacking the building blocks to growing that network.

And you guys know, the bigger your network is the more effective it’s going to be and the more authentic and more trustworthy you’re going to be within that Network.

How Businesses Can Increase Sales with Local Social Media Influencers

How Effective is Influencer Marketing?

Heard of the “Cristiano Ronaldo-Nike Partnership”? If YES, then I am sure you know what marketing via an influencer can do. Although this collaboration is at the international level, it should not stop you from landing huge sales via a local or micro influencer(s) if you play your cards right. Well, not everyone is a soccer fan. Besides, some may have no idea of what collaboration between an iconic footballer and a brand has in common or the benefits of this are. Thus, the need for a complete breakdown of what influencer marketing is all about is essential.

Let’s Back Up: What is Influencer Marketing?

The use of a popular figure (with a lot of followers) to impact your product or service positively is called Influencer Marketing. In other words, it is a union fashioned to bring about more awareness and sales. The newly forged partnership allows the influencer to promote your brand or service via the current and most effective method of marketing – online marketing. There are two types of influencers – Local Influencer and International Influencer. Your choice is dependent on your financial or production capacity and targeted area.

Our focus today is on local influencers and how they can perfectly bring about amazing traffic and a high level of sales. After negotiating a successful collaboration, your local influencer is expected to take it upon him or herself to promote your products or service via their social media outlets or videos and sticky blog posts. In other words, they make use of the latest way to accumulate huge income in shorter periods of time. Interestingly, we’re not here to tell you about the expected result of any form of influencer marketing but here to show you how the process works to increase sales!

How to Fully Maximize Influencer Marketing

1. Make Your Influencer the Face of Your Events or Loyalty Programs
Saying YES to the use of a local influencer during major events or contests can go a long way in doubling your sales. Let’s say you have a salsa night or hot chili eating contests once a month. Let that newfound relationship bring in the traffic you want on those special nights. Irrespective of your type of local influencer, an increase in traffic is guaranteed.

2. Implement Influencer-Specific Discount
If you keep selling with no way of appreciating your consumers, your business has a very high probability of failing or crashing in no time. Sometimes, you need to surprise them, make them feel like they got a great deal this time because this helps you continue increasing sales on daily basis. People aren’t willing to pass up any chance of leveraging influencer-based discounts – they hate missing out. To make this an even better campaign would be to align this with your loyalty programs via special codes or extra golden points.

3. Responsive Content Creation
Irrespective of whoever is in charge of your content, it should be engaging and responsive. This content may be in the form of sponsored posts and are not meant to be lengthy. It should include hashtags, brand mentions, and ways you can achieve something new with your product or service. This is why you should go with an influencer in line with your mission and brand values. That way, you mesh easily (and it doesn’t seem forced).  Additionally, you can use this advantage to boost sales.

Bottom Line

Customer Loyalty Programs do not just grow your business; they keep growth moving regardless of its scale! This is because it targets customer retention in ways that are cheaper than other online marketing techniques. You need to growth hack your business these days. This means being efficient and thinking creatively with data. Truth be told, it is not something you should try but a program you MUST implement because it is COMPULSORY if you are want to sustain your business in this super crowded and noisy world.

Ready to launch your own Influencer Marketing campaign? Contact us to help!

6 Reasons Why CPG Companies need to include Amazon in their 2019 Marketing Strategies

Why Online Consumer Packaged Goods Need to Utilize Amazon in their Marketing Strategies

If by now, you’re still in the league of people saying NO to Amazon or still think you need enough time to ponder on why you should choose Amazon as your next sales tool then, this post is for you! Believe me, when I tell you that the saying “if you can’t beat them, you join them” is no fluke and with that being the major statement Amazon has been sending across all over the globe, I think consumer packaged goods brands (CPG) need to rethink their choice of marketing platform. Can CPG companies survive without Amazon? Of course! Opting for Amazon is an option but with where things are headed, consumer packaged products will have no choice someday if they want to erase their weak survival. Aside from a promising future prospect, other reasons why CPG companies should make Amazon their choice of e-commerce platform includes:

  1. Audience Size

This remains Amazon’s major selling point and come to think of it, no other marketing platform can be compared to Amazon in terms of audience size. If it were only a function of size, it wouldn’t mean much but aside being huge, these customers are totally addressable and amidst them resides a pool of already established sellers. About a year ago, Erik Fairleigh; an Amazon spokesman disclosed the fact that Amazon had more than 200 million sellers and made global sales of over 200 billion. Worthy of note is the fact that most sales were made by individual sellers who made Amazon their choice of marketing platform. I’m sure by now you know what you’ve missed. Do you want to miss it again?

