Our Guide To Digital Strategy For Marketing Managers

Whether you are looking for ways to develop your marketing strategy, want to find out the benefits of digital marketing or would like to learn more on how to generate trust with your target audience, our eBook has you covered.  

Why Digital Marketing Is So Important  

The world of digital is now. It’s fast moving and ever-changing, making it important to be on the top of your game. As a marketing expert, you already have strong foundations for building an effective strategy, but this guide can help you develop clear targets and recommend the right tools to measure your digital activity effectively. 

Digital marketing allows you to reach a wider audience and as a result, can transform your business.

How Can This Guide Help You? 

If you're unsure where to begin when it comes to digital marketing strategy, don't worry, we've done the hard work for you! This guide is designed to break down the ins and outs of digital marketing. There’s so much to unpack in the world of digital marketing, but our eBook can provide you with an insight into the best practices of being a digital marketing manager. This guide provides all the information and support you need to develop a powerful digital strategy.

What Can You Find In This guide? 

Inside you’ll find a step-by-step guide on how to develop your digital marketing strategy. This eBook is also filled with statistics and facts that explain how influential digital marketing can be on your target audience.  

This guide will help you to determine which area of your business would benefit the most from the support of digital. We will help you develop clear targets and recommend the right tools so you can measure your digital activity effectively and maximise your efficiency. 

We hope you find this guide useful in forming a successful digital marketing strategy. If you have any questions, get in touch with our friendly team; we’re more than happy to help! 

How to Ensure Your E-Commerce Platform Supports Your SEO Needs

When setting up a site in order to sell your products online, you will probably spend lots of time researching the best e-commerce platforms available. Whilst there are many factors that you need to take into account when choosing your platform, its vital to consider how it can support your search engine optimisation (SEO) strategy. 

Unfortunately, some e-commerce platforms may limit your ability to control the way that you optimise your website and this could lead to a fall in rankings and ultimately a drop in sales. It can also be frustrating as a business owner if youre not able to take advantage of the latest SEO updates and strategies because your online shop doesn’t support them. 

Luckily, there are some great e-commerce platforms out there that can help to meet all of your business needs. Wagada has identified four key SEO features which your e-commerce platform needs to have to enable you to optimise your site fully. If you ensure that these are supported, youll be able to provide a great retail environment for your online customers and also help your website to move up the search engine rankings. 

Ensure that you can include an integrated blog on your website

Notoriously, e-commerce sites are lacking in content because their main focus is displaying and selling the product, with content only really being introduced on the actual product listing. With content playing a starring role within SEO, this can sometimes cause some issues.  

This is why we love blogging. Not only is it a great way to share information and communicate with your customers, but it’s also vital for your SEO too and can help bridge that gap between limited content to a healthy amount.  

Blogs are the best way to ensure that your content stays fresh and relevant and theyre the perfect place to include up-to-date keywords and long-tail keyword phrases.  

Tip: Use your blog content to link to other areas on your website to help Google better understand your site and build a better site structure. Internal linking (linking to and from pages on your site)helps to build a hierarchy of content.

Blogs can also help you build a strong backlink profile, can be shared on social media and show Google that you can add real value to your customers’ lives. 

Ideally, your CMS would offer the option to set up an integrated blog section. However, this can be tricky on some e-commerce platforms. Installing a WordPress blog into the directory of your site is an option but it means you may need to continually switch between WordPress and your online store, which is far from ideal. For example, Visualsoft allows you to access a WordPress blog via the dashboard, but it does just open this in a new tab. 

Luckily there are platforms available, including Shopify, which actually include a blog in its e-commerce platform. This is well worth considering if youre keen to blog and to take advantage of the SEO improvements that regular blogging can offer. 

That being said, if your e-commerce platform and blog content management system (CMS) differ, you must ensure that theyre available on the same domain (i.e. example.com and example.com/blog). 

Keep control of your metadata

If you want to increase your chances of ranking for your chosen keywords and phrases, you need to have the ability to include optimised page titles, metadescriptions and URLs for each page. 

Tip: Always take a look at the existing search results of the term you want to target and review the intent behind the terms – are most of the results blog posts (informational)? Or are they product pages (transactional)? This will help you understand whether or not the term is worth targeting or not.

If you have generic page titles it can damage your page ranking and can also lead to issues with duplicate content. If you decide on an e-commerce platform that doesn’t let you control this data, theres a risk that youll be left with generic titles for all of your pages. This results in being unable to take full advantage of any keyword strategies you may have. 

