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What is Social Selling?

You may have heard that social media is the new frontier for building a business, but may not be able to picture how that could be. It’s true, and it’s called social selling. This is now where customer relationships, recognizable brands, and new customers are born.

 

What is social selling?

 

Social selling is not a one-time activity, and it should be used alongside existing sales methods. It can be difficult to get started, especially if you’re new to social media, but the benefits outweigh the challenges.

 

Linkedin’s research finds that 78% of social sellers outsell colleagues who don’t use social media. Jamie Shanks from Sales for Life found that for every $1 invested in social selling, the ROI is $5. Hubspot found that 74% of B2B buyers conduct more than half of their research online before making a purchase or contacting a salesperson. The data is clear that social selling is very relevant now.

 

“Social selling is leveraging your own professional brand and social network to gather insights and connections, then use those information to help you discover new opportunities, sell, and get business done.” -Linkedin’s definition of Social Selling

 

So how do you do it?

We suggests a few basic tips:

Begin by putting yourself where your ideal customers already are. Join online groups and be friendly and helpful to people. Buyers are less likely to find social selling creepy if they share connections with the salesperson, so get in the community.

Never use canned or pre-written scripts, speak to people individually, about their interests.

Stay aware of the culture of the platform you’re on. Would-be buyers find social selling on Facebook creepier than social selling on any other social network.

 

“Social selling is my ability to listen to your conversation, engage you on topics that are of interest to you and provide you with great content on that subject that will ultimately lead you to doing business with me.” -Marki Lemons Ryhal, an Award Winning Social Media Speaker

 

If you need help with your company’s online presence, content, website, or app, D-Kode tech would be happy to help you. Contact us today to see what next steps will bring you the results you seek.

 

What is Inbound Marketing?

Learning about a product used to happen in the store, office, or wherever a purchase would eventually happen. An employee of the company used to be the ultimate source of product info. Today finding out about products happens on yelp, youtube, through blogs, social media, or on product review and comparison websites. Today’s customers trust independent reviews more than a seller’s posted claims.

What is Inbound Marketing?

Inbound marketing is drawing the customer to you, buy earning their trust and demonstrating an understanding of their needs.

Hubspot, who coined the term “Inbound Sales”, says “Due to the proliferation of marketing materials on the internet, the modern buyer is no longer dependent on salespeople for necessary purchasing decision information. Inbound salespeople see the need to personalize the sales experience to the buyer’s context.”

“Marketers need to build digital relationships and reputation before closing a sale.” – Chris Brogan, CEO of Owner Media Group

Buyers now do their research about your product independently, and what they want from you has changed. They want to know you’re an expert, get your advice, including suggestions that might resolve their issue before they purchase a solution. They want to rule out the possibility that they don’t need your product, clarify what their problem really is, and gain confidence that your product or service will create the desired result for them specifically.

They want to trust you. They want to have experience with you. This is inbound marketing. Your blog, resources on your site, your social media postings and comment replies, these are where your customer begins their “buyer’s journey”, dipping their toe into the water of working with you.

In an Inbound Sales marketing plan, there are stages of the “buyer’s journey” and you can identify where your prospect is in their journey by their behavior.

Awareness Stage

They’re becoming aware of their problem or need for a solution. They utilize valuable content you’ve made available free to the public. The information offered is specifically of value to people that might make good customers for your business.

If you sell jewelry, this might be information on observing differences in types of gold.

Consideration Stage

As customers are getting closer to buying, they might need more specific and harder to find information. You offer it in exchange for their contact information and permission to contact them. Now you’ve shared valuable information and gained a way to contact someone considering products like yours.

Your jewelry store might email a printable template with ring sizes to scale on it, so your visitor can lay a ring that fits them on the page to see what size they’re wearing.

Decision Stage

Your visitor now knows they’ll be buying something to meet their needs, but they’re not sure what they’ll buy or from who. At this stage they need to know why buying from you can be best, what the differences are between comparable products, and other information that clarifies the next step.

A way to schedule a custom jewelry fitting would be an appropriate offer here.

