Why Local SEO Works Well in Western North Carolina

At Connect Up Marketing and Web Design we are proud to serve the entire Western North Carolina region. This includes Waynesville NC (where we are located), Maggie Valley (right up the street), Sylva, Dillsboro, Bryson City, Brevard, Franklin, Cherokee, Yancy County, Madison County, Marshall, Asheville, Hendersonville, Rutherfordton, Forest City, Marion, Selby, and points beyond.

Now why did I just do that (this is Mandy, by the way). Why did I just name off ALL the towns and cities that are close to where we are located?

  1. I’m a mountain-town-lovin’-nut. (Well, yes)
  2. We only serve those specific locations (No. . .getting colder)
  3. We know that LOCAL Search Engine Optimization WORKS – for my business and for your business. (Bingo!)

So if we just talked about website design, social media marketing and graphic design – well – our chances of coming up on the first page of Google when you did a search for ” web design ” would be slim to none. But then, did you really want to spend tens of thousands hiring an expensive web design company from far, far away?

On the other hand, if you type in ” web design waynesville nc ” we have a really great chance of coming up in the search engines because we have those words written in our website somewhere (like right here, right now.)

Are you getting how Search Engine Optimization works now? So if you’re a healer, massage therapist, welder,  or caterer living and working in the Western North Carolina region we would recommend you add your location in your website somewhere, like this.

Oh – I could chat for hours about how great Search Engine Optimization (or SEO) is so great for your business, but maybe we should just chat on the phone at (828) 564-3096 or over a cup of coffee if you’re pretty close to where I’m located. Or tea. Tea is good.

If you’re thinking about looking for a reliable web designer in the Western North Carolina region drop me a line and let’s connect up.

So glad we had this talk.

Waynesville Web Design

Mandy 🙂

P.S. Yes – there is a reason for the bolded words . . .

 

Love doing website re-designs!

We’ve been working on some really fun website re-designs recently and having a blast!  Clients are reporting higher placement in the search engines as a result, and more engagement from visitors because of easy navigation and a clear call-to-action.  We are proud (blush!).

Take a look at these:

www.MothersandDaughtersinBusiness.com

www.MonetizeYourVision.com

www.SimplyHerbalNC.com

www.TheSuccessMemos.com

See more fresh website re-designs HERE.

Get a web design quote HERE.

See testimonials HERE.

Resources

Here are some resources that Mandy and Wayne recommend.  We’ve used them and we like them.  We don’t work for these companies, but we do have an affiliate relationship with some of them and we can answer questions about our experiences with them.

GoDaddy

GoDaddy.com

Odesk

We like these guys because the quality of their service providers is generally very good.  Click below to learn more.



You Need a Budget

This simple budgeting software is invaluable if you are a small business owner trying to manage your money and get ahead of the game.  We love it!

The teleconferencing program we use is great and has earned us lots of cash.  We do coaching calls, training calls, teleseminars, telesummits and webinars with this program and we would not be without it now, as it is a major business tool for us.

There are other free options out there, but beware – we tried them and found that many of our listeners – including those using Skype and Magic Jack – could not get on the calls.

Try this one instead: Instant Teleseminar.    Be sure to check out the video-tour and the 30-day free trial.

AshevilleNC.com

If you are in the Asheville, NC area, you HAVE to bookmark this site!  It has everything from cabins to website designers in the Asheville, NC region and plenty of information on events, activities and fun destinations to visit in WNC (Western North Carolina).  AshevilleNC.com also offers free business listings, so jump over there and get listed now!

New E-Books Sells 3 Per Day in First Week!

This is a pretty amazing online e-book launch success story, if we do say so ourselves. It proves that Internet miracles can and do still happen.  Oh, and maybe it hints at how wonderful and marvelous we are at what we do, but we don’t need to mention that.

The client had some very popular online nutrient charts which we had created for her over a period of several years.  She recently came to us because people had been emailing her asking for a printable e-book version of the charts.  She wanted us to turn the charts into an e-book and then create a simple sales page on her website where people could buy the book through her PayPal account for $12.95.  We were very nervous at the price – e-books don’t generally sell for that amount – but there were a lot of requests so we set the price and hit the go button.  Then we all decided to change the price to $9.95 in case $12.95 was too much.  As we were doing that, we realized that two books had already sold at $12.95 – so we quickly (very quickly) changed the price back t0 $12.95.

