LSM Volunteers at Hands on Nashville Day

On September 19th, part of team LSM participated in Hands on Nashville’s annual event, Hands on Nashville Day. The event is the city’s largest annual day of service benefitting Metro Nashville Public Schools, where hundreds of volunteers complete “done-in-a-day” improvement projects to create environments where students can be happy, healthy and ready to succeed!
Here’s a recap of the event:

LSM Participates in HON Day 2015

All in all a wonderful event benefitting a terrific cause, and in our case, a wonderful elementary school.

Local Search Masters is proud to have organizations like Hands on Nashville in town supporting our city. For more information on Hands on Nashville you can visit http://www.hon.org/.

7 Things We Learned From Google All-Stars Summit

What LSM Learned at Google All-Stars Summit

We went, we saw, we Googled. This past week, Local Search Masters was invited to the Google Partners All Stars summit at Google HQ in Mountain View, California. Aside from ensuring that we made the pilgrimage to In-N-Out Burger and visiting the Google campus gift shop to stock up on Christmas gifts, we were treated to a tour of the beautiful campus and a full day of keynote presentations by Google’s elite. Topics spanned from the more advanced Adwords dynamic remarketing discussions to developing cultures of innovation, so needless to say, there was a lot to learn!

LSM at Googleplex 1LSM at Google HQ to learn about Google AdWords

 

Here are just 7 of our main take-aways from the trip:

 

1. It’s Time To Innovate

Innovation isn’t just for CEOs, Chief Innovation Officers, and Innovation teams anymore. Everyone is called to innovate. Yes, that means you. Yes, you. If your business is not innovating, you’re missing out on opportunity. Every major industry is reinventing itself  with technology. Google driverless cars are real, and in a few, very short years, they will become a practical part of the mass marketplace, all because of Google’s culture of innovation. Even with highly-regulated industries like public transportation, ride-sharing companies (like Uber and Lyft) are not just offering a new service, but disrupting an ecosystem that’s been stable for decades. This is what we should all be doing – taking the risk to disrupt the environment in which we have become complacent. The innovators will win, and those who do not innovate will die. Google encourages its employees to think 10x. Meaning, when they think of an idea for a product or service, it’s not to improve a process by 10%, 25%, or even 50% – that’s incremental. 10x shifts the paradigm of thinking into accomplishing a previously impossible feat.

2. There’s Still Opportunity To Reach Untapped Markets

51% of businesses still don’t use the Internet to market their business. This means that the mom & pop shop down the street from you is not reaching its full audience, whether it be via pay-per-click Google Adwords search advertising, or maybe even creating a Facebook page. A good portion of your locale is yours for the taking!

3. We Are All Brand Builders

As the gig-economy takes off more and more, a company’s story takes front and center. The great, multinational conglomerates of our parent’s time are dwindling. It’s stories like the way Steve Jobs created Apple Computer in a garage that resonate with people and cultivate that positive brand perception, and the word of mouth engagement is what will drive sales. Jeff Rozic (Brand Product Strategist, Google Brand Labs) explains it like this… “Reach/impressions are easy to get; engagement is valuable, and the currency is ‘time spent.’’ Long gone are the days of purchasing 50,000 Twitter followers just for public perception – anyone can see through that now. The only thing that matters is that your true fans and brand ambassadors are talking about you and sharing their positive associations within their personal spheres of influence.

4. Create Micro-Moments

Google All-Stars Conference Room at HQYour day is filled with micro-moments, or small decisions that we make without too much thought. Google categorizes three types of micro-moments:

“I Want to Know” (115% increase year over year in shopping searches)

“I Want To Go” (34x increases in “near me” searches since 2011)

“I Want To Buy” (Google’s litmus test is a 90-second checkout experience, EVEN on mobile)

At the crux of all three types of moments, people want information, and they want that information fast. With this in mind, user experience needs to be a main focus for businesses. Optimize your website, provide reliable information about your product/service, and make it so easy to check-out and purchase that your grandma could do it. Pablo Slough framed it like this: 1) Identify your audience’s micro-moments; 2) Deliver on your audience’s needs in the moment; and 3) Measure/quantify every moment that matters.

