How to Improve SEO in 5 Simple Steps

The acronym “SEO” on a plain white background

Why is SEO Important?

SEO, also known as search engine optimisation, is the process of improving your website in order to increase its visibility on search engine results pages (SERPs). SEO is vital to every online business, whether you have an e-commerce website or run a blog like us, search engine optimisation can benefit everyone. The better visibility your site has, the more traffic and new visitors you will get to your website, and we all know that increasing organic traffic is one of the most important tasks in digital marketing.

Improve SEO in 5 Easy Steps

  1. Research relevant keywords
  2. Improve website speed
  3. Optimise page content
  4. Optimise title tags and meta descriptions
  5. Build links

Research Relevant Keywords

Keywords are the ‘key’ to successful search engine optimisation. Keywords are used by potential users and customers every day. When you’re using a search engine, what are you searching for? Most of the time you are using keywords to find relevant results, you probably used keywords to find this blog! That is what makes keywords the foundation of SEO.

So how do you perform keyword research? Researching for relevant keywords is easy, there are loads of keyword researching tools available to help you in your search for the perfect keyword list. The first tool we suggest is Google. 5,6 billion searches are done on Google every day, so where is a better place to find keywords. You can use features such as auto-complete search, ‘people also ask’ section, and top search results. These features from Google show what potential customers are searching for, helping you to get in the mind of the customers.

You can also use keyword research sites to help you find the best keywords for your business. The benefit of keyword research sites is that you can see search volume and difficulty. The volume shows you how often that keyword is searched for, this is useful because you want to get a high volume of searches, however, you need to take into account the difficulty of the word. Keyword difficulty refers to how easy it is to rank for that specific keyword. If you are a small business it will be easier for you to rank in SERPs for low volume, low difficulty keywords. One free keyword tool you could use is Uber Suggests.

Once you know which keywords you want to rank for it will make SEO seem a breeze!

Improve Website Speed

Improving website speed can be difficult, that’s why we have one simple tip anyone can do that will help you improve your website speed instantly! This tip is to remove any images that are over 300KB and replace them with images that have a smaller file size. Large file size images take longer to load, this can result in pages that aren’t fully loaded and can also cause page shifting when they finally do load in. So now, you may be wondering how do you make image sizes smaller? It’s easy, there are hundreds of free sites that you can use which will make your images smaller, all you have to do is upload the image. One site we suggest is Reduce Images.

Optimise Page Content

The second step you can take to optimise your page content is to add image alt text. Image alt text is copy that appears in place of the image if that image fails to load, it also helps webpage crawlers understand what the image is showing and how it relates to the content on that page, in turn, this will improve your ranking. Image alt text is important to get right, you want to be detailed while not having too much text. Using keywords in your image alt text can also help with boosting your page rank. Below we have attached an example of good and bad image alt text to give you a better idea of what it should look like.

A small Jack Russel dog sitting in front of a pink background

Bad Alt Text: “cute small dog pink background”

Good Alt Text: “A small Jack Russel dog sitting in front of a pink background”

Optimise Title Tags and Meta Descriptions

Optimising a title tag and meta description is just like content optimisation, all you need is relevant keywords for the content. When you have your relevant keywords, you are able to create your title tag. You want this to be similar to the page title, and you want to use similar keywords in your title tag that you use in your page content. Doing this allows search engines to understand the content of your page, and will rank it highly for being consistent in its messaging. 

Meta descriptions are harder as they are longer summaries of the page, but make the most of this space. Meta descriptions should keep between 140-160 characters long. This gives you enough room to hit a few keywords and give a brief summary of the contents of the page. When writing your meta description keep in mind your USPs (unique selling points) this is a feature search engines will praise you on. You want your description to be a compelling argument as to why someone should click on it. Below we have added an example of a good and bad meta description. 

Good meta description: “Find all of the best phones and tariffs on the official Carphone Warehouse site – Shop Apple, Samsung, Sony and Google for a new phone with all the latest deals”

Bad meta description: “Apple iPhone 6.9” screen touch screen face ID, 11th gen great deals O2, Three and EE. Shop Carphone Warehouse”

Building Links

Last but not least is linking. Building inbound links allows Google to see how trustworthy you are, if you have inbound links coming from big, trustworthy companies, then Google is more likely to see your website as credible and so will increase SERP ranking. One easy way of building these links is through affiliate marketing sites such as Awin. Affiliate marketing is when you gain publishers to put ads on their website for your company, and they get a commission from doing this, these commissions can be from sales made or generated leads. By using affiliate links you are able to communicate with big and trustworthy companies to give a larger online presence to your brand and website. It also allows you to choose whose site you have links on, meaning you can pick websites and pages related to your company.

You can also do external links, this is where you add links on your website to other websites. By doing this you further increase the credibility of your website, while also improving the reader’s experience by providing them with outside references.

