Need a CTA Button? Get One for FREE

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CTA stands for Call to Action, and on your website it should be a button.

When I meet with clients the first thing I ask them is:
What do you want people to do?

Obviously there are many things that can be done on your website, but what is the most important? If you had a choice, what would you want people to do? What is the best ACTION a visitor can take for YOUR business? This is your Call to Action.

Why a Button?

Many studies have been performed around the best way to present the call to action on your website. The size, shape and color of your button has been discussed ad nauseum. The most important thing to remember is to have a limited number of CTA’s per page. A single CTA is the best.

As for size and color, the goal is to make sure it stands out. The key is to make it HIGH CONTRAST so it pops out on the page.

The Blur Test

Not sure if your CTA button stands out? Try scrolling up and down the page fast enough that you can’t read the copy. Do you still know where to click? Or you can try blurring out the copy and see if it is still clear where to click:

 
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Even with the copy blurred, you still know where to click, on the high contrast red CTA button.

Get Your Free CTA Button

Yes I actually created some promotional buttons you can pin on your shirt, backpack or denim jacket. But if you want a CTA button that helps your website I will add one to your site for free as well. Click the button below to send me an email and get your free CTA button.

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Amazon Gift Card Giveaway: Make a Referral and get a $25 Gift Card for You and a Friend

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Do you know someone who wants to get more customers from their website or they need other marketing help? If they become a client you will get a $25 Amazon gift card, and so will they.

To make sure we are a good fit, take a look at a list of services offered.

And yes, you can refer yourself to get the gift card.

Your Name *
Your Name
Name of person you are referring *
Name of person you are referring

HOW TO: Hire Someone for SEO - Learn what Google recommends when it comes to hiring for SEO

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I came across this great video from Google's Maile Ohye offering tips on how to hire someone to help your website get found using SEO (Search Engine Optimization):

 

SPOILER: Build a quality site that is good for your customers.

She goes into detail about linking, audits and optimizing, but upfront she shares my sentiment that the key to SEO is focusing on creating a great experience for your customers. After all, what Google is trying to do is send their customers to sites that provide a good experience.

It’s easy to be fooled by slick salespeople telling you that you will rank #1 and gain all the web traffic overnight. It takes time to build your business and reputation, online and in the real world. Slow and steady wins the race.


Want to know more? Check out Internet Marketing for Newbies.

 
 

HOW TO: Define Your Key Offer to Connect with Customers and Increase Sales

Netflix’s key offer is to start a free trial

Netflix’s key offer is to start a free trial

 

When working with clients I help them focus on providing a key offer. A key offer is technically a sales promotion tool. Sales promotions are a good way to break into a market by providing a motivator for new customers to try your product. Sales promotion is usually confused with personal selling because the term “sales” is used.

While they work well when used together, they are different marketing tools. Personal selling is the process of interaction between the seller and the consumer while sales promotion is the use of specific incentives or rewards to induce trial of a product.

Inducing Trial

Sales promotions typically offer a discount, rebate, or reward for trying a new product thus reducing the perceived risk for NEW clients to try a product.

For example, if you can buy the new “Brand X” toothpaste for half price with a coupon, then theoretically you have reduced the risk of trial by 50%.

The idea is that once the clients try the product, they will be sufficiently impressed to continue to purchase the product at the regular price. You are demonstrating to the consumer faith in your own product by providing incentives.

Types of Sales Promotion

  • Coupons

  • Buy one, Get one (BoGo)

  • Free with purchase

  • Bonus-size packages

  • In-store specials and sales

  • Contests

  • Loyalty programs

  • Sweepstakes

  • Rebates

  • Events

Make Them Effective

Be wary of discounts – when you lower your price, you are lowering the perceived value of your product. This makes it difficult to charge full price later. A good approach is to offer a buy one, get one scenario (BoGo). For example, buy one at full price and get one at half price. This helps you cover the cost of your promotion and does not devalue your product. In fact, it reinforces the value that you are offering.

Target carefully – if possible, only give coupons to new or potential customers. Your current customers should happily be paying full price.

Set a Time Limit – Sales promotions should be used for only a limited time. Always have an expiration date - the shorter, the better. Long-term expirations diminish urgency for consumers. Often they will set the offer aside and forget about it until it is too late. Another reason to limit their duration is that extended or continual sales promotion activities lead to a devaluation of the product in the eyes of clients. If there is always a coupon available for half off, they will not ever want to pay full price. The goal is to get customers to use the product and then pay the regular market price. Unlimited sales promotion for an item is not really sales promotion; it is a lowering of the price, which is not a good idea.

