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6 Ways That Neglecting Your Website is Killing Your Brand

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By Tom Snyder, President and CEO of Trivera

Over our 20 years in business, we have seen most of our customers fall into one of two categories. The first is the type that make their web presence a focus of a digital Marketing Stratgey, constantly updating, supporting, measuring, analyzing, improving and investing in it. The other type are the ones who contracted us to build their site, and despite our recommendations that digital marketing needs to be an ongoing process, and not just an event, still treated their launch like a drive-by.  The very vehicle that was supposed to help their business flourish in the growing digital economy now stands as a testimony to four, nine and even thirteen year old technology.  What may have been state of the art brand re-reinforcement at one time, is now the brand killing equivalent of a dilapidated building in a bad neighborhood.

When pressed to consider an update, a new focus, or additional inbound marketing efforts, the typical response is "we just don't have the money."  While that might seem like a justifiable and economical approach, it's short sighted. Your neglect is actually costing you money.

Here's why:

1.) Not regularly updating your website's content causes it to drop in ranking in search engines. Lower ranking means less traffic, resulting in fewer sales.

2.) Not executing a sound inbound marketing plan reduces the number of potential visitors who even know your site exists. That means less traffic, resulting in fewer sales.

3.) Not having an organic search engine optimization plan puts you behind all of your competitors who do. That not only means less traffic and fewer sales for you, but also more traffic and more sales for them.

4.) Not keeping up with the current best practices for navigation and visitor expectations for functionality reduces the number of site visitors who become customers. That means traffic is coming, but leaving without buying, resulting in fewer sales.

5.) Not keeping your Content Management System and operating environment up to date leaves it vulnerable to hacks and hijacks, causing things to not work in your site that you may not even be aware of. Sometimes it means your site is offline entirely. That means traffic is coming, getting frustrated because your site doesn't work properly...or at all...resulting in fewer sales (and maybe even thinking you've gone out of business).

6.) Not having a responsive site built around user journeys  loses the growing number of customers who use smartphones and tablets as their preferred web device. That means less traffic and more visitor frustration, both of which result in fewer leads/sales/conversions.

I've said before...ad naseum...that your brand is not your logo, it's the promise of an experience, and everything you do either reinforces or erodes that brand. And a crappy old website erodes your brand just as badly as letting your building get run down, not being able to provide the product or service your customer expects or making them put up with a  poor salesman or CSR.

With your website, you're either moving ahead or you're falling behind. Thinking that doing nothing keeps you where you are is a delusion.  The time to begin getting serious is long past, but before you start executing a hodgepodge of tactical efforts, the better plan for long term success is to take a strategic approach. 

Trivera Has an Opening for a Web Designer/Front End Developer

Trivera is looking for a passionate, experienced Web Designer/Front End Developer that can design compelling websites and user interfaces based on the right composite of client direction and current best practices for navigation, design and UX. Concrete5 and Magento are our preferred platforms, but Joomla!, Drupal and/or Wordpress experience will suffice. 

See the rest of the details here.


Three Things You Absolutely Need to Know About Mobile

by Tom Snyder, Founder and CEO

Every day, I read articles about the trends and tricks other marketers are using to achieve success with their digital efforts, and post links to the best half dozen blogs and articles on Twitter. By now, smart marketers know enough to take a strategic approach to their efforts, focus on creating user journeys that result in conversion, and make sure their website is optimized for the right keywords. However, because it’s only become important recently, there are a lot of misconceptions about mobile marketing. Here are three you absolutely need to know:

1.) Your lack of mobile traffic to your website is BECAUSE of your non-mobile-friendly website, not proof that you don’t need to have one.

I’m constantly amazed by how many marketers tell me they have no need for a mobile friendly website because they don’t get many mobile visitors! There’s a reason for this. Did you know that Google removes non-responsive sites out of its results when people search on a mobile device? I recently showed a client an identical search on both a desktop and mobile device. Their site was on page one for the desktop search and totally disappeared from the same search done on a mobile device. Companies that have responsive, search optimized sites are now getting 60 - 70% of their traffic from mobile devices, achieving lower bounce rates, garnering higher mobile conversion rates, and getting even better rank for non-mobile searches. A mobile/responsive website should be your highest priority right now.
 
2.) B2B marketers need mobile too. 

A common misconception among many B2B marketers is that there aren't enough members of their target audience using mobile devices as part of their job to demonstrate meaningful ROI. However, research shows 49 percent of B2B researchers who use their mobile devices for research do so while at workWith mobile use for B2B purchase research jumping 91% in the past two years, I can’t believe you’re flushing leads and sales by not providing a solid UX for the purchasers who choose to do business with you on mobile devices.

3.) While you DO need mobile UX, you probably DON’T need an app. 

