Sunday: Our office is closed today but we are still taking calls on 01992 582 824


LinkedInHero Workshop

This week at #CariadTowers we welcomed a number of new faces for our #LinkedInHero session, 60 minutes of manageable top tips to really get the most out of your profile. Even this super chap dropped in for a quick photoshoot! The charity training event raised a superb £250 for Welwyn Garden City based charity Isabel Hospice.

Cariad-Marketing-LinkedIn-Hero-Workshop

Justine Perry and Mary Finucane with the Cariad #LinkedInHero

Following a light breakfast and a spot of networking in the office, Cariad’s MD, Justine Perry hosted an hour long #LinkedInHero session. Focusing on the personal professional profile rather than the organisation she stressed how objective setting was key at the outset of your LinkedIn campaign. She outlined the 3 key objectives for using the platform listed below as well as explaining how you can position yourself as a thought leader in your specialist area:

  • Lead generation
  • Brand awareness
  • Local business connections

LinkedIn Hero-Workshop-Cariad-Marketing

L to R Shirley Rumble, Istvan Molnar, Justine Perry, Super Hero Cornelia Raubal & Sarah Hollingsworth

Here are Justine’s 9 Top Session Tips

Connect to like-minded people and people and companies in your field of expertise

Add your achievements and skills and expand on your work history where appropriate

Don’t be number focused – it’s not Taylor Swift v. Justin Bieber! Quality not quantity is the name of the game. Rather 10 connections who will become your customer than 1,500 irrelevant links on LinkedIn from people and companies who don’t align with your business.

Disconnect or don’t connect with people who will not be valuable to you. Make sure each LinkedIn connection counts and don’t worry about not connecting – it’s just business.

Comment not just like. It may seem OK to scan through Facebook and ‘like, like, like’ but you’re not engaging with the post or the person and on LinkedIn your professional opinion counts.

Endorsements – make them for your Connections and don’t be afraid to ask for them in return, especially if you have delivered a top notch service or product to a client – it’s a great time to ask.

Only make a recommendation if you know the person, have used their products or services or someone you know well has, because these are genuine and worth their weight in gold – a proper 10/10 weighting.

Your profile picture needs to be professional, recent and look like you! NO holiday snaps from the beach here please!

Well wishing is all well and good but no Happy Birthdays just work Anniversaries with added text to the standard lines LinkedIn generates for you when you say Congrats!
Our lovely guests came armed with some really good questions which as a team are often asked when out and about.

  1. Am I over connecting?
  2. Should I answer every InMail?
  3. How do I create lead generation posts?
  4. Should I update my network in notifications when I make a change to my account or post something new?
  5. How do I get involved in a debate
  6. How can I be helpful without giving too much away?

And you’ll just have to book into the Autumn session to find out for yourselves!

Our next #LinkedInHero session will be on 22nd September so let us know if you would like us to reserve you a place by emailing sara@cariadmarketing.com. In the meantime you have work to do – just 10 minutes a day and a quarterly half-hour review of your profile will do wonders for you!

For further information on LinkedIn profile management and objective setting, please give us a call on 01992 582 824 or send us a LinkedIn message via our Cariad Page


April Fools’ Ads – Triumph or Tumble?

You can’t fool a fool, right? Well in recent years, advertising campaigns have sought to trick the best of the best with far-fetched prank marketing campaigns. The follow up research has suggested that when done correctly, campaigns of this nature can actually generate a hugely positive response with likes, shares and comments. Good news for the Klout score too!

For example, Audi caused a stir when it launched a digital marketing campaign to advertise its new autonomous office chair, bragging pre-programmed settings such as tea break fly-by to grab a cuppa and office-geek-avoidance preferences. I can image this is a popular YouTube and Google keyword search on coffee breaks. It also brings to mind our Mary’s story of waking up in front of the TV one evening to the first episode of The Office, and being in a sleepy daze was convinced by her family that her outrage was justified towards this reality show office working environment!

David Brent - The Office

Image from www.thetimes.co.uk

Although ask a seven year old girl whether this most shared Prank Barbie campaign was actually meant to trick anyone, and you may get a different answer. Girls were asked to imagine they could do anything in the adult world and much to the amusement of the surrounding adults, the children took their new roles very seriously!

