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23May/18Off

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22May/18Off

10 Awesome WordPress SEO Plugins to Optimize Your Site by @jonleeclark

Here are 10 awesome WordPress SEO plugins that will help you quickly optimize your site.

The post 10 Awesome WordPress SEO Plugins to Optimize Your Site by @jonleeclark appeared first on Search Engine Journal.

21May/18Off

How to Create Awesome Facebook Carousel Ads That Convert

How to Create Awesome Facebook Carousel Ads That Convert
Gordon Donnelly
Gordon Donnelly
Last updated : May 21, 2018

With GIFs, videos, slideshows, and Canvas ads floating ubiquitously around Facebook these days, one thing has become evident—users prefer interactive content over stagnant content. They want something that moves. Something that’ll give them an experience they just wouldn’t get looking at a still image. Image ads are still prominent, sure, but statistics tell the story: Views of branded video content on Facebook increased 258% as of June 2017. Each day, over 500 million people watch video on Facebook.

These users want multi-pronged brand stories. They want options. They want to go for a ride without getting up. Enter Facebook Carousel ads.

Facebook Carousel Ads Target

Looks great for e-commerce, but not much else, right? Not quite! In this post, we’re going to take you through the experience of creating a Facebook Carousel ad, and discuss some ways you can leverage Carousel ads for a variety of marketing objectives.

Let’s slide right into it!

What Are Facebook Carousel Ads?

Facebook Carousel is an interactive ad format which allows you to display up to 10 images or videos on “cards” within a single ad. Carousels are effective not only because they encourage prospects to interact with your ad, but because they just flat out allow you more room for products or portions of your brand story. They’re a favorite among e-commerce advertisers for precisely that reason.

Facebook Carousel Ads One Product

Here, you’ll notice that the advertiser chose to use cards to highlight specific parts of one product, and that the bottom of each card has its own unique description. This brings us to a remarkably powerful feature of Facebook Carousel ads—the potential for several different calls-to-action, beneath several different products, leading to several different landing pages. That’s flexibility you just don’t get in any other ad format. Ostensibly, if you have 10 unique cards, that’s 10 unique chances for a prospect to interact with your brand.

Another statistic, this one unique to Carousels: according to Facebook, advertisers have seen Carousel ads drive 30-50% lower cost-per-conversions and 20-30% lower cost-per-clicks than single-image link ads. That’s a lot of bang for your buck in exchange for a little more creative.

Facebook Carousel Ad Sizing and Specs

Given the multi-faceted nature of the Carousel format, it’s important to get sizing and specs down before you get into the creation process. Here are some specs you should keep in mind:

  • Image/Thumbnail size: 1,080 x 1,080 pixels
  • Image/Video aspect ratio: 1:1 (square)
  • Text: 125 characters
  • Headline: 40 characters
  • Link description: 20 characters
  • Number of cards: 2-10
  • Image file size: 30MB max
  • Video file size: 4GB max
  • Video length: Up to 240 minutes

Sticking to these specs will ensure you don’t hit any snags in the creation, delivery, or presentation of your ads.

How to Make a Facebook Carousel Ad

To make a Facebook Carousel Ad, head into Ads Manager and select a marketing objective which supports the Carousel format—reach, brand awareness, traffic, app installs, lead generation, conversions, or catalog sales.

Create your ad set, select the Carousel format, and you’re ready to rock and roll. Here’s what you’ll see when you’re ready to create your Carousel ad.

Facebook Carousel Ads Product 1

1. The text here should be overarching, and should encompass every card of your Carousel. If you’re selling one product, say something about that product. If you’re selling a line of products, say something about the line.

2. This feature is only available for News Feed and Instagram ads. Use it if the order of your cards isn’t integral to the story you’re trying to tell. If you’re simply showcasing multiple products, displaying the best-performing card first will pay dividends.

