Showing: 1 - 10 of 14 Results

How to Follow Up With Sales Leads: 8 Best Practices to Land More Clients

It’s go time! Your marketing campaigns have paid off and you’ve been inundated with fresh leads to hopefully turn into sales. That last part hinges on your ability to strategically and effectively follow up on those leads without letting any fall by the wayside or scare them off by coming on too strongly. And effectively following up means doing so multiple times. According to Marketing Donut, 80% of sales leads require five follow-ups after the initial contact, but only 8% of salespeople actually follow up this many times. 

Five times may sound like a lot, but if you approach your leads in the right manner, you can effectively communicate the right messaging to them that puts you in their favor. In this post, we’re going to cover some tips on how to properly follow up with leads and increase your odds of turning them into repeat customers, including:

Segment your leads
Respond in a timely fashion
Nurture leads with useful content
Personalize your communication
Use various communication channels
Create a follow-up schedule
Track communications
Learn when to abandon lost causes
Sales lead follow-up best practices

As you may already know, it’s not only about when you follow up with your leads but also how you follow up with them. You need to consider their stage in your funnel, their pain points and needs, and the timing of your communication. Here are some best practices to help you effectively follow up with sales leads and prospects to win more business.

1. Segment your leads

Each type of lead will require a different level of messaging. Depending on how the lead came to you, it may be hot and ready to close or may need a bit of warming. For example, a lead that comes to you by way of an email opt-in campaign as opposed to a lead that filled out a ‘contact me’ form on your webpage are at different points in the sales funnel and should be approached accordingly.

Organize the leads into at least three groups: Hot, warm, and cold. Seems a bit remedial, but trust us, you’ll want to take note of the leads’ temperatures so that you don’t treat them like one size fits all.

If you’re interested in doing a more robust lead scoring initiative, there are software programs available that will separate your leads based on point values you assign to various consumer behaviors. Move leads from group to group as you get to know them better and move them closer to becoming a paying client.

2. Respond in a timely fashion

Arrange for a thank you or welcome email or phone call to be made within 12-24 hours after a lead comes in. Offer to answer any questions they may have to demonstrate the care and attention you provide to each customer.

3. Nurture your leads with useful content

As is the case with any form of communication with your audience members, no matter what stage of the funnel they’re in, you should always focus on adding value. Blog posts, infographics, helpful stats, success stories, and downloadable guides are all great options. Your leads aren’t going to become customers after one interaction, so focus on nurturing the lead, or “warming” them. Rather than trying to get them to act in the form of converting into a customer, focus on smaller steps, like downloading that guide or visiting that blog post.

Image source

4. Personalize your communication

As you can see in the email example above, it’s a good idea to personalize your correspondence by including the recipient’s name in your emails, sending them information based on the pages visited on your website, or responding personally to an online inquiry instead of pushing canned responses.

5. Use various communication channels

Leads have a preferred way of communicating and quite frankly, you have no idea what that is at this point. Use social media, email, snail-mail, and phone calls to connect with potential clients.

We don’t mean to reach out directly using every single communication tool you have! Just be sure that you’re readily available no matter your lead’s preferred medium. So, respond to social media messages quickly, answer your phone and return calls promptly, and check your inbox.

Here are a few of the communication methods you may try out:

Email: Emails are slightly less invasive than phone calls, and give the lead the opportunity to read and respond at their convenience. Yet given how many emails we get each day, the chances of your email getting lost in the shuffle are high, so it’s important to follow up more than once. In your follow-ups, be sure to use intriguing and appropriate subject lines, and to offer useful content rather than just pitching your offerings.

Phone: Phone call conversations are a great way to show your prospect your expertise and demonstrate that you want what’s best for them. However, you don’t have the phone equivalent of an email subject line to catch your prospect’s attention. In fact, you have the opposite–a foreign number appearing on their phone. With the phone call approach, it’s important that you nail down your voicemail message so that you give your prospect a reason to call you back. Like emails, you’ll also need to call more than once.

Text message: Sending text messages may be better for leads with whom you’ve already communicated. Pay close attention to your conversations with them and base your follow up texts on those needs.

Image source

6. Create a follow-up schedule

Remember, it typically requires 7-10 touches before a conversion happens. Creating a follow-up schedule will ensure you remain consistent with your communications and prevent you from letting the leads you worked so hard to attain fall through the cracks. Your communications calendar should aim to keep you top of mind with your leads but not become a nuisance.

For example, your schedule might look like this:

Emails: once per week
Phone calls: once per month
Face to face: once per quarter
Anything more than that and you run the risk of getting the brush off.

Image source

7. Track communications

If you have a CRM (contact/customer relation management) system, you’re way ahead of the game. CRM’s allow you to keep a record of all customer outreach and the results of those communications. If you don’t have a CRM, no worries – that’s what Excel is for! Simply create a spreadsheet that includes your prospects’ contact information and notes regarding the dates and methods used to nurture those leads.

From LOCALiQ’s Client Center CRM

8. Learn when to abandon lost causes

Qualifying your leads is a very important step and should be done as early as possible. Don’t get trigger happy and abandon leads because they may take a bit of work to close, but be smart about what you’re chasing down. Three qualifying categories to consider:

Do they have the means to make a purchase?
Are they motivated?
Are they the decision-maker?
If you discover they’re not qualified at this time, don’t toss their info! Put them in a “to be followed up with later” file and create a campaign to target those leads which you’ve put on the back burner down the road when their circumstances may have changed.

Follow up with your sales leads the right way

Lead prospecting is all about remaining in front of your clients without getting on their bad side … a sort of omnipresence, if you will. Your goal shouldn’t necessarily be to convince them to buy, but rather to be there when they’re ready to buy. This type of reliability bodes well for your brand and makes those leads feel respected and valued. What better way to cultivate your customer base than that?

How (+ When & Why) to Update Your Google Business Listing

Your Google business listing (known by Google as your Business Profile) is a free listing you can create to help get your business found in more local searches, rank higher than your competitors, and get chosen by more customers. However, it’s not just a set it and forget it listing. If you want to stay at the top of results, you need to optimize and maintain your listing, just as you would with your website.

So how do you make changes to your Google business listing to keep it up to date and SEO-friendly? That’s what we’ll answer in this post. We’ll cover:
How to list and claim your business on Google in the first place.
How to edit, update, and make changes to your contact information, hours, attributes, and more.
When and why update your Google listing, plus more FAQs.
How do I list my business on Google in the first place?
This post covers why you should update your Google business listing, when to make these updates, and covers the steps for common edits and changes such as hours, phone number, categories, and attributes. However, you may first be wondering how to list your business on Google in the first place. You also can’t make edits and updates to your listing unless you have claimed it. So before we begin, we’re going to cover how to list your business on Google and how to claim your business on Google. All of this is done through your Google My Business account.
Here’s how to create a Google listing, which you will need to claim before making any changes or updates.
For more detailed instructions on creating and claiming your Google business listing, head here.
Create a Google account
Search for your business on Google Maps
If your business shows up, no action is needed, your listing has been created
If your business does not show up, click “add a place”
Fill in your information, click “submit”
Check your email

How do I claim my Google listing?
As mentioned above, you need to claim your listing before you want to make edits, updates, or changes. Here’s how to claim your listing once it’s been created:
Search for your business in Google Maps
Select your business
Select “Claim this business”
If you created the listing, you can click “claim” and get instant access to your profile
If you did not create the listing, you will have to verify ownership through postcard, phone call, or email

How do I edit, update, and make changes to my Google business listing?
The sections below will go into more detail on specific edits and updates you may want to make, but most of them require the same initial steps. These include:
Log into your Google My Business account (go to google.com/business and make sure you’re logged into the Google account you created for your business).
Select “Info”
Select the section you want to edit
Select the pencil icon to add or edit
Make your edits
Select “Apply”

How long does it take Google to change my listing information?
Some changes to your Google My Business listing are automatic, while others, especially those that involve removing information, can take up to 60 days. Google crawls the web regularly to update its index, but it’s got a lot of material to go through! Keep in mind also that some of the information on your Google My Business listing cannot be edited, updated, or removed, as it comes from other sources.
Why update my Google business listing?
As mentioned above, updates and changes are among the essential Google My Business optimizations you can make to rank higher in local searches. The more active you are on the platform, the more signals you send to Google that your listing is accurate and trustworthy. The more Google trusts you, the higher you will rank on Google Maps and the local section of Google search. With a higher rank, you can enjoy the following benefits:
Get discovered
This benefit has to do with editing your category in Google My Business.  By choosing a category, you enable your business to get discovered by people who are searching for the product or service you offer rather than your specific business name (think about how many customers don’t yet know you exist). This is especially helpful for businesses whose name doesn’t imply their offering. For example, “Sam’s Auto Repair” is pretty straightforward, but “Happy Trails” could be a dog walking service, hiking tour company, or a bike path paving company. Categorizing your business’s Google listing is an easy way to get more of the right people to learn that you exist.
Further your reach
When you were a kid and you had a lemonade stand, where did you set it up? Not in the backyard or in the house, but on the street. Why? Because that’s where people are. The same concept holds true for businesses today. If you want to be seen, you need to be where people are; and today, people are online.
In fact, according to Google, 84% of consumers use their computer or tablet to search for local businesses online, and 88% use their smartphone. By creating and maintaining your Google business listing, you can ensure that your business reaches as many consumers as possible where they are spending a lot of their time.
Drive leads
Unlike your lemonade stand from childhood, people are not just driving by—they’re actively searching for businesses like yours. They’re on Google Maps and Google Search, searching for products and services near them and doing research to compare businesses. In order to get found by the people who have the intent to buy from you, you’ve got to update your Google listing.