Cariad’s Top 7 April Fools’ Prank Ads

  1. Justine and Virgin Atlantic’s 2013 Glass Bottomed planes:

Justine says it fooled her and her family so much that they still laugh about it 3 years on. See what you think here.

  1. Sophie, our very own Queen of the #selfie

Sophie loves this USA Today prank from last year which had people fooled  when they announced that the the Selfie stick was to be replaced by the selfie shoe.  (Secretly, Sophie is gutted they aren’t real!)  Say Cheese!

  1. Ant and Dec and Anton Du Beke tongue-twister

Last year the Radio Times played a joke on it’s readers saying that Anton Du Beke would be joining the Geordie Duo from now on transforming the act to Ant and Dec and Du Beke Show. Try saying that with your mouth full!

Anton Du Beke

Image from www.standard.co.uk

  1. The 2015 Samsung Galaxy BLADE edge Smart Knife certainly cut through Dateme’s algorithm to make it to our list. He even showed me where the Samsung Newsroom Team had added a link to a chef’s collection page to add authenticity to the advertisement. Dateme says: ‘I imagine it seriously disrupted the SEO for the website. They probably had more than just a lot of spam to cut through (see what he did there?) and irrelevant page bounces following that fake digital marketing campaign’.
  1. Last December Jack was in awe of the controversial Christmas digital marketing Campaign run by German supermarket Edeka.  It was perhaps not so widely seen in the UK but it followed the same theme as the John Lewis ads to tackle loneliness at Christmas with Age UK.  The Irish Mirror jumped on the joke, paying tribute to national treasure Louis Walsh:
Louis Walsh Moon

Image from irishmirror.ie

  1. Annalisa and Sara’s hot favourite!

With over 15,000 YouTube views, Aldi’s rip off Ad of the original 1997 Diet Coke break TV Ad, which rocketed the soft drinks brand to further fame with the ladies, now compares hot cross buns from it’s own shelves with that of Marks & Spencers.

Take a look at this chap’s hot cross buns here!

Hot Buns

Image by www.davidreviews.com

Image by www.davidreviews.com

And finally….

  1. George, Alex and James are still laughing as I type this now – the Google autocompleter guy! Michael Taylor claims that he predicts what people are thinking and about to type into a keyword search and types faster than the Searcher to get the keyword search results up on their screens in super fast time. Watch this – Google’s very own Autocompleter.

So that’s our quick list of pranks for April Fools’ Day 2016: jokes, rip offs and fun marketing tricks. We’d love to hear yours in a spare 5 minutes of fun on 1st April, and hope you have enjoyed ours. But don’t forget – you only have until midday to pull off your tomfoolery. If you’re struggling for ideas, what about a link to a fun prank post from your social media channel like this one from the Domino’s Pizza Twitter account.

You can follow @CariadMarketing to see what we’ll be getting up to for April Fools’ Day.


Top 9 Women in Hertfordshire Business to follow

As a working woman and Mum in Hertfordshire, I’m interested in business networking, lead generation and growing my potential client list. So when it comes to Social Media I’m constantly thinking about likeminded people – women in Hertfordshire businesses, who may also like to find, follow and share ideas with me. When I first set up my Twitter account, I started to search for these women on Social Media. I’ve built up a great Twitter community (you can follow me @sarah_cariad ) of women in Hertfordshire business who I follow, some of whom follow me back and some of whom I need to do a bit more work to capture their interest to get them to follow me!

Over the past few months I’ve sought out leading women in Hertfordshire businesses on Twitter who have grabbed my attention – sharing and absorbing ideas which I can then adapt to fit my own business goals, and develop innovative business tips and suggestions for clients.

When it comes to following people of influence, it’s also worth checking out who they follow too for inspiration, where they may get ideas to take back to their own business.

This list is not exhaustive, but mentions women I have come across in the past few weeks, excluding of course our very own super woman in Hertfordshire, Cariad’s MD Justine Perry (you can follow her on Twitter here @justine_cariad ). My list is based not only on their Klout score, but also via general information sharing on blogs and website articles, offline presence at business related functions and retweets to their favourite news pieces.

So, here’s who I’ve recently found to be the …

Top 9 Most Prolific Women in Hertfordshire Business on Twitter

In no particular order:

  1. @HertsHour business owner Dawn-Louise has grown her hugely successful live conversation (#HertsHour) business service to a following of more than 6,800 since June 2013. Join the chat between 8 – 9pm on a Monday evening for guaranteed 2-way conversation, likes and retweets from other Hertfordshire businesses. Klout score 57.