As with many e-commerce websites, you will often find that URLs are ugly, non-optimised and non-optimisable (they may become excessively long, feature upper and lowercase lettering or include punctuation). If you’re building an e-commerce website, try to take control of your URL structure initially. 

Tip: Use breadcrumbs across your pages so that users can easily get back to the page they were before, or help then navigate back to the category or homepage.

We definitely recommend that you choose a platform that lets you retain the ability to individually choose each page title, meta description and URL. There are a number of platforms that let you do this including Magento, so make this feature a priority when deciding on your platform for your online store. 

Manage your automatic redirects and canonical URLs

Redirect vs Canonical? 

A redirect is an instruction that automatically directs you to another page. You usually use redirects when you delete a page from your website and you want Google to recognise it as another. Some common redirects are 301 and 302.  

Canonicals are a hint to search engines. Canonicals are used when you want one page to be “preferred” against another. For example, if you had two pages with very similar content, you can canonicalise page 2 to page 1 as page 1 performs better from an SEO perspective.  

Redirects are listed in your sites HTML, whereas canonicals are a search engine signal that can sometimes be ignored by search engines. 

Some online stores will use multiple domain names. However, when you do this theres a risk that customers may follow links that could take them to the wrong place or simply become broken over time. Of course, this can affect your search engine ranking as it means usability is poor and customers could get frustrated and ultimately decide not to buy from your website. The way around this is to set up canonical URLs or 301 redirects but this can be time-consuming. 

Tip: Only use 301 redirects where completely necessary, using too many redirects can sometime lead to creating a redirect chain that can ultimately lead to deindexation of your site because search engines can’t crawl your site.

If you think this could be an issue for your site, then it can be a good idea to choose a platform that automatically redirects your users and the search engines to your primary domain. Platforms such as Squarespace can do this for you and save you time and effort, whilst improving the online shopping experience for your customers. 

If you have multiple domains or URLs, you may also want to consider a platform that enables you to implement canonicals. These let you hold content in a number of different places online, whilst making sure that Google is aware that it should only take note of the one page/URL you want to rank for. This is also important if you want to use a number of URLs for products within the same category. 

If this is important to your business, then WooCommerce is a platform that has support for canonical URLs built into it – and even better still, theres a basic version that’s available for free! 

Ensure you can edit your Robots.txt files

This sounds quite technical but what it actually means is that you have the ability to tell Google’s bot that there are certain pages that they should ignore when theyre crawling your website to index it for their search engines. 

When you run an online store, there will often be pages that you don’t want to be searchable online or that you don’t want Google to index. For example, you might have a special offers page that is only available to customers on your mailing list. Alternatively, your blog could be creating hundreds of author archive URLs, such as example.com/2017/09. Such pages won’t rank, so you would want to block them in your robots.txt file in order to improve your website’s crawl budget and/or any indexing issues. 

On big e-commerce websites, faceted navigation can also create major issues in relation to crawl and indexation. Every permutation of refine/sort creates another page (of near-identical content), which can quickly lead to hundreds of thousands of pages. If this is the case, Google’s crawl budget ends up being spread too thin. The best solution for faceted navigation URLs is to block these in your robots.txt file. You’ll also want to noindex, nofollow and canonicalise these pages – so again, ensure that your e-commerce platform enables you to do this. 

BigCommerce is a platform that allows you to directly access your robot.txt files and so is definitely one to consider. 

At Wagada, we think its worth taking the time to consider your SEO needs when choosing your e-commerce platform. You should make sure that you choose one that will offer you the best option for a great consumer experience and will help your site rank well in the search engines. We know that there are a lot of choices out there, so if youre feeling slightly confused by it all, get in touch with our team. We are SEO experts and can help you find the e-commerce platform that works best for you, your SEO and your business. 

Everything You Need to Know About Voice Search and What It Means for Your Website

Firstly, what is voice search?

Voice search is the action of using conversational speech to ask questions, give commands and also make transactions via compatible devices such as smart speakers (Alexa, Google Home) or smartphones (Siri, Google).

How does voice search work?

Voice search has the capability to process and transcribe human speech into text, sort of like the dictation feature on your iPhone. The digital voice assistant then analyses the text to detect the intent. Once complete, the digital voice assistant then connects to external data sources such as search engines like Google to find the relevant information. Finally, the digital voice assistant translates the information into a more digestible and user-friendly delivery to fulfil the user’s initial intent.

For example: Try asking your voice search on your phone or home device “How do I make pancakes?”

The device recognises that you want the ingredients or method, connects to a data source such as BBC Good Food, and then delivers the information back to you in a way you can understand.

Voice search is definitely a lot more complex than this process, but on a very high level, this is how it works.

