Category Archives: SEO


What is Web Reputation?

What is Web Reputation and How to Manage It?

The Internet has magically changed the face of business. It has made it easy for customers to scroll anything they wanted to know about. You can get information about any company and any brand within few clicks. All you need to do is just type the name of the business you required to gather information about and relevant data will appear on your screen immediately. You can browse several social media sites, blogs, articles, and consumer forums to know the audience reviews. These reviews have a great impact on your business, they can either build or break your brand reputation.

Building web reputation is a critical mission to every business. To manage your reputation, you need to control all possible variables behind it. Here are the fundamentals that help you produce web reputation

  • Enhance your page ranking
  • Boost traffic to your business website
  • Help you create a buzz around the web on several other websites locally or nationally
  • Generate traffic to your business through organic links

Where this web reputation comes from?

If you create blogs, post in forums, upload to video sites, or comment on other’s blogs, you may get a web reputation. Upload an irrelevant image or just reply rudely to someone’s comment on your blog or website and become the topic of discussion among people and increase the rate of visitors to your website. Even you don’t require taking any step to acquire negative web reputation. As you don’t have control over the actions of other people and you can’t stop them to say anything. And from all these activities, the internet may store invalid information about your business you may have no idea about.

web reputation_pivot five stars review software_1

What are the fundamentals of managing web reputation?

  1. Interpreting already published positive & negative exposure

Analyze every aspect of the data related to your business which is negative, positive, or inconsistent. Know your competition and analyze what to do to reach your goals.

  1. Formulating your brand image and its nature

This is clear that to reach any business goal you need to have a solid marketing plan. To satisfy your visitors, make sure the content available on your website contains:

  • More media including images, videos, etc
  • Friendly to all devices either computer or mobile phones
  1. Maintenance and implementation of the available content

Once your strategy or content is ready, you need to analyze its maintenance. Proceed this success cycle with regular as well as fresh content. Start blogging, it will help your business explore and reach more and more audience consistently. Also, pay attention to the idea you are using to promote your business on the search engine. Ensure that you’re using a well-planned strategy for constant implementation.

Web reputation is the key necessity and it will be created whether you want it or not. There are so many web reputation management strategies to remove or prevent negative content about your business from displaying the first page of the search engine results. Here are the advantages of using web reputation management services:

  • Create positive brand image
  • Effective monitoring
  • Create catchy and solid content strategy

Web reputation is a great part of SEO. For effective web reputation, it is crucial one should have the right plan or tactics to achieve goals successfully.


What is Digital Reputation Management?

Know More about Digital Reputation Management

Nowadays, there is no single company in the industry who doesn’t paying attention to build and manage public identity. Digital reputation management is playing the key role to help you in maintaining the image of your brand over the web. This is also known as online reputation management. Let’s discuss in detail:

What is digital reputation management?

Generally, digital reputation management deal with all facts related to the brand of your business in the digital community.  Everything from forums to search engines, social networking sites, news sites, blogs comes under this community. This will help you in controlling the results come when the current and potential users Google your company name.

With the help of digital reputation management, you can prevent, end, and fix PR disasters and can also protect and promote your brand more effectively. The platforms to check the online reputation of your business are:

  • Wikipedia
  • Google search
  • Google autocomplete
  • Yelp, Google reviews, and several other review websites

Digital reputation management helps your viewers to find only the positive information about your company easily while diminishes all the negative information or content from the web which can distract your customers. In the end, your website gets a great digital reputation. Whenever people search your brand name they are going to find only the positive content.

digital reputation management_pivot five stars review software_3

Digital reputation management concept:

  1. Build your presence online
  • Create a strong digital image, maintain your Google search results, and make a well-defined space for your business
  • Build an integrated communication strategy to achieve your goals
  • Leverage media coverage, websites, social media, profiles, and optimized content to maintain your outlook digitally
  1. Enhance your digital outreach
  • Help you determine your identity and how partners, employees, and investors see you online
  • Help in creating targeted content and distribute it over several websites to promote and boost your company and objectives clearly
  1. Protect your digital reputation
  • Prepare plan for digital crisis with a great content strategy
  • Remove negative content from the search engine results
  • Manage SEO dynamically to counter threats

digital reputation management_pivot five stars review software_2

How digital reputation management helps you get positive reviews?

