Resources Available

One thing that has been incredible to me this semester is how many resources there are for online businesses! Between Google Adwords and Analytics there is SO much valuable information.

This week, we focused more on Google Analytics. Some of the tools that has been super helpful to me (and will be in my future business career ) are as follows.

  1. Link Google Analytics with Google Adwords. I am so sad that for some reason my site wasn’t connected properly in the beginning! But one helpful tool for me will be to see how the keywords are working in my favor between adwords & analytics. When I started this course, I naievly thought, hey! I can put as many keywords into my site, surely people will see them! I didn’t really pause to think about the negative impact that might have. However, after a few weeks of pondering, updating keywords, etc., I realize that being selective in keywords does matter, a whole lot! I am excited to see how GA Keywords will help improve my site.
  2. Intelligence Analytics is new to me, but it can be super useful. From Google’s support, it says that “Analytics Intelligence will crawl through your data and surface insights on major changes or opportunities you should be aware of. For example, it can point out that a certain landing page is performing better than normal.” How cool is that? This will help you to catch ‘problem area’s’ on your site more quickly. This is something that is super useful as a beginner in a business!
  3. Bounce Rate’s help you see the percentage of visits that result in someone coming to your page and leaving after your landing page without any additional searching. This has helped me to improve my landing page. For example, one thing I hope to do in my sites is to connect with the emotion in my future clients. Currently, on my home page, I have three videos of my products; however I think that instead of making the customer click on the video, I should have  a video automatically playing so that it eliminates any distraction & automatically hooks.  This will potentially lower my bounce rate, since it will hook the audience upfront instead of making them make the first move.

So many other helpful tips and tools exist between Google Analytics & Adwords. What do you like to use?!

Michelle

Advertisements

Social Media

Social Media is one of the top marketing tools out there & it isn’t going to be going anywhere.  A few things that I learned this week that are key to social media are as follows.

From “5 Steps to creating a social media strategy for 2017” I learned the importance of diversifying my content. It can become super easy to get in a habit of posting content without value. This happens when we forget our audience and post because we know that it is time to post again in that week. However, by diversifying content, this will help your customers to stay focused. In the article they mentioned 4 ways to diversify. First, Read–create content such as blogs. Next, “look”. We can create content that makes people ‘look’ by utilizing the images we share, overlays, colors, texts, etc., all have an impact. The article stated that ” our brains process visuals 60,000 times faster than text”. This statistic amazes me! But I totally agree that when I am learning, I retail so much more through visuals. Third is through videos — most of the same principles apply as visual. Last is to listen. Podcasts are becoming increasingly popular–so this is one option of diversifying through listening. Another way I interpret this is by utilizing the music that is in any videos or posts you create. Music is powerful and can help connect followers.

Another way that I can utilize social media is to connect with my audience. I am aspiring to be a filmmaker.  The films I hope to create are ones that are ‘close to home’. In order to really connect with my clients and to give them the content they will remember forever will be to connect with them. I can do that by following them in return, responding to comments, tagging them in photos, sharing their photos/content & becoming a true friend to them.

The main thing I learned with social media is to make sure you have a goal in mind. The tips I provided to diversify content and connecting with my audience will mean almost nothing if there isn’t an end goal in mind. The end goal will help drive your success and help you measure success as well. Goals without actions are just random steps.

How do you utilize Social Media?

Michelle Hall

SEO Optimization

I don’t know about you, but I had heard about SEO optimization, but didn’t quite understand what it meant. This week I learned not only what it was, but a few ways you and I can implement SEO optimization within our sites.

Basically stated, SEO is search engine optimization. This is the process of “maximizing the number of visitors to a site”. SEO can effect the overall rating and quality of your site & can effect how many times your site shows up in search results. With that small knowledge alone, it hit me that SEO is a big deal and a VERY important concept.

A few ways that I am going to implement SEO as a result of my research this week are as follows. For more information and references go to ” A Visual Guide to Keyword Targeting  and On-Page SEO” 

  1.  Unique vs. Unique value. For the longest time, I was just focusing on what made my product ‘Unique’. However this week, I was taught that not only does my site need to be unique, but it needs to have unique value. It made me think about how ‘fufilled’ visitors are to my site and if they are taking anything away from the content created.
  2.  Utilizing the HTML! The last few weeks I have talked about keyword optimization. I didn’t realize how valuable it is to utilize the meta tags and title tag in HTML. I learned that Search engines actually do utilize these tags to help in bringing people into your site. What are these tags? The <title> tag, <meta description>, <meta keywords>, and <meta data> tags. For additional information on these specific tags, visit HTML <meta> tag at w3schools.com
  3. Lastly, I need to make my content ‘share friendly’. Sometime in the near future, I’d like to create facebook, instagram and possibly a pinterest profile for my pages. It is almost like ‘free advertising’ in a way since people share the content with others! Also, my products are visual and these platforms offer the most ‘visual’ vs. ‘verbal’ based content. As you grow your social media platforms and presence, this will also help your site grow.