In Conclusion

In conclusion, SEO doesn’t have to be as hard as it looks. If you follow these 5 simple steps, whether you’re a business owner or are doing a digital marketing apprenticeship, you can increase organic traffic with ease. 

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Basic Marketing Principles 101

Basic Marketing Principals: Product, Place, Promotion, Price (The 4 Ps).
Basic Marketing Principals: Product, Place, Promotion, Price (The 4 Ps).

As a digital marketer, it is essential that to understand how to apply basic marketing principles for each and every job role/client. Whether you’re a digital marketing apprentice or just looking to brush up on the basics, read on.

Basic Marketing Principles: The Marketing Mix

The idea of the marketing mix was initially brought about by Neil Borden. Professor Borden first conceptualised the idea of the “4 Ps” in the 1950s, and ever since it has been adapted and adopted into everyday marketing efforts. Recently, 3 more Ps have been added to the mix, which includes People, Process and Physical Evidence. However, we will focus on the initial 4 here.

It has fluidity, which means marketing apprentices and gurus alike, can focus efforts on individual aspects of the mix.

Product

Product refers to what a company sells, whether it be a physical item or service. It should serve to fill a gap in the market, and supply a demand. Marketers can be innovative, and create demand if the supply is already there. For example, Coca Cola moved into the UK bottled water industry with Dasani. An already pretty saturated market, Coca Cola marketed the water as “one of the purest waters around”. Coca Cola didn’t take long to withdraw the product when it was found to contain bromate, a substance linked to cancer.

Marketers need to understand that products have a life cycle, it just so happened that Dasani water met decline faster than it should.

Alternatively, Apple was the first to develop a touch screen phone, capable of playing music. The iPhone launched in 2007, and the company has since sold over 2 billion units. The iPhone is now said to be in the maturity stage of the product life cycle. To find out more about the product life cycle, visit this page.

Place

Place dictates where the product or service should be supplied. The aim is to get the product/service in front of as many potential customers as possible. This may be placing a product in certain shops, or even product placement on TV and films. For example, the James Bond movie GoldenEye was the first to feature a BMW Z3 as the iconic Bond car, even before the car was released. BMW received 9,000 after the film launched.

Promotion

Promotion encompasses how the product/service is to advertised as well as public relations. Basically, why should someone buy into the brand’s product or service? Promotion and place tend to go hand in hand in this respect. For example, where does a product feature on a website, and how will this be promoted towards a specific audience. For digital marketers, SEO is a particularly important component to how well placed and promoted a product or service is on the internet.

Price

How much will the public be willing to pay for a product or service. In this element of the marketing mix, it is important to conduct market research. What exactly is the real value of the product or service, and what is the perceived value (also in comparison to competitors) is very important. Marketers have raised prices of a product to raise the perceived value, however if this is overdone, the product/service can see a vast decline very quickly if this is found to be the case. The Coca Cola example featured above is also relevant in this case.

Conclusion

The marketing mix will be incorporated into marketing strategy for decades to come. Even expect more adaptations! However, if you are a marketing apprentice looking to cover the basic marketing principles, we hope this article was to your satisfaction.

For more blogs, visit our latest blogs section!

Top 10 Tips for Email Marketing

Laptop Showing Gmail

Email marketing is a great way to connect with customers, promote sales and raise brand awareness so we have created a blog post to reveal our Top 10 Tips for Email Marketing! If you’re a marketer then you probably already know the importance of email marketing tools and optimising campaigns for maximum ROI. However, many businesses send out emails that get few opens and clicks. So how can you improve your email marketing reports? We have listed 10 tips to explain how!

Choose your Email Marketing Software

Email marketing is a powerful marketing tool, so it is important to make sure you are using the right software to improve your marketing and take it to the next level. Email marketing software’s don’t just send emails, they include tools that are able to increase your audience, segment your lists and provide reports to grow your business and earn more revenue. We have listed 10 free email marketing campaigns to help you save both time and money:

These email marketing softwares allow you to get creative with your marketing. Their free plans provide features such as email creation, scheduling, and reports. Creating a strong email marketing strategy is essential to connecting with your audience in a personalised way and gives the business the ability to reach customers with ease.

Make it Easy to Subscribe

To reach your audience there needs to be a quick and simple way to subscribe. This can be done through online forms and promoted on social media to attract your audience. The form must be simple to navigate and quick to fill out to ensure you do not lose the attention of the potential subscriber. If the form requires too much information or is hard to find the potential subscriber will lose interest and therefore not join the mailing list

Have a Clear Purpose

When creating your email it is important to have a clear purpose in mind. You need to know what you want to achieve and put the email together with that goal in mind. For example, an online gaming company will advertise its games with the goal of producing further sales.

Look at Previous Reports

If you have used an email marketing software in the past, it is always a good idea to have a look at how it performed. This way you can analyse what features worked well, what content encouraged engagement, open rates, and more. For example, if your email got a high open rate but low click rate, this may mean that your content wasn’t engaging enough for the subscriber to interact with it.