Building an app is an expensive mistake if a fully responsive website will accomplish your goals. Research shows that a majority of mobile users only use a tiny handful of apps. Unless you are Facebook, chances are your app won’t be one of them. Most of the content and functionality people require (plus SEO ranking authority) can be accomplished with a robust mobile-optimized website. Unless all the functionality you're considering for your mobile users requires an app, please, don’t even consider spending money on one.

Bob Dylan said, "You don’t need a weatherman to know which way the wind blows." And you shouldn’t need me to tell you that the winds of success are strongly blowing in a mobile direction.  There’s still time in 2016 to get your mobile marketing on the right track.  Don’t make me have to tell you again next year.

3 Major League SEO Strategies to Ensure Your Blog Hits It Outta the Park Everytime!

homerun_opt.jpgby Katie Fleming, Search Engine Specialist

I find myself watching an abundance of baseball lately. Little league has become my life. I'm also doing a great deal of search engine optimization - sometimes at little league. (DON'T tell my kids!) What I've come to realize is that these seemingly very different aspects of my life are actually more similar than I had ever imagined. Baseball - and search engine optimization - are games we play and they have become, in their own respect, "America's Favorite Pastime."

Analyzing the similarities between these pastimes is easy: There are basic rules to be followed in order to succeed in the game and each game has an umpire to determine fair play.

In Search Engine Optimization, the umpire's name is usually "Google." If you're a new player, you're typically stuck on the bench or in the "Google Sandbox" until you've proven you're capable of holding your own on the field. Once you've figured it out, they bring in a new pitcher who throws you a curve ball. In SEO, this would be Google changing its algorithm again.

The most heartbreaking reality is when you're playing well, winning, and your competitor hits a grand slam causing your team to lose despite your best efforts. That indicates it's time to revisit your strategy. In baseball, and in Search Engine Optimization, a good coach is the difference between winning consistently and a losing streak that might ruin your season, or cost you your audience. Here are some major league coaching tips that will have you swinging for the fences every time your blog is at bat...and help keep you and your team in the "W" column!

1. Fresh and original content is key! Sometimes you need a fresh arm or a DH to ensure a win. The same is true of SEO and blogging. Don't copy/plagiarize other's content. Make it your own and make it fresh and new. This might seem obvious, but session IDs, URL parameters, and printer friendly pages can all create duplicate content. Make sure your meta tags are different too.

2. Use long-tail keywords. Long-tailed keywords are great for blogs. They can bring valuable traffic to your site with little competition. Do your research and pick one niche topic. You want to be specific and ensure your audience fills the stands. Do not keyword stuff your blog.

3. Finally, monitor your blog. Every good team manager keeps stats on their team. You need to do this as well. Check Google Analytics to get to know your fan base. Where and how are they finding you? Track their interests and behavior and set up conversion tracking. Beware of "spam traffic." They will always have a 00:00:00 average session duration. You can filter those spoilers out of your Google analytics traffic and block them with your .htaccess code. Nobody wants a hater in the stands next to them!

Finally, remember it takes a team effort to create a winning season. We're always here for you and ready to help you get to the Big League, so let us know if you need a new head coach, base coach or even a relief pitcher for your SEO and we'll suit up for YOUR team! Play Ball!

image licensed by adobe stock

About Katie Fleming

katie01.jpgKatie Fleming is one of Team Trivera's SEO/SEM/DIgital Advertising Specialists.  In her role, Katie  has a proven record of success in managing our clients’ successful SEO and PPC campaigns by achieving measurable results  and driving ROI.

Trivera has an Opening For Digital Project Manager

Are you a rockstar digital project manager in search of your next opportunity? We have an immediate opening.  

Project-Manager-Job-Description1.jpgTrivera is seeking a highly organized and experienced Digital Project Manager. This person must have a proven track record of managing a development team, as well as possessing excellent communications skills, a high level of organization and attention to detail.

Key responsibilities include, but are not limited to:

• Managing our internal website development team
• Determining priorities for both scheduled and unscheduled tasks
• Managing website development projects from conception through completion
• Keeping projects on time, within scope and on budget
• Manage project related internal communications as well as some client communications
• Work with business development team to review quotes, statements of work and annual contracts
• Prepare documents for client kickoff
• Set up projects in Teamwork (similar to Basecamp but better)
• Manage internal pipeline for scheduling current and future projects
• Manage calendar for multiple team members as it relates to scheduling and reminders for events
• Setting up Google Analytics accounts
• CMS editing as needed for simple client requests

To meet the minimum requirements of this role, you must:

• Be experienced in people and process management
• Have proficiencies in Teamwork (or Basecamp) and Gantt Charting
• Possess exceptional written and verbal communications skills
• Be able to schedule and run effective project/client meetings 
• Be highly organized and extremely detail oriented
• Be capable of multi-tasking efficiency and managing multiple projects simultaneously
• Be cognizant of the fact that the client's satisfaction, expectations and success are the most important elements that are being managed
• Have a sense of humor

To be a rockstar in this role, you will also have:

• A complimentary technical skill set to what Trivera does. Options includes experience with UX, SEO/PPC, analytics, Front End Development and/or Back End PHP programming.
• Experience working with open source Content Management Systems (CMS) ie: Concrete5, Magento, Joomla, Drupal, etc.

