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How Bing Ads (And PPC) Work

At the most basic level, Bing Ads work like Google AdWords. So if you’re familiar with the concept of PPC in general, you can probably skip over some of this article.

Essentially, PPC ads are ‘Pay Per Click’ ads. That means that you will literally be paying per click – paying for each person who clicks on one of your adverts. The reason that this is such good news is that you will never pay anything for a campaign that was a complete failure. If you create an advertising campaign for Bing and not one person looks at it, then it will cost you literally nothing.

What this also means is that you can precisely calculate the cost of each visitor to your site. This is important because you can then use that information to calculate how much each customer is worth and thereby start making very accurate projections about your earnings/identifying the best ways to spend your money.

Advanced Bing Ads

So the next logical question is how much you’re going to spend on each click. And the good news is that you get to choose this. You get to choose your maximum spend and you also get to choose your budget for the day.

First, you define your CPC or ‘Cost Per Click’ which is going to be the maximum amount of money you are willing to spend for each new visitor. You’ll probably want to keep this fairly low – the most that brands will generally tend to spend is up to $2 but even that is unusual. Generally, though, you’ll want to set this a bit lower and your average will probably come in around 10-20cents.

The next thing to do is to set your daily budget. Once the accumulated clicks you’ve received reach this amount, they will then stop and you won’t spend any more money. So in theory, if you set your CPC to 20 cents and you set your daily spend to $20, that should mean you get 100 visits to your site for that amount.

But things get a little more complicated seeing as you don’t tend to spend the full amount of your CPC. That’s because there’s a bidding system that takes place which means you’ll offer to spend a lot less. The way this works is simple: if there are two or more adverts both competing for the same space on Bing, then they will enter into a ‘bidding war’.

The ad with the highest CPC will be the one that wins and gets shown but the owner of that Ad will only be charged the minimum amount that it needed to win. The easiest way to understand this is to think of it just like eBay – on eBay, you can set your maximum bid but you’ll only end up paying $1 more than the next highest bidder.

The same is true with most PPC campaigns and that’s why you end up spending 33.5% less on Bing vs Google – because the lower amount of competition means that your CPC won’t be as likely to get driven up. And of course, you also need to consider that your ads will be shown a lot to people who don’t click.

You don’t pay anything for these ads but that doesn’t mean they’re worthless to you because you’ll still be getting exposure and you’ll still be building your brand!

Targeting

The other thing that most PPC ad networks have in common is the ability to ‘target’ a specific demographic. This means that you can identify who your ‘buyer persona’ is and profile your ideal customer and from there, then target that person specifically with your adverts.

The way you do this with both Bing Ads and Google AdWords is by targeting search terms. When you pay for these ads, you are literally putting your adverts on the SERPs relating to particular search terms. You do this by choosing a keyword, or ‘keyphrase’, which is going to be the thing that you want people to search for in order to find your site.

So for example, if you were selling a hat, your ‘keyphrase’ would probably be ‘buy a hat online’ or ‘cheap hats’ etc. This is now a targeted ad because it lets you advertise specifically to people who are looking to buy the thing you have. That means they will fit within your target audience and actually, this makes them ‘qualified leads’.

Another way this might work is by going the slightly longer-term route and focussing on search terms related to interests. You might have a site where you blog about fitness for example and sell supplements and training clothing. In this case, your keyword might be ‘how to lose weight’ or ‘fitness articles’.

A good keyword is going to be one that is both popular with your specific target audience and that is not overly competitive. We’ll look at this in more detail in the subsequent articles.

Facebook Ads

Rounding out the ‘holy trinity’ of PPC networks is Facebook Ads. Facebook Ads is similar to Google AdWords or Bing Ads in terms of being PPC but the difference is in where the ads are shown and how they are targeted. As you might have guessed, Facebook Ads are shown on Facebook and will appear in the home feed and sidebars while you are browsing.

These then show ads that are once again targeted to the person using Facebook but the way this differs is that the ads are targeted based on information that the user has given Facebook – information such as their age, their sex, their marital status, their location, and even their hobbies and interests.