    Dawn-Louise

    Dawn-Louise runs #HertsHour every Monday 8-9pm

  1. Catherine Smith of Foxholes Farm, an award winning family business based near Hertford town centre, has not only grown her business offline with an extensive farm shop with a fresh meat counter and gift hampers, outside venue to hire, farm visits, campervan and caravan storage and tea room but online too. Her social media engagement contains a great text to image ratio which inspires great interaction with her target audience. Klout score 49.
  2. @EnterpriseMums, with over 1,000 Followers by January 2016, there’s no doubt that working Hertfordshire Mums are out in force! With a Klout score of 44, this term time only support group is highly supportive on working Mums and returning to work Mums who are looking for inspiration for start-up business, as well as trading to grow their businesses.
  1. Sarah Smits of Ashbourne Insurance isn’t only part of the Hertfordshire Twitterati pack, but a keen Facebooker too. Finance Director of her family run business and mum of two, her social media engagement in both business and social arenas, ensure that her regular presence on social media keeps @Ashbournesarah and @AshbourneBert in the mind’s eye of her existing and target client network. Offline too, her social presence at networking events, award launch evenings and ceremonies, and Herts Chamber of Commerce functions has secured her place on the list too. Sarah actively posts on Hertfordshire events, as well as attending them too. Klout Score 44.

    Sarah Smits

    Sarah Smits of Ashbourne Insurance is a inspirational woman in Hertfordshire Business

  1. Julie Palmer, Editor of Hertfordshire Mercury and Midweek Mercury has a fairly strong Klout score of 49 although could be much higher considering her profession and the opportunities to build engagement via social media engagement. Perhaps adding more images to her posts and adding a written comment to her retweets would improve this score, but in terms of being at the hub of a Hertfordshire business centre, her senior editor role at Herts and Essex Newspapers, places her firmly on this list for me.
  2. Tracey Baum is a Mindset Coach and Trainer based at Life Practise St. Albans, she posts regularly on all three of the social media channels linked to her website. She has started the year with flying colours with good engagement, with almost 700 followers, since October 2012. Klout score 45.
  3. With 6,300 Followers and over 21,000 Tweets Debbie Gilbert, a keen networker and event organiser, recently launching Best Business Women Awards in 2015. If Debbie finds your post relevant to her clients and business in Hertfordshire, she is sure to get on board with a campaign and support your cause. Klout score 53.
  1. Dee Clayton is a motivational speaker, author and public specking trainer and her daily posts share both motivational and inspirational advise on public speaking. Her presence is 2 fold on Twitter, both to advertise her business services, but to position herself as a thought leader in her field. Klout score 49.
  1. Yolanda Rugg is the Chief Executive of Hertfordshire Chamber of Commerce which representing Chamber members’ interests along with supporting business growth not just in Hertfordshire, but globally. Yolanda has almost 2,000 followers and an impressionable Klout score of 43.

    Yolanda Rugg

    Yolanda Rugg is Chief Executive of Hertfordshire Chamber of Commerce

 

Top tips for following on Twitter

  • Follow people in your industry
  • Find and follow people who do what you do in your home town
  • Engage with their posts, spark debate and share your opinion
  • Be selective about who you
  • Be engaging, try not to always just hit the like/share button without adding a thought or interesting point.
  • Follow up from networking events, meetings and expo’s by seeking out the people you’ve met. (I even ask if I can connect via LinkedIn with people when I’m back at the office – no-one has said no yet!)

Create lists and have a targeted business and personna you follow:

  • Famous Business people and businesses such as Deborah Meaden, and Google
  • Clients and new contacts at networking events Business Networking in Hertfordshire
  • Friends and relatives businesses
  • Industry Award categories
  • Competitors near and far for industry news
  • Neighbouring businesses in the town and county where you work and live

For more information and support with Twitter management, tip & tricks, please get in touch at enquiries@cariadmarketing.com or call the team for a chat on 01992 582 824.


