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PSPinc will help your business thrive by providing for all of your technology needs. We offer a wide array of products, including Web & Email Hosting, Website Development, Email Marketing and Data Storage Solutions. Visit pspinc.com to learn more.

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Set your Social Media Expectations

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Set your Social Media Expectat...
Most likely your company’s social media sites are more interactive than your website. People react, comment, share, and use social media to approve, disapprove or voice their concerns. That was the point of Web 2.0 - the birth of our dynamic, two-way websites where users are empowered to participate. You can read more in my previous blog about SNS and Web 2.0.

So with all that dynamic activity available to you via social media, how do you measure its performance? First, you need to define your goals and objectives. You can’t evaluate your company’s performance on social media without having an objective in place. Without a goal to reach, your evaluations are hollow.

If you do have goals and objectives set for social media, you will be ready for my follow-up blog articles. If you have not set them, continue reading and allow me to guide you toward putting them in place so your posts on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter become more meaningful.

Let’s talk about goals and how you want social media to benefit your business.

First, think about how you engage with your customers now. What do you want them to perceive? What is the messaging you currently use to brand your company? Now apply the same thought to your social media communication as you set your goals.

Here are some samples of what a social media goal might look like:

- Get our restaurant reviewed by customers in order to create buzz marketing.

- Be an expert advisor on financial analysis for individuals ready to retire.

- Be the advocate on a new technology.


Once you have your goals, let’s put into place some realistic objectives. Your objectives are the means for you to reach your goals; they have to be more specific and measurable.

To get people to talk about the restaurant and create a buzz around it, your objective might be getting people to write reviews. How many reviews would you like to have? Do you have a specific social media outlet in which you prefer to get reviews? How many reviews do you think can you gain in 1 month, 2 months, or 3 months? What is your strategy, as far as, how will you ask for reviews from your customers?

To show off your financial advisor expertise on social media, what kind of content should you create and share? (Perhaps you should follow some other pages that give excellent data for you to share.) How many likes or shares would you like to get for each post? How many new followers would you like to get in a month?

Defining your goals and objectives will bring some depth to your social media performance, and give you something to work for, so make sure you start there first.
#PSPinc #Blog #OnlineMarketing #SmallBusiness #SocialMedia #Facebook #Twitter #LinkedIn #Google

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More Website Analytics Terms Defined

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More Website Analytics Terms...
In last week’s blog about website analytics, we talked about visitors, page views, duration of stay and bounce rates. Let’s continue that conversation today with more about the language of website analytics:

Sessions:

This is a more comprehensive duration of stay statistic. For example, a visitor comes to your site, spends 5 minutes there, and views 3 pages. The same person comes back the next day, spends 2 minutes there, and views 6 pages. You had 2 sessions from the same person and the total session time was 7 minutes.

Language:

This is somewhat obvious; it indicates the country and language visitors use. Many of the statistics tools, including Google Analytics, use the ISO standard codes to display language. For example, English speaking U.S. visitors will show “en-us,” whereas English speaking British visitors will show as “en-gb.” You can find these combinations on Google. This information helps you understand where your visitors are coming from so you can adjust your content accordingly, or adjust your marketing strategy to target a certain demographic.

Referrers:

This tells you the source of your traffic. It is important to know how people found your site, and the websites that “referred” them there. When people type in your website domain address, they get “direct” access to your site, but if they came from another site, maybe from your blog, or from Facebook, these are called “referrer” sites. In Google Analytics, referrer information is stored in a section called “Acquisitions.” Acquisitions will show you how you acquired these visitors to your site.

There are other stats you might find interesting as well, one which shows the browsers people use, such as Internet Explorer, Google Chrome or Firefox. Another stat shows you which devices people use, such as a PC, smartphone or tablet. Knowing the devices could prove helpful when you’re considering how to optimize your website design for easy viewing across all devices.