Create Your Subject Line

The first thing your subscribers will read is your subject line, so it is important that it capture’s their attention and urges them to read more. If it doesn’t, many subscribers will delete the email or potentially unsubscribe from the mailing list. Here are some guidelines to help lead your subject line for success:

  • Make a Promise: Get 20% off our new product!
  • Make Them Intrigued: A free treat on our behalf
  • Use of Numbers: Five reasons why you should visit our website
  • Ask a Question: Are you feeling hungry?
  • Scarity Tactic: Only 10 sale products remaining!

Remember to keep your subject line brief, 50 characters is the maximum length recommended for an email subject line.

Personalise Your Message

Although your message may be sent to thousands of subscribers, it should be written as if you are talking to an individual target customer. There are multiple ways you can personalise your message, for example, you can divide your email lists into smaller groups based on location, interests, content download, recent purchases, and more. Another example of how to personalise your message is by talking to the recipient with their name. This gives a nice touch to your email and will make it stand out from the crowd.

Include a Call to Action

As you have already established the purpose of the email, you will know what you want the readers to do. Using a clear call to action within the email will help encourage the subscribers to do what you intend them to do. For example, you could use features such as a ‘Buy Now’ or ‘Visit Our Website’ button within the email.

Create Incentives

Creating valuable content is a great way to provide your email subscribers with enough incentive to engage with the content. To help influence this, you can promise the subscriber discounts, entry to a giveaway, or a special deal

Use Interactive Features

To improve client interest in your brand you can embed creative features such as a countdown, survey, or live poll to encourage them to engage.

Measure the Outcome

The last tip on our Top 10 Tips for Email Marketing is Measuring the Outcome. This is a great way to continually improve your email marketing campaigns by tracking what is successful and what isn’t. This can be done by comparing previous reports and the features you used differently. Keep a record of important statistics such as open rates, click rates, and revenue for future purposes.

Analytic Research

Conclusion

If you found this Top 10 Tips for Email Marketing blog post hopeful and would like to keep up to date with everything apprenticeship related then make sure to follow us on LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook!

Enjoyed reading this blog post? Check out our latest posts here!

What Makes A Good Digital Marketer, and how will an Apprenticeship help me?

So, you’re thinking of going down the apprenticeship route? Here is a quick guide on what it takes to be a fantastic Digital Marketer, and everything you can learn in the apprenticeship world. Read on to see what employers are looking for when finding the perfect Digital Marketer.

First, let’s talk a little bit about what Digital Marketing is, and what it involves.

Digital marketing is a form of promotion, run through online or offline digital channels. These can include search engines, social media, email, websites, and apps. Digital marketing was initially introduced back in the 1990s, as the digital age began to take off, the internet was developing, and more and more people were using technology in their day-to-day lives. As the years went on, digital development began to change the way brands and businesses would market. People were starting to use online shops instead of physical shops, and social media meant a business could market a product or an idea with the tap of a phone screen. Digital marketing is a forever evolving way of promotion, and with the correct skills learned, can make a great career for someone whose passions lie in this field.

Roles and Responsibilities
Let’s break down the different roles and responsibilities for two Digital Marketing jobs.

  • Digital Marketing Executive

A digital Marketing Executive holds the responsibility of online marketing strategies for an organisation. From planning and executing marketing campaigns to supplying content for the organisation’s website, a Digital Marketing Executive has a very important role. Their responsibilities include:

  • Manage and develop digital marketing campaigns
  • Manage website
  • Take charge of all social media content (Facebook, Instagram etc)
  • Work on SEO of website pages
  • Edit and upload any content, videos podcasts etc
  • Email campaigns
  • Track analytics of website or email campaigns
  • Fix any error in online content and arrange webinars and webcasts

The roles of a Digital Marketing Executive will be very similar to those in a Level 3 Apprenticeship

  • Digital Marketing Manager

The role of a Digital Marketing Manager is to get the word out about your brand in the digital space. See below the roles and responsibilities involved in this job:

  • Develop, implement, manage marketing campaigns which promote your products or service
  • Enhance brand awareness in digital space
  • Drive traffic and acquire any leads
  • Identify and evaluate and new digital technologies by measuring site traffic

So, what traits will I need to be the best Digital Marketer I can be?

  • Creative – Creativity is key when it comes to Digital Marketing. Having the ability to come up with and create eye-catching pieces of content, or effective ideas will be very beneficial when searching for a job in this field. Being original and authentic is also extremely important, as well as following trends and keeping up with the fast-evolving digital world.
  • Teamwork – Chances are, you will not be alone in your marketing role. Being able to communicate effectively with your co-workers is essential, whether that be coming up with new marketing strategies as a team or solving a problem.
  • Initiative – Digital Marketing is often a lot like being your own boss. You will oversee coming up with new and innovative marketing strategies, so a good initiative is important. It’s always good to do what you’re told to – and more.
  • Resilience – Digital Marketing is not an easy job. There will be obstacles put in your way, so you must have a never-give-up attitude. Having a positive mentality even whilst faced with problems in going to help you in your career path.
  • Confident – Last but not least, have confidence in yourself. Share your ideas, no matter how wild and bizarre. Remember, a shared idea is a better idea.