3. While Facebook Carousel ads aren’t supported for the Store Visits objective, you do have the option here of displaying a map to augment local ads. Take this example:

Facebook Carousel Ads Location

4. Your cards. You can drag and drop to rearrange the order of your cards before or after you create them.

Facebook Carousel Ads Cards

Select either video or image creative, then input a headline and (more granular) description beneath it.

Facebook Carousel Ads CTA

Continue to scroll and you’ll see the option to select individual call-to-action buttons for each card—or, if you prefer a cleaner look, to get ride of CTA buttons altogether. The “add an overlay” field allows you to place either a “Free Shipping” or “Cash on Delivery” mini-banner over your card—both of which, conceivably, could make converting a lot more appealing to prospects.

Facebook Carousel Ad Examples Facebook Carousel Ads Examples

The rumors are true: there lives within Facebook an entire group devoted to showing off the best Carousel ads in town. It’s glorious.

If you’re ever in need of Carousel inspiration, look no further than this group. While it seems to have fallen out of widespread use in the last year or so, there’s still a massive backload of Carousel examples to explore and analyze.

Remember, there are the seven objectives for which Facebook Carousel ads are available—reach, brand awareness, traffic, app installs, lead generation, conversions, and catalog sales. Today, for the sake of economy, we’re going to tuck reach within brand awareness, catalog sales within conversions, and save app installs for a rainy day. Let’s look at Carousels that work to accomplish four common, yet unique objectives—brand awareness, traffic, lead gen, and conversions—and discuss why each is effective.

Facebook Carousel Ads for Brand Awareness

 

What says credibility like Rupert Lordchampion? From a messaging perspective, this ad is great because it melds an image of market longevity with new-age edginess—Rupert is an established guy, but he has a problem with authority, and is prone to millennial-like irreverence.

From a formatting standpoint, you can see why Carousels are effective when telling compelling brand stories (even facetious ones like this). Here, Dr. Pepper is able to squeeze in 3 different 10-15 second ad spots—all short and quippy enough to earn continued viewing—within a single Carousel. Whether you’re developing a character (as Dr. Pepper is here), or simply weaving multiple yarns of a larger story—the ability to string together expansive chunks of messaging makes Carousel ads an intriguing format with tons of possibilities.

Facebook Carousel Ads for Traffic

 

Whether you’re driving general traffic, traffic to unique pages with unique cards, or traffic to a single page with all your cards—the Carousel format makes for a solid traffic driver. For their 4-Course Feast promotion, the Red Lobster decided to separate their cards out by courses and point all of their links to one landing page. This tactic works well when displaying products that are valuable in their own right, but best considered in concert—say, a real estate agency showing off multiple rooms of a home listing.

When you’re crafting traffic-driving Carousels, think about the journeys your customers have realistically taken/will take to purchase your products. You have 10 unique cards to flesh out that journey. Think about your customers’ pain points, and how your unique value proposition helps assuage those points. Tell a story.

Facebook Carousel Ads for Lead Gen Facebook Carousel Ads Leads

Facebook Lead Ads are the crown jewel of paid social lead generation—and for good reason. They’re cheap, they’re effective, and because your lead forms load directly within Facebook (as opposed to on an external landing page), they’re super fast. Well, Carousel gives you all of that functionality within the Carousel format. Read: more chances to generate coveted leads for your business.

Now, unfortunately, you can’t set up unique lead forms to open in within unique cards. If you wanted to leverage your Facebook Carousel ad to accrue unique leads, you’d have to link to unique external landing pages. Instead, the purpose of utilizing Lead ads in your Carousel is to bulk up your creative.

In the above ad, for instance, Connectio uses three different images with three unique headlines—appealing to three different segments of their prospect base—in attempt to gather names and emails. Their descriptive text is broad enough to encompass and appeal to all three segments. The prospect need merely click any card to enter his information, at which point he is immediately taken to a “Thank You Screen” with the option to visit your website or download a guide.