So, who holds the market share in voice search?

According to a study completed by Comscore, more than half of smartphone users will engage with using voice search at least once per day.

So, who really owns the market share?

Well, it’s no surprise that Google and Amazon account for 94% of the overall voice search market according to Strategy Analytics, with the Google Assistant now available on more than 400 million devices.

How do you optimise for voice search?

With the monumental growth in voice search, it’s imperative that you’re creating content that’s optimised for voice search users. By not considering voice search, you will ultimately find it very difficult to gain organic traffic in the long run. Voice search is the easier and most convenient search form for a user as it requires no typing and it’s accurate and fast, and this should be capitalised upon. Here are some areas to consider when optimising for voice search:

Keyword research for voice search

Optimise for rich results

SEMrush Voice search study found that 70% of all answers returned from voice searches occupied a SERP feature (with 60% of those returning a Featured Snippet Result). A SERP feature is any result on a Google search engine results page that is not a traditional organic result. The most common SERP Features are Rich Snippets that add a visual layer to an existing result.

Restructure your content

As voice search is more conversational than traditionally search, you’ll need to analyse your content’s structure. You should aim to include concise questions and answers to improve the layout and make your content more voice search-friendly.

According to Backlinko’s study, Google prefers short, concise answers and the SEMRush voice search study for Google Assistant found that the text length of answers returned was around 41 words on average.

Top tip: Always include frequently-asked questions (FAQs) on your blogs and pages and keep your answers short and sweet.

Use conversational language

This is a primary characteristic for a voice search query. If you want to appear for voice search results, you must include conversational language and reduce the more robotic language that is being used.

A great way to introduce conversational language is to follow these steps:

Some other areas to consider are:

So, do you think you’re ready? Utilise the tools above to test and try some voice search optimisations on your website.

Or maybe you’re already engaging in voice search? If so, get in touch and let us know what has worked for you in the past.

If you’d like to find out more about how Wagada can help you with voice search optimisation, then get in touch with our team today.

What a Digital Marketing Agency Can Offer Your Small Business

In 2020, we saw a shift in the importance of digital marketing and some companies scrambled to adapt, enhance or even establish their presence online for the first time. For some, it was simply about surviving; more so just getting through until everything returned to “normal”. For others, it was an opportunity to grow, to change and to take advantage of being able to reach new audiences faster than they ever thought they could. 

Whether you’ve just launched your brand online and want to build awareness or have an established presence and are now ready to take your business to the next level, you might be wondering whether employing an agency to help will be the right move for your company.  

Here, we take look at five benefits of working with a digital marketing agency to achieve your online ambitions.  

Digital marketing agencies help to align your strategies 

So, you’ve built a fantastic looking website, have social media pages on every platform you can think of, invested in some ads, sent marketing emails to your subscribers and spent countless hours trying to understand various reports, but your conversions just aren’t increasing, sound familiar? If it does, then you’re not alone, much of the time these elements are in isolation look pretty good, the problem is that the individual strategies aren’t working together. 

The advantage of a good digital marketing agency is that they will always start by looking at your overall marketing strategy (or, if you don’t have one, help you to create one) and your business goals. They’ll then make sure that your tactics, whether in SEO, Google Ads, Social MediaContent Marketing or anything else, all align to reach your potential customers at every stage of their buying journey and push them towards converting.  

Digital marketing agencies get you seen by people who want to buy your products or services 

Imagine opening a shop, selling the best product on the market and at its at a great price. You hire the ultimate salespeople, train them in the highest standards of customer care and even have a fancy coffee station set up while people wait to be seen. Then you forget to take the boards off the windows and unlock the door. 

It’s an extreme example but, once you have invested in setting up a website or e-commerce store the next step has to be making sure that your SEO efforts are getting it in front of the right people. There are so many factors that search engines consider when deciding whether or not to show your business in their results pages; from technical aspects like having a website structure that search engines and crawl and read to fresh, unique and quality content that users will actually want to read and interact with.  

Hiring a digital marketing agency that specialises in SEO will give you an edge over your competitors by making sure you have the fundamentals in place and constantly optimising for what’s important; consistently appearing as the answer to your customers search queries.  

Digital marketing agencies act as an extension of your marketing team 

When you’re a fast-growing business, sometimes capacity amongst the team can wear thin. Sometimes keeping up with client work whilst simultaneously maintaining your website, SEO content, social and other marketing can become a second thought. In these situations, building or expanding an in-house marketing team is an option for some businesses but it requires a considerable investment in time and money to recruit, train and nurture new staff.  

