Message Sprout Blog

Facebook ads

Facebook Ads 101

Posted by | Social media tips | No Comments

Posting on your Facebook page regularly used to be an effective way to get the word out about your business. As a social network with over a billion users worldwide, most of your potential customers are already there. But as more businesses began to use the site for marketing efforts, it became increasingly challenging to ensure your posts were even seen by your own followers.

One of the best ways to increase exposure and engagement is to run Facebook ads. Yes, it’s unpleasant to have to pay to be seen on a free website, but these ads are not only inexpensive, but often highly effective and very measurable. Here’s what you need to know if you’re interested in trying or improving your Facebook ads to drive awareness of your products or services. Read More

Search engine optimization

The New SEO Rules: Please Readers, Not Robots

Posted by | SEO marketing | No Comments

When online marketing began to boom, everyone wanted to rank better than competitors in search results. At first, the answer was using keywords anywhere and everywhere. Marketers keyword-stuffed the heck out of every blog post, article and metadata, and content farms began to take over the Internet.

But as writing for the Google robots popularized, much of the Internet became a wasteland of generic, unhelpful content written just for search engine optimization. Google’s humans caught on and began punishing websites trying to game the system with low-quality content and links. Google’s numerous changes in 2014 and a few in 2015 have switched focus from quantity to quality and improving user experience. There is still a need to stick to some traditional SEO tactics, but here are some of the new ways to think about SEO. Read More

Social media

Why You Need a Marketing Editorial Calendar

Posted by | Social media tips, Web content strategy | No Comments

As a marketer, you’re probably in charge of producing and promoting endless amounts of content. When you’re juggling email campaigns, ads, social media posts, blog posts and other wordy media, it’s easy to get overwhelmed and even run out of ideas.

Creating a marketing editorial calendar not only streamlines processes and helps you stay organized, but it also helps better integrate your market campaigns and maximize the content you create. Read More

How to Use Mind Mapping for Content Ideas

Posted by | Social media tips, Web content strategy, Writing a blog | No Comments

You already know about the importance of content for your business (hint: it’s vital for SEO, social media material and engaging with your customers). But with the need for so much high-quality content, you may find yourself running out of ideas on what to post on your blog or social feeds. When you’re struggling to generate new content ideas and need a brilliant burst of creativity, we suggest you turn to the popular technique of mind mapping. Here’s how. Read More

Why Your Business Needs a Copyeditor

Posted by | Copywriting | No Comments

Professional copywriters and copyeditors are trained to have eagle eyes for every punctuation mark and grammar nuance.

Though we’re all human, and even the best writers and editors may overlook a rogue comma or misspelling here and there, it’s much more uncommon than someone in another profession. It’s vital for non-writers to have someone edit their important work before it’s shared with the world. A stray typo or ill-written copy can wreck credibility, especially if it’s in an important PowerPoint presentation or displayed prominently on your website or via email blast to all of your customers. Here’s why your business needs a copyeditor now, and some common mistakes to watch out for: Read More

PR source for journalists

How to Become a PR Source for Journalists

Posted by | Media relations | No Comments

When you have a product, service, or client you want to pitch to the media, you may rely on traditional methods of cold calling or emailing a press release. But there’s a huge chance you will get radio silence, and it’s hard to tell if your PR pitches are relevant, especially if nobody responds.

It’s time to turn the tables and be there for journalists when they need you. Many people seeking promotion have better luck with online tools that connect you with reporters when they’re proactively seeking sources for stories rather than when you have info to share with them. Read on to learn about some of the best, low-cost tools you can use to position yourself as an expert, either in addition to your in-house PR efforts or on your own if you don’t have a PR team. Read More

Social media icons

Do You Really Need to Be on Every Social Medium?

Posted by | Social media tips | No Comments

Small businesses often feel pressure to hop on every social networking site for fear of missing out on the next cool thing, but not every social medium makes sense for every business.

Writing and managing posts on every trendy social media platform can quickly become a time suck, and if you’re not focusing on where your target audience is, you may completely waste your time. How can you evaluate which mediums are worth it for you? Read on and we’ll help you figure out which social sites are best for which purposes. Read More

A brand book example

Why and How to Create a Brand Book

Posted by | Branding | No Comments

“Branding” may be a major buzzword these days, but it’s a lot more than just jargon. Having a solid brand identity that is understood by your employees can be crucial to your success.

However, it’s not enough to simply define your brand in your head and have some catchphrases that your team uses. Once you have decided upon your brand’s look, language, mission and promise, it’s time to compile it into a pretty guidebook that is not only shared with the marketing team (or the other awesome people putting it into action), but also with your entire organization from top to bottom. Read More

Filming fashion video

3 Different Ways to Bring Your Website to Life with Video

Posted by | Social media tips, Web content strategy | No Comments

A picture may be worth a thousand words, but a video can be an even more effective way to bring your brand to life. Videos are not only super sharable on social media with huge viral potential, but they bring more excitement to your website. Professional videos made by a videographer with creative direction are preferable, but if all you have is a smartphone and a little creativity, you are still equipped to make great videos for your brand.

Interested in creating videos to entertain, engage, and educate your online audience? Try some of these fun strategies! Read More

Lululemon Sweat Life contest

Three Easy Ways to Leverage User-Generated Content

Posted by | Social media tips, Web content strategy | No Comments

In the world of search engine optimization, the more unique and informative content a website has, the more likely it is to perform well in search results. Due to this huge SEO perk, marketers are creating content like crazy, from blog posts to case studies.. There’s another type of content you should be aware of that not only boosts SEO, but is even more influential than your own words: user-generated content.

What the heck is user-generated content? It’s a fancy term for content, such as reviews or images, generated by your customers or clients.. This type of content can be a gold mine for marketers – it’s free and it carries tremendous weight in the eyes of prospective customers. A 2012 Nielson study found that while the vast majority of people view most forms of online advertising with deep suspicion, a whopping 92% of customers trust recommendations from friends and family and 70% trust online reviews, As a nifty bonus, it frees you up to spend more time on your other marketing efforts.

Ready to find out how to start gathering user-generated content? Here are three easy ways: Read More

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