How will a Digital Marketing Apprenticeship help me?

Apprenticeships are a great way to learn new skills and behaviours on the job. You will gain vital experience with hands-on tasks, whilst completing exciting marketing plans, such as running campaigns. An apprenticeship with not only give you the experience needed to be a successful Digital Marketer, but you will also be rewarded with the qualifications you desire.

Top tips for a digital marketer

Work can sometimes feel overwhelming, and you aren’t sure what to do. Marketing is no different. Knowing the right tricks of the trade or the best method for completing tasks is something you usually learn as you develop into your role. With technology being ever-changing, especially online, any digital marketer needs to have a strong understanding of trends.

Email marketing and social media can be difficult to perform well at. Understanding how to market to your target audience is pivotal to the success of your brand. In order to fully get a grip on your role, here are 5 top tips for any new digital marketer.

digital marketer

Understanding your target audience

Before you can even start marketing, you need to have a firm understanding of your audience. Completing a market analysis is a good way forward for this. Alternatively, you can have a look at competitors in your industry and see who they market to. Market research can help you define your target audience so that you can market accurately. You wouldn’t want to create material that appeals to over-50s if your products are popular with 16-25s.

If you have joined an existing company in a training role, then they may have this already sorted out. Make sure to ask colleagues if you are unsure. Once you know who your audience is, you can see what they are into. With research, you can get a fundamental understanding of how to proceed. See what interests your audience, and then create content relating to it.

SEO

SEO or Search Engine Optimisation helps how well your website ranks on search engines like Google. Everything that you post, from social media to blog posts, can be affected in some way by SEO. It is always a priority to make sure content has been optimised fully. There are many different factors to SEO, such as meta titles/descriptions, images, tags, and the content itself.

Keywords and topics are also very important for your ranking. Make sure to always use a relevant keyword for what you are wanting to rank for. Topics, which are groups of related keywords, can also help you with your ranking and optimisation.

Generally, SEO can seem quite straightforward. Meta descriptions should be kept between 140-150 words, keywords should be used, and content should be fresh and relevant. However, there are many more factors to SEO you will need to understand as a digital marketer. There are plenty of sources online to help you learn the best SEO techniques

The importance of backlinks as a digital marketer

Backlinking is when other websites link back to a target webpage on your website. High DA websites linking to your website is a serious ranking factor on Google. The more sites that can link to your website and webpage, the higher authority you will have, and the better ranking.

Consider outreaching to others to link to your site. You should always try and aim for high DA sites, as having too many low DA rating sites can seem “spammy” to Google, and negatively affect your rating.

Email marketing

Email marketing is a good way to reach your audience on another platform other than your website and social media. There are tools out there, such as Mailchimp, which can help you learn good techniques for marketing effectively. Keywords and word counts come into play when email marketing. Ideally, any text should be kept short and concise, to help with click rates. People don’t enjoy reading a large amount of text when opening a newsletter, so keep it to the point.

Another factor is the subject and title you use for the newsletter. Make sure the title is snappy and attention-grabbing. Consider a variety of different email campaigns. Promotional emails may do better than an average newsletter. Find out what works best for your business.

Conclusion

There are many different factors to working as a digital marketer. Some factors can change overnight in some cases, so it’s always good to keep a close eye on the trends. If you are interested in learning more, visit ApprenticeTips.

5 Steps to Creating a Successful Email Marketing Campaign

iphone, ios, home screen, close up, pixels, retina, smartphone, icon, mail, email,
Photo by Brett Jordan on Unsplash

Knowing how to create and deliver a successful email marketing campaign can be a hugely powerful tool to have in your portfolio. As a digital marketing apprentice, it can sometimes feel like you are not quite sure where to start. Is it the subject line, the copywriting or even the target audience?

In this post, I aim to give you a formula that should help your emails perform, time and time again.

Why Email Marketing?

Businesses across the globe are learning that even though Social Media is growing rapidly, Email Marketing is not a channel that can be neglected.

It consistently shows the highest conversion rate of all marketing channels. And, as a result, delivers the best ROI. Therefore, learning how to deliver them effectively, is vital to a business’s growth and success.

Some statistics pulled together by Optinmonster compare Email Marketing with Social Media in terms of potential reach and a few common KPIs.

A table showing the comparison between Email Marketing and Social Media statistics.

The article delves into each of these elements and helps you understand the key differences between email and social media. Give it a read here to dive into the detail.

How to do it

  1. Understand why you are sending the email

Before anything else, you need to make sure you understand why you are sending this email. What is your goal? What do you want customers to do as a result of getting the email?

