From Small Business Trends Presents: Top 10 Tea Franchise Opportunities

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17 Hair-Raising Salon Marketing Ideas

If you’re anything like me, it takes a lot of time, effort, and risk to find a new salon to trust with my hair. If you’re anything like my lovely colleague, Allen, you’d rather shave your own head than spend your time trying to find the perfect salon. I have such a hard time finding a good hairdresser that I often travel back to Philadelphia to get my hair cut (yes, 6.5 hours for a haircut. I’m insane.)

But if you’re running a salon, you want to stand out from the crowd to hook shoppers like me! Here are some marketing ideas to employ to grow your customer base and stay on top of your marketing game.

Fun Marketing ideas for Salons

1. Offer Referral Discounts

Personally, I love this one. Once I find a hairdresser or manicurist that I love, I’m apt to recommend her/him to all my friends. Why not give your customers a little bonus for doing your advertising for free and sending new clients your way? I recommend an email or postcard with a nice note, “Thanks for referring us to your friend, Jane! We’re so pleased you thought of us, that we want you to know we’re thinking of you, too. Here is $15 off your next visit.”

2. Loyalty Programs or Punch Cards

Like referral discounts, it’s always nice to recognize great clients. My hairdresser has been cutting my hair long enough to remember when my sister got married, what business my brother started, and how my aunt’s broken leg is healing. Likewise, I love to hear about her two sweet babies, her husband’s Penn State obsession, and her crazy family stories. Show your clients that you not only hear their stories—you look forward to them! For every 10 visits, give a discount for the 11th. Or, if they’ve been coming to you long enough for the prices of services to rise, consider giving them the original price. Customer loyalty is hugely important to any business, but salons can easily capitalize on it. 

3. Yelp

If you aren’t on yelp, you probably aren’t going to draw in new business from millennials. It’s simple to claim your business, add photos, and respond to customer reviews. You can also offer discounts to customers to who check in at your location or package deals, i.e. manicure and pedicure for 10% off.

Marketing on Yelp for Hair Salons

4. Geotargeted Ads

Whether you utilize Facebook or AdWords, geotargeted ads should be your best friend. You don’t want to be fielding appointment requests from a client in California when your salon is in New York! Need help setting it up? We have great guides on AdWords and Facebook targeting options.

5. Mobile Ads

Like geo targeting, mobile ads can be hugely beneficial—especially with AdWords new bidding features that allows users to bid differently on desktop and mobile.

6. Show off your Skilled Staff

I love sitting in the waiting area at a salon and looking at magazines for ideas.  I also love being able to point to any picture and know my stylist can get it done! Instead of placing magazines on the table, try creating a binder of styles and cuts that your own staff has completed—maybe a collection of shots from your Instagram!

Skilled Salon Staff

7. Use Hashtags to Pitch Your Salons for Events

I don’t know about you, but I hate wedding hashtags. They’re annoying, usually mildly obnoxious, but totally useful. It’s so nice to have all your wedding photos easily findable through a hashtag! The bonus for salons? You can use them to be proactive. With so many couples announcing their #engagements or planning bachelor/bachelorette parties on Instagram and Facebook, complete with a wedding hashtag, you can be proactive! Simply search for engagements, find the owner of the hashtag, and slide into their direct messages with a sales pitch.

Instagram Hashtags

8. Post Coupons Locally

When I was in high school, we received daily planners at the beginning of the year with a schedule for the year and various coupons from local businesses strategically placed throughout the planner. Every year, all the boys rented tuxes for prom from the same place, and all the girls got the hair and nails done at the same local salon (there were two locations, but still a huge crowd). It’s a great way to capitalize on a big money-making event—and get involved in your community!

9. Allow Online Reservations

This is huge! I usually look for new hair salons when I’m burning time during my commute, when it’s probably not appropriate to speak on the phone. And, speaking to real people to make an appointment is overrated. If an online reservation system is off the table, consider adding an email address to your contact info that people could correspond with to set up an appointment.

