Tips for Writer’s Block | 5 Ways to Coax Creativity!

.So there you sit — staring at a glowing screen, a blank word document stealing the oxygen out of the room. You have just a thousand more words before the end of the day and it’s already an hour to closing time. Maybe the week got away from you or the ideas just haven’t leapt to the page as usual. Whatever the case, writer’s block is something that can be as enigmatic as it is obvious to cure! Here are a five tips for writer’s block!

Smashing Your Writer’s Block | Five Tips for Writer’s Block

Whether you’re in marketing, journalism, or you just write for fun, we all have those moments (or maybe many excruciating series of moments) when capturing the right words and ideas is as easy as holding the smoke in your hands. It doesn’t help when there are a series of other assignments ready to present a similar struggle. Writer’s block is never fun…Or maybe it is?

Here’s my first technique for eliminating writer’s block:

1. Indulge in Nonsense

Sure, you’re not going to want this to transfer into the ultimate execution of your work. However, sometimes it helps to simply write the first thing that comes to mind. It may not (and will likely not) be related to the serious topic you’ve been tasked to cover, but it may unfurl your subconscious mind enough to expose your real ideas.

writer's block

Words are hard, but nonsense is simple!

Whether it’s just a matter of clearing away unwanted mental baggage or generating a false sense of accomplishment, writing nonsense is something that can be a quick solution to shifting your thoughts into the right gear. While I can see this working for the more nebulously minded of us, maybe you’re the type of person who just goes deeper into the self-doubt writer’s block produces.

2. Get Up and Move

Sometimes it just takes a bit of physical movement to redistribute the blood and really get those mental facilities up and running. If you have the ability, go for a brief walk, run, or do some light cardiovascular exercise to convince your body that things are different now and the masterpiece can ensue.

writer's block

Believe me, staring forcefully into your computer monitor until words appear is rarely the best way to produce something you’ll be happy with. You may want to just get a little sunlight and breathe deeply into the void of existence before sitting down to write your problematic piece of work. Hopefully, that’s enough to let you reach the fruit of your creativity-orchard, but if not you may need a more directed approach. Getting up and moving is one of the most important tips for writer’s block, as it also will help with your overall wellness.

3. Find an Uncanny Influence

If you’re inspired by music, find something you’ve never heard before. Into the visual arts? Go glimpse interesting imagery just until the point where your mind’s eye is ready to see those words hitting the page! The point is this — find something to help you break out of your regular thought-patterns and stir up new ideas. Writer’s block may feel like you’re turning to stone at the bottom of the ocean, but if it never left anyone then humanity would have exhausted just about every great thought available. So far so good!

writer's block

Waste time with the Magic iPod at your own risk…

While it’s important not to waste time being a whimsical dandy just floating about, finding things you wouldn’t normally draw inspiration from can inform what you’d like to create, in addition to what you’ll want to avoid. The answers are out there, regardless of how elusive they are at this very moment. More or less, just take to mediums which aren’t your usual cup of tea and swallow them whole or smash the mug entirely — whichever is a more applicable metaphor.

4. What Would You Want to Read?

So up until this point, my advice has probably been pretty subjective. Perhaps you’re looking for that actionable, completely obvious way to destroy your writer’s block the “just say it already” takeaway point. And really that’s just it! Write exactly what it is you’d like to read yourself. Some people take entirely boring subjects, and through some alchemical wizardry, produce a relatively engaging piece because they’re genuinely interested in the content.

writer's block

You are your most critical audience member, and simultaneously the performer!

This can also translate to the fact that sometimes you’ll need a jump start on figuring out the exact content you’ll be writing. For this, I’d essentially recommend finding similar pieces and writing your own take on the matter, taking care not to lift anything directly. Plagiarism is still alive and well in our digital age! Think about who your ideal reader is and write for them. The worst case scenario is that you write too narrowly, but that’s fine if it gets the job done!

