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Is Your SEO Firm a Disaster Waiting to Happen?

Writing by Shawna Wright in SEO


SEO Disaster

Over the last few years Brick Marketing has talked with many site owners who have burned by their SEO firms. Some were paying a monthly "maintenance" fee but no work other than pulling keyword ranking reports was getting done. Others would go months without hearing from their SEO firm, even if they just had a simple question. And worst of all, a few were actually penalized because of black hat or outdated link building activities their SEO firm had done. It's unfortunate that the SEO industry has a whole has such a poor reputation, because there are so many fantastic SEO firms that really care about their clients. But with no real barrier to entry anyone can throw up a website and claim to be an SEO expert. Part of being in the SEO industry means teaching potential clients about what NOT to do with their SEO, and that includes who CLICK HERE TO READ MORE...

Do’s and Don’ts of Responding to Negative Social Media Comments

Writing by Nick Stamoulis in Social Media


girl yelling

If you’re willing to put the time in, social media is great for business. It serves as an outlet to inform your target audience, gain exposure, and make connections. Yet, it’s not always going to be sunshine and rainbows. A social media page opens your business up to receiving comments of any variety. And they might not always be good. Every business is bound to receive a few negative comments on their page here and there. What’s important to understand is that it’s not so much the negative comment that will impact your business. It’s more about how you CLICK HERE TO READ MORE...

The Potential Fallout of Cutting Back on Facebook Posts

Writing by Danielle Bachini in Social Media


don't stop

Marketers know that Facebook marketing isn’t as easy or straightforward as it should be. Ideally, the process would be simple. You create a company page, share status updates via that page, and those updates show up in the News Feeds of people that have “Liked” you. But this is Facebook, and they are known for making things more difficult. The News Feed isn’t just a stream of updates from people or pages that you have liked. Instead, it’s a stream of updates that Facebook chooses to show you from people or pages that you have liked. Facebook’s News Feed algorithm CLICK HERE TO READ MORE...

Make the Most of Your LinkedIn Posts

Writing by Nick Stamoulis in Social Media


share

First things first. If you want to succeed in online marketing today, you need to be creating quality content on a regular basis and sharing that content with a social following that should steadily increase over time. In the B2B sector specifically, perhaps the most important social channel to be dedicating resources towards is LinkedIn. Whereas the other top social networks are used for a variety of reasons, LinkedIn is focused on business and business relationships and your business focused content isn’t going to be overshadowed by pictures of babies or cats. The first step towards LinkedIn marketing success CLICK HERE TO READ MORE...

Get More From Your Website Visitors

Writing by Danielle Bachini in Website Design


make things happen

As any web marketer will tell you, it’s hard work getting traffic to your site! It requires an investment of time and money. Marketing dollars are spent on website visitors that come from SEO, PPC, advertisements, email newsletters, social media, and more. Due to the cost involved, you want to get the most out of each visitor and your website should be designed to do just that. Remember, every page of your website is potentially a landing page. It’s great to get the visitor to that page, but then what? If they finish reading that page but then aren’t CLICK HERE TO READ MORE...

Name Your Images Before Uploading Them

Writing by Brick Marketing in Web Development


Name Your Image Files

While images on a site usually fall under the domain of website design, there is one component of adding images to your site that also involves web development – its code. Whenever you upload an image (i.e. a JPEG or a PNG file), it is translated into HTML code on the back end of the site. Even though your images are visual components and not text on the front end of the site, each image involves some coding on the back end. Because there is some coding that goes into the images on your site, it is important that you name CLICK HERE TO READ MORE...

That Old Blog Post is Worth More Than You Think!

Writing by Shawna Wright in Content Marketing


Old Blog

When you publish a new blog post and promote it across your social channels there is usually a flurry of activity. It gets shared, Liked, tweeted, read-through, and more. But within a day or two (unless that post goes viral) the traffic and activity usually falls off. The organic value of that post won't actually kick in for several weeks, or maybe even months, depending on what the post is about, how much competition there is around that topic, and what kind of value it has built up since the day you published that blog. But once a blog post CLICK HERE TO READ MORE...