Online Booking Marketing in Salons

10. Collect Email Addresses

This is such a simple and powerful marketing tactic. Getting an email address is like getting keys to the kingdom—you can use them for appointment reminders, newsletter updates, referral bonuses, and remarketing lists on Facebook.

11. Capitalize on Instagram

One of my guilty pleasures is watching videos on Instagram. Usually they are of people making delicious food, but also beauty tutorials! I love seeing someone’s hair chopped short and dyed purple, or extensions put in, or nail accessories expertly glued on. Use your skills and record your clients; with permission, of course. Even better, have your clients share the videos on their personal pages to attract their friends to your salon!

Hair Salon Transformation

12. …and Facebook

There is a handy-dandy “share” button on Instagram that allows you to share all your testimonials and videos on both platforms! If you have longer-form tips, try starting with Facebook since users are more open to spending more time on a single post. You should also try out carousel ads! A perfect way to showcase your work and appointments. Facebook advertising allows you to target your audience by interest—try targeting an audience with a birthday coming with an ad that reads, “Treat Yourself!” or someone who is engaged with an ad that reads, “Let Us Pamper You for Your Big Day!”

13. Offer Flash Sales on Twitter

One of my favorite salon marketing ideas is a flash sale! Twitter is the perfect place to advertise this. Send out a tweet, “$10 haircut for anyone willing to let our best new addition show off her skills!” and give it away to the first respondent. 

14. Birthday Promotions

Who doesn’t love to be pampered on their birthday? By asking your clientele for their birth date or month, you can send out a birthday promotion—a discounted blowout or makeup session, maybe. Another take on this is to celebrate your salon’s birthday, with a week or month of a certain promotion.

Salon Birthday Marketing

15. Carry Business Cards

Salon Marketing 101: be your own greatest advertisement. Ever have a stranger compliment your hair or nails on the subway or while shopping? Not only is it flattering, it is the perfect opportunity to say, “Thank you! I did it myself, here is my business card if you’re interested in the same treatment!”

16. Produce Video Content

This may sound silly, but content can be anything from silly blog posts about nightmare makeovers and rushed events to tutorial videos. If your staff is staying up to date with new trends and constantly getting new certifications, use their knowledge to become an expert for your audience. Something as simple as “How to Properly Trim Your Bangs” will get your name out there—and you can welcome anyone who needs further assistance with that bang trim.

17. Host Parties

This might be the most fun salon marketing tip! Hosting pamper parties; for charity, for a birthday or bachelorette; can be a great opportunity to bond with your clients and get the word out about your salon.

Have any salon marketing tips that we missed? Let us know! 

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PBNs, HTTPS, and Other Acronyms: Weekly Forum Update

The SEO world has more acronyms than you can shake a well-optimized stick at, and our communities are talking about some of the biggest ones this week.

On Cre8asiteforums, we’ll talk about social media and compassion, Amazon’s strange new .bot TLD, and lending a hand to an old friend.

From WebmasterWorld, we have stories about vanishing image search traffic and the difficulties involved with switching from HTTP to HTTPS. Then there are three fascinating discussions from SEO Chat – one of them about PBNs!

A New TLD From Amazon Registry Services: .bot!

They even created a new website just for the announcement, Believe it or not, Amazon says that they’re “excited” about this launch. Personally, I can’t quite see why.

But some Cre8asiteforums members like iamlost seem to be implying that it could be a honeypot. Perhaps spammers will seek out .bot domains as cheap ways to spam…and then we can ban them en masse!

Or perhaps ban everyone except those who use .bots for scraping? It promises to be interesting to follow, at the least.

PBNs in 2017

Yet another SEO Chat thread where I wish Fathom were still with us. In this thread, newbies and senior members alike are discussing the risks of PBNs and whether they’re still effective and relevant.

Prof.stan makes the biggest point –

“You can easily be caught by Google and your site will be penalized.”

KernelPanic adds that

“Yes! PBNs work, and they are a great way to game the system. Build it, work it, profit off it but understand, eventually you will get caught.” Chedders writes,

“For crash and burn sites I have to agree with KernelPanic here, you can see fantastic growth in SERPs but I am afraid it’s not a long term practice.”