5. Mobile, Mobile, Mobile

The time for mobile is now. It’s not the future; it’s here. And, the majority of the time, the micro-moments mentioned above happen on a mobile device. Why? Mobile is intensely more personal than desktop;  our phones are an extension of our person these days. It’s the source of our knowledge, and we think twice before surrendering that source. It’s personal, and as marketers, we need to remember this as we develop marketing campaigns tailored specifically towards mobile users.

6. Buzzword Of The Year: Programmatic

Long story short here: while programmatic is very important to think about, don’t give in to the hype of what programmatic could be. At its core, programmatic is the notion that a marketer can use audience data to automate the buying and selling of ads, reaching the right person at the right time. Data is getting smarter, so use it to your advantage and make your marketing easier.

7. Digital First

Marketers who lead on the internet surpass those who do not, especially from an advertising standpoint. Look at successful startup companies like Dollar Shave Club, AirBNB, and Warby Parker. You know their team made a dedicated and conscious decision to focus on digital first, and then scale up using more traditional mediums like radio and TV. The perfect 30-second TV spot is not the answer anymore – shorter, snackable content that captures attention is the key to success now. There doesn’t need to be a grand voice-over or a perfectly-lit set; Jeff Rozic explained that the keys to success and your job as marketers are to educate, entertain, and inspire.

 

LSM Speaks at Woman’s Club of Nashville

The Nashville ChaNAWBO logopter of the National Association of Women Business Owners (NAWBO) held their monthly luncheon on July 29, 2015 at the Woman’s Club of Nashville. The members in attendance were all local businesswomen interested in improving their businesses through digital marketing.

NAWBO asked Matt Job, ChiefNAWBO - Matt Marketing Officer of Local Search Masters, to present at this meeting on various aspects of digital marketing. Matt explained the importance of search engine marketing and search engine optimization, while allowing room for questions and discussion among the audience. Some topics he covered were:

  1. Why businesses should consider investing in organic SEO
  2. The importance of SEO optimization for websites to increase their rankings on  important, non-branded search queries
  3. A rundown of Google’s search engine result pages (SERPs) and how the format alters across devices and search queries (mobile vs. desktop, organic vs. paid)

The presentation ended with a worNAWBO - womenkshop of which the audience participated in a group activity that asked to recall important points that Matt touched upon previously. The helpful presentation provided these women with a basic foundation of digital marketing skills that they can now use to improve their businesses’ online presence.

We really appreciate NAWBO for inviting LSM to this workshop and for providing a great community for these dedicated businesswomen to expand their businesses. To learn more about the Nashville Chapter of NAWBO, please visit: http://nashvillenawbo.com/.

About Local Search Masters

Local Search Masters (LSM) is a digital marketing agency located in Nashville, TN that specializes in organic SEO, local search marketing, paid-per-click advertising, social media management, online reputation management, and franchise development marketing for franchise systems, local businesses and large corporations with multiple locations. For additional information about our agency, contact us today!

Local Search Masters
631 2nd Ave South #LL-D
Nashville, TN 37210
615-346-5551
localsearchmasters.com

LSM Named a 2015 Google Partners All Star

Local Search Masters a Google Partner All-Star

For the second time in three years, Local Search Masters, has been named a Google Partners All-StarGoogle Partners All Stars Competition

As part of the awards package for being an All-Star, LSM has received an all-expenses-paid invitation to Google’s All-Stars Summit at Google HQ in Mountain View, California. The summit will include a tour of the “Googleplex”, one-on-one consultations with a few of Google’s online marketing experts, advanced training and, hopefully, lots of free Google merchandise!

Google HQ“We’re very excited and proud about the opportunity to get back out to Mountain View and spend time with our Google Agency Partners and other Google personnel” says CEO Trevor Emerson.

LSM is a member of the Google Partners network, a membership earned by passing Google advertising exams, adhering to paid search marketing best practices, and delivering quality results for our clients. Beyond providing us with the opportunity to receive all-expenses-paid travel to fun locations, our partnership with Google provides us access to additional personnel, tools, trainings and special events.

Upon our return from Google HQ, LSM will revisit this post and include additional information about certain things we learned and how they can help businesses generate more business from their web presence.