Content is For Your Target Audience First, SEO Second

Writing by Nick Stamoulis in Content Marketing


Content is For Your Target Audience First, SEO Second

Any good SEO company is going to tout the benefits of producing high quality content on a regular basis for SEO purposes. Content is what fuels an SEO campaign, generates natural inbound links, and improves social media efforts. However, it’s important to note that ultimately, content needs to be produced for the right reasons. It shouldn’t just be produced to publish additional pages that include keywords to attract the search spiders. The primary target for your content is your target audience, the human web users that are interested in your products or services. The content that you publish needs to CLICK HERE TO READ MORE...

Link Building Is Really About Relationships

Writing by Shawna Wright in Link Building


Relationship Building

Moz recently put out a new guide to link building which anyone relatively new to SEO should check out! One of the things I really appreciated is how much the author wrote about the human element of link building--people create links because they see some value in doing so. Having a relationship with the people you want to get links from could make or break your link building campaign! Ideally, before you actually start a link building campaign, you should have a rough idea of who you think will care about what you’re doing. If you create a piece of CLICK HERE TO READ MORE...

Does Your Website Have a Clear Focus?

Writing by Nick Stamoulis in SEO


Clear Focus

When we receive an inquiry from a prospective client, the first thing we do is take a look at their website since that’s where we’ll be spending the majority of our time. If it’s not almost immediately clear what the company does or what products they sell, we already have hesitations about working with them. That’s because we’ve found that the clients that often have the most SEO success are the ones that specialize in one niche and the website is built to support that. A website that focuses on one specific thing is straightforward. Both visitors and the search CLICK HERE TO READ MORE...

Responding to Comments is Part of a Social Marketing Campaign

Writing by Danielle Bachini in Social Media


comment

There is so much more to a social media marketing campaign than merely setting up the company page and adding a bio and maybe a few pictures. Yet that’s all that so many companies do! A company social media page needs to be an active and engaging entity. That means that it needs to be updated often with useful and informative posts. There are plenty of companies that do keep their pages active, but then they disregard one crucial component of social media- being social! Regularly posting content is great, but without the conversation piece the company social media page CLICK HERE TO READ MORE...

Four Things NOT to Include In Your New Website

Writing by Michael Lupacchino in Web Development


Four Things NOT to Include In Your New Website

As a business owner, you should make sure that you redesign your website every few years. Not only does it allow you to update your site with the newest web technologies, but is also give you a chance to ditch outdated or redundant web items or content. Just as new technologies emerge, others become dated and should be put to rest. Here are 4 things NOT to include in your new website during your website redesign: Pop-Up or Splash Windows Splash windows that are essentially a window of content layered on top of a site's homepage or pop-up windows are annoying, outdated, CLICK HERE TO READ MORE...

3 Places to Find New Linking Opportunities

Writing by Shawna Wright in Link Building


Link Building Opportunities

In today's world of SEO, easy-win linking opportunities are getting fewer and farther in-between. While there are some great easy-win linking opportunities to be had when you first set out, most easy-win links tend to be junk; they are low-quality sites, they have no real editorial process in place when publishing content, no social presence of their own, and so forth. Anyone that has been working on link building and link earning for about 6 months knows that new link opportunities can be a pain to uncover, so here are 3 places to look when you feel like you are CLICK HERE TO READ MORE...

Why B2Bs Should Be Using Facebook, Not Just LinkedIn

Writing by Nick Stamoulis in Social Media


facebook

There’s no question that B2Bs should be active on LinkedIn. After all it’s a social network with a business focus. People sign in to their LinkedIn account to read business related articles, make business connections, and update their professional profile. That’s why it’s no surprise that in a recent report from Social Media Examiner, the majority of B2B marketers surveyed said that LinkedIn was the most important social platform for their business. What was somewhat surprising is that the majority was just 33%. Just behind that, at 31%, was Facebook. Twitter was listed at just 16%. From CLICK HERE TO READ MORE...

