Organic vs. Paid Social Media

Young people sitting on stairs using smartphones for organic and paid social media

Weighing up the options between paid and organic social media? Not sure where to start? We’ll save you some legwork: you’ll find everything you need to know in this expert guide.

As a digital marketing apprentice, social media implementation is crucial. For instance, you’ll need to show that you have a variety of skills and the ability to run digital campaigns across different social media platforms. In this guide we’ve outlined the main differences between organic and paid social media, as well as including some examples to help you understand better. We’ve also chucked in some useful links to help get you started to becoming a social media wizard!

The key to social media is being social

Eli Fennell

What is Organic Social Media?

Organic social media refers to the free content that all users, including business and brands, share with each other on feeds. For example, this could include posts, photos, videos, memes and stories.

As a brand, when you post organically to your account, you can expect that people who see it are:

  • A percentage of your followers (also known as organic reach)
  • Your follower’s followers
  • People following any hashtags you use

Brands use organic social to:

  • Establish their personality and voice
  • Build relationships through informative, entertaining or inspiring content
  • Engage customers at every stage of the customer life cycle journey

Example of typical organic content from a business:

Pantone leveraging user-generated content

Pantone excels at the strategic use of user-generated content to build a stunning feed. For example, the brand uses aesthetically pleasing, high quality content to grab the audiences attention. Additionally, the short, punny copy doesn’t detract from the image.

What is Paid Social Media?

Paid social media involves brands paying money to social networks such as Facebook and Instagram to have their content shared with specific audiences. Paid social posts will show up in the feeds of whichever audience you decide to target and can be filtered by demographics, likes, interests and more.

Cost-per-click (CPC) is one of the most common methods of charging for this type of promotion.

Businesses and organisations use paid promotion on social media to:

  • Raise brand awareness and attract new followers
  • Promote new deals, content, events
  • Generate leads
  • Drive conversions

Example of typical paid content from a business:

example of paid social media
Moz stands out with colourful ad creative

Similarly to the the organic social example, Moz uses bright colours to stand out in the audience’s feed. It grabs the reader’s attention with bold colour choices. However, this ad is targeted to people who like marketing and marketing agencies, so a case study link makes sense here. Moreover, the strong, minimal copy gets the point across quickly and efficiently.

While paid social and organic social vary in their scope it is useful to know the benefits and drawbacks of each.

The verdict on Organic vs. Paid Social Media

Both organic and paid social media suit different businesses with different priorities in different situations. If your business doesn’t have the budget to implement a paid social media strategy, then try focusing on organic social media. Write thoughtful content and actively engage with your customers online. However, if your business has a sizeable marketing budget, prioritise your paid social media efforts to immediately spread brand awareness and draw specific audiences to your profile.

Ideally, you will be able to find a way to incorporate both methods into your overall social media strategy to improve your online presence. To take your social media marketing skills to the next level, take a look at more of our digital marketing blogs to become a social media pro!

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Digital Marketing Apprentice: Video Content

Person using a professional camera to create content

If you’re a digital marketing apprentice you may want to add video content to your skills to use! We are going to cover why video content is going to be the future of marketing and how you can start to apply it to your work as a level 3 digital marketing apprentice!

Why Video Content Is Key As a Digital Marketing Apprentice

In todays world video content is really making its stand, Since 2018 the amount of hours spent online watching video content has almost doubled, going from 10.5hrs to 19hrs per week! This obviously opens a huge opportunity for marketers to really capture some of this audience by taking their products and services and putting it into a digital watchable format that can be found across multiple platforms.

How Can Video Content Benefit a Digital Marketing Apprentice?

As a digital marketing apprentice you really need to show you knowledge with tools that you would use for marketing. This may consist of a blog that explains how to use something you sell, Lets say you sell smart plugs that connect to your Wi-Fi and let you set on and off schedules and be able to toggle the plug on and off remotely from your mobile. To explain a setup in a blog you would have to write up essentially a instruction manual but with more detail that may end up being around 2000 words and has taken you a 5 hours to produce. If you was to create a video step-by-step guide which by the way 96% of people have reported watching this would not only be more in detail and informative but would take a lot less time to produce a 2 minute explainer video. So you have reduced your production time by say 50% and got it down to 2.5 hours, not only is this a huge benefit to you and your company because you’re now 50% more productive! But the person viewing doesn’t have to sit and read a 2000 word blog where they have to keep going back and back to try and understand, They can visually watch and take all the steps with you.

