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Pop Ups: Don’t Block ‘Em, Unlock ‘Em


Whenever we hear “pop ups,” admittedly our minds still think of pop ups from the early 2000s – back when Windows had that gloomy grey color scheme and all pop ups felt like scams.

Today, we’re reinventing the pop up. They don’t have to be annoying, or scam-y, and they can be a digital marketer’s best friend if you do them correctly. In fact, when done well, users really enjoy relevant pop ups.

So why should you use pop ups?

Well, the largest pull to use pop ups is that they are a great way to generate warm leads that actually want to consume your content. Pop ups are actually proven to drive sales, and websites that have them outperform competitors who don’t. Think about it – by signing up with their email address through your pop up, they’re saying “yes, I want to receive updates from you in my inbox,” which drives sales.

When a user is presented with a pop up, they have to take action – whether that’s saying “yes, here’s my email” or by clicking out of the dialog box. So there’s a 50/50 chance they’ll give you their email address… and an even higher likelihood if you accompany your pop up with some kind of deal.

Pop Ups Best Practices:

  • Offer something. A great way to generate leads is by offering a discount, access to your blog or newsletter, or downloadable content, say… a free Ebook to whoever subscribes. Think about it in terms of your own habits – how likely are you to just give a website your email address? Probably pretty unlikely. You’d have to be offered something or be really interested to trust the website enough to give your email address away.
  •  Don’t make it look pop up-y. There are so many ways that pop ups can look like a beautiful, cohesive component of your website. Be creative and make your ads bold and bright, and make sure it looks nothing like the pop ups we all remember and loathe from the 2000’s.
  • Don’t put too many on your site. While users may enjoy relevant pop ups, they don’t enjoy constantly having to click out of several of them while they’re surfing your site, or having the same ones pop up again and again.

There are a few different kinds of pop ups.

  • Entry Pop Ups are the ones that show up immediately when you enter a website. These are most effective if you’re a retailer, and we suggest you accompany them with a discount. Caution: an immediate pop up has the potential to deter guests from your site, so you have to be careful and offer a good deal!
  • Timed Pop Ups pop up after a certain amount of time the user spends on the site. These are usually really effective because users have already stayed on your page for a certain length of time, so you know they’re interested in your content. Timed pop ups like “Want content like this sent to your inbox?” or “Download our free Ebook to learn even more” are usually very effective.

  • Scroll Pop Ups occur once the user has scrolled down on your webpage or blog post a certain percentage of the page, and won’t pop up before. These are said to be the most effective type of pop up because you know that the user is interested, since they’ve already taken the time to consume your content that much! These will generate the “warmest” leads, or leads that are most likely to end up making a purchase.

Here’s to reinventing pop ups!

Stop Waiting For The New Year!


We can be so guilty of this. When it comes to starting any big project, committing to change, or beginning something new, we push it off for a date that “feels” right. It’s never “right now” but rather “the first of the month,” “the first of the year,” or “on Monday.” Call it OCD or just simple procrastination, but whether it’s launching a new aspect of our own business business or starting a new diet, there’s always a better day to do it than today.

This time of year, it’s something we run into constantly with small business owners. With the mad dash to finalize current projects, boost Q4 sales or simply “make it” through the holiday season, often times new marketing campaigns get pushed to the back burner. We often have clients ask us to get back to them in the New Year when some more time opens up.

Here’s the rub with that decision. Launching a new marketing plan takes time to ramp up (you’re looking at a minimum of 1-3 months depending on how involved it is). It takes time to create social profiles (if you don’t have them already), edit current profiles (if you already do), begin creating and populating content, beginning SEO growth strategies, split testing different messaging, and curating images and videos. By waiting until January to start the discussion, you’ve already put yourself at a disadvantage. Now most of your marketing initiatives won’t even be going live to market until well into 2nd Quarter.

On top of that, you may be like us. You might push EVERYTHING off until that all important starting date! Not only are you now supposed to tackle your marketing strategy on Jan 1, but you may also be putting off an overhaul of your Quickbooks, employee policies, store/office redesign or a new product launch. I don’t know about you but that seems like an awful lot to handle all at one time. And often times, when you’ve stacked too much on your plate, what’s the first thing to be pushed aside until later? Your marketing! Something so essential to selling your products or services and selling your business continually gets pushed to the backburner and before you know it, another year has gone by without a solid plan.

So here’s our advice. Put aside at least 1 hour a week in Q4 to focus on your 2017 marketing strategy. Plan out your blog calendar for the year, gather some social media content ideas, and set up those new social, email or software accounts you’ve always wanted to jump into. Your 2017 self with thank you when you go through that list of To Do’s at the beginning of the year and this has already been checked off.

Should You Outsource Your Business’ Marketing?

Hand delete Hire word on blackboard with chalk for business outsourcing concept

Who is in charge of marketing – creation and execution – within your business? Is it a person or a team? If it’s a single person, is that his or her sole focus, or is he or she wearing multiple hats and ‘handling marketing’ is one of them? So often, small businesses (we’re talking solopreneurs to businesses with 50+ employees) don’t understand the value of a solid marketing strategy. We’re not criticizing you here, not at all…it’s what we do and sometimes even we struggle with prioritizing our own marketing efforts! Marketing and sales go hand in hand. Yes, we know this is an age-old argument, but it’s true. Marketing compliments and supports (or at least it should!) sales, and without sales…well, all businesses need to sell, right?  

