Facebook Growth, Amazon Spark, and LinkedIn Web Demographics

Welcome to this week’s edition of the Social Media Marketing Talk Show, a news show for marketers who want to stay on the leading edge of social media. On this week’s Social Media Marketing Talk Show with Michael Stelzner, we explore Facebook’s latest growth with Mari Smith; Amazon’s social network, Spark, with Jeff Sieh; LinkedIn’s […]

This post Facebook Growth, Amazon Spark, and LinkedIn Web Demographics first appeared on .
– Your Guide to the Social Media Jungle

Search to Social Ads: How to Use Google With Facebook to Build Niche Audiences

Does your business serve a specialized customer base? Wondering how to reach specific niche audiences with Facebook ads? To explore a strategy for retargeting specialized audiences using Google ads in combination with Facebook ads, I interview Shane Sams. More About This Show The Social Media Marketing podcast is an on-demand talk radio show from Social […]

This post Search to Social Ads: How to Use Google With Facebook to Build Niche Audiences first appeared on .
– Your Guide to the Social Media Jungle

How to Make Your Next Sale Through Instagram (Even If You’ve Never Been on the Network Before)

What if every lead you brought in was worth $44.60 to you? And you didn’t have to pay anything to get them?

Some get-rich-quick scheme?


Just one of the last organic options when it comes to traffic, and you’ve probably heard of it. It’s called Instagram.

Of course, Instagram has a bad rap. Most think it is just for posting pictures of food, mermaid tails, and inspirational quotes.

Instagram inspirational quote

But that couldn’t be further from the truth.

"Instagram has become a serious platform for driving leads and sales for business." ~Kim Walsh-PhillipsInstagram has become a serious platform for driving leads and sales for business.

Still not convinced?

My business used a five-step organic Instagram strategy that generated $7,182 — making each lead it created worth $44.60 — in 21 days!

And then we used paid ads on Instagram for a client and that resulted in a 1,000% return on investment (ROI) in 13 days.

Today, I’m going to share with you that same Instagram strategy that has led to our success and how you can make your next sale using Instagram.

But first, let’s quickly look at why you should be paying attention to Instagram in the first place…

Why Marketers Should Pay Attention to Instagram

Consider the facts:

  • Consumer Usage: Engagement with brands on Instagram is 10 times HIGHER than Facebook, 54 times higher than Pinterest, and 84 times higher than Twitter.
  • Businesses are spending money on Instagram: Instagram’s global mobile ad revenues are expected to close in on nearly $3 billion by the end of 2017. That figure would account for OVER 10% of its parent company Facebook’s revenues.
  • Consumers are purchasing through Instagram: (My fav fact!) Nearly a third of online shoppers (31%) say they are using social media channels to browse for new items to buy.
  • Consumers trust brands more because they saw them on Instagram: (This is a good one, too.) A majority of millennials surveyed – 70% – value non-celebrity endorsements, particularly from influencers they consider as peers.

Instagram is becoming a heavy hitter, and if you’re not putting it to use, you could be leaving money on the table.

Let’s change that, shall we? 🙂

Here’s how you can put my Instagram strategy to work for you.

Organic Instagram Traffic Campaign Results

My journey started with Instagram about a year ago when my firm, Elite Digital Group, started testing the strategies I was researching for my latest book, The Ultimate Guide to Instagram for Business.

We tested and experimented and determined what worked and what didn’t.

"What we discovered that did work, blew us away."By the way, one thing that didn’t work was using an “exact number” of hashtags.

There are more articles on how many hashtags to use than there are hashtags! 😉

And we found there is no exact number – the more hashtags we used, the more reach we got.

What we discovered that did work, blew us away.

We found we can drive organic traffic from our Instagram page into a sales funnel that converts by including a call-to-action (CTA) and link WITHIN the Instagram bio.

Including a CTA within Instagram bio

Here are the results from the most recent Lead Magnet offer we included in my business’ Instagram bio:

  1. We collected a total of 161 new leads from a report
  2. Total orders from these new leads: $7,182
  3. Average value of a new lead: $44.60
  4. Of those 161 leads, a total of 23 people ordered 54 products, so a buyer became worth an average of $312.26

All from organic (aka FREE!) traffic in 21 days.

How does it work? I’m glad you asked.

The Five-Step Instagram Strategy that Generated $7,182 

Over time, we have developed a model that works well on all social media channels, and Instagram is no exception.

Specifically, on Instagram, we:

  • Attract traffic through the use of hashtags
  • Get their contact information through a Lead Magnet offer in the bio
  • Then follow up via email on a series of messages all tied into the original topic in the Lead Magnet

"This system allows sales, in essence, to close themselves."The method I’m about to detail is like handing a remedy to someone who said they’re in pain – they told you what their issue was when they downloaded the Lead Magnet and now you are offering a solution to their problem.

This system allows sales, in essence, to close themselves…

Organic Instagram Strategy Step One

The first step of this system is to decide on the primary focus for your Instagram page, as in, the big idea you’ll post about.