Lead ads in Carousel form. Magical.

Facebook Carousel Ads for Conversions Facebook Carousel Ads E-Commerce

At long last, the objective for which Carousel ads are seemingly tailor-made: conversions. Above, we have a Hawkers Co. Carousel ad optimized for e-commerce. Now, targeting multiple audience segments in a single ad spot is nothing novel:  

Facebook Carousel Ads Playtex

But, as I’ve been harping on, having the ability to send those segments to unique landing pages allows advertisers to cast a much broader net than they could with just a single image ad. Because you’re advertising multiple products to multiple segments, you can be a little intentionally cavalier with your audience targeting. Hawkers Co. leverages that functionality to send prospects to product pages containing the same pair of sunglasses with different sets of lenses.

You’ll also notice the cross-card “blending” of creative imagery—the same tactic Target used in my first example. Blending your cards is a creative way to turn your Carousel into a graceful panoramic, and give prospects a holistic look at your product or story.

Some Thoughts…

If selling products online is your game, don’t hesitate—Facebook Carousel ads are an ideal medium to showcase multiple products to multiple segments of your prospect pool. Still, don’t sleep on Carousels just because you’re running an awareness, traffic, or lead gen campaign. Compelling visual storytelling, in some form or another, has become nearly a prerequisite for Facebook users making their way through purchase funnels. In that regard, Facebook Carousel ads have become an effective tool for a diverse array of campaign types.

Gordon Donnelly
Gordon Donnelly

Gordon Donnelly is a college hockey washout turned SEO & content marketer. He's a sucker for: fly fishing, mudslides, and Jim Morrison driving around aimlessly in the desert.

17May/18Off

Top 10 Awesome Details in The Office You Never Noticed

Top 10 Awesome Details in The Office You Never Noticed Subscribe: http://goo.gl/Q2kKrD and also Ring the Bell to get notified // Have a Top 10 idea? Submit it to us here! http://watchmojo.com/suggest We bet you didn't catch these details and hidden references in The Office! We're taking a look at those easily missed parts of the show that you probably never noticed, such as the New Year's Resolutions board on the wall, Michael Scott's Certificate of Authenticity instead of a diploma, the 1 million cut trees Award hanging in the office, and more. Join WatchMojo as we count down our picks for the Top 10 Awesome Details in The Office You Definitely Missed. Watch more great The Office videos here: Top 10 The Office U.S. Running Gags: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OPFmueb07n4 Top 10 The Office U.S. Episodes: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i9hWtj5xp0c Top 10 Jim & Pam Moments: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sup8vFboB5g&t List rank and entries: #10. Back to Creed’s (Grass) Roots #9. Extra! Extra! #8. Cut Trees Award #7. Tea Party #6. Certificate of Authenticity #5. Creed the Criminal #4. Sign My Cast #3, 2, 1: ??? Check our our other channels! http://www.youtube.com/mojoplays http://www.youtube.com/mojotalks http://www.youtube.com/msmojo http://www.youtube.com/jrmojo http://www.youtube.com/watchmojouk WatchMojo's Social Media Pages http://www.Facebook.com/WatchMojo http://www.Twitter.com/WatchMojo http://instagram.com/watchmojo Get WatchMojo merchandise at shop.watchmojo.com WatchMojo’s ten thousand videos on Top 10 lists, Origins, Biographies, Tips, How To’s, Reviews, Commentary and more on Pop Culture, Celebrity, Movies, Music, TV, Film, Video Games, Politics, News, Comics, Superheroes. Your trusted authority on ranking Pop Culture.
16May/18Off

4 Awesome Apps for Great Social Images

It’s said that a picture is worth a thousand words, but you don’t want those thousand words to be incredibly negative because you shared a low-quality image! The Internet can be awfully unforgiving and the backlash on social media can be remarkably harsh. We’re not all professional graphic designers — I know I’m not — but we should all be paying closer attention to the images we use on our blogs, in our marketing materials and on social media too.