Attract customers
According to the same study above, 34% of consumers who find a business through local search on their computer or tablet end up at its physical location, and the rate is even higher (50%) for those who search on mobile phones. In addition, 18% of local searches lead to a purchase within a day, versus only 7% of non-local searches. This means that the easier your business is to find online, the more likely it is that a customer will make a purchase within a day of searching for your business. The data shows that something as simple as a Google listing update can increase traffic to your store and boost sales.
Improve your SEO
Many people are intimidated by SEO (search engine optimization), but SEO can be done in bite-sized pieces. One of the easiest ways to improve your local SEO is to update your Google listing and make sure the information in the rest of your listings is identical to that of your Google listing.
Google is constantly crawling the internet for updated information in order to provide the most accurate and reliable search results. The more consistent your contact information is across the web, the more favor you’ll win in Google’s eyes. 
Boost exposure
Search engines are not the only tool people use to find products and services they need. There are hundreds of apps and directories out there today that are more specifically directing people to the right destination for them. However, these platforms build their databases by crawling the web and relying on larger search engines to gather this information, such as Google. As a result, many of the listings in these smaller but more commonly used directories contain information that has trickled down through Google business listings. Update your Google listing to make sure that the hundreds of other applications out there will be populated with the right information and can multiply your reach.
Having a Google business listing will do nothing to benefit your business unless it is accurate, consistent, and up to date. Do your job of maintaining your business listing so that Google can do its job of helping to get your business found by the people looking for it. More information for more people means growth for your business and more happy customers!
When should I update my Google business listing?
There are many different circumstances that will call for you to update or make edits to your Google business listing. Below are just a few.
Business moving or relocation
If you’re moving the location of your business, word of mouth will inform some, but not all. Announcing your move on social media will inform more, but not for long, as the posts will eventually get buried under new ones. In order to prevent the loss of existing customers and to promote the increase of new customers, update your Google business listing to ensure a seamless transition.
Existing customers and community members may be aware of your new location, but what about future customers and community members? They won’t know to visit your old location to find your new location. You don’t even exist to them yet! This is why it’s crucial to update your business listing with any and all changes to your information as soon as possible. Even the smallest changes need to be reported, such as to a different suite or floor within the same building. Accuracy is crucial in getting online listings and search engines to benefit your business.
Multiple business locations
Having multiple locations can be confusing for search engines and people. Make sure that you update and verify each individual listing within your Google account to contain information specific to that location.

Image source
Inaccurate business information
Just as a complete and accurate listing can drive traffic to your website and store, an inaccurate or incomplete listing can drive customers away. Yikes! Regardless of how the inaccuracies occurred, consumers will automatically attribute them to deficiencies or incompetencies on your part. Be sure to stay on top of your listing and fix any erroneous information that may appear.
No website
Google uses your website and online listings to gauge your credibility and determine how high it can rank you in results. Having a website is a must, but if you do not have one, you can at least perfect your Google My Business profile so that consumers can learn about your business via search results pages.
How to change your business hours on Google
Consumers like to quickly check Google to ensure a business is open before they plan their visit. Don’t risk losing business simply because your hours are not listed.
Google may have added the hours, but it’s a good idea to double-check and confirm them. Incorrect hours can easily lead to unhappy customers. To add or edit hours of operation:
Log into your Google My Business account
Select Info
Look for the clock icon
Click on the pencil icon to add or edit
Add hours for every day of the week
Click Apply

How to update your phone number on Google
Your phone number is an important component of your business profile. Consumers may have questions before deciding to visit your business. Plus, many are searching on mobile phones. Making a quick call is much easier when your phone number is included directly on your Google listing. Don’t risk losing customers that don’t want to search around for this information. To add, edit, or update your phone number on Google:
Log into your Google My Business account
Choose Info
Look for the phone icon and click on the pencil icon to edit
Add the phone number
Click Apply

How to add and update Google My Business categories
The industry and service categories you choose on Google are critical to ensuring the right customers are finding your business in Google Search and Maps. To add, update, or edit your categories in Google My Business:
Log into your Google My Business account
Choose Info
Edit the category information that is listed under the business name
Select an accurate primary category, and add any additional categories that apply
Click Apply

Tips for selecting your Google My Business categories
More categories increase your chances of being included in search results. However, it’s important to only choose additional categories if these accurately describe your business.
The primary category you choose should be the one that best describes your business. This ensures that your business can be included in both specific and broad searches. For example, when you choose the category “Indian Restaurant” your business can be included in searches for “indian restaurant” and “restaurant”.
The categories you select also determine some of the additional features that Google makes available in the listing, especially attributes. Attributes can further help you get more exposure when these get matched to consumer searches.
How to edit attributes in your Google business listing
Attributes are the smaller details about your business that highlight your best or most important features, distinguish you from competitors, and help customers decide whether to choose you. They show up below your business description and give customers a better idea of specific offerings, payment options, accommodations, and more. There are different groups of attributes based on the category of your business falls. For example:
Hair salons: takes walk-ins, accepts credit cards
Restaurants: outdoor seating, gluten-free options, casual atmosphere
Dry cleaners: drive-through, tailoring services
The more information you provide to Google, the better Google can match you to relevant searches in Google Search and on Google Maps. Some attributes automatically appear based on feedback from customers, while others you will select manually.
To edit the attributes in your Google My Business Listing via desktop:
Log into your Google My Business account
Choose Info
Look for Add attributes next to the tag icon and click on the pencil to edit
Review and select attributes for your business
Attributes that have not been set are shown with a “+” symbol
Important: Click or tap twice if an attribute does not apply.

To edit the attributes in your Google My Business Listing via mobile
Go to the Google My Business mobile app
Tap Profile, then Edit
In the Attributes section, tap Edit
Update your attributes then tap Apply
Information you cannot change
There are some sections in your Google My Business profile that you can’t change. For example, you cannot edit or remove reviews or review snippets. You also cannot edit the editorial summary of your business, which is created by Google’s writers. You also cannot edit the keywords that appear next to your business. Google purposely mixes information you supply with information that your customers and third parties supply, to give a full picture of your business. If you do find that any of the information beyond your control is inaccurate, contact Google to let them know.

20+ Free April Marketing Ideas to Freshen Up Your Content Calendar

The spring is an excellent time to pollenate your Instagram feed with bright photos and to take advantage of all of the holidays and promotional opportunities it offers. There’s National Grilled Cheese Day, Take Your Child to Work Day, Autism Awareness Month, Sexual Assault Awareness Month, and more. These observances and themes provide opportunities for you to connect with your customers, express your voice and values, and creatively engage your audience—especially on social media.

In this post, we’re going to provide a list of April themes, holidays, and awareness causes as well as real examples from businesses across various industries to help give you some creative inspiration. So let’s get into it.
And for ideas for the whole year, check out this awesome marketing calendar by our friends at LOCALiQ.
April holidays and awareness causes
Here is a list of the many holidays and national days celebrated in April that can make for creative marketing for your local business:
April Fool’s Day
Easter Sunday
World Party Day
Walk to Work Day
World Health Day
Siblings Day
National Grilled Cheese Day
Tax Day
High Five Day
Get to Know Your Customer Day
Earth Day
Picnic Day
Denim Day
Administrative Professionals’ Day
Take Your Child to Work Day
Arbor Day
Email Debt Forgiveness Day
Themes and awareness causes that last throughout the month of  April include:
Prom Season
Financial Literacy
Planet Earth
Sexual Assault
Child Abuse
Autism
Volunteering
Donate Life
Creative April marketing ideas and examples
Between your website, blog, social media accounts, and Google Business Profile, there are plenty of channels by which you can share your April content and promotions. Below you’ll find a plethora of creative April-themed ideas from real businesses just like yours.
1. Autism Awareness Month
Autism affects 1 in 59 children in the United States. If you or someone you love is affected by autism, this is a great opportunity to raise awareness by getting involved in activities to give back to the community or raising money to donate to an organization dedicated to autism. Here’s a link to get involved in an event near you. Or you can show your support with applicable products, as with the example below:

2. National Child Abuse Prevention Month
Show your support for National Child Abuse Prevention Month with a blue pinwheel, which is the national symbol for the cause.