  1. Own Ad Products

In contrast to other standalone e-commerce platforms, Amazon’s algorithm allows for unsolicited referrals. The last time you were on Amazon, I know you saw a list of recommended products and you checked it out. Now imagine over 100 people checking out the same thing in a matter of microseconds, how many consumers do you think will purchase via this recommended page? Never forget the fact that their new interest may not be the chief purpose of visiting the marketing platform but the redirected consumers may change your brand’s potential for good!

  1. Better Fulfilment

Heard of Amazon FBA as part of an Amazon marketing strategy? If YES, then you know by now this is one of the sweetest marketing features you can get on any e-commerce platform. Amazon FBA is a feature that makes sellers do less while earning their normal profits. With Amazon FBA, selling online is where your work ends! Amazon takes full responsibility for packaging the product and delivery. If any issue should ensue, its customer service handles it for you. What more can you ask for?

  1. Unique Customer Service

Like I mentioned in point 3, the back end customer support Amazon offers is second to none. It is this stellar department designed to prevent, solve and make customers delighted. I would say that this is the backbone of their business and why users trust them so much. With over 16 supported languages from 130 locations all around the world, I dare you to tell me which other customer services can boast of this level of uniqueness.

  1. CPG Value

If you think a trademark like Nike doesn’t understand what it is doing by merging with Amazon, then, I think it is high time you start guessing right! With reviews showing an estimated 59% increase based on direct sales between 2016-2017, consumer packaged goods have become assets of inestimable value. If you form an alliance now, a jaw dropping result is guaranteed!

  1. King of E-commerce

Amazon doesn’t just own 49% of total e-commerce, it is accountable for more than half of online marketing transactions. Thus, it is a moving train you want to be a part of, no doubt!

Team-Up + Wrap-Up

Don’t take my word for it, do your homework and find out more reasons why Amazon remains your best bet when it comes to CPG sales and marketing. We at Good Monster know that this can be a daunting task. Finding a company to partner with that understands your brand and that can effectively help you get started on this journey is the toughest part. It is important to have a dedicated team in-house or out-of-house to take this task on. If this isn’t done correctly you can miss a lot of the small nuances involved and bottleneck your productivity on the Amazon platform. If you need some more information on beginning steps, feel free to reach out and we will set you on a profitable path.

On a parting note, I would like to say there is no bad time to make the right choice, however, the sooner the more cash flow.

Why CPA’s Can’t Afford to Ignore SEO

You’ve probably heard a lot of talk about search engine optimization (SEO). Other companies are doing it but why should an accounting firm care about it? We know that SEO is a fancy term for strategies that help search engines like Google find your website and other online content. With so much competition across the web nowadays, accounting firms without optimized websites risk not being found by potential clients. Costing you potential business.

SEO & Online Visibility: Don’t Get Left Behind

A recent study by CPA2Biz found that accounting and finance firms who are utilizing online marketing found that 75% of accounting firms already generate some new business leads online. Additionally, they found that 71% of all firms are planning to increase their online marketing budget next year.

The study also found that high-growth firms or firms growing five times faster than the average, are generating twice as many online leads as average firms. So what strategy did these firms say was the most effective in terms of their online marketing efforts?

You guessed it, SEO.

Why is SEO so Important to Attracting Clients?

More and more people looking for accounting services are turning to the internet to research and find prospective firms. Another study by CPA2Biz revealed that 81% of buyers of professional services go online to “check out” a firm’s website before buying a service. The study also found that 63% of potential clients perform a search in a search engine on the firm to see what turns up, whether it’s reviews, evaluations, court reports and more.

Firms that are not easily found online are quickly becoming invisible.

It’s important to note that accounting clients also search for specific topics online: accounting issues they’re dealing with, help with interpreting new regulations or trying to solve business problems. Firms that are using SEO to optimize their content whether it be whitepapers or blog posts will be the ones clients get their answers from.

So you see the value in SEO, but what are some other things you should know?

Website Optimization and Online Authority

SEO practices, in short, usually fall into two categories: optimizing your website and building online authority. To really succeed in SEO, you will need to focus on both.

  • Website Optimization: Make sure your site is responsive, meaning it looks great no matter what device you are on as well as looking at the technical “back end” of your site. It’s worth running a site audit to make sure you’re following best practices.
  • Online Authority: Activities that ensure the rest of the online community knows about your website and other content can also help boost your SEO value. The more online relationships you build across the web the better.

Google Rewards Quality

Google, which dominates the search landscape, is always changing and updating its algorithms to provide users with the most accurate and high quality results to what they’re searching for. Knowing this, it’s important to focus on quality rather than quantity. Accountants who pride themselves on offering quality solutions to their clients are in great shape to capitalize if you take the same approach when creating your website and other online content.