That was on Thursday evening.  It is now Monday evening and the client just emailed us to let us know that so far 13 books have been sold.  She hasn’t even told anyone, or sent a mailing to her mailing list, or anything at all.  She has no Facebook or Twitter account (yet – working on it) and still, in the first 4 days she has averaged a little over 3 books per day.  For the math-challenged (like Mandy) that is an immediate income of about $1,170 per month.  Here’s what she says:

“Mandy and Wayne created a beautiful 160 page e-book for me.  Then they made a sales page on my website where people could buy it.  In less than a week, with no promotion as yet, 13 books have sold at $12.95 each.  This is a very exciting start to my book launch.”  Dr. J. D. Decuypere, Nutrient Charts E-Book

Yeah, baby!

How to Promote in Hard Times

Should you promote in hard times? With all the uncertainty going on with the economy and the stock markets recently, one thing we know that helps is to boost your marketing efforts beyond what might feel comfortable. Here at Connect Up Marketing we like to call it “taking massive action”. ‘Wait a minute,’ you might say, ‘with all this uncertainty I think I’ll just economize and cut back on advertising and promotion.’
That might sound like the best way to go – sit tight and see what happens, right? But if you haven’t heard the story of the competition between Kellogg and CW Post cereal companies in the early 20th century, let me share it with you right now, because it’s relevant.
Kellogg's Marketing Ad
Both of these cereal companies were doing okay when the depression hit in late 1929. C.W. Post did what they thought was the sensible thing to do in tough economic times: they cut back on their advertising budget. Kellogg did the exact opposite; despite all indications to the contrary, they tightened their belts in other area and poured the coals on their marketing efforts and actually increased their marketing budget.

In 1933, when the economy reached the bottom and everyone else was suffering, Kellogg’s profits were up by 30%. When the dust settled and depression finally ended, Kellogg was the clear market leader and has pretty much remained so up to this day. The lesson here is if your prospect’s dollar is harder to come by, you need to fight harder for it.

With that in mind we want to make it as easy as possible for you to keep your marketing efforts up-to-date and relevant. To help you do your “Kellogg Campaign” we’re adding two hours of social media coaching to any website purchased this month.  And if you don’t need help with social media, maybe you’d like to have your logo refreshed, or perhaps a phone brainstorm as to how you can take massive action for your business.

Whatever you need help with, pertaining to getting more business and moving closer to your goals, we are just a phone call (828) 367-0488 or an email away.
We look forward to working with you!
Best, Wayne & Mandy

How to be Real on Twitter

Picture yourself in a large, crowded space. There are hundreds of people, maybe even thousands.

A few of them are looking around, somewhat bewildered. Occasionally they say something, a little tentatively, and look around to see if anyone heard them. Quite a few people are standing off to the side by themselves talking importantly, hoping someone will pay attention to them, but no one’s listening.

A few people seem to be marching around holding signs and shouting about their signs. Some are talking in small groups. Some are conversing in larger groups. Some people are gathered around listening to someone who is speaking. And some people are moving around, meeting people, engaging them in conversation and more or less “working the room”.

In these different scenarios, which one are you?

Let’s take this example and apply it to twitter. Many business owners get a twitter account and start sending out random tweets about their products or services. Maybe they follow a few people they know and a few people start following them. They don’t really engage anyone in conversation.

Others maybe find a few friends online and engage them in conversation. They are mostly interested in staying in touch with people they already know.

Some people get a twitter account because they feel they are “supposed to” but they never really say anything after the first few tweets. These are the accounts that have two or three tweets dated back to 2009 and nothing since.

Then there are the accounts that just say the same thing over and over again, hoping someone, somewhere, will click on their link and they’ll sell some product or other due to the massive numbers of repetitive tweets they send out. Often these are sent out as automatic direct messages when you follow them. I just got a message that said “Hi My name is DeeDee. Click this link to lose weight.” Imagine meeting someone and the first thing you tell them is that they need to lose weight! You wouldn’t do that in person; why would you do it online?

And of course there are those who have already have a huge offline following. These are the Ashton Kutchers of the world. Their celebrity status in life easily transfers to massive numbers of twitter followers.

But celebrities aside, there are two groups who are doing the right thing and using twitter the way it should be used. These are:

  • people who engage other people in conversation and are building a bigger and bigger circle of new connections as a result, and
  • people who have built up a huge online following simply because they are writing about topics that a lot of people are interested in reading about.

To build a large following you really need to be saying something significant and/or valuable to your readers, not just trying to sell them something. Be real. Your communications should come from just being yourself and talking about what you want to talk about. Your following doesn’t really even have to be huge, as long as you have built your credibility with the following you do have. And sure, you can mention what you do for a living occasionally, but don’t overdo it. Don’t be the kind of “salesperson” that everyone – including you if you think about it – wants to avoid.