Before purchasing anything from your website, people search online reviews about your website to ensure you’ve positive and strong digital reputation. They analyze all the reviews coming from different parts of the industry before they feel confident with your business. Negative reviews about your site lower your business reputation and also drop the success rate of your business. Make sure that there is positive information available on online reviews sites about your business. Create an effective profile for sites your business is not on and remove all negative information and build a great image confidentially.

A successful digital reputation management must be multifaceted which consists several elements of search engine optimization, social media, paid and earned media. Before you start utilizing them, you need to understand how they can help you with your company digital reputation. Remember it building digital reputation doesn’t take much time than repairing a negative digital reputation. So before taking any step, understand the whole concept and then make a smart decision to boost your brand in the market.

Now you’re just one step away from creating a bulletproof digital reputation for your business. Use digital reputation management effectively and chase your goals successfully!


What Makes Brand Awareness Essential To Your Business

What Makes Brand Awareness Essential To Your Business

Brand awareness can be one of the most essential components of your business in order to succeed.  It is one of the most difficult marketing metrics to define.  But what does it really mean by the term “brand awareness”? How are we to determine if the market you are dealing with are the right people that needed such brand awareness? And, most significantly, what makes brand awareness essential part of your marketing plan?  What is the best way to measure the impact of the various marketing initiatives you are promoting with in terms of improving your brand awareness?

The above were just some of the most complex questions that surround brand awareness.  But answering them need not be as complex as it may seem.    One of the best ways to discover brand awareness was by conducting regular, well-designed brand awareness surveys you can keep track on how efficient your marketing campaigns really are.

So, what about brand awareness surveys anyway?

Brand awareness generally refers to the intensity that a patron, buyer or consumer is familiar about the existence and availability of a product or service.  Normally expressed as a percentage of the target market, brand awareness is the prime objective of every brand entry and introduction to the market.  We recommend using a review and survey software such as the following from Pivot. When done right, brand awareness survey can help you bring out the following measures:

Components of Brand Awareness

Brand Recall.  Can help your customer spontaneously recall your brand, or a competitor?

Brand Recognition.  When presented with a list of brands, does your audience recognize your brand as a credible option?

Brand Identity.  Reveals the shape of the brand your marketing team have created for you. Brand identity is where the success of the efforts put in place by your marketing team is being measured.

Brand Image.  Represents how your brand was perceived by your customers. Tracking disparities between brand identity and brand image can reveal gaps and leverage of your marketing efforts.

Brand Trust.  Measure the confidence level of your customers to your brand.  In this age of data breaches, tracking the levels of trust on your brand trust plays a major role. If your brand does not have that confidence level, you might find it difficult retaining customers.

Brand Loyalty.  Measures how your loyal customers can possibly become your brand evangelists.  By consistently tracking your customers’ loyalty level you will be able to determine the frequency of their levels of transformation.

Customer Profile.  Changes in your core customer base may be able to give you signals for a pivot revision and act upon your brand, your marketing campaign or both if ever necessary.

When you conduct surveys from your customers about your brand, you are trying to gain insight into some very specific areas of knowledge and associations about their relationship with your brand. This means you’ve got to be very direct about your chosen questions in order to avoid leading respondents to offering unnecessary misleading that may later become useless information.

Measuring Brand Awareness

Just how do you measure the efficiency of your brand awareness in ensuring consumers recognition of your brand?  There are several techniques in measuring brand awareness.  Below are just some of the most popular ways how you can harness the potentials of brand awareness.

Maintaining brand awareness is an important aspect in marketing your business. It is very helpful to analyze the perceptions your target audience has towards your product packaging, marketing & advertising, products, services, and messages sent through various channels. Inviting consumers to provide feedback and maintaining a constant presence in your target markets is essential to the brand.