Of course, it’s also important to make sure that anyone you build a PBN for understands these risks. The worst part about this technique is that a lot of newbie freelancers seem to think that it’s flawless – they build PBNs and use them for their clients…and the clients are the ones who are devastated and destroyed in the end.

At any rate, there are lots of great posts in this thread – and some great old links to posts from Fathom, who had a great deal of personal experience with PBNs crashing and burning.

Is Image Search Traffic Vanishing?

WebmasterWorld member Archbob writes that, earlier this week,

“…traffic from,, and other international image searches just all of a sudden disappeared.”

Ordinarily, you might be inclined to brush this off as individual experience – but several other WebmasterWorld members are seeing the same thing. Lake offers a potential explanation:

“Someone mentioned that they rolled out the new image search design to those countries? (as in, they used to show the actual page vs making users click a button now)…”

Could that be the cause? Read this thread and find out!

Google and Defamation/Fake Reporting Websites

Besides fake news, which is the news du jour, there are a lot of infamous defamation and scam websites out there. You probably know the kind – they rank for someone’s name and picture, and call them something unsavory.

They offer to remove these listings for a price, and that’s how they survive. Why doesn’t Google just get rid of all these awful places?

Chedders writes that,

“Google generally don’t take a stance on content, it’s an algorithmic ranking so providing they do their SEO better than others then they will rank. Google only tend to take these sites out if there is legal or moral reasons to do so…”

This is a pretty relevant and charged topic these days but I think our senior members and newbies handled it well and had a great discussion! Read, enjoy, and add your two cents!

Lend a Hand to SEO Pioneer Ammon Johns!

Besides helping Kim set up Cre8asiteforums back in the early 2000s, Johns is well known in SEO circles for his great generosity in helping newbies get on their feet.

Some of the biggest names in SEO today owe their success to those first steps that Johns helped them take! He’s in a tough situation these days – friends of his and our communities are working on a GoFundMe, which I encourage you to donate to!

Was There an Algorithm Update on February 7?

From the Threadwatch rumor mill, we have news of a potential algorithm update on February 7. Google’s only comment so far has been “No comment,” so we don’t know for sure.

But SEOs across our communities seem to believe that something happened.

Lessons in a Tweet

We’re so focused on SEO, business, making money, and fighting for influence that sometimes I think we lose sight of the really human aspects of social media.

We probably also have lost sight of social media’s capability for compassion. Iamlost found a great example of an important Tweet – one that represents history and calls for it to be remembered. Check it out in this thread.

Search Console Refusing to Update HTTPS Status

Every time you read a thread about an HTTPS migration, you think you’ve seen it all. But there must be billions of different website configurations out there – a holdover from the “Wild West” days perhaps. Sometimes these configurations represent very sticky problems for anyone who wants to take the site to HTTPS.

That’s what happened to this WebmasterWorld member. They got a little more than they bargained for, but you can reap the rewards by reading some of the top tips shared by senior members!

YouTube Strategy on SEO Chat

Let’s end this week’s update with a thread so nice, we had to recommend it twice! YouTube strategy is something that we don’t get to talk about that often. It still seems like it is a mystery to many of our members.

But Prof.stan brought some great tips to the table this time, and it seems to have attracted more great tips over time! Dive into this thread and add your own tips, if it please you!

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7 Steps to Crafting an SMB Facebook Marketing Strategy (and Why You Need One)

A Facebook marketing strategy is a critical component of any social media marketing plan and can help small and medium-size businesses operating on tight budgets. …

The post 7 Steps to Crafting an SMB Facebook Marketing Strategy (and Why You Need One) appeared first on Vivial | Local Online Marketing Solutions | Local SEO.

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4 Super-Effective Content Syndication Strategies for Bloggers

Syndicated content sometimes gets a really bad rap in our industry.

content marketing syndication

Well, I’ve got a confession to make.

content syndication strategy

You should, too – and here’s why.

What Is Content Syndication?