Wayne Porter, Social Media Strategist and Monetize Your Vision Coach

The Dirt on Domains: How To Choose an Awesome Domain Name

How To Choose an Awesome Domain Name

If you got on the Internet in the early days, chances are that you managed to get a really great domain name that says what you do. It may even includes some of the key search terms your prospects might use to find your website. yay!

Today, if you’re starting a new business, you might find it difficult to find a really good domain that fits your needs, because the domains you’re considering are simply no longer available.

Here are our top 7 tips for choosing a Great domain name:

  1. When doing your search to see what domains are available, use InstantDomainSearch.com – that way your search will not be ‘recorded’.  This is important, because there are some mean people out there who will snag the domains you’re interested in and then try to sell them back to you at an inflated price.  Annoying, but avoidable.
  2. Always try to get a domain name that’s easy to remember and simple to spell.  And example of this might be connectupmarketing.com, or PayPal.com or Yahoo.com or fishingpolesalaska.com – you can find lots of examples of this.
  3. Use a name that describes what you do if at all possible.  MonetizeYourVision.com gives you an idea of what that website is about.  Other examples are treesurgeonasheville.com, waynesvilleacupuncture.com, or exteriorlightingasheville.com.  Location-specific domain names are great if you serve a specific area.
  4. Confusing domain names are a waste of time.  BofA.com is only meaningful because that institution has a bazillion dollars to spend on advertising and has been around for decades, so they are well-known. If you don’t have those kinds of resources then you need to name your business – and your domain – intuitively, so that people have a chance to guess at what you do.  www.yourchesscoach.com is a perfect example.
  5. Get a ‘dot com’ (.com) domain whenever possible.  A .com domain will inspire confidence and credibility like no other ‘dot anything’ will.
  6. Don’t use hyphens or any other special characters in your domain name – it just confuses the issue.
  7. Keep it short and sweet – again, you want people to remember your business name and your website address.

We highly recommend that before you make a decision about your new business name, get some serious advice about choosing a good business and domain name from an internet marketing professional.  It will probably be worth whatever you pay a consultant or coach to get your business name right to begin with.

Happy domain-hunting!

Mandy and Wayne

P.S. If you’ve already picked out a domain name and now you’re looking for a really great hosting company, we’ve been using the same company for ourselves and our clients for over 10 years.  click on the ad below to get really great pricing (disclosure – we have an affiliate relationship with GoDaddy – because GoDaddy has awesome support and they rock!)


$1*/ mo hosting! Get going with GoDaddy!

Burgundy is the New Dark Blue

Burgundy is the new dark blue as far as website design goes. banks tend to use dark blue a lot, and therefore since the economy meltdown dark blue is a dirty color in web-world. Just some friendly advice, and also pure opinion on my part.

Mandy Wildman

How come your website’s not making you money?

Sometimes when we tell someone we own a website design company they say “Oh, don’t look at my website,” or “I have a website but I don’t like it and I never send anyone there.”

In today’s world almost all businesses need a website, but a poor website can actually do you more harm than good. We know an attorney who designed his own website. And, sorry to say, it looks like it. This isn’t to say he’s a bad attorney. He just isn’t a good web designer.

Try this: go to your website and take a look at it as if you weren’t familiar with your business and see what the site is telling your visitors about you.

  • Does it make your business look professional?
  • Does it instill confidence, or does it make you cringe?
  • Does it have bad grammar, misspelled words and broken links?
  • Is it hard to navigate?
  • Does it tell people exactly what they should do to take advantage of what you have to offer?

The first question about your website should be “What do I want this site to accomplish?”

  • Do you want visitors to order something from your site? Then make it super easy to order.
  • Do you want them to visit your store? Give them a map and give them a reason why they should come.
  • Do you want to build your mailing list? Give them a free gift when they sign up.

Mandy and I don’t work on our own cars. We wouldn’t try to represent ourselves in a court of law. We’re not roofers or plumbers or tailors (well, okay, Mandy loves to sew in her alleged ‘spare time’).

My point is that we know people who do these jobs for a living and are much better at it than we are. They have the right tools and know how to use them. It would take me several hours to do what a professional mechanic can do in much less time. It is very worth it for us to focus on what we do and let other people do what they do best.

If you’re not sure what effect your website is having on your visitors give us a call or drop us a line and we’ll set up a free 20 minute brainstorming session to address any issues and answer any questions you have. Let’s get you PROUD of your website and give your visitors a pleasantly memorable experience, okay?

Wayne Porter