21 things to do when there is a BT broadband outage

Today’s BT broadband outage affected Hertford this afternoon, so our digital marketing team all got together and made a list of what to do…

  • Write a blog!
  • Put the kettle on
  • Walk across the office to speak to a colleague instead of emailing
  • Practise origami skills
  • Do your filing
  • Draft your emails
  • Go for a walking meeting
  • Phone instead of email
  • Empty the bin
  • Do the shredding
  • Catch up on the photocopying
  • Use external hard drive to share info
  • Delete unwanted emails
  • File your emails
  • Make a Vlog
  • Draft a job description (okay, that’ll only be Justine then!)
  • Do your homework
  • Read a book
  • Water your desk plants
  • Organise your desktop icons
  • Prepare for tomorrow…. there will be a torrent of emails waiting for you!

So there you have it. If there is a power outage by BT or any other internet provider, you’ll have plenty to do next time!


A Great 2015 for Cariad Marketing

Well I think it’s safe to say that as a multi-award winning digital marketing agency, Cariad Marketing has had a rather awesome year. From winning gold for Best Online Marketing campaign at the new Hertfordshire Digital Awards to new team members, Cariad Towers has been a hive of activity so, in true New Years’ spirit we thought we’d take a moment to reflect on those moments that have brought smiles to our faces in 2015.

New Cariad Marketing Team Members

The ever expanding Cariad Marketing team has seen no less than 6 new members to its growing brood. We’ve even had an office re-jig to house some rather funky new furniture to accommodate the inpouring talent.

Emma, Julie and Sophie at the Cariad Christmas Party

Emma, Julie and Sophie at the Cariad Christmas Party

At the start of the year, our first addition was Emma, a self-proclaimed Digital Disrupter in her own right, and wow, that girl has certainly shaken things up here! Heading up the Client Services Team with her newly appointed assistant Jack, she is Google AdWords Certified, and oversees all our clients and their digital marketing strategies including Social Media, Email Marketing, PPC, SEO and Content Marketing. Supporting her social media management is the often hilarious and out of the box thinking, Social Media Specialist Mary.

Most recently since the summer, the Delivery Team have welcomed an influx of digital dynamos: 2 Senior SEO Executives, Dateme and Annalisa working full-time on client SEO accounts, as well as full-time apprentice Alex who is also studying Digital Marketing at North Herts College.

Jack and Alex on their joint First day at Cariad Marketing

Jack and Alex on their joint First day at Cariad Marketing

Google Changes

Every year, Google enhances user-experience on the world’s most popular search engine. In April, a new change brought in saw mobile-friendly websites beginning to  rank higher than non-responsive websites in search from mobile devices and tablets. Cariad Marketing were ahead of the game, advising clients and new business enquiries to ‘get responsive’ in light of these changes, and 2016 will see Cariad further support clients in the transition over to responsive websites.

Digital Marketing Award Success

Success has come in droves this year. Cariad has seen more award recognition than ever before on the digital red carpet. In February, the excitement started with Hertfordshire Entrepreneurs Network (HEN) Growth Award. Then Top Prize at the FSB 2015 Awards for Training & Development, along with two runner up accolades for Entrepreneur of the Year for our very own founder Justine Perry and East Herts Business of the Year. The Scoot Headline award recognising efforts and achievements of British online business, and most recently this autumn the Working Mums Top Employer Award, along with two wins at the Hertfordshire Digital Awards in recognition of our success in Online Marketing campaigns and Social Media.

Justine collecting the HEN Growth Award in February 2015

Justine collecting the HEN Growth Award in February 2015

Hertfordshire Events

Support for local events, both charitable and community orientated are also at the heart of our organisation. As a Hertfordshire-based digital marketing agency we’re as keen as mustard to get involved in the local events, from throwing paint at runners for the Isabel Hospice 5km Charity Fun Run in July by sponsoring a kilometre marker station, to innovation projects including the first Ambition Broxbourne Conference in November. This fantastic event provided employers and businesses an inspirational day packed full of top thought leaders sharing their insights and knowledge across Sales and Marketing.

Predictions for 2016

It’s no accident or crystal ball that has driven our in-house experts to give you some fantastic advice on the forthcoming digital marketing predictions for 2016 either. Attending industry training courses, exhibitions and demos of new technology,  hearing thought leaders in their field speak live or over webinars, the team at Cariad Marketing love keeping their eyes and ears to the ground and are forever learning when it comes to Digital Marketing. Here’s a list of our experts’ 2016 Predictions. Read all about it here in their top tips for digital marketing:

Annalisa’s SEO 2016 Predictions

Emma’s Top 5 Predictions for Email Marketing in 2016

George’s 5 Predictions for Web Design in 2016

Mary’s Top 5 2016 Social Media Trends

Mary’s Local Marketing Online in 2016

We rounded off our year brilliantly on Friday here in Hertford, with a scrumptious meal and Secret Santa present giving in Baroosh.