5. Time is Your Friend!

Sometimes you can use your deadlines to leverage your creative mind! I know what you’re thinking “that’s what has gotten us here in the first place.” However, maybe setting small incremental goals is just what you need to break down a larger task at hand. Give yourself an hour to get the topic or focus of your piece. Use the next hour to develop the outline. Before you know it, you’re adding that final punctuation mark and punching out for the day! (Side note: Time is an illusion of consciousness designed to present order in a relatively chaotic universe.)

writer's block

The most difficult part for many with writer’s block is taking that first step into the unknown. You know, that swirling semantic tornado of uncertainty devouring the trailer parks and open prairies of your mind until inspiration is pulled from the rubble! Hopefully, this blog gave you your mental vacation needed to erupt with that next great piece of content! If not, you’re on your own — but I’m glad I temporarily convinced you otherwise! I hope you enjoyed these tips for writer’s block!

White Hat vs Black Hat SEO: Which Will You Wear?

Other than that they make for great Halloween costumes (see pictures below) what’s the difference between these two SEO methods? Simply put, one is acceptable, and the other isn’t. Judging by the colors’ names, you can probably guess which is which. However, there’s much more to it than that! Let’s take a look at some major differences when it comes to white hat vs black hat SEO.

white hat vs black hat seo 2

White Hat vs Black Hat SEO

The difference between white hat vs black hat SEO lies in the techniques used when trying to improve a website’s search engine rankings. SEO techniques can broadly be classified into two categories: techniques that search engines approve of, and techniques that search engines do not. To start, let’s look at the first of these two: white hat SEO.

White Hat SEO

White hat SEO is the method that all successful marketers strive to implement. It involves the use of techniques that are not contrary to Google’s guidelines. White hat SEO is a long-term investment and, ideally, its results will last a long time. Here are some of the main white hat SEO techniques:

Quality Content

Creating quality content is arguably the most important white hat SEO method, and “quality” is the key word here. Creating valuable content is important for SEO purposes because it shows search engines that your site is worthwhile. Additionally, quality content is far more likely to be shared and linked to. This type of content is easy to read, relevant to your niche, grammatically correct, and keyword rich.

Effective Keyword Research

In order to create quality content, it’s extremely beneficial to research keywords that are relevant to your site. By using keyword research tools, you can weed out the most effective words and phrases that people may use to find your site. Be cautious, though, as using too many keywords could lead to keyword stuffing, which we’ll talk about later.

Relevant Backlinks

Good backlinks are important because they’re essentially a vote of confidence for your site. They tell Google that you have quality content and that other websites vouch for your site. However, when it comes to backlinks, quality always comes before quantity. It’s not about how many backlinks your site has, but how many relevant backlinks it has.

Internal Linking

Linking to other pages within your own website makes it easier for search engines to navigate your site, as long as you don’t overdo it. Search Engine Journal recommends “two or three links to deep-seeded pages within your site.”

Black Hat SEO

Black hat SEO refers to the use of rule-breaking SEO techniques to earn higher rankings. While these strategies may work at first, it’s only for a short period of time. At the end of the day, they’ll probably only hurt your search rankings rather than help them. Here are some common black hat SEO strategies:

Keyword Stuffing

Using keywords properly in your content is very helpful, but keyword stuffing is a big no-no. It occurs when a webpage is jam-packed with keywords in the meta tags or content. Similarly, another black hat SEO technique is using unrelated, well-performing keywords to bait search engines. This looks extremely unnatural, which is a big red flag for search engines.

Hidden Text

We know that using certain words can benefit search rankings. So, some sneaky webmasters have tried to get around this by making the text color of certain words match the background of the site or setting the font size to zero. However, Google quickly caught on to this trick.

Cloaking

Cloaking involves presenting users and the search engine spiders with completely different content. This is done by delivering content based on IP addresses. Like most black hat SEO tactics, cloaking may have worked in the past, but it doesn’t anymore.

Link Farms

A link farm is a group of websites that all link to one another. The idea here was that it was better to have link quantity over link quality, but Google quickly realized that people using link farms were trying to cheat because of how unnatural it looked.

