On Tuesday 16 June, 2015, Leaders in Heels is holding our first-ever workshop about Creating Brand Awareness Online. It’s a free event held at Fishburners, 608 Harris Street, Ultimo NSW. In the lead-up to the event, we’ve asked our amazing speakers a few questions about online branding, and any tips they have for entrepreneurs.

First up to bat is Andre Weyher–we’ll let him tell you about who he is and what he does.

Andre

1. What do you do and what is your experience with Creating Brand Awareness Online?

I’m currently the Marketing Director at LegalVision – Australia’s best online business legal hub. We help Australian (small) businesses with highest quality, fixed fee legal work. Because of the online nature of our business the marketing focus is 90% online. I manage our AdWords campaigns, organic rankings through SEO efforts and brand awareness through events, online branding and content distribution. Before LegalVision I was with Google for 5 years as an AdWords and organic search quality specialist.

2. How has online branding changed over the past 5 years online? 

People are slowly getting tired of the standard advertising they are bombarded with every day. In order to really stand out, a company needs to look beyond the basic advertising that consists of banners and move towards either creating exceptional value through content which truly informs an audience. The focus shifted from just shouting, towards shouting something very interesting and knowing who you shout it to.

3. What is one common mistake you’ve seen people make when marketing their brand online?

Not knowing who your target audience is and not writing for a niche.

4. What is one hot tip you’d give entrepreneurs if they have never marketed before?

Everyone who runs a business has a passion for whatever product or service they are selling. That passion and knowledge is the biggest asset that you have in your arsenal. Find your target audience and flaunt your knowledge and passion as much as you can. There is nothing more valuable for your SEO efforts than high quality, niche content targeted at a pre set audience who will benefit from it. You are the biggest marketing tool you have!

Find your target audience and flaunt your knowledge and passion as much as you can.

5. If you had to be a brand, who would you be and why?

I would aspire to be “Victorinox” Swiss Army knife. I’ve used their gear very often while mountain climbing and I associate them with durability and best in class equipment. They also have a very strong marketing team that’s always ahead of the curve and knows how to find it’s target audience. 

 If you liked what Andre had to say and want to hear more about how to create your brand awareness online, CLICK HERE to register for the Creating Brand Awareness Online workshop–places are limited!
Andre Weyher SEO Basics

Just like with a bottle of wine, the quality of your SEO strategy and implementation matters immensely. Choosing a quality bottle of wine over a cheap one ensures you are not left with a hangover. In a similar vein, just because your business employs SEO techniques doesn’t necessarily mean that you’re obtaining maximum benefit. Poor SEO strategies and sloppy implementation can bring hangovers of their own–for instance, in the form of penalties and loss of ranking. Here are some ways in which your business’s SEO strategy can benefit from the wisdom of wine.

Champagne

Champagne is often called upon during celebrations. The popping of the cork occurs with great fanfare, and flutes of bubbly champagne are poured with excitement. However, once the fizz disappears, champagne turns flat quickly. Similarly, coming up with a new SEO strategy and implementing it for the first time can be exciting, but if you haven’t chosen well, your traffic or conversion rate will start to stagnate. A good SEO strategy shouldn’t fizzle out but provide long lasting results.

Cheap wine

It’s easy to pick up a bottle of cheap, low quality wine at a supermarket, but drinking too much of such wine can result in hangovers. Similarly, a quick and cheap SEO campaign can be inexpensive and convenient to implement due to sketchy practices such as the use of low quality link directories, link farms, link exchanges and black hat tactics, but can result in negative results. Your traffic may increase momentarily, but your site could later be associated with numerous dodgy links and suffer from drops in rankings and penalties from search engines, which are costly mistakes to rectify.

Big bold red wine

Just like a big, bold glass of red wine, the opening of a new website full of quality content can be a grand affair. However, red wine needs to breathe so that its flavour and aroma can open up. Similarly, your beautiful new website’s exposure needs to be maximised so it can become truly effective. High quality SEO will enable your site to expand its exposure to relevant visitors, and in so doing will ensure your site fulfils its marketing potential. The more exposure your site receives, the greater its potential popularity as visitors share your links on social media platforms and through word of mouth.

Expensive wine

Just as a high quality bottle of wine only gets better with age, so too should a website with well-implemented SEO. With the use of proper SEO techniques, your site should get better and better as it matures, with your page rank increasing and traffic growing at a steady pace.

