• FAQs

          Search engine optimization (SEO) helps businesses drive visits to their website through organic search traffic. Given that the top organic search results receive a third of the clicks, a decline in ranking could be detrimental for your business. Implementing SEO best practices on your website will help to ensure that your web content is seen by as many potential customers as possible. The more visitors you have, the better your chances are of converting those visits into sales!

          Local search engine optimization (SEO) helps local businesses gain visibility by optimizing their local business listings for local search. A business that leverages local SEO will include its address, phone number, local opening times, and exact location in the form of a local citation. The goal is to rank for local searches which are usually performed by people in a specific geographical region looking for a business near them.

          We typically see results within the first 30 to 60 days, but when it comes to SEO, there are many factors at play. It's important to remember that SEO is a long-term strategy and results may not come as fast at you wish.

        • FAQs

          Digital advertising uses the internet to send advertisements to customers who are online through different websites and social media platforms like Google, Bing, LinkedIn and Facebook.

          The price for Google Ads management depends on the monthly ad spend. For accounts with $1,000 in monthly ad spend, the price is $550/month. Between $1,000 and $5,000 a month in ad spend, the price is $950/month. For $5,000 to $10,000 a month in ad spend, the price is $2,000/month. For more than $10,000 a month in ad spend, the price is $4,500/month.

          The price for Social Media Ads management depends on the monthly ad spend. For accounts with $1,000 in monthly ad spend, the price is $550/month. Between $1,000 and $5,000 a month in ad spend, the price is $950/month. For $5,000 to $10,000 a month in ad spend, the price is $2,000/month. For more than $10,000 a month in ad spend, the price is $4,500/month.

        • FAQs

          This depends on the complexity and size of a redesign and if eCommerce is needed. On average, it takes around 14-18 weeks from the web design intensive stage to launch.

          If your website experiences the following issues: it’s not responsive on all devices, has a slow loading speed, the design appears old and tired, users don’t spend long on the site, sales are stagnant, or your business is going through a rebranding - your website needs a redesign to boost your brand awareness and sales.

          Sometimes there’s no need to rebuild a website. Minor edits, refreshing page content and images, or restructuring page layout for SEO best practices can boost traffic and sales.

        • FAQs

          Semantic search launched in 2013 with the release of Google's Hummingbird update. Since then, Google's search engine has become more complex. The integration of machine learning, with RankBrain, and NLP, with BERT, has enabled the search engine to better understand the context of a query and deliver more personalized and targeted results. Semantic SEO is the process of creating machine-readable content using structured data and linked open data to help search engines better understand your content.

          On-page SEO is the practice of optimizing individual web pages in order to rank higher and earn more relevant traffic in search engines. On-page SEO refers to both the content and HTML source code of a page that can be optimized, as opposed to off-page SEO which refers to links and other external signals. From meta tags to page content, website structure, and HTML, on-page optimization services are focused on making your website more visible to search engines.

          Structured data refers to any organized data that conforms to a certain format, such as information in a relational database. When information is highly structured and predictable, search engines can more easily organize and display it in creative ways. Structured data involves using a piece of code that is laid out in a specific format easily understood by search engines. The search engines read the code and use it to display search results in a more dynamic way.

        • FAQs

          An SEO agency has experts in different areas of search engine optimization that may be out of the realm of your marketing team's abilities. SEO can be very complex and time-consuming. Furthermore, as search engine algorithms change it can be difficult to stay current on the latest ranking factors and strategies for improving online visibility. You will likely see a greater return on investment and better results from using a professional SEO agency than you would from tackling this on your own.

          As a digital marketing agency, SMA Marketing provides products and services in four areas: SEO, Local SEO, Digital Advertising, and Web Design

          We focus on building authentic, long-lasting relationships with our clients. We’re goal oriented and results driven and believe in doing good and making a difference in the world.

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5 Practical Things Leaders Can do to Develop Empathy Skills

5 Practical Things Leaders Can do to Develop Empathy Skills

Empathy. This simple word is full of potential and has the ability to move us toward our core purpose as humans. Regardless of race, ethnicity, cultural or religious background, at our core, we all have one desire, to belong.

When it comes to empathetic marketing, we need to remember there is a real person looking at our products and service. If our goal is to provide solutions to a pain point, we must understand where the pain is coming from first.

Our lives are a constant journey to find significance and security not in things but in others. But for many, the word “empathy” is greatly misunderstood. The practice of empathy is far from touchy-feely emotions. In order for leaders and business owners to make authentic connections with their target audience developing empathy skills is essential.