For example:

  • A fitness guru might focus on 15-minute workouts you can do from the road
  • A real estate investor about creating success for your family
  • A business coach on getting more sales

It should go without saying, but keep in mind, the focus of your Instagram page should RELATE and ALIGN with your business.

For instance, the focus of my page, @KWalshPhillips, is how to get more clients in your professional practice and includes posts like this…

Example of Kim Walsh-Phillips Instagram post

Once you decide the primary focus of your Instagram page, develop an offer that is the next logical step from your page and that resonates with your audience, which moves us to the next step.

Organic Instagram Strategy Step Two

Step Two is to put the CTA and Lead Magnet in your Instagram bio.

We developed a free giveaway offer, a Lead Magnet, that was congruent with my Instagram page called the “Client Attraction Blueprint.”

We then linked to the Client Attraction Blueprint within my Instagram bio:

Client Attraction Blueprint CTA

When someone clicked on the Bitly above, they were taken to this landing page:

“Client Attraction Blueprint” landing page

Where they could then opt in:

“Client Attraction Blueprint” opt-in

The next steps focus on the Instagram posts you will create in your campaign.

(RELATED: [DOWNLOAD] The 15-Point Landing Page Audit)

Organic Instagram Strategy Step Three

Step Three is to identify hashtags to use in your posts that will attract your perfect prospects.

You can do this by visiting 10 pages in your niche and check out the hashtags of their most popular posts. Make a list of these popular hashtags and then use those hashtags on all of your posts.

And like I said earlier, we found the more relevant hashtags we used, the better our reach on Instagram.

Organic Instagram Strategy Step Four

Step Four is to post daily using all the identified hashtags from the previous step.

This is my approach when making Instagram posts…

My favorite app for creating Instagram posts is WordSwag.

It lets you create posts like this…

Examples of Instagram posts you can make with WordSwag

I batch up a bunch of designs at one time, and then post them once a day, using the same hashtags I’ve collected during Step Three.

I save all the hashtags I’m going to use for a campaign in my phone’s “notes.” Then, I copy and paste the hashtags from my phone’s “notes” to that day’s Instagram post.

We find our reach is better when we directly post to Instagram than when scheduling on a post scheduler like Hootsuite and Meet Edgar (but use what you need to get the job done).

Organic Instagram Strategy Step Five

Step Five is to put the lead into the sales funnel that makes sense with the topic of the first Lead Magnet.

"Keep focusing on what you already know your prospect wants to talk about."The secret is to make your funnel congruent.

Keep focusing on what you already know your prospect wants to talk about.

For instance, your Instagram sales funnel may follow this path:

  • You attract your lead in with the hashtag
  • Get them interested using your Instagram post
  • Get their contact information using your Lead Magnet
  • And follow up with engagement and sales marketing emails to turn them from a lead to a customer

(RELATED: The Ultimate Guide To eCommerce Email Marketing (Online Retailers, This One’s For You…))

For example, people who came in through The Client Attraction Blueprint Lead Magnet were added to a weekly email series.

This email series includes…

  • content
  • weekly promotions
  • webinars

…all meant to drive the lead from prospect to buyer.

For example, we used this email to promote a webinar:

Webinar email promotion

Then, during the webinar, we made two offers to attendees and directed attendees to that offer’s respective landing page.

The first offer was for our Facebook Profit Power course, an introductory “how to use Facebook to get more clients” course that focuses on generating traffic.

Here’s its landing page:

Facebook Profit Power Course Landing Page

The second offer was our Facebook Profit Power course, users are offered a chance to join our Powerful Professionals program. Each month, those in the program get a traffic strategy, four email templates to send to prospects and clients, and sales strategies:

Here’s the landing page for the Facebook Profit Power course:

Facebook Profit Power Course Landing Page

And that’s the organic Instagram sales funnel strategy we used to generate $7,182 in sales and 161 leads in 21 days.

You can use these same fives steps in your business to organically generate sales on Instagram.

But organic traffic can take time. What if you don’t want to wait? "You can use the same five steps in your business to organically generate sales on Instagram."

You can put some money behind it. 🙂

Now we’re going to talk about how we used Instagram ads to generate 1,000% ROI for a client.

(NOTE: Are you ready to tap into Instagram’s booming network of 600 million viable customers? Get Kim Walsh-Phillips’ Ultimate Guide to Instagram for Business to get the tools you need to drive sales directly from Instagram and grow your business.)

Get the Ultimate Guide to Instagram for Business by Kim Walsh-Phillips

Paying for Quicker Results: Instagram Ads Strategy

Of course, if you want to speed things up and get quicker results, then you can utilize Instagram ads.

If you’ve never run Instagram ads, you can learn more about setting them up here.

We ran a campaign for one of our private clients, Phelan Dental, and they had great results… all WITHOUT having an Instagram page!

The goal of this campaign was to drive dentists to register for an online, evergreen webinar.

Here are the top two performing Instagram ads we ran:

Paid Instagram Ad #1:

Phelan Dental Paid Instagram Ad #1

Paid Instagram Ad #2:

Phelan Dental Paid Instagram Ad #2

Notice the “more” within the copy of the ad.