  1. Brand awareness through online surveys.

If you are looking for a method that is effective in getting quick response rate at less the fraction of the cost, conducting brand awareness using online surveys is the best viable solution.  Brand recognition surveys also can also give you accurate and in-depth analysis as well as consumer perceptions, brand strengths and weaknesses and other competitive information in order to launch your brand.  Some survey packages can be as creative that they even have the features to include images like logos and videos in open-ended questions asking respondents in helping them name or recall the brands in their mind.

  1. Brand awareness using website traffic.

If done using the right places, website traffic metrics may be able to reveal insights about how your brand is being recognized and known to your market.  By monitoring how analytical tracks of your website, it can gain and lead you in indicating changes and how your campaigns perform and resonate awareness of your brand.   One important indicator of website traffic are the spikes in referral traffic that can show how content in your website is making a mark showing metrics on the most traffic drawn to your website and which websites will be your future targets in increasing your brand awareness.

  1. Brand awareness using search volume data.

Making consumers recall your brand is the main challenge of every marketing plan.  Understanding how data searching is properly done is one of the essences of the game.   Tracking keywords greatly associated with your brand is a very efficient way.  Monitoring changes in the volume of searches associated with your brand was a highly useful strategy in establishing brand awareness of your brand. Use Google Adwords Keyword Planner and Google Trends to check the volume of searches for your brand name, and to track it over time to see if search volumes are increasing. You must know how to harness and maximize the potentials of useful tools like Google Adwords Keyword Planner and Google Trends since online data may not be that simple and specific if you are talking about volumes of data.

  1. Brand awareness through social listening.

Social listening is one of the most efficient tools for developing awareness of your brand.  Through the many different kinds of communications across the internet, organic conversations sure carry the most potent kind of data useful especially if you are establishing awareness of your brand.

Let’s start building up your brand!

The above insights are just some of the many things that make brand awareness an essential part of your marketing plan.  Once you’ve learned to harness the advantage of how consumers are able to recall your brand without aiding assistance, then you can fully say that your brand is on top of their mind. Brand awareness is, therefore, a vital metric to monitor, especially if your market is that crowded and extremely competitive.

Ready to start building awareness for your brand?

Have you had added insights based on the above?  We’ll be delighted to accommodate them on the comments portion below. This article was originally posted by Pivot here.


SEO and Brand Awareness

SEO & Brand Awareness:  To be Found or Not to Be Found?

Now more than ever getting your business found locally online is critical to your success. The new generation mobile devices and new location sensing technology enable people to find exactly what they are looking for within a specific area. If you have what these searchers want, and you are visible in online searches you can acquire every new customers and do business easier than ever before.

If you are a business owner and you rely on people contacting you to your area or coming to your location, customers who have access to the internet using a smartphone or any device using web browsers can do a Google search for your brand while you are at you tend your business. You need not necessarily show up in front of them and do the brand offering. All you need is to post information about your brand and it will be visible for them to read on and help them recall about your business.

Gone are the days when tons of sheets of advertising flyers had to be printed out and pasted on every corner and space of every street and roads.

By the way, if you are still using a mobile phone that DOES NOT have the features to browse the web, or a GPS mapping features its high time you upgrade and get with the times. You ARE simply missing out BIG!

The goal of SEO is to increase your business’ visibility to target your audience, but SEO takes targeting even further. By focusing on customers and prospects, SEO can drive traffic to your websites much more than physical bricks and mortar locations. Almost every type of establishments can benefit from SEO.

An effective SEO campaign uses a combination of geo-targeted optimization and content marketing, business listings, back links, and user-generated reviews as well as testimonials and citations.

How To Optimize Your Website with SEO

Traditional SEO requires a few specific elements such as the following.

Your Business Details and Contact Information – This are the information search engines, listings, directories, and customers often look for especially during their initial search of a business website. Business details include its physical address and phone number, operating hours listed on the page of its website.

Hyper Local Keywords – Keywords and phrases containing your business location should appear in the Title tags, META descriptions, and web content. Simply targeting a location may not be enough to drive leads to your business. Going hyper local by targeting even more specific communities particularly within your locality can help you get more customers through your doors on and offline. Your SEO team or business reputation manager may be able to help you analyze where website traffic to your website is coming from and use that data to plan better geo-targeted keywords.