5 Qualities of the Best Guest Blog Posts

Writing by Danielle Bachini in Content Marketing


5 Qualities of the Best Guest Blog Posts

Guest blog posting might not be the SEO link building tactic that it once was, but that’s actually a good thing! It’s weeding out the low quality “just for links” posts. The people/businesses that have kept guest blog posting in their content marketing strategies are doing it for the right reason, to gain visibility. The Best Guest Blog Posts: Match the blog audience’s interests There may be plenty of blogs out there that accept guest posts, after all it’s very difficult to keep a blog active with just your own content, but that doesn’t mean that you should send your guest blog post CLICK HERE TO READ MORE...

How to Conduct an SEO Friendly Website Content Audit

Writing by Nick Stamoulis in Content Marketing


content

As a business evolves, its website needs to evolve along with it. A website redesign is recommended every few years to keep things fresh, but what also needs to stay fresh is the website content. When redesigning a website, it’s a good time to conduct a content audit too so that the new site launches with the best possible content. However, a redesign isn’t necessary to evaluate your content and make tweaks. That can be done at any time. It’s a manual process that can take quite a bit of time (especially for larger sites) so it’s best to plan CLICK HERE TO READ MORE...

5 Things to Do When Curating Content for Social Media

Writing by Danielle Bachini in Social Media


5 Things to Do When Curating Content for Social Media

Online marketing is about content. Specifically in the B2B sector, content is what gains brand visibility and generates leads. Every company should be creating content, publishing it on the company blog, and sharing it in social media. Of course, creating quality content is no easy task. It requires time and resources. That’s why it’s recommended to supplement your own content and links in social media with links to content that was created by others that will also benefit your target audience and social media followers. In addition to keeping your social accounts active, content curation is a way to spread CLICK HERE TO READ MORE...

What’s New in WordPress 4.0

Writing by Brick Marketing in Web Development


New in WordPress 4.0

WordPress has quickly become an industry leading content management system (CMS) for businesses worldwide. Nick-named “Benny” after Jazz Musician Benny Goodman, WordPress 4.0 is now available and numerous publications and industry leaders are talking about the update, which includes improvements for writing and posting content, changes to the user interface, and enhanced options for adding and embedding media. Why Should I Update My WordPress? Like with any form of software, a CMS does need to be updated from time to time. Updates may include security updates, bug fixes, and enhancements that (usually) work to improve the user experience. By upgrading to CLICK HERE TO READ MORE...

SEO Is Long Term…So Are You Willing to Wait?

Writing by Shawna Wright in SEO


SEO Is Long Term...So Are You Willing to Wait?

Just the other day I was talking with a client whose site was hit by a penalty after they made drastic changes to the content on their homepage. They recently (within the last two weeks) reverted back to the old content in hopes that would undo the penalty. Just the other day they emailed me, asking why their site hasn't rebounded yet. And how long would it take for the link building (that we just started mind you) to help grow their organic presence past their old ranking point. I had to remind this client that just because you make a CLICK HERE TO READ MORE...

What Makes Content “Share Worthy”?

Writing by Nick Stamoulis in Content Marketing


What Makes Content “Share Worthy”?

Content creation doesn’t come easy. It takes a lot of time, effort, and resources to create quality content. If you’re investing so much in content, you obviously want to get the absolute most out of it. To some, the goal is to create content that will “go viral”. Let’s be honest here, of all of the content published on the web only a small fraction hits viral status. Getting your content to go viral might not be a realistic goal, but certainly a respectable amount of shares and links would be nice. So what can you do to increase the chances CLICK HERE TO READ MORE...

3 Ways Be a Better Business Blogger

Writing by Shawna Wright in Content Marketing


Business Blogging

There is no denying that business blogging is a huge part of being a successful online brand. The content you produce not only helps you grow your organic presence, but it also builds your brand's reputation, helps your site earn links naturally, feeds your social media presence, and more. But being a better business blogger means constantly looking for ways to improve your own writing skills, looking for hot topics to blog about, tweaking your tone to meet your audiences' needs, and more. Here are 3 more ways to be a better business blogger: Find the right frequency for your audience. Some sites CLICK HERE TO READ MORE...