Develop Your Key Offer

You must develop a key offer that will take down the barrier between you and new customers. When I started promoting my marketing consulting company, I offered people the ability to download my marketing books for free from my website. While getting my books for free is a good value, it was not generating new clients.

My focus is on digital marketing and helping people get customers from their websites. Before I met with a potential client, I would always look over their website. A friend recommended I start offering website audits, which I did, and my business was transformed. Suddenly I was being rewarded for something I was already doing but not publicizing.

I realized that saying that I did marketing consulting or optimized websites still left a barrier in starting conversations with potential clients. I assume they were wondering “how much does that cost? What does that mean exactly?” and “I don’t want to waste his time.” By offering a free audit, I take those objections out of the equation and get the conversations started.

I now meet with a lot of people and go over their websites with them, and a certain percentage of them become paying customers.

One of the first things I do with my clients is to help them define their key offer to their customers. I have an attorney that would always provide the first meeting for free, but he did not tell people that. Now the focus of his website is to offer people a free consultation.

What is the key offer you can make that will take down the barrier between you and new customers?

Make it Digital

Call to action for Carla Jones Real Estate

Call to action for Carla Jones Real Estate

Since I focus on digital I help clients build websites that lead visitors into accepting their key offer. Whether starting a trial, downloading a guide or booking a consultation, the goal of the site is to generate a connection with qualified leads. Typically you will see a button with this offer prominently displayed on the site. What is your key offer? How do you communicate this to your target audience?


Need Help Defining or Promoting Your Key Offer?

Daehn's Hierarchy of Digital Marketing

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I am an expert in digital marketing. An important skill for experts is to be able to take a lot of information and boil it down to the essential must know components for success.

We live in an age of information overload. Learning about digital marketing is but a Google search away. What I present here are the four areas that are foundational to a successful digital marketing strategy.

They are chronological and should be built out in order.

1st Website

Your website is your most important digital asset. Everything you do should be built on driving traffic to your website. Your site should be built for conversion and turning visitors into customers. Content is key to creating a well converting website.

2nd Email

Email is the primary form of digital communication. Your website should be built to obtain email addresses so that you can continue to talk and market to your site’s visitors and customers. Automated campaigns, confirmations, onboarding, triggers, reminders, customer service and newsletters are all important components of your email strategy. Email should be used to distribute content from your site, and drive people back to your website for conversion.

3rd Social Media

The best social media builds a community around your product or service. This requires interacting and building relationships. Social media should also be used to distribute content from your site, and drive people back to your website for conversion.

4th Paid Ads

If the first 3 areas are in place and you still have a budget and/or need to generate leads, you are ready for paid ads. Ads should drive traffic to specific areas of your website and/or landing pages that directly relate to the content of the ad.

Need help with your digital marketing strategy? Let me know.

Why You Must Claim Your Business on Google

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Claiming your business listing on Google is one of the most important things you can do. The good news is that It’s pretty easy to get done, and it’s free.

I work with a lot of small business owners that don’t have a large marketing budget. They want to know how to get started and the best place to focus their resources. I always emphasize the hierarchy of digital marketing: 1st Website, 2nd Email, 3rd Social Media, 4th Paid Ads.

But a quick thing you can do today is to claim and update your business listing on Google. This provides the info people will see when they search for your business directly, or a product or service that you offer.

This listing is shown to potential customers based on geography. So if you type “Italian Food Near Me”, Google will display Italian restaurants in your area.

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This is why you want to claim your listing and make sure the information is correct (hours, location, pricing, etc.)

These listing also provide ratings and reviews for your business. By claiming your listing you can interact with people leaving comments about you.

Go to Google.com/Business to review or claim your business today.


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PS - Google just added the ability to add a Shortname for your business. Make sure you claim yours before someone else does.

A New Look for Your Google Results

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Google's New Look

Just a quick word on an updated look for Google's Mobile Search Results. They will soon be adding a logo for your brand next to your name on the page. This is the image that appears in the browser tab - also known as a favicon.

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If you need help adding or updating the favicon/logo for your website, I can help.

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Read the full details from Google

Let me know if you need help updating your favicon.

A Stormy Visit to Missouri

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It was a fun and wild month filled with travel, crazy weather and sports fantasies come true.

I was able to visit Missouri to see some clients, visit with family, and see my childhood team win the Stanley Cup Conference Final. All of this while evading a couple of tornadoes. 


Missouri Tornadoes

I had the privilege of visiting the Missouri State Capitol and spending some time with my client, the Missouri Republican Party.