Yes, it is absolutely true that you can invest in more professionally-geared programs like Lightroom, PhotoShop and InDesign to handle visual tasks like this. It’s also true that these tools can be too complex, too confusing and ultimately too overwhelming for a lot of people. You want to have the powerful of these types of solutions without the unneeded frustration.

Thankfully, there are some great options that you can access on the web to help you create beautiful images and designs to share far and wide.

Canva

One of the more popular graphic design apps, particularly among social media influencers and bloggers, is Canva. What’s great here is that you have access to a number of purpose-built templates to help you get started with whatever graphic design project you might have.

If you’ve ever seen one of those stylized quote images on Instagram, it may have been created on Canva. If you’ve seen a captivating image on Pinterest, it may have been created on Canva. There are layouts for everything from business cards to ebooks, photo collages to media kits and Facebook cover images.

Apply filters, access millions of stock photographs, choose from hundreds of fonts and more. There’s also a simplified image editor if all you want to do is adjust an existing image.

PicMonkey

Arguably one of the biggest direct competitors to Canva, PicMonkey boasts that it offers “everything you need to make your designs come to life.” This includes standard photo editing, as well as collage making and graphic design, as well as photo touch-ups.

The goal here is that it’s “never been easier to feed your creative beast.” You can apply watermarks with ease, brighten eyes in portraits, apply filters and overlays, and even utilize fun effects like turning a photograph into a pencil sketch.

And just like Canva, PicMonkey can also be used for all sorts of brand graphics, like what you might need to make a logo, create social images, design a poster and more. There are templates for almost anything you can imagine.

Fotor

Geared more toward online photo editing and less toward graphic design, Fotor is akin to an online PhotoShop. You can utilize simple sliders to adjust everything from brightness to saturation, or you can go more advanced and shift the RGB curve to achieve the color balance you desire. There are even HDR effects for advanced editing needs too.

If you like playing around with the different photo filters in apps like Instagram, then you’ll also enjoy going through the various photo effects here, which have been created by Fotor’s own team of designers.

And then there are the photo retouching tools for helping to clean up the blemishes and imperfections you might find in your portraits. Add radiance without making it all look too artificial.

DesignBold

Going back to the world of graphic design, DesignBold offers an easy-to-understand drag-and-drop interface so you can “create a stunning design in just 5 minutes,” allowing you to “save more time for imagination.”

As with Canva and PicMonkey, DesignBold also helps you get started with a broad range of template choices. There are literally thousands to choose from here, including more formal creations like documents and invitation cards, as well as a good selection of templates for marketing materials, social media, blogging and ebooks too.

Want something for an Instagram post, Instagram story, Facebook profile picture or Soundcloud banner? There are specific templates available for each of these specific uses. Combining a drag-and-drop interface with keyboard shortcuts, DesignBold is quick, efficient and beautiful.

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15May/18Off

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14May/18Off

Why Buzzsumo Is More Awesome Than You Think – Here’s Why #166

For many marketers, Buzzsumo has become the go-to tool for evaluating how content performs on social media. But few know the full power of the site that goes far beyond measuring social engagement.

In this episode of the popular Here’s Why digital marketing video series, Stone Temple’s Mark Traphagen takes you on a whirlwind tour of some of his favorite features in Buzzsumo, and shows you how it can help stimulate your content marketing juices.

DISCLAIMER: Mark Traphagen, Eric Enge, and Stone Temple Consulting have no compensated business relationship with Buzzsumo or it’s owner, Brandwatch. We just think Buzzsumo is awesome!

Don’t miss a single episode of Here’s Why with Mark & Eric. Click the subscribe button below to be notified via email each time a new video is published. Over a half million views on YouTube!

Subscribe to Here’s Why

Resources Transcript

Eric: Mark, you wanted to show us some cool things about Buzzsumo, right?   