Targeting Markets with Content – Content marketing campaigns requires a certain amount of creativity and quality for any of your SEO campaign, but there must be a stronger emphasis on calls to action, influence marketing, and relevant topics to your kind of business and location.

Featured Topics – Your writers must create content based on what’s relevant to your business, your audience and even your location. Writing about trends that are related to your industry is always a good technique to establish your authority and information resource.

Creating Brand Advocacy – Your writers don’t just sell or announce your brand – they must encourage customer loyalty and ripple your brand voice. Customers who come to love your brand should promote them through word of mouth by sharing your content on social media.

Marking Your Business Identity – Creating and marking your brand and business identity online starts with the right content attribution. Adding Google+ authorship as well as marking-up snippets to the content on Google by displaying the author’s name and image like the example below  greatly help in your website’s visibility information in Google search results.


Your campaign team or reputation manager can also benefit on different social media services across the net. These listings and pages must be kept fresh and regularly updated for greater visibility reach. Manage other content that goes onto the website such as reviews, blog posts, press releases, surveys, industry information, trivia, announcements and anything your target audience may find useful or entertaining.  You can also add links to other social networks in your campaign if they are suitable for your brand and audience.

Building Quality Citations – Quality backlinks is a vital aspect of any SEO strategy, but citations are even more important in optimizing your page. Citations or brand mentions made by your customers as well as other businesses on third-party websites help in key ranking factors of your brand’s search visibility. Some of the most influential and effective types of citations include the following:

Social or Blog Citations – Mentions encouraging about your brand and influences talking about you in their blogs and social media accounts is always a good way to acquire citations.

Business Listings and Reviews– Listing your brand on business directories, local networks, and review sites are citation-drivers. Managing these kinds of listings and getting more your customers to post amicable and positive reviews of your business can surely add more citations.

Guest Posts and Magazine Publications– Being able to get other people to write about your business in an online magazine or own articles and press releases can highly increase your exposure and establish your brand leverage in your niche. Unique content beyond what your business and brand can get you viral and leave that significant mark on the minds of your audience.

Providing great service and top quality products is not the only way to make customers write positive reviews. Integrating links to your pages and business listings in your website as well as publishing press releases and engaging customers through online content might also get them to share their thoughts and comments.

Now that you understand a little about SEO and marketing your brand with targeted SEO and marketing services, it is now up to you to get it all done.   Let us help you more by bringing on those thoughts in your mind right now through our comments section below.  We’ll be delighted to hear  you out and get in touch.


7 Ways To Build Your Brand Authority

Building brand awareness is a common challenge for every business. You might find it intimidating and confusing due to the many different types of advertising media to choose from and put your hopes for.   Finding what makes your business memorable is sometimes not that simple and easy.  So, how much more if you want to stand out from the rest?

Presented below are 7 ways on how to help increase brand awareness in the industry.

  1. Deliver Awesome Customer Service.

Being a legend is not as easy as it sounds. It may take more than just a smiling face and a turn of the head to truly bring it. There is simply plenty of service from clueless marketers that just hand on their services by a mere sweet smile and nothing else. An excellent customer service starts with a team that are just as passionate as you are about your business.

Legendary customer service is one that is above and beyond the average. Legendary service provides consistently prompt, knowledgeable and professional solutions.  As time goes by, your business reputation will somehow attach to your brand.  Whether those connotations are the effect of positive or negative customer service related actions, they will automatically stick and be associated with your brand an assumed in the minds of the consumers.  So, it goes by saying that your customer service really matters. What will your brand be remembered for?

7 ways to help your brand gain authority in your industry from pivot five stars review software

  1. Use your empowered story as part of your branding.

Everyone likes to remember a good story. In order to make a great mark in your industry, your brand should be associated with a story that empowers customers. Consumers love to recall your brand and how they help make their lives easier. Your story should show what drives your business, your passions and inspirations that keep your business getting better and thriving.  It must present the issue or challenge that prompted your brand to become a solution to the problem. Great brands start with a great story. Learn how to share this well with your customers.