 “Marketing = getting people to know, like and trust you.” – John Jantsch

Because your digital presence is ready to facilitate a buyer’s journey, your visitor will have found you to be useful, knowledgeable, and they’ll feel comfortable doing business with you. When your visitor contacts you and finds your company to have a a focus on being helpful, it continues building trust and makes your company an obvious choice to do business with.

For help creating your inbound marketing plan or creating a website with the buyer’s journey in mind, contact D-Kode Tech.

 

4 Digital Marketing Strategy Ideas You Can Use Today

marketing ideas you can use today, digital marketing tips

When building your marketing strategy for a business, it’s vital to know that the traditional techniques of print radio and TV advertising don’t work anymore. Modern media users filter out traditional forms of advertising about products or services trying to get them to buy. Digital marketing takes a different approach by offering clients something of value, allowing them to become organically interested in your product or service. A digital marketing specialist can help you coordinate an approach to online marketing that really brings new leads to your business. To start, follow these 4 pieces of advice:

Optimize Your Website

In today’s digital age where 81% of shoppers do online research before buying, every business must have a website. You might choose to use a professional website designer or create your own website. However, it’s critical to ensure that your website is optimized for both search engines and your customers. It should be useful and attractive, not one or the other. A professional web designer can include keywords in the on-site content and back end of your website ensuring your website shows higher on search results. They can also design your website to be more user friendly and intuitive to navigate, while including responsive design so your website works on mobile devices as well as desktops. Optimizing your website is a simple step you can take today to boost your business marketing strategy.

Start A Blog

An online blog attached to your business website is the ideal way to offer value and share your knowledge with your clients, helping them to engage with your business. Blogs stay fresh with new content added all the time. Blogs are also read and indexed by search engines, which provides an ongoing source of search engine optimization for your business. If you don’t have time to stay up to date with writing your own business blogs, the good news is that a digital marketing specialist can source original and engaging blog content for you. It’s one of the simplest actions to take, but starting a blog can really transform your business marketing.

Integrate Social Media

Are you using Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram or Linkedin for your business? If not, why not? People and businesses are looking for new products and services on social media every day, so if you’re not using social media sites, you’re missing out on a key source of good leads. Your digital marketing strategy can be integrated with social media, blogs, news and other content like images being automatically posted to your connected social media accounts. Talk to your digital marketing specialist about integrating social media and boosting website traffic and leads using these sites.

Build An Email List

A contact list and email marketing strategy is one of the most valuable assets to your business, and your email contact can deliver great value to your audience. Your website should be designed to take visitors through your engagement process, to collect contact information so you can continue to engage with them. Without effort, building an email marketing list can fall by the wayside and that opportunity for growth and lead building can get lost. A digital marketing specialist can help you stay engaged with growing your emailing your list, and keeping in touch with them to get more sales and better engagement from your clients.

 

Digital marketing doesn’t have to be complicated, and there are actions you can start taking today to boost your business online. Talk to a digital marketing specialist today to star your digital marketing journey and boost engagement and leads for your business.

What’s the Difference Between a Blog and a Website?

Before creating a blog or website, you’ll want to be able to define “blog” and “website” in your mind.

Both blogs and websites provide an online ‘location’ for your business or personal purposes, but they are not the same. Because our lives are increasingly lived online, it’s good to understand the uniqueness and value of different online landscapes. So if you’re wanting to start a personal site or a business site, which should you choose?

Define Blogs and Websites

“Website” is a more general term to refer to any “site” (place) on the “web” (interconnected system of locations) online. There are ‘dynamic sites’, which change regularly, and ‘static sites’ which generally stay the same.

A “blog” is a type of website that contains a series of posts and is added to regularly. The term was originally “web log”, and naturally shortened to blog with use. Writing the web-log entries became defined as blogging. So all blogs are websites, but not all websites are blogs.

You may have heard the term “vlog”, and that is a subset of blogs where posts are in video format. This evolved form the longer “video log”, but at its core it is a blog.

What’s the Difference?

There are a number of features that differentiate a blog from a website. Keep in mind that blogs are always dynamic, and even otherwise static websites can include a blog within their pages.