Person being productive at work

Where To Use Video Content

Video content has become popular over all platforms but your main focus would be: Instagram, Facebook and YouTube, I’m going to show you how to cater for each individual channel.

Instagram: This is a platform where you can place any kind of video whether its infographics, ads or explainer videos. However you have to remember your target audience, there’s no harm in testing what your audience likes and they can also adapt to what you post. Instagram should really be syncing up with your knowledge as a digital marketing apprentice and be taking advantage of a strong selection of hashtags with high and low usage to get the best coverage. People will sit for hours a day scrolling through Instagram so if you can showcase your product in use for 20-30 seconds and get people to tag your company in their posts you’re well on your way to brining in a large audience to your page.

YouTube: YouTube is going to be the hub of your content, People that go here should be able to see an extensive list of tutorials and tips and tricks and some trouble shooting. There is almost no limitations on YouTube for content length and being able to get auto generated captions for those that may be hard of hearing is a crucial feature for anyone posting video content in 2022!

Facebook: Almost the same as Instagram content wise but unfortunately you don’t get to reap the benefits of the hashtags the same as Instagram. Facebook will be a more connecting platform as you may post a video and people who are interested are more likely to tag friends and family to show them. You would also benefit from tutorials on Facebook as they can be longer than 1 minute unlike Instagram.

Ready To Get Started?

Here is the link to view the growth of video content and you can see how much it can benefit you.

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Top tips for your Web Content as a Digital Marketer

Man in Striped Long Sleeve Shirt Sitting on Table Using Laptop writing web content with ApprenticeTIps.com logo in bottom right

Having trouble with your web content? As a Digital Marketer your web content should be the cornerstone of your output. As a result of this it is crucial that what goes on your website is to a high standard and above all engaging!

No matter what Content Management System (CMS) you use whether it is WordPress, Joomla or Jadu, this article will help provide an easy-to-follow web content framework for you.

Aims of Web Content

Before you post anything on your website it is important to identify what the aims and objectives are for that web content. This should have been agreed in a marketing plan or campaign plan during the planning stage of a project/campaign. An example of this could be: To provide information on apprenticeships in the UK to help grow the business.

All content should work together to help reach the agreed goal, in other words don’t just post for the sake of posting but upload content that is engaging, original and targeted.

Having a content/project managing plan is helpful to ensure what you are posting matches the aims.

User Experience

Now you know why you are posting; the next step is thinking how you are posting. You will have heard the phrase ‘customer is king’, this applies to web content too! If the user doesn’t find what you are posting easy to read, engaging and original it is unlucky they will return to your site or content in the future. Using the Yoast plugin’s readability function can help with ensuring your content is of the highest quality and what you may need to improve it. If text is too long and confusing then it may need simplifying, think to yourself can I say this in less words?

You need to ensure all links within your content are up-to-date and working because if someone is sent off your site to the wrong place, they might not find your content trustworthy or could not return. Using website monitoring tools such as SilkTide and Monsido run regular scans of your site’s content and provide reports on spelling mistakes, grammar issues and broken links.

Accessibility within your Web Content

When posting anything to your website you need to take everyone into consideration. As a result of this you provide yourself the biggest possible user base. When including links into your content make sure it is within the text and makes sense instead of just having a ‘click here’ link, as these can cause an issue for those using screen readers on your site. Similarly, if an image has been used Alt-text should be applied to it. Alt-text allows for an image to be described to someone who is using a screen reader on your site, so this will allow them to engage with your content the way you intended.

"Designers should always keep their users in mind" on laptop screen

SEO Optimisation

The next step is to ensure your web content can be found. There is little point to posting content no one is going to see; this is where SEO comes in. You will need to do some keyword research and decide what search terms you want to be found for. Using tools like Google Trends can help you decide if you want to target a highly competitive keyword which will be harder to be found for or a less competitive keyword which will have a lower possible user base.  Now you know your keyword you want all the content you post to be SEO Optimised. Using Yoast plugin will help you track how optimised your content is.

Key factors in SEO Optimisation include:

  • Keyword Density
  • Meta Description length
  • Mobile Friendliness
  • Internal and External Links
  • Content length

Success of your Web Content

You’ve posted your engaging, optimised and accessible now what? The next stage is to track the success of your web content. The most popular tool used by digital marketers is Google Analytics, this is because Google is the most used search engine, this is what you want to be ranked on.