First, a quick definition: Content syndication is a method of republishing content on other sites in order to reach a broader audience. Syndicated content not only increases your reach and brand awareness, it also builds links and can help drive more traffic to your original article.

What’s So Great About Content Syndication?

You need to syndicate your content. You’d be crazy not to.

Most of the biggest and most influential sites on the web feature syndicated content, including the New York Times, the Huffington Post, and CNN.

The web is so big and so noisy. It isn’t reasonable to think that all the people you want to reach will read your story just because you published it on your own blog.

Syndicating your content gets your blog posts (either the full article or a shortened version of it) in front of a different audience who otherwise would have never known it existed.

Content syndication is a very low-cost (usually no-cost) way to make your content go further. It’s much cheaper and quicker than writing a new blog post for a third-party site, either on the same topic or on something completely different.

You know where you’ll get with that strategy? Burned out.

Don’t Forget the Marketing in Content Marketing

Some experts may have warned you that syndicating content is a bad idea because you’ll end up getting dinged by a Google penalty.

This is nonsense.

Google won’t penalize you for syndicating content. At worst, any duplicate versions of your article might be filtered out of the search results.

Syndication isn’t about SEO. It’s a content marketing tactic – emphasis on the marketing. Because this is how marketing really works:

how to syndicate content

Here are the four types of content syndication bloggers need to know about.

1. Syndicate Third-Party Content on Your Blog

As a publisher you can ask another website for permission to feature their content on your blog.

Ideally, your blog should contain about 10% syndicated content. Even though it may not be original, it’s always a great idea to feature helpful content that benefits your readers and is worth their time.

If you run a multiple author blog, you know how challenging it can be to get fantastic authors to commit to writing a post for you. Anyone who is truly a big deal influencer in your industry usually won’t have much free time to spend writing a unique blog post just for you.

Asking to feature an influencer’s existing content is a much more reasonable ask. They will probably feel honored to be asked by you.

For example, WordStream has featured syndicated content from some amazing experts in the past, like Jeff Weiner, CEO of LinkedIn; Blake Irving, CEO of GoDaddy; Dharmesh Shah, founder of HubSpot; and Jeff Haden of Inc.

Also, don’t forget to syndicate yourself!

If you contribute guest blog posts to third-party sites, republish those on your own blog. Many of the guest posts I’ve written have been republished on the WordStream blog, linking back to the original. Just remember to seek permission from the site you write for – some publishers ask for a period of exclusivity, usually a few weeks or longer.

content syndication tips

Adding syndicated content instantly diversifies your content. It brings something new and valuable to your audience, even if it isn’t new to the web.

2. Syndicate Your Blog Content on Other Websites

As a publisher you can syndicate your content to be featured on other partner websites.

For example, several posts that were first published on the WordStream blog were later featured on top search industry sites like Small Business Trends and Social Media Today.

These deals usually come in one of two flavors:

  • All Syndicated Content: You create no original content for your partner. Your partner simply republishes your content.
  • A Mix of Syndicated and Original Content: You agree to a split that’s acceptable to both sides. For instance, one month you give them syndicated content, the next it’s an original piece. Or if you agree to produce 1-4 posts per month, then at least one must be original. 

Usually publishers are willing to make deals provided the quality is there. After all, they know you’re busy – and hey, it’s free content!

However, those publishers usually will only honor the deal as long as the content you’re giving them performs up to their expectations. It won’t be worth their time and effort if your syndicated content doesn’t generate any traffic or engagement.

3. Publishing Content on Sites That Syndicate Their Content

You can also get your content syndicated by becoming a regular contributor for a website that syndicates its content.

For example, I’m a columnist at Inc. magazine. So that means I’m publishing to a content syndicator.

Inc.’s content also ends up on major partner sites like Business Insider, Slate, and TIME.

4. Self-Service Syndication

You can also syndicate your own content.

Medium is a great place to do some self-service syndication. There are lots of great reasons why you should publish on Medium. Here are 10:

why syndicate content on medium

Also be sure to read my post on optimizing your Medium posts.