Instagram ads run with “more” to get users to click on the ad. It piques curiosity and it works in your favor.

But it also means your ad copy will be truncated within two sentences, so you need to give the user a reason to click in the first line of your ad!

All in all, our client spent $207.99 on this campaign and it generated:

  • Total registrations: 25
  • Total sales $3,000

That’s more than 1000% ROI! That’ll buy a lot of food, shoes, and mermaid tails. (And with increased leads, you’ll soon be driving more than just traffic!)

I’m going to detail exactly how we achieved these results, but first, I want to share our Instagram Ads strategy in general…

Our Approach to Instagram Ads

When going into a new platform/audience/market, we ALWAYS test multiple images.

By testing multiple images at once, we quickly learn what the market responds to and can eliminate the ads that do not perform well"You need to give the user a reason to click in the first line of your ad!"

Then, after launching an ad or ad set, we give the ad(s) three days before we decide to shut it down or keep it.

Historically, we have seen it take three days for ads to ramp up and gain enough conversions for Facebook’s algorithm to take hold.

Now, if the campaign takes off right out of the gate and we have lots of data to assess in the first 48 hours, we can make some early calls as to what is working and what is not.

To determine if an ad is worth keeping, we look at three main categories:

  • Results to cost
  • Link click-through rate (LCTR)
  • Positive and negative feedback

The cost per result is always relative to our objective at the time, while we look for a LCTR of 1% or higher.

Throughout the campaign, we keep a close eye on the positive and negative feedback the ad is getting.

If the ad or ad set sits at a high negative and low positive for more than two weeks, the ad will not get a high delivery rate and the account is at risk of being shut down.

And I would advise you do the same:

  • Give your ads three days before determining which to pause and which to scale.
  • Test multiple images at once to quickly see what your market responds to and what doesn’t resonate with them.

Now that you understand how we view Instagram ads, we can dive into how we produced 1000% ROI in 13 days:

The Instagram Paid Traffic Strategy that Generated 1000% ROI

Prior to going over to Instagram, this campaign for Phelan Dental had run via Facebook, so we had data on the copy and images that had been performing well.

We took our top images and best copy and opened up the distribution to Instagram to see what the reaction would be from dentists on the Instagram platform.

We ran two ad sets:

  • One was a Lookalike of those who had registered in the past
  • The other was a stacked job title and national dental associations group

We also excluded all those who had already registered or had already been added to Phelan Dental’s list.

Both ads depicted in the article ran at the same time and within the same ad set for the full 13 days.

For the budget, we selected for Facebook to distribute the daily ad spend automatically between Instagram and Facebook.

Even though we knew from past data what images performed well on Facebook, we still tested multiple images.

We utilized the proven ad copy and images to push users to a landing page that asked them to sign up for a dental training webinar.

Here’s an excerpt of the webinar’s landing page:

Phelan Dental Training Webinar Landing Page

Phelan Dental’s webinar presentation focused heavily on the training and used high-quality cameras and production that, in turn, provided an extremely high value to the attendees.

At the end of the webinar, attendees were made an offer to purchase membership and training programs to learn a new form of dentistry they could incorporate into their practices, which would allow the user to expand their service and make more money.

Those who opted in but didn’t attend the webinar along with attendees who didn’t purchase the offer were placed into long-term follow-up email sequences to nurture them into a sale down the line.

Starting with…

Phelan Dental Email Campaign #1

Followed by…

Phelan Dental Email Campaign #2

And continued with…

Phelan Dental Email Campaign #3

And then finally…

Phelan Dental Email Campaign #4

Which concludes the paid Instagram strategy!

While this paid Instagram strategy did not rely on the Organic Method described earlier, the paid strategy is similar to the Organic Strategy with a few variations…

Using Organic Strategies to Run Paid Instagram Ads

When using Facebooks Ads Manager to place ads in Instagram, you want to keep Step 1 of the Organic Method in mind and define your focus.

Ads that are too broad and try to speak to too many people or pain points at one time will get lost in the shuffle.

By defining a clear focus of who you want to attract and delivering a concise message, you capture the attention of those who could benefit from your offer the most.

Then, just like you want a CTA in your Instagram bio, you also need to have a CTA in your ads because the CTA gives users direction, which is critical to get them to take the next step.

Your CTA can be as simple as…

  • “Get your…”
  • “Register now”
  • “Claim yours today!”

A majority of ads today miss the CTA altogether and don’t give the user the next step.

If you want them to take action, you need to tell them what action to take. "Engagement with brands on Instagram is 10 times higher than Facebook." ~Kim Walsh-Phillips

With your Instagram ads, instead of identifying hashtags, you want to identify targeting groups.

Jump into Ads Manager and start searching out targeting groups relative to who you want to target. You can look for job titles, behaviors, and interests, etc.

As I said earlier, for Phelan Dental’s ads, we stacked dentist job titles and national associations together to create a targeting audience.

And keep in mind with your Instagram ads, much like Steps 4 and 5 from the Organic Strategy, it’s about staying in front of those who did not buy and building more trust over time.

At a minimum, it can take 5-7 touch points after an initial interaction with a user to get them to commit to a purchase.