Mark: Yes. But before we start, I just want our audience to know that this is an unsolicited, uncompensated review of their product. We just happen to think it’s awesome. And I want to show our viewers that it does a lot more than they might know.   

Eric: Okay, great. So let’s start with what Buzzsumo is.   

Mark: Well, most people who know about Buzzsumo probably think of it as a tool for measuring the amount of social activity shared or earned by content on the web. Of course, it’s awesome at that.  

Eric: With Buzzsumo, you can enter any topic and see the most shared content for it broken down by shares per social network, as you see below:

The most shared feature allows you to see social activity for any keyword   

Mark: Yes. And you can also search by domain to see what content has performed the best on your own site or the site of a competitor. Or use Buzzsumo’s advanced search operators to filter in other ways. For example, using the “author:” operator, I can see my most shared content for the past five years:

The most shared content published by Mark Traphagen 

Eric: A lot to explore there for sure, but I know you wanted to show us some of the lesser known but still awesome things you can do with Buzzsumo.  

Mark: Well there’s a lot, so I’ll stick to a few highlights and encourage our viewers to explore on their own. The newest addition to Buzzsumo is their Evergreen Score. Basically the higher the number, the longer a life the content has had on social media. Below is the Evergreen Score for TechCrunch for the past year:

The Evergreen Score feature allows users to see that certain content continues to be shared months after publication

Mark: You can see that a post about Facebook from last June has the highest Evergreen Score. That means that it continues to be shared right up to the present. The score rates higher posts that continue to get high levels of social engagement over time with a weighting toward recency.  

Eric: That’s cool. So what are some other kinds of metrics we can look at in Buzzsumo?  

Mark: Well, I think one of the most interesting is the content analyzer. Below is the social performance of the content on our own site in aggregate over the past year:

The Content Analyzer allows users to see how various elements of posts affect sharing

Mark: You can see which networks gave us the most shares, what types of content were most engaging for us, what days of the week are most productive, how content length affects sharing, and much more. Here’s an interesting stat: our posts of over 3,000 words get 30% more shares than any of our content shorter than that. 

Eric: Well that would be our research studies. One of the kinds of content that a joint Buzzsumo and Moz study said tends to be able to get more shares as well as more links.   

Mark: Now our time is short, so let me just give a taste of some of the other yummy data you can get from Buzzsumo.

Now one that I love is their Facebook analyzer. Put in a Facebook page and you can see the post that got the most interactions or drill down to sort by likes, comments, or shares. You can also get charts and graphs of your pages’ trends over time in a format much easier to access than Facebook’s insights.

There are so many other things that you can do with Buzzsumo, such as finding out who the most shared influencers are in a topic, seeing mentions of your brand and who is linking to your content, and even an incredible questions analyzer that searches hundreds of thousands of forums, as well as Reddit, Quora, and Amazon to help you discover what people were asking about a topic.   

Eric: It’s a great way to uncover what kind of content you ought to be producing.   

Mark: So there you have it. My whirlwind tour of some of my favorite things about Buzzsumo. Now I encourage our viewers to go to Buzzsumo.com, set up an account (you can try it for free) and start exploring.

Eric: Thanks, Mark.

Don’t miss a single episode of Here’s Why with Mark & Eric. Click the subscribe button below to be notified via email each time a new video is published.

Subscribe to Here’s Why

See all of our Here’s Why Videos | Subscribe to our YouTube Channel

14May/18Off

Why Buzzsumo Is More Awesome Than You Think – Here’s Why #166

For many marketers, Buzzsumo has become the go-to tool for evaluating how content performs on social media. But few know the full power of the site that goes far beyond measuring social engagement.

In this episode of the popular Here’s Why digital marketing video series, Stone Temple’s Mark Traphagen takes you on a whirlwind tour of some of his favorite features in Buzzsumo, and shows you how it can help stimulate your content marketing juices.