It’s also relatively easy to get an author ID and get published on the Huffington Post. They don’t really check your credentials. The conversations pretty much goes like this: “I want to write for you.” “OK, here’s your log-in.”

You can also post your articles on LinkedIn. Every time you do, everyone you’re connected to will receive a notification. Check out these 11 ways you can hack the LinkedIn Pulse algorithm.

Business2Community is another good place for self-service syndication. Stuff that gets published there can get syndicated on large sites like Yahoo.

Content Repurposing? There’s No Purpose!

Some publications don’t like syndicated content. They want to publish 100 percent original content.

But wait. They will publish your story. You just have to provide a completely different write up about the exact same topic.


Content repurposing (a.k.a., content spinning)? Really?

content syndication how to

I hate content repurposing (and I cannot lie). Can we just be adults here and think about this rationally?

What if the first blog post was brilliant – a total unicorn that got tons of traffic and engagement? If something performs magically well on one site, then the odds are that it will also perform well in syndication.

Or perhaps you want to promote a new infographic you created on some relevant publications. Does the world really need four completely unique write-ups to accompany that same infographic?

The only time you should repurpose or rewrite an article is if it’s for a different audience. For instance, maybe you need to “dumb it down” for a less tech-savvy audience.

Repurposing your posts into other posts is silly. Would you ask Jerry Seinfeld to re-edit all his old “Seinfeld” episodes (that are worth billions of dollars as they aired) to give them a more unique spin?

Go Big With Content Syndication

content syndication guide

Content syndication in all its forms is incredibly valuable. It can be a win-win for any blogger.

Help your content go further with these four types of syndication:

  • Publish syndicated content from other relevant publications on your blog.
  • Syndicate your blog content to other relevant publications.
  • Write original content for a relevant site in your space that syndicates its content to partners.
  • Republish your blog content Medium and LinkedIn to help it reach a wider audience.

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From Building a “Near Me” Search Strategy for Better SEO

With a steady rise in “near me” search queries, adding a “near me” search strategy to your local SEO puts your business in front of customers ready to buy.

Over a year ago Google announced that search queries with local qualifiers such as “near me” had doubled in just one year.  More recently Google stated “Mobile makes up 88% of all “near me” searches, with those mobile searches growing at 146% year over year.” This rapid increase highlights how critical these hyper-local searches are to your local SEO.

near me search google trendsTHE GOOD NEWS: “Near Me” Search Benefits Consumers and Businesses

When consumers have an immediate need for something, whether it’s information or to buy a product or service, they conduct searches with local qualifiers like “nearby” or “near me.”  Google calls these times when customers are ready to take action, micro-moments and I-want-to-go-moments.  These moments are such a big deal to Google that prompts you with “near me” suggestions before you can finish typing what you are looking for.

near me search micro momentsImage Source: Think With Google

You can optimize your website to show up during these crucial micro-moments.  The best part is that it isn’t hard.  By adding a few “near me” specific tactics to a strong local SEO plan

THE BAD NEWS: “Near Me” Search Results are NOT Ranked by Proximity

Just being closest to a “near me” search user does not give your business a significant boost in ranking higher in search results.  It’s natural to assume that proximity would be a top ranking factor but Google’s secret algorithms are designed to give you the best results, not just the most technically correct.

Search queries are treated more and more like conversations with a helpful know-it-all guide.  If you asked a long-time local where the nearest bakery was, if he wanted to be helpful he would tell you where the nearest “good” or “decent” bakery was, knowing he had never heard anything good about the one closest to you.

near me search screenshotThat’s why building a near me search strategy needs to be part of your SEO.  Taking the simple steps needed to let search engines know exactly where you are and that you are the best option for local search results ensures your business shows up at the top of near me searches.

Building a “Near Me” Search Strategy for Better SEO

There continues to be a lot of chatter about how “near me” searches are trending, but a better term for what actually happening would be GROWING.  Optimizing your website for these searches by building a “near me” search strategy improves your ranking with local search users.

Your next new customer is looking to spend money today.  Add the following activities to your local SEO gets your business in front of that hyper-qualified audience.