Also, the higher your price point is, the longer your follow up and nurture series up will need to be.

With the Five-Step Organic Instagram Strategy and the Paid Instagram Strategy, you are now armed with proven Instagram marketing strategies that you can put to use — both organically and paid — to generate leads and move people through your sales funnel and towards a conversion.

Use this as inspiration for your business and see how Instagram can drive sales at your company.

(NOTE: Are you ready to tap into Instagram’s booming network of 600 million viable customers? Get Kim Walsh-Phillips’ Ultimate Guide to Instagram for Business to get the tools you need to drive sales directly from Instagram and grow your business.)

Get the Ultimate Guide to Instagram for Business by Kim Walsh-Phillips

The post How to Make Your Next Sale Through Instagram (Even If You’ve Never Been on the Network Before) appeared first on DigitalMarketer.

How to Ensure Your Facebook Page Complies With Facebook Terms

Do you have a Facebook page for your business? Want to be sure your page isn’t disabled (or worse, shut down) for noncompliance with Facebook’s Terms? In this article, you’ll discover four tips to keep your Facebook page in line with Facebook’s Terms. #1: Name Your Page Accurately Setting up a new Facebook page can […]

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– Your Guide to the Social Media Jungle

Episode 107: 6 Facebook Ad Updates You Need to Know About

Facebook’s a-changin’… again. Stay on the cutting edge and use these six Facebook ad updates to make your targeting even better and improve return on ad spend. Then, listen as Keith shares a quick strategy you can use to increase engagement, repurpose content, and help lower your cost per conversion.


  • The new update that will help you overcome the overcrowding of Facebook advertising.
  • A powerful feature (« that you may not know about) that will let you target the right audience and get the results you want from your Facebook ads.
  • How to differentiate your Facebook page and increase your ROI from paid ads.


Episode 39: 5 Cutting Edge Facebook Ad Updates
Episode 62: 5 Critical Changes to the Facebook Ads Platform
Episode 90: 5 Facebook Ad Updates You Need to Know About

Thanks so much for joining us this week. Have some feedback you’d like to share? Leave us a review on iTunes!

The post Episode 107: 6 Facebook Ad Updates You Need to Know About appeared first on DigitalMarketer.

How to Track Dark Social Traffic in Google Analytics

Are links to your content shared via private messages on social media? Wondering how to identify and measure that traffic? Dark social traffic comes from sources such as Facebook Messenger, Twitter DMs, and even email. Being able to accurately trace this traffic will give you a more complete picture of how your content is performing. […]

This post How to Track Dark Social Traffic in Google Analytics first appeared on .
– Your Guide to the Social Media Jungle

[Case Study] How One Dog Walking App Turns Busy Dog Owners into Customers and Brand Promoters

It’s rare that you see a company leveraging marketing at every step of the Customer Value Journey.

Most brands only leverage marketing at the beginning of the journey… as a way to generate awareness for their product or service.

Or, they implement a marketing campaign at the end of the Customer Value Journey… like a referral program, for example.

The hard truth is that there are 8 steps in every cold prospect’s journey toward becoming a customer and ultimately a promoter of a brand. At DigitalMarketer, we use this roadmap to build a Customer Value Journey for everything we sell:

DigitalMarketer's Customer Value Journey

In fact, we have an entire training that will teach you to create your own Customer Value Journey. You can get that training by clicking here.

(RELATED: The First Step Toward Launching (or Relaunching) a Successful Business is a Simple Fill-In-The-Blank Sentence)

One company that does an amazing job of using all 8 steps of theCustomer Value Journey is Wag!—an on-demand dog walking, dog sitting, and dog boarding company.  They market throughout theCustomer Value Journey like NO ONE I’ve ever seen before… and I had to share with you. 🙂

I want to walk you through exactly what I (and my tiny, furry friend, Larry) have experienced using Wag!… I hope that Wag!’s strategies inspire better marketing everywhere.

No matter what type of business you have, take a page from Wag!’s book to move prospects through theCustomer Value Journey.

Let’s get to it.

Wag’s! Customer Value Journey: Facebook Video Ad to Cold Traffic

I first became aware of Wag! through a video ad on Facebook. This ad does a great job of displaying the benefits of using the app in under ten seconds.

They immediately hit on a pain point in their ad copy, “Ever wonder what your dog gets up to when you’re out?”…

Wag! Facebook ad

And their product becomes the solution… “With Wag! you can see. Install the app today and get your pup’s first walk for free.”

(RELATED: Perpetual Traffic Episode 34: 14 Elements of Persuasive Ad Copy)

The video catches the attention of dog owners and also shows you the features of the product quickly…

  • Your dog will be walked a certain distance in a certain amount of time.
  • You’ll even be able to monitor restroom behavior and if your door was locked!

But not everyone will convert the first time they see your ad. They may be distracted or not in a place where they’re feeling the “pain” that your product or service provides.

So, what do you do when this happens? You retarget them!