Those are just a few of the takeaways I had from this week! What ideas do you have for your business?

Let me know! I’d love to hear what your ideas are!

Michelle Hall

Conversions & Trial and error!

I’ve always wondered how businesses were able to figure out how productive their sites were. & what I found out actually really surprised me! It is a lot easier than I had ever realized! How? With Google Adwords’  “conversion” page!

Google AdWords defines conversion as ” An action that’s counted when someone interacts with your ad (for example, clicks a text ad or views a video ad) and then takes an action that you’ve defined as valuable to your business, such as an online purchase or a call to your business from a mobile phone.” How cool is this?! Basically, it is a tracking device that allows you to chart how someone is interacting with your site & it is actually quite easy to set up!

First and foremost, you have to determine where you’d like to place your conversions. For me, the conversions take place on my contact site & when my guests submit their forms. I decided this would be the most effective place for me to chart conversions because this is my main contact between me and clients!

Click here to learn how to set up the rest of your conversion tracking on your site!

Next, I wanted to just mention the importance of trial and error when using google Keywords. I realized that my quality scores were so low (even non existent) on some of my keywords. I was pretty disappointed because I had worked really hard on what I thought was the perfect list of keywords! This has helped me realize that keywords are a work of trial and error! Different keywords might spark different interests at varying times of the year, the climate, the environment, styles, trends, etc! They are always changing! For example, I went back to the drawing board trying to think of some new and improved keywords & ideas that I had…..I realized that if someone was getting married in the winter, they might search “Winter Wedding ideas” instead of simply ‘wedding’.  Since ‘Winter Wedding Ideas’ is more specific to the climate, the time of year and the ‘style’ of wedding, I am hoping this will generate traffic. Thank heavens we can change our keywords at our leisure! Don’t be discouraged, its part of the fun to try new words and see how they are working and if they are actually helping out! Trial and error is the key.

Best of luck!

 

Quality Source

This week lets talk quality score. There are three aspects that can really enhance your quality score. They are:

  1. Ad Relevance
  2. Improve landing page
  3. Use negative keywords

This week was an eye opener to me as I set my budget, I realized a lot of my keywords were either out of my budget range or that my quality score was low because they didn’t have strong relevance to the three items mentioned above. So, I’ve determined to do something about this!

First, I need to create specific ad groups. I mentioned this last week; but I need to go and do it! I would have liked to have my first ad be a more ‘generalized’ ad of what I do; but I am realizing more and more, that being specific will generate greater, more effective success. People will never find out about my business if I don’t get them to my page; so why not create specific ad groups to drive a more focused group? It will be a lot better for my dollar to do so!

Second, I will need to revisit my keyword planner tool and try to more effectively plan my keywords. Brother Colvin gave me a great suggestion to really think outside the box with the user’s full experience. For example, when I was thinking about missionary homecoming films, he encouraged me to use words like “Provo MTC”, “Missionary mall”, etc. Since those are typical things that missionary moms & missionaries look for! This has totally changed the way I thought about keywords.

Next, I need to utilize more keywords in my ads! This is such an important thing because I know, at least for myself, that when I type in a phrase in google and if I can’t see the exact phrase in the sites that pull up, I am a lot less likely to look any further! So if I am doing it…then I am sure I am not the only one! I want to include more keywords in my searches.

I believe each of these will help increase my quality score because it will help my ads to have a stronger focus, it will help customers find what they are looking for and it will even help them to find what they didn’t even know they were looking for! I am excited to see how this goes!

What are some things you have tried to help improve your quality scores? I’d love to hear about your ideas.

 

Michelle Hall

 

 

Google Adwords

Google AdWords is a must have in your business success. This is my own personal opinion, but after the research I’ve done today ,I’ve realized that AdWords is the place to start in your business.

I am creating a film business. I love to create videos for weddings, LDS Missionary Homecomings, and more! So! I created a google AdWords account as a great start up tool and it was very easy! Currently, I started off by creating one Ad campaign that is a general ad for my business as a whole. However, I learned that one successful way to use AdWords is to create multiple campaigns and ads within each campaign. In the future, I hope to have 4 campaigns: Weddings, LDS Missions, Birth Stories, and  Lifestyle. From there, I can create different ads to focus on the specific products I am going to sell. It sounds like such a simple concept; but in reality, it is so easy to become narrow-minded! I love being able to receive feedback and new ideas from those around me because it opens so many new doors as to how to market my product. I am not one to love posting every single day on Instagram or Facebook to promote my product; so I am hoping that by utilizing AdWords/Keywords, It will allow me to build up a reputation in a different way.

Also, another thing that I was reminded of through this process of creating an ad, is to always be true to why I wanted to do this business in the first place! One of the ‘tips’ for creating successful Ad campaigns was to ‘Highlight why your product is Unique”. I LOVE seeing people relive the happiest moments in their lives. I love to capture those thrilling moments and to see families enjoy special moments together. I hope that my clients will be able to recognize my passion in that and that I’ll be able to convey that message in why “Michelle Hall Films” is unique.