Have a Mobile-Friendly Website

Duh, right? But I state the obvious to stress that you have to do better than just shrinking your desktop content and ads to fit a smaller screen.  Using a responsive design that optimizes your website for mobile viewing and navigation isn’t just good for “near me” searches but helps your SEO on every level.

Optimize Your Google My Business Listing

Your Google My Business Listing is vital to your success on the Google network.  This is how you show up on maps.  This is where customers leave reviews, and you get those wonderful star ratings.  This is how you get into the local 3-pack.  Google My Business is where everything begins.  You need to optimize your Google My Business listing, ensure your NAP is correct, and get those reviews that make you stand out in search results.

Consistent NAP on Website, Business Listings, and Citations

With “near me” searches it is even more critical than before that your NAP (name, address and phone number) be accurate and consistent across the internet.  Your NAP should be on your website’s main pages.  Additionally, manage your business listings to ensure that when Google crawls your site and other sites they use to cross-check your information your business is listed and each listing and citation is consistent.  If not, Google won’t trust that you are nearby a person’s location when they are doing a “near me” search.

Get More Reviews Posted Online

Encourage customer to review your business by clicking “Write a Review” on your Google My Business page. This is a simple and factual statement: The more reviews on your Google business page and the better the rating of those reviews, the higher you are going to rank in local search results.

The more people talk about you online, the easier your business is to find. Customer Review Management is a real thing, it is vital to the success of your business, and you need to be doing it yesterday. Have a plan and process in place to ask customers for reviews and make it easy for them to post the best of your reviews on Google.

Add “Near Me” and Backlinks with City/State Anchor Text NATURALLY

Probably the easiest thing to do on this list is to add “near me” to the title tags of your location pages.  You should also add “near me” with top keyword variants into the text of your web pages and the anchor text of internal links to your location pages.

It has been shown that having some backlinks with your city and state in the anchor text correlates with higher rankings in “near me” searches.  The key word here is “naturally.”  Meaning, don’t stuff your content with city/state keywords to create dozens of backlinks.

Near Me Search Optimization is Key

According to Google, 82% of smartphone users consult their smartphone when researching an upcoming purchase. If your business is not showing up high in mobile “near me” searches you are losing valuable customers to the competition.  Take these steps to build your “near me” search strategy and improve

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Zach_Color_Trans_small_CroppedAbout The Author

Zach Anderson is the co-founder of Reputation Loop (helping small businesses grow by generating customer feedback and online reviews) who loves online marketing and golf.

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5 Luxury Marketing Strategies to Increase Conversions (At The Right Price)

There’s a reason Gucci doesn’t do infomercials for tiger print duffels. That Equinox doesn’t offer a discount for January first’s newly health-obsessed. That anthropomorphic Hamsters break dance in front of Kia Souls instead of Range Rovers.

Advertising for luxury brands tends to focus on, well, luxury. The happiness they inspire. The quality. The sheer opulence that becomes a piece of one’s life when he or she buys free-range leave-in conditioner infused with dolphin tears, or an ornate bottle of some top-shelf botanical cordial. 

luxury brand marketing on adwords

Whether you’re storyboarding a TV spot or building out an ad group, your target audience needs to feel as though your product or service is a physical manifestation of luxury.

Now, this sort of strategy (creating the appearance that your product embodies some specific quality or trait) is not exclusive to luxury brands. Taco Bell, for example, is most certainly not a luxury brand, but their marketing efforts (and new product development), are wholly focused on the late-night munchies-sufferers among us. The language and images used in Taco Bell’s marketing materials speak to these consumers; there’s very little pomp, just an often-entertaining reminder that there’s no better place to shove eleven cheap tacos made out of Doritos and meatstuff into your face hole.

non luxury brand display ad

The ad above exemplifies this perfectly. Cheesy neon signs. Colloquial language. An assortment of various corn or flour vessels oozing tasty mysteries.

