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Marketing

Thus far, the year 2020 has been turbulent. Between protests and pandemics, it seems unlikely the world will ever return to the way it was. This includes the way we do business. 

As social distancing protocols are forcing us to close our physical doors, it’s opening doors of opportunity. Digital marketing has long been a part of our world, but now it’s becoming a staple of the way we do business. 

As the year 2021 approaches, you need to start thinking about the best ways to marketing and boost your kratom brand. We’re here to offer some suggestions. Keep reading for our top tips on how to market your different kratom products.

1. Website Optimization

First, let’s talk about designing a website. Your website needs to be both highly functional and aesthetically appealing to consumers. If your website falls short of consumer expectations, they’ll leave your site for someone else’s.

Your website must:

  • Load quickly
  • Be optimized for mobile devices
  • Use multiple forms of media
  • Be easy to navigate

When thinking about the layout of your website, keep it simple. Users shouldn’t have trouble finding what they’re looking for, whether it’s a product page, contact page, or blog articles.

2. SEO

There are over 30 million small businesses in America and most of them have a website. Boosting your kratom brand organically means perfecting your search engine optimization. SEO is the algorithm search engines like Bing and Google use to find relevant information based on keyword searches. 

For example, if people in your area were to search for “kratom suppliers near me,” your SEO will dictate how quickly and easily they find your store. It also applies to people looking for information (that could be found in your blog).

To boost your SEO, follow these basic principles:

  • Create a blog full of relevant articles
  • Use short-tail and long-tail keywords
  • If applicable, focus on local keywords
  • Use internal and external links
  • Use media embedded with metadata (videos, photos, images, infographics, headers, titles, etc.)
  • Get backlinks from credible websites

SEO can be a tricky field to navigate for new business owners or those new to managing their online presence. Check out our SEO services for more assistance.

3. Organic Social Media Marketing 

Did you know over 70% of Americans have a social media account? What better place to reach the vast majority of your target audience? Best of all, you can do a lot of it for free.

Organic marketing with social media can be accomplished by posting clever and engaging content that speaks to your followers or intended followers. On Facebook, you need to get your current friends and followers to share, comment, and like your posts to increase your exposure. On Instagram, it’s all about using the right tags and hashtags.

The key is to keep followers engaged and continuously drive traffic back to your website and product pages.

4. Paid Social Media Marketing

Another digital marketing strategy uses paid advertising on various social media platforms. While many new business owners tend to shy aware from anything with the word “paid” in front of it, paid social media marketing can be incredibly effective.

For example, through Facebook’s Ad Center, you can choose how much money you want to spend per day and dictate what demographic of people are being targeted by your ads. You can discriminate between age, gender, location, and more.

Finally, paid social media advertising gives you valuable feedback based on the performance of your ads. It will tell you the level of engagement each ad receives, such as link clicks, likes, comments, shares, profile follows, etc. This will help you fine-tune your advertisements to improve engagement.

5. Influencer Marketing

Becoming popular on social media isn’t easy, especially as a retail business. To gain access to a larger audience, you may want to consider influencer marketing. Influencer marketing allows you to pay popular influencers (with numerous, trusting followers) to promote your kratom brand for you.

There are several options here:

  • Trade products for shout-outs
  • Pay per post
  • Pay for monthly commitments (posts/stories/mentions/etc.)

Influencer marketing is an affiliation that can be a one-time or recurring agreement. 

6. Pay Per Click Marketing 

Like your social media profile, your online presence isn’t going to start off strong. While getting established or looking to expand your audience, it might be wise is to invest in pay per click marketing. PPC marketing allows you to post your ads on other websites.

In PPC advertising, you pay the host site an agreed-upon amount every time your ad gets clicked on by their users. You can also use PPC marketing on search engine platforms. Your links will come up at the top of the results pages and you’ll pay for each click.

7. Email Marketing

Email marketing is an effective digital marketing strategy because it caters to consumers who have already shown interest in your kratom brand. You can build an email list by offering discounts to subscribers. You can offer it via sales, landing page ads, social media posts, etc.