Google Analytics provides a wide variety of data such as:

  • Unique Page View
  • Time on Page
  • Bounce Rate
  • Sessions

Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) will have been agreed in a marketing plan and these will provide the framework for what you are tracking. An example of a KPI for web content could be: Increase our average page views each month by 20%, this can be achieved with SEO optimising the posts and increasing the rankings.

Conclusion

These tips should help you on your way to posting engaging, optimised and accessible content, to meet those aims! If you would like to know more about any of the topics mentioned within this article, please find out more on our website.  

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Digital Marketing Degree Apprenticeship

Social Media

You may find that you have just finished high school and you are currently looking for another route as you are not going to university. You have landed at the right page as this Digital Marketing Degree Apprenticeship consists of working across various digital channels in order to execute digital marketing strategies. This may be challenging but if you have a plan it be executed efficiently. If you want to have a kick-start in your digital marketing profession and start an apprenticeship now, this is the best place to be, therefore please read along for exciting progression opportunities that we have available for you when completing our level 4 Digital Marketing Degree Apprenticeship

What is Digital Marketing and how do I progress to Level 6?

Digital Marketing is marketing that is implemented through the use of digital channels such as Website Optimisation, Search Engine Optimisation, Social Media, Instgaram Ads, Email Marketing, and much more. This is compared to traditional marketing such as billboards/television marketing therefore, it is vital that we maximise the digital tools that are available in the industry to excel the growth of businesses presence and show the advocacy of a brand.

If the above seems interesting to you, we have progression opportunities as well so you can earn a degree equivalent qualification whilst working as a full-time digital marketing apprentice for your marketing career. The below theory knowledge is essential for you to progress as it shows in your job role you are able to apply theoretical knowledge to real-life digital problems.

To progress you will be working along-side be taught the following modules:

  • Marketing Concepts & Theories
  • Market Research
  • Budget Management
  • Business Understanding & Commercial Awareness
  • Marketing Campaigns
  • Products & Channels

What Skills and knowledge do I require to succeed in a Level 4 Digital Marketing Apprenticeship

Skills Required

  • Create content for online channels that include CTA (Call To Action)
  • Lead on digital marketing projects.
  • Apply marketing mix knowledge to meet customer demands.

Previous Knowledge Required to excel

  • Multichannel marketing and working with agencies/clients to localise and make changes to content e.g. banners
  • Content Management System knowledge and the importance of content meta descriptions e.g. SEO, Page descriptions, and site structure + knowing the trends to make a better user journey when purchasing productss.
Word cloud displaying skills network engineer apprentices need to know.

Job Entry Requirements

  • Level 2 in Maths & English
  • Between 4-9 GCSE’s Gradesd between (C-A*)
  • Previous Marketing/Sale Experience
  • This is a UK Apprenticeship therefore, you must be living in the UK.

Job Details

  • You will earn a Bachelor’s Degree in Digital Marketing
  • Course Duration: 3 Years
  • Earn 24,000 a year

Expectations we require for you when completing your Digital Marketing Degree Apprenticeship

We require you to hire a serious candidate that would like to go beyond the normal job role expectations and show off their passion in this field. Further to this, you must be professional in your job profession through data privacy of the company and pay high attention to deadlines when work is due.

Conclusion

If you are interested for this apprenticeship and would like to continue for 3 years for a long term progression, please click this link here and one of our team members will get back to you

If you still need time to think, have a read of what employers are currently looking for in a candidate here

The do’s and don’ts of social media implementation as a digital marketer

As a digital marketing apprentice, social media implementation is vital. you’ll need to show that you can run digital campaigns across a variety of channels, including social media platforms, websites, and email. In this post, I’ve compiled a list of the top do’s and don’ts for digital marketing apprentices when it comes to launching a social campaign. You’ll be able to tweet, comment, post, and snap with confidence knowing that you’re on the right track if you follow these simple principles.

Do – Keep consistency across social media platforms

The only way for you and your organisation to flourish online is to maintain a consistent brand throughout all of your online conversations. You can improve your brand equity, consumer trust, and, eventually, your bottom line by being loyal to who you are. Reminding yourself of the corporate voice/tone, utilising brand colours when creating, and ensuring that the messages you’re publishing or re-posting are relevant to your brand image.