(RELATED: How to Use Facebook Advertising Pixels to Create High Converting Ad Campaigns)

Wag’s! Customer Value Journey: Facebook Video Ad (Retargeting)

I didn’t immediately take Wag! up on its offer for a free first walk… but, a few days later, they served this AMAZING retargeting ad to my newsfeed…

The video is adorable. The theme is “We asked our customers what they thought about the Wag! app” and the microphone is passed around to different dogs who are barking.

Wag’s! retargeting Facebook ad is below (and you can check the ad out on Facebook here):

Wag! Facebook retargeting ad

And watch the ad’s awesome video below:

The ad copy hits on other benefits of the product that weren’t mentioned in the first ad: “We make dog ownership easier by connecting you with dog lovers in your community who you can hire on-demand for dog walking, dog sitting, or dog boarding services 7-days a week.”

And because of their retargeting, I was sold. I clicked on the ad and began the sign-up process.

Here’s another retargeting video where they build your confidence that their walkers are safe and friendly (see it on Facebook here).

Another Wag! Facebook retargeting ad

And you can watch the ad’s video here:

(RELATED: The Ultimate Guide to Facebook Video Ads)

Wag! served amazing ads to my newsfeed, but they also made an offer that I couldn’t refuse…

Wag’s! Customer Value Journey: Irresistible Entry Point Offer

Wag! didn’t just tell me to use their product or service – they made it even EASIER by offering the first walk for free. This made it almost impossible to say no and allowed me to get familiar with the service. "This made it almost impossible to say no."

Another thing that helps move customers along the Customer Value Journey – scarcity – and Wag! does a great job at this.

Here’s the screen I saw when I clicked on the ad to go and download the app: 

Wag's! screen to download their app with a countdown timer

I love how they used a countdown timer to increase the urgency of signing up now.

If, for some reason, you went to their website instead of immediately downloading the app, the offer is consistent on their website exit pop-up:

Wag! website exit pop-up

The next step of the journey is one that many overlook…

(NOTE: Seeing something you’re missing? Is your roadmap in place to predictably transform ice-cold prospects into buyers and promoters? Get everything you need in our newest Execution Plan: The Customer Value Journey Execution Plan.)

Learn more about the 8-step roadmap that predictably transforms ice-cold prospects into buyers and promoters of your business.

Wag’s! Customer Value Journey: In-App Upsells

The next day, I decided to give Wag! a try.

The experience was exciting… as you can see below, the app shows you your dog’s walk in real time.

Wag's! app showing your dog's walk in real time

You can see the blue line moving as your dog walks down the street and the dog walker sends a live video. They even mark when a bathroom break happens.

At this point, I’m at the “Excite Stage” of the Customer Value Journey with Wag!

The excite stage of the customer journey

The Excite Stage is one that most businesses forget. The first time someone uses your product or service, they should IMMEDIATELY feel relief from their pain point and have a moment of excitement.

This will help continue them down their journey with your brand. "They should immediately feel relief from their pain point and have a moment of excitement."

And that’s when Wag! really hit the nail on the head.

About half way through the walk, the yellow “EXTEND NOW” button popped up. The free walk had originally been for 30 minutes… but now, for 50% off, I could extend the walk 30 more minutes.

Wag! "Extend Now" Upsell

This was a brilliant upsell… and trained me to become familiar with this button inside of the app. 🙂

But they weren’t done with the Excite Stage…

Wag’s! Customer Value Journey: Continuing to Excite the End User

After the walk was complete, I received an actual report card inside of the app.

The report card looks exactly like the one I saw in the first Facebook ad, which maintained ad scent. I was able to see how long he walked, if any bathroom breaks were taken, and that my door was locked at home.

Wag! report card of the walk

The walker even wrote a description of the walk, explaining that Larry, my dog, wanted to come home after a bit of walking and that Larry got a treat! This report card really made the purchase feel rewarding and made me want to request another walk soon.

And it also had me moving through the Customer Value Journey…

Wag’s! Customer Value Journey: Refer a Friend with Ease

Wag! made their app very interactive. As you can see below, there are different filters that I could place over Larry’s photo:

Filters you can use in the Wag! app

After you select your filter, Wag! gives you the option to share the photo.

Just one “purchase” in with Wag! and they’re already getting me to refer their services to my friends… and making it fun and natural!

You can share the photo to social networks and/or text the photo to your friends. Here’s the pre-written tweet Wag! creates for you:

Pre-written Wag! tweet you can share

And here’s the text I sent to one of my friends about Wag!…

Wag! text I sent to a friend

Wag! pre-populated the text message that you see above.

They not only made my friend aware of their service, they also offered them an entire week of free walks. This is an even MORE desirable offer than one free week, which helps to get new blood into Wag’s! Customer Value Journey.

Next, let’s examine how Wag! increases the lifetime value of a customer…

Wag’s! Customer Value Journey: Increase Lifetime Value

After I referred a friend, Wag! then asked if I wanted to plan my walks for the week.

Book a week of walks with Wag!

If you press the “OK” button, you’re taken to a screen where you can select the day of the week and time that you’d like a walker to come.

You can visit the app anytime to request a walk “ASAP,” but this scheduling feature makes it easy for Wag! to increase your lifetime value… and keeps the walkers coming!