Some food for thought here on whether you might want to consider outsourcing some or all of your marketing. Larger companies with bigger budgets often have both internal and external (outsourced) teams, which is often optimal, but smaller companies can still experience similar benefits with an internal individual or point person and an outsourced team. Many smaller companies appoint an individual within their team who is ‘self-taught,’ and though that person may make the perfect internal point person or lead while working with an outsourced marketing company, they remain limited in their breadth and depth of experience and expertise.  

The 5 main benefits of outsourcing marketing:

  1. Cost
  2. Access
  3. Time
  4. Experience
  5. Education


Let’s start with money! Having a full-time, in-house marketing expert, or team, is expensive and can cost up to 6 figures. Hiring an external digital marketing team that remains educated and at the top of their field can save you money and bring you top-notch expertise!


Having access to individuals that focus solely on digital marketing and trends (which literally change on a daily basis) will often provide that extra edge over your competition. Not everyone understands, or values, the importance of staying agile and hyper focused on growth, and having an objective external team assisting with developing, executing and analyzing your growth strategies could give you the upper hand!


Recruiting, hiring, training and managing internal marketing teams takes time. We don’t need to remind you that time = money! Freeing up your valuable time to focus on what you’re good at is critical to your business’ success.


Marketing companies have a depth of experience in all aspects of what you’ll need to create and execute a successful integrated growth strategy. Projects and tasks to consider when deciding on whether or not you might want to hire an outside team:

-Strategic Planning
-Designing Growth Strategies
-Executing Marketing/Growth Strategies and Campaigns
-Website Development
-SEO Campaign Development and Management
-Email marketing
-Social Media Marketing/Management
-Blogging & Content Marketing
-Video Marketing


Staying on top of the ever-changing marketing climate is like following a rocket ship that is zigging and zagging through outer space! From the many different social platforms’ nuances, to tweaking your company’s voice and messaging specific to your audience, to analyzing your SEO and so much more…it is literally a daily commitment to stay on top. If you’re one of the lucky ones that understands the value, and is able to invest in, the constant education for an individual or team, then we high five you!  

Marketing companies generally charge much less than it would cost to hire one full time expert and they provide fresh, objective and comprehensive input. While we understand that many business owners may be reluctant to hire an outside team, we wanted to outline some of the many benefits!

If Content Is King – Video Is The Emperor


Let’s face it – we’re obsessed with consuming video content. We’re all guilty of it – perusing YouTube, watching recommended video after recommended video, or watching one too many Facebook Tasty videos. The number of Snapchat users now exceeds Twitter users. We all love video, so why are so many small business owners still hesitant to invest in video marketing?

As we mentioned in last week’s blog, if content is king, video content is the king’s king! Video marketing is no longer up and coming – it’s a proven successful strategic marketing tactic, and it looks to be here to stay. But don’t just take our word for it. This infographicboasts a lot of impressive statistics about video marketing (who doesn’t love infographics?). For example, YouTube reports video consumption has risen 100% each year. Additionally, after watching a video, 64% of users are more likely to purchase a product online.

Video is human, which is inherently more engaging. Just think about it – video opens up a world of creative opportunities to tell a story, demonstrate your product, or promote your brand. The brain processes visual stimuli 60,000 times faster than words alone, because video appeals to the senses. Video also has the capability to encourage user-generated content and create positive buzz; when a video captivates us, we share it with our network. And we all know what higher engagement means – better ranking in search engine results.

We hear your excuses – “but video content doesn’t belong in my industry.” In the real estate industry? A 2012 National Association of Realtors study found that 85 percent of buyers and sellers “prefer to work with an agent who uses video marketing,” and that was 4 years ago! Since then, consumption of video content has only become more prevalent.Video marketing has a place in every industryB2B (use video to explain your product or service offerings), education & learning (animation videos are really engaging to explain a topic), healthcare (video can be a great vessel to simply sensitive topics),technology (to show audiences what your technology is capable of), and so on!

A few video marketing best practices:

  • As with everything, know your audience and their consumption habits. Of course, that’s always key, and it goes back to our previous blog: are you where your audience is?
  • Get creative, and invest in high-quality. We all love video content, but most consumers have a keen ability to pick up on quality, original content. Be unique, and invest in professional video.
  • For Facebook videos, people love the dialogue to be in subtitles. This is for so many of consumers who watch Facebook videos at work, or keep their phone volume on silent.
  • Don’t lose sight of your brand story. It’s easy to get caught up in all the creative aspects of creating a video, but make sure to keep in mind everything your brand is about.
  • Keep it short. Our attention spans have decreased from 12 to 8 seconds in the last 15 years – so the shorter the better. As a general rule of thumb, keep your video under 90 seconds.
  • Video marketing is not a comprehensive digital marketing strategy – it should be used as a part of a larger, strategic marketing plan.
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