8 Mistakes Companies Make When Launching a New Website
Your site has no redirects- In today's day and age, most established companies already have a website. What this means is that most of today's new website launches are actually re-launches or redesigns of the old site. In fact, here at Foremost Media, over 90% of the sites we build are actually rebuilds from the ground up of existing websites. Re-launching a new website has some unique challenges, especially if the site is well established. One of the most overlooked and critical things inexperienced webmasters do when re-launching or re-designing a site is skip the site redirects. Site redirects, or more specifically page redirects, are a way to send both search engines and site visitors to a different or new webpage from the one they originally requested.
So why is a site redirect important to a site re-launch? If your site is well established and you change page names or page structure, you will need ...
Posted in: Web Development by Jon Ballard on September 4, 2014
The Top 4 Myths in Marketing Automation
Marketing automation is a powerful, but often misunderstood tool. The confusion is generally the fault of software companies with large budgets and influential bloggers who are writing about something they lack experience with, just to gain attention. Here are four of the more common marketing automation myths we have encountered.
1. The software does all of the work
Just because it is called marketing automation, does not mean it happens all by itself. The system still requires a skilled marketer behind the wheel effectively developing the strategy. The system is merely a tool the marketer can use for efficiently accomplishing their goals of lead generation and nurturing. The data and insight provided by the system allows companies to optimize their processes on an ongoing basis. This requires someone who is analytical enough to sift through the data and creative enough to develop a plan of action based on the information.
2. It is only for email marketing
Posted in: Marketing Automation by Jon Ballard on September 2, 2014
Are You Marketing Effectively Throughout The Buying Process?
The goal of inbound marketing is to attract your ideal visitors and ultimately convert them into delighted customers.
It is imperative that you create buyer personas to make sure you are not only attracting qualified leads, but that you are also creating content that engages them. In order to move them from leads to customers, you need a thorough understanding of the buying process.
There are five stages to the buying process, and as inbound marketers, we need to have a deep understanding of each stage. The relevancy of the content to the buyer persona is largely dependent on what stage they are currently at in the buying process. Understanding what stage they are in, will allow us to move them along in the buying process and eventually convert them into customers.
The buying process is not anything new. John Dewey first introduced the concept in 1910. The stages are as follows:
1. Problem/Need Recognition
2. Information Search
Posted in: Inbound Marketing by Jon Ballard on August 13, 2014
DNN Web Hosting Comparison: White Paper
We are frequently asked what makes our hosting different from other hosting companies like GoDaddy. Why are the hosting costs different? Why should you choose Foremost Media over the others?
Foremost Media hosts our sites in a Tier 4 data center. Mainstream hosting providers, like GoDaddy, host in a Tier 3 data center.
Foremost Media's primary data center is a Tier 4 data center located near Omaha, Nebraska. This facility is free from natural disasters, such as floods, hurricanes, earthquakes, and power shortages that plague other data centers throughout the world. Our secondary sites include a Tier 4 facility in the UK and one in Florida. Each of these data centers feature:
Carrier Access -Four local SONET fibers provide redundant carrier/neutral fiber access (AT&T, Level 3, Qwest, and COX)
Internet Access-Route Science manages redundant, Tier 1 internet bandwidth with fully redundant, Carrier-class Cisco core routing and switching
Network Monitoring-SNMP management tools monitor all critical infrastructure components
Fiber -Four fiber ...
Posted in: Website Hosting by Aaron Jach on July 28, 2014
Don’t Waste Your Money on Marketing Automation Software
Marketing automation is a powerful tool that when used properly can take your marketing to the next level by improving all of your online marketing efforts. The primary reason why many organizations are unable to see a dramatic increase their profitability and higher conversion rates with a marketing automation system is they lack the necessary internal resources to operate the system in its full capacity.
Essentially, marketing automation is technology that allows you to more effectively utilize multiple marketing channels and automate repetitive tasks in order to convert visitors into leads and nurture them through the buying process. This allows the sales department to focus on leads that have already been qualified and are currently in the purchasing stage of the buying process.