But, that’s not the only way that Wag! gets you to come back for more…

Wag’s! Customer Value Journey: Promotional Emails

Below is a promotional email I received from Wag! this summer.

Wag! promotional email with a contest to win Wag! all summer

Not only is the email image-based and eye-catching… the offer is amazing.

Once again Wag! makes an offer I can’t refuse. Book a walk today for a chance to win Wag! all summer? Heck yeah!

Unfortunately, I didn’t win, but hats off to Wag! for this brilliant contest.

As expected, Wag! didn’t stop its marketing efforts there…

Wag’s! Customer Value Journey: Retargeting Hot Traffic

A few weeks later, I saw this ad in my news feed…

Retargeting hot traffic (people who have purchased from you in the past) is a very underutilized activity even though it usually produces the highest return on ad spend.

"They should immediately feel relief from their pain point and have a moment of excitement."Wag! retargeted me with another great offer: To purchase Wag! credit packages to get up to 20% off on walks.

But they didn’t just retarget to remind me that they existed. They gave me a reason to purchase… further increasing my customer value.

The key takeaway: retarget your buyers to get them to keep buyin’!

Which leads us to our final step…

Wag’s! Customer Value Journey: Send Physical Goods

To top it all off, Wag! sent Larry and me a swag bag in the mail. This came around the tenth walk I’d requested.

Wag! swag bag I received

The key here is, with the swag bag, they’d turned me into a promoter of the brand and made me feel appreciated as a customer.

There’s no doubt I will continue using Wag! and referring my dog-loving friends.

Hats off to this company for its excellent marketing at every step of the Customer Value Journey.

Use the above strategies from Wag! to seamlessly move your leads and customers through your Customer Value Journey.

(NOTE: Seeing something you’re missing? Is your roadmap in place to predictably transform ice-cold prospects into buyers and promoters? Get everything you need in our newest Execution Plan: The Customer Value Journey Execution Plan.)

Learn more about the 8-step roadmap that predictably transforms ice-cold prospects into buyers and promoters of your business.

The post [Case Study] How One Dog Walking App Turns Busy Dog Owners into Customers and Brand Promoters appeared first on DigitalMarketer.

Messenger Chatbots: How to Get Started

Wondering if Messenger chatbots are right for your business? Want to know how to build your own chatbot? To explore why and how to create Facebook Messenger chatbots, I interview Ben Beck. More About This Show The Social Media Marketing podcast is an on-demand talk radio show from Social Media Examiner. It’s designed to help […]

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– Your Guide to the Social Media Jungle

9 Direct Response Strategies You Should Be Using to Increase Engagement and Sales

Looking to increase your sales?

Well then, it follows that increased engagement be a priority of yours, too. And the best way to increase engagement is to straightforwardly ask for it, direct response style.

"The best way to increase engagement is to straitforwardly ask for it, direct response style." ~Julie BoswellIf you’re like most digital marketers, you spend a lot of time and effort and money on the upfront interaction and then waste it by not circling back around at every opportunity.

Let’s change that. 🙂

The idea is to complete “a relationship circle” every chance you get.

Don’t just go for a linear or one-time interaction.

Get more engagement and further the relationship with every interaction. When you do that, you’ll EXPAND your reach and impact and get more sales at the same time.

So, here are nine direct response strategies to use to increase engagement and sales that you might be missing out on.

If you’ve already got the first few down, keep reading. Make sure you can say, “Yes, I’m doing that,” to all of these actions…

Direct Response Strategy #1: Tell Your Website Visitors to Do Something on EVERY Single Page

From your Home Page to your About Us Page, every page is an opportunity for engagement.

Every page is an opportunity for engagement.Take advantage of that and lead prospects exactly where you want them to go next with a call-to-action (CTA) on EACH of those pages.


Aside from the obvious “maximize the traffic that comes to your website,” you want to begin to train your audience to take the instructions you give them.

If you never ask your audience to do anything, they’re going to react with surprise when you ask them to pull out their wallet.

But if you ask them to engage with you every time you deliver content or information to them, then another ask is not unusual.

In fact, they’ll begin to EXPECT that your relationship is Give and Take, rather than them taking without giving back to you in some way.

Take the About Us Page for example. It’s often underutilized for this purpose.

Take a look at how Jeff Walker does it. There are not one but TWO opt-in opportunities at the top of his About Page:

Jeff Walker About Us Page

Then, at the very end of all the copy on this page, he triggers more engagement from the reader by leading them to his blog. And of course, there’s one more opt-in opportunity as well:

Jeff Walker About Us Page

Not only do you want to make an offer on all of your pages, you should…

Direct Response Strategy #2: Make an Offer with EVERY Interaction

Every handshake, every blog post, every podcast appearance – even if the offer is simply to “learn more about this at _____.”

"You're training your audience that their interactions with you are Give and Take."You do this for the same reason that you have a CTA on every page of your website: You’re training your audience that their interactions with you are Give and Take.

Here’s an email from famous podcaster John Lee Dumas. He sent this email out to his list most likely with the intention of offering inspiration and staying in touch with them on a regular schedule.