#TeamCariad at Baroosh for the 2015 Christmas Party

#TeamCariad at Baroosh for the 2015 Christmas Party

Well that leaves us now to wish you all Seasons Greetings, and love, peace and joy to you and your families. We look forward to being in touch with you in 2016. Give us a call in the New Year, or pop in for a cuppa and a chat about some of the topics we’ve covered here. The Christmas period is a great time to reflect on business, so why not let us show you what we can do for your business.

That’s All Folks!


What’s SEO and how can it help my business?

Search engine optimisation (SEO) can sometimes feel like a bit of a black hole. We know it’s there but it’s not always simple to see and understand everything that is a part of it when it comes to digital marketing. So what is SEO and how can it help my business?

Keyword for searches and links to related websites was historically how SEO was born. In recent years, this has all transformed to what one could term ‘Search user optimization,’ as SEO is now premised upon creating content and websites that provide value for users. Below are some elements that are quite integral to contemporary search engine optimization:

7 Top Elements to SEO

  1. Keyword planning
  2. On page optimisation including page titles, speed, URLs structure and copy
  3. Content Marketing – posting fresh up to date, relevant (keyword rich) content in the form of blogs, case studies, white papers, newsletters and company news. Also, images like infographics, memes and gifs make great high-traffic sources when relevant image descriptions are used.
  4. Usability or User Experience
  5. Competitor analysis
  6. On site links
  7. Offsite links (otherwise known as backlinks)

So how do I know if my SEO is healthy? 

If you haven’t checked over your website for a while, an SEO report might be just what you need – there are lots of tools out there that can give you a good insight into how well your website is performing. Some of these tools are SEO Profiler, Screaming Frog, Semrush, GT Metrix, SEO Site Check-up to name but a few.

The report will highlight areas of your website which could be improved and therefore perform better for your business, such as:

  • Page Title
  • Meta descriptions
  • Headings
  • Content Quality
  • Fresh content
  • Inter-linking
  • Images
  • Page speed
  • Rich snippets/schema
  • Social media
  • URL Structure
  • Conversions
  • Analytics
  • Whether your website is mobile friendly
  • Meta Robots (like no follow, no index, no archive and no snippet)
  • Breadcrumbs (browsing trail of a visitor)
  • Redirect Commands

The report generally provides the opportunity for a company to use the findings as a ‘to do’ list for an SEO expert. There are normally some very quick and simple fixes to be done as an initial ‘blitz’ of improvements. Some maybe more detailed and will lead to more ongoing, routine efforts on a regular basis for example: social media presence, fresh content, backlink strategies and seeding plans to share your content.

So why should I invest in SEO for my business? 

SEO is a fantastic way of attracting quality, relevant visits to your website. Using clearly defined keywords helps the user find the most relevant information about your products or services. Google is very much in favour of great user experience and will mark down websites for lack of relevancy, fresh content and not being mobile friendly to name but a few.  And let’s face it, quality over quantity with regards enquiries can save everyone time, effort and money!

quality-productivity

Having fresh, good quality content on your website which is relevant to what the user is searching for should help drive visitors to make an enquiry either via a contact form you have on your website or by picking up the phone.

Unlike PPC (pay-per-click), SEO can take longer to build from a results perspective on search engines however the end result usually has greater longevity and can be much more cost-effective when compared to investing in PPC.

Do you need a helping hand?

If you think your SEO could be working harder for your business, we’d love to hear from you. If you’d like a ‘no obligation’ meeting to talk you through the health of your current SEO, get in touch. We can give you a clear idea of how to improve your website performance and SEO strategy to help generate quality enquiries for your business.

How?

To arrange a time to meet up for a coffee and chat please contact me on 01992 582 824 or email me at sarah@cariadmarketing.com to arrange a time which suits you best.


Top Tips: What to Post on Social Media

 

‘We wouldn’t know WHAT to say or WHEN to say it’

 

‘What is there to say about what I do?’