Local Search Masters
631 2nd Ave South #LL-D
Nashville, TN 37210
615-346-5551
localsearchmasters.com

LSM Volunteers at Nashville Humane Association

Local Search Masters had an awww-fully fun day at NHA!

On June 3rd, part of team LSM had the opportunity to spend their day volunteering at the Nashville Humane Association (NHA), a terrific organization whose goal is to protect the well-being of animals and to provide such services as pet adoptions, animal education, humane education, lost and found animal support and free spaying / neutering services.

We were given a quick training session on the impact that NHA makes in the Nashville community, as well as instructions on how to properly handle and treat the animals. From there, the LSM team was able to spend the rest of the day with some of NHA’s current residents. We walked dogs, played with kittens, and gave a few cats a nice long hug… Some of us needed those hugs as much as the cats!

 

 

Local Search Masters visits the Nashville Humane Association and develops an infographic illustrating what we did during our time there.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Not only did we have a blast playing with the adorable animals dogs and cats, we also learned a lot about the overall efforts of NHA.

NHA does so much more than take in animals and prepare them for adoption. Another part of their mission is to educate about proper health care and to teach about the humane treatment of all animals. Look out for NHA’s mobile Rover, “Big Yellow Bus”, which travels around town educating the community about proper pet care and providing free spay/neuter services to those who cannot afford it.

“It was great for LSM to see firsthand all that the NHA does for these animals beyond just giving them a temporary home” says CMO of LSM, Matt Job. “I absolutely recommend that people stop by for a visit if they haven’t already. A little of your time and affection can go a long way in making an animal feel loved.”

The infographic below summarizes our time at the volunteering event and provides a few statistics about NHA. To see more pictures from our day, visit LSM’s Facebook album!

We really appreciate NHA for hosting us and for all their humanitarian efforts. To learn more about them, you can visit www.nashvilehumane.org or call them at (615) 352-1010.

About Local Search Masters

Local Search Masters (LSM) is a digital marketing agency located in Nashville, TN that specializes in organic SEO, local search marketing, paid-per-click advertising, social media management, online reputation management, and franchise development marketing for franchise systems, local businesses and large corporations with multiple locations. For additional information about our agency, contact us today!

Local Search Masters
631 2nd Ave South #LL-D
Nashville, TN 37210
615-346-5551
localsearchmasters.com

LSM Named Finalist in 2015 Small Business Awards

Last month, Local Search Masters (LSM) was named a finalist for the Nashville Business Journal’s Small Business Awards for the category of 11-25 employees.  The Small Business Awards, sponsored by Comcast Business, recognizes fast-growing small companSmall Business Awardsies in Nashville; this is the fourth consecutive year that LSM has been a finalist!

For a company to be considered the public sends in nominations and then the nominees provide more information about their respective business, including revenue numbers over the last three years, company size and a couple reasons why they should be considered for the award.

“LSM is excited about another consecutive nomination and looks forward to continuously being one of the fastest-growing businesses in the Nashville marketplace,” says President and CEO Trevor Emerson.

The 25 honoree companies (congratulations to our fellow finalists by the way!) will attend a special luncheon, held at the Omni Nashville Hotel on Thursday July 23, where the winners will be announced. For additional information about the event you can click here. If you’d like to attend and cheer for LSM, you can click here.

About Local Search Masters

Local Search Masters (LSM) is a digital marketing agency located in Nashville, TN that specializes in organic SEO, local search marketing, paid-per-click advertising, social media management, online reputation management, and franchise development marketing for franchise systems, local businesses and large corporations with multiple locations. For additional information about our agency, contact us today!

Local Search Masters
631 2nd Ave South #LL-D
Nashville, TN 37210
615-346-5551
localsearchmasters.com

LSM Named Top Local SEO Agency

LSM Recognized as Top Local SEO & PPC Agency

LSM Named Top Local SEO and pay-per-click advertising agencyLocal Search Masters (LSM) was recently named one of the top local SEO companies of 2015 by Clutch, a Washington, DC based research firm focused on technology, marketing and digital industries. The results were based on multiple qualitative and quantitative factors such as company experience, industry recognition, client roster, client interviews and overall market presence.