The majority of B2B buying processes are complex. Customers are not making a purchase decision upon their initial interaction with an organization. Instead, they are self-educating themselves by researching and comparing options to ...
Posted in: Marketing Automation by Jon Ballard on July 7, 2014
Are You Getting The Most From Your Pinterest Account?
Pinterest is quickly becoming more and more popular for businesses. If your business is on Pinterest make sure that you are getting the most out of your efforts. When users look at Pins on Pinterest they can click on the image and be taken to a link. Too many businesses are making the mistake of sending these users to a link with nothing more than that image (ex. goo.gl/aQlPq6).
If you are posting company photos to your Pinterest page, make sure that you are linking them to your website to get the most website traffic out of your social media efforts. Here’s how:
Log in to your Pinterest account.
Click on your profile name in the upper right-hand corner.
Click on your company/profile name in the top corner.
Select the board that you want to edit a pin for.
Hover over the pin that you want to edit. Click on the pencil that appears in the upper right-hand corner of ...
Posted in: Social Media by Online Marketing Team on May 5, 2014
B2B Tips For Twitter
In order to have a legitimate online presence, you need to have a social media strategy in place. One of the most popular social platforms is Twitter. They are reported to have over 115 million users every month! How can you make sure your business is getting the most out of this monster social network?
For starters, schedule out Tweets, and do not be afraid to share control of the account. Assign a few employees to regularly post on Twitter. This gives your followers various perspectives, as well as guarantees your account to remain fresh and active.
Search for business phrases industry specific to you and join in on conversations. This is a great way to grow your brand and potentially join in on industry events as well. The more recognized your name, the more you are seen as an authority in your field.
Twitter is also a great place to learn about your customers. Look for ...
Posted in: News by Aaron Jach on May 2, 2014
Why Most SEO's Are Fake
Fake SEO - If you hear this from your vendor run away!
I have been an SEO for a long time. If there is one thing that is constant in this business is that it constantly changes. Google makes an average of 1.5 Algorithm changes each day with varying degrees of intensity. The most difficult thing about being an SEO is staying informed with the most up to date information and learning how to apply it. Most SEOs don't do this and are stuck with the same education they received years ago in search engine optimization, if they were ever educated at all.
To prove my point, here's an example of a spam email I received from an "SEO" Company:
As the Site operator of XXXXX I would like to invite you to exchange links with us.
The entire week we will conduct a unique link exchange that will focus on real links with real traffic from ...
Posted in: Search Engine Optimization by Jon Ballard on July 18, 2013
Foremost Media Now Offering Translation Services
JANESVILLE, WI - Companies interested in advancing their products or services into Spanish-speaking markets can go to a local firm for help.
Foremost Media Inc., a full-service web design and web optimization company, is now offering translation services to assist large and small companies who want to gain exposure and increase their reach into Latin American markets.
"There are language and graphic constraints if you just try and do a 'straight' translation from one language to another," explains Jon Ballard, chief executive officer of Foremost.
With automated translation services offered by the major search engines, it's easy for businesses to lose control of their message. "Recently we discovered that an automated translation service had turned a client's safety seal cap manufacturing business into a whale hunting company," Ballard says. "Unless you speak the language, you really have no idea what you are presenting to a foreign audience."
Foremost can make sure your website makes 'graphic' sense as well ...
Posted in: News by Tina Lenz-Mandt on March 7, 2013
Usa Datacenter Incident Report
Start time: February 22, 2013, 8:50 AM CST (GMT-6:00)
Conclusion: February 22, 2013, 10:05 AM CST (GMT-6:00)
Duration: ~75 minutes
Type: Regional, affecting multiple datacenters throughout the Midwest USA
This information has been provided by the regional service provider serving the affected datacenters.