  1. Keep your brand “Top of Mind Awareness”.

Remember that there is a plethora of advertising media they can choose from, it can sometimes be difficult for customers to make a deciding choice. Online advertising has become so popular that other traditional forms of media are in a lot of haste just trying to figure out how to keep their customers from shifting to other brands. But advertising can be quite effective even with a smaller budget.  All it takes, is to know what can make your brand almost like part of their instinct.

Other than Pay-Per-Click (PPC) advertising,  most popular advertising flicks are free on social networks. Although PPC advertising can also be seen on the Google Search Engine results page it can be successful in generating more meaningful leads resulting in a higher conversion rate.

Another popular form of online advertising is when you purchase banner ad space which delivers the amount of impressions promised. Impressions are delivered upon visit to your advertiser’s site. Impressions are often good for brand building but not for generating leads which are more geared towards establishing business relationships.

  1. Be Valuable by Being A Credible Resource

Having all that credibility really pays!  By becoming a source authority where one can gain benefits especially professional advice and knowledge. If you can be that reliable in being the source of valuable information and knowledge, you are surely guaranteed to generate solid leads, gain prospects and attain that authority in the industry.

A simple yet effective way is to offer free seminars that can benefit your audience with valuable skills they can successfully use to better their lives.  If you lack the budget to rent a space and offer freebies to a herd of people, don’t underestimate the wonders brought by online videos and webinars. But never hesitate to invest in high quality equipment or hire professionals to help you.  The rewards can be far greater in the future.

  1. Provide usable information.

Email campaigns can be that helpful and beneficial to your clients but don’t make the mistake of grandstanding around your brand.  Engaging your recipients can best be achieved using topics of discussion that are short yet succinct.  It is best to provide value rather than campaign fanfares.  It is best to offer your recipients with industry-centered articles that would be of most benefit to them .

Reinforce on valid and interesting facts on your campaign.  Newsletters on valuable tips that are practical, informative and fun are just some of those readings that are worth keeping on emails and will offer possibilities of being forwarded, shared and passed on.

  1. Post Articles & Blog

Regular content posting on social media, websites and blogs was an effective way to be visible and rank higher online. It is best to establish your authority over the rest by shining and producing relevant content that resounds with your readers. Some of the best brands in the world are the most respected for the content and information they produce.

7 ways to help your brand gain authority in your industry

  1. Design a logo and brand slogan that lingers to the memory.

These corporations have reached a prominent status through diligence. They don’t have to work at growing their company anymore because they already have a solid customer base. All of their marketing efforts are geared towards brand building. But they didn’t reach their recognizable status overnight. It took time, patience, aggressive marketing campaigns and strategies, large investments and of course….creativity.

The creativity and originality of a logo provides a visual connection for your customers and prospects to help them recall your business when they need your services. A logo provides your company with a voice and a personality.

There have been times where I could not remember the name of the business, but through an online search I was able to find them once again because they had a logo that was memorable. I feel it is a wise investment to utilize professional graphic designers that can create and give voice to your business’ personality with a single pictorial symbol.

Gain your brand authority by being creative!

Establishing your own brand awareness doesn’t have to be hard work. Creativity plays a great role in your approach.  In a world full of challenging and stand out advertisements, the more easily recognizable you are the better your brand can easily perform.