I got the grand tour from former representative and current director of the Missouri GOP, Jean Evans. You can see a picture of her sitting at her desk below. While there, I was able to use the office next door to her. 

A week later a tornado hit and tore the roof off. 

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Evans and her team have had to relocate for now and are working on getting the office rebuilt. If you would like to help please go here to make a donation. Any amount is appreciated.


Storming into the Playoffs

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While in St. Louis I was able to attend 3 Stanley Cup Final playoff games, including the clinching game 6.

While heading to my seats for game 6 my phone starts buzzing and warning that I should take shelter. The arena staff directed us to go to our seats because that was the safest place. 

So while another storm raged outside, the Blues won the Western Conference inside. A very St. Louis night.



Back to Reality

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I'm back in town and still rooting for the Blues. They are one win away from winning the Stanley Cup for the first time. It will all end this weekend or in a Game 7 on Wednesday.

Whoever wins, I will be back to work presenting the lecture I gave at CSUF a few weeks ago to the La Habra Chamber of Commerce - HOW TO: Effectively Integrate Social Media into Your Marketing Strategy.

Social Media can be an effective part of your marketing, but there are some cautions to be aware of. A good strategy is key.

Thursday 6/13 - 9:30-10:30 AM
La Habra Chamber of Commerce - 321 E La Habra Blvd, La Habra, CA 90631

Please let me know if you would like to attend as my guest. You do not need to be a member of the chamber to participate.

CSUF Presentation - HOW TO: Effectively Integrate Social Media into Your Marketing Strategy

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I had the pleasure of speaking to the Entrepreneurial students at California State University in Fullerton. I met some bright young minds with some great ideas.

My message for them was that while social media is popular, it is only a part of a good overall marketing strategy.

Download the Presentation (PDF)
Download the Presentation (PPT)

 

PRESENTATION: Business by The Book: Aligning Your Organization with Biblical Principles

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UPDATE: Here are the presentation slides


I will be giving a presentation at the Placentia chapter of the Christian Business Partners called Business by The Book: Aligning Your Organization with Biblical Principles.

Here is a summary:

Successful organizations have something in common, they are aligned with a set of principles that allow them to prosper. This presentation covers what principles are, where they come from and how to align with them.

Let me know if you would like to visit as my guest. This is a free networking group for Christians to support each other’s businesses. You do not need to be a Christian to attend.

Date: Tuesday, January 22
Time: 8:15 - 9:15 AM
Location: Marie Callendar’s in Placentia (Map)
Admission: Free (purchase of a meal is requested)

Let me know if you would like to attend.

PRESENTATION: HOW TO: Convert Web Traffic into Customers Using SEO and Inbound Marketing

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CSUF DAEHN

I was honored to speak at the CSUF Center for Entrepreneurship about HOW TO: Convert Web Traffic into Customers Using SEO and Inbound Marketing. We had a great response and the event was sold out. I will try to give the presentation again for those who could not attend. The slides from the presentation are below.

If you want to know if your website is designed to convert site visitors into customers I am offering a free website audit.

Why Your Website is Your Most Important Marketing Asset

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  • 65% of people see online search as the most trusted source of information about people and companies. That’s a higher level of trust than any other online or offline source.

  • 30% of consumers won’t consider a business without a website.

  • 46% say a website is the biggest determinant of whether they trust a company.


If you own a business today, your website is your biggest marketing asset. Even if you get most of your customers from other channels like networking or foot traffic, people still look at your website to see if you are legitimate. Make sure you are using your website as a tool to educate, delight and instill trust in your customers.

What is SEO?

An easy way to understand SEO (Search Engine Optimization) is that it is your reputation with search engines like Google. If you have a good reputation, based on the content on your site, the search engine is more likely to list you as a top result when people search for your product.

The best way to improve SEO is to provide a good user experience (UX) for your site visitors. This is done by providing information, products and/or services in an easy to use way. If your site works well for people, the search engines will like it too because search engines like Google are trying to provide good results to their users.

Understand the Customer Journey

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The Customer Journey is the path your customers will take to make a purchase with you. The path will depend on what you are offering and who your customers are. Be sure to create personas for your target customers first.

So when people visit your website, what do you want them to do? How do you lead them down that path? How do you ask them to do it?

Here’s a clue, if you don’t have any call to action (CTA) buttons on your site, you’re customers probably don’t know what you want them to do.

Why Start with Your Website?