Paid Links

Similarly, purchasing links is another black hat SEO strategy. As its name suggests, it’s the practice of buying links for the sole purpose of having a higher number of links. Surprisingly, people still try to do this, but most paid links are bad quality and will hurt your search rankings.

What do you think about white hat vs black hat SEO? Share your thoughts in the comments section below!

Think your SEO strategy is up to par? Come work with us and show us what you’ve got!

Working at Track5Media | Unexpected Outcomes

I’ve been working as a digital marketing intern at Track5Media for almost a year now. It’s been quite a ride, to say the least. While I knew that I’d walk away from this internship with useful marketing knowledge, there are some results I wasn’t anticipating. I’m sure other employees will agree, there are quite a few unexpected outcomes of working at Track5Media…

Unexpected Outcomes of Working at Track5Media

1. A newfound appreciation for truck drivers

I know some of you may be thinking, “what do truck drivers and Track5Media have in common?” Well, considering that one of our websites is a trucking job board, the two go hand in hand! I’ll admit, before I started working at Track5Media, I hated having to share the road with big rigs. I thought they were inconsiderate drivers who thought they were better than everyone else on the road. However, after working with AllTruckJobs.com and its podcast BigRigBanter, I have a lot more respect for truck drivers. From writing trucking blogs to listening to interviews we’ve done with truckers, I’ve gained all sorts of exposure to the trucking industry. Working at Track5 definitely disproves the misconceptions and stereotypes you hear about truck drivers!

2. Wanderlust from working on our travel job boards

Not only does Track5Media operate a trucking job board, but we also run several job boards for traveling healthcare providers, like travel nurses and doctors. Needless to say, working on these websites gives some of us serious wanderlust. Considering the fact that the furthest west I’ve been is Pittsburgh, I’m really itching to travel the country after seeing all the attractions that different states have to offer.

working at track5media

3. Weight gain

I’m half kidding about this one, but it’s hard to resist the temptation to snack all day when our break room is full of yummy treats. Every month or two, Aarin, our executive administrator, goes on a Costco trip and picks up all sorts of snacks for the office: Jimmy Dean breakfast sandwiches, chips, yogurt, popcorn…the list goes on. I’ll admit, I’m tempted to grab a snack every time I walk through the break room to use the bathroom.

4. An addiction to LaCroix

I’m sure you’ve heard of LaCroix: that fancy, flavored sparkling water that’s all the rage right now. The fridge is usually stocked with it after our Costco run, but we go through a case of it in the blink of an eye. Personally, I’m convinced that there’s some sort of additive in LaCroix that makes it addicting. When I first tried it, I took one sip, nearly gagged, and dumped the rest of it down the drain. Then, I started craving it and began drinking at least one can a day, and I have friends that have had similar experiences. Weird, right?

5. Becoming a bookworm

A lot of the employees at Track5 are readers, and we’re always chatting about our latest reads. Thanks to coworkers, I’ve read books that I never would have chosen to read otherwise, and I loved them! Even better, we recently started a Track5Media Library! We built a few bookshelves, and everyone contributed some of their favorite books for others to read. It’s a “take a book, leave a book” type of thing!

working at track5media

6. Making new friends

The awesome people are one of the best things about working at Track5Media. Everyone is very close-knit, but we have no problem making new employees or visitors feel right at home. Also, we have plenty of chances to get to know each other and hang out outside of the office through fun company events and outings. This year, we’ve gone to happy hours, Hersheypark, The Works in Wyomissing, and more! We also have occasional in-office lunches and parties where we all take a break from working, sit around a big table, eat food, and chat.

There you have it! While there are some unexpected benefits of working at Track5Media, I’m sure most of us wouldn’t have it any other way!

Interested in joining the team? We’re hiring! Check out our open positions.

7 Link Building Mistakes Every Marketer Should Know

Ah, link building. It’s one of the most common SEO techniques out there, but it’s also one of the most challenging. No matter how experienced a digital marketer you are, link building is sort of a crapshoot – you never really know what’s going to happen. Needless to say, there are quite a few link building mistakes that anyone can make, and these mistakes could yield some negative consequences.