 

… are just some of the FAQs Cariad Marketing hear when it comes to social media. Perhaps your business wants to get social but doesn’t know how? Maybe you don’t think anyone will be interested in your services. Well let me tell you, the people who are online right now searching for these products and services are. And guess what? After the price comparison and product analysis is done, they’ll be checking out what sets you apart from the rest in your industry. That’s where a properly managed, appropriately marketed social media channel can put your brand a cut above the rest. Check out our mini guide of top tips on what to post on your social media channels…

 

Get organised with your social media management

What to post, when to post it and who will be watching are all really important factors to consider when deciding how to embark into the social media world. Have a really clear objective of what you wish to achieve and how you intend to go about it. Do you want to manage the channels in-house or outsource to a digital agency? Do you want followers in a specific field or do you want quality engagement with future customers? It may be that you already have success in the market place and are great at charitable donations, you just don’t let anyone know that you do it. Here’s the really important bit … at a top level an overall marketing strategy is needed before you begin.

 

Be prepared to give a little more on your social media

Social media is a fantastic opportunity to engage with existing and future clients on a personal level, the behind-the-scenes stuff. Your community may already know they need an insurance broker, but why should they pick you? It gives your business a great advantage over your competitors by giving you a personality, a human element that maybe you don’t get a chance to show when you are focusing on day-to-day liaisons.

Potential clients who are considering multiple proposals are likely to investigate each company in more detail. You need to clinch the deal over your competitors and remember people buy from people.

Giving them access to professionally managed Social Media links via your responsive website allows prospects to see what makes your business tick. Here’s a list of things we recommend our clients post and celebrate:

  • Charitable event
  • Photos of an assembly line and description of process
  • Awards ceremony
  • Welcoming a new member to the team, a birthday or retirement
  • Client visit to the office
  • Recruitment
  • Networking group attendance
  • Link to industry-related article or company blog inviting comments
  • ‘How to’ information

It could be that you’re already perceived to be a fun business, and want to use a social media platform to give information and advice on your industry to be seen as a top industry guru. Sharing is the first rule of the game.

Show me what you mean on social media

Rather than writing reams of technical jargon, you can’t beat an eye catching image. A picture really can speak a thousand words. With commuters catching up on social media news on the train or whilst having lunch, an image can mean they can still eat or strap-hang on the train one handed without having to type a reply other than ‘Like’ or ‘Follow’.

 

Show what you mean with a picture

A picture can say a thousand words on social media

Be an Industry Guru on social media

Initiating a debate by asking a question or putting a comment on an article to share an opinion to spark discussion puts you in a powerful and thought-provoking position. You will own that discussion too. We all like to be asked our opinion on a subject that we’re interested in, especially if it’s advice or a recommendation. This post gives an example of a Twitter question during the final few moments of a webinar.

Be an industry guru

Share thoughts and opinions to ignite discussion

A “voice without speaking”

Does your business have many FAQ enquiries which are time consuming and repetitive to answer? Do you just not like picking up the phone and speaking to people, or with your head under a sink repairing pipes all day do you struggle to have the time to give technical info over the phone?

Pointing an existing or potential client to a blog or a conversation on your social media channels will answer this quickly and effectively. The information is in writing, they can read it at their leisure and have a reference point, hopefully preventing a time consuming and costly phone call with a member of staff.

And in the other sense of the term ‘voice without speaking’, most Social Media platforms even allow you to browse without commenting or others knowing you have even visited that page. You can post or view a thought, picture or article without having to verbally explain a thing!

Top 6 ‘Don’t Do’s’ with your Social Media posts

  1. Don’t leave it to a new member of staff who doesn’t know the business well enough. Just because they are ‘young and in touch with that sort of thing’ doesn’t mean they hit the right tone to be the digital (online) face of the company.
  2. Don’t set up a page and commit only to adding content on an ad hoc basis. Do it or don’t.
  3. Don’t post anything. Make sure you have a reason for posting and it’s targeted to the right audience for maximising engagement opportunities.
  4. Don’t assume social media will just be a fad that runs its course. Ensure you have set your overall objectives and have a clear plan of social media channels you are posting on and what you will be posting.
  5. Don’t think that a bad review or comment is the end of the world – it can be a great chance to show how well you handle the inevitable hiccup, as long as it’s picked up quickly and handled well of course.
  6. Don’t hope that your future clients will find you first – seek them out using this fantastic business tool.