3 Ways to Get More Twitter Followers

Writing by Nick Stamoulis in Social Media


3 Ways to Get More Twitter Followers

Twitter can be used to gain visibility and as a lead generation tool for businesses. Sure, Twitter has lots of noise to compete with, but that just means that a Twitter strategy requires some time and effort. Simply obtaining a Twitter handle, uploading an image of your logo, adding a brief description, and linking over to your website isn’t enough to result in meaningful connections that could ultimately result in leads or sales down the road. Twitter requires a daily investment in order to gain followers that could eventually turn into something more and have an impact on your bottom CLICK HERE TO READ MORE...

Make Time for Social Media

Writing by Danielle Bachini in Social Media


Make Time for Social Media

When discussing the important role that social media activity plays in SEO, we often hear the grumbles from our small business clients. “But we just don’t have the time to do social media”, they say. Well, we’re here to tell you that you need to start making time. Social media can be many things to many people. Sure, some people prefer to use social media strictly for personal reasons- to keep in touch with family and friends and post pictures of their cats and babies. But there is a growing segment of people that use social media to connect with CLICK HERE TO READ MORE...

Another One Bites the Dust as Google Kills Authorship

Writing by Shawna Wright in Search Engines


Google Authorship

John Mueller, Webmaster Trends Analyst at Google, announced last week that Google will be discontinuing its support for authorship in search results. Back in June, author photos were dropped from search results, supposedly to help reduce clutter and create a "better mobile experience and a more consistent design across devices." This latest announcement for authorship means that the rel=author markup will no longer be tracked on websites. We've gotten lots of useful feedback from all kinds of webmasters and users, and we've tweaked, updated, and honed recognition and displaying of authorship information. Unfortunately, we've also observed that this information CLICK HERE TO READ MORE...

What You Must Do to See SEO Results

Writing by Danielle Bachini in SEO


What You Must Do to See SEO Results

If you want to be successful with SEO, it’s not the sort of thing that you can “half-you know what”. You need to be fully committed from the onset of the campaign and pledge to keep things moving at a regular pace no matter what the results are looking like or no matter how frustrated you become. White hat SEO is a long term process, a tortoise/hare sort of situation. Slow and steady wins the race. If you want to see SEO results, the following elements of an SEO campaign aren’t optional, they are absolute musts: Keyword research Keywords remain at the foundation CLICK HERE TO READ MORE...

Reasons Why Your Content Isn’t Getting Shared

Writing by Nick Stamoulis in Content Marketing


Reasons Why Your Content Isn’t Getting Shared

There are many reasons to be creating content on behalf of your business. Content informs your target audience and establishes your business as a thought leader in the industry which generates trust. This is the top goal of content, but another goal of content should be to get it shared. Content that is shared in the form of links on other web pages or within social media helps to improve your SEO efforts. If you have a respectable social media following but notice that your content is getting very few shares, or maybe even no shares, you might be CLICK HERE TO READ MORE...

Feed Your Social Media Machine

Writing by Danielle Bachini in Social Media


Feed Your Social Media Machine

Social media is a must for businesses of all sizes and from all industries today. In addition to a business website, a business social media page serves as an additional source of information for the consumer. It can aid in the decision making process during the consideration stage or encourage repeat purchases from existing customers. Consumers expect a business to have a social media presence today just as much as they expect a business to have its own website. In the minds of many, a business today that lacks social media pages lacks credibility. What those businesses also lack is CLICK HERE TO READ MORE...

How Site Speed Impacts Website Performance

Writing by Brick Marketing in Web Development


How the Speed of Your Website Impacts Performance

Most of us access the internet over high-speed broadband or wireless networks, leaving dial-up internet a thing of the past. Even though most users are able to surf the web at high speeds, the speed at which your website operates is a major factor in how the site performs not only in search, but as a website overall. If you are building or redesigning a website, you need to make sure that your content and back-end are all set up so that there are no lags in your website speed. Here are just a few ways that site speed affects CLICK HERE TO READ MORE...