There are a number of different goals that emails can help a business achieve, such as;

  • Raising brand awareness
  • Generating revenue
  • Encouraging website traffic
  • Informing customers

As part of your goal setting, it is important to set out how you will assess whether these goals are being met. This can be done using KPIs or Key Performance Indicators. We will look at these later on in more detail.

Once you have a good idea of your email campaign goal, it will help you formulate the content, the targeting and how you analyse the performance.

2. Decide on your audience

A large part of an email marketing campaign is the audience.

Woman's hand writing the word "audience" on a whiteboard, with arrows.
Photo by Melanie Deziel on Unsplash

There are a number of ways to identify a target audience based on certain characteristics. These can be broken down into 4 main segmentations;

  • Demographic: Age, gender, race, marital status etc.
  • Psychographic: Lifestyle, personality, values and beliefs etc.
  • Behavioural: Spending habits, brand interactions, customer loyalty etc.
  • Geographic: City, region, country etc.

Use your brand and campaign goals to identify your customers.

3. Create your email

Depending on your end goal, there are several types of email campaign to choose from. You also need to make sure the type you opt for is suitable for your chosen audience.

Here are some of the most popular or recognisable email types;

  • Newsletters – These are ideal for when brands want to share industry information, news, business updates or even sending out a weekly round up of blog posts. Typically they are sent on a regular schedule such as daily, weekly or monthly and are very rarely used for promotional purposes.
  • Promotional campaigns – Typically used when a brand is trying to sell a product or service. The email will highlight key features, benefits, positive reviews and sometimes a price point before directing customers to the website to purchase using a CTA.
  • Triggered emails – These are emails that are sent as a result of customers performing a specific action such as abandoning an online shopping cart. The email will remind the customer of their cart and prompt them to return and complete their purchase.
  • Re-engagement emails – When a customer has become ‘inactive’ with a brand, these emails will target them with the goal of getting them to re-engage. For example, if a customer stops regularly visiting a website, a brand might send them a special discount code to tempt them back to being ‘active’.

Although the email type plays a large part in whether you meet your goals, it is not the entire picture. Making sure you send the email at the best time can also be crucial in its success. And so, on to step 4…

4. Find the best time to send it

To get maximum engagement with your emails, you need to consider when you send them. This means looking at both the day of the week and the time of day.

Some thing are obvious, for example, sending an email to a UK audience at 3am would get very little engagement as people are likely asleep. However finding the right hour of the day might seem a little more tricky.

Luckily, a huge number of studies have been done, analysing millions of email campaigns, to find that optimal time. And, whilst the studies vary in size and style, they all show a very similar pattern.

A infographic showing that the best days of the week to send an email marketing campaign are Tuesday, Thursday and Wednesday.

Based on number of email opens and clicks, Tuesday came out as the top day of the week to send out those emails, with Thursday coming up as a great day to send a second email in the same week.

Whilst the studies did find slightly more varying results when it came to what time of day to send emails, there were a few more popular times, based on differing factors.

An infographic showing the key times of day at which to send an email marketing campaign based on different data factors. 10am, 8pm. 2pm and 6am.

Of course, you can take from this that Tuesday at 10am should be the best time to send your emails and it is definitely a good starting point but we should always consider our specific business, brand and audience when making this decision as well.

5. Measure your success

When it comes to KPIs for an email marketing campaign, there are a few common ones that businesses tend to focus on. These are;

  • Clickthrough rates – the percentage of the audience who clicked on one or more links within the email. CTR is good in understanding what content your audience most engages with.
  • Conversion rates – the percentage of the audience who click on a link within the email and then complete an action. This action can vary e.g. purchasing a product or filling out a form.
  • Open rates – the percentage of the audience that opens the email. This can often be a good indicator of your subject line strength.
  • ROI (return on investment) – this is essentially the revenue you made as a result of the email campaign, divided by the cost of delivering the campaign.

In order to establish the success of your campaign, it is important to align the initial goals you set at the beginning with the KPIs you measured at the end. If your goal was to drive more customers to your website a positive indicator of success might be a strong clickthrough rate.

Hopefully this guide has given you the confidence and information you need to create your own successful email marketing campaign. If you are keen to try your hand at some more digital marketing, check out these blog posts for more helpful tips and tricks;

Happy marketing!

Social Media – The vital aspect of digital marketing

Social media on mobile

Social media has quickly become one of the most influential and important virtual spaces. Platforms aren’t just used for social networking, but also as an effective way to market your products and services digitally. With a huge number of online users – adding up to almost 59% of the world’s population. Not using social media as a from of digital marketing is a missed opportunity.

Here are 5 reasons as to why social media marketing is vital for your business

Engaging with your customers via social media

Social media is a good way of engaging and interacting with your customers, as well as potential customers online. The more communication there is with an audience, the higher the chance of a conversion. A two way communication stream should be set up with your businesses target audience, allowing them to know and understand that the customer always come first, and that as a brand you are there for them. Moreover, communication with customers is an easy way to gain their trust and win their attention. Thus a wider established audience will be reached.