Contact Us

We would love to speak to you about social media marketing for your business. We’re really good and getting under the skin of a brand, know how to speak as the brand and understand its personality. Drop us a email or give us a call on 01992 582 824 to meet up for a 30 minute chat and we’ll show you how we can help.


10 reasons to outsource your social media

‘Haven’t got time in the business’

‘Oh, it’s another technical thing I’m not good at’

‘Leave it to the kids!’

 

Any of these sound familiar? Yes? No surprise to hear you’re not alone!

Whether you just want to dip your toe in the water and have an online presence because you know your competitors’ are and you want to join the conversation or: you want full engagement and interaction to find new business and let them know about your products and services, social media is becoming increasingly recognised as an important tool for businesses.

Managing your social media account however is a tricky sea to navigate and the thought of outsourcing it may raise further questions. Would an external agency understand the personality of the company and the products and services and be able to really get under the skin of your brand and ‘talk the talk’?

Whatever your reasons, I’d like to convince you why outsourcing your social media management to an external digital marketing agency is a very positive step to take. And with an estimated 1.5 billion users every single day, can you afford not to be part of the action?

Audience and Relevancy

Tens of thousands of new Social Media accounts are being opened every day. And this number isn’t going to decrease any time soon. Mobile access to Social Media is stronger than all other devices for logging on. There are many stats flying around about how many hours a day/month we all spend on Facebook/Twitter etc., and these are not to be ignored.

It’s true that different channels have different uses (business or personal) and age typical associations, but all have their place and often fluctuate in popularity, gender, age bracket and industry. It’s picking the right one for your business, that’s the trick.

And it’s all very well gathering Followers, but are they relevant to your marketing objectives? You may be producing fantastic content for your website which you can direct clients to, but 2,000 of your 2,063 Followers may have little or no relevance to you target audience. A Digital Marketing Agency will clean up your existing crowd and create targeted groups for specific marketing activities and timing posts.

 

Thumbs up to social media

The importance of identifying audiences and relevancy

Consistency

Sometimes you visit a company or friend’s page and they haven’t posted for ages, and the account is lying dormant.  On a business front, this isn’t a great look. It often happens when the ‘person who does the social’ leaves a company and no one is able to pick it up. Or best intentions when you set up a business, but then you get busy and forget to shout about what you are up to and keep the momentum going. Outsourcing will ensure you have a consistent presence and voice from your business regardless of a turnover of you internal staff.

Competitors

Your crowd may not only be potential clients. This is a great opportunity to see what your competitors are doing. For a small business this may seem daunting but we all watch what our favourites are up to, be that a football team, department store, band or brand. It’s a healthy way to keep up with industry related technology, techniques and products as well as helping us improve our own services. Cariad Marketing’s Emma Perrott explains when it is appropriate to block the competition, the general consensus is that by opening a Social Media account you are consenting to join an open network which fuels engagement, debate and growth. You will need therefore to ensure that this fun yet professional channel is always hitting the tone that markets your business in the way you want. Cariad will do this at a frequency that suits you, be that weekly/monthly or quarterly touching base sessions to stay focused on the objectives, keep abreast of changes and industry challenges and ensure consistency. My fellow Team Cariad social media guru Mary Finucane has written as great article on this here.

New Recruits

Your future work colleagues are likely to be keeping an eye on you and will be ready to apply when a vacancy is posted. It’s free to post and with well thought out design and links back to the website, an eye catching job advert can be shared and posted to hundreds or thousands of people. Everyone knows someone, who knows someone, looking for a job in … and your agency will know just where to find them online.

Where are they all?

So, you’ve identified your ideal client, you work with a specific industry and have got that line of business nailed. Right, where can you find more like that? Careful analysis of search trends provide vital information on when and who will be online searching for keyword specific products and services. The analytics available to social media channels now give really detailed reporting information, allowing a professional agency to specifically target your desired audience. This is all included in the price of a social media management package at Cariad Marketing.

Finding potential clients

Target your potential clients through the relevant social channels

Summary: The 10 reasons why you should outsource:

A digital marketing agency such as Cariad Marketing will not only discuss your needs and reasons for using Social Media, it will find and engage with the groups of clients and prospects that will be searching for the products, services and advise that your business provides. It will ensure the personality of the business is firmly entrenched in the posts and comments that are shown … and the best bit, no one will ever know it’s not you.

