Core 5® Marketing
After more than 18 years working with businesses and professional practices, we have identified the five most effective marketing channels for attracting new prospects and effectively conveying your value proposition.
We have trademarked these as Core 5® Marketing.
Each of these strategies works independently and can be implemented at any time based on your business needs and budget. But it is the synergistic combination of strategies that creates the magic, expanding your business reach and generating rapid growth.
1. Reputation Marketing
Are online reviews really that important? The short answer is yes!
On a 1-10 scale they rank 14!
According to two independent studies conducted in 2021* almost 9 out of 10 people looking for a vendor (87%) will look for reviews on a business before contacting them. This is because potential customers almost always want to see some form of “social proof” as demonstrated by the experience of your past customers. The search engines prioritize these reviews as well, giving preference in search results to companies who have an excellent reputation.
Our Reputation Marketing Program does 3 things:
1. Monitor the top 19 online directories where people leave reviews and notifies you immediately if a customer leaves a review for you so you can respond.
2. We create a feedback page that is uniquely branded for your business. We then attach an autoresponder to that page that invites your customers, clients, and patients to visit your social page to leave their review. If they leave a 4-5 star review, they are shown a short video inviting them to click on a link and leave their review on a third party site. We strongly recommend that you choose Google. If someone leaves less than a 4 star review, they are directed to a different page where a different video invites them to share their experience to help you improve your service. This important step intercepts a bad review allowing you to try and make things right with that customer. During this stage we also invite our clients to provide us with their customer list so that we can send them a series of customized emails each month asking them for their review.
3. We add a widget to your website so that the most current 5-star reviews are displayed to new visitors. We then take the best reviews and syndicate them to all of your social media channels. We also create a Reputation Video each month from one of your reviews and publish it to more than 60 online video sites. The result of this concentrated focus on reviews will quickly set your business up to be the leader in customer satisfaction resulting in more leads and conversions.
*This statistic is based on studies conducted by both Real Strategic and Bright Local – two US Based International Marketing Agencies.
2. Funnel Automation
It is rare that a prospect for your product or service chooses you without first doing some level of research. The Internet almost guarantees that!
How do you distinguish your business from the multitude of competitors all clamoring for the same prospect?
With a properly designed marketing funnel.
The hub of that funnel is your website. All of your advertising is designed to invite a prospect to visit your website to learn more about you and your business. If that website is going to convert visitors into customers it must do more than just look good. It must convey your value proposition in a clear and understandable way.
In other words, your website must answer this question: “Why would I choose to do business with you over the other companies that are available to me?”
Think of your website like a retail store at the mall, let’s say a shoe store. Imagine that you are looking for a new pair of casual shoes to wear for the summer. You go to the mall because you know there will be several shoe stores and you should be able to get the perfect shoe at a good price.
Upon entering the mall you stop at the first shoe store you see. There you find a wall with a large variety of shoes on display. After looking through the selection you find one that you might be interested in, pick up the display model and check the price. If the price is right, you look around for a clerk so you can try on a pair.
Here is where it gets interesting and is directly related to your business website.
Even if the pair of shoes you try on fits well, is priced right, and would be a shoe you would wear this summer, the chances are extraordinarily high that you’ll smile at the clerk, tell her that ‘you’ll think about it’ and leave. You then walk down the mall and stop at the next shoe store. And then the next.
Why didn’t you buy from the first store?
It wasn’t because you didn’t like the store, or their poor selection, or the price was out of your budget. You left the first store because you wanted to make sure you were getting the best shoe at the best price possible. You wanted to check out the options. Maybe you bought from the second store, or the fourth, or went back to the first.
Just like someone shopping for shoes at the mall, your prospective customers browse around from website to website, just to see what is available and what your competitors sites look like.
When they find that your website looks pretty much like everyone else’s they call the company they happen to look at last or that they think might be the cheapest.
The job of your website is to convince visitors beyond any doubt that you are the best choice.
Your advantages should be communicated in clear, compelling, and passionate language. Don’t hold back, put your best value propositions on your website. Give people enough information, enough evidence, and enough proof that you’re the best choice.
We design stunning, mobile-ready websites that load quickly, rank well, and convert new customers. More important, we craft compelling and persuasive content that passionately conveys your value proposition!
Your website is the hub, but a properly designed marketing funnel also includes outbound marketing campaigns designed to create an inbound response, highly focused landing pages, and well written answers to the questions your prospects are asking.
Let our Funnel Design specialists help you design a “Lead Faucet” that will bring you new business.