In closing, remember it’s very important to understand the 5 W’s of your online business so you can plan your marketing accordingly. The 5 W’s include the who, what, when, where and why. Who is your target audience, what are they looking for and what is their behavior on your site, when are they visiting your site, where are they coming from, and why would they buy from you over others? Having this information, from web analytics, will help you make better informed decisions so your business can thrive.
#PSPinc #Blog #OnlineMarketing #SmallBusiness #GoogleAnalytics #WebAnalytics #WebTools

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Important Web Analytics Terms - Cont.

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Important Web Analytics Terms...
In last week’s blog about website analytics, we talked about visitors, page views, duration of stay and bounce rates. Let’s continue that conversation today with more about the language of website analytics:

Sessions:

This is a more comprehensive duration of stay statistic. For example, a visitor comes to your site, spends 5 minutes there, and views 3 pages. The same person comes back the next day, spends 2 minutes there, and views 6 pages. You had 2 sessions from the same person and the total session time was 7 minutes.

Language:

This is somewhat obvious; it indicates the country and language visitors use. Many of the statistics tools, including Google Analytics, use the ISO standard codes to display language. For example, English speaking U.S. visitors will show “en-us,” whereas English speaking British visitors will show as “en-gb.” You can find these combinations on Google. This information helps you understand where your visitors are coming from so you can adjust your content accordingly, or adjust your marketing strategy to target a certain demographic.

Referrers:

This tells you the source of your traffic. It is important to know how people found your site, and the websites that “referred” them there. When people type in your website domain address, they get “direct” access to your site, but if they came from another site, maybe from your blog, or from Facebook, these are called “referrer” sites. In Google Analytics, referrer information is stored in a section called “Acquisitions.” Acquisitions will show you how you acquired these visitors to your site.

There are other stats you might find interesting as well, one which shows the browsers people use, such as Internet Explorer, Google Chrome or Firefox. Another stat shows you which devices people use, such as a PC, smartphone or tablet. Knowing the devices could prove helpful when you’re considering how to optimize your website design for easy viewing across all devices.

In closing, remember it’s very important to understand the 5 W’s of your online business so you can plan your marketing accordingly. The 5 W’s include the who, what, when, where and why. Who is your target audience, what are they looking for and what is their behavior on your site, when are they visiting your site, where are they coming from, and why would they buy from you over others? Having this information, from web analytics, will help you make better informed decisions so your business can thrive.
#PSPinc #Blog #OnlineMarketing #SmallBusiness #GoogleAnalytics #WebAnalytics #WebTools

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UW 2016 Impact Awards Dinner

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UW 2016 Impact Awards UW 2016 Impact Awards Lenny Wilkens and PSPinc cus... Lenny Wilkens and PSPinc customer
Last night, PSPinc joined the University of Washington Foster School of Business Consulting and Business Development Center for their 2016 Impact Awards.

The Consulting and Business Development Center takes business education out of the classroom and puts it to work in communities across Washington. We had a great time at the event last night and we are proud to have helped sponsor it.
#blog

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Understanding your Website Traffic - The Basics

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Understanding your Website Tra...
December is a good month to review your company’s performance so you can plan ahead for the coming year. That should also include having a good understanding of your online performance. In the coming blogs for December, I’ll introduce you to the information and tools that can help you collect and assess your website traffic.

Oftentimes, we measure our website performance from the number of purchases, sign ups, or phone calls from it. But what if your site can improve those numbers by tweaking some content? In order to do that, it would certainly help to understand how people are coming to your website, from where, and how they behave once they get there. Is your traffic coming from social media sites like Facebook? Or from Google searches? How long do people typically stay on your website? What are their click habits once they’ve landed on your site? What pages do they gravitate to, or rarely click on?

Many web hosting companies, including PSPinc, provide basic web statistics for your website. If you don’t have access to that information, it may be time to switch your hosting company, or take the matter into your own hands. The most commonly used tool for tracking website analytics is called Google Analytics, in which a tag will be generated for you to embed within your homepage source code.

Many web analytics tools such as Google Analytics use the same basic terms, which you should know when it comes to assessing your company’s web performance:

Site visitors:

This is how many people landed on your website. Typically stats indicate the “total visitors” and “unique visitors” for a day, a week, or a month.