Or plant a pinwheel garden at your place of business and share it with your followers in hopes of raising awareness.

3. Financial Literacy Month
In honor of Financial Literacy Month, publish a blog post on a finance-related topic. Or, encourage followers to start a conversation about how they’d choose to spend extra cash if it fell into their laps. These comments could get pretty creative!

4. Prom season
Many types of businesses can figure out a post to tap into the prom season frenzy. This restaurant is cashing in on the popularity of “promposals”.

Think about posting something useful for parents who may be concerned about the goings-on of prom night…providing helpful information is appreciated by your followers – no one wants to be sold to 24/7.

If you happen to have an offering that is right in line with prom season, don’t be shy about promoting yourself either.

5. April Fool’s Day
Have some fun with your marketing on April 1. April Fools Day is the perfect excuse to play a practical joke on your customers—just be sure to keep things light and fun. Fitness centers can offer calorie-free cheeseburgers, preschools can offer a class for teaching ABCs to dogs, and massage studios can offer touch-free massages. These are all obvious jokes related to your business. Another way to market your business for April Fools Day is to run a competition for the best prank, or to share photos of your employees partaking in the fun.

6. National Siblings Day
If you run a family business don’t forget about National Sibling Day. Celebrate your togetherness while promoting your business. Or simply provide ideas on ways to honor the day.

If applicable, run promotions specific to siblings with two-for-one deals. Or you can celebrate by simply snapping pics of all the siblings that come to your location and posting to social media.

7. The Boston Marathon
WordStream is based in Boston so we’re huge supporters of the marathon, but you don’t have to be local to support it. Show your support for local athletes who are running or traveling with family members running in the marathon. Fitness centers should show their support across the country for the marathoners. Local restaurants can offer “carb loading” pre-marathon meals and massage studios can offer discounts to runners.
8. Administrative Professionals Day
Make sure to thank your support staff on Administrative Professionals Day. This is a good way to make your business and brand personal on social media and on your blog. Highlight what your support staff does for your business and interview them on your blog or on a video. Customers who interact with support staff will love seeing them in the spotlight!
9. National Grilled Cheese Day
Everyone loves grilled cheese sandwiches so you should absolutely find a way to incorporate a National Grilled Cheese Day post into your feed—whether you own a restaurant or not! See how these non-food related businesses made it work:

 

10. National High Five Day
On National High Five Day, ask your customers to pose for a #highfive and tag them. They’ll likely repost on their own feeds and get you some more visibility.

You could also up your Facebook following by inviting customers to tag people they’d like to give a virtual high five.

Or give your own virtual high five as a thank you or special shout out to customers, vendors, or even a cause you support.

If you’re up for it, think about running a promo that coincides with the number five…it doesn’t all have to be about a literal high five!

11. Take Your Child to Work Day
If you have kids, bring them to work on this day and tell your customers about it. This is a great way to teach your child about starting and running a business and inspire them to follow their dreams.
Take their picture and post it on social media, encouraging customers to come in and say hello. Make your child the “boss” of the day. Posting pictures or stories on social media is a great way to engage customers and to personalize your brand. Plus, you can show off your adorable children!

12. Earth Day
Earth Day and Arbor Day are all about nature and trees. Use these holidays as a marketing opportunity for your business. Flower shops can host a class or write a blog about reusing dried flowers for decor, interior designers can provide tips about decorating with nature, and fitness centers can take classes outside for a hike or workout that appreciates nature.
13. Easter and Passover
Restaurants, of course, can host Easter brunch or advertise their Kosher for Passover menu items. Photographers can run Easter picture specials. Daycares can make a special day for children to take pictures with the Easter bunny. Fitness centers can have a family fun day with an Easter egg hunt. Bakeries can post their themed baked goods to increase their orders. Or, run a “peeps” special like this business did:

Our friends at LOCALiQ have plenty more Easter marketing ideas for you to check out.
14. Tax Day
Tax Day is a day that people either love (because they’re getting a refund) or hate (because they owe money). This is prime time for accountants to market their business—if they haven’t already. But other types of businesses can benefit from Tax Day as well.
Restaurants and bars can host post Tax Day parties. Retail stores can have after Tax Day promotions to help people looking to spend their refund. Filing taxes is stressful, so fitness centers or yoga studios can use this as an opportunity to have a boot camp class or a special yoga class. For a little extra fun, incorporate a playlist of money songs.
Or you can do something fun with numbers, like this restaurant did:

15. Spring cleaning
Spring cleaning is high time for cleaning services, organizers, and interior designers. Use this as an opportunity to give your customers and potential customers tips on how they can spruce up their house for the new season.
Cleaning Services should offer promotions or referrals for new or current customers to jump-start business for the warmer weather. Contractors or construction services should blog or post videos about common issues that arise in the spring. If you’re getting started on a blog, spring cleaning is a great topic for writing your first blog post.
16. Get to Know Your Customers Day
Get to Know Your Customer Day occurs on the third Thursday of the first month of each quarter, so January, April, July, and October—and is, of course, a great opportunity for interacting with your customers. Post questions on Facebook that engage them in a conversation. Ask for their opinions to help improve your services, what they like about your business, etc.

 

17. Denim Day
Denim Day is associated with Sexual Assault Awareness. Take a break from self-promotion and educate your followers on the history of the holiday.

Or show your support for victims of sexual assault by asking employees to wear denim to work on this day.
Creatively market your business this April
From spring cleaning and mother Earth to grilled cheese sandwiches and high fives, there are plenty of opportunities to market your business this April. And if you’re looking for more monthly marketing ideas, we’ve got plenty of ’em:

7 Easy Ways to Get More Traffic from Evergreen Content

Evergreen content is a staple in good SEO. A post or guide that targets a solid volume keyword, contains tips that remain relevant over time, and includes helpful images can accumulate more and more traffic to your site each year. It’s the gift that keeps on giving!

But even the most evergreen content starts to show its age, and there does come a time when that content gets slightly outdated.
That being said, I’m going to share with you how to give your content a nice refresh to keep your SEO in check and continue earning favor in both Google’s and your audience’s eyes.
We’ll cover a number of easy tips and tactics to help your evergreen content attract more free traffic, including:
Targeting new terms
Adding more/newer information
Updating links
Title changes, and much more
So let’s dive in.
Why refresh evergreen content?
The obvious reason behind refreshing content is because, well, you should refresh anything that expires or gets stale. But in SEO terms and with evergreen content, there is more to it.
First of all, it doesn’t make sense to write an entirely new post on the same keyword. Those two posts will then compete with one another and dilute each other’s SEO “juice.”
Second of all, if the piece is truly evergreen, it has accumulated quality traffic and backlinks over time. It’s better to build on what you have than to start a new post from scratch.
And finally, because Google prefers accurate and fresh content. This is nothing new—it’s been around since the “Freshness” Update way back in 2011.
7 ways to refresh and reoptimize old content for better SEO
There are many elements to an evergreen blog post or guide that can be improved to help you get more mileage out of your content. Here are seven of them you can try.
1. Revisit your keywords
Keyword targeting is the practice of catering a piece of content around a particular word or phrase—namely, one that your ideal customers are looking up when in search of your products or services. This allows your business to get in front of them when they have intent to learn, engage, or buy.
If your content contains solid information but isn’t targeted at a particular word or phrase, do your keyword research and identify a keyword you can target. There are plenty of keyword research tools to help you identify popular and relevant terms. Once you’ve identified a keyword to target, include it in the title, subheadings, and image tags of the post to signal to Google what you’re trying to rank for. If you’re already targeting a keyword, there are still adjustments you can make when refreshing your content. For example:
Target related terms
Search for the keyword your content is currently targeting and see if there are related or new terms you may want to include in your piece to enhance its relevance. The “People also ask” results can also provide ideas on new sections or related terms to cover. 