This allows you to even more precisely target the right person but not necessarily at the right time when they’re looking for products. When someone is browsing Facebook to catch up with their friends, they’re more likely to just be frustrated to see adverts popping up.

With all this in mind, Facebook Ads is another useful platform to add to your campaign in conjunction with Bing and Google AdWords – just make sure you’re using the right ads for the right location!

Advanced Bing Ads

Learn to Take Amazing Photos In Social Media Marketing

For posting social media marketing content to sites like Instagram, it can really pay to learn how to create great quality photos. That means you should be able to create photos that tell a story, sell a dream and make people instantly want to click on them and open them from the thumbnail alone.

A good starting tip is, of course, to invest in a better camera. This is going to instantly give you much better-looking shots and also create more options as you can take photos in lower light, or adjust things such as the focus so that you can blur out the background. All these things will help you to build a bigger audience while also creating a more professional look and feel for your social media accounts that will bring in more followers.

Some more tips:

  • Think about lighting – Rembrandt lighting is best which means that you’re lighting your subjects from the side rather than head on which creates ‘flat lighting’
  • Think about composition – Your images should have a sense of depth, which can be achieved by having elements in the foreground, middle ground, and background. Another tip is to have something that leads from the foreground to the background, such as a pavement or a road.
  • Tell a story – Don’t always make your subject obvious. Instead of taking a photo of a party, try photographing the aftermath of the party, or an empty glass with confetti around it. This tells the audience more and creates a much more artistic shot.

Automate

All this can be a lot of work and especially when you consider that you’re trying to get your content onto all those different social media accounts and keep up regular posting. It’s for these reasons that it can be a good idea to automate some of the processes by using tools like IFTTT (If This Then That at IFTTT.com) or Hootsuite (Hootsuite.com).

These allow you to schedule posts, or to post the same message to multiple different accounts at once rather than just the one. That means that you’ll never go a long period with no new posts on your sites – but it’s not an excuse not to ever engage with your visitors manually or to create your own content from scratch.

Cultivate True Fans

All of this should be practiced with a single end in mind: to create not just social media followers but true fans. Your aim is to make people passionate about your brand. Don’t think about quantity, think about quality.

In turn, you’ll get a higher quality of fan – people who appreciate the work you’re putting in, your original and unique content and your clear vision. And as the article of the same name says, all you really need is 1,000 true fans and you’ll find that your brand grows exponentially from there!

Your Master Guide to SEO for Bing

SEO for Bing is a little bit like that slightly slow friend that you had in school who didn’t really understand jokes. Or to put it another way: as an AI, Bing is probably somewhere on the spectrum. Yes, taking things too literally is one of the most common criticisms leveled at Bing and that’s because it has a tendency to simply look for exact matches in the content.

Point #1 – Bing Likes to Take Things Literally

If you search for ‘I like to eat steak’, then Bing will look for websites that have that phrase or something similar somewhere in their text:

On the other hand, Google just looks for content about steak and about people who like to eat steak:

In this way, Google shows a little more understanding and has more ability to read between the lines. Not that this is always a good thing mind. Sometimes Google’s second-guessing can actually be a bit irritating and can lead to results that aren’t directly related to what you’re looking for. If you ask a question for instance, then Bing will be more likely to break up a page where someone else has asked that same question. And this can be very useful!

But what it means for you, is that it’s still worth using some keywords. Whereas Google is much more about ‘latent semantic indexing’ and writing ‘around the subject’, perhaps using some long-tail keywords – Bing will still reward you for including the basic keywords you’re trying to rank for. So try and do a little of both.

You’ll want to use a slightly lower link density than you used to if you want to avoid being penalized for spamming by Google but you should still include some keywords in there for Bing!

Point #2 – User Engagement Matters

Something that Google and Bing can agree on is that user engagement matters. Except Bing is even more explicit about this if anything and has even coined a phrase to describe it the activity they want to avoid: pogo sticking.
There will be none of this, thank you very much!

Pogo sticking is when a website jumps from one result, clicks back and then clicks on another. This is what they want to avoid so if you want Bing to love you, you need to prevent your visitors from wanting to click back. This means you need to grab attention early on and it means that you need to think about your page speed, your design etc.