How Much Traffic is that Blog Really Worth?

Writing by Shawna Wright in Content Marketing


How Much Traffic is that Blog Really Worth?

In July 2012 this client's blog pulled in 3,416 visitors. Two years later that number hit 14,892! That's more than a 400% increase in traffic to the blog over a two year period. How exactly did we grow traffic to the blog so substantially in such a relatively short amount of time? First off, we committed to at least two blog posts a week every week. Every single one of those posts was optimized for SEO and promoted on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn through both the company page and various LinkedIn groups. That heavy social promotion was great for a surge CLICK HERE TO READ MORE...

Ways to Build Your Content Audience

Writing by Nick Stamoulis in Content Marketing


Ways to Build Your Content Audience

In a recent interview with Jeffrey Rohrs, VP of ExactTarget’s Marketing Insights Team, we asked him how a website owner can get their content the attention it deserves. His response: “Content marketers need to understand that publication does not equal distribution. “Build it and they will come” strategies are a path to failure for websites, mobile apps, videos, and content of every shape and size. Accordingly, content marketers need to take a greater interest in helping their companies build what I call proprietary audiences—the subscribers, fans, followers, and other direct audiences that you can reach with the push of a button CLICK HERE TO READ MORE...

Who Is Linking to Your Website?

Writing by Shawna Wright in Link Building


Who Is Linking to Your Website?

It's a post-Penguin world and for better or worse we need to be aware of who is linking to our sites. Google doesn't care if you didn't ask for that link and had no hand in building it, if it shows up in your link profile it's your responsibility. As unfair as that may seem it's the new SEO world we live in and it's important you know who is linking to your website (and how they are linking) so you aren't caught unawares the next time the Penguin refresh goes into effect. Here are three ways you can find who CLICK HERE TO READ MORE...

How Long Should Blog Posts Be?

Writing by Nick Stamoulis in Content Marketing


How Long Should Blog Posts Be?

Once we convince our clients that a blog hosted on their company website is an SEO “must have”, we usually get two questions. The first question, “How often should we publish blog posts?” The answer to that is as often as you can while maintaining high quality content. Regular posting means more web pages on the site that can rank for your industry keywords and keeps your social accounts active with links pointing back to your site. Once a week is ideal, more than that if you have the bandwidth to do so. The second question, “How long should the CLICK HERE TO READ MORE...

Think Like a PR Pro to Earn Links

Writing by Danielle Bachini in Link Building


Think Like a PR Pro to Earn Links

The term link building will still be used in SEO circles, however the nature of link building has changed. It’s more about link earning as opposed to link building now. That’s because the best links that you can have pointing to your site are the ones that occur naturally. It’s not about a website owner or the SEO team that they hire placing a link on a site. It’s about a site owner, on their own and without any money passing hands, deciding that another website is relevant enough and informative enough to link over to. These are the types CLICK HERE TO READ MORE...

Why You Need to Update Your Website Continuously

Writing by Brick Marketing in Web Development


Continously Update Website

Building a website takes a lot of time and energy. From reviewing web design options, to creating content, to building the site and then testing of the new site – the process can take a while. Once the site is live and error free, it may be tempting to never have to touch the website again. However, you need to regularly update your site in order to keep your site in top working condition. Here are three reasons why you need to continuously update your website: For Your Visitors and Users Visitors who are coming to your site for the first time (either CLICK HERE TO READ MORE...

Can Social Media Really Help You Sell?

Writing by Shawna Wright in Social Media


Can Social Media Really Help You Sell?

It's important to remember that, for the most part, people don't turn to social media channels with the end-goal of pulling out their credit card. They go to Facebook and Twitter and Pinterest to share photos and updates, check-in with friends, post events, read news, and more. Social media is all about connecting to your online world, not buying a product. They might reach out to their social connections to ask for opinions about restaurants, movies, mechanics, and so forth, and they can certainly click on ads that capture their attention in the moment, but chances are they aren't opening CLICK HERE TO READ MORE...