Target location
Another way to target new terms is to make the piece more location-specific. For example, if you are an event planner and you’ve written a post on how to choose a venue, you may want to add a new section to your content that lists popular venues in your particular area.
Get more specific
A third way to strengthen the targeting of your content is to target the same keyword for different themes. For example, if you’re an accountant and have written a post on general tax tips, you could add in sections that target vertical-specific terms in line with the types of clients you serve, such as with “tax tips for real estate agents,” “tax tips for lawyers,” “tax tips for for senior citizens,” and so on.
Shift the focus onto a trend
One final idea is to make adjustments or include a new section in the post that caters to emerging trends. This idea, of course, comes from the current times. So much has changed in the last year due to the pandemic, and consumer needs are shifting, so your content may gain more traffic if it is refocused on new priorities.

2. Add (or remove) information
If your piece is already well-focused and you’re not looking to shift the targeting, you can always tackle the information stored within the body of the post. Fortunately, information is abundant in today’s digital and connected world. In fact, there are 2.5 quintillion bytes of data created each day. Let’s go over some ways you can upgrade the information in your content when giving it a spruce-up.
Cross-check resources
For tools and resources posts, double-check each resource you’ve mentioned. Some platforms go cold, get renamed, or outperformed by better ones. Do your research and see if you can take any old resources out of your list and add any new ones.
Add in new strategies
For tips and strategies posts, see if you can add a new strategy or two in. Technology is always evolving (digital and physical), and your offerings may change. For example, if you run a roofing company and you’ve written on must-have tools for roof repair, you may want to add in a new material or method you’ve added to your arsenal.
Insert stats
For just about any post, you can always add stats to support the information you are providing. New studies are coming out all of the time, and it can be beneficial to your site to link to other sites with solid credibility.

Include customer quotes
You can also add in supporting stories, testimonials, or reviews from customers. If you’re a wedding planner and you’ve written about the best venues in a particular area, add in quotes (with their permission) by your clients who have used those venues.
Add real results
Even better than supporting quotes is supporting data. Discussing how a particular clean energy appliance saved one of your customers $X in electricity will speak for itself.
Provide action items
One last tip is to enhance the content with actionability. If your content covers the benefits of a particular strategy or method, talk about how to get started with it. If you’ve provided a roundup of products, include links as to where these products can be found.
Two additional notes on refreshing the information in your content:
If you notice that a particular content piece has decreased in ranking, take a look at what the top ranking pieces are saying about the topic to make sure you’re covering the right concepts.
For announcement, milestone, and data posts, it’s best to keep the content as is, as a historical record. If you have new updates or announcements, you can publish them as new posts and refer/link back to the previous announcements to keep the story cohesive.

3. Check your visuals
Visual marketing is a major factor in differentiating your brand from competitors. Let’s go over some ways to refresh your content in this regard.
Add images
First and foremost, if your content does not contain images, add them! This is one of the best things you can do to revive old content. Aside from having images, you may want to try adding in a video or infographic to encapsulate the post as a whole or even one part of it. You can then update your title with (+Infographic) or (With Explainer Video) to make the content stand out. If you already have images in your content, you’re not off the hook. Read on.
Check for breaks
Your next step is to check to make sure your existing images are optimized. Are they displaying properly and correctly sized? Content management systems upgrade to new versions and sometimes images get lost in the shuffle. Large images can slow down page load speed and hurt your ranking. And also because there’s no better way to tarnish a solid piece of content with broken image icons that display only the alt text.

Also, if you threw a post up in a hurry or created it before you knew to add keywords in the file name or alt tags, now is a good time to go back and rectify that.
Update screenshots
Updating screenshots is especially important if you’ve written how-to’s for software and online platforms, as their interfaces change frequently. When a consumer wants to know how to do something, visuals are often the first thing they seek out, and if they see that your screenshots are outdated, they’re likely to exit the post and look for one with images that matches what they’re seeing.
Of course, you can’t do this with every post. On WordStream, for example, we have countless how-to’s on Google Ads, Facebook ads, Instagram, and more—all of which are rapidly evolving platforms. In our case, we have to prioritize updating images on our top-performing content.
Replace stock images
Another way to refresh your images is to replace stock images with real ones. Whether you’re a flooring specialist, event planner, or dog sitter, start taking photos of the actual work you’re doing, of before-and-afters, of happy customers, and incorporate them into your content.

Real images will always win out over stock images.
If you don’t have real images handy (now’s a good time to start!), try a hashtag search on social media. You can find a recent and relevant image for just about anything under the sun on these platforms. Another idea is to use screenshots from your video tutorials. While video is a preferred form of content, there are still several queries and topics for which a consumer may just want to quickly scroll through some visuals to get the gist of what to do. Here are some more tips on creating better content marketing images.
Quick recap on refreshing images:
Add videos and infographics too (or screenshots from them).
Check size, file name, alt tags.
Update old interface screenshots.
Replace stock photos with real photos.
Prioritize image replacement for top-performing posts.
4. Diversify your format
The best content to create for SEO is long-form content (1200 words or longer). Having a sufficient word count of quality content gives ample opportunities to reinforce to Google that your article thoroughly answers the questions that people are seeking when they type in the particular keyword you are ranking for. However, Google isn’t just interested in how much information you provide. It keeps track of how long readers are staying on your page as well.
Readers often like to scroll through a page first to assess whether it’s worth their time to stay on it, and if it’s just paragraphs of text, they can’t do this quickly. If your post isn’t getting a lot of traffic or engagement, go back in and break up the content into sections with clear headers (that target long-tail keywords). Also, enhance each section with bullets, lists, key takeaways, and examples to highlight your main points. Not only will this affirm for your reader that this is the right page for them, but it will also keep them engaged longer. Furthermore, this type of formatting can increase the chances of your post’s content becoming a featured snippet or other rich result on the SERP.img
Even just adding a key takeaway element to each section that provides the short version or a brief list for the information provided can be helpful here.
5. Tweak your titles
There are a few reasons why your blog post title might need some work. For one (and most obvious), if you’re adding new tips or taking away irrelevant ones, you’ll need to change the number in the title. This is simple enough, but is the title of your blog post overlaid on the feature image? Make sure to change that. Is it in the URL? You don’t want to change the URL, since you’re trying to preserve traffic data and measure the impact of your improvements—but what you can do moving forward is make sure you leave the number out of the URL. This way you can prevent a mismatch of the URL and title in the SERP.

With this URL, more strategies can be added onto the post without causing a discrepancy.
Another change you may make to the title is if you’ve made significant changes to the information, you may even want to append to your title the current month or year in brackets or “updated for [the current year].” When online searchers see a date in the title, they are much more likely to click. More clicks can help raise your rank above competitors who haven’t yet refreshed their content.
Most importantly, can your title use some more compelling or eye-catching copy? Coming up with interesting titles is a bit of an art. Here are some improvements you can make when refreshing your titles for better SEO:
Make it actionable
Make the title actionable so that readers can be assured that they’ll get value from the content. For example, “8 Benefits of Green Tea” could become “8 Reasons to Try Green Tea Now.” With some action and a little bit of urgency, you can appeal to that instant gratification we all love. An even simpler strategy is to add on to the title phrases like “(+ How to Do It)” or “(Plus Tips from the Pros).”
Include a number
Whenever possible, try to encapsulate your content into something quantifiable. For example,
10 Tips for Writing a Successful Resume
How to Become a Freelancer in 5 Steps
Your 5-Minute Guide to Better SEO
Readers like to be able to have some predictability in the content they consume, and also like to feel a sense of accomplishment as they read.
Change out adjectives
Try out new adjectives to express unique value. Do you use “effective,” “creative,” or “useful” a lot? Try switching it up with “unusual,” “brilliant,” or “that you haven’t thought of.”
Additional headline words to try:
Best
Surprisingly Easy
Top Rated
Expert-Approved
Secret
In the SERP below, the headlines contain numbers, dates and descriptive words to catch the reader’s attention.