“Both large corporations and mom-and-pops need a strong local search presence to generate leads and sales from surrounding areas and maintain a positive online reputation,” stated Tim Clarke, Research Manager at Clutch. “The firms listed in this report have all demonstrated success with local SEO and PPC campaigns, which have generated overwhelmingly positive returns for clients.”

Local Search Masters appreciates the recognition and we look forward to continuing to provide excellent SEO and pay-per-click advertising services to our clients.

About Local Search Masters

Local Search Masters (LSM) is a digital marketing agency headquartered in Nashville, TN that specializes in organic SEO, local search marketing, paid-per-click advertising, social media management, online reputation management and franchise development marketing for franchise systems, local businesses and large corporations with multiple locations. For additional information about our agency, contact us today!

Local Search Masters
631 2nd Ave South #LL-D
Nashville, TN 37215
615-346-5551
localsearchmasters.com

LSM Speaks at Vanderbilt University

LSM Discusses Search Engine Marketing at Vanderbilt

Cherrie Clark is a professor at Vanderbilt University who works in, and is the director of, the Program of Managerial Studies. One of the classes Professor Clark is teaching this semester is ‘Principles of Marketing,’ an undergraduate course where students learn how to market for non-profits and for businesses. Throughout the course of the semester, students have explored various marketing topics, including pay-per-click-advertising on Google and organic search engine optimization (SEO).

Matt Job, Chief Marketing Officer of LSM, was asked to visit Professor Clark’s class on April 7th, 2015, to present important information about the world of search engine marketing discussing topics such as:

Matt Job at LSM discusses SEO and SEM best practices to students at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, TN1. The breakdown of Google’s search engine result pages (SERPs) and how the format changes across devices and search queries (mobile vs. desktop, organic vs. paid, national vs. local)

2. Why businesses should consider investing in organic SEO

3. Why certain businesses should consider advertising via Google’s pay-per-click (PPC) advertising platforms (Google Search Network, Google Display Network, Google Shopper Network)

4. Best practices for SEO optimizing a website to increase its positioning on important, non-branded search queries

5. How to develop efficient Google PPC and remarketing campaigns to optimize cost-per-conversion rates

Matt delved into the specifics of SEM and SEO, stressing the importance of both and providing examples while also creating a dialogue for students to ask several questions and express interest. Given the growing importance of companies needing to market themselves online, the discussion provided students with a foundation of digital marketing knowledge that they can utilize in internship and full-time positions

Vanderbilt Students enjoyed Local Search Masters' digital marketing presentation

For more information about Local Search Masters you can visit http://localsearchmasters.com.

Why Google’s Algorithm Update Might Affect Franchise Sales

Does your Franchise Recruitment Website need to be Mobile Friendly?

LSM’s Matthew Job was recently featured in Entrepreneur for his article “Will Google’s Algorithm Update Affect Your Franchise Sales?” The article, which came out April 1st, addresses the upcoming Google algorithm that will expand the importance of mobile-friendly factors in order to determine search engine result page (SERP) rankings. A Google representative stated that this update will have a “significant impact,” meaning franchises without mobile-friendly sites need to consider making adjustments.

Here are 8 key takeaways from the article on what the algorithm update means for franchise sales:

1. The percentage of prospective franchisees using smartphones to research and contact franchise opportunities nearly doubled from 23% to 42%.

Research Franchise Opportunities on a Mobile Device

2. Because more people are using smartphones to research franchise opportunities, franchisors should offer mobile-friendly information websites (sometimes known as ‘franchise recruitment websites’).

3. If franchises don’t have mobile-friendly sites when the algorithm updates go live, their sites’ organic rankings on lucrative, non-branded search queries are likely to drop. Conversely, mobile-friendly franchise information sites might see a rise in their organic rankings. This drop in the rankings will likely lead to a decline in quality traffic to the franchise info site.  

Mobile Friendly Franchise Information Websites

4. Currently, only 17% of franchise information websites are mobile-friendly!

5. If a franchise recruitment website is not mobile-friendly, it may be hindering its ability to generate franchise lead opportunities for the franchisor.

6. To help determine if your franchise info site has helped your franchise generate leads in the past, speak with your current franchisees and see how many viewed your franchise recruitment site , as well as a few of your competitors’ franchise recruitment websites, on a mobile device at some point during their research process.