Then, design an email campaign designed to communicate with customers and provide them with valuable content. You should be sending relevant articles, how-tos, promotions, exclusive offers, etc. Your content needs to keep them invested in your emails.

Use your emails to subtly lead people back to your product pages to generate more sales.

8. Retargeting Advertising

Finally, consider investing in retargeting advertising. While there’s no specific evidence, it’s commonly said that a consumer needs to see an ad roughly seven times before they’re convinced to convert to a customer. Retargeting ads serve to remind people of what you have to offer after they’ve left your website.

When they come to your page, the cookies on your website attach themselves to their internet browser. When they leave your site, those cookies follow them around, popping up ads for your kratom brand everywhere they go. 

Looking to Boost Your Kratom Brand?

If you want to make the rest of the year 2020 count and secure the success of your business for 2021, we want to help. Check out the list of our services to see how we can boost your kratom brand. 

For more information, be sure to take a look at some of our other articles. And, as always, feel free to contact us with any questions.

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Advertising, Marketing

If you run a CBD company, you got in on the business at the right time.

The CBD industry is poised to explode in America. With the country-wide legalization of hemp in the 2018 Farm Bill, loads of entrepreneurs have already begun to dip their toes in the extremely profitable world of CBD products.

Touted as some kind of wonder drug, CBD appears to work wonders on various medical conditions, both physical and mental. Unfortunately, CBD still suffers from a reputational association with its psychoactive counterpart, THC. 

For that reason, the need for CBD advertising has never been greater. Today, we’re going to discuss how to market CBD products online so you can take your CBD business to the next level.

Products that help with anxiety, depression, inflammation, and even epilepsy shouldn’t make people skeptical. Fortunately, we believe that better CBD advertising can change that. Here’s how to do it.

First Of All, What Is CBD?

If you’re looking at getting into the CBD industry, here’s what you need to know:

Cannabidiol, or CBD for short, is one component of both the hemp and cannabis plants. As stated above, it seems to be a powerful substance for treating many conditions, so it’s been turned into an extremely profitable industry. The CBD oil sector is expected to be worth in the neighborhood of $20 billion by 2024.

That doesn’t mean that it hasn’t had its struggles. Because it’s so new and studies are still being conducted, most of the evidence of the benefits of CBD is anecdotal. This restricts CBD companies’ ability to advertise the way they’d like to, but there’s still a lot of optimism associated with this magical little substance.

For those that have a stake in CBD already, you know about these struggles. Let’s talk about how you can better advertise your CBD company to take it to the next level.

Finding the Best CBD Advertising Strategies

CBD advertising is a little bit different than in other marketing areas. You have to be smart and crafty to advertise your CBD products the right way. It’s all about understanding the challenges and coming up with interesting ways to move past them.

The Problem Thus Far

There are a lot of challenges when it comes to advertising a new CBD product. Here are a few:

  • Not that many people really know what CBD is or what it does. Until the public is better educated on the facts, you have to factor this lack of knowledge into your advertising strategy.
  • The public won’t know much about CBD, let alone accept it as the powerful substance that it is until research uncovers more about its benefits.
  • Despite that, the market is getting crowded.
  • There are massive branding issues for a lot of CBD product manufacturers.

Content Marketing

Developing a great content strategy for your CBD company is among the best ways to find your audience. You’ll notice with other CBD product companies that they take great care in explaining why their products are beneficial through their blog.

Since many of your prospective customers aren’t going to understand what CBD is or does, it’s important that you explain it to them. You want to have a regular stream of engaging and interesting CBD-related content coming from your company. If you establish yourself as an authority on the matter, you’ll see a boost in traffic and sales.

Social Media & Influencer Marketing

Building trust with your audience is also paramount when marketing a semi-foreign substance. You can do this by building a good following on social media and showing them the ins and outs of your day to day operations.

Giving them a peek behind the curtain will help shed light on an industry that has been closely associated with cannabis, which doesn’t have a great reputation. The more you can post about how you extract CBD oil, how you add it to your products, and how using the products is completely safe, the better you can build that trust.