Lastly, check over the basics. Is the exact keyword you are targeting in the title, or a slight variation? Is it at the beginning of the title or is it getting cut off at the end. The SERP will only display the first 70 characters in a title, so keep this in mind. There are plenty of SERP title tester tools to help you check, like this one from Moz.
6. Change up your meta description
The meta description is the small description of your page that appears in the SERP. It provides a brief summary of what the article is about, which, depending on the copy, can encourage searchers to either click or skip your post. If you’ve followed the steps above and upgraded your content, it’s likely that your meta description may also need a refresh.
Have you made the post more actionable? Talk about what the reader can take away from the post.
Have you added in related keywords? Add those to your description. This is especially important since Google bolds the keywords you searched in the meta description.
Is the description too short? List out a few of the bullet points in the article to give a preview of what you’ll cover.
7. Edit your links
There are a few different ways you can use links to refresh your content.
Add new links
First, if you’ve been steadily creating blog posts and guides, add in links to your newer content. Internal links help to keep readers on your site longer, and also create more pathways by which Google can crawl your site. The more easily it can scan your site and understand how the pages relate to one another, the better your SEO.
Build new links to the page from new content
Second, go through your newer pieces that are performing well and link to the post you are refreshing in the content.
Fix broken links
This is also a good time to test out the existing links in your content to make sure they aren’t broken. Google doesn’t like dead ends!

A new link we recently added to an old post with regard to the latest change in modified broad match.
Refresh old content with these 7 tricks
As you now can see, even evergreen content depreciates over time. But you can give it a facelift to preserve the value it brings to readers and the traffic it drives to your website. Let’s recap the strategies covered in this post.
Revisit your keywords
Add (or remove) information
Check your visuals
Revisit your format
Tweak your titles
Edit your meta description
Add in new links
Once you’ve refreshed your content, be sure to share it on social media and in your email newsletter to give it an additional traffic boost!

20 Creative Call to Action Examples for Email Newsletter Signups

Though it is one of the older digital marketing strategies, email marketing is still around because it works. Businesses use this versatile platform to generate and nurture leads, strengthen client relationships, build their audience, and obtain more customers. So how do they get these email addresses in the first place? They ask. Placing call to action phrases and buttons on your website and other forms of content is a great way to collect email addresses to build your email list. Below are 20 real examples of email signup calls to action that help to illustrate call to action best practices.
Call to action examples for email signups
At this point, we’ve defined call to action and provided some call to action examples. Now it’s time to provide some visual examples for email signups specifically, to help you build your list. 
1. Nuzzle
With the adorable little fella in this call to action, how could we not include this example? All cute pups aside, we also like the simplicity of the design and the attractive colors. NOTE: This does not mean you should use your pooch to get email signups. Nuzzle is a dog collar company, so this image is relevant to their business.

2. Business Development Bank of Canada
We like a few things about this email signup call to action. The “FREE”, in red and all caps, informs the user of important information right off the bat. The description below is short yet it lets you know exactly what you’re getting, and how. By reassuring that you can unsubscribe at any time, and including a visual example on the left, BDC reduces the risk and uncertainty of signing up.

3. Cabot
While the previous call to action uses detail and design, this one uses more simplicity and exclusivity. “Become a Cabot Insider” appeals to the human desire to be a part of something special. The short description lets users know exactly what to expect, and the green color of the subscribe button creates a welcoming and safe feel.

4. Digital Trends
Digital Trends does not go into extreme detail about what you will get for signing up. They assume that you are on their site to get their Computing News and thus will have an idea of what a recap will look like. Instead of detail, they focus more on urgency with their “Don’t Fall Behind” headline, as well as on asking for permission to send additional emails. Another unique aspect of this call to action example is that the “no” option is not an X, but a longer, more human-sounding statement.

5. The Country Cook
What we like about Country Cook’s email signup call to action is its personalized language and attractive design. Words like “pop” and “gimme” add some fun and excitement. The message below the actual button addresses some of the hesitations a user might have and adds a human element to this digital box. There are quite a few exclamation points in here, which has its pros and its cons. In addition, the black color of the field text draws attention away from the rest of the elements in the call to action, which may or may not be intended.

6. DIY Site
This DIY site uses the same approach as Country Cook, creating the feel that a human is calling you to this action. In addition, the simplicity of the message, the use of bold font and contrasting colors, and the big white arrow makes this an eye-catching graphic.

7. SMS Global
This email signup call to action takes an effective approach of highlighting first the benefit to the reader (“Grow Your Knowledge”). The use of “Don’t Fall Behind” in example #4 has a similar effect but more of a negative connotation. This call to action also appeals to the human desires of belonging (“Join thousands”) and exclusivity (Don’t miss out!). Finally, the use of “now” in the subscribe button creates urgency.

8. Investopedia
Like Example #7, Investopedia encourages the reader to sign up by highlighting the benefit it will bring to them. They also clarify the frequency of the emails, reducing uncertainty. Like Digital Trends, this call to action uses a more human-sounding phrase for the “no” option. Unlike Digital Trends, this phrase is a bit more witty. This type of approach has its pros and cons as well, with regard to brand voice and user experience.

9. Printsome
This call to action by Printsome is different from the ones before it as it asks for the user’s name as well. In addition, it creates an incentive for signing up, with both an immediate and long-term offer. The subscribe button is bright and eye-catching, and uses urgency and excitement.

10. Remote.co
This call to action example is worth noting because it uses a large, attractive image and immediately conveys the purpose of signing up. In addition, the text below the headline attracts attention with the use of a question, and clarifies the email frequency for the subscriber.

11. Teddy Bear Club
What makes this email signup call to action unique from the rest is that it starts with a question. Questions can be a good way to catch the reader’s attention. The description doesn’t provide explicit details into what kind of information the subscriber will get, aside from “open houses and more”, but it does provide the benefit to the reader: being the first to know. The actual button, however, is a bit confusing. “Learn more” makes it uncertain as to whether clicking the button is the last step for signing up or will bring the user to another information page.

12. Crush Boutique
We like Crush Boutique’s email signup call to action because even though “you” isn’t as effective as seeing your actual name, the phrase “hey you” certainly grabs your attention in a friendly way. We also like its simple and attractive design. The word “Join” reassures the user that clicking that button will complete the action of being added to the list. There is also more than one option to exit, which can help the user to feel less confined and more in control of their experience.

13. Popsugar
PopSugar’s email signup call to action contains a few elements that we haven’t seen yet in the above examples. The “Signup with Facebook” option may be preferred by regular Facebook users, and is sometimes quicker and requires less steps. The phrase at the bottom creates transparency for Popsugar and confirms for the user the action they are taking—giving Popsugar permission to email them. However, including “agree to the Terms” may cause the user to feel like they are committing to something bigger than they thought, and to feel hesitation. If this is, in fact, a legal requirement, including it at the bottom and in small font is the best solution.

14. Living Social
Like Popsugar, Living Social also includes a consent statement, at the bottom and in a small font. But what we really want to point out here is the simple and attractive design, the gift icon to convey that the reader will get something out of this, and the use of an offer to encourage signups. However, it is unclear as to whether this 80% refers to a single coupon or the average discount for items on their site.

15. Nav
Nav’s call to action for their email news letter is a great example of concise copywriting. It tells the user the ultimate value of the newsletter and then clarifies how often the email will be sent. The example email, with it’s clean and branded design, to the right, is an added element of appeal.

16. Unreadit
Unreadit’s approach is unique in that it doesn’t just tell you what the newsletter provides, but why. Because “You shouldn’t start the week with just work emails.” It then provides the details that potential readers want to know, but in bullet form, including past issues, day and time of email send, and how many subscribers.

17. Later
Later newsletter uses that common approach of inviting the visitor to join an existing community, as well as that of giving the opportunity of being the first to know and detailing exactly how frequently the newsletter arrives. Even better, on the right you see samples of emails that you would receive, which allows people to get a taste and intrigue their curiosity.

18. Austin Kleon
Austin’s copywriting style is in line with his simple three-color branding. In 19 words, he tells you exactly what you need to know and then gives you the opportunity to view the archives for added reassurance. His author bio on the right is also a helpful way to add personalization and build familiarity.

19. Data Viz
Data Viz takes a bold move here by simply including their newsletter CTA at the end of their website. This format expresses confidence that their website encompasses it all, and that their newsletter is just an extension of what the visitor has already seen. Plus, the “We never share your data” is clear and concise.

20. Mel’s Sandbox
Started with a dog, gotta end with a dog. The Mel’s Sandbox email newsletter CTA is short and simple, even including the average word count for each email, which can get more of the fast-paced skimmers to sign up.

Get more email subscribers with better calls to action
You may have noticed some common themes and best practices in the call to action examples above, such as:
Reduce uncertainty for potential subscribers by giving them an idea of what to expect.
Try out different approaches: authoritative, short and sweet (slightly bold), reassuring, casual.
Incorporate elements of urgency and excitement.
Be human with your copywriting; people like people.
Hopefully these examples have given you some inspiration and tips to brush up your email signup copy on your website, whether on your homepage, your blog, or wherever else you encourage interested readers to join your community.

