Category Archives: Chicago Pet Video

How To Do Facebook Hashtags

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Hashtags have been on Facebook for a few months now so it is important to understand the RIGHT way to use them. But, before you can use them you should know how they work.

Hashtags are created when you type a word or phrase (without spaces) after a pound sign (#). The pound sign is referred to as a hashtag when used online through social media. By adding a # to a word or phrase you are making it a searchable link. Then readers can click the link and see who else is talking about a specific topic.

The purpose of hashtags is to make posts more visible. A person searching under that hashtag topic is able to see all the posts, including those they have not yet “liked.” Therefore your company’s page can be more visible to new customers, always a perk!

Our Top 3 Tips:

1. DON’T Over Use

When hashtags are used too often in a post, it makes them harder to read and they can get over looked. Also, avoid using hashtags more than 1-2 times per post.

2. Privacy Settings

Privacy settings are still in effect with hashtags so if you use a hashtag on a post that can only be seen by a specific group, then only that group will see it, even when it is being searched.

3. Promotion

Facebook hashtags can be used to promote your brand, product, event, contest, or special discount offer. Creating a hashtag can help your promotion catch on more quickly with consumers.

Be careful if you are running a contest to only promote the contest through Facebook’s approved contest rules. For example, it is okay to spread information and awareness about the contest through a hashtag such as, #WinAChewToy. However, it’s against the rules to allow contest entries through that same hashtag.

Some Examples:

Friskies

Friskies

  • Friskies is using the hashtag #CatJobs and having customers post photos of the work their cats do around the home. It’s a way to build engagement with their followers and the cat community.
Earth Rated PoopBags

Earth Rated PoopBags

  • Earth Rated Poop Bags uses #earthrated and #poopbags to reach potential new customers searching for the brand.
Pup-Peroni

Pup-Peroni

  • Pup-Peroni has a wonderful and very easy hashtag of #pup to reach both those searching for the company and as a nice alternative to #dog, which comes up with a massive number of results.

To see more examples of hashtags on Facebook, we invite you to visit our Facebook page at: https://www.facebook.com/chicagopetvideo

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Pet Industry Tips for Trade Shows

Pet Industry Trade Show questions answered by pet business expert, Andy Darmohraj, Senior VP of American Pet Products Association. Global Pet Expo is the largest pet product trade show in the world with over 1,000 companies coming together for 3 days.

He leaves us 3 main pieces of advice:

1. Plan ahead! With trade shows giving you such a limited amount of time, planning ahead is crucial to your success. Check out the trade expo’s website, find exhibitors you’re interested in meeting with and set up appointments during your time there.

2. Prepare for a long day.

3. Have fun, there’s a reason you got into the business you’re in. Network, network, network!

Prior to attending let buyers know that you’re going to be there whether that’s through direct mail, advertising or sending out a brief email blast. Include a small teaser or something that will encourage them to visit your booth! Trade shows are one of the best places to find the newest most innovative products out there. Make sure you make your time worthwhile and establish connections that will continue to add to your success.

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CPV meets Bryan Bickell, Founder of Chicago Loves Pits

What an honor to sit down with Bryan Bickell, one of the Blackhawks most highlighted players during the Stanley Cup playoffs for an interview with Chicago Pet Video. Despite being wrapped up in this heated series of games, registering eight goals and five assists for 13 points in 17 of the playoff games, the 27-year-old and his fiancee were happy to talk about their charity group Chicago Loves Pits and the so-called “bully breed” dogs. The video (to come) is part of a series of videos that we’re putting together on different popular dog breeds, this one specifically focusing on the pit bull breed, one that’s especially close to Bickell’s heart. The video will be available on PetMD’s website along with a second video with our very special interview with the two.

Bryan Bickell & Fiancee Amanda

Founded by Bickell, his fiancee Amanda Caskenette and animal advocated Alicia Boemi, Chicago Loves Pits is dedicated to promoting awareness, starting conversations, sharing the truth, and opening minds and hearts to encourage rescue and adoption of Pit Bull type dogs. With the help of Adopt-a-Pet.com, Chicago Loves Pits was an idea that turned into a reality. In 2012 Chicago Loves Pits launched its first campaign featuring two billboards located in prominent areas of Chicago that bore the headline: Bryan Bickell is the only fighter in this family. From there, Chicago Loves Pits has grown into a registered non-profit organization.

Thank you to Bryan and his fiancee, Amanda for taking the time out of one of your busiest weeks of the year to show your dedication and passion for such an important four-legged friend of yours.

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8 Ways to Get Website Visitors to Stick Around

When people land on your website how much are they really engaging with