7 Link Building Mistakes Every Marketer Should Know

link building mistakes

1. Buying links

We hope you’re smart enough to know that buying links is a BIG no-no in the SEO world. However, there are still some people out there that think they can take the easy way out by buying or selling links. It seems too good to be true, right? Well, it is. Paid links can seriously hurt your ranking in search engine results. Search engine algorithms, especially Google’s, are becoming smarter and smarter. So, there’s a high chance that they will catch and penalize any link buyers or sellers out there. Avoid this mistake at all costs!

2. Getting “no-follow” links

Building no-follow links is nothing more than a waste of time since Google ignores any link with the nofollow tag. These links do not count toward a page’s authority, nor their placement in the search results. Use tools like Moz or SEMrush to check your links, and stay away from nofollow links whenever possible!

3. Only building links to your site’s homepage

This one’s a popular link building mistake for beginners. While it may seem like a good idea to build backlinks exclusively to your site’s homepage, it’s not. Google will see this as artificial or spammy, and your search rankings could suffer. It’s important to keep other pages in mind while link building, like links to your site’s blog. This will help you to rank higher in the search results for pages other than your homepage.

link building mistakes 2

4. Building links too quickly

There’s no rule for how many links you should build in a day, but search engines will notice if you seem to be getting backlinks unnaturally quickly. Link building is not a process that should be rushed; slow and steady wins the race! If you build, say, a thousand links to your site in one day, prepare to be penalized. Search engines will notice this, and they may even ban your website from being indexed as a result.

5. Getting backlinks from irrelevant sites

Link builders should strive to build backlinks for relevant sites only, or, sites within their niche. In other words, if you have a site that sells pet supplies, getting links from a marketing website isn’t going to do you any good, even if the site has a high domain authority (DA). Before trying to build a link, make sure that the site is in a similar niche as yours.

6. Linking to a site with a bad reputation

Linking to spam or duplicate content sites is one of the worst link building mistakes you can make. Building a link to a site with a bad reputation will tell Google that you endorse that site. As a result, you will be penalized. Be sure to thoroughly check the site and their reputation before you link to them!

7. Getting site-wide links

It’s a good idea to stay away from site-wide links or links that come from the header or footer section of a website. While this used to be an effective link building strategy, it isn’t anymore. Google started noticing these types of links and began penalizing the websites.

Can you think of any other link building mistakes that marketers should avoid? Let us know in the comments section below!

Track5Media is hiring! Take a look at our open positions and apply today!

What’s the Difference? Understanding Organic VS. Paid Searches

What will the weather be like next week? When is mothers day? How do you tie a tie? Almost all of us will enter small simple questions such as these into… Google! In fact, Google has roughly 3.5 billion searches per day. As so many people traffic one search engine for various inquiries on a daily basis, businesses, products, and services all want to rank as high as possible on Google’s Search Engine Results Pages (SERP). However, in a widely competitive online market, ranking well, especially for commonly searched topics, can be a challenge. So, what is the difference between organic vs. paid searches? Keep reading to learn more about these two traffic-acquiring methods.

Organic VS. Paid Searches

Understanding Organic VS. Paid Searches

When determining how your business wants to allocate its marketing funds, understanding the difference between organic vs. paid searches is critical. The main two methods for acquiring traffic for inbound marketing is organic vs. paid searches. The two main methods that are used for acquiring this traffic is through Search Engine Optimization (SEO) or Search Engine Marketing (SEM)

Organic Searches

When you type an inquiry into Google there will commonly be two or three featured ad links. Below these ad links, the organic searches will appear. These searches are appearing based purely off of the content of their page. Organic search focuses on the implementation of SEO to rank well on the SERP. So, the results that appear towards the top of the page, Google ranks as high-quality content. When users find and click on your link, it creates organic, unpaid, traffic.

Organic searches, however, do not provide immediate results. After spiders crawl and index websites, the information is stored in large databases, and will only be used to answer matching inquiries. However, 57% of B2B marketers say that SEO has the biggest impact on lead generation! We depend on Google on a daily basis. Likely our dependence on this search engine will not slow down. Therefore, understanding the benefits of SEO is a smart, cost-free, efficient way to increase traffic.