By employing a digital marketing agency, you get access to a whole team of experts that have the dedicated time and means to really master your digital marketing strategy meaning that your investment in a monthly retainer could give you the expertise of 5 or even 10 people, for the salary of one or two in-house. 

Digital marketing agencies stay on top of trends and changes 

Digital marketing is an industry that changes at a fast pace, with search engine algorithm updates and new features being introduced regularly, it’s important to stay on top of them. These updates are usually great news for users; users get better answers to their search queries and see more relevant posts in their feeds, however, it can be a minefield for businesses who are trying to stay abreast of the latest trends and best practices that will ultimately bring traffic to their site and increase conversions.  

Feeling like you’ve just started to make progress with a tactic only to find you’ve somehow taken three steps back overnight can be frustrating and trying to keep on top of what’s happening in the industry can take up time and resources that could be used elsewhere.  

Digital marketing agencies have experts whose job it is to know this stuff, and they enjoy learning it too, which means they are more than happy to tell you about changes whilst implementing the relevant changes or adjustments to your campaigns.  

Digital marketing agencies can get you a higher return on your Social Media and Google Ads budgets 

As a business owner, return on investment is a priority. Paid social media advertising and Pay per Click (PPC) can be very competitive marketplaces. In a bid to catch your audiences’ eye, it’s important to keep your goals clear and considered to really maximise your investment. 

The benefit of bringing in an agency to help with paid advertising is that you’ll be tapping into an expert within these platforms, meaning that they can run and manage your campaign and budget to ensure that it’s optimised and performing to the best of its abilities. Running scripts, monitoring engagement, A/B testing campaigns and more to ensure your money is getting the best return possible. 

So whether you’re looking to improve contact conversions, make more sales, get more traffic or even spread your brand’s name, hiring a digital marketing agency can help and deliver. 

Bonus Benefit  

Hiring Wagada as your digital marketing agency will bring all of these benefits but what’s more, is that you’ll be working with a team of experts that always put our clients first. We’re passionate, we’re flexible, we’re honest and, most importantly, we’re human. If you’re still unsure about what a digital marketing agency can do for you specifically, please get in touch. We’d love to chat about how we can help.  

Our Top Tips When Using Instagram for Business

With over one billion users, Instagram is one of the most powerful social media tools around today. It offers the opportunity to engage and interact with people through visual content, and with over 90% of users following a business account, it is a great way to showcase your brand in a creative way. Here, we discuss our top tips when using Instagram for business, in order to create maximum impact.   

Content

On the whole, it’s the content that you post on your business Instagram account that will have the biggest impact on how successful the social media tool is for you. Before your first post, it is a good idea to think about the following: 

Engagement and who to follow

 

 

Hashtags and Captions

 

 

Review what has worked

One of the key benefits of using Instagram for business is the analytics that comes with a business account. The feature gathers data from your Instagram and allows you to work out what hashtags have brought the most traffic to a post and displays some useful statistics about what kind of people are interacting with you. Googling what times to post is important and can vary for a number of factors, however, Instagram’s insights will be able to tell you when your followers are most active and thus, the best time to post. 

So there you have it – WagadaHQ’s top tips when using Instagram for business that will help you get the most out of your snaps. 

What Is Social Authority and How Can You Get It?

Have you ever found yourself wondering how social media can help to increase brand awareness and rapport amongst your target audience? If so, you’ve probably looked at aspects such as what topics you should talk about, who the best people to connect with are, and how you can get more interaction from followersYou may not have known it at the time, but in doing so, you’ve been reviewing your level of social media authority and considering how to improve it 

90% of customers admit to searching a brand online before making any buying decisions. Indeed, social media networks provide an unrivalled platform for building that relationship. Through sharing expert and engaging content, you can showcase your brand as worth investing in – in relation to both time and money. 

But it’s not as simple as setting yourself up on social, sharing a few posts and watching as new customers fall in love with your services. Real results come from consistently sharing engaging content. The magic truly happens when you bring your page to life and demonstrate what it is about your brand that is so expert and authoritative. 

But how do you go about doing that?  

We’ve put together our step by step guide to communicating your leading position in the industry and building social authority amongst potential customers. 

Showcasing yourself as authoritative on social 

Social media authority can be broken down into 4 key areas: 

Ambassadors 

How often have you asked for a recommendation from a friend before buying?  

Trust is everything. If people see that others who they value and respect feel confident to promote your product or service, it can have a big influence on how they perceive your brand too. Key online influencers could be their friends and family, online personalities, such as bloggers, or even media personalities. The more credible, relevant, respected, authoritative people that you have a liking and following you the better. This can really add to your social authority. Many people will use the number of followers you have to assess how good your business is, so a strong base of fans can be a real asset.  