Modified Broad Match Is Going Away: What You Need to Know

On February 4, Google made another in a series of announcements over the years about changes to the structure of its keyword match types (the last being in 2019). As of February 18, 2021, the phrase match type will be expanded to match to more search queries, and the broad match modifier option—which was introduced in 2010, and which allows advertisers to specify certain words (with a plus sign) that must be included in a search query—will be retired.

Image source
This is a pretty significant change, with upsides and downsides. Today, we’ll be covering everything you need to know about this upcoming change, including:
A brief refresher on existing keyword match types in Google Ads.
What is changing now that the modified broad match type is going away.
What Google and the community are saying about the change.
What you can do about it, with five actionable tips on what to do next.
Let’s get started.
A refresher on match types
To understand what’s happening, let’s do a quick refresher on the existing match types and then compare them to the new match types.
Existing match types (before February 18)
Existing match types in Google Ads include broad match, modified broad match, phrase match, and exact match.
Broad match: With broad match, as long as the search query is contextually similar to the keyword you are targeting, this could trigger your ad to show.
Modified broad match: With modified broad match keywords, you choose specific keywords that are required for your ad to show, through the use of a plus sign. In other words, your ads will only show for queries that contain all of the words you precede with a plus sign in your keyword or phrase. However, order does not matter. Here are Google’s examples of modified broad match keywords:

Phrase match: Phrase match keywords are similar to modified broad in that your ad will show for queries that have your target keywords (in quotations) in the search query, but order does matter. Google had already opened this match type a bit more to consider intent as well.
Exact match: For exact match, you would choose a specific phrase for which you want your ad to show—indicated with brackets. This is (as of 2018) with the exception of functional words within a user’s search query (such as “in,” “to,” and “for”), conjunctions (such as “and,” “but,” and “or”), articles (such as “a,” “an,” and “the”), misspellings, and other close variants.
Modified broad is going away—what has changed?
Now, when you input keywords for your ads, you will only have three options: broad match, phrase match, and exact match.

So say, for example, that you are targeting +get +more +google +ads, this input will no longer act as a “true” broad match modifier. Rather, Google will treat the keywords as a phrase match type, but will expand to cover broad match modifier traffic as well.
“This is not an ideal change,” said Allison Day, WordStream’s Lead Acquisition Specialist, “because phrase match isn’t an equivalent replacement for a broad match modifier in all cases. Phrase match matches keywords that have the same meaning, but in the case with our example, get more Google ads does not mean the same thing as get more conversions on Google ads.”
Here is another visual of the new keyword match type logic will work, from Google’s support page:

What Google says
According to Google’s help article, this change will “bring the best of broad match modifier into phrase match.” Google states that the reasoning for this is that both phrase match and broad match modified keywords “often serve the same use cases, and that you can reach more of the right customers through a combination of the two.”

They also state that this change makes it easier to manage keywords in your account (by saving you the time spent managing specific keywords) and gives you more control.
According to Google’s help article, here are some additional points:
No specific action is needed. When the change takes place on February 18, performance data will not be affected and no keyword migration will be needed. In fact, it’s best not to migrate or convert them at this time, since additional tools will be rolled out for easier conversion in the future.
You can still create broad match modifier keywords until July when the new behavior is rolled out globally, but any new broad match modifier keywords will serve under the new logic. That being said, it is recommended that you create new keywords using phrase match going forward.
The PPC community weighs in
Unsurprisingly, many advertisers in the community do not agree that the removal of the modified broad match type allows for greater control. Rather, they say, it appears to be in line with the push toward automated/Smart bidding—with Google having the control.

Some advertisers, however, are more open to the change.

The bad news…
When we asked PPC expert Mark Irvine about this change, one of the initial concerns he brought to light was the growing sense of ambiguity around these changes.
“This is the fifth time that Google’s changed its keyword match type rules (2014, 2017, 2018, 2019, and 2021), and every time, it has brought a lot of unpredictability to PPC advertisers and unearthed a lot of problems in accounts that are still following the best practices of yesteryear. What’s more interesting about this time, however, is that it’s harder to predict how advertisers will be impacted. In the past, we all knew that this meant more traffic on your keywords. This time around, that might not be the case.”
Irvine also shared his thoughts on the negative impact this change could have on reach, impressions, and more for some accounts.
“Accounts that get more of their traffic from modified broad match keywords may actually see a small decrease in their ad impressions, clicks, costs, and potentially conversions, as the new match type logic will prevent some of their keywords from matching to traffic in cases where the word order might matter. Additionally, BMM keywords that only used the + modifier on some of the words in their keyword will now require all those words to be included in a user’s search, which could significantly reduce reach.”
…And the good news
According to Irvine, some accounts may see a positive impact.
“In accounts that get more of their traffic from phrase match keywords, they should expect an increase in their ad impression, clicks, costs, and potentially conversions with this change. With the ‘more broad phrase’ match, these keywords will be more flexible to reach traffic that they previously hadn’t.”
Note here that advertisers will need to keep an eye on their budget because along with more clicks, costs could increase as well.
Brett McHale, founder of Empiric Marketing, LLC  shared a similar mix of positive and negative outlooks on the situation:
“The change to phrase match and the phasing out of modified broad match appears to me to be another step in the automation direction for Google. They’ve consistently blurred lines between what were once very clearly defined match types. Whether through automated bid strategies or limited search terms appearing in the search terms report, it’s clear that they want you to rely on their recommendations.”
Brett went on: “With that being said, it’s not necessarily a bad thing—a lot of these changes have been beneficial to the accounts that I manage, and this change will certainly make it easier for novice advertisers to understand keyword targeting as it simplifies the process. As with any change that simplifies paid media, the tradeoff is that you take control and complexity away from advanced users.”
In short, Brett said, “Google is doubling down on their technology and its ability to make ‘smart’ decisions for advertisers. The change can be good for many, while it may make it harder to really fine-tune ad groups for others.”
How to navigate the sunsetting of modified broad match
Due to the aforementioned ambiguity of this change, there aren’t any clear-cut instructions on how to navigate or even prepare it. This is very much a wait-and-see-situation. However, Natalie Livingston, Team Lead on Customer Success at WordStream, has some foundational tips to consider for the time being.
Here are our five tips on what to do next.
1. Look at Recommendations
Now more than ever it will be important to keep an eye on Google’s Recommendations specifically the add new keywords and remove duplicate keywords recommendations. Due to the changes in what would be captured with a phrase match keyword, you might want to consider adding in new keywords to expand your reach. Even more importantly, because modified broad keywords and phrase match keywords are now going to pick up the same traffic, you might run into more duplicate keywords within your account. This is very important for accounts that bid on the same keywords, but use different match types.

2. Revisit your account structure
As Irvine mentioned, the changes to the modified broad and phrase match are going to affect the amount of traffic coming in and therefore your spend. For keywords on modified broad, the traffic is going to be less than in the past and then keywords on phrase are more likely going to see more traffic come through. It will be important to keep an eye on budgets and adjust accordingly. This is particularly important for accounts that structure their campaigns or ad groups by match types. An account will most likely want to allocate more budget to campaigns with more phrase match keywords than they would with modified broad. Traffic will fluctuate so it is important to keep and eye on these fluctuations and make adjustments when needed.
3. Continue to use negative keywords to block out bad traffic
Although phrase match will continue to keep intent in mind when it comes to the search traffic, it will be important to continue to use negative keywords to exclude matches you don’t want. Our phrase match keywords are going to open up to more traffic than it had before so evaluating your keywords and adding negatives should be a frequent task within an account. Note: phrase match negative keywords will stay the same!
4. Stay up to date
This is a new change for all of us so we are in this together in regards to really seeing how this is going to play out in each account. It is important to continue to read what other advertisers are saying about the changes and take note of what you are seeing in your account to help share with others.
5. Get familiar with automated bidding
Google mentioned that over the last year or so, they have made improvements to other match types as well. One being the broad match type. Now, broad match will look at additional signals (such as landing pages, keywords in your ad group) within an account to deliver more relevant searches. If you are nervous about the lack of volume in your account with these new changes, you can test out broad match keywords with smart bidding to help unlock new opportunities within your account. Just be careful that your search traffic with your broad keyword isn’t overlapping with search traffic in other ad groups/campaigns.
Prepare for the new match type logic with these tips
As we already mentioned, the real impact of the sunsetting of modified broad match types will be more clear once the new logic is fully rolled out. In the meantime, take a look at your match types and account structure, check out Recommendations, continue to use negative keywords, and familiarize with automated bidding if you haven’t already done so.
How do you feel about the change? Let us know in the comments below.