Paid Searches

Next, we’ll dive into paid searches! Paid search utilizes SEM (Search Engine Marketing). This type of marketing is a form of online marketing that exposes and promotes a businesses online platform in the SERP through paid advertising. Paid searches appear at the top of the search results, even above organic results. These results are labeled as an “Ad” however; many people still click these links. These links receive high amounts of traffic because they relate to the search inquiry, and therefore do not feel like a blunt advertisement. Therefore, paid ads have grown in popularity in recent years. Instead of waiting for your companies SEO to build up over time, businesses can pay to be featured at the top of a search results page.

Today, Google AdWords is the most used pay-per-click advertising program. Even crazier, Google AdWords launched in 2000 is only 18 years old, and was created by college dropout Scott Banister!

Organic VS. Paid Searches: Is One Better Than The Other?

After quickly learning about organic and paid searches, you may be asking the question, “Which is better?” The answer…neither! Depending on the current need of your company, one method may be better than the other. Paid searches provide fast results for a cost, while organic searches provide cost-free traffic. Understand the current needs of both your company and team, and decide what traffic acquiring method would be best!

There you have it! Do you have a good understanding of organic vs. paid searches? Comment your thoughts below!

Debunking 5 Common Blogging Myths!

In the digital marketing world, we write A LOT of blogs. In fact, here at Track5Media, you could probably argue that we spend the majority of our time each week on blogs. There’s a lot more to blogging than the average person may realize, so we thought it’d be a good idea to debunk some of the most common blogging myths that we’ve heard over the years. Keep reading!

Debunking 5 Common Blogging Myths

blogging myths

1. Blogging is easy!

I hear this all the time. When I tell somebody that I write blogs at work, they usually assume that it’s a piece of cake. Not quite. There’s much more to blogging than just writing a short article. As a matter of fact, simply coming up with a topic or title is hard enough. There’s a ton of topic generation and keyword research that goes behind choosing a blog topic. So, no, we can’t just write about “anything.” Not only is writing a blog tricky, but it’s difficult to come up with new and unique ways to promote the content. If blogging was easy, everyone would be doing it!

2. If you can’t write, you can’t blog.

“I would like to try blogging, but I’m not much of a writer…” Have you heard this before? Many people assume that only skilled writers can produce worthwhile blog content, but this is not the case. For example, there are some blogs that include little to no writing at all! Some bloggers tell their stories with pictures, videos, or drawings. Additionally, most bloggers grow and develop over time. It’s not like every blogger started out as an avid writer or an author!

On the other hand, not all good writers will be good bloggers! Blog writing has its own style and techniques, and even the most advanced writers can struggle to write a blog!

3. “If you build it, they will come.”

Writing a blog post itself is only a fraction of the blogging process. One of the most common blogging myths is that once you have a blog in place with a few posts, you’ll gain traffic. In reality, that’s when your work really starts. Like we said above, there are a whole bunch of content promotion and distribution strategies that come after writing that initial blog post. But it doesn’t end there! In marketing, we have to learn a lot about interpreting our blogs’ analytics, which is a monster in and of itself.

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4. Blogging is just a fad.

Many people assume that blogging is simply a fad that will phase out over time, like disco music or bell-bottom jeans. Actually, blogging has been around for years, and it has a ton to do with a business’s success. Similarly, some argue that blogging is dead or dying because there is just too much content online, and it’s growing much faster than people can actually consume it. However, this doesn’t necessarily mean that blogging is “dead.” It may mean that there’s a smaller number of successful blogs, but there are still plenty of people to consume and enjoy the content.

5. People only read listicles.

Another popular blogging myth is that the only type of blog that performs well is listicles. What’s a listicle? Well, this blog is one. It’s a piece of content that’s presented in the form of a list. Think BuzzFeed articles, like “10 Crazy Things You Secretly Do in Private” or something like that. While this type of blog is popular and easy to read, it’s not the only show in town. Blogs can take the form of interviews, podcasts, editorials…you name it!