Page views:

This is how many pages people saw on your site. If 2 people visited your site, one saw 2 pages and the other saw 5 pages, your stats should reflect 2 visitors to your site with a total of 7 page views.

Duration of stay:

This is how long people are browsing your site, which is the duration of their stay. It is said that people generally decide in less than 30 seconds to stay on a web page, or navigate elsewhere. So if your website doesn’t give a great first impression when someone lands on it, you may be losing potential customers.

Bounce rates:

This indicates how often people are leaving from a specific web page. For example, if there are 10 visitors to a page, and 3 of them left from that page to go to another website, your bounce rate for that page is 30%. If you have a high bounce rate on certain pages, you should analyze why people are leaving and what can be improved. Perhaps you need a call to action or a more user-friendly shopping cart function, as an example.
#PSPinc #Blog #OnlineMarketing #SmallBusiness #GoogleAnalytics #WebAnalytics #WebTools

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4 Ways to Measure your Social Media Performance

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4 Ways to Measure your Socia...
Hopefully by now you’ve set up your business’ social media accounts and started engaging customers. The next thing you need to do is measure your performance so you can adjust your strategy accordingly. Like all other online marketing strategies in business, social media requires your constant attention and fine tuning to be an effective marketing tool. In this conclusion to our social media for business series, we will explain how to measure the success of your social media strategies using four basic measurement metrics.

1) Exposure. How many people saw your posts? There are different ways to get that information depending on the media, but exposure is measured by number of visits, views, followers, or fans. Many of the social media sites today provide the “insights” or analytics tools so you can compare various posts to each other and see which ones performed better than others.

2) Engagement. How did people behaved after they saw your articles? Did they share it, click to read more, like the post, or even add a comment? This is the kind of engagement you should look for analyzing what you post. When someone publishes a review on your social media, that’s another way users behave and it counts as an engagement.

3) Influence. Are you seeing users become brand evangelists for your company? These are people who have gone a step further to influence purchasing decisions from your company by posting positive reviews on social media, or perhaps they “share” one of your posts and recommend you to everyone who follows them. Other interested customers may respond to those reviews or recommendations by purchasing the product or service, thus creating the perfect social media cycle for your business. You can’t ask for a better scenario than others networking on your behalf and singing your praises.

4) Action. When someone takes the next step to inquire about your business online or request a price quote, or even purchase your products and services, that’s considered an action. This metric may not be easily measured depending on your business model because some customers may inquire offline, such as walking into the store or calling on the phone. That’s why it’s a good idea to train your team to ask “Where did you hear about us?” every time a potential customer asks about your business.

Measuring your social media performance is not your end goal, but rather a way to learn more about what engages people and what doesn’t. It can tell you a lot about your business too, through the eyes of the customer. Use the information you collect from your social media analysis to adjust your strategy, your campaigns, and your message accordingly. Learning from your customers and garnering their feedback is crucial to the success of your business and social media is a great platform to get that information.
#PSPinc #Blog #OnlineMarketing #SmallBusiness #SocialMedia #Facebook #Twitter #LinkedIn #Google

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Cyber Monday Deal from PSPinc!

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Cyber Monday Deal from PSPi...
Don't miss out on our Cyber Monday hosting deal!

Get our best deal on Dreamersi hosting. This Monday only, November 28th, be one of the first 28 to sign up and receive one year of hosting for $28. (Valued at $250)

Visit our special page to sign up at http://www.dreamersi.com/cyber-monday-2016.php
#PSPinc #Blog #OnlineMarketing #SmallBusiness

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How to Manage your Company's User Reviews

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How to Manage your Company...
When I look at online reviews, first I check out the average rating (typically up to 5 stars). Then I look for the volume of the reviews, and finally I read a mix of the worst and best reviews. Usually when a company gives a sincere response to someone who’s given them a bad review, it turns the negative experience into a positive. For me, it’s very important how a company handles a bad situation; it tells me a lot about their customer service commitment.

Today, more than 90% of consumers now read online reviews, with the average star rating the number one factor used by consumers to judge a business. (Source: vendasta.com) So even if you would prefer customers not partake in this practice, you have no choice but to deal with it, negative or positive outcome. Besides, taking online reviews seriously is a great way for companies to quality control their products and services.