7. This mobile-friendly test from Google will analyze a URL and report if the page has a mobile-friendly design. Check it to see if your site is mobile-friendly.

8. Visit Google’s Webmaster Tools Help website to review ways you can optimize your website for mobile devices.

Summary

More and more people are using their mobile devices to browse the Internet and research buying decisions, big and small. Review the mobile web presence of your franchise and, if you think it’s going to hinder your ability to generate franchise leads, consider making your site(s) mobile-friendly.

 

6 Reasons to Consider Purchasing an Enhanced Profile on Yelp

 

Yelp logo

Yelp Enhanced Profiles for Business Owners & Franchisees

If you’re a business owner or franchisee who’s looking to generate more local customers online, you should think about getting an enhanced profile on Yelp. Millions of people are searching Yelp everyday to find new businesses and comment on the ones that they’ve used. Rather than ignoring the potential customers who are browsing on Yelp and hoping that only positive reviews will be posted/highlighted on your profile, you can harness Yelp’s marketing opportunities and take charge through an enhanced profile. Here are a few reasons why business owners should consider purchasing enhanced profiles on Yelp.

 

Removal of Competitor Ads 

You can trim down the distractions on your profile so that visitors will focus only on you and what you can offer them. The enhanced profile is the only profile-upgrade option to offer your business more attention by removing all ads from your competitors: advertisements that automatically show up on everyone else’s free business profiles.

 

Professional Look 

Since the enhanced-profile listing looks more professional and has more display features, your listing will immediately stand out from other Yelp search results that your potential customers are likely to see when searching for your business on Yelp.  

 

More Photos

It’s a well-known fact that people spend more time looking at Yelp pages with photos than those without photos. Imagine how much more attracted visitors will be your business when they get to see an entire slideshow of your most-enticing photos, and the enhanced profile lets you upload an unlimited amount of rotating photos. Plus, you get to arrange the photos in exactly the order that you want. This powerful advertising feature does more than just make your potential customers feel more welcome to visit you; it also can give them a virtual walk-through of what they could look forward to experiencing at your business. Thus, the more time they spend visualizing what awaits them at your business, the more likely they are to pay you a visit and spread the word about the franchise that you’ve worked so hard to create.

 

More Unique Information

First impressions are everything. Before people dive into reading the reviews of your business, it’s important to have the first word by adding your own personal ‘From the business’ section to give an accurate description of what makes your location different from other, similar businesses in the same marketplace, i.e. new menu options, in-store discounts and other events. Your top keyword-search terms should also appear at least once in this description in order to help “SEO optimize” your profile.

 

Enhanced Dashboard

Enjoy access to the must-have business owner dashboard in your enhanced profile, which analyzes lots of your Yelp activity for you. This important data shows you exactly how many people are seeing your page so that you can see if your latest profile and advertising changes are really working or not. Enhanced profiles also get exclusive messaging options that let you respond to your Yelp reviews in private or publicly on the site, which is a critical tool when it comes to digital marketing for franchisees and independent business owners.

This feature is the best way to handle any negative reviews that you may receive on Yelp because visitors get to hear a little of your side of the story and see how professionally you can handle disagreements. The business-owner dashboard also lets you share different levels of access for various employees in your company, so you have the flexibility to assign separate people to handle each aspect of the dashboard as needed. Plus, if you’re a business with multiple locations or a multi-unit franchisee, the enhanced profile will also let you track all of your locations from a single business account in real time.

 

Account Manager Support

Enhanced profiles provide you access to Yelp personnel who can help you and your business get the most out of Yelp by 1) helping you update your Call-To-Action button 2) change and upload more photos 3) get constructive advice on how to respond to reviews 4) assign access to different users, and 5) provide advice on how to best market your business on Yelp.

 

Summary

For many businesses who are currently trying to generate more local customers, Yelp is an important tool. Its listings will show up highly in the search results for both branded and non-branded keywords (examples: “Massage Envy Spa San Diego reviews” and “massages San Diego CA”). Reviews listed on their site will make or break people’s purchasing decisions. That being the case, franchisees and independent business owners should consider purchasing Yelp enhanced profiles for their respective locations.

For more information about utilizing Yelp enhanced profiles you can contact Yelp or contact LSM today.