Improved brand awareness

Social channels such as Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn can be used to increase your businesses visibility in an stress-free and profitable way. Just simply create a profile for your business and begin networking with others. Having a social media strategy will help significantly increase your brand recognition. By spending only a few hours on social media per week, it was recorded that 91% of marketers had reported that they had seen an increase in brand visibility and heightened user experience. Undoubtably, by regularly using a social platform, your business will gain a wide audience in no time at all. It is a way of spreading the word about your business among the community.

A cost-effective solution

Most social networking platforms allow for free registration to create an account. This makes it a very cost-effective approach for an advertising strategy. To achieve a greater return on investment, you must be cost-effective if you decide to use paid advertising on social channels. The ability to hold a more extensive budget for other business expenses and marketing is equally as important. It’s not particularly difficult to increase conversion rates over the course of a few months with investments of time and money. This will eventually provide you with a return on investment.

Screenshot of Hootsuite – a social management media platform, aimed at supporting social network interrogations for Twitter Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn and Youtube

Increased traffic

Additionally, another benefit of social media is that it can also boost your website’s traffic. When you share your content on social networks, you are encouraging and enticing people to click-thorough onto your website. As a result of this, the more quality content that is shared on your social account, the more inbound traffic you will generate, and the higher your conversion rate will be.

Enhanced SEO rankings

The importance of social media presence is no longer just about optimising your website and regularly updating your blog. Today, to secure a successful search engine ranking (SERP) SEO requirements are constantly changing. Consequently, it is no longer enough to simply optimise your website and regularly update your blog. When business share their content on social media, they are sending a signal to search engines that speaks to your brands legitimacy, constancy and integrity.

In conclusion, social media marketing is a B2B technology that offers significant advantages to startups and established brands. Regularly updating a social marketing strategy will increase traffic, improve SEO, build brand loyalty, boost customer satisfaction, and so much more for startups and established brands alike. You are already competing on socials, so don’t let your competitors take your potential customers. The earlier you start – the faster your business will grow.

Take a look at these marketing and social media blogs if you enjoyed this article

How Canva Can Help You Shine As A Level 3 Digital Marketing Apprentice

Level 3 Digital Marketing Apprentice

Introduction

Learn more about our favourite marketing tool Canva, and how it can help you shine as a Level 3 Digital Marketing Apprentice.

Like many occupations, Digital marketing is, well… Digital. We’re almost certain you’ve seen a plethora of advertisements for various task management services, designed to streamline workflow within a digital environment. Asana, Microsoft Teams and Google Meet are examples of these services. These platforms excel at what they do due to the need of a stable method of communication and task management within a digital organisation.

It’s safe to say, demand for these platforms has increased dramatically in the past 15 months, with the current times having a huge effect on everyone’s working situation. Infact, Microsoft teams alone saw a 50% increase in daily users in the first 6 months of the global pandemic, most likely due to the large percentage of employees working remotely.


Using Canva As A Level 3 Digital Marketing Apprentice

With over 30 million active monthly users, Canva is a well established, industry standard web tool primarily used for content creation and digital marketing strategies. It’s been made even more accessible recently with the addition of a downloadable app version I can access from my desktop and mobile device. 

Used to create social media graphics, presentations, printable documents, animated and other visual content, Canva offers users a platform for marketers to create digital content easily with in-built assistance.

Because of its unrivalled ease of use and low stress, this is a perfect tool for learners, as well as professionals.


What Is Canva Pro?

“It is essential to have good tools, but it also essential that the tools are used in the right way” – Wallace D. Wattles

Digital tools are absolutely vital for a level 3 digital marketing apprentice, and professionals. One of the most popular has unquestionably been Canva Pro, a digital marketing tool used by new and established businesses as an alternative to heavy, expensive software with a much higher skill ceiling.

Canva Pro is the paid-subscription version of Canva, which brings a number of additions at a reasonable price of £99 per year, including:

  • 75+ million premium stock photos, videos, audio and graphics
  • 420,000+ free templates with new designs daily
  • Create 1 Brand Kit and upload your own fonts and logos
  • Unlimited use of Background Remover
  • Resize designs infinitely with Magic Resize
  • Save designs as templates for your team to use
  • 100GB of cloud storage
  • Schedule social media content to 7 platforms
Digital Marketing Apprentice

Top 5 Uses For Canva Pro


75+ million premium stock photos, videos, audio and graphics

Finding the right stock photo for a project can be a time consuming and sometimes pricey investment, however with Canva Pro’s large bank of stock images, you’ll be able to find the perfect image, 100% of the time. By entering simple keywords into the search bar, you can find exactly what you’re looking for all in one location.