The email is short, sweet, and to the point. It offers up a “food for thought” type of inspirational message and that’s it. But he doesn’t just let it end there.

There’s a P.S. reminding his audience about an affiliate offer:

John Lee Dumas Email

Now, JLD isn’t selling anything here – he’s got a free video series that he’s promoting as an affiliate. But he’s still asking his list to opt-in and give their contact information in exchange for more content.

Another example?

Amazon sends confirmation emails with suggested upsells no matter what they’re confirming.

In the case below, my business partner ordered some supplies, and Amazon helpfully showed her related items in the shipping confirmation. 

Amazon Shipping Confirmation cross-sell

Amazon knows that every communication is an opportunity to increase the customer’s purchase total.

Which leads us to Strategy Number 3…

Direct Response Strategy #3: Use the Sidebar or Breaks on Your Blog to Make Offers

Neil Patel uses the sidebar well with a simple opt-in to get readers on his list.

Neil Patel Blog Sidebar Opt-In

Notice how you don’t have to relate the offer to the post (although you could).

The point is to simply capitalize on the attention that page is getting. The opt-ins he’ll get here will go through his funnel – when otherwise, they would have simply left without engaging.

As you’ve probably noticed, DigitalMarketer uses IN-LINE advertising to engage with their readers and increase response.

In the example below, they’ve placed a relevant ad for a certification that matches the content of the blog post.

DigitalMarketer Blog CTA

This allows them to monetize the traffic they’re already getting AND maximize that profit by creating relevant offers.

The next strategy comes from a source you can bring with you at all times…

Direct Response Strategy #4: Put a Response Mechanism on Your Business Card

Don’t only put your URL, phone number, or email address on your business card. Include an actual offer and a URL to get the offer!

We all go to events, right?

There’s Traffic & Conversion, Content & Commerce, Dell World, F8, INBOUND and a whole host of other events that are full of your potential…

  • Clients
  • Affiliates
  • JVs
  • Strategic connections
  • Mentors/mentees

Use your business card to make an offer!

There is no reason you can’t drive traffic to your Lead Magnet on a business card.

Parthiv Shah, a DigitalMarketer Certified Partner, does this with his book – offering a FREE copy on the back of his business card:

Parthiv Shah Business Card

And, I do the same thing on the reverse of my business card:

Julie Boswell Business Card

A quick headline and a URL to get your offer. Now, that’s using business card real estate wisely. 🙂

(NOTE: Before you can start selling to your audience, you need to know who your ideal customer is, where they are, and what they will buy. Download our proven Customer Avatar Worksheet now and get clear on who you’re selling to.)

Get DigitalMarketer's Customer Avatar Worksheet

Next, make sure you…

Direct Response Strategy #5: Put a CTA on Your Signs

If you exhibit at a tradeshow or conference, put a CTA on every single one of your marketing materials.

You never know who is going to be walking past your location, not engaging with you directly, but still interested in what you have to say.

Check out the display below:

Conference display with signs that have a CTA

Nothing fancy or high tech about what he’s doing, but this guy is getting it done with a very clear CTA.

You might not be able to read his fine print, but you can see the phone number!

Do your signs have a clear CTA? A phone number? A URL? Every one of them?

Or, like the example below shows, you can use your signs to capture lead information.

Conference display with signs to capture lead information

Once someone engages in conversation with you, encourage them to give you their information, so you can follow up with them later.

The example above used a QR code to take passers-by to a landing page (and also provided the URL for people without a barcode scanner – smart!), so they could collect their information.

At my booth at Content & Commerce 2016, I did the same thing and created a sign to advertise my Lead Magnet for people who didn’t stop and have a conversation with us.

Julie Boswell Content & Commerce Summit 2016 sign

The service we used to make this happen is Textedly and starts at a whopping $10/month.

If you exhibit regularly, especially at high traffic events like Traffic & Conversion or Content & Commerce, it makes sense to have something like this in place to capture all the passers-by who don’t have time to stop and talk to you.

While we’re on the subject of events, let’s talk about a direct response strategy you can use from the stage…

Direct Response Strategy #6: Give Them Multiple Ways to Connect with You

If you speak in front of a crowd and you’re NOT allowed to pitch, close by inviting the audience members to meet you at the restaurant, bar, or hallway on a break to ask their questions.

In fact, whether or not you’re pitching, give your audience multiple ways to connect with you.

This is a strategy we use in direct response marketing all the time – multiple response mechanisms. We don’t just provide a phone number to call; we provide…

  • An email address
  • A physical address
  • A URL
  • A fax number

Don’t confuse this with giving multiple CTAs. There is ONE CTA: Get in touch with me. You’re just giving them multiple ways to do that.

"Inviting them to meet with you adds that personal touch that can turn leads who are on the fence into buyers." ~Julie BoswellWhen you’re on a stage, giving people multiple ways to connect with you increases the likelihood that they will connect at all.

After all, if they’re not quite ready to buy your product but want to talk to you about done-for-you services or an affiliate opportunity, simply handing them an order form isn’t enough to get that job done.