Alright bloggers, what are some other blogging myths that you’ve heard floating around? Share them with us in the comments below!

Track5Media is hiring! Browse open positions here!

Top 8 Things Only Marketers Understand

Digital marketing is not for the faint of heart. When you’re not busy busting your butt trying to promote your brands and carefully craft campaigns, you’re trying to explain to people what you actually do for a living. While it may be hard for most people to actually understand what you do, those who do understand can totally relate. So, without further ado, here are eight things only marketers understand!

8 Things Only Marketers Understand

things only marketers understand

1. The importance of content

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“Oh, so you write blogs for a living?” I get asked this one all the time. My answer is usually, “Not quite.” Yes, us digital marketers do write a ton of blogs, but there’s a reason for it! We’re not just writing five blogs a week for fun. Creating fresh, engaging content is one of the most important aspects of digital marketing.

2. When said content doesn’t get engagement

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So you’ve just spent three hours slaving away over a blog post. You’ve done all the keyword and topic research imaginable, and you’re confident that this could be the best blog you’ve ever written. You share the blog on your brand’s social media page and…nothing. What’s worse, the stolen meme you shared two days prior got dozens of likes and shares. It happens to the best of us. All you can really do is shake it off and get back at it.

3. When your social media campaign is a total flop

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Not much is worse than spending months brainstorming, planning, and executing a social media campaign only for it to be unsuccessful. It feels like all of the hard work you did was for nothing! While this may be a total buzzkill, all marketers know that failed campaigns teach valuable lessons. In fact, they’re almost beneficial, since they allow you to analyze what went wrong so you’re better prepared for the next one!

4. You’re really good at trivia

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I mean, what can you expect from someone who spends their whole day online? Whether it’s doing research for a blog post or taking a look at competitors, us marketers stumble across loads of facts and bits of seemingly useless information on a daily basis. That said, we’re definitely the most valued members of any bar trivia team.

5. When Google changes their search algorithms…again

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This may be one of the most frustrating things only marketers understand. It’s often difficult to stay up to date on big industry game-changers. Just when you think you’ve got your SEO plan down to a T, Google changes everything. While this may make you want to hurl a coffee mug at the wall, it’s important to stay alert! Make sure your marketing plan is flexible so you’ll have some room for change.

6. Spelling mistakes make your whole body cringe

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Spelling mistakes may seem like nothing more than a minor inconvenience for some people, but not for digital marketers! Bad grammar or spelling can make leads or clients question your credibility. Are you really going to trust a company that uses the wrong form of “your” in an email marketing campaign? Probably not.

7. You’re tired of seeing the same stock images everywhere

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The website Track5Media uses for stock photos has millions of images, but we still see the same ones pop up over and over again. Ah, the photo of a young nurse and her elderly patient giving the camera a “thumbs up,” we meet again.

8. Trying to understand the monster that is SEO

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If you work in a marketing job, you know how crucial SEO is for a business, and there’s a lot to it. While we’d like to think that we have a good grasp on SEO, sometimes we end up ranking for keywords other than what we optimized for, or our sites receive random, unexplainable spikes of traffic. At the end of the day, as much as you can study analytics and use SEO tools, some things just don’t have an explanation.

That’s a wrap! What would you add to this list of things only marketers understand? Let us know in the comments below!

Why Marketing With Graphic Design Can Improve Your Business

Graphic design is becoming an increasingly important component of online marketing. Design is so much more than pasting a colorful picture onto a piece of paper or using an interesting font on your website. Graphic design is a way in which we can communicate and problem-solve through the use of photography and illustration. Graphic design is a key way to connect with users or customers and sway their decision-making process. The supplementary use of imagery and color is often times a more appealing form of communication than just using written word. Hence, why so many people are interested in nailing this aspect of the marketing mix! So, how exactly does graphic design improve your online marketing? Here are four great ways that marketing with graphic design can help grow and advance your business.

marketing with graphic design

4 Ways Graphic Design Can Improve Your Marketing

1. Improves Your First Impression

Believe it or not, you have less time to make a good impression online than you do in person. This means you have just seconds to make a good impression on someone visiting your site. If your website lacks visual appeal or attraction, chances are you will lose any potential business from said viewer. Potential customers visiting your site should be able to understand what your company does, how they can help, and why they should choose to conduct business with you. Remember, you only have seconds to do this. Thus, marketing with graphic design is an incredibly important and useful tool that can help to sway their decision in your favor.