I am excited to see where this road takes me!

Michelle Hall

 

 

 

Specifics matter!

Have you ever typed a VERY specific question into a google search? & then expected there to be an exact answer? I totally have. I won’t deny it! When it comes to my own questions for google, I am always very specific. However, as I was creating my AdWords campaign, I realized I was being very generic in my keywords that I was choosingHave you ever typed a VERY specific question into a google search? & then expected there to be an exact answer? I totally have. I won’t deny it! When it comes to my own questions for google, I am always very specific. However, as I was creating my AdWords campaign, I realized I was being very generic in my keywords that I was choosing. However, in the article “Creating a Successful Campaign” there were a few specific things I learned in utilizing a more ‘focused approach’.

First, I was taught to ‘Segment my Campaigns’. I learned from the article that because I am the one who knows the product inside and out I can ‘relate the product or service exactly to the prospect researched’. How can I do this? For my film business, It might be beneficial to take a few minutes and break down each of the products I am offering and really determine what it is that I am trying to do with each product.

The second pricinple that stood out was to be granular. The dictionary defines granular as ‘resembling or consisting of small grains or particles’. Initially my site was focused on the Utah and Idaho Region; but after reading this, it reminded me that there are so many capabilitie with the internet these days, that I should be utilizing specific locations, cities and regions to help reach a more specific audience.

I highly recommend checking out the rest of the article! It offered some fantastic insight and ideas that I hadn’t thought about before.

 

Strategy & the “Why”

Strategy & the “Why”

Up until now, in all honesty I had my goal of becoming a videographer; but I hadn’t really thought out my plan, strategy or end goals. However, I was reminded this week of the importance and strength that comes when we are willing to put in the time to strategize. My teacher, Brother Colvin gave a lecture on this yesterday and taught me that “When you are unique you WIN 80% of the time”. So, when creating a business, what is going to make you unique? What is going to make you different than all of the other people out there?! It is up to you to change the game & be willing to adjust to the ‘rules of the game’ when times change. This statistic motivated me because I was able to realize that even if I am just a small little business, I have potential to do amazing things despite the size!

This generation of millennials asks one question more than any other generation. What is that question? I can put it in one word, WHY? Our generation loves to know why something is important and how it can benefit us. We like to know why we should purchase one brand over the other and why it would make our lives better. The key is in finding out the WHY.

So, what I recommend is to sit yourself down and come up with your goals, strategy and plan. Take time to be thorough. Be thoughtful and honest with yourself with what you want to accomplish (and don’t let yourself be intimidated!—DREAM BIG!). & Last but now least, answer the question WHY. Why are you doing what you are doing? Why should your customers come to you, etc. Once you can do that for yourself, I really believe your business can take off.

Until next time!

Michelle Hall

Purpose Driven Site

Purpose. What does purpose mean? According to the dictionary, it is the ‘reason for which something is done or created or for which something exists; One’s intention or objective’. This week we learned about the importance of being web designers and not web artists. What I mean by that is that a designer not only needs to make a space look and feel different & better than the rest, but they also need to make the space functional. Whereas art, on the other hand, (as I learned on the discussion board) is free of expression and is left up to individual interpretation.

When designing a website, viewers will expect to be able to find results quick and not have to search for them. It needs to have a purpose in every aspect of the site. So, when I am creating my site, I am going to take away unnecessary objects, navigation menus, and text to create more white space and increase usability. In my opinion, the most important thing to ask when designing a website is to ask yourself “What purpose does the element serve?”. If it doesn’t have  a purpose, maybe consider taking it off your site to avoid confusion

Web Sites, and a little bit of Project one!

This week was all about websites and web hosts! Two topics that keep our internet world moving forward. There are so many things to consider when deciding which web host and website you will use. The main criteria, in my opinion, is what is your product? And what is your end goal? Without these two topics in mind, your website & host might not produce the desired result. Keep a focused mindset as you develop your site & host. The next criteria for a website that I feel is to determine how compatible/easy it is for you to use the website—both on your side as the author and on the side of the customer. Comfort in a webpage is vital! If someone can feel that they can easily navigate through your site with ease, they are a lot more likely to come back over and over again.

As for the Web Host, I have determined to use Bluehost. Our class has a discussion board and one thing I thought was interesting as we were discussing was that most everyone had decided that customer support was one of the key criteria in determining the best web host. There is nothing more frustrating than working hours on a webpage, only to have it not work! Again, the customer support needs to be strong on part of the author and customer.

Last of all, as we worked on Project One, I was reminded to be true to myself. I know that starting a video business is intimidating and difficult; and it might not have the best stats of all of the choices/options I had on my project; but it is my passion and what I feel the strongest about! So, as scary as it is, I am going to go for it. I learned a lot about the importance of looking at the product from multiple angles and really analyzing the product and comparing it to other things before just jumping in. Lets do this!

Best of Luck to you in your pursuits!

Michelle Hall