Knowledge 

Social media isn’t simply about pushing a product or service. It’s about showcasing what you know and providing added value to customers. You need to give them a reason to follow you and show how it will enhance their life in some way.  

 

Simply sharing a picture of your product with a short caption might look nice on a feed, but it doesn’t really do much else in terms of demonstrating authority. Blog posts and vlogs provide great content in this respect. Think of it as providing a free teaser to hook people in. Once followers believe in you and know that what they are getting from you is helpful to them, they are more likely to purchase for real. 

 

Engagement 

It takes two to tango. Increasing engagement with your social channels is no different.  

To raise your profile on social, you need to be liking, commenting and sharing posts of the people you follow. You need to show that you are engaged in their life, as much as they are yours. Start and join conversations, respond to comments, create discussion. Always make sure to acknowledge and recognise when followers have engaged with your content by liking and responding. It’s a simple technique, but it goes a long way to establishing a feeling of rapport amongst your audience. How can you expect them to promote your brand if you won’t share in theirs? 

Following  

How often have you seen that a brand has thousands of followers and just assumed they must be great? The number of followers an account has correlates hugely with the degree of trust we naturally place on them. And yet, followers don’t mean anything if they are an unengaged, irrelevant audience… but your target audience won’t always notice that…  

It’s important to find a balance between growing a large following, but also ensuring you are targeting the right people. If your followers have no interest in your brand, they are never going to engage, and more importantly, they are never going to promote or buy.  

Likes are similar. How often have you scrolled past a good looking image and clicked ‘like’ without really reading it? When we say followers who are engaged in your content’, we’re not referring to those who ‘aimlessly like it without reading’. It’s important to find a balance of generating high volumes of likes because this is something that your target audience will look at, but it’s more important to focus on increasing the number of comments and shares your content is receiving.  

So what do you need to do next to increase your social authority? 

Start by engaging… 

Get online and start chatting! Respond to any comments on your posts and like and share the posts of others. Engage with any local hashtags that are popular and take part in industry conversations across each platform.  

Build relationships with key influencers 

Find out who your key online influencers are and reach out to them via social media. Bloggers, commentators and members of your local business community are a valuable source of likes and follow and can be a brilliant way of getting your posts shared with large numbers of people. 

Create great content 

Having great content that you can share is vital in building your social authority as this is what will really encourage people to engage with you online. Use your blog and news pages to give advice and share knowledge. Make sure that you understand what your social media followers are looking for and provide them with the information that they need and are likely to share with others. 

Building social authority is an increasingly important area of your marketing portfolio. Social media presence is now a must-have for any business, but it’s vital to make sure that you use it wisely to gain a good reputation within your industry. Why not speak to our social media experts to understand more about what platforms you need to be on and how you can get the most out of them. 

 

Wagada Digital Marketing Agency partners with Hubspot to offer an enhanced, integrated digital marketing solution

At Wagada we are always striving to find new ways to support our clients and bring more innovation and efficiency to the way that we work.

Our latest venture of becoming a Hubspot partner is an example of this, demonstrating yet another step in the right direction as we continue delivering on this promise.

Hubspot is an all-inclusive, inbound marketing software platform. It enables businesses to run successful campaigns, executing, managing and measuring all marketing activities from one localised place.
Hubspot Certification badge

As a 360-marketing agency, specialising across a range of digital activities – from SEO and PPC, to social media and content creation – the benefits of working with such an integrated platform are unrivalled.

Going forward, we’ll be able to streamline our digital marketing activities into one place, making our working practices more efficient, better integrated and more effective. Building on our current work, the channels we will be taking advantage of having access to, include:

In response to the partnership, Cheryl Luzet, CEO, Wagada Digital Marketing, explains, “Becoming a Hubspot partner is the next step in our mission to delivering even greater value to our clients. Using the platform, we’ll be able to track conversions and traffic, create marketing funnels, target customers and identify successes all from one place. And all with the ultimate aim of generating more leads for our clients and increasing their return on investment. The highly data driven nature of the platform offers the perfect opportunity for us to drill right down to the exact strategies we need to implement in order to focus on lead generation. It’s the perfect partnership to bring even greater success to our clients and we can’t wait to see the results.”

Keen to understand more? We can offer our Hubspot expertise to new customers as well as helping existing customers benefit from our service channels. Get in touch for more information!

Keeping Us All Smiling When We Need It Most

Life is all a little crazy right now. Figuring out our new normal, trying to slot into a daily routine and wondering how stressful our next trip to the supermarket is going to be.