References: Original Post at Pivot


5 ways to boost your social media

Experts noted, social media psychology plays a major role in making online marketing into a somewhat state of euphoria changing and making better marketers and improve people’s lives for the better.  Here are 5 killer ideas on how social media can excite your customers and make your brand campaign stays in the hearts of your customers.  
  1. Explore the Invisible.   The first contact or Zero Moment of Truth (ZMOT) with customers is not necessarily the beginning of the buy cycle as most business owners mistakenly assume. With most businesses, the buy cycle begins during the research phase of the  target market where one blindly seeks out the bullseye on the vast market and trys to discover what customers really want about your brand.  The experience can somewhat be compared as ‘looking for a needle from a haystack’ but still you’re out there exploring and discovering what seems to be an invisible interest by customers.  In order to do this, you need to go on a quest for an in-depth understanding of the actual experiences taken by your target market during their ‘buying’ journey.
5 killer ways social media can excite your customers pivot five stars review software
  1. Treat your customers as buyers. It is best to go in the direction thinking that ALL customers in the social economy are buyers including those who have just recently purchased your brand. In the social economy the following are considered as the four primary types of customers:
  • Price buyers. These are customers who are most keen on buying brands only at the least possible price. They seldom worry about brand value, variation or relationships.
  • Relationship buyers. These customers valued trust and are more about building dependable relationships with their suppliers. These customers normally expect suppliers to care for them.
  • Value buyers. These customers are after the value of their interaction and expect suppliers to provide the most value in their engagement.
  • Poker player buyers. These customers expect to get high value at the least price of what they can get from a relationship.
  1. Buyers go for value rather than hubris. Most brand campaigns focus on spins and sales talk that almost camouflage their entire brand package.  Bear in mind that buyers buy resulting outcomes not hubris.  You must be able to understand the target reason behind what the buyer is looking for and wrap your brand campaign around how you will be going to deliver this to your customers every time.  Develop communications that are outcome oriented and not just mere propaganda.  Remember that value extends beyond what is being purchased and its significance may differ in perspective to different type of buyers.  Although that definition varies over time.
  1. Align your focus on the underlying results. You must develop processes that engage how buyers want to engage with your brand throughout the life of your engagement with integration defining company processes, competencies and performance growth.  You therefore need to streamline every role in sync that enable buyers benefit from each delivered role.
  1. Empower your Sales & Marketing as a single team. Too many processes and protocols will only lead your buyers to disenchant and disengage.  In many instances, buyers appreciate more the consistency of experience and organization of their engagement other than the brand itself. Simplifying the process and department protocols measure up on enabling, advocating and building enduring relationships with them.  As buyer evangelists develop, it is understandable that value expectations and processes alignment may change over time.
5 killer ways social media can excite your customers pivot five stars review software for business owners
It’s so fascinating to learn about the psychology behind social media.  But even more fascinating is how the social media channels keep on evolving and surprising every customer with their constant engagement making brand marketing equally exciting and euphoric.   We’d love to hear your take from these insights. Let us know by sharing in the comments!ml


70 Questions To Ask Before Buying a Franchise


Buying a franchise can be one of the biggest decision you make in the next 10-20 years! Trust me when I say that you want to do your due diligence when selecting a franchise because this is your life and the business you will be married to for the next decade or longer, depending on your franchise agreements. I want you to make money and have a successful and flourishing business that will change your life in every way for the better. I want you to call me and thank me for helping you select a franchise that has transformed your life. But its not that easy.

I know what you might be thinking. When you own a franchise you can make millions, right? Not exactly. There is one part of the equation that makes a franchise win awards and break sales records. I would be lying if I did not tell you this. The major part of the equation is YOU! You determine how far ultimately you can take the franchise.

Have you ever thought about what makes a great question to ask your potential franchisor or existing franchise owners? Well to be honest, neither have I but I gather that a great question draws out a great answer. I hope to do the same for you when you are gathering questions and answers about which franchise you may want to purchase. I want you to ask great questions so that you can draw out any potentially dangerous red flags with buying a franchise.

Here’s my list of questions that I deem worthwhile to ask any intelligent franchise owner. Please take notice that this is a list of questions that I would personally use for asking franchise owners about their franchise. Some of these questions may seem humorous to you and rightly so. They are a combination of questions designed to help you better know the franchisee and his/her franchise. One thing I look for is trying to place the owners in a personality profile to determine their style and to see if it aligns with my goals.

Franchise Location:

Franchise Owner:

Contact Info:


1.) How long have you owned your franchise?

2.) Is your franchise profitable?

3.) How long did it take to reach your cash flow break even point?

4.) Were opening costs consistent with the original projections?

5.) What are your approximate earnings and are they in line with your expectations for the year?

6.) How many Unit’s did you purchase (Estimate) (Compare Projections/Earnings)

(Please note that you could be buying a territory that is broke down differently. Some go by State, City, Zip Codes, USPS SFDU list et….)