For a further look at the do’s and dont’s of social media as a whole, read ‘The do’s and don’ts of social media as a Level 3 Digital Marketer’.

Don’t – Allow trolls or bots to spam the comments

Delete any remarks made by a social media troll that are derogatory or insulting, and report the individual. Bots that post spammy messages in the comments are in the same boat. Despite the fact that you have no control over this behaviour, you should react to these comments as quickly as possible since they can harm your brand’s reputation.

Don't allow trolls or bots to spam the comments - The do's and don'ts of social media implementation as a digital marketer
Don’t allow trolls or bots to spam the comments

Do – Vary your social media post type

Your social media implementation should be varied to some extent. The same old 1 by 1 aspect ratio photo style can get monotonous, and if your followers grow weary of your format, they may start passing over your material without engaging with it. That’s why I always recommend sharing a balanced mix of vertical, horizontal (landscape), video (or Reels on Instagram), and gallery posts (Carousel on Instagram).

Don’t – make spelling or grammar mistakes

This may seem obvious, but you should always have a second pair of eyes proofread your posts or articles. Before sending out a post or an update, be sure it’s been proofread by at least one person. Apps like Grammarly, on the other hand, can help you lower your typo rate.

Do – Create a social media post schedule

Scheduling social media postings ahead of time is a huge time-saver. Pre-scheduling your social media activities will save a lot of time for a digital marketing apprentice, allowing you to focus on other digital parts of your company. It’s always a good idea to save time by scheduling your blog articles, tweets, and status updates ahead of time. An example of a tool that can help with this is Later.

Don’t – Mix personal and professional

Nowadays, brands and businesses strive to humanise their online presence. This might involve linking their personal and corporate accounts, as well as commenting and sharing between them. Although it looks to be a great idea when done correctly, I feel it is a hazardous strategy because your business might be overwhelmed by personal updates, leaving your audience confused about what your business stands for.

Don't mix personal and professional - The do's and don'ts of social media implementation as a digital marketer
Don’t mix personal and professional

Conclusion

Hopefully, this ‘do’s and don’ts’ advice has taught you that social media isn’t only for personal use, such as posting pictures of your cats or holiday photos! Instead, social media implementation is a strong tool for businesses and digital marketers to promote a brand, drive traffic to a website, and develop a reputation that your competitors can’t ignore.

Digital marketing apprentices are responsible for using social media implementation as a marketing strategy. The goal of social media marketing is to increase your brand’s visibility, personality, and community. Hopefully, now you can create a set of fundamental ground rules for your business’s future social media marketing campaign by following the dos and don’ts outlined above.

For more information on other apprenticeship courses available in the UK, visit our website by clicking the link here.

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Display & Video 360 – an introduction for Digital Marketing apprentices

What are the capabilities of the platform? How do I know it is suitable for my brand?

Have you ever wondered where Youtube Ads come from? Or have you ever wondered where those picture ads that appear on the websites are from? The answer is more often than not Display & Video 360 (DV360).

Display Advertisement

Display & Video 360 (commonly referred to as DV360) is a Demand Side Platform (DSP) used for all forms of Display advertising. It is a Google owned platform that gives advertisers the ability to serve different kinds of Display assets across a range of inventory. Compatible formats include:

  1. Static Banners (IAB Standard Sizes eg 300×250, 300×600 etc)
  2. HTML5 formats
  3. GIFs
  4. Video (In-stream, Out-Stream etc)
  5. Youtube (Video Stream, Video Action, Masthead, Bumper etc)
  6. Audio Ads

As you can see, DV360 caters for a marketer’s every need across the Display & Video space giving advertisers flexibility to work with whatever creative assets they have.

DV360 also has access to a wide range of inventory meaning through using the platform advertisers can reach users browsing a large range of sites on the internet. The platform is also global meaning you can reach users in most countries around the world – another huge plus for businesses looking to grow their brand online.

As DV360 is part of the Google stack, it possesses huge quantities of first party data collected and owned by Google. This is another benefit to advertisers as they have the ability to tap into these specific audiences with their marketing campaigns. Here is a list of some of the audience segments available via DV360:

  • Affinity Audiences (Reach users based on their habits and interests eg. Fashion)
  • In-market Audiences (Target users based on their recent purchase intent)
  • Category targeting (Reach users browsing particularly categories)
  • Custom segments (Build your own audience using custom keywords and URLs)

DV360 is also suitable for brands that only want to appear in the most brand safe environments. The platform is fully integrateable with a number of known and trusted brand safety partners such as DoubleVerify and Integral Ad Science. This means that brands can confidently advertise across the open web and not worry about the chances of their brand appearing next to inappropriate or sensitive content such as Terrorism or Drugs Abuse.