Builds Trust

In today’s digital era, online trust is becoming increasingly important in the wake of online scamming. When people visit and browse your company’s webpage, you want them to feel they can trust your site. Design, believe it or not, plays a larger role in online trust than you might think. A small study asked users to record whether they trusted certain websites they visited, and if not, why. When evaluating why there was distrust towards certain websites, 94 percent of those reasons related to design problems. This means you may be utilizing the concept of graphic design, but doing so in a counterproductive way. Some of the top reasons that viewers did not trust a website were due to a boring web design, pop-up ads, slow load times, too much text, and more. Invest time in developing a site that is user-friendly and builds trust. When viewers feel they can trust your site they will likely continue to return.

Improves Your Social Media Presence

It’s no surprise that engaging graphic design can have a major impact on your social media platforms. How you utilize design will also impact how people remember your brand. In the age of scrolling, eye-catching visuals are becoming increasingly important. Creating current and well-designed visuals will help attract new followers, likes, comments, shares, and overall engagement.

Improves Your CTA’s

As we’ve mentioned before, graphic design is a great way to communicate and engage with your audience. However, when users are visiting your webpage the end goal is almost always engagement. Whether it’s liking, commenting, sharing, or clicking on a link it all helps to increase the social participation around your brand. The use of graphic design only helps to further improve your CTA’s (call to action) Attention grabbing CTA’s will help to guide users visiting your site into potential paying customers.

What do you think are some additional benefits of pairing marketing with graphic design? Let us know is the comments below!

SEO Tactics for Small Businesses | Some Basic Tips!

Each year there are more SEO tactics to become aware of for the benefit of your business. When you’re working to ensure your company’s websites are performing the best they can, it all comes down to staying ahead of the curve. No matter what your product or service may be, there are SEO tactics for small businesses that you’ll want to stay aware of and implement. It’s not just the trends you have to consider, but how these tactics can stay sustainable throughout the year. Today we’ll talk about some of the basic SEO considerations to make if you want your small business to flourish:


SEO Tactics for Small Businesses | Basic Tips:

Unless you’ve been totally avoiding the internet and all the marketing required to make your small business a success, it’s no secret that mobile SEO is huge. Along with a greater volume of searches, mobile devices are changing the approach consumers take when finding information on a product or service. This means that SEO tactics for small businesses absolutely need to account for this shift. Mainly there are 3 main things you’ll want to consider:

  • Voice Search
  • Featured Snippets
  • Local Search

Optimizing your small business’s site for each of these aspects of mobile search can have some huge results. That’s why we’ll break down each of these critical SEO tactics for small businesses.

Voice Search is Here to Stay

Whether it’s through a smartphone, home assistant, or even a desktop more people are doing voice searches than ever before. Last year in 2017, 33 million voice search devices were used by 40 percent of adults each day. Compared to its launch in 2008, Google’s voice search received 35 times more search queries in 2016. Since voice assistants have been added to more phones, TVs, and dedicated devices than ever, SEO is following suit.

SEO tactics for small businesses

In terms of SEO tactics for small businesses, you’ll always want to answer specific questions via ‘first-page content,’ and by this I mean content that provides the absolute best and most concise answer. This is what will ultimately get you popping up on people’s mobile devices which leads to our next point…

Featured Snippets are Best

If you’re optimizing for voice search at all, that means really nailing those featured snippets. When people are searching for a product or service your small business provides, they’re likely looking for something very specific. Doing some keyword research into what phrases your customers are actually using allows you to earn these featured snippets with greater accuracy. Then, not only will your site be easier to find on mobile devices, but will also populate on full desktop pages better.

