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On December 23, Mashable posted a list of the 150 Best Business and Marketing Resources From 2010. That's a lot of reading! In case you don't have 12 hours to spare, here's a condensed list of the 10 most practical and actionable articles for marketing your local small businesses in 2011. (Summaries excerpted from articles.)
8 Ways to Reduce Your Site's Bounce Rate
With the explosion of social media sharing and help from smart search engine optimization, many web users are bypassing businesses' home pages and landing directly on product pages and blog posts. Thus, businesses need to optimize their "first impressions" at all entry points in order to reduce bounce rates.
4 Tips for Writing SEO-Friendly Blog Posts
You could spend thousands of dollars to have a search marketing firm optimize your business's blog for search engines, but chances are that you can learn a lot of the fundamentals yourself, saving yourself a lot of money as long as you have the interest and the time. Here's a basic primer on Search Engine Optimization (SEO) for your company's blog.
HOW TO: Optimize Your Site for Search Engine Marketing
While social media may have the media's attention and Twitter and Facebook are garnering a lot of the hype, search still trumps them when it comes to driving traffic and being discovered by potential new customers.
HOW TO: Market Your Small Business With No Budget
In fact, the toughest challenge facing small business marketers these days is not cost, but finding a strategy to get your message heard over the din of a noisy Internet. For advice on this, we checked in with a few experienced social media marketers. Here's what they had to offer.
HOW TO: Use Social Media for Lead Generation
Social media is the top emerging channel for lead generation among technology marketing professionals according to the annual Unisfair marketing survey. Being that social media is a great place to attract new customers, we put together a quick guide on how to use social media for lead generation.
Why Complaining Customers Can Be Good For Your Business
Companies love positive feedback. But what about when feedback is, well, less than pleasant? Rather than try to sweep these unhappy customers under the rug, look at them as a challenge and an opportunity to improve your brand and leverage them for some publicity.
HOW TO: Build A Twitter Strategy for Your Business
A lot of social media advice revolves around confusing, high-concept buzzwords: There are only so many times you can be told to "listen" and "engage." Concrete advice can be hard to come by, and while this guide won't tell you what you need to tweet, it will provide you with the real questions you need to ask in order to craft a Twitter strategy for your business.
HOW TO: Use QR Codes for Small Business Marketing
A Quick Response (QR) code is a two-dimensional code that can be scanned by smartphone cameras to automatically pull up text, photos, videos, music and URLs. These codes have become mobile-friendly ways to point people in the offline space to online resources.
HOW TO: Make a Successful Marketing Video for the Web In today's YouTube crazed society, video is more accessible and easier to create than ever... This is why small businesses must learn to properly utilize videos to market their services on the web. These same videos can also be used in offline and online branding, sales, marketing and PR strategies. A great video will pay off ten-fold.
Why SMS Marketing Still Makes Sense for Small Business
While the Western world has focused on smartphones and flashy apps, SMS marketing is still a hugely important part of our mobile lives. Companies or small business that can nail down their SMS marketing strategy, especially when the space is still ripe for innovation, can open up a number of opportunities.
And best of all, you now have an extra 11 hours to enjoy Chrismas with your family!