But amongst all the angst and confusion, we’ve been looking for some of the good, however small, to come out of the COVID-19 pandemic. So, to put a smile on all your faces, we thought we’d share a light-hearted round-up of our favourite things that have come to light over the past few weeks.

1. The Memes

If there was ever a time for us all to find our inner creative comedian, now is definitely that moment. The memes flying around social have been a source of daily amusement, giving us reasons to keep laughing with our friends as we forward them from Whatsapp chat to Whatsapp chat to Whatsapp chat. Whoever is making all of these… please don’t stop!

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A post shared by Corona Time (@coronamemes.__) on

2. Rekindling our old webcam MSN dates

When was the last time you used your computer’s webcam for anything other than a work conference call? In fact, when was the last time you actually video called your friends for a catch up? We’re loving just how creative everyone is getting – from daily Zoom workouts with friends and digital dinner parties, all the way to House Party stag dos and virtual pub quizzes. It’s great to see how we’ve been making the most of the digital world we live in.

3. The sense of community

We often think how anti-social people can be, particularly in the capital – going about our own business and glaring at anyone who dares show even the glimpse of a smile towards us. Yet, this situation has shown just how loving, caring and friendly we can all be. One of our favourite examples of this is the latest service to crop up in Hertford – Shop + Drop. Delivering essential goods packages to vulnerable individuals who can’t leave their homes, it’s been amazing to see how the community has clubbed together to make this happen.

Big shout out to our client, Croft Communications, who have donated a phone line service to ensure no one feels disconnected or unable to source their deliveries.

Joanna Hughes delivers to Peter Ruffles

4. The awesome inventions and creative ways of thinking

Whilst we’re almost certain that the alcohol industry will be one of those very few thriving sectors right now, it’s been amazing to see how some distillers have been thinking a little outside the box in how they can use their product for more ways than one. Announcing plans to switch to producing hand sanitiser during the Coronavirus pandemic, 58 Gin, has certainly made a name for themselves, distributing their new product to vulnerable people, including elderly neighbours, homeless charities and those in care homes. Now that is excellent PR!

5. The love for the NHS

It’s very easy to take our health for granted and even easier to take our public health service for granted when we don’t need it. It’s been truly heartwarming and special to see the love that has been shared from everyone around the country for our amazing NHS. Seeing the flags waving, hearing saucepans banging and watching people singing from the rooftops every Thursday night in admiration of our NHS heroes has been a truly humbling experience.

6. Neighbourly spirit

When was the last time you even spoke to your neighbours? Now, streets have got community Whatsapp chats set up, Number 5 is shopping for themselves, number 10 and 26 and we’re actually stopping to have a quick chat with others on our trip to put the bins out (socially distanced of course!) We haven’t seen community and neighbourly spirit like it since the Golden Jubilee street parties back in 2002. It’s nice to know we’re surrounded by helpful and caring people.

7. Respect for the elderly

We were always brought up hearing ‘respect your elders’, but it’s been lovely to see this truly put into practice. Supermarkets up and down the country have dedicated specific hours for older individuals, giving them the chance to get their weekly spree in without having to come into contact with too many other people.

8. The level of creativity when it comes to protection

Whether you’re a mask wearer or choose to live the naked face life, a round of applause has to go to some absolute geniuses out there who have gone above and beyond to keep themselves protected. Thank you Bored Panda for rounding up some absolutely outstanding examples.

9. House-bound activities

The news, internet and social media sites have blown up with videos of hilarious and some-what unbelievable challenges being undertaken by several individuals. Flats full of Italians have been channelling their inner opera singer to help pass the time, people have completed marathons in their 6ft garden and others have walked their dogs on a lead from their second floor balcony. Whatever you are getting up to from the comfort of your own home, we’re loving hearing about it.

10. We’re starting to realise how grateful we are for life

Whilst not necessarily the way we would have wanted this to play out, one thing that the COVID-19 situation is definitely teaching us, is to be grateful for life. For the freedom to go and do as we please, to be able to hang out with friends at our own leisure, to do things as simple as going food shopping without anxiety or worry. Once this is all finally over, we hope we can remember the time when all those small perks of life weren’t so possible, remembering to smile at the simple luxury of living.

Free business support to local businesses during the Coronavirus pandemic

The team at Wagada are offering free guidance and support to local businesses during the Coronavirus pandemic, to help support them through the coming weeks and months.  Our aim is to give you actionable tactics which you can implement to help your business to not only survive, but thrive.