Multiple regional datacenters throughout the Midwest US were temporarily unavailable, either partially or completely, to each other and to the internet. This included one of the Foremost Media datacenters in Nebraska. Internal servers and other hardware were not affected and neither data nor security were ever at risk.
A regional Core switch servicing the Midwest United States experienced a hardware failure. Due to the nature of the failure (concurrent supervisor card failure) the redundant hardware member did not immediately failover as designed.
The failed hardware was physically removed from the system and the redundant Core switch was rebooted, immediately restoring all connectivity. Spare hardware will be installed to return the Core switches to ...
Posted in: News by Jon Ballard on February 23, 2013
Social Media And Search Engine Optimization
One of the newest factors in search engine optimization is social media account usage. Google tracks how many people have referenced your business in the various social media platforms. They use this activity to help them determine how popular you are on the Web. It would makes sense that they would start to use this data to determine where you rank in the search engines. Now, how is it that you actually get people to mention your site on social media? Well, there are a lot of ways, but most often we find that you need to know what NOT to do.
DO NOT ADVERTISE. This is the biggest mistake most companies make. Inundating your prospects with "Buy This" and "Like This" messages no longer works. Most consumers are desensitized to this already. For maximum effectiveness ...
Posted in: Search Engine Optimization, Social Media by Online Marketing Team on August 31, 2012
Local Business SEO Package Unveiled
Every day, more and more people are putting away that big yellow phonebook and turning to local Internet searches in their hometown. According to a recent article published on EntireWeb.com, research has shown that somewhere in the neighborhood of 70% of households do some kind of Internet search for local products and services EVERY SINGLE DAY! What does this mean for your local business? It means you need to be in the right places when people are searching for your business.
Not only do you have to have a good position in local search results, you also need to have a good reputation. This is where Foremost Media's reputation monitoring tool can help you! Combining this tool with a local SEO package makes an unstoppable combination!
"It's a GOOD THING that you're a small business, because that means we can position you to compete against only those businesses within your area, not the national businesses ...
Posted in: Local SEO, Reputation Management by Online Marketing Team on April 13, 2011
Video SEO, Who Knew? (We Did.)
It's true. Video can be up to 53 times more likely to appear on the first page of a Google search than text (Forrester Research) but not just any video - it must be Search Engine Optimized video. Since everyone is on the SEO bandwagon, it's harder than ever to reach or keep high rankings no matter how aggressive your efforts.This is where SEO video may put you over the top.
Video SEO is the process of using SEO tools with your video and then submitting the SEO videos themselves (not just the pages where the videos reside) to the various search engines. Because there is so much less of it, and because only very little of all online video is properly submitted with SEO, there is a disproportionate bias towards properly submitted SEO video. Results can appear within a few short days.The fact is videos are taking over traditional searches.
Google is pushing video to ...
Posted in: General, Search Engine Optimization by Online Marketing Team on December 14, 2010
Facebook Unveiling "Deals" For Businesses
Facebook is in the beta testing stage of bringing what they call Facebook "Deals." It offers businesses the opportunity to rewards customers when they check in on Facebook, and this helps generate awareness, encourage in-store traffic and build customer loyalty. "Deals" connects businesses with people and helps them become an even larger part of their customers' conversations.
What does this mean for you and your business?
Deals gives you the power to acquire and retain customers, as well as market your business.
This is definitely something to get excited about in the near future for all local businesses! Keep an eye out for Foremost Media's Local Market Package INCLUDING Facebook "Deals!"
More Marketing Tips for Facebook:
B2B Marketing on Facebook
Proactively Manage Your Facebook Reviews
What are my next Steps?