Trivera’s focus is on custom website design and development but also includes:

• ecommerce application development
• Content management systems
• Intranet and extranet
• Responsive web development
• Search engine optimization (SEO)
• Pay-per-click (PPC) advertising
• Digital media and marketing

This is a full-time position in our office located in one of the coolest Historic buildings in Waukesha County, in Menomonee Falls, WI.

Benefits: Trivera offers a competitive salary, flexible start and end times, paid time off, paid holidays, a welcoming and casual culture, complimentary beverages, a collaborative working environment, weekly Friday happy hours and an option for summer hour work weeks. We encourage a healthy work / life balance in our team members.

To be considered for this position, send your resume, in confidence to empinq@trivera.com 

Trivera Offering Internship Opportunity

IMG_0221.jpgTrivera is offering a paid internship for the 2016 - 2017 school year.

You'll gain real-world experience by participating in every facet of client work, from onboarding meetings and strategic planning to content creation and entry for websites, social media plans and executions, digital advertising, SEO, and more. If you're looking to be involved, gain hands-on experience, and the opportunity to participate in real projects for real clients instead of hiding out in a cubicle, this is the place for you. You'll receive close mentorship and supervision while also having the opportunity to work independently and contribute ideas. This position reports directly to the VP of Client Strategy and integrates with the sales, web development, and project management team members.

Description:

This is a paid 10 - 15 hour/week position with a flexible schedule.

What you'll do:

  • Write web content, case studies, email campaigns and blog posts
  • Assist with social media community management
  • Develop content calendars
  • Participate in the development and presentation of client plans
  • Participate in creative brainstorm meetings
  • Enter content in websites during build-outs
  • Conduct market and consumer research 
  • Prepare reports
  • Attend meetings and take notes as needed

What you'll learn:

  • The onboarding, research, and strategic planning process
  • How to develop brands and communications plans
  • How to uncover marketing opportunities and present your ideas to the client
  • SEO/PPC basics
  • How to create budget estimates and present them to clients
  • Effective client communication
  • Daily project management

Qualifications

  • Enrollment in a college degree program (Juniors or Seniors preferred) in Marketing, Advertising, PR, Communications, or a related field 
  • Strong written and oral communications skills
  • Critical eye for detail
  • Self-motivated and organized with the ability to juggle multiple projects
  • A positive attitude with the ability to meet new challenges and solve problems
  • Professional appearance
  • Knowledge of social media for business or website development preferred 

Compensation & Benefits

  • Work in a fun environment with flexible hours 
  • 10 - 15 hours/week
  • $10.00/hr
  • We are happy to work with you to help obtain academic credit

Company profile

Trivera is one of Milwaukee's oldest and most respected digital marketing firms. We started as a website design shop back when most people didn't even understand how the internet worked. Now we work with some of Milwaukee's largest and most well-known brands in the travel and tourism, hospitality and entertainment, and healthcare industries. Our team provides strategic digital marketing roadmaps for clients that integrate best practices in branding, content generation, social media, SEO, PPC, and digital display advertising. We're a group of experienced and enthusiastic marketers who work had to generate meaningful results for clients - and we have a lot of fun doing it!

Interested? Contact Christina.Steder@trivera.com.

6 Steps to Building Your Content Marketing Machine

AdobeStock_78484725.jpgBy Jeff Ganger, Trivera Interactive

You have a problem. The phone isn’t ringing. You need to fill your pipeline and hit your sales goals. You aren’t happy with the the marketing tactics you are using, and you know your website can be utilized as a more effective sales and marketing tool. The solution? Develop and implement content marketing.

What is content marketing? Here is a great definition from Corey Wainright at Hubspot:

Content marketing is a marketing program that centers on creating, publishing, and distributing content for your target audience -- usually online -- the goal of which is to attract new customers.

The most common components of a content marketing program are social media networks, blogs, visual content, and premium content assets -- like tools, ebooks, or webinars.

I’m inclined to just use the term “digital marketing” because content marketing is a component of an overall online marketing strategy. Since most of our time is spent online, either through our phones or our computers, it’s where the bulk of our attention is held and where companies have been experiencing the greatest marketing ROI over the past several years. That trend is only going to grow in the near future.

So, what are the components to a successful marketing plan that is designed to bring in more sales? We have identified the following 6-step process that covers the basics of the content marketing methodology.

1. Create a strategy and identify the tactics to use
Begin by identifying your goals and objectives, your ideal customers, where they spend their time online, and defining key performance indicators as well as how you will measure ROI.