Rather than first drinking a poor quality bottle of wine and then regretting it, it is better to choose the right bottle of wine at the start. Similarly, implementing the right SEO techniques from the start will ensure that over time your site gets as much of the right kinds of traffic as possible, rather than being saddled with numerous problems.

Featured Image Credit: Kubina

Marisa South

Marisa is a Senior Digital Media Analyst at www.seoworks.com. She loves getting her hands dirty, dives head first into anything related to Digital Media and thrives on obtaining significant results for her clients. She’s artistic, creative and when not playing hide and seek with her two young children she’s usually sipping a crisp white and plotting the next strategy that sets her clients apart from their competitors.


I’m regularly asked by businesses how they get their website to perform better on the search engines. It’s as if they think there is a magic lever somewhere, all they have to do is be told where it is, pull it, and thereafter they will live in blissful harmony, with an endless supply of traffic and leads coming their way.

Social media optimization

The reality is, that there are over 200 factors determining how your web pages will rank on search engines, and in more recent years your social graph i.e. what social media properties you have, the size of your communities and the level of engagement that is occurring on these activities, can also impact on how well your website performs.

At the end of 2010, amidst a lot of rumours, Matt Cutts, currently the head of the webspam team at Google and much revered blogger on Google topics, posted a video on YouTube saying that Google was starting to use ‘social media signals’ in their search engine results and Bing followed.

Since then, many companies have become ‘more social’, with some aiming to appease the search engines, while others simply aware that a strong social strategy can pay off other dividends too.

Because Google doesn’t obviously give away its algorithm secrets, and changes the goal posts often, some companies have resorted to running interesting tests on how much social affects search.

How much does ‘social’ affect ‘search’?

In one example I am aware of, a company created several websites, in similar markets, and established different social media accounts per website property, with varying levels of social media integrations with the website i.e. icons and feeds, to better understand how much of an impact social can have.

Google +1 button

Probably not many surprises that Google’s own networks i.e. a website that was linked to a Google+ business page helped its search position, as did websites that had Google +1 share buttons embedded. So there’s tip number 1. If you haven’t got a Google+ business page, and weren’t so keen on it from a social networking perspective, consider the search perspective too.

YouTube video on front page

We’ve also had good word direct from Google itself that they LOVE websites which have a YouTube video embedded on their front page. Some kind a ‘show reel’ video of who you are and what you do is obviously good for the user to better understand quickly and easily who you are and what you do, but Google owns YouTube, so more views means more advertising dollars to it. By enabling this on your site, Google may well be compelled to bring you more traffic to see that very video.

But apart from its own properties, who else does Google favour? Well this is purely opinion based, and like a lot of stuff when it comes to Google, even by making the next few statements, they could change the goal posts on us overnight.

Facebook

For the time being, we do notice correlations between those clients who are active on Facebook and have a high level of engagement attracting increasing numbers of users to their website, which in turn, also boosts their rankings. Out of the 200 factors that Google uses to rank, one is the volume of traffic going through your website.

Pinterest

Pinterest is also performing exceptionally well when it comes to providing ‘Google Juice’.

Ever since Pinterest launched its business pages at the end of 2012, and savvy businesses have found ways to promote their various business initiatives on this image driven network, we’ve established our own Pinterest business accounts and carefully monitored our Google Analytics to see how it’s performed, and we’ve been surprised to see Pinterest outperforming Twitter as a key source of visitors in a very short time frame and with minimal effort invested.

The bottom line is it’s high time to get social. Not just because social media is good for your business (and I could give you many more articles on why this is), but because through tests we have conducted as a company, as others have too, for the time being, your social graph seems to be playing an important role.

Yvette Adams

Yvette Adams Profile PicYvette Adams is a serial entrepreneur having started 5 businesses from scratch, the first a newspaper when she was just 17, and 2 of which she has since sold. She is the founder and owner of The Creative Collective, a creative agency offering website design & development, social media, seo, ppc, emarketing, marketing, PR as well as an extensive array of training including webinars, BYO Laptop trainings and more. A multi-award winning business woman her latest online business is awardshub.com – an online portal for business owners wanting to find business awards they may be able to enter. You can follow her on any of her social networks: @yradams, @creativecollect, /thecreativecollective or connect with her on Linkedin.

Top image: Matt Hamm