SEO For Businesses Website Development Conversion Rate Optimization Marketing Automation Digital Success Stories
Posted in: Social Media by Online Marketing Team on December 9, 2010
Web Design: Part 1 Of 3 (A Series)
This is Part 1 of a three part series providing the best practices when designing a new site or giving a new 'look' to an older site. In our mini-series we will show you how valuable an on-line presence really is as you attract and communicate with more customers, expand into more markets, take more orders, reduce training expenses, and spend less time exchanging documents through the mail or with couriers. And these are only a few of ways we at Foremost Media can help your company take advantage of the Web. As this is a lengthy subject, with many variables to scrutinize, we hope you'll stay tuned for subsequent issues publicizing Part 2 and Part 3 in upcoming Foremost Media newsletters.
Web Design Part 1:
"Give them what they want, what they really, really want!"
A. Stay Focused
Every page of the site should be targeted to helping your customer find what they need in the absolute ...
Posted in: Web Development by Online Marketing Team on October 5, 2010
E-mail Marketing Goes "Social"
Marketing in a down economy takes forward thinking. Getting the most of your online marketing can be done by combining two known strategies, e-mail marketing and social media.
When e-mailing to your current customer base, you should promote your social media channels. As your Facebook page attracts more fans and people "like" your page these networks will help drive new subscribers to your e-mail list via your web site. Encouraging customers to follow your tweets or watch your YouTube channel will give you the same return.
We've outlined some easy guidelines to help bring your social media and email marketing efforts together.
I. Let people know you're out there
Your mass e-mail software should allow you to easily connect to your Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn accounts. You can even download appropriate logos allowing your readers to click and find you quickly while sending an offer to join your network. In fact, you can put these links in your ...
Posted in: Email Marketing, Social Media by Online Marketing Team on October 5, 2010
Using Online Videos Successfully
Quite possibly the biggest current online sensation is the use of videos. Viewing online videos for pleasure is entertaining, touching, inspiring, and fun. But videos can be quite effectively used for business purposes. Videos offer a more stimulating Web experience, adding motion and sound to an otherwise flat environment. When used effectively, online videos can be used to tell the story of the company and customers, explain products and services, and demonstrate products.
When videos are implemented well, they can boost site traffic and sales, and even lead to new business opportunities. In fact, the numbers are quite significant. Mashable.com, a social media blog, conducted internal research which revealed that adding video to a site can drive 36% more clicks, 20% more inbound calls, and more than double the time spent on the site. A Kelsey Group study discussed online videos with consumers who were asked what they did after viewing videos. 55% of the ...
Posted in: Social Media by Online Marketing Team on July 21, 2010
PlayStar Launches New Website
PlayStar Launches New Website
PlayStar, a leader in outdoor recreational products has announced the release of a newly designed website www.playstarinc.biz. The new .biz will allow consumers the opportunity to buy directly from PlayStar Inc. when a local retail outlet is not conveniently located. All three of PlayStar's products are available on the new website, which features residential play sets for kids, boat docks, and backyard storage buildings. PlayStar is the only manufacturer that allows you to choose a playsets that best fits your lifestyle, Build It Yourself, Ready to Assemble, and Factory Built. Over 40 different wooden swing sets are available along with a complete line of popular swingset components from swings and slides to climbers, rides, play set accessories, brackets and tarps. PlayStar's dock offering include the Original Floating Dock as well as the revolutionary Premium Dock System which weighs less than 170 lbs ...
Posted in: News by Online Marketing Team on June 15, 2009
Glimmers Of Hope In Janesville By Bob Bach
The Janesville area has the highest unemployment rate in Wisconsin; 13.5 percent. That's nearly triple what it was a year ago. The figure has been fueled by General Motors' decision to close its auto plant there. Some people appear to be leaving town as jobs evaporate, according to U-Haul Incorporated. Its records show that nearly 25 percent more people left Janesville than moved there during the first three months of 2009.
WUWM'S Bob Bach asked a few local businesses what they're noticing, and their observations about residents are not as glum.
Josh Rofburg is manager of South Side True Value Hardware in Janesville. The store isn't far from the sprawling GM plant, the longtime industrial goliath that now sits shuttered and silent. Rofburg says more than half his customers worked at the factory, or one of the satellite industries whose fortunes were linked to GM's. Rofburg says oftentimes former autoworkers rub elbows at his store, and ...