Blogs

  • Blogs Consist of a Series of Posts in Reverse Chronological Order – Blogs contains different, but usually related posts or articles, with the newest one listed first. If a website is only or mainly a blog, it usually displays 8-12 of the most recent blog posts on the main page. This helps readers immediately see the most recent news and updates.
  • Blogs Have A Commenting System – Blogs feature posts that usually (but not always) allow sections for readers to add their comments.
  • Blogs Can Be Subscribed To – If you subscribe to posts or updates, this is a blog or mailing list.
  • A Blog Uses Categories or Tags – Another way to distinguish a blog is that it uses categories or tags to ‘group’ and identify posts. You may be able to search or filter by the tags that appear at the beginning or end of a post.
  • Blogs can be stand-alone or part of a website with many pages.

Websites (that are not blogs)

  • A Website will have a static front page, and usually a few other static pages, such as an ‘About’ page or ‘Contact’ page.
  • Websites don’t allow comments. Social media networks do allow comments, but they are are special case.
  • Websites cannot be subscribed to.
  • Websites don’t display tags or categories for their pages, but other ‘tags’ and indexing tools are applied in the back end (in the guts) of the website.
  • A Website is found at an address like www.ABGDEFG.com, and then pages within that site are at addresses like www.ABCDEFG.com/whatever. So www.dkodetech.com/blog is a page within the dkodetech.com website.

Which is Better for Your Needs?

When it comes to choosing between a website and a blog, it really depends on your intentions for your site. Do you want a personal platform to keep people up to date with what you are doing – like an online diary? Then a blogging or creating a vlog is the right choice for you.

If you’re running a business, the best choice is actually the combination of a website and a blog.

The reason for the static website component is that it provides website visitors with the consistent and stable information they are used to. A conventional website can include all your website information, including vital business contact details.

Attaching a blog to your website has the added benefit of allowing clients to subscribe to regular news from your business. You can deepen your relationship and make your business useful to your customer base even before they become a customer.

A website attached blog also helps you stay up to date with search engine optimization. Blogs regularly add new keywords and fresh content to your site which is constantly indexed by search engines. This helps your web address to appear higher in the search results, so more customers will find your business when looking for local services.

If you’re looking for a professionally designed website that integrates an optimized blog, talk to D-Kode Tech or a local web designer about creating the right solution for you and your business.

Converting Visitors Into Customers: 5 Web Design Tips

Your website is not just a place to showcase your products and services or provide contact information. It’s also an opportunity for connecting with visitors and converting visitors into customers! 81% of shoppers conduct online research before deciding on what to buy. It’s when they’re browsing your website that you can connect with your clients and get them to choose you. An effectively designed website is essential for boosting conversion and here are five tips to make your website design more impactful.

Get Search Engine Optimization Up To Scratch

The first step in boosting website conversion is ensuring that your website has plenty of visitors. Most people use search engines such as Google to find relevant businesses and services that are near them. It’s essential that you implement search engine optimization to ensure that it’s easy for potential customers to find your business website. Search engine optimization uses keywords, links, and back-end adjustments to ensure that your website appears close to the top of relevant search results. A website designer who integrates digital marketing can create a website that also optimizes your search engine visibility and boosts visits to your website.

Make Navigation Simple

Once a visitor lands on your website it’s important to keep them there and direct them to the right information. Simple, clear, and easy to use navigation is essential for guiding visitors through your website and helping them to access the information they need. Experts say that when visitors land on your website they need to be able to find what they are looking for within two seconds. An expert web designer keeps your navigation powerful yet simple so visitors spend more time on your website and have a greater chance of becoming customers.

Choose Simple, Responsive Design

Responsive design involves making your website similarly accessible and easy to use across different devices and screens such as from desktop PC, to tablet, to mobile. Consumers are increasingly using mobile devices like smartphones to search for products and services and make choices about their purchases. If your website malfunctions or is difficult to use on the mobile screen, you will instantly lose a number of potential customers. Choose a website designer who’s experienced with responsive design to ensure your website remains effective on screens and devices of different sizes.

Give Your Website Flow

Websites don’t need to be packed full of information to be effective. Instead, it can be more useful to project the journey or flow that you want a customer to take through your website. This journey could involve initially navigating to your website through a landing page or a blog post that comes up in the search engine results. This journey may then lead to visiting your websites ‘About Us’ or ‘Services’ page which then ends in a click to your Contact page to turn your visitor into a customer. Intelligent website design can involve mapping out the path your potential customers will take to facilitate the journey through your website and converting visitors into customers.