  1. Engage with clients and prospects, creating ‘hot prospect’ lists
  2. Allow you to become a debate leader and specialist in your field of expertise
  3. Be another set of eyes and ears, researching your hot prospects, offering new ideas and client groups
  4. Create a professional online company personality and character to represent them
  5. An appropriately placed link to your company website, great for SEO (search engine optimisation)
  6. Schedule timely content for discussion forums, business hours and international clients
  7. Optimising customer lifetime by keeping visible in between the times they use your services
  8. Guidance on which social media channels for your industry sector for engagement, discussion and recruitment
  9. Clearly defined targets and measurable KPIs for return of investment
  10. Free your time to focus on day to day business priorities

For more information on outsourcing Social Media channels and for top tips on how it could help your business, get in touch with us by calling 01992 582 824 or fill out a contact form.

 


Team Cariad joins Isabel Hospice Colour Me Happy Run

Join the Cariad Marketing team at the Isabel Hospice 2015 Colour Me Happy Run 2015

It’s nearly that time again, and #TeamCariad are very excited!

Who’d have thought throwing handfuls of powder paint at colleagues, err, I mean the passing runners all in the name of fundraising could be SO much fun!

The Welwyn Garden City based Hospice has been providing free palliative care and support to any adult, with a life-limiting disease in the Hertfordshire community since 1982. Part-funded by the NHS locally, the majority of income is from fundraising and with 2015 running costs of £4.9m, and a target of £2.9m to be found from charitable donations, the Colour Run 2015 is a valuable contribution to this figure.

2014 was Cariad’s first year of sponsoring the 3k marker station and of course we chose Cariad red, here’s the calm before the storm …

The Cariad team pre paint

The Cariad Marketing team at the red station before the paint mayhem started

2015 brings sees our new Cariad Team members joining the event: Mary, Sophie and Lesley – and they’re in for a treat!

We’ve had our t-shirts printed again but runners are provided with a white t-shirt upon registration. You’re encouraged to wear old, white clothes for maximum effect when passing through the 5 colour stations, so that you can gather the rainbow and prove they’ve passed each marker. This is what the red station ended up looking like …

The Cariad Marketing team post the paint mayhem!

The Cariad Marketing team were well and truly covered in Cariad-red paint after the Colour Run

 

I think most of us were still finding red powder behind our ears and blowing it out of our noses a few days later! It’s a great event for all the family whether you run, throw paint or support from the side-lines. So why not don your trainers and join us for an active fun morning.

 

You can Register Here online or call Beth Hardy at the Isabel Hospice on 01707 382 500

 

Address:  Leventhorpe School, Sawbridgeworth CM21 1BY

 

Meet date and time: Sunday 26th July. Meet from 10am, Race Starts at 11:30am, Event Ends at 1:30pm


Meet the team: Sarah

Name

Sarah Hollingsworth

 

Role

Account Executive

 

When did you join Cariad Marketing?

June 2014

 

What do you enjoy most about your role?

I’m no shy retiring wall-flower, so I love the networking part of my role. Cariad Marketing already had a fantastic reputation when I joined the team last year so it’s lovely to be readily accepted onto the networking scene as a new member of the company. Because the business is growing so rapidly with new members of staff and new services, I always have something new and informative to say.

 

Where do you see the future of digital marketing going for brands?

The reality is, if you’re not online, you’re nowhere to be seen. Digital marketing is only going to grow, it’s not going away. Searches from mobile devices and tablets are on the increase and raising brand awareness with a mobile-friendly website is crucial: Ensuring the products and services that your business offers are being found online, by the people who are searching for them at that moment in time. Filling our clients’ websites with relevant, regular and optimised content is what we do best.

 

My proudest achievement at Cariad is…

Is when I go to a networking event or award ceremony and see how our hard work has reaped such great rewards, or awards lately!

 

And finally … where’s your favourite place to lunch in Hertford?

On a warm, sunny day eating outside with my 3 children by the river on Hartham Common is the best place to be. We sometimes phone ahead to pre-order take away sandwiches from Rose’s Café if we’ve been river dipping or kayaking and fancy a picnic. Dining in adult company however, Lussman’s, everytime.

 

Want to chat to Sarah about how Cariad Marketing can help your business with digital marketing? Call her on 01992 582 824

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