If you are a St Albans-based business and would like some support during these challenging times, fill in our online contact form below to get access to our free community marketing support and one of our team will be in touch.

How to Create an Effective Marketing Strategy in a Crisis

With the recent outbreak of COVID-19 and the continuing development into a global pandemic, it is natural to have concerns about the future of your business. However, as the saying goes: “we are all in this together”, and with the right care, attention and management, many businesses have the potential to come out the other side stronger than ever before.

COVID 19

When it comes to marketing, now is a great opportunity to be ready and adaptable for change, whether that be within the company itself, your business’ industry or in the wider world. It is therefore vitally important to be prepared and implement an effective crisis marketing strategy to minimise any negative impact on your business.

Be prepared to adapt

Rather than cease marketing activity, it is more important than ever that you continue to market your business, and there are a number of brands who have proven this, reaping the benefits of maintaining advertising budgets during an economic downturn.

Pizza Hut and Taco Bell

In the 1990-1991 recession, Pizza Hut and Taco Bell capitalised on McDonald’s reduction in advertising and promotion. This led to Pizza Hut increasing sales by 61%, Taco Bell by 40% with McDonald’s declining by an enormous 28%. (Forbes)

And it doesn’t end there…

Amazon

During the Great Recession in 2009, Amazon branched into new avenues, promoting Kindle products in order to increase market share and offer a viable alternative. This in turn led to a huge 28% increase in sales during 2009. (Forbes)

Marketers need to think long-term

This is why it is vitally important to maintain marketing activity, but by shifting attention to online marketing opportunities as part of a long-term plan to build brand awareness and ultimately – increase revenue.

The coronavirus crisis will test us all, but marketers need to think long-term and keep building their brands, protecting their staff and honouring their values.

Mark Ritson, Marketing Week

Concentrate on the channels that are most appropriate in your new situation to ensure that parts of your business continue to thrive, updating customers and clients in the correct way. For example, physical networking won’t be possible for the foreseeable future due to cancellation of events and social distancing. However, a great digital alternative would be to connect with like-minded individuals on LinkedIn or host a Facebook Live webinar.

Create opportunity

Getting creative and being flexible in difficult times will enable your business to not only survive, but thrive.

Amidst panic, Google searches will be heightened. If you offer a product or service that could bring any sort of relief or assistance to anyone during this time, focus on that. Increase your SEO efforts to ensure you reach the right customers to help in their time of need. With an open mind, you will naturally begin to find new business opportunities. Likewise, there is the potential for a boom in the economy once the situation resolves – your business needs to be ready to capitalise on this in 2020 and beyond.

Alter your services (if possible)

You may have seen many businesses already altering their service offering to suit the current changes in everyday life. For some, this includes contactless home delivery on goods or food, virtual conferences or live workouts on social media. If possible, adjusting your practices and offering something of value during this time will really help you to maintain business, and in turn help with cash flow. How creative can you be here? You may just surprise yourself and introduce a service that sticks.

Man wearing PPE unpacking car

Increase your online visibility

Previous recessions have shown that when there is an economic downturn, maintaining a level of marketing helps businesses as the economy recovers; so now is the time to develop your digital marketing and  make sure you have an SEO-friendly website.

If you are adapting your service offering during this time, you will need to give customers the opportunity to find you online by searching for products and services as well as by brand name. Users will be searching heavily over the coming months, and with more time on their hands they may be in need of your offering now more than ever. Build your brand and increase its online visibility – you will be protecting your business and its reputation during this time.

If your company is a B2C or e-commerce brand, your online presence is more important than ever, as users will not be out and about reading adverts or picking up leaflets and brochures. Did you know that by adding schema (a type of structured data) to your website, you could harness somewhere in the region of a 30% increase in click-through-rate? Once that traffic has landed, the average e-commerce industry conversion rate is then 2.04%? (Growcode). So, what if you could actually increase that conversion rate as well? There are a number of different ways to do this and start generating an increase in sales, revenue and ultimately, profit. Scroll down to find out more.

Concentrate your efforts

There are some aspects of your business that will be hit harder during this time than others. It is important to identify new opportunities that will be most beneficial to you in this time and concentrate your efforts in developing and improving them.

You will need to maintain focus and develop a new way to market your business that will help it survive and improve recovery following these challenging times. For example, did you know that…

Don’t try to do it all at once – focus in on the areas of your digital marketing activity that really matter so that you can achieve quick wins and generate increased revenue through focused and well-defined tactics.

Look after your staff

Remember that this will be a tough time for your staff in terms of childcare, money worries and the health of family members.