And inviting them to meet with you adds that personal touch that can turn leads who are on the fence into buyers.

Next, what are you doing to…

Direct Response Strategy #7: Get Their Contact Info the First Time

Every brand opportunity you go for should also include a way to capture the traffic and further the relationship, even if the prospects don’t convert immediately.

To do this, drive people to a URL that will require an email capture before visitors get what they came for.

For instance, you could create a retargeting pixel to capture the traffic from your website and remarket to them on Facebook – driving that traffic to a Lead Magnet which then also gets you their email address. And now you can market to them where they are – their inbox and News Feed.

Why is this important? "The warmer the lead, the closer you are to the sale."

When someone visits your website or sees your signage for the first time, they’re cold traffic. They don’t know anything about you and they inherently don’t trust you.

But, when they repeatedly see you in their News Feed and get content from you in their inbox, they’ve begun to warm up.

The warmer the lead, the closer you are to the sale. 

But warming up your lead takes time.

Ethical Nag reminds us of marketing expert Dr. Jeffery Lant’s Rule of Seven: You must contact your buyers a minimum of seven times in an 18-month period for them to remember you.

That’s seven touches (interactions) before someone is ready to buy from you. In some instances, it takes a lot more.

And if you don’t capture the traffic through retargeting or gather their contact information on Interaction #1, you’ll NEVER get to Interaction #7.

One field that is brutally competitive and requires a great deal of trust is real estate.

This agent created a response mechanism where the passerby can request more information on the listing – which then captures their information and she has a potential buyer lead, starting her first interaction with the person.

Realtor Sign that captures leads' information

Next, we’ll move onto why email isn’t the only mail you should be sending…

Direct Response Strategy #8: Use Direct Mail

No matter how “digital” your business is, if you’ve got buyers, you’ve got addresses.

"No matter how 'digital' your business is, if you've buyers, you've got addresses."And while your customers may be used to you contacting them online, it’s proven that using multi-media touches increases response.

So, use direct mail to upsell and cross-sell your existing customers into other programs and offers.

They’ve already shown you that they’ll buy from you, perhaps it’s time to make the relationship more intimate and show up in their mailboxes and not just in their inboxes or on their News Feed.

Another benefit to direct mail: Mailboxes are sitting empty.

Sometimes I check my mail and have two or three pieces of mail for the entire day. But my email inbox? That’s another story entirely. 🙂

If your prospects are like most, they’re receiving 121 emails each day. Because your email is competing with hundreds of other messages per day, your email has a greater chance of getting lost in the shuffle – and the same goes for Facebook.

But you can capitalize on fewer direct mails being sent daily, giving your message a better chance to stand out and resonate with your audience.

Here’s an example of a direct mail that you should be able to work into your business.

This is a sales letter I wrote for my very first private client, the famous personal development coach, Dani Johnson.

I can’t believe I’m showing this as I was a total rookie when I wrote this. 🙂

But, this strategy is a great example for you hardcore digital folks out there who would never dream of going offline.

Dani sent this sales letter as a ride-along piece inside the package that delivered a physical product:

Julie Boswell's direct mail example

Which brings us to our final direct response strategy…

Direct Response Strategy #9: Focus on Your Product’s Benefits, Not its Features

This is especially important for all you listing products on Amazon who think this type of direct response copy doesn’t apply to you.

Go beyond the product specs in your product descriptions and bullets, and include within the copy what’s in it for them. Tell them why they should care about what’s included.

Communicate how this will take them from their Before state – where they are unhappy, dissatisfied, or lacking something in some way – to their After state – where their life has changed and improved with the use of your product.

The Before and After State

(RELATED: Customer Value Optimization: How to Build an Unstoppable Business)

Here’s an excerpt of copy I recently wrote for a weight loss product that shows how you can transform your bullet list into a BENEFIT list …

Weight loss product bullet list example

Essentially, your job is to make sure that every benefit of what you offer is fully explained.

Keep Homer Simpson in mind as you do this:

  • He gets very confused and can’t quite figure things out on his own.
  • He’s a good guy, so DON’T talk down to him.
  • But DO explain it all very clearly to him. He won’t think of it on his own.

This is how you have to approach communication with your market. Assume nothing. Spell it all out. "Your job is to make sure that every benefit of what you offer is fully explained."

With all of this in mind, I encourage you to audit your websites and your funnels to clean house on any erroneous copy that’s not benefit-driven.

(RELATED: How to Write Sales Copy Like a Pro (Even if You’re a Rookie))

While you’re at it, take a look at your signage, your business cards, how you handle things from the stage, and how you handle your relationships in general.

Are your prospect and customer interactions circular or linear?

Go back through this list and inject some direct response mojo into your marketing using direct response strategies wherever possible.

Do that work now to complete the circle and ever interaction you have with your market will have a MUCH BETTER chance of growing your business.

(NOTE: Before you can start selling to your audience, you need to know who your ideal customer is, where they are, and what they will buy. Download our proven Customer Avatar Worksheet now and get clear on who you’re selling to.)

Get DigitalMarketer's Customer Avatar Worksheet

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