Now that you’re sufficiently hungry (or repulsed) let’s switch gears and refocus on advertising for luxury brands. Check out this text ad for Rolex, arguably the world’s most recognizable luxury watch company: 

luxury brand paid search text ad

Notice the language used. “Timeless” and “luxury” and “performance” and “prestige.” There’s an undeniable sense that a Rolex is opulence incarnate and an implication that if you manage to wrap one around your wrist, you are elite. 

Now, you may not be as recognizable as Rolex, but we can show you how to leverage the same tactics and then some (I’m looking at you, notably bland CTA) so that you can use PPC to grow and market your luxury brand.

Luxury Marketing Strategy #1: Account-Wide Negative Keywords

The first, and easiest, strategy for marketing your luxury brand is classic “addition by subtraction.” You’re probably already incorporating negative keywords into your optimization routine, but did you know you can save time by uploading them at the account level?

adding bulk negatives adwords

Account-level negative keywords are a simple addition to your AdWords efforts; all you need is a CSV file loaded with negative keywords. From there, you simply upload the file in the Bulk Upload tab of the Shared Library and then apply it to as many campaigns as you’d like. Doing so has a handful of benefits, but the most important for marketing luxury goods and services is the ability to weed out unqualified traffic.

Think about it.

Say you sell shoes hand cobbled by the finest artisans in all of Montana. While the keyword “shoes” will certainly yield traffic, and some of those searchers may very well be interested in buying your exceptional kicks, the overwhelming majority of that traffic falls outside of your target demographic. This becomes even more of an issue as you begin to consider keywords with modifiers. “Cheap,” “sale,” and the dreaded “free” are all words that, when appended to a query, ostensibly eliminate a searcher as a prospect. 

Account-wide negative keywords ensure you never bid on terms you have no interest in paying for (on purpose or accidentally).

Luxury Marketing Strategy #2: Make Bing a Priority

For the majority of search marketers, AdWords is the end all be all. Bing and other networks (Yahoo Gemini among them) tend to exist in their arsenal complementarity, if at all.  Generally speaking, this is a bad idea. For luxury brands, it’s a cardinal sin.

According to Bing, nearly one third of its audience has a household income of $100,000 or more.

bing user average household income luxury brand marketing strategy

What does that 30% mean, exactly?

160 million unique searchers. 5 billion monthly searches. But perhaps most important to your business is the fact that Bing allows you to reach 59 million people who aren’t reached on Google.

Yes, for the most part clicks on Bing are cheaper than they are on AdWords. This is awesome. But the network’s real value is the fact that you can get an additional 118 million eyeballs (a third of which have are attached to six-figure incomes) on your luxury goods.

Luxury Marketing Strategy #3: Elevate Your Ad Copy

Expanded Text Ads are now our reality, and there’s never been a better time to market your high-end product using the power of paid search. With all that extra space comes the ability to differentiate yourself from the rest of the SERP with language instead of relying solely on brand recognition. After all, even when you’re bidding on branded keywords, there’s a good chance you’ll be competing with third party distributors and your direct competitors. The copy you use in your text ads will be the difference between earning a prospect’s click and watching them scroll on by.

But what does better ad copy look like? Great question! 

eta copywriting tips for luxury marketing

As you can see in the column on the left, STA (what used to be called Standard Text Ads) placed tight restrictions on your ability to say anything compelling in your ad copy. How can you stand out from the competition when everyone’s pigeonholed into using the same five-ish sentence fragments? Off the top of my head, hiring a commercially motivated haiku writer was the only plausible solution.

Today, though, with the addition of a second headline and more space in the description (plus the URL pathways), you can parlay your brand’s unique sales proposition without truncation. You can wrap it in enticing, alluring, wholly irresistible copy. Don’t just tell your prospects to buy now: tell them why they have no other choice.

Check out this text ad for Chanel. What do you notice?

chanel luxury brand ppc ad

In the good ‘ol days, this is an ad that would fly in the face of best practices. Today, though, I’d say it represents an interesting A/B test. Now, are this ad’s headlines great? No. They lean so heavily on brand that they actually miss out on an opportunity to say more about what makes their products so luxurious. But, what I do find interesting is the fact that the CTA ask the prospect to “Discover” instead of “Buy Now!!!!!!” Chanel isn’t a series of expensive products you can purchase at will: Chanel is a world to envelop yourself in.