To grow your social media following, you can try out influencer marketing. Since you’re likely going to start with a younger audience, it’s good to find new customers over social media. If you can’t gain their trust on your own, use the clout of someone with their own following to give you a hand.

Not only will this bring in new people, but it can help you build your brand.

Brand Building

Let’s deal with the issue of market crowding. Since there are so many new CBD companies popping up, and we’re sure to see more in the coming years, you’re going to have to take your branding to another level. Building a great brand that can both attract current CBD users and people that are thinking about using it is crucial.

Part of it will come from a great social media feed combined with a solid content strategy. If your website and socials have a great look and a consistent, powerful voice, then you can really establish your brand as a force to be reckoned with in the world of CBD.

Take a look at some other CBD companies and you’ll notice that they all have a similar vibe to them: vaguely medical, naturopathic, or associated with cannabis. If you can break the mold a little bit with something unique, you can get ahead of the competition. But, you have to make it work.

CBD Specific Marketing Pros

There’s no doubt that CBD advertising is a completely different beast than advertising for any other kind of company. The unique challenges that it presents are daunting for most digital marketing professionals, but not us. If you want to advertise your CBD company the right way, use marketers that understand the industry on a deeper level.

At Forge Digital Marketing, we specialize in CBD-specific influencer marketing, social media marketing, web design, SEO, and brand identity design. You don’t have to do the whole digital advertising thing on your own, hire a company that can help you promote your CBD products the right way.

Explore CBD Marketing Tactics here.

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Social Media

Instagram has blossomed into a B2B/B2C platform over the past few years and we are here to show you how to take advantage of it!  Here are some helpful tips that will boost your business’ account in 2019!

Timing is Everything— Instagram Business

 The ever so popular question when it comes to Instagram is, “when should I post?” There is not a one size fits all answer but there are tools to help you find the answer that best suits your account. 

If you have a business account, you can use Instagram analytics to see when exactly your followers are active, so your posts get in front of more people. 

There are also tools out there that can assist you with this like, WhenToPost app which dives deep into your account’s insights and lets you know when your potential for max engagement is at its peak. 

Double Down on Distribution—

Instagram can be tricky; the algorithm can throw a post that you thought would really catch people’s attention into left field and end up getting little to no engagement.

This is where stories come in. 

Not only will you post that photo or video but get on your story and let your followers know that you just uploaded new content.  This way, if they miss it on their feed they will see your story at the top and be directed to your page’s newest piece. 

Comments are Vital—

When you get a comment on a post your first reaction should be to comment back. 

Do not just comment an emoji or “thanks”; be insightful and conversational with your commenters and create a conversation that others can join in on ask well.

Community Outreach—

The key to growing a community is to be active in it.  Just like you respond to those who comment on your posts you should do the same on other people’s posts. 

Search a popular hashtag and comment leaving a question or feedback pertaining to the post. 

Skim the comments for questions you may have the answer to. 

The more you are active, the more people on Instagram will know you.  Make sure you are adding value, though, so you aren’t known for the wrong reasons. 

Liking other users’ comments—

While you are surfing the community doing your best to add value, keep an eye out for others who have something to offer as well. 

Like comments that add insight to the niche you are in to show that person you acknowledge their comment and/or agree with what they said. 

Think of it as giving props to those who are making the community a better place, you may make a few friends along the way.

BONUS TIP: Be Direct in your Direct Messages—

A somewhat new feature on Instagram is the ability to send voice memos through DM. 

As voice continues to grow in 2019 use this to your advantage to connect with your followers.  Use this feature to say hello to new followers, say thank you to those who have supported you along the way and even answer questions this way. 

Putting a voice in the mix can create a connection with your followers that is unique and personable. 

Stay Consistent—

Whether you post five times a week or ten times a week it is crucial you stay consistent and on schedule. 

Times of day may change depending on your engagements and activity that was mentioned before but posting on a regular basis is a big step in staying relevant in the busy realm of Instagram.

Pay Attention to what Works—

Using the analytics Instagram provides for you it is highly recommended that you look at your past posts and see what did best; what had high engagement, what sparked up a conversation, what is it that worked in the past that will work for you in the future.  Always try to learn something from what the insights tell you so your posts can stay effective.