Check out these tips for managing customer reviews online:

1) Set up an appropriate online presence to get ready for customer reviews, such as Google+, Facebook or Yelp. By setting it up yourself and making it easy for customers to find you, you are in control of your own destiny.

2) When you get good feedback from customers in person or over email, thank them and ask if they would write a good review for you online. Happy customers are the best source of good reviews and you don’t want to miss the opportunity to capture their positive feedback.

3) Keep monitoring reviews on a regular basis. Receiving reviews is one thing, but it is just as important to keep checking in regularly so you can respond to them. It will show your commitment to your followers and customers on social media.

4) Respond fast to negative reviews. You have a limited window of opportunity to turn a negative review into positive one. Your prompt (and hopefully good and sincere) response will show your commitment to your customers!

5) Consistency is key. Make sure your brand is represented the same across all social media sites. You can’t say one thing here and another over there. If you are going to ask your employees to respond to reviews, you should have a standard and policy in place so they respond in the same (controlled) way across the board.

Don’t be afraid of customer reviews; instead embrace the positive reputation they can bring to your company!
#PSPinc #Blog #OnlineMarketing #SmallBusiness #SocialMedia #BusinessReviews #BusinessRatings

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Happy Thanksgiving!

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Happy Thanksgiving!
Happy Thanksgiving from all of us at PSPINC! Wishing a fun and safe weekend for all our customers and friends.
#blog #thanksgiving

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How to Use Snapchat and Instagram for Business

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How to Use Snapchat and Inst...
When I first heard about Snapchat, it sounded like a social network for teenagers. I assumed this photo messenger service was for kids and not fit for business purposes. I was wrong. Snapchat can be another useful platform for marketing your products and services creatively, especially if your target audience is also on Snapchat. A similar network is Instagram. Both are platforms where you can share images and videos with friends and followers.

The demographic for Snapchat and Instagram are similar yet different: Snapchat has over 100 million users and growing, with more than 50% of them over the age of 25. 77% of the users are said to be college students, and there are more women than men, 70% vs. 30%. Instagram has 400 million users, only 25% of them are U.S. domestic, and it is said to be the second most engaged social network after Facebook today. 90% of users are younger than 35 years of age.

On Snapchat you can send a “snap” which is a particular photo or video to one or more friends and it will disappear after a maximum 10 seconds once it’s viewed. You can also opt to send a Snapchat “story” which broadcasts a collection of snaps to all of your followers for the duration of 24 hours. Basically, your graphic or video snaps are on loop for a day, and your followers can view them as often as they want in that period of time.

For business purposes, you can Snapchat company news and sneak previews of your products and services, and engage users that way. It can work in your favor to use this time-sensitive social media. For example, you can take advantage of short-lived snaps and stories when there is a time limit to a marketing campaign. And it creates a sense of urgency for followers to act much more quickly.

Alternatively, Instagram photos and videos are meant to be permanently online. You can include hashtags that categorize your posts and makes them eligible to be found by a universal search of that tag. You can cleverly start your own hashtag campaigns and get users to participate in the buzz around your hashtag in order to draw in more loyal followers. It’s an easy and creative marketing strategy. As a bonus, people also appreciate how the filters on Instagram improve the light and quality of their photos, making them appear more professional than they are.

If you have products or services that are visually marketable, you can show them off to followers on Snapchat or Instagram with photos, graphics, coupons, tutorials, re-shared customer photos/reviews, and more. Even if you are a service-oriented company, you can find visual ways to show what you do by uploading tutorials and informational videos or graphics for your follower base (i.e. customers).

With Snapchat or Instagram, my best advice is to learn what the users are like, learn their interests and see what’s popular, search hashtags, and create a visual strategy that appeals to your customer demographic in those social media outlets. And don’t forget to stay with your story, meaning don’t veer from keeping your posts business related if it’s a business social media account.
#PSPinc #Blog #OnlineMarketing #SmallBusiness #SocialMedia #Snapchat #Instagram

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