Ready to buy a swanky handbag yet?

NOTE: With the advent of IF functions and other modifiers, it’s even easier to serve irresistible, hyper-relevant ad copy.

Luxury Marketing Strategy #4: The Obvious (Income-Based Geo)

You’ve written ads to catch the eyes of affluent searchers. You’ve negated keyword modifiers that imply discounted pricing. Now let’s dive into income-based geo targeting.

This is another truly phenomenal way to cut wasted spend and ensure the ads you’re paying for end up in front of the right people. How do you make that happen? Simple.

In the “Location Groups” tab you’ll find three different options:

  • “Places of interest”- Eh.
  • “My locations”- Good if you’ve got brick and mortars.
  • “Demographics”- We have a winner! 

The demographics tab focuses on just one thing: approximate household income.

adwords income based targeting for high income prospects

According to Google, income-based location targeting is “based on publicly available data from the US Internal Revenue Service (IRS), advertisers are able to target ads to certain areas according to their average household income.”

When you created a customer profile, detailing your ideal consumer, average household income was probably something you considered. It’s part of how you determine what you sell and how you sell it. Now you can leverage IRS data to help you to discover and advertise to these fine folks.

And the best part? You can layer income-based targeting with your other location targeting for maximal effect. This means you don’t have to wholly exclude areas that fall outside of those designated as having higher household incomes; you can create separate campaigns (ensuring your budget is skewed towards geos in which the likelihood of your ideal prospects living there is greater) or just use bid adjustments.

Don’t want to take my word for it?

A Managed Services strategist at WordStream, Jack Taylor, used income-based targeting in a high-end financial services client’s account to decrease the cost per lead by nearly 41% in a single month. He focused on affluent searchers, a small, niche audience that he deemed most likely to convert on this site, and used heavy bid adjustments to prioritize traffic from the top 50% of earners. The best part? Their conversion rate has improved because the new traffic is highly qualified.

Luxury Marketing Strategy #5: Nurture Paid Traffic with A Personal Touch

Remarketing is good. Dynamic Remarketing is better.

Consider two scenarios. We’ll call the first “Regular ‘ol sneakers” and the second “Dayyyyumn.”

Regular ‘ol sneakers

regular remarketing ad

Yeah, some of these sneakers are straight fire (I’m looking at you, third pair from the right). But does this remarketing ad convey “luxury” in any way?

I would say no.

It makes me think of the brand, sure. It makes me stoked on their shoes. Heck, I may even roll over to the New Balance site once this sentence is finished to peruse their wares. As a remarketing ad, this is okay.

But it doesn’t convey luxury. It doesn’t make me need anything.

Let’s juxtapose this against a remarketing ad for a comparable, luxury product.


new balance luxury brand dynamic remarketing ad

This shoe is a brand collaboration between New Balance and Ball and Buck (a Boston-based menswear emporium). It’s hand-made in America from premium materials. It is, in a word, incredible.

What do you notice about the ad?

It uses a clean, product-centric image to shine a spotlight on the leisure sneaker. It shows me only the shoe I looked at, and it follows me around, convincing me bit by bit that I should make the purchase.

This, my friends, is the difference between regular Remarketing and Dynamic Remarketing. Simply put, Dynamic Remarketing is a way for you to show prospects who have visited your site exactly what they looked at. While this is a strategy employed by many brands in even more markets, I find it’s especially useful if you’re selling a product or service at a high price point. It creates a high level of familiarity with the consumer (and provided you don’t go nuts with impressions, it does so in a way that isn’t creepy).

The lesson here? Dynamic Remarketing is the perfect complement to your paid search efforts (and a cost-effective way to build brand awareness).

About the Author

Allen Finn is a content marketing specialist and the reigning fantasy football champion at WordStream. He enjoys couth menswear, dank eats, and the dulcet tones of the Wu-Tang Clan. If you know what’s good for you, you’ll follow him on LinkedIn and Twitter.

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