Local SEO is EVERYTHING

If you’re a small business then you already realize the importance of optimizing your website for local searches. When you consider both voice search and rich or featured snippets, local search is where these things really make sense. Most of the time, people are going to ask for products and services “near me” or “in my area.” Writing content featuring keywords with your city or location is one way to do this in addition to having a Google My Business profile. This way people can instantly find your store hours, directions, and a phone number without doing an additional search or even clicking onto your website itself!

Overall, SEO tactics for small businesses include many other more nuanced factors, however, these are some of the most common and effective ways to increase your site’s reach and rank. Combining voice search, featured snippets, and local SEO ensures you’re getting the best return on investment for any marketing and content writing efforts you’re undertaking.

What are some ways your small business optimizes itself for Google and other search engines? Let us know in the comments below!

Digital Marketing Specialist | A Day in the Life

Here at Track5Media, LLC, we have three full-time digital marketing specialists. Connor starts his day with some sun salutations and a vegan ice bath, Troy rolls out of bed and takes his puppy outside, and Lenay makes herself some coffee and picks out an outfit for the day. Then, these three head to the office and prepare for another exciting day at Track5Media. Now, you may be asking, what do these digital marketers do during the course of a day? Well, I’m here to offer you an inside look at the daily tasks of a digital marketing specialist, so keep reading!

A Day in the Life of a Digital Marketing Specialist

While all of our digital marketing specialists at Track5Media have slightly different roles, here are a few duties that are relatively consistent between the three of them.

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Monitoring Everything

Some of us at Track5Media use Google Analytics to check for traffic and performance data on our sites. Using the found data, we can then look for opportunities to increase brand engagement and conversions.

In addition, monitoring social media channels is a priority for a digital marketing specialist. Track5Media has six different brands, each with their own Facebook and Twitter pages. Our digital marketing specialists are responsible for observing all activity on these social media channels. In addition, they engage with followers and respond appropriately to any comments or questions.

Aside from the company and our brands, we also keep an eye on our competitors. Competitor research is important in digital marketing. It allows us to see our competitors’ strategies and how the public is responding to their content. If a competitor is doing something that we are not and it’s working for them, chances are, we’ll definitely consider trying it.

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Content Creation

Digital marketing specialists create all kinds of different content to meet goals and increase brand awareness. Here are a few different types of content that we create at Track5Media:

  • Blogs. Each of our brands (and our company page) has its own blog. Our digital marketing specialists write regular blog posts for each page. For each post, they utilize proper keywords and SEO practices to create the best possible, optimized content.
  • Social media updates. Each Monday, our digital marketing specialists and intern plan and schedule Facebook and Twitter posts for each of our brands using HootSuite.
  • Graphics. Connor is our go-to guy for this one, but we at Track5 create lots of different videos, images, and infographics to support our content.

Campaign Management

One of the primary responsibilities of a digital marketing specialist is to manage different marketing campaigns from start to finish. As a team, our marketing department brainstorms different approaches for campaigns and promotions. We’re always thinking of new ways to promote content, events, and engage our audience. For campaign management, planning and communication are essential, so we have lots of meetings to collaborate and plan with each other. We task out who’s going to be in charge of what aspect of the campaign and monitor the campaign’s success while it’s happening. Finally, one of the most important parts of campaign measurement is evaluating its effectiveness when it’s finished. What worked for us? What didn’t work? By assessing the campaign’s effectiveness, digital marketers can develop their strategies even more.

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Website Management

This is one of the more tricky tasks of a digital marketing specialist. Aside from making sure that our websites have awesome content, we must make sure that they are functional and maximized for SEO, with the help of our development team. Aside from using sites like SEMrush and Moz for keyword research and analytics, we also use a tool called Screaming Frog SEO Spider to crawl our sites. The crawler analyzes each of our websites’ pages to ensure that they’re optimized for SEO and fetches key onsite elements.

While this list certainly isn’t exhaustive, it’s a pretty good overview of some of the major tasks of a digital marketing specialist. We’re currently looking for summer and fall intern marketing positions at the moment, so check out our open jobs here!