The 7 Keys to Marketing Genius

The 7 Keys to Marketing Genius

 

I’m a marketing professor and have written several marketing books, I love marketing and will talk your ear off about it if you let me. One thing I work with people on is to be strategic. Do some thinking before you spend money. The website is part of your marketing tactics, not really your strategy, so why do I jump ahead to talk about websites with people?

  1. Everyone has a website or needs one

  2. People know what websites are so we can have a conversation

Websites are the way for me to start a conversation with people about their business. From there I can backtrack and make sure their strategy is on target before actually building or updating their current site.

Are You Getting Customers From Your Website?

How many of your customers come from your website? How many people look at your site to see if you are legitimate before they do business with you? If you aren’t sure or you don’t have one, let’s talk.


Do you want an expert to look at your website
and give you recommendations?

Axos Bank Takes Customer Service to the Front Lines

I’ve been using Bank of Internet for the past 6 years and they recently rebranded to Axos Bank, updated their online banking and totally redesigned their app. Pretty ambitious.

While I have appreciated all of the improvements, it truly is a better experience, I could not get the app to work on my phone. Every time I launched the app it would show the splash screen and close. The peculiar thing is that my wife has the exact same phone as me and was able to use the app without an issue.

I left a poor review of the app in the Google Play store saying it did not work for me. Then I got a phone call from someone saying they were in charge of developing the new platform for the bank. He asked if he could meet me in Orange County to troubleshoot my issue?

Being skeptical I asked him to provide evidence that he worked for the bank. This was troublesome because he already had all of MY information. He could see every penny in my account, but how do I vet HIM? So I took a chance at met up with him at Agrusa’s.

His name is Hugh and he brought his developer Anton to try to find out what the issue was with my app. Their office is located in San Diego so they drove up to meet in person. Hugh said he was happy to find someone with the issue he could drive to.

For Hugh and his team it was unacceptable that people were not able to use the app, even if it was just a handful of individuals.

Anton hooked up my phone to his computer and proceeded to go through lines of code to try to replicate and isolate the issue.

Michael Daehn with Hugh and Anton from Axos Bank

Michael Daehn with Hugh and Anton from Axos Bank

3 1/2 hours later they figured out the problem. It had something to do with me setting up fingerprint access on my phone, something my wife had not done.

I commend Hugh, Anton and Axos for taking the customer experience seriously. They didn’t sit behind their computers, but went straight to the front lines and helped out their customer directly.

And by the way, the app is pretty sweet. If you are looking for an online banking solution, check out Axos.

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Check Out Aidtree to Save Money and Succeed Locally

My friend Ben Yip has been working on a really cool product that supports charities, saves money for customers and helps promote local businesses. It’s a win/win/win.

Ben created Aidtree, a service that allows local businesses to offer coupons that drive new customers to try their products.

Customers are able to buy the coupons at a discount and Aidtree gives 75% off the purchase directly to the charity.

Here is an example of how I used the coupon for my business, with the funds going to support the CSUF Entrepreneurship Program:

 

I truly hope this becomes the market leader for fundraising so I can stop trying to get family and friends to buy cookie dough and wrapping paper. This is an elegant solution to a need in the market.

But wait, there’s more…

Checking out Ben’s laptop stands after a meeting at the La Habra Chamber of Commerce

Checking out Ben’s laptop stands after a meeting at the La Habra Chamber of Commerce

While supplies last, Ben will be giving out a sleek portable laptop stand to anyone creating and posting on a new account. Contact Ben at Aidtree for details:

questions@aidtree.com
323) 387-3388

Michael Daehn Supports City Net to Help End Homelessness

City Net and Local Police Helping our Homeless Neighbors at the OC Flood Control Channel (riverbed) in Cypress, CA.

City Net and Local Police Helping our Homeless Neighbors at the OC Flood Control Channel (riverbed) in Cypress, CA.

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I am proud to support City Net, a team of nonprofit professionals who work to end street-level homelessness in a city or region through the coordination of community efforts and activities. I have been looking for a charity to support through my business and after hearing how City Net works with our homeless neighbors, and praying about it, I was convinced this was the best choice.

I will be donating 10% of gross profits from my marketing consulting business (Rent My CMO/The Marketing Guy) to support the efforts of City Net. But here is the cool thing, when you hire me you are also supporting an awesome cause, helping our homeless neighbors.

If you are like me, you struggle with seeing members of our community living on the street. As I was told by our friends at City Net, “No one wants to be homeless.” But what do we do? Do we give them money? Food? Old furniture? I’ve never been sure what to do.