Optimize Your CTA

The call to action, or CTA, is a suggestion that you should have on every web page that guides your visitor to take an action such as contacting your business or choosing your service or product. The call to action makes it easy for your visitor to make a decision about doing business with you. Make your call to action stand out with clear typography and bold colors. A great website designer can engineer a call to action that makes sense and makes converting visitors natural, rather than seeming pushy or irritating.

The advantage of professional web design is not just creating an attractive website, but a website that engages visitors and turns them into customers. Boost conversion and increase your customer base by choosing an experienced web designer for your business website. Contact D-kode Tech today to have your website conversion evaluated for free.

 

5 Ways A Technology Update Could Save Your Small Business Money

Tech has been an important part of our lives and businesses for a long time now. Staying up to date with the constant advances helps your small business technology stay ahead of the game and improve productivity year after year. But if you’re a small business, you may be wondering how you can compete with the technology and innovations of bigger businesses? With the help of an IT consultant or digital marketing manager, your small business can update processes and save money.

Update Offline Operations to Digital

Many small businesses are still using ‘analog’ data options when they could upgrade to more efficient and environmentally friendly digital options. Most small businesses know that the paper option is slower and less efficient, but just don’t have the knowledge or time to do things differently. A professional IT consultant can help you design and implement digital solutions that are uniquely suited to your business to help you save time and money. Making documents, files, invoices and records digital helps to keep them safe and organized, as well as accessible over the cloud for multiple users.

Go Mobile

How long has it been since you reviewed your businesses IT assets and phone system? Many small business technology systems can benefit from reevaluating, updating and streamlining the devices they use to ensure  business and operations needs are met as well as possible. Choosing mobile devices that can go from the office to the field is perfect for businesses whose staff can work from home or at different work sites. Going mobile pairs well with cloud storage and the use of cost-effective online software and VoIP services.

Implement Digital Marketing Solutions

One of the greatest benefits of staying up to date with technology is that you also stay up to date with your target market. The goal of digital marketing is to reach your customers online with information that’s engaging and relevant for them. This helps to drive organic leads to your business from the clients who need you most. A digital marketing specialist can help you develop a unique digital marketing approach to fine-tune your website, blog and social media accounts to meet your marketing goals.

Use Cloud Storage and Backup

Depending on your data storage needs, cloud storage and backup can be useful to reduce your network costs and help your employees access important business information easily from any location. When setting up cloud storage and backup, its helpful to discuss your individual business goals and needs with an IT consultant to get a cloud solution that meets your security and practical needs.

Improve Productivity and Efficiency

Updating your PCs, devices, operating systems and processes with newer technology can improve your small businesses communication, productivity, and efficiency. This allows your employees to work more effectively and produce better results, ultimately meaning greater success (ie profit) for your business.

Updating your small business technology can make big differences for your profitability and efficiency. By streamlining processes, saving time and increasing efficiency, new technology can get your small business ahead and keep your employees happy. For specific recommendations for YOUR business, contact Dkode Tech today.

On Page SEO vs Off Page SEO: Which is Most Important for your Business?

Off-page Optimization. Closeup Landing Page on Laptop Display. Modern Meeting Hall Background. Blurred Image with Selective focus. 3D Render.

SEO, short for search engine optimization, is the practice of improving organic search engine page ranking with the goal of helping your business show up higher in search engine results. On page and off page SEO are two types of techniques that are used to achieve this goal. So, what’s the difference and which one is more important for your business?

What Is On Page SEO?

On page SEO is the process of adjusting elements on your website to help your webpages show up higher in search engine results. On page search engine optimization may involve adding the right keywords to your website content, regularly posting relevant blogs on your website, optimizing website code such as page titles and HTML tags, and making structural changes so that search engines can more easily crawl and index your website. On Page SEO requires access to the back end of your website, i.e. the ability to login and change your web design and code.

What Is Off Page SEO?

Off page SEO is a range of search engine optimization techniques that are implemented outside of your own website. Because off page search engine optimization takes place outside of your webpage, back end access to your website is not required for off page SEO. Off page SEO focuses on boosting the credibility and popularity of your website across the web. Off page SEO techniques include improving the number and quality of inbound links to your site, using social media and other websites to promote your site, and providing search engine and directory submissions. Off page SEO boosts your websites profile and helps your website appear higher in search engine page ranking results.