Display & Video 360: Further Information

Digital Marketer Apprenticeship

If you would like to learn more about DV360 as a platform and fancy earning yourself a certification at the same time check out this link: https://skillshop.exceedlms.com/student/path/8636-display-video-360-certification-exam

A guide to digital tools for your Digital Marketing Apprenticeship

A computer screen showing editing software

The term “Digital Tool” in your apprenticeship will refer to any software program, online resource, or website which helps you in your role as a Digital Marketer. For a quick guide on the types of digital tools and how they can benefit your Digital Marketing Apprenticeship, read on!

What is a digital tool?

These are tools that you use for:

  • Content creation,
  • Content scheduling,
  • Sending email content,
  • Web metrics, analysis, and reporting,
  • Communication,
  • and more.

Digital tools for content creation:

Content creation spans across text posts, such as status updates and blogs, graphic and infographic content, animated graphic video content, filmed video content, pdf content, email content – essentially any kind of visual that you see online.

Canva

Canva is an online digital tool for making graphics and videos. They have both a free and paid plan available. Canva has a huge library of templates, icons, animations, royalty-free images and music that you can use for your business. It’s a must-have for any digital marketer looking to create infographics, videos, or dynamic presentations with a bit of extra eye-catching content.

Herefish and MailChimp

Herefish and MailChimp are both digital tools for creating templates for email marketing newsletters. They both have a library of pre-existing templates, and the option to create your own from scratch, adding in your company branding.

Adobe Creative Cloud

Adobe Creative Cloud is a library of content creation programmes. There are many different ones available, but here were we’ll discuss;

Photoshop

Photoshop is used to create original images, or edit existing images and photos. You can remove distracting objects from a photo, adjust the colours of an image, or create GIF content. Content created in Photoshop has the option to be high resolution, so it is a great programme for logo and asset creation.

Premiere Pro

Premiere Pro is a video editing software. You can cut and move around clips, adjust the speed, audio and colour levels, and layer videos, music and images on top of one another. Premiere can export GIFs, .mov, .mp4, .mp3 and more.

Audition

Audition is an audio editing software. You can import your video content and remove any background noise, amplify the voice of someone speaking, add ambient background noise, and more. Audition is great for anyone looking to clean up audio if you’ve filmed content without a mic – or to polish and perfect audio that already used a mic.

Digital tools for content scheduling:

Content scheduling allows you to plan a date and time for a post on a social media channel. By creating and scheduling content in advance, you can work on other tasks and know that every post is going out as planned.

Sprout Social

With Sprout Social, you can connect multiple accounts to schedule content. You’re given a calendar, which shows all your upcoming posts. You can set posts to go out on specific platforms, at specific dates and times. For certain channels, you can set thumbnail images too. Currently, you can schedule images and videos, but not documents or Instagram carousels.

An image of a person on a computer, editing a video using a digital tool.
A person using video editing software, which is a type of Digital Tool.

Sending email content:

Every email that you receive from a clothing brand, service, or company is classed as email content (or email marketing). This type of content plays an important role in lead generation and can also be used as a method of linking back to your website and social media.

Herefish and MailChimp

In Herefish and Mailchimp, you can create lists of contacts to receive your content, and put together tailored automations to reach these lists. By using these programmes, bulk email campaigns are sent out without having to manually type out each individual address. If you’ve got content you want to go out to people in a specific postcode, make a list for your contacts in… Derby for example, set up the automation, and hit send! Your contacts will then receive it instantly.

Digital tools for web metrics, analysis and reporting:

Web metrics are classed as a specialist area, and will be important in your apprenticeship when showing that you can monitor your social media accounts, pull through data, and interpret it to form short and long term marketing plans.

Instagram Insights

This digital tool is only available through the mobile app. Instagram Insights will give you the ability to see your audience demographics, such as age and location.  You can also view metrics for feed posts and story posts, narrowing these down to engagement, reach, shares, and profile visits.

One feature that sets Instagram Insights apart is the ability to see which days, and time of day your audience is most active. With this, you can develop a content scheduling plan tailored to your business and audience, posting when they are most active and likely to see it.