7.) Did your franchisor adequately estimate the amount of operating cash that you needed?

8.) Was the training your franchisor provided thorough and did it sufficiently prepare you?

9.) What was your background prior to buying your franchise?

10.) Are you satisfied with the franchisor’s support?

11.) Are you satisfied with the products and service?

12.) Is the operations manual clear, up-to-date and adequate?

13.) How did you handle your shipping and receiving?
14.) Are you satisfied with the marketing assistance given?

15.) Was the initial training and ongoing support sufficient?

16.) Is the franchisor fair and friendly to work with? How much stress is there in producing? Does the franchisor listen and help you with your concerns?

17.) Have any franchisees had disputes with the franchisor? If so, what was their nature? Were they resolved fairly?

18.) Do you know of any disputes with competitors?

19.) Who are the major competitors?

20.) What is the company’s biggest competitive advantage?

21.) What is the company’s biggest competitive disadvantage?

22.) What are the major hurdles/obstacle you had to overcome to be successful?

23.) If you could start all over, would you buy this franchise again? (Would they choose the franchise that they currently own, or would they have chosen something else in the price range of this franchisee?)

24.) What were the average calls within the first 6 months?

25.) What are your current calls?

26.) What forms of marketing are you currently involved in?

27.) What percentage of your gross income are you spending on marketing?

28.) What are you biggest returns on your marketing spend? Do you have percentages?

29.) If you were required to do a build out what were your costs?

30.) How long is your franchise agreement?

31.) Do you know the terms for renewal?

32.) Do you know what your renewal fees are?

33.) Do you plan on renewing your franchise? Why or why not? Please explain.

34.) What do you enjoy most about running this franchise?

35.) What do you enjoy the least about running this franchise?

36.) Are the systems that are in place by the franchisor current and up to date?

37.) Would you say your franchisor is behind or ahead of the technology curve?

38.) What is your franchisor doing to make you stand out above the competition?

39.) Do you trust your franchisor?

40.) Have they ever done anything to break your trust? Have they ever done anything that did not seem fair or honest to your franchise?

41.) Do you have an exclusivity agreement?

42.) Has your franchisor ever tried to open their own franchise location or doing business behind your franchise?

43.) Are you able to take a healthy vacation without attending to your franchise?

44.) How long has it been since you have taken a vacation?

45.) Does your franchise operate without you present?

46.) What are your long term goals with this franchise?

47.) If you are married, how has this franchise affected your marriage? For better or for worse?

48.) How many franchise locations do you own?

49.) How were you able to achieve those results with multiple franchise locations?

50.) If you could boil it down to one single point what would be the single most important factor for your success in this franchise?

51.) How much franchise debt are you in?

52.) What do your plans look like to pay off that debt? What are your goals?

53.) What is the biggest compliment your customer pay you and your team?

54.) What is the biggest complaint you hear about?

55.) How hard is it in your industry to find good employees?

56.) What sources do you use to find them and hire them?

57.) How long does it take you to find and hire a new employee?

58.) How long does it take to fully train them?

59.) Are these human resource systems established by the franchisor or did you create them?

60.) Does the franchise have a standard handbook to modify and have an attorney review/edit based on your state?

61.) On a scale from 1 to 10 how would you rate the human resource portion of your franchise? In other words does the franchisor really help you with employees or not?

62.) Does the franchisor have a recommended payroll system or do they have their own?

63.) Does the franchisor help with an established paid vacations, paid leave, sick days, matching retirement, health, dental, vision benefits policies for employees?

64.) If they do please explain in detail?

65.) Does the franchisor allow you to hire from temp agencies?

66.) Would hiring from a temp agency help you gather more qualified candidates or short term help?

67.) How involved is your franchisor with the success of your franchise location?

68.) Do they aid with ongoing support and training?

69.) Is there an employee training center available to send new hires or do you train them?

70.) What’s the best advice you would give someone considering this franchise?