City Net takes a holistic approach to homelessness. They give people a hand up, not just a hand out. They work with people to get them off the street, back into society and reunited with their family members. And they partner with churches, city governments and members of the community to make a difference.

So a big thank you to all of my clients. Thanks for helping to support a worthy charity doing great work in our cities.

You can learn more or donate directly to City Net on their website.

The 7 Keys to Marketing Genius Quick Start Marketing Plan

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1: Find Your Advantage

·         What is the unique competitive advantage of your product or service?  (The best way to determine this is by performing a SWOT analysis)

·         How can you meet the needs of the target audience better than the competition?

·         What is the positioning of your product or service? 

2: Define Your Purpose

·         What is the mission or purpose of your company? 

·         What goals do you want to accomplish with this particular product or service? 

·         How do these goals fulfill the mission of your company? 

·         How will you communicate this to the entire organization to make sure everyone is on the same page?

3:  Create an Image

·         Based on the competitive advantage, positioning, target audience and mission of the company what image best represents your product or service?

·         Do you need professional assistance in creating a logo and marketing communications materials? 

·         Is the look and feel of your marketing communications materials consistent and congruent?

4:  Implement Promotions

·         Which of these marketing communications do you plan on utilizing?

o   Advertising

o   Public Relations/Publicity

o   Sales Promotion

o   Personal Selling

o   Direct Marketing

o   Internet/Interactive

·         What marketing communications can you afford? 

·         What marketing communications make the most sense for your situation?

·         How can you achieve the greatest return on investment with the least amount of wasted exposure?

·         Are your marketing communications linked and integrated? How?

·         Are your marketing communications consistent and congruent? How?

5:  Build Relationships

·         How are you building relationships with customers?

·         Are you creating positive word of mouth?

·         Are you developing advocates for your product?

·         Where in the funnel do your promotions hit? 

·         How do your promotions push people down the funnel?

6:  Gain Feedback

·         How are you measuring results?

·         Have you implemented ways of gaining feedback from customers?

·         Have you implemented ways of gaining feedback from employees?

7:  Adjust to Changes

·         Are you making changes based on the feedback you have gained?

·         Has your market or target audience changed?

·         Do you need to revise any marketing messages to remain current?

·         Are you maintaining up to date and relevant information on the website?

·         Do you have an ongoing dialogue with current customers?


Want to learn more? Read the full book by Michael Daehn: The 7 Keys to Marketing Genius.

 

REVIEW: The McDonald's App Experience

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Order Ahead

or get back in line

I've been using the McDonald's App for about a year now. It is pretty slick and gives you some good discounts and acts as a punch card for items like coffee that give you a free drink. I usually open it on my way there to see what deals and coupons they have.

This week I opened it and saw a coupon for $3 off $10. Apparently, that deal was only good if you ordered ahead of time. So when I got to the window the lady said I needed to order ahead of time. I asked if I could order in the app since I was already in line. She said I would need to drive out and get back in line.

Hey, I get it, the idea of this deal is to get people to put in their payment info and use the app. What I recommend to McDonald's, however, is to let people like me who are regular customers and learning the new rules they are imposing to use the discount this time, and advise me to order ahead next time. Giving the cashier the ability to give me the discount would have made her job easier and me happier.

I did drive around again because I am a marketing geek and wanted to see how this whole thing would play out. I also knew I was going to write a blog post when I got home.

Is McDonald's going to read this and change their policy, probably not. I am writing this for you. When putting promotions into action, make sure you allow for some wiggle room and make sure your employees can make good decisions at the moment to help the customer.

The name of the game these days is customer experience, also known as CX. Those businesses that are good at it will have a huge advantage over their competition.

HOW TO: Make Work Not Feel Like Work

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No matter how much you may love your job, there are always parts of it that are no fun. As my Dad used to say "They call it work for a reason."

But what if you could take those unpleasant parts of the job and make them fun? 

When I pledged my fraternity (Pi Kappa Phi) I had certain jobs I was required to do around the house as an associate member before I was initiated. The week before initiation my class gathered at the house nightly to perform tasks. These are tasks I have never enjoyed like cleaning the bathrooms, painting and removing a large tree from the front yard. 

But guess what - I had fun.

There is something about doing work with your friends that makes the duty seem light. We were laughing, telling jokes and removing a 50 foot tree and it's debris at the same time.

In the fraternity this is what we call Brotherhood. In the military it's called camraderie. In the Church it's called fellowship.

Leaders, you are responsible to build a team that gets along and respects each other and works toward a common purpose. Sprinkle in a good sense of humor and make the work fun.