Point #3 – And So Do Click Through Rates

Another similar factor that Bing also takes seriously is CTR – Click Through Rate. In other words, how many people click on your link. So if they keep showing your website in their SERPs but no one ever clicks on it, then this suggests that your site doesn’t look very interesting. All it’s doing is cluttering up the page and taking up space that another site could make better use of!

This is quite a clever way for Bing to check that the results coming up are relevant – or that they seem relevant in the eyes of its visitors. This is interesting because it’s not something that Google talks about a lot. And improving your CTR is going to involve a rather different process compared with the SEO practices you’re probably used to! What improves CTR?

Many things but of course the title and meta description are going to be right up there. Think about what will be interesting for someone who is searching for the keyphrase that you’re trying to rank for. Make sure that there is a direct connection here and have all the signals pointing to the same topic.

And learn how to write engaging titles and descriptions!

Point #4 – Social Signals Are Big on Bing

There is some debate still as to the role of social signals on Google, even now. We know for a fact that getting +1s on Google+ will improve your Google ranking but whether the same is true for Facebook Likes is less certain. And if Facebook was central to Google’s strategy, then you might ask why BuzzFeed isn’t the number one result for every search.

But Bing has gone on record as saying that social signals do matter to them and this means that you should definitely include social media marketing as a big part of your marketing strategy.

Point #5 – Crawl Depth

Going back to your site content and keywords for a moment, it’s also interesting to consider the difference in crawl depth for Google versus Bing. Reportedly, Bing only crawls around the first 100kb of a web page, unlike Google which will read your whole site.

This then means that you should aim to include your keywords more heavily in the first portion of your content compared with the rest. And actually, this makes a lot of sense for Google too – for different reasons. Google actually looks at certain key points within your content as being more important as indicators than others.

The first paragraph is one section that is given extra importance, as is the last paragraph and as are the headings.
And by increasing the keyword density in the first paragraph, you can send the right signals to Bing without getting too spammy with keywords for Google. Everyone wins!

This also introduces some other interesting points though too. For instance, a lot of people will rely on sitemaps in order to help search engines index their site. This is one page that links to every other page on that domain – and it means that once the sitemap is indexed, Google knows where to find all future content you add.

But this won’t work for Bing if it’s only reading the top segment of the page!

If you want a sitemap to work for Bing, then you need to ensure that you put the pages you most want to be found right at the top. And if you’re adding new content, then you want to make sure that new content goes at the top of any list, rather than at the bottom.

Point #6 – Respect Your Elder (Content)

Bing believes in golden oldies. In other words, it believes that an older domain is likely more authoritative than a newer domain. So if you have a page that has been around for a long time, you’ll find that it gradually climbs up the rankings.

This is one thing that has personally always put me off about Bing. Most of the research I do requires up-to-date and current answers and that means I can’t make do with posts from 2012. When I search on Bing, I’m often left wondering if anything I’m reading is relevant anymore.

This is personal preference though. As far as SEO goes, it’s actually a good thing.

Why? Because it means that Google is going to like fresh content and Bing will give it some love as it starts to fade.
But do bear in mind that both Bing and Google prefer older domains. And Now for Some Rapid Fire Differences…
Of course, there are way more differences than we have space to go into in detail, so let’s take a look at some rapid-fire differences to finish off.

  • Bing likes keyword domains more, Google prefers brand-name domain
  • Bing takes site authority very important – it likes editorial content, older domains, and established organizations
  • PageRank is less relevant for Google these days – it has never been relevant for Google
  • Bing likes content to closely linked to a site homepage and it likes breadcrumbs

Another thing to take some time to learn about is Bing’s ‘Spam Filter’. This is how Bing decides whether or not to penalize sites that show up on its SERPs, so you need to make sure that you observe the rules Bing recommends.
This means:

• Being careful about your outbound links – only link to clean sites

• Don’t trade links

• Use Bing’s Webmaster Tools to find out if your site has been blocked

That’s right! Bing has a ‘Webmaster Tools’ just like Google does and it’s just as useful/invaluable for marketers. You can find this at www.bing.com/toolbox/webmaster.