For your crisis marketing strategy to work effectively, your staff need to be present (even digitally) and healthy. Many businesses have already adapted quite quickly and have enabled their staff to work from home. There are great ways to stay in touch via technology and still have regular meetings and conference calls through platforms such as Skype, Zoom and Microsoft Teams.  Marketing is about creating customer value, and your staff are at the heart of that. Keep your staff positive and engaged through this period – they will be some of your strongest brand ambassadors during this period.

Stay positive

Although times are uncertain, this situation will eventually improve. Your business may even benefit from forthcoming changes and shifts in spending habit, and you could come out the other side stronger than before. Whether this be down to increased brand awareness or clarity of purpose and priorities, businesses have the ability to benefit in one way or another – stay positive, and look ahead to what the future holds for you and your business.

‘How to’ guide

Inspired by this article and ready to take your marketing to the next level over the coming weeks? Here are some of our top tips for what should be included within your crisis marketing strategy:

Here at Wagada, we encourage you and your business to stay safe. For those looking to increase their digital marketing efforts, get in touch and we will discuss how the team can best help you.

Free business support to local businesses during the Coronavirus pandemic

Inspired by the creative and innovative ways that companies have adapted under difficult circumstances, the team at Wagada are offering free guidance and support to local businesses during the Coronavirus pandemic, to help businesses get through the coming weeks and months. The aim is to give you actionable tactics to implement, enabling your business to not only survive, but thrive.

If you are a St Albans-based business and would like some support during these difficult times, fill in our online contact form below to get access to our free community marketing support and one of our team will be in touch.

Why Googling Yourself Does Not Work

It is easy to pop your business name into Google and judge how visible you are based on what you see in front of you. However, there is a danger that comes with doing this. You may also automatically jump to the conclusion that your ads are working really well or your company is at position one for a particular keyword. In turn, this may lead you to judge your external digital marketing team on their efforts based on what you see on your screen. But it is important to realise that what is coming up on your own Google search isn’t necessarily what everyone else is seeing and that it is much more effective to rely on real figures and data.

So, here are a few reasons why Googling yourself does not work…

Google gives highly personalised results

Google is very clever. It knows a lot about you, from your search habits to your location. It bases your search results on this information, targeting you with the best results in order to meet your needs and your previous search history.

For this reason, searching for your own business – which is most likely in the same location you are in and will be of high interest within your past search history – isn’t the best way to judge your online visibility as a whole.

It is important that you don’t make big business decisions based on this small insight that isn’t even entirely accurate. It is much more beneficial to look into the bigger picture to know exactly how well your business is performing and to measure your return on investment (ROI).

Man searching on laptop

Potentially harming your search visibility

You may feel that Googling yourself on a weekly basis is a great way of tracking your success, but did you know you could actually be hindering it?

Doing this results in false data that could negatively affect your overall search visibility. For example, if you click on your own ad, you are essentially increasing the cost per click (CPC) for something that wasn’t genuine interest from a potential customer.

On the other hand, if you conduct a search and don’t click on your ad, it will appear as an impression but not a click through, negatively affecting the click through rate (CTR) for that particular ad which in turn affects your ranking.

Unreliable data

Google search results should never be a reason that you make a judgement on the performance of your digital marketing team, especially if you have no SEO knowledge yourself.

Yes, for a genuine customer within your targeted location, it can be a good indication of your visibility. But for someone with a strong link to the company and relevant prior search history, search results are not an accurate analysis of success.

It is much more effective to rely on the actual data from specialist tracking software such as Google Ads, Google Analytics or Google Search Console. Unless you have prior knowledge of navigating these, your external agency will provide these metrics to display the performance of your ads and online visibility.

How to stop searching yourself…

Hire an external digital marketing agency or SEO team to manage and monitor all your SEO needs. With the right knowledge and expertise, any damage caused by Googling yourself can be reversed over time. Having someone else oversee your progress and implement strategies to improve your paid and organic rankings will allow you to take a step back. At Wagada, our range of services aim to improve your online visibility and increase traffic to your website, therefore bringing in more business.

Google search console analytics

We understand it can be scary handing over the potential success or decline of your business to someone else, which is why it is so important to employ an agency that you completely trust. It is crucial that you are involved in the process and know exactly what is going on at all times…

Googling yourself can really affect your online performance and visibility. If it appears that Google has not brought you what you were searching for, they will shuffle everything around to try and achieve this. Therefore, if the search is not genuine and is for your own reassurance or monitoring, Google’s reshuffling may be inaccurate and harm your visibility for actual customers.

Spend less time Googling yourself and more time being proactive about your digital marketing; get in touch to begin your SEO journey with Wagada.