Posted in: News by Online Marketing Team on May 8, 2009
Local Search- Getting Found Online By People In Your Community
Every day more and more people are putting away that big yellow phonebook and turning to local internet searches to find goods or services in their own home town? According to a recent article published on entireweb.com research has shown that somewhere in neighborhood of 70% of households do some kinds of search for a local product or service on a daily basis.
Posted in: News by Online Marketing Team on April 22, 2009
Using Twitter To Promote Your Business
Tweet About Your Business On Twitter
Twitter is a tool for social interaction and microblogging which is quickly becoming a excellent resource to reach people quickly. If you haven't heard of Twitter by now, it is well worth the time to get educated. With celebrates like Oprah on twitter the soccer moms of the world are soon to follow. Several government agencies are even jumping on the Twitter bandwagon, using it as a platform to deliver time-sensitive information to the public.
"When a commuter train derailed Sept. 12, 2008, in Chatsworth, CA., killing dozens and injuring hundreds, the LAFD (Los Angeles Fire Department) tweeted several times to update the public about rescue operations. And citizens near a wildfire in Griffith Park in 2007 tweeted to the LAFD about wind direction and smoldering hot spots, which helped fire fighters control the 800-acre blaze." According to PEW Internet Project nearly 11 percent of the population is now actively ...
Posted in: Social Media by Online Marketing Team on April 20, 2009
Become A Fan Of Our Wisconsin Web Design Firm On Facebook
Join Foremost Media on the hottest social networking platform!
Become a fan of Foremost Media web development on facebook and gain access to gallery pages, insider pictures, videos, resources and the latest news and updates from our team. Visit our profile at: https://www.facebook.com/foremostmediausa/
Start using Facebook To Promote Your Business- Learn More Here
Posted in: News by Online Marketing Team on April 12, 2009
Foremost Media Launches A New Support Site
Foremost Media is proud to announce the launch of our new support site designed specifically to help customers communicate with Foremost Media staff. The new system includes:
This feature allows Foremost customers to open tickets via email or through the new support site web interface and allows the Foremost Media staff to delegate your ticket to the next available staff member. It also allows the customer to check the status of their request in real time by logging into the support site or via email as updates are made to the status of each ticket.
Customers and prospects can now contact Foremost Media sales, support and accounting departments via our new online chat interface. The links to online chat can be found on our support site as well as at the bottom of the Foremost Media Website. Online chat is typically available during normal business hours.
Online Knowledge Base
Our new ticketing system includes online knowledge ...
Posted in: News by Online Marketing Team on April 3, 2009
Janesville Schools Have A New Web Site
The Janesville School District unveils its new Web site Friday.
District spokeswoman Sheryl Miller says each school will have a section on the Web site. The new site also has the ability to send -email "blasts" or announcements to parents on an email list.
The Web site has the same address as the old Web site and can be found here.
Posted in: News by Online Marketing Team on January 30, 2009
Janesville schools Web site overhaul on the way
By FRANK SCHULTZ ( Contact ) Wednesday, Jan. 14, 2009
JANESVILLE - The Janesville School District's long-awaited Web site upgrade is only days away.
The old Web site has numerous critics, who say it is difficult to navigate and provides much less information than the sites of many other school districts.
The criticisms might come to an end as a new Web site is opened to the public by the end of this month.
The Janesville School Board got a preview of the modern-looking Web site at its meeting Tuesday. Board members applauded after the presentation.
District information coordinator Sheryl Miller said the new site is visually appealing and easy to navigate.
Individual school pages will remain unchanged at the start but will be changed in the months ahead, Miller said.
Eventually, school board meeting minutes, policies and regulations will be posted on the site, Miller said.
Foremost Media of Janesville designed the site at a cost ...
Posted in: News by Online Marketing Team on January 14, 2009