Bing SEO – The Next Steps

The Alan Parson’s Project sang, ‘where do we go from here?’. Now you have lots of information about why Bing SEO matters, how it works and how it is different from Google. But you also know that you need to keep on focussing on Google. So what’s the best way to proceed?

Well, exactly as we said earlier.

For the most part, you’re not going to do anything that different. But you may want to consider including a few more keywords in your opening paragraphs. Maybe you show a little more love to your legacy content. Perhaps you reorganize your sitemap. Oh and definitely think about your titles, your meta descriptions and how these factors will impact on your CTR.

And in doing all that, you’ll be throwing Bing the occasional bone that will help you to succeed a little bit more on the second biggest search engine in the world. This will help you start tapping into that 30% market share that little bit more and hopefully improving your number of visitors.

And if the Googlepocalypse ever does come, at least you’ll have a backup site that will still be bringing you fresh visitors and helping you to run your business. And then everyone else will find themselves wishing that they’d paid just a little more attention to old number 2!

And one last thing! Why not go and take a look at your current rankings on Bing right now. If you haven’t looked before then it might surprise you just how similar, or different, the results are!

How to Run an Email Marketing Campaign

Steps on How to Run an Email Marketing Campaign

It’s now clear that you know why your small business should be using email marketing techniques to increase its consumer base, increase revenue and build brand awareness. However, be aware that if the email marketing
techniques are not used properly, they may fail to work and your business may end up attracting huge losses.

It is thus very essential that you know the proper ways to implement email marketing strategies. This will help you avoid alienating your consumers. There are three basics which you must get right before you can begin to expect your email marketing campaigns to start showing results.

These basics include:

  • Creating a list of individuals who will want to receive the message of your business
  • Crafting the message so that it’s not thought of as spam
  • Creating an effective system which will get the message into your viewer’s inbox

Once you’ve accomplished the three basics, you can work on a number of more sophisticated and detailed tactics to improve your results.

Here is a guideline that can assist you to run an email marketing campaign correctly:

Step1: Getting Started

For most business operators, the misconception that there has to be a marketing professional in order to implement an email marketing campaign successfully represents their biggest hurdle. Generally, email marketing can often be a lot easier than it sounds provided a person gets the basics right. Once you’ve decided to create an email
marketing technique, the next step for you is to start consolidation your name for your outgoing email list.

Step2: Creating an Email List

You’ll require a list of names as well as email addresses to start with so that you can begin getting your email marketing messages out there. Start by gathering together all of your contact information and names into one identifiable spot. Typically, the best way of organizing and categorizing your e-mail names list is using a
database.

This is not difficult and thus you do not require a computer science degree for you to use a database. You can use Macs Mactracker or Microsofts Excel Spreadsheet or anything else which you know how to operate well. Using a database to manage all your names will make you see the different email addresses that you already have. You can also begin with you business Rolodex and a list of current and previous potential consumers.

Step3: Coming up With Sign- up Sheets

If you do not already possess the email addresses of your consumers, it is important that you come up with sign up sheets so that they can provide you with their email addresses. An ideal way to do this is to provide a sign- up form at your storefront or on your business’s website, it is important that you encourage your consumers to sign up by
giving them something once they happen to give you their email addresses.

Benefit of Email Marketing to Small Businesses

Email marketing campaigns can assist your small business to develop awareness, loyalty, desire and trust with
its consumers. This form of marketing can be used to retain as well as engage existing consumers. Also, it can as well assist you in establishing new clients.

Here are a few of the many ways in which a well-established email marketing campaign can benefit small
businesses.

  • Cost-effectiveness:
    Email marketing campaigns are usually very cost effective. Basically, directing marketing strategies
    will require you to have a decent amount of cash in order to use them effectively. This is because you will be generating real content like printed newsletters or advertisements. Directing marketing strategies will also make you end up spending more cash in sending the real content out to the consumers through postal email.