Unlimited use of Background Remover

Want to be able to remove an entire background from an image? Well Canva gives you the option to do that with 1 click…pretty good right? Well Canva Pro removes the limit cap on this function, allowing you to remove as many backgrounds as I want!


Upload your own fonts

A disadvantage about the regular Canva compared to Canva Pro, is the inability to upload user fonts. This can be particularly problematic when a client has specifically requested a font for a piece of marketing, ruling Canva out of the question as a resource tool. Canva Pro removes this issue by allowing users to create a Brand Kit, adding logos and fonts to the application without restriction.


Instagram Stories

With 1 billion monthly Instagram users and over 500 million daily story users, engagement has never been more important on the platform. With the sheer amount of traffic, incorporating stories into your strategy is a great way to advertise to consumers, and take up all that screen space. Stories aren’t the easiest thing to design, that’s where Canva comes in. With tons of story templates you’ll be able to harness this digital tool to save me time, and create relevant content.


Content Planner

Exclusive to Canva Pro and Canva Enterprise, introduced in 2021 is the content planner feature. If you’re familiar with content planners such as Buffer and Hootsuite, then this feature needs no explanation. However if you’re not familiar, we will provide an explanation here at ApprenticeTips.

This feature turns Canva from a tool which focuses on content curation, into a platform capable of publishing content directly to social media accounts from the application. By simply linking an account to the right project folder, with a few simple clicks we can add images to a calendar, picking and choosing the dates and times for our freshly created content to be published out to the world wide web. 


Conclusion

If you’re an aspiring or professional digital marketer, I advise this tool over many of the others. It combines versatility with ease of use, removing the stigma that good visual content can’t be achieved without heavy duty software. While Canva is a free to use application, the amount of assists and benefits the Pro Subscription brings will certainly help you shine as an apprentice!

To learn more about the Level 3 Digtial Marketing Apprentice course in its entirety, click this link.


To discover more about Canva Pro, you can visit the website here.

Not what you were looking for? We at ApprenticeTips publish regular blogs about tools and best practices for learners. We also offer training programs and apprenticeships from a huge library of options, including the level 3 digital marketing apprentice.

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Social Media Advertisements – The Do’s and Don’ts

Like a great number of us, I spend a -slightly embarrassingly – large amount of my free time on social media. You name it, Instagram, Facebook, Snapchat, TikTok, I’ve tried it all, however, its only been in the past 2 years during my time in media that I grew to understand how advertising and marketing tied in with this. If you’re like me and you like to get ahead, this article is for you as I cover the essential best practices when creating paid social media advertisements.


The Do’s

Keep it native

It’s no secret to digital marketers that the general consumer view towards advertisements isn’t favorable. The reason being because they are often felt as annoying and intrusive as the interrupt the content the user is looking at. To avoid causing negative feelings towards your ad, ensure the creative content and the format is personalised to the platform. This will avoid your creative ‘feeling’ like an advert and is likely to improve dwell time.

Make it Share-able

Match.com 2020 ‘Made in Hell’ Advert


Social media thrives on the ability to share content far and wide. The best way of generating word-of-mouth marketing is to have a creative that people want to share with their friends and family. Comedy / humour is the most common and brand safe way of doing this with users having previously responded well to a light heart-ed approach.

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Monitor Performance Frequently

With paid social media, campaign performance can change rapidly based on consumer behaviour. It’s crucial to monitor the performance of your ads so that you can make changes and optimisations. Most platforms have algorithms to help you with this but it never hurts to keep a human eye on this and make any further developments.

Keep Branding Upfront

No matter the type or format, all adverts on social media are somewhat skippable. For this reasons it’s important to keep your branding clear and upfront. In video formats, have this in the first 1-2 seconds (before you risk losing concentration) and for static creatives ensure branding is obvious and clear.

Target a specific audience

Targeting, Darts Pexel.com


One of the great benefits with social media advertisements is the vast targeting abilities that digital marketing offers. Even if your aim is towards a broad audience, narrow this down by interests / age / behaviours / demographics where you can. This will help the overall consumer intent of the audience you serve to and help reduce wasted impressions / spend thus improving ROI in the long term.

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The Don’ts

Avoid using politics to ‘promote’ your product

Social media is becoming the fastest way of spreading global movements and news. Brands are often pressured to speak up on these and take a stand which is often a great idea to align yourself with your consumers. On doing this, however, its crucial your response be as brand safe as possible. The best way of avoiding this steer clear of associating your product or encouraging users to buy from you.

This isn’t a movie

Short and simple. Social media is a fast moving reel with the average scroll rate currently at 1.7 seconds per piece of content. For this reason, the best creatives have one clear message that delivered upfront and in the first moments of the ad.

For more digital marketing advice and information for apprentices, click here.

#Don’t #Hashtag #Everything

Hashtags are a wonderful way of connecting your post with other relevant ones and highlighting key words in your caption. That being said, overusing Hashtags can result in looking desperate for reach or unprofessional. Like many things, these are best used in moderation.