Duplicate Content is a No No

Google, like real people, likes original content. If your firm is subscribing to a service that provides content to your site, it really won’t help you. You could actually be penalized for it. Instead of simply publishing a news bulletin about a new tax law, try to put your own spin on it by adding your opinion or writing about how it might affect your clients.

Google’s emphasis on quality content that is relevant goes great with offline marketing tactics that accounting firms have used for years. For those firms with a great brand and strong messaging, using SEO to drive more qualified leads to your site will yield great results.

Ready to start an SEO partnership that delivers real results ?

Contact us today for a free consultation!

 

4 Major Local SEO Tips for Small Businesses

So you’re a new business, and we bet it’s been pretty tough gaining traction in your target market, right?

Especially if you’re facing competition from established brands in your area. You know, ones that have been around for a couple of years! Thankfully, all this can change with one simple approach.

Yep, that’s right.

Doesn’t matter whether you’re a law firm in San Diego, a restaurant in Miami, or a jewelry store in New York.

Having a solid search engine optimization (SEO) strategy will certainly level the playing field for you.

Going It the SEO Way

See, the beauty of local SEO is that it’s changed the realm of marketing and advertising as we know it.

No longer do you have to pay for expensive ads in your local listings just to get the word out that your business is up and running.

Or maybe hope to get your first client, who just so happens to be the chairperson of the neighborhood watch; and pray to God they put in a good word for you in the next members’ meeting!

Phew! Thank the heavens you don’t have to worry about all that!

All because of the internet of things. Specifically, the ingenuity of online advertising.

As the backbone of online marketing, SEO is THE MOST vital component when it comes to determining your site ranking on search engines like Google and Bing.

As a matter of fact, check this out….

According to Google Search statistics, Google records a whopping 40,000 searches every second, which then translates to 3.5 billion searches a day, and a mammoth 1.2 trillion annual searches worldwide!

So imagine what a first page, or even a second page ranking can do for your business…

You’ll be vacationing on that secluded Greek Isle, listening to Sade’s Sweetest Taboo in no time!

Sounds nice. But let’s snap back to reality for now….

A first page ranking might feel elusive at first. But with the right research, patience, and dedication, you might find yourself seeing a growth in organic traffic in time.

Keeping this in mind, here are 4 major SEO tips for local businesses that, when used correctly, will gradually increase your SEO ranking as well as online presence!

Optimizing your listings on Google

Hmm, optimizing your listings, does this sound remotely familiar? We bet it does because it’s one of the most vital factors for every website representing a business.

One thing you’ve got to understand is that Google automatically ranks your website the second it goes live, so that anyone searching for you will find you effortlessly.

And when they do, optimizing your listings- which is the process of including important information in your web pages regarding your business- is what will make it easier for them to locate you.

In fact, your website must have the following info to optimize your listings on Google:

  • The NAME of your business

  • The DESCRIPTION of your business. This could be content such as the mission, the vision, the goals, and objectives of your business.

  • The HOURS OF OPERATION. Are you a day, night, or 24/7 business? This can let a potential client know the right time to contact you.

  • The LOCATION. Where is your business located? Is it in Syracuse, Washington, or Miami? As Khabib Nurmagomedov would say, “Send me Location.”

  • The UPDATES. Have you made any major updates lately? Perhaps moved your main office, gotten a new executive hire, or even added some new products and services to your arsenal?

  • The REVIEWS. Honest reviews let your potential clients know that you’re an honest and trustworthy business.

  • The MENU. We can’t reiterate how important this is. Nearly every major business has a menu showcasing the different parts of its website that appears on a search. Everything from Products, Services, Contact Us, Blog, and so forth make for easier navigation.

Hold on, but what if I’m a local business planning to go national?

Well, if you’re local business planning to sprout your wings and soar the National way, then not only do you have to first optimize your local listings, but also invest a lot of time (and money) in OFFPAGE OPTIMZATION.

Hmm, but Good Monster, what is offpage optimization?

Well, let’s break it down for you. Offpage optimization refers to all the tactics applied by your business outside of its website to create multiple high- quality backlinks that will inevitably improve the position of its website’s search ranking.

Everything from backlinks, to anchor text, to domain popularity are facets of offpage optimization.

Many a national business prefer to hire a local SEO company to undertake their offpage optimization strategies.

If you’re a national/local e-commerce business, then Social Media Campaigns are the way to go

Ahh, e-commerce; the powerhouse that drives all online businesses. Unless of course you’re in the Blogosphere, which plays by its own set of rules and regulations.

For you to thrive in the world of e-commerce, you’ve got to have a strong social media presence. We’re talking the likes of Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, and just about every other famous social media platform out there.