On the other hand, email marketing uses electronic content that is often much cheaper to produce and sends it out to the consumers electronically. Note that sending content via electronic means is often much cheaper than sending it out in the real world.

  • It’s a Targeting Marketing Strategy:
    With email marketing, you can be in a position to target specific customers directly. This means that you can be in a position to focus on containing individuals who’re likely to react to your messages, while at the same time avoiding wasting your time and money in trying to reach those individuals who’re not likely to respond.
  • Tracking Data:
    With email marketing, you can be in a position to track data that can uplift your business performance. Since email marketing campaigns are done electronically, it can make it easy for you to track important data that can help you in the operation of your business. for instance, this form of marketing can enable you to track how many viewers opened your email, how many of them chose to subscribe to your emails, who forwarded
    your adverts to another person as well as who listed your emails as spam.

Generally, this data tracking system can make it a lot easier for you and your marketing team to figure out which of your email marketing techniques are producing reliable results and the ones that are wasting your time and effort.
Once you know this information, you can decide to alter your marketing techniques so that they can become more effective. Don’t you think that that is indeed great?

  • It Can Be Automated:
    Once you’ve got an idea of the types of content you intend to send out to your consumers through email marketing technique, it’s very easy for you to automate the process. Typically, this means that you can be able to schedule newsletters and emails on a weekly or monthly basis in advance. This can simplify the work for you when it comes to creating the desired content. Also, with this form of marketing strategy, you can be in a position to set up automated delivery hassle free and in the long run it can save you time and money.
  • They’re Super Fast:
    One of the best characteristics of the email marketing campaign is that it usually works really fast. A person does not require waiting weeks or months in order to see the results of his or her email marketing campaign- results. Your business emails once sent will instantly reach your consumers and will offer up- to- date
    content and information. In brief, email marketing techniques can assist small businesses to keep up to-
    date with their consumers and thus be able to operate in real time.
  • Boosting Revenue:
    This form of marketing can help your business in increasing its sales and generating more revenue. Email marketing can assist your business in generating sales via other channels. Therefore, take your time as a small scale business owner to create the right types of email marketing tactics, avoid dreaded spam level and your
    business will see an increase in its revenue within the shortest time possible.

What’s Email Marketing?

Email Marketing is the process of incorporating the use of emails in small business marketing strategy. It’s essentially the same thing as sending out mailers, newsletters and coupon books through the mail. The only difference with the other forms of marketing is that this marketing strategy occurs through electronic mail. Since most people around the globe use email as a form of communication, it is ideal that you come up with an effective strategy that will see you as a small business owner communicates with your clients via email.

Basically, there are numerous ways that you can use- mail marketing techniques to market your firm as well as your services to your consumers. For instance, you can use this form of marketing to reach potential consumers or you can use it to market your business in different public venues.

Types of Email Marketing 

There are three general types of email marketing strategies that you can use to market your small business. They include;

1. Direct E-mail:

The direct email refers to the practice of sending direct promotional advertisements and messages to the customer’s email account. Generally, these messages may often be announcements of great deals, sales or even special offers.
They may be used to spread the news concerning new services your firm is offering or the new locations that it can serve.

These emails will normally have a call to action included in them that encourages the consumer to take some sort of
action in order to receive promotional deals being offered by a particular company. The call of action can include asking the viewer to visit your business’s home page, signing – up for a service or making a phone call. Direct emails are also meant to tell customers about what is happening in a particular business.

2. Retention Emailing:

These types of emails are usually designed to inform the customers about a business. They are important marketing strategies since they can help you create long-term relationships with the customers. Despite retention emails providing advertisement and promotion options; they can also offer content that may be very valuable to the readers.
Retention emails have got content which will inform, engage and entertain the readers so that they’ll feel a connection with the business being advertised or promoted.

The most common form of retention emails used in email marketing techniques is the newsletter.

3. Straight- up Email Advertising:

This is a type of email marketing strategy that allows a person to use content created by another person. This means that with this type of email marketing, you can be in a position to attach your business advertisement to a newsletter or email that has been created by another firm. Let’s now have a look at how e-marketing can benefit your small business.