How To Make A Monthly SEO Plan

how to build a monthly seo plan

Building a Monthly SEO Action Plan 101


In this post we are going to discuss how to build a simple monthly SEO plan for your business. We are going to study a video produced by Seomoz and is available on Udemy that covers some of the basic tactics to creating a monthly SEO action plan that will contribute to the success of your business. Major props to SeoMoz for creating this simple and intuitive video on the nuts and bolts of SEO plans. No matter what category of business you are in there is some take away from this for everyone.

Lets dive in and please note that I have included the link to the video here in case some of you would like to watch that as well. I have included some of my own thoughts and interpretation of the content that is from the video. For a quick recap your can read the outline below. This is an outline with additional notes from the video.


Step 1: Site Diagnostics

You will want to run site diagnostics preferable on a weekly basis if your schedule will allow. The things you will want to look for are errors on your site. More specifically 404s, blocked by robot.txts, and 302s. This should be an easy routine once you have worked out all the kinks on your site and running these checks will consume less of your time as you work out more of the errors on your site. There are alot of tools out there for this and many that are free. Later on I will build a blog post on all the free tools that are out there for SEO experts to use. The key is checking routinely so that you can fix the problems before they hit the SERPS.


Step 2:  Metrics & Measurements

We all know how important measuring progress is. There’s a saying that you can only improve what you measure. I recommend to measure your sites progress weekly. Here are the following areas that are discussed that should be measured:

-Visits from Search Engines: Google, Yahoo, Bing etc…

-Traffic from pages and which pages?

-What keywords are driving the traffic to these pages?

-What are the rankings of these keywords?

-Compare these stats to following months (If your business is seasonal then compare these to the previous months that time last year)

In my business’s I measure daily, weekly, and monthly to compare to previous months but I also compare to previous years (same months timeframe) to get our current growth. This is a good habit to get into especially if you run a local service type business where your business is mainly based off consumer trends, buying patterns, and seasonality.

Competitor SEO & SEM Data

Part of your measuring data should also be for tracking your competitors and how they are doing, what they are ranking for in terms of keywords. If you are noticing increased traffic where is that coming from? What links are they building? What links are driving traffic to their site etc…You will gain a lot of knowledge using some great SEO competitor tracking tools. One of the features I really like to look at is their Google PPC Ad Spend. I like to operate my business’s on PPC advertising and I also recommend for other industry’s. With Pivot I mainly go for organic search and SEO.

If you know how to use Search Engine Marketing for your business then you will find knowing what your competitors are doing for SEM PPC will be invaluable. Follow there trends for what keywords they are spending money on. Obviously if they have been around for awhile and are spending money on certain keywords then they must be converting. Of course if you have a terrible looking website and your call to actions are not visible then you will be wasting your time doing this. Always measure the size of your competition and try to make a way for your business to stand out. Having a quality landing page build for PPC will funnel more leads.


Step 3: Keyword & Content Opportunities

You will want to include in your weekly or monthly plan to look for new keywords for your business or organization to rank for. Depending on you industry the keywords are different for everyone, and not every keyword will produce the results you are hoping for. Take you list of keywords and compare to the opportunities that are out there. You can also check and compare your competitor keywords to what you are ranking for. You may find new opportunities in that research.

Once you have your keyword target words and have done your research then you can start to work on producing content around that. Whatever your strategy is you will want to incorporate those keywords into the strategy. Building new pages centered around that content is one good method of doing this.


Step 4: Social, PR & Link Building Strategies

You will want to figure out the people you need to engage in your industry and how to reach them. You might find these people in the blogging world, twitter, facebook, internally in your industry, forums, or PR websites and organizations.

Once you locate the best places for where you can find your customers you will want to work on standing out. You defiantly do not want to blend in with the rest of the crowd on those sites so put some thought into what makes you different! You want to get noticed and you want to stand out. See what works in other places and what works for other owners.

If you work in a larger organization you will always want to be aware of what other initiatives are being done in your company so that you can all be on the same page. Other people might not be thinking about the keywords to target, link building, pr initiatives etc…Get everyone on the same page and make your end goals very very clear. Once you do this you will be well on your way to improving your sites visibility! Click here for more on SEO and SEM services.



To Your Success!

Joshua Christensen

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