2. Create and maintain a strong website
This sounds obvious, but a great site is one that makes it easy for your ideal users to navigate and interact with you, AND allows you to build new pages or add content frequently. Develop your website using a solid, open source content management system (CMS) such as Concrete5 (our favorite) or WordPress, then apply solid user experience (UX) principles. Once your site is built, constantly monitor your goals in Google Analytics to understand your site’s performance and where your visitors are dropping off.

3. Generate more traffic (Blogging, Social Media, SEO)
This is where the rubber hits the road. Create content that is useful and informative to your ideal clients, and then publicize that content on social media. Blog articles can generate up to 55% more traffic for your site, and two-thirds of internet users are on social media1. Bottom line: if you aren’t publishing content, you are missing out on potential sales. Be sure to use an SEO expert to ensure that your content is optimized. This is important, since 46% of internet searches are specifically for products and services. You can also use PPC, Facebook ads, and other paid methods of generating traffic to your site.

4. Convert traffic to leads (Create an offer, capture email, nurture leads)
This is the heart of content marketing. By offering white papers, buyer’s guides, eBooks, webinars, podcasts, and demos in exchange for email and other contact information, you convert your visitors to leads. This allows you opportunity to connect with these leads to build a relationship.

5. Convert leads to sales (Nurture leads via email and phone)
Add email information to your CRM or your email campaign software, then use your software to connect with your leads and engage with them. By providing targeted, specific information that is of interest to them, you nurture the relationship and lead them further down the sales funnel. By following up and providing helpful information and answering questions, the sales staff can convert these leads to sales.

6. Measure your website data. Adjust monthly.
Google Analytics can help you set goals for your website and measure its performance. Some metrics to include:

• Traffic to leads
• Leads to customers
• Cost per lead
• Cost per customer

Telling your story and offering valuable information is the basis for a solid digital marketing strategy. By understanding the basic concepts of the content marketing process, you can build a powerful sales tool that will position you as a trusted expert and help you target and land clients you really want.

Was this article helpful? What else would you like to know about? Let us know!

If you’d like to know more about the process and how we can help, drop me a line or connect with me:

Twitter: @jeffraaay 
Instagram: papa.gang 

1 Source: Hubspot 
2 Source: Hubspot 
image licensed by adobe stock

About Jeff Ganger 

jeffcrop.jpgJeff Ganger is one of Team Trivera's Digital Marketing Strategists.  In his role, Jeff assists our clients by creating digital marketing strategies that include websites, social media, and inbound marketing tactics to reinforce their brands and drive ROI.

 

How Much Time Do Most People Spend Online?


How much time do most people spend online?

Did you know July is National Anti-Boredom Month. And what do most people do when they’re bored? They go online! According to a recent Pew Research survey, one-fifth of Americans report going online, "almost constantly."

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Christina Steder Becomes Newest Member of Team Trivera

christinabiopic.jpgTrivera Interactive has added Christina Steder as V.P. of Client Strategy. In her new role, Christina will provide strategic direction for our clients - linking their ongoing online and content marketing needs to business goals and ROI. 

Christina possesses 15+ years of experience in consumer product, professional service, and nonprofit marketing as well as brand strategy and client service, beginning her relationship with Trivera as our contact person for one of our clients in 1999. As the former President of Clear Verve Marketing, Christina continued her relationship with us, building a leading content marketing firm that specialized in providing marketing services to professional service providers, nonprofits, and community organizations. At Clear Verve, Christina partnered with Trivera to provide the web development and technology elements for her agency's client engagements. Most recently, Christina served as V.P. of Integrated Marketing at Zizzo Group. We're delighted to finally have her here as a key member of our leadership team.

When she's not helping our clients, she's busy driving the "Mom Limo" for her three daughters who keep her busy with their activities. She's also enjoying the sunshine and fresh air that comes with her new daily commute to work, which is now just a short walk away from our office in the Falls.

Jeff Ganger Joins Team Trivera

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Meet Jeff Ganger, Team Trivera's new Digital Marketing Strategist.  In his new role, Ganger will assist our clients by creating digital marketing strategies that include websites, social media, and inbound marketing tactics to reinforce their brands and drive ROI.

Jeff possesses 15+ years of experience in print and website design, creative direction, inbound marketing and sales. A former entrepreneur, Jeff has launched several digital marketing and communications businesses. His experience also includes time spent as a designer for agencies in Milwaukee and St. Paul, Minn. 

When not busy with Trivera clients, Jeff dabbles in photography, cycling, image making, and beer brewing. He writes, sells t-shirts and books out of his garage, and hot rods anything with a motor. He plans on eating his way through the world, one adventure at a time.  He also practices martial arts with his son, making him both an MMA ninja as well as a Digital Strategy ninja!