Sprout Social

Sprout Social is a one-stop location for all your social platform metrics. You can compare content across channels or view content from one specific platform. Sprout has a Reports feature, where data is automatically pulled through and formed into charts and graphs. This saves you time inputting data to create your own infographics for presentations. Sprout also automatically compares stats from month-on-month, giving you a percentage for each metric so that you can see where stats have reduced or increased.

Herefish and MailChimp

After sending out email content, you’ll need to monitor how it performs. Herefish and MailChimp track data from those who receive your content. They can tell you who received the email, who unsubscribed or opted out, and who clicked a link. They can sometimes also tell you which company the contact works for, and what industry they’re in. This is crucial information to know whether your content is reaching the right audience.

Communication

How do you speak with team members, other internal staff, or external companies? For every email or direct message you send, a digital tool is keeping you connected.

Outlook

Outlook is an email application. You can use it to send and receive emails, schedule meetings or confirm attendance. You can also set out-of-office automatic replies, and make rules to re-direct emails you receive.

Zoom, Microsoft Teams, and Skype

After the last few years of lockdown and working from home, you’re likely familiar with at least one of these digital tools. They can be used for online meetings, helping you to communicate from afar. They allow you to share your screen and lead presentations, so this can come in handy for any client proposals you make.

 

Conclusion

There are many digital tools that can be used in your digital marketing apprenticeship. They can make completing tasks much easier, whilst also showing that you have a great understanding of your role as a digital marketer. These digital tools are often part of our everyday lives, without us even realising.

Now that you know how to make, schedule, and report on your content, it’s time to learn some social media etiquette! Check out our guide “The do’s and don’ts of social media as a Level 3 Digital Marketer” to find out more.

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Top ways to improve your professional qualifications as a digital marketer!

Are you currently doing a digital marketing apprenticeship? Maybe looking to start one in the future or have even completed one? Now you’re wondering how to stand out against everyone else! Read on as this blog will show you the best way to improve your professional qualifications and stand out.

Facebook Blueprints

Facebook Blueprints is an amazing opportunity to learn valuable up-to-date information in the digital marketing industry. With a wide range of free courses available to everyone, you can learn the best practices for digital marketing on social platforms, whether it is budgeting for paid campaigns, growing your audience organically, or even how to create engaging ads. While most of these courses are created with being used for mainly Facebook, the knowledge you learn from these courses can be used for any social media platform.

You can take your digital marketing qualifications to the next level and complete the certifications that Facebook offers, however, these do cost money and last for a limited time period.

If you want to find out more about how you can use Facebook Blueprints to improve your digital marketing qualifications, click here.

HubSpot Academy

HubSpot Academy is another amazing opportunity for growing your digital marketing qualifications, home to 100s of free online courses with free certifications too! However, these certifications last for 2 years but can be completed again for free.

While they offer courses on how to use HubSpot as CRM, they also offer a range of digital marketing courses, covering sectors such as SEO, contextual marketing, email marketing & digital marketing basics.

This is a number 1 ApprenticeTip.com recommendation, sign up today and start climbing the digital marketing ladder! Click here to learn more about HubSpot Academy!

A illustration of a man in a graduation outfit surrounded by electronic devices, books and a certificate.

How to show your impressive qualifications!

So you have followed the recommendations above and now you’re sitting on a throne of certifications, right? But now you’re wondering how to show them off? Here is ApprenticeTips.com trick to show everyone in the digital marketing industry how qualified you are!

Create a LinkedIn account

LinkedIn is the perfect networking platform to connect with valuable peers and thought leaders in the Digital Marketing Industry. Everyone that you hope to work for or with is already on LinkedIn is building their networks, which is why you need to as well!

Fill out your LinkedIn profile

Now that you are set up on LinkedIn, you should be making sure you have completed your personal profile. This is the perfect opportunity to put all your new qualifications on display, with the sub-section “Licences & Certifications”, you can all of the courses you have completed as well as a document of the certificate.

You can also complete LinkedIn’s Skill assessments, which is essentially another certification awarded by LinkedIn to confirm that you are qualified within the skill you choose.

Start building your network

Your profile is all set up and you’re ready to show how much of an expert you are in the digital marketing industry! Now you just need to find who to show it to.