3. Paid Search Advertising
Perhaps the most misunderstood (and mis-used) marketing channel is paid advertising. Whether you are buying ad placement on Google, Bing, Facebook, or cold marketing banner ads you are paying to attract the attention of prospects searching for what you offer. That would seem to be a relatively simple proposition. However, the reality is that correctly managing paid search is a highly specialized skill. Is paid search even necessary for a local business? Absolutely! Want proof? Search your business category on Google. Here’s what you’ll find:
1. At the top of the page are paid ads.
2. The “Map Pack”
3. Organic Results (many of which are national brands and directory sites)
In most cases you won’t find an organic listing for a local business until the bottom half of the page. The
first page of Google has become a “pay to play” field. Want proof? Here are the facts:
1. Paid ads now get roughly 50% of all clicks on results pages.
2. Paid traffic converts nearly 47% better than organic traffic.
3. 52% of people who click a company’s paid ad call that company.
Of course than means your paid ad campaigns must be done the right way. Achieving the “quality score” that Google uses for ad placement and pricing in a complex process that takes a consistent effort over time. Our paid advertising team is Google certified and has managed more than $10 million in ad spend. We know how to get an excellent return on investment for our clients.
Paid ad campaigns are not limited to just Google. Have you ever shopped on Amazon or eBay and then seen ads for what you were looking at for the next few days? That’s Retargeting, and until recently was only affordable for large national companies. That is no longer the case. Our 10X Omni-Pixel strategy for retargeting, banner advertising, Hyperlocal and Time Lapse Targeting programs are available now to local businesses and professional practices. These allow you to ‘keep your brand’ in front of visitors long after they have left your website. You can also use these highly focused techniques to target new markets.
Paid advertising can be complex. Having the Alchemy team working with you to optimize these important marketing channels offers both the fastest path to page one in the search results and a high return on your investment.
4. Social Media Marketing
Can you really create a flood of new customers, clients, or patients through social media?
The reality is, probably not, at least not quickly. Most people looking for a product or service go to Google when they’re ready to buy, not Facebook or another social media platform.
Should a local business even be on social media? Yes, but you must approach social media with the right mindset. Realize that it is more of a branding strategy than direct results marketing.
Social media is a place to nurture relationships—to “farm” rather than “hunt.” Which social media sites should you be active on? That’s simple…the sites your prospects follow. Most businesses need a Facebook business page, and we recommend a LinkedIn profile for the business owners and managing partners.
Beyond that you must know the sites your prospective customer frequents. Those are the sites where you want to consistently publish content.
A hidden benefit for a comprehensive social media strategy is the consistent creation/curation of quality content. This will help in your search engine optimization efforts since Google loves fresh content.
A frequent mistake is to try and sell your product or services using social media rather than offering content that is both interesting and informative. Our proven social media strategies can help you attract new customers and be sure that your business stays top-of-mind. Our program to make you a social media star is based on a unique formula we call R.E.C.I.P.E. That is an acronym for the six types of content we curate and publish on behalf of our clients. These include:
R – Recreational
E – Educational
C – Conversational
I – Inspirational
P – Promotional
E – Entrepreneurial
By creating highly engaging content in these six areas, content that is focused on bringing value to the viewer, we help your business stand out in the sea of meaningless platitudes and generalities offered by your competitors.
5. Search Engine Optimization
The most technically demanding product we offer helps our clients’ websites get found.
Search Engine Optimization (the process of ranking a page in the search results) was relatively easy several years ago but now that is no longer the case!
With 1.2 billion websites on the Internet (March, 2021) it is increasingly difficult to find your website on the first two pages for any meaningful keywords.
85% of consumers use search engines to find local businesses which means that if you are not engaged in SEO, you are only reaching about 15% of your potential market.
Taking it one step further, over 90% of online searchers don’t go beyond the first page of results, and the first three organic results receive 30% to 50% of all organic clicks.
What this means is that not doing SEO is not an option, but doing it poorly is also not an option. Nor can you just quit when you taste success. If you reach page one you must continue your SEO efforts if you want to stay there. You must continue for as long as you are in business. Period.
Another fact about search engine optimization: it is a marathon, not a sprint. And just like running a marathon, it takes months of hard and consistent work.
Our process starts with a deep dive analysis of your website and how it complies with the latest
search engine algorithms.
We also evaluate the keywords that are relevant to your business, how frequently they are searched, and how many of your competitors are ranking for those keywords.
Other important strategies include regularly updated, quality content, video, driving direct traffic, creating links, guest blog posts, and much more.
This combination of optimizing your website for the search engines and then a consistently applied program of both on and off-site strategies designed to enhance your presence online comprise our search engine optimization program.
There is no quick fix!
This is a slow, methodical process that will, over time, bring your website to the forefront for keywords that actually matter and that are being searched by your prospects.