DISCLAIMER: Mark Traphagen, Eric Enge, and Stone Temple Consulting have no compensated business relationship with Buzzsumo or it’s owner, Brandwatch. We just think Buzzsumo is awesome!

Don’t miss a single episode of Here’s Why with Mark & Eric. Click the subscribe button below to be notified via email each time a new video is published. Over a half million views on YouTube!

Subscribe to Here’s Why

Resources Transcript

Eric: Mark, you wanted to show us some cool things about Buzzsumo, right?   

Mark: Yes. But before we start, I just want our audience to know that this is an unsolicited, uncompensated review of their product. We just happen to think it’s awesome. And I want to show our viewers that it does a lot more than they might know.   

Eric: Okay, great. So let’s start with what Buzzsumo is.   

Mark: Well, most people who know about Buzzsumo probably think of it as a tool for measuring the amount of social activity shared or earned by content on the web. Of course, it’s awesome at that.  

Eric: With Buzzsumo, you can enter any topic and see the most shared content for it broken down by shares per social network, as you see below:

The most shared feature allows you to see social activity for any keyword   

Mark: Yes. And you can also search by domain to see what content has performed the best on your own site or the site of a competitor. Or use Buzzsumo’s advanced search operators to filter in other ways. For example, using the “author:” operator, I can see my most shared content for the past five years:

The most shared content published by Mark Traphagen 

Eric: A lot to explore there for sure, but I know you wanted to show us some of the lesser known but still awesome things you can do with Buzzsumo.  

Mark: Well there’s a lot, so I’ll stick to a few highlights and encourage our viewers to explore on their own. The newest addition to Buzzsumo is their Evergreen Score. Basically the higher the number, the longer a life the content has had on social media. Below is the Evergreen Score for TechCrunch for the past year:

The Evergreen Score feature allows users to see that certain content continues to be shared months after publication

Mark: You can see that a post about Facebook from last June has the highest Evergreen Score. That means that it continues to be shared right up to the present. The score rates higher posts that continue to get high levels of social engagement over time with a weighting toward recency.  

Eric: That’s cool. So what are some other kinds of metrics we can look at in Buzzsumo?  

Mark: Well, I think one of the most interesting is the content analyzer. Below is the social performance of the content on our own site in aggregate over the past year:

The Content Analyzer allows users to see how various elements of posts affect sharing

Mark: You can see which networks gave us the most shares, what types of content were most engaging for us, what days of the week are most productive, how content length affects sharing, and much more. Here’s an interesting stat: our posts of over 3,000 words get 30% more shares than any of our content shorter than that. 

Eric: Well that would be our research studies. One of the kinds of content that a joint Buzzsumo and Moz study said tends to be able to get more shares as well as more links.   

Mark: Now our time is short, so let me just give a taste of some of the other yummy data you can get from Buzzsumo.

Now one that I love is their Facebook analyzer. Put in a Facebook page and you can see the post that got the most interactions or drill down to sort by likes, comments, or shares. You can also get charts and graphs of your pages’ trends over time in a format much easier to access than Facebook’s insights.

There are so many other things that you can do with Buzzsumo, such as finding out who the most shared influencers are in a topic, seeing mentions of your brand and who is linking to your content, and even an incredible questions analyzer that searches hundreds of thousands of forums, as well as Reddit, Quora, and Amazon to help you discover what people were asking about a topic.   

Eric: It’s a great way to uncover what kind of content you ought to be producing.   

Mark: So there you have it. My whirlwind tour of some of my favorite things about Buzzsumo. Now I encourage our viewers to go to Buzzsumo.com, set up an account (you can try it for free) and start exploring.

Eric: Thanks, Mark.

Don’t miss a single episode of Here’s Why with Mark & Eric. Click the subscribe button below to be notified via email each time a new video is published.

Subscribe to Here’s Why

See all of our Here’s Why Videos | Subscribe to our YouTube Channel