Try using these tips in your Instagram strategy this year, keep in mind that none of these are going to make your business account an overnight success.  Just like you stay consistent in posting new content, stay consistent in applying these steps and watch your Instagram turn into something you are proud of and that ultimately works for your business’ goals!

Still looking for help growing your account?

Our team at Forge Digital Marketing has dedicated account managers that know how to grow your social media engagement in your business’ niche. Contact us today!

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Blogging, Email Marketing, Marketing, Social Media, Video

Constantly producing high-quality content that is desirable is quite challenging, so make it a little easier on yourself by repurposing that content — turning it into other formats! We call this a content repurposing framework.

Studies reveal that while half of marketers struggle to produce enough content, only 29% repurpose content strategically.

Sounds like a huge area for opportunity right?

You are correct!

So consider spreading your brilliant content as far as possible and learn how to maximize its use to maximize your traffic!

Here’s how to repurpose your content:Canva for content repurposing - How to repurpose content marketing - Forge Digital Marketing | Naperville, IL

1 – Create content with the idea of repurposing it for something else.

This will make it easier to divide and mold it the way you want for another medium.

In addition, creating something with the idea of ultimately using it for something else gives rise to all around better content.

Content can be longer and more in-depth, dividing into sections as needed. This way, your audience will not feel like you are cutting corners.

It is equally important to create graphics with the intent of repurposing. They need to be embedded inline with your post and go along with your social channels.

If you lack resources of a professional graphic designer, consider using an online tool like Canva which allows you to create one image and size it for multiple applications like social media channels, blog images, and more.

 

2 – Make scroll-stopping content

Make that content (on whatever medium) really awesome.

Like, 10X content–ten times better than anything ever produced.

So it will probably be pretty lengthy.

Start with strong keyword research (obviously). You don’t want to spend a lot of time creating something no one really cares about or will search for on the internet.

Implement the Skyscraper Technique, coined by Brian Dean of Backlinko, so your content is extra mind-blowing.

Study similar content that ranks for your chosen keyword  (check out Neil Patel’s free tool, Ubersuggest) and fill in any missing information and/or offer new ideas to make your content extra desirable. Stay relevant and scatter keywords that will harness good traffic throughout.

Neil Patel - Ubersuggest
3 – Use convenient tools to help you repurpose content

Repurpose, repurpose, repurpose!

There are tons of tools to make turning your pre-existing content into something else more seamless: 

PrintFriendly will transform your blog post into PDFs. Just paste a URL and click a button. It is free!

SlideShare is also free and turns any article content into a slide deck.


4 – Turn written word into easily consumable video

 

Turning written words into video clips can be a lot more tricky if you don’t have an in-house video editing person. However, it’s very worth investing in video editing or animation services as it often takes a while longer to read something than to watch it. 

Did you know? Customers who watch video from your company are 2-3x more likely to convert than those who do not.

Consider creating explainer videos or star on screen yourself! Work on a condensed script so that you do not appear clueless in front of the camera.

Videos are a great way to show, not tell. You can further repurpose videos on different platforms. Publish on Facebook or on LinkedIn, or even make a YouTube mini-series with strong calls to action at the end of each clip to attract traffic.

 


Do you repurpose your content? If so, leave a comment below with your best tip or hack!

Need help boosting your content marketing strategy? Request your free discovery call with the Forge team now.


 

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Website Design & Development
It’s really easy to get comfortable with your website. You may have invested a lot in your initial site design or development or you might just think that having something up is all you need for your digital presence. The truth is, customers that visit your site regularly for updated information on sales, events, etc. expect to see a consistent effort in updating your website. We all have the attention span of goldfish these days, and if our attention is not captured, we won’t stick around. A great way to determine if people are getting bored is to check your Google Analytics and monitor your bounce rate on your pages (email or chat us if you would like help looking up these stats). Anyway, here are 5 signs it might be time for a website redesign!