We connect with each other in a number of ways and at different levels. The deepest connection point is on an emotional level. Emotions are the most powerful force in the universe. But emotions were never meant to be bottled up and pushed down. They were meant to be shared and experienced. In order to connect with those we love, work with, and service, we must learn how to embrace our own and others’ emotions.

What is Empathy?

Empathy is the ability to identify and understand another’s situation, feelings, and motives. Unlike sympathy, which is feelings of pity and sorrow for someone else’s misfortune, empathy seeks to see the world from another perspective and connect with them where they are. It’s also more than trying to see yourself in their shoes. Empathy is about connecting. It’s about trying to understand where they are coming from and why they feel the way they do.

Why is an Empathetic Approach Important in Marketing?

In many ways, we have lost the skills needed to truly connect. In business and in our personal lives, more and more people are adopting the “why me” attitude. This victim mindset has crippled our culture and forced division like never before. It’s difficult to reach a potential customer with an inwardly-centric message. However, when your company can show you connect with your audience, you built trust.

Empathy is a learned skill, and like any skill, if you don’t use it, you lose it. We need leaders, forerunners, and ruckus makers to stand up for humanity; to learn how to use empathy to combat selfishness and ignorance, and to make the change in the world that we want to see.

Action is the foundational key to all success. – Pablo Picasso

Empathy Without Action is Dead.

If we are going to be able to use empathy for our marketing efforts, we must put it into action. Empathy is now a verb. Without practice, we cannot learn. Without action, we cannot succeed. It is not enough to just empathize with others, we must use that feeling to spur us into action.

Activating our empathy will provide us with a channel to share our message and heart like never before. Humans are emotional creatures. In order to move them, you must speak to the core of their being. Throughout history, we see all great leaders use empathy, not just to understand those they lead, but as a medium to breathe life into their vision.

Here are 5 simple things you can start doing today to develop your empathy skills and help you start connecting with those who matter the most.

1. Listen – Really listen to people.

Listening for engagement means using your ears, eyes, and heart. Pay attention to their body language, the tone of their voice, the hidden emotions behind what they are saying to you, and to the context of their words. Often what we say and what we mean are very different things.

Another key to listening is not interrupting. Even if you don’t agree, don’t dismiss their concerns offhand. Never rush to give advice. Don’t change the subject. Allow the person to whom you are listening to have their moment.

2. Tune in to non-verbal communication.

If we are going to increase our customer empathy, we need to try to understand what people are thinking and feeling, we need to look at how they communicate non-verbally. For most people, this is the most common way they communicate what they think or feel. Many of us are afraid to say what’s on our minds. This causes internal conflict within the person. When your feelings and words are not in agreement, the body will often show the truth through non-verbal communication.

Practice the “93 percent rule”. According to a study by Professor Emeritus Albert Mehrabian of UCLA, words – the things we say – account for only 7 percent of the total message people receive when communicating about feelings and attitudes. The other 93 percent of the message that we communicate is contained in our tone of voice and body language.

3. Be fully present when you are with people.

This is one of the hardest things to do in today’s “connected world.” It’s easy to believe we can multi-task, but the sad truth is we can’t. None of us. So, don’t check your email, look at your watch or take phone calls when a direct report drops into your office to talk to you. How would you feel if your boss did that to you?

When a client calls with a concern, listen without trying to upsell a product or service. Empathy in marketing also means knowing when to listen at deeper levels beyond a sales funnel.

4. Encourage people to speak their minds.

Encourage people, particularly the quiet ones, to speak their minds in meetings. Leadership isn’t about telling people what to do, it’s about encouraging them to be confident in their role and giving them the tools to succeed. Giving people a safe place to speak their minds and challenge ideas will benefit the team as a whole. 

A great customer experience may include providing space for a client to express a concern without becoming defensive. You don’t have to react to every idea or concern that is presented, but giving people a place to speak their minds will build trust and connection to the overall vision.

5. Give genuine recognition and praise.

Have you ever been given a half-hearted “thank you”? You probably would have rather they never said anything. Pay attention to what people in your business are doing. Catch them doing the right things. Then, when you recognize them, take the time to make your words genuine and memorable. Empathy is a skill. The right supramarginal gyrus is an emotional and thinking “muscle” in the brain that becomes stronger the more we use it.

As we move further and further into the connection economy, leaders and business owners must learn to develop empathy and use it on a daily basis. At the end of the day, with empathy-based marketing, we work with and for people. Real people who have real needs and emotions.

Strengthening our empathy skills will help us inspire our team members, create marketing campaigns that connect, and make our sales process more human. I want to encourage you to try some of these suggestions and see the reactions of those you come in contact with. I believe you will notice some amazing results.

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