Don’t obsess over the numbers


Its important to monitor performance and the larger social platforms have created specific tools for you to track users engagement and interaction with your ad. Despite this remember to consider all the valuable qualitative you gain from user responses and comments. This can be a great way of understanding consumer attitudes and building brand relations.

6 Easy Ways To Reduce Your Facebook Ad Costs

Mobile phone with the Facebook log in screen and scrabble letters spelling out social media

6 Easy Ways To Reduce Your Facebook Ad Costs

Cost pers, budgets and ad best practices can all seem very daunting and confusing when you first dip your toe into the world of sponsored Facebook ads. Lots of different elements can dictate how quickly (or slowly) your ads spend their budget, and if you have no prior social media marketing knowledge it can feel like you’re fighting a losing battle!

But never fear! We’ve got 6 easy ways to reduce your Facebook ad costs that even beginners can implement. Keep reading to find out our top tips on how to lower the cost of your Facebook advertising.

1. Understanding Your Relevance Score

Understanding your ad’s relevance score is really important when trying to reduce your cost per clicks (CPC). Ads are given scores between 1-10, 1 being the worst and 10 being the best. That score shows how ‘relevant’ your ad is to your audience’s interests and needs. For example, if you’re running ads about a new sports trainer launch but you’ve targeted people who have never expressed an interest in sports or sportswear before, or have never visited your website, then your relevance score is going to be low. This is due to lack of positive actions taken on your ad – no click throughs, likes, or comments. If your ads aren’t relevant to your audience then Facebook will charge you more to try and avoid users being annoyed with irrelevant ads.

Anything less than a score of 4 is a cause for concern and optimisations would need to be made to improve this. 5 and 6 is average and a good place to be when you’re first starting with sponsored Facebook ads. Anything above a 7 is good and where most companies should aim to be.

2. Create Highly Targeted Campaigns

Following the same theme as above, ensuring that you’re running highly targeted campaigns is another great way to reduce your Facebook ad costs. By doing this you know exactly who you’re targeting and will be able to tailor ad copy, creative and offers to suit their needs and wants. You can target by age, gender, location, interests and behaviours, and you can also create Lookallike audiences (LALs) to reach further potential customers. The more targeted your audience is, the more likely they are to be interested in what you’re offering and engage with your ad, taking positive actions on it therefore helping to lower your CPC.

A lady on Facebook Ads Manager while looking at her phone

3. Retarget Previous Engagers

Retargeting engagers of your previous ads is such a great way of lowering Facebook ad costs. Not only does it ensure that the people you’re targeting are interested in what you’re offering, it also means that they are a valuable pool of people having taken positive actions previously.

You can retarget people in many ways. The most common one is to show users ads containing products they browsed or added to cart on your website but never bought. You can also import your CRM data and retarget customers who have bought specific products or attended previous events. For example, during the Black Friday period you can make a custom audience containing the data of people who bought products from you last Black Friday and target them with your new sales message. As they have previously bought with you during the same period last year they’re more likely to purchase again this year.

4.  Increase Your CTR

Focussing on increasing your click through rate (CTR) will help to increase your relevance score and therefore lower your Facebook ad costs. Some simple ways to do this include:

  • Using appropriate Call To Action (CTA) buttons. ‘Learn More’ will sometimes drive higher click through rates compared to ‘Shop Now’ for cold audiences that don’t trust your brand yet.
  • Write simple copy that’s easy for the user to read and gets straight to the point. Don’t leave them guessing what the ad is about or what they need to do next, they’ll just keep scrolling. Your copy needs to be eye-catching, engaging and explain exactly why the user should click on your ad.  
  • Keep your ad frequency low. Frequency is how often your ad is served to a person. If it’s too high then people will get bored, annoyed or even report your ad.

5. A/B Test Campaigns

A/B testing campaigns is a really useful way to learn what type of content your audiences respond best to. Do they prefer video content, carousels, shorter copy? To do this you need to create different versions of the same ad, changing one element on each ad. This will show you what your audiences prefer and allow you to run those ads in the future while turning off the not as successful ads. This keeps frequency down, engagement up, and your spending low.

A person on Facebook on their laptop and mobile phone

6. Budget Optimisation

Probably one of the easiest ways to lower your Facebook ad costs is to select ‘budget optimisation’ when setting up your ad campaigns. When you do this, it gives Facebook permission to push budget towards the most successful ads within the campaign. This means you don’t waste money on ads that aren’t achieving results and you can turn them off. Facebook does the work for you, what more could you want?!

And there you have it, 6 easy ways to reduce your Facebook ad costs and getting the most results out of the budget you have! Visit Facebook’s Business page to learn more about creating campaigns and advertising on Facebook.

Find Out More About Digital Marketing Apprenticeships

Fancy finding out more about how to get into the Digital marketing space by doing an apprenticeship? Read the Level 3 Digital Marketer Occupational Brief and Assessment Plan to learn more.