Which Is Right For Your Business?

So, should you work on on-page SEO or off-page SEO to boost your business’s website ranking? If you want to achieve the best results with search engine optimization you actually need to work on both off page and on page SEO in equal measures.

Both approaches are important for achieving the highest possible search engine ranking for your business website. Your website may already be strong in one aspect of search engine optimization but is lacking in the other aspect. However, having only on-page or off-page SEO will not be enough to really influence your search engine rankings. You really need to target both approaches for noticeable results.

How To Integrate On and Off Page SEO

One of the best ways to deal with this is to recruit the assistance of a professional website developer and digital marketing specialist. They can help you to balance and optimize your SEO strategy to help get your business website closer to the top of the search engine page ranking.

Driving more traffic to your website and boosting your online business relies on a targeted search engine optimization strategy to boost your website search engine rankings. Let a professional digital marketing specialist help you with chief better results with balanced and targeted on page and off page SEO strategies to help you achieve the search engine ranking you want.

5 Benefits of Regular Business Blogging

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If your business already has an online presence in the form of a website, you may be wondering if your business also needs a blog. Blogs can be released on a weekly or monthly basis, or in some cases businesses post multiple times per week. Regularly updating a business blog has many advantages especially if you’re a small local business. Here we’ll look at the top 5 benefits of business blogging.

  1. Keeps Your Search Engine Strategy Strong

Search engine optimization or SEO is an essential part of marketing any business. Search engine optimization helps to ensure that your business name and website pop up high in the search results when somebody types in a search for the service or product your business provides. While there are many aspects to search engine optimization, some of the most important are ensuring that the content on your website and blog are optimized for related keywords to your industry, and that the content is fresh and readable.

Posting new blogs on a weekly or monthly basis helps you to add fresh content and keywords that are up-to-date with the latest advances in your industry. This gives Google and other search engines new content to index and more opportunities to create shareable content and back links that strengthen your sites search engine optimization.

  1. Helps You Connect With New And Old Clients

A blog can be like a mini update from your business that showcases the services or products you provide as well as your expert knowledge. Many visitors first access a website through its blog after searching for answers to questions that they need. An active blog also helps to show that your business is running smoothly and that you’re available for clients should they need you. Your existing clients can sign up to receive regular updates from your blogs, and new visitors can first connect to your business through the expert information you share on your blog.

  1. Shows You Know What You’re Taking About

Well written content in your business blog helps to establish authority. By answering a site visitor or client’s question in your blog post, you can show that you know what you’re talking about when it comes to your unique business or industry. The next time a reader needs a service or product related to the business you run, your company will be the first name they think of thanks to your expertly written blog posts.

  1. Creates Shareable Content

One of the most essential tools for connecting with your potential clients is social media sites such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest. Creating a blog post means you have an appealing and shareable piece of content that you can post on your social media to get people to click to visit your site. As people like, comment, and share your blog, the news about your business goes even further. This is an ideal way to connect with your customers and share updates without sending other communication such as emails out too often.

  1. Offers Ongoing Value

Because blog posts stay on your site months and even years after they’ve been written, they provide ongoing value to your business. A high-quality blog post written years ago can still attract hundreds of visits to your site. This means that while you’re getting on with running your business or even on a vacation, your blog posts are still working hard for you.

Regular business blogging is a small investment that pays off with big returns from the short to the long term. If you don’t have a regular business blogging strategy, talk to a digital marketing specialist today about how to boost blogging and site visits for a better digital marketing strategy.

4 Tips to Get Your Website To The Top Of Google Search Results

If you run a business or sell a product,a website can be the ideal tool to build your customer base.  To make your website work for you, it needs to show up in an internet search, preferably towards the top of search results.  Try these 4 tips to help get your website to the top of Google search results:

  1. Develop a Strategy

The first step towards getting your website to the top of Google search results is to have a plan for your website, as well as some strategy in mind.  Certain algorithms determine which websites show up in Google results and in what order.  Having a strategy to produce focused content around a few targeted areas, with a plan to grow over time, will help you see optimal results in that algorithm.  Websites with content that is frequently updated, also perform better.  So, make a plan for what information you will have on your website.  Then, consider how often you will update your content.