Join relevant groups in the digital marketing industry, follow hashtags that are relevant too! Use these to not only find useful content to gain from but to find people in the same industry as you and connect with them, comment and like their posts and make yourself stand out in the network.

Conclusion

Congratulations, you should now be on the path to being an expert digital marketer and ready to grow your career path in the digital marketing industry. If you found this article useful then you may find that our other digital marketing blogs are worth a read, click here for more.

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The do’s and don’ts of social media as a Level 3 Digital Marketer

Social media platforms on iPhone

Social media, as we all know, is a wonderful but difficult platform to perfect when it comes to digital marketing. Social media is full of differing opinions, which is one of the reasons it is so exciting at times, but it’s also the reason there are strict guidelines you need to follow as a digital marketing apprentice.

Without following guidelines, you are increasing the risk of harming your brand/personal reputation. Social media is increasingly becoming a key factor in business-to-business deals, so ensuring you are representing your brand strongly in social media is ever more important. 

Below are listed some of the most important Do’s and Don’ts of social media.

Use social media scheduling tools

Starting off with the do’s of social media, there is nothing more important than a social media scheduling tool. 

With social media being 24/7, being able to post at the right time for when your audience is online. If you work the common 9-5, then posting at 3 pm might not be suitable if you’re targeting office workers. This is where a social media scheduling tool is beneficial. 

A tool like Hubspot, Hootsuite, or SEMRush will allow you to schedule posts, while you’re at work (so you’re not spending out-of-office house posting online), and then the tool will post on behalf of you at your desired time.

There are multiple benefits of this, including:

  • Advanced scheduling
  • Posting at times your audience is online
  • Being able to create one post and schedule across multiple platforms

Social media analytic tools

Utilising effectively a social media analytics is growing ever more important, to prove to senior managers that the work you’re doing provides value to the business.

Tools like SEMRush or Hubspot will allow you to see post engagement, times that your audience is online, what type of posts work well, and your level of followers over a set period of time.

This is extremely useful for not only yourself but also when presenting your strategy and research to the senior managers. An analytics tool will allow you to review your own social media strategy, over a period of time, in order for you to make improvements.

A range of content across your social media is necessary

A common misconception about social media is that you always need to have a selling point in every one of your posts. This isn’t the case.

Nowadays, social media is flooded with companies trying to sell constantly, but the new generation of social media listeners want to build a personal relationship with brands, from which they will then purchase.

This leads to my above point of posting a range of content, incorporating ‘soft’ content with posts that are directed towards inbound leads or sales. ‘Soft’ content would ebb team updates, product updates, which allow your followers to feel a part of your brand, which builds the personal relationship between them. 

Don’t leave messages from customers or clients unread

Shopping cart with a laptop to signify online shopping
Online customers are just as important as in-person customers, so customer service needs to be paramount.

Answering queries or engaging with comments on your posts is critical. Sometimes, negative reviews can often be left to avoid conflict, however, followers have to see that your brand takes negative reviews seriously, and deal with them in the appropriate manner. 

Commonly, the best practice is to ask the negative reviewer to message the company’s social media page privately to avoid the conflict taking place in the comments, and for everyone to see. 

Responding to customers also allows your brand the opportunity to build a personal relationship with the customer further, by engaging in conversation with them and assisting/replying to them.

Don’t allow obvious grammatical areas

Social media is one of the most important brand representation tools for your business, so ensuring you represent your brand appropriately is necessary.

This is extremely important for grammatical errors. To avoid this error, always ensure you have double-checked your posts, and installed Grammarly, just in case you miss anything! 

Another good practice is to send your posts to another team member to check over. This can ensure you have two pairs of eyes, checking posts for grammatical and context errors. 

Don’t follow accounts that are not useful to your company

Although not commonly checked, or viewed by clients or customers, the accounts you follow on social media are extremely crucial to your brand reputation.

By following companies on social media, you are almost creating a connection between the two brands, because you are following them to view their posts or tips.

This makes it extremely important as to who you follow, as the brands you follow can reflect on your brand also.

Conclusion

In conclusion, adhering to these points above can somewhat ensure your social media reputation is proofed, and you have tools to ensure your social media management can prove its value, with little effort, made easier by the scheduling tools.

As with anything though, social media management requires you to be adaptable, in order to stay on-trend.