But how do you get such a massive following?

By having a series of great social media campaigns that ‘hook and sink’ as many social media users as possible.

There are many ways in which you can get started with your social media campaign.

However, most national e-commerce companies prefer to hire the services of professional social media strategists to handle all matters pertaining to social media on their behalf.

Last but not least, for both local and national businesses, hello keywords!

No matter the size of your business, keyword optimization is one of the major components of your SEO strategy.

That’s because factors such as keyword value and keyword density are some of the elements that Google bots use to determine the significance of your web page.

Are your keywords worthy enough to merit a first page ranking for a particular query?

Over the years, keywords have evolved dramatically. So much so that strategies such as keyword stuffing are pretty much dead right now, unless you want to get penalized by Google.

So we did a bit of researching and figured out some nifty ways to increase your keyword value for your website. PSST! Don’t tell anyone, it’s a secret!

  • Placing a keyword in the description of your picture- The pictures that you have on your website are more than just objects of aesthetic value.

As a matter of did you know that Google actually shows the pictures of your website as part of your ranking?

So next time you have a caption or background picture text, make it a habit to include at least one keyword in there!

  • Keywords as part of your tags- Whether it’s your title tags, or your web page tags, include at least one or two keywords as part of them to improve your keywords value.

  • And of course, the proverbial keywords in the text- Yes, as part of the Google business spectrum, it’s a given that you’ll have to include some researched keywords in sections of your text. Remember, the higher the value and positioning of your keywords, the better your chances of ranking.

And voila folks! All good things must come to an end. But we do hope that you’ve internalized all we’ve mentioned in terms of building your brand in the realms of SEO.

Do you have any questions about SEO strategies and directives? Feel free to send us a comment or email here at Good Monster!

How To Take Risks When Starting A Business

Risks are part and parcel of daily life.

From the moment those prominent rays of sunlight usher themselves into your home and dictate a new morning, to the moment you lay your head on the pillow after a long industrious day; you’re always taking a risk.

In fact, nature has engineered us to be risk takers. Heck, even your marriage proposal was a risk. Because the flip side of the coin is…

They could have always said no

As adept as humans are at risk taking, we’ve become coy about it, especially if one is aspires to be an entrepreneur.

But why is this the case?

Laxity; modernity has instilled in us a fear of the unknown. No longer are we the valiant conquerors that once traversed foreign lands and explored the wilderness.

Not that we’re complaining or anything; because who’d rather be hunting a wild-boar instead of digging their teeth into a juicy burger delivered right at the door?

Exactly.

That being said, what kind of risks should you consider taking before starting your own business and how do you handle them? Here are a couple that you might need to face along the way.


Saying goodbye to that steady paycheck

Before you stamp the word ‘entrepreneur’ on your LinkedIn bio, you might have to say goodbye to your current employment position.

And this sucks.

Because most entrepreneurs rarely have a solid financial backup in case things go south. So once you venture into the realm of business, it’s safe to say that you’re on your own.

Plus there’s no guarantee that you’ll get a steady personal income once you kick start the business.

Bracing for tough times ahead?

Then it’s probably a good idea to be a bit more stringent with your spendingespecially for the first couple of months (or even years) of building your business.

Which then brings us to…


Saving an extra penny for the growth of the startup

Become a successful small business owner

Every Saturday evening, you always had a candlelit dinner at the Chateau le-something with the mister or missus.

And the tab always came to a whopping $400 per meal, right?

But ever since you aspired to leave the confines of your 9 to 5 to become a small business owner, the money has gotten tighter.

In fact, you’ve even had to dip into your savings just to finance some of the projects that run your business.

Especially if your crowd funding didn’t go so well. Or the recent grants/loans you took to start the business are currently overwhelming your financial structure.

All in all, prepare to cut out some of the luxury in your life to uplift the enterprise.


Sacrificing personal time to meet the company’s objectives

It takes time to build an empire. But if you’re passionate about it, you might find yourself working100 hours a week just to perfect your company’s business model and meet the stipulated deadlines you set.

This might mean missing out on some family time and sleepfor the benefit of improving your business acumen.


Acknowledging that you can’t do it alone

Even the savviest of entrepreneurs know that they can’t build a successful enterprise without the collective effort of their business partners, friends, and investors.

Everything from financial to emotional support is vital in keeping an entrepreneur focused.

So if you’re riding solo, perhaps it’s time to consider bringing in a sidekick to help you realize your vision and brand!

All in all, every successful entrepreneur understands that business and risk taking go hand in hand. And in the famous words of Roman Philosopher Lucius Annaeus Seneca:

“It’s not because things are difficult that we dare not venture. It’s because we dare not venture that they are difficult”