  1. Produce Quality Content

You may have thought through a strategy for your website, with some ideas for different sections and how often you will keep information updated.  Next, you need to produce quality content.  If you have mediocre content, people may visit your site one time, but then never again.  You need to balance quality and quantity in your initial content and your content updates.  For quality, make sure your information is accurate and well written.  Carefully proofread everything before publishing it.

  1. Optimize with Keywords

Google algorithms use the words on your website to figure out what information is there.  When somebody searches, they are most likely to find your website, if your frequently used words match their search.  As you develop your content, think about your products or business.  Identify keywords that represent what you have.  Use these keywords on each page of your website.  Be careful to include keywords in a natural way, rather than making awkward sentences just to fit them in. This technique can increase your ranking on a Google search.

  1. Include Informational Blogs

The better information your website provides, the more likely it is to show up on a Google search result.  People will also be more inclined to visit your site again if they can find the information that they want.  You can include resources on your website to entice visitors and an informational blog is a great way to do this.  Additional and new content through the form of frequent (perhaps weekly) blog posts on your site also allows you to link pages to one another.

If you run a business and use a website to help advertise, you want the time and energy you put into that website to pay off.  Working with a digital marketing specialist can help you to boost your website by skillfully building and optimizing your content and structure to improve you search rank.

5 Most Important FAQ’s About Digital Marketing

Acronym FAQ - Frequently Asked Questions.
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While many small businesses know that digital marketing is important, understanding exactly how professional digital marketing can help your business is essential. One of the key aspects of running a business is making sure potential customers know about your business, can contact you and can access your services. This is exactly what digital marketing can do for you in this technological age. Here we look at 5 of the most commonly asked questions about digital marketing and how online marketing can help your business.

  • How is Digital Marketing Better Than Traditional Marketing?

Traditional marketing includes older forms of marketing (print ads, radio spots, television commercials).  Digital marketing is digitally-based using the latest technology through the Internet on websites, smart phones, tablets, computers and other devices.  This is a better approach because it can reach more people, more quickly.  In the haste and hurry of today’s world, most of us have learned to block out traditional advertisements.  Digital marketing gets information directly in front of your target market, making it more likely they will learn about your product.

  • What Digital Marketing Techniques Should I Use?

There are many ways to approach digital marketing and use it to advertise your business.  Social media platforms are among the easiest and most user-friendly approaches.  Some of the more well-known options include Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, all of which can be used to reach a large potential customer base.  Many people also develop their own website and have a blog.  These options can give visitors and customers more information.  A blog can be used to build relationships with customers, keep them updated, and keep them engaged.

  • How Do I Make My Digital Marketing Most Effective?

Think about what you want to gain from your digital marketing and let that guide your planning and decision-making.  Consider your digital marketing voice or tone.  Do you want to present as professional or casual, as an expert or more personable, or are you primarily advertising your service or giving your reader helpful information?  As you develop your digital marketing, you may want to use Search Engine Optimization (SEO) to increase the likelihood of reaching your potential customer base.

  • How much Time, Energy, and Money will Digital Marketing Require?

This varies depending on what you will advertise and how you want to use digital marketing.  You may try digital marketing on your own and keep it small, perhaps using one social media platform, which might take just a few minutes each day.  Alternatively, you may decide to invest in a website, blog, and multiple social media platforms that can reach a wider base of customers.  This would require more time and energy.  You may then decide to seek out a digital marketing professional to assist you.  This is an investment in your business, saving you time and energy.  By working with a professional, you may find this approach pays off quickly and your website reaches the top of the Google search rank faster.

  • How Do I Know if My Digital Marketing is Working?

With digital marketing, the proof is in the data.  Gather information about your sales and customer base before you start.  Many platforms and websites give you data on the number of views.  You may also get feedback through positive responses/comments.  The best data will be an increase in customers, sales, and profits.

Learning about how digital marketing works can help you see the myriad ways digital marketing can benefit your business.  If you still have questions about how to implement digital marketing for your business, reach out to a digital marketing specialist to help make the best decisions for your company.