How to Improve Your Search Engine Ranking in 10 Easy Steps

Guy on laptop working on search engine optimisation

Did you know that over 90% of people’s online experiences start on a search engine? Did you also know that around 75% of people using search engines won’t even go to second page of results? Therefore, search engine optimisation (SEO) is now a crucial factor to consider when creating your content online. In this blog we will go through 10 easy ways to improve your SEO rankings without having to pay a penny and introduce you to some free online digital tools that can help you along the way.

10 Easy Steps

  1. Titles, Headings and Subheadings
  2. Keywords
  3. High Quality Unique Content and Your First 100 Words
  4. Internal Links
  5. External Links
  6. Images
  7. Page Loading Speed
  8. Video
  9. Social Sharing
  10. Mobile responsiveness

Titles, Headings and Subheadings

There are indirect benefits to making your titles, headings, and subheadings the best they can be. If people coming to your page aren’t engaged and can’t quickly find what they’re looking for they may leave your site. Search engines measure this as bounce-rate; if your site/page is getting a high bounce-rate search engines will conclude that your page is not of a high quality. A good title, heading and subheading engages your customers, adds structure, and signposts your content. A good way to structure your titles, headings and subtitles are as follows.

Number or trigger word + Adjective + Keyword + promise

Keywords

A well optimised page for search engines speaks the same language as its visitors. Keywords are the words or phrases that your visitors are searching for when using search engines. Before writing your content, it is important for your SEO that you plan your keywords and use them in your headings and content including image tags. There are lots of free tools that can help you plan these in advance such as Google Keyword Planner.

High Quality Unique Content and Your First 100 Words

High quality content provides users with a good experience and can reduce bounce-rates as previously mentioned in our ‘Titles, Headings and Subheadings’ section. Unique content is also crucially important for search engine optimisation as search engines do not like duplicated content and will penalize websites for posting it. How are your first 100 words important I hear you say? Your first 100 words will likely be the deciding factor as to whether a visitor stays on your page or not. They need to be engaging and more importantly need to include your keywords. Search engines put more weight on the search terms that show up early on your page, they help search engines identify what your page is all about

Quality and relevant internal and external links are a key indicator to search engines that your website/page is of high quality. Some pages internal and external will have higher link value due to more backlinks, so it is important to choose high-quality pages that are also highly relevant to the content you are writing about.

Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) Tiles

Images

Images are a great way to help your readers understand your content better and help break up monotonous text, of course the image need to be relevant to the subject matter! There are several factors to consider when choosing your photo relating to SEO. SEO starts with the file name; an image file name ‘IMG564065’ provides no context to search engines therefor it is important to choose the file name carefully and be descriptive and use keywords. Image file format should be considered, there are many to choose from so it is advised to do some research first, it is also wise to keep the file small and compressed as this will help your page loading speed which we will get onto a bit late on. Search engines can’t see the image, so it is important to add context with alt-tags. Alt-tags like file names should be descriptive and involve keywords to help search engines identify what they are about.

Page Loading Speed

Page loading speed is the amount of time your page takes to load. Page loading speed is now a crucial component not only to your user experience as user patience is getting shorter and shorter but also to your SEO. It is now a ranking factor. There are lots of ways to increase your page loading speed such as compressing your images which factors for a large share of your page size.

Video

Video is quickly becoming one of the most important forms of content marketing and its presence on your page can make or break it. Videos help engage you customers and keep them on your page for longer. There is also speculation that results with video are ranking higher than results without.

Social Sharing

Although social media shares are not directly linked in SEO rankings, they are without doubt a contributing factor. They increase the potential to drive high quality traffic to your content as in people that our genuinely interested and want to learn more. This gives search engines lots of signals that you content is good and therefore ranks your content higher. There has been research on this that shows that there is a very strong like between social media shares and SEO.

Mobile Responsiveness

Last on our list but certainly not the least important is mobile responsiveness. The mobile platform is now dominating for most of the online industry; therefore, it is vital that your website/page is mobile responsive. Responsive web design makes your website/page more accessible, fast, and navigable. As most of your visitors will most likely be using mobile if your page is not responsive, they simply won’t hang around and your bounce-rate will rise.

Conclusion

There are now so many factors to consider when optimising your content for SEO with plenty more on the way, ever evolving and changing. It is important to update and refresh your content regularly. Hopefully this blog has helped you on your way to a better search engine optimised site.

Below are some articles you may also find helpful links:

5 SEO tips my Digital Marketing Apprenticeship taught me

Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) Starter Guide