1. You’re not generating leads or customers

This is your biggest sign that it’s time for a website redesign. We implore you to not just look at your website as a static, unchanging flyer for your business. NO! Your website is your BIGGEST marketing tool and should be leveraged to funnel new clients and customers into your business and ultimately generate revenue for you.

2. You’re not mobile optimized

It’s almost 2018 and if your site is not optimized to be viewed on mobile devices, well, it’s bad. You could be missing out on 60% or more of your potential website visitors. No one wants to pinch to expand and scroll around all your tiny text! Time for a website redesign | Mobile Optimized Website | Forge Digital Marketing

3. You’re not ranking in Google

If you don’t rank locally for your own website name, you probably don’t have a Search Engine Optimized website. SEO is a technique that digital marketers use to help websites rank higher up in Google Search results. With more people being able to find your website, you will have more traffic and that means more leads! SEO is a consistent, ongoing service we offer to help our customers get found by people searching for businesses just like yours!

4. Your site is slow

Another sign that your site is not optimized is the speed at which it loads. If your site loads slowly, people will leave within 3 seconds! Yes, just 3 seconds of wait time is enough to discourage people from using your website. ? Think of all the lost leads! Want to see just how slow your site is? Give it a test at https://tools.pingdom.com/

5. Your content is stale

So many small business owners are too busy actually running their business to take time to generate exciting new content for online viewers. The best way to connect with your customers is through video marketing. People would much rather watch a video on your website or social media pages than read a ton of text about your offerings. Another great way to boost SEO and grab attention is through a consistently updated blog! See, you read till the end of this post! Is your website guilty of these 5 sins? Then it’s definitely time for a redesign. Contact us today for a free discovery session where we discuss the gameplan of your website redesign!
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Marketing
Have you ever thought the best way to market your newest product is to launch it into the freakin’ cosmos with the help of Rob Lowe? In what seems like an ever-higher standard to do the craziest, wackiest thing one can do to grab millennials’ attention, KFC is boldly going where no chicken sandwich has been before: space. Whaaaaat? I can think of a million things that may be more beneficial to launch into space, but hey, I’m not a multi-million dollar chain with money to blow on Chicken Sandwich Space Expeditions™. So what exactly is the plan, anyway? According to Kevin Hochman, KFC’s chief concept officer, “I have no idea how we’ll launch a chicken sandwich into space, but the marketing team thinks they can do it…” Well, okay. Good enough for me! In the playful advertisement, Rob Lowe, who is officially the newest Colonel Sanders (Yeah, I know, how much are they paying him?), gives an inspiring speech about how they’re taking the Zinger sandwich to – ahem – new heights.
If there’s one thing to be taken away from this, it’s that KFC is trying its darndest to get back in the spotlight. Nobody really talks about KFC anymore, at least, I know I don’t. So, what’s a chicken chain to do but dream up a huge publicity stunt starring their new, wildly popular chicken sandwich: The Zinger? Wendy’s has their “never frozen” beef, Chipotle has GMO-free food, Burger King has their flamed-grilled burgers (what does that even mean?) and KFC has, uhh… a chicken sandwich in space? Despite the hilarity of it, it’s actually proving effective in providing plenty of media coverage and exposure for the brand. Millennials and Generation Z are eating this kind of off-brand marketing up. Gone are the days of advertisements extolling features, benefits and wholesome family fun. Nope! We’re launching things into the freakin’ galaxy now. I wish I wasn’t serious, but I do believe this is the direction advertising is going. Nothing is too ridiculous, too unfeasible, for our industry giants to try. Advertising spending is only going to increase, and as consumers are forced to filter through more and more options, brands and their agencies are going to have to get very creative in their schemes to get consumers hooked. Robe Lowe sums up the feelings of this campaign quite nicely: “There is one question that will be able to answer with certainty very soon: Can you actually launch KFC’s world-famous Zinger chicken sandwich into space? The answer is: We certainly hope so. Our entire marketing campaign depends on it.” Craving more marketing knowledge with your Zinger? Check out these articles!
Why Advertising Has Shifted From Product Features to Brand Persona
That One Time Don Draper Collaborated With David Miami
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