30+ Creative and Cost-Friendly March Marketing Ideas

March is National Reading, Women’s History, Brain Injury, Youth Art, and Nutrition Month. It’s also #marchmadness and #gogreen time. There’s a lot going on! Between these and many other themes (including the first day of spring), there are plenty of opportunities to market your business in unique ways, connect with your audience, and attract more customers.

That’s why we’ve written this post, which covers 30+ creative and affordable March marketing ideas. We’re going to provide you with:
A list of March awareness causes, holidays, and observances.
A list of March hashtags to use this month on social media.
Examples of March promotions, social media posts, and more from real businesses across a range of verticals.
For your convenience, we’ve grouped the ideas by holiday/observance. Ready to engage your customers and get your name out there? Read on.
March holidays and observances
There are some really great holidays this month…some are super-specific while others are enjoyed by most everyone giving you loads of options for creative and local marketing. They include but are not limited to:
Read Across America Day
Dr. Seuss’ Birthday
International Women’s Day
Daylight Savings
Girl Scout’s Day
Pi Day
St. Patrick’s Day
First Day of Spring
International Puppy Day
National Medal of Honor Day
Mom and Pop Business Owner Day
MLB Opening Day (so long as the pandemic permits)
Crayon Day
March awareness causes
There are many awareness causes that you can use for March blogging, promotions, and social media marketing. You can post on or write about these topics throughout the month of March so you’re not tied to a specific date. They include:
Reading
Women’s History
Brain Injury
March Madness
Youth Art
Nutrition
Hashtags for March marketing
Here are some hashtags you may want to use this month in your social media posts:
#read2018 #womenshistory #BrainInjuryawarenessmonth #TBIChampion #MarchMadness #NationalChampionship #youthartmonth #youthart #nutritionawarenessmonth #healthyeating #healthyfood #readacrossamerica #drseuss #internationalwomensday #womensday2018 #womensdayeveryday #piday2018 #pinchme #gogreen #internationalpuppyday #puppypic #nationalmomandpopbusinessday

As mentioned above, we’re now going to use the next section to provide examples of Facebook posts, Instagram posts, and promotions based on the above March themes.
Examples of March marketing promotions and posts
Whether your business is directly related to any of the themes of March doesn’t matter—with a little creativity you can come up with a relevant and appealing promotion for any audience. Let’s take a look at some ideas.
1. First day of spring
What better reason to run a sale or promotion than that of celebrating the end of winter? Leverage the excitement and fresh-start mindset surrounding the first day of Spring to boost participation in a special offer. Better yet, promote this offer on Google by publishing a post through your Google My Business account. This will enable more of the right eyes to discover your business and your special deal.
You can get people in the mood for flowers and sunshine by posting pastel-rich photos…

 …or get real about your situation…

2. National Women’s History Month
Take some time in March to honor the women in your business or industry who have made an impact. Celebrate women by showcasing those who have contributed to history and society to make our lives what they are today. Check out the Women’s History Month website for more information.
You might also want to give a brief, applicable history lesson of women in your field or niche:

Another idea is to create a code for online shoppers to apply discounts to their purchases which coincide with an awareness cause:

3. National Nutrition Month
March is National Nutrition Month and a great time for restaurants, health food suppliers, and fitness centers to market their products and offerings.

You can also provide nutrition tips and healthy recipes to your customers through blog posts or email newsletters.

This is a great opportunity to engage people on social media. Post recipes or meals on Pinterest and Instagram. Use the hashtag #eatright and #NNM to get your posts noticed and shared. Or encourage people to educate themselves and get them excited about living a healthier lifestyle.

You can also be a bit tongue-in-cheek and describe your business as “food for the soul” or highlight true health benefits your services provide that nourish your body or mind. It doesn’t have to be food-related so don’t try to make your business fit into these holidays too literally.

4. March Madness marketing
Pandemic-pending, the NCAA men’s college basketball tournament tips off in March. There are plenty of ways to get into the spirit:
Create a March Madness bracket to go with your business.
Restaurants can have a competition of their most popular sandwiches and encourage diners to order one of the two dueling dishes.
Small businesses in or around college towns can get in on the action by offering patrons a discount for wearing team colors.
Take pictures of your employees who are getting in the spirit and post them on social media with the hashtag for the team you support.
And even if you have nothing to do with sports, you can still take part. If a bridal boutique, an event planning company, and a dog treat business can find a way to jump on the bandwagon, anyone can.

5. Employee Appreciation Day
A little recognition can go a long way in maintaining your employees’ morale and productivity. Plus, high-spirited employees make for happier customers. Take some time to publicly express appreciation for your employees, such as with an employee spotlight blog post or social media shoutout.
Keep in mind also that these types of gestures make your business more appealing to potential customers because they humanize your brand.
6. National Day of Unplugging
The first Friday of March is National Day of Unplugging and the perfect day for marketing your spa, yoga studio, or fitness center. Encourage people to visit your facility—offer a special deal for that day—and give people a chance to disconnect from the busy world of the internet and smartphones.
7. Pi Day
Pi Day is March 14 (3.14). This is a perfect opportunity for educational daycare centers and after school programs to teach children about math and host fun “Pi Day” events. Bakeries and restaurants should take advantage of this opportunity as well with specials on pies or pie baking classes.

Tag all of your posts on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram using hashtag #piday to get your posts found by people looking for Pi Day specials. Encourage social media followers to bake and show off their pies and, if you’re into it, eat some pie.
Pi Day can fit in with any business. Choose a special offering on March 14th or use the day to grab people’s attention about a promotion. 

 

8. St. Patrick’s Day
The luck of the Irish is here on March 17 for St. Patrick’s Day. Get involved in your community by participating in St. Patrick’s Day parades or Shamrock Shuffle fun runs that are going on. St. Patrick’s Day is a perfect opportunity to dress in green and post on social media. Give customers wearing green a special discount or prize for taking a picture and tagging your business. If you are participating in local events, make sure to use the hashtag to get your posts found by new followers and promote your business.
Get festive and invite your followers to drop in for limited-time offerings inspired by the luck of the Irish for St. Patrick’s Day.

Run a Facebook contest and invite people to test their luck! To garner more followers you may incorporate an incentive to share your Facebook page for a single entry into the contest.

9. International Puppy Day
Okay so everyone.loves.puppies. If you’ve got a dog-friendly business, snap photos of patrons and their pups and post them to Instagram, tagging your customers to cultivate those relationships.
Or, offer a one-day sale to new customers and show off the pups you currently walk or pet sit on social media. Make sure to hashtag your location to get your posts discovered by nearby potential customers.
You don’t have to necessarily be a dog walker, groomer, daycare, or sitter. Show off your employees’ pups or, take photos of your own and share with your followers and give people a more personal view of your life.

Or run a promotion based on the holiday, as with the example below.

10. Earth Hour
Participate in the movement to have an electricity-free hour this day. From 8:30-9:30pm, countries around the world will be lighting candles and going dark on electricity. Get your business involved in your local Earth Hour event in your city, or, if there isn’t one, start it! Participating in community activities is a  great marketing strategy and a good way to get your business name out there and promote yourself.
11. National Reading Month
Use the hashtag #nationalreadingmonth to engage with your followers:

12. National Mom and Pop Business Day
How could we miss this one? Here are some ideas:
Remind your followers to shop local on this small business-friendly holiday.
Promote your favorite local partners to show some partner appreciation.
Toot your own horn (ideally in conjunction with the above strategies).

Come up with your monthly posts at the beginning of the month if you can. You don’t want to space and miss your favorite holiday!

For more monthly marketing ideas, check out our other posts:

20+ Fabulous (and Affordable) February Marketing Ideas

February, of course, is more than just hearts and candy. In addition to known holidays like Valentine’s Day, Mardi Gras, and Presidents Day, It’s Home to Black History Month, Children’s Dental Health Month, Random Acts of Kindness Day, and lot’s more, like Love Your Pet Day.

In this post, I’m going to give you a list of February holidays, awareness causes, and unique observances that you can use for creative and meaningful marketing that resonates with your audience.
P.S. For marketing ideas for the whole year, check out this ultimate list of monthly marketing ideas from our friends at LOCALiQ. 
February marketing ideas—awareness causes and marketing ideas
Below is a list of awareness causes recognized in February that can help you with values-based marketing.
American History Month
American Heart Month (heart disease)
Bake for Family Fun Month
Black History Month
Cancer Prevention Month
Children’s Dental Health Month
Embroidery Month
Free and open source software month
Library Lover’s Month
Self-Check Month (to check up on your health)
Teen Dating Violence Awareness Month
Wedding Month
Some of these are general while others are highly specific, so depending on your business, your trade, or your niche, you may or may not be able to apply these to your marketing (National Embroidery Month isn’t exactly versatile, for example).

February awareness-based marketing ideas
Showing your support for causes you care about is a great way to connect with your audience and build a solid reputation. Here are some examples.
1. Heart Health Awareness Month
So February isn’t all about that $1 pink balloon heart but also that invaluable organ inside of you that makes you tick. If your business is focused on health and wellness, this is a great marketing opportunity for you. Fitness centers and gyms can partner with a local health center for heart disease awareness or screenings.
You can also host special classes focusing on cardiovascular activity or write informative blog posts about heart health and risk factors. Use this time to market your business by educating your customers on leading healthy lives.
In the example below, this fitness center is giving out free heart rate monitors to those who join in the month of February.

If you’re not a health or fitness business, no problem. Any business can sponsor a Healing Heart 5k, or donate a portion of their profits to a heart health-related nonprofit.
2. Children’s Dental Health Month
Children’s Dental Health may sound like a boring topic but it can be a great month for marketing your small business. Dentists can certainly have a field day with this one, but other businesses can use this opportunity to teach parents and students about the importance of dental health.
Daycares, fitness centers, and churches can host special classes about the importance of dental hygiene. If you’re a dentist, you may offer to teach such classes This not only businesses interact with the community, but it helps local dentists market themselves all while educating parents and children about dentistry.
If you’re not a dentist, a simple social media post to bring your target audience’s attention to the cause can go a long way.
3. Black History Month
Given the events of 2020, this year in particular will be a special celebration, so you may want to put extra thought and planning into Black History-related expressions from your business. In particular, there should be less of a marketing focus and more of a social change focus.

Highlight prominent Black leaders in your industry—lawyers, politicians, scientists, artists, educators, and athletes who have shaped or are shaping American society or your industry. Interview or feature Black business owners, influencers, or members of your community who are helping to make history.
4. Cancer Awareness Month
In addition to having World Cancer Day, the whole month of February is dedicated to cancer awareness. Show your support on Facebook with a purple-themed post or initiative. You can encourage your followers to “purple” their profile, promote your purple products, or run a purple-themed contest. 

February marketing ideas—holidays and observances
Some of these are well-known, others not so much. Take a look and see which ones align with your brand voice and values.
Groundhog Day
Presidents Day
Mardi Gras
Valentine’s Day
Wear Red Day
World Cancer Day
Ice Cream for Breakfast Day
Boy Scouts Day
National Pizza Day
Make a Friend Day
Clean Out Your Computer Day
Organ Donor Day
Random Acts of Kindness Day
Love Your Pet Day
World Bartender Day
5. Run a Presidents Day Sale
Another simple way to implement some February-themed marketing is to run a Presidents Day sale and promote it on Facebook. The sale can last for the weekend or just for Presidents Day itself. Create a landing page for your event and link to it in your post.

You can promote your sale on Instagram by taking pictures of signage if you have it, as with the example below:

Or, you can post pictures of the items that are on sale. Either way, make sure the details of your sale are somewhere in your post, whether in the image itself or the caption. The less uncertainty for your audience, the more likely they are to engage.

You can also see with the above two examples that hashtags are used to describe the item up for sale. This hashtag strategy is most effective for reaching an audience who knows exactly what they’re looking for. However, it also serves as a way to reveal details of the product without cluttering up the caption or having to label the photo.
6. Ice Cream for Breakfast Day
Ironically, in the middle of Children’s Dental Health Month is Ice Cream for Breakfast Day…oops? But who says you can’t use this quirky holiday to market your business? Held on the first Saturday of February, this is an opportunity for bakeries, ice cream shops, or restaurants to run special promotions. Although it is supposed to be on a Saturday, you can do this any day of the week. Invite customers to come in to eat ice cream for breakfast—it’s a fun way to interact with families and do something new to promote your business.

7. Mardi Gras
One Mardi Gras marketing idea is to run an Instagram giveaway. Capitalize on the positive Mardi Gras vibes to engage your audience, gain new followers, and generate leads. Your prize could be a Mardi Gras-themed gift basket as with these tag-a-friend contests below:

Or, you could have a non-Mardi Gras-themed gift for which followers can enter to win by making purchases during the week of Mardi Gras, as with the example below:

A third option would be to run a giveaway whereby the prize is given out at a Mardi Gras event.
Another way to incorporate Mardi Gras into your marketing strategy for February is to offer a discount to those who wear Mardi Gras beads to your store, event, or classes. Promote the sale ahead of time with a post and encourage followers throughout the day by posting pictures of customers wearing their beads.

8. Love Your Pet Day Giveaway
Love Your Pet day is February’s opportunity for you to shamelessly post about your pet. Or, you can do something like Select Hotels did and come up with a creative pet-themed incentive. For customers who post a picture with their pet in the comments section of their post, “A surprise awaits the two of you on your next visit.”

The Instagram example above is a good reminder that you don’t have to be in the animal or pet industry to take advantage of pet-related holidays. Think about your target audience’s relationship with pets and see if you can come up with something clever.
9. Refer a friend for Make a Friend Day
Do you have or have been wanting to start a referral program? Capitalize on Make a Friend Day. You can remind people of a program you’re already running, launch a new one, or run a one-day special where referrals result in a discount or gift.

10. Groundhog Day Contest
There are lots of ways to post to Facebook on or about Groundhog Day. You can run a contest, share a question or poll with your audience, or simply share a fun fact about the day.

11. Wear Red Day
National Wear Red Day is focused on raising awareness for heart disease. On this day, post an applicable picture to Instagram on this day with an eye-opening stat.

Or, you might host an event in support of cardiovascular health and promote it on Instagram.

If you do go ahead with an event, make use of real-time marketing and post pictures from the event!

12. World Cancer Day
You may also want to run a special promotion on World Cancer Day itself, especially if you’re in the health and fitness industry.

Additional February marketing ideas
13. Super Bowl promotions
The Super Bowl is one of the most watched programs on television. How does your target audience relate to football? Are they football fans? Spouses or parents of football fans? Athletes? Is your business located near a Superbowl venue? Run a special during Superbowl weekend, create Superbowl-themed products, or share a helpful tip relevant to what their Superbowl experience will be like.

February hashtag marketing ideas
14. #Febsale
If you’re just getting started with your Instagram marketing, start basic with something as simple as a #Febsale. In the below example,  the small business Mexicali took a snapshot of their ready-to-ship orders to promote their February sale and encourage people to buy.
They didn’t use a photo shoot or fancy Photoshop graphics; just a simple behind-the-scenes sneak peek and a caption that closes with a question.

15. #FebruaryFeels to connect with your audience
You don’t need to have a sale for a February-friendly Instagram post. How about just appealing to your audience’s mood during this time of year?

Just make sure you’re appealing to the mood of your specific audience in February as it relates to your business. Is your audience focused on filing tax forms in February? Returning back to school after break? Reading love stories and seeking positive vibes?
16. Use #FebruaryFeels for a testimonial
Look back through your photos or even consumer-generated posts. Can you repurpose any of them for a #FebruaryFeels-inspired testimonial, as the Australian Girls Choir does below?

17. Use #FebruaryFavorites to promote other content
“February Favorites” blog posts are a great opportunity to offer something of value to your audience. You can share a roundup of your most popular products or services during February to help new or indecisive buyers decide, or you might share a list of favorite tips, tools, products, or resources related to your audience’s goals and needs.
Then, as with the example below, you can drive traffic to your blog post with an Instagram post and a link to the blog post in the caption:

Or you can include a link to the blog post in the bio section of your Instagram profile:

18. Use #FebruaryFeature to promote products
Whether the product you are promoting is February-themed or not, you can make it so by using the hashtag #Februaryfeature. Pick something you’d like to promote in February and see if #Februaryfeature can help increase sales and engagement related to it.

19. Use #FebruaryFeature to feature an employee
As an alternative to featuring a product for February, you could also feature an employee, student, or customer. These types of feature posts can get your employees, customers, and fans excited about your business. Plus, they’ll want to share their “celebrity” post with their network, which can help increase your reach.

20. #FreshStartFebruary
Another theme you can take advantage of in your February Instagram marketing is #FreshStartFebruary. This is especially applicable for businesses in the health and wellness industry.

 

As you can see, there is much more to February than Valentine’s Day. Use the ideas above for creative and quality engagement with your audience—the best way to market your business. And don’t forget about March! If you have events or promotions planned for Saint Patrick’s Day or other holidays, get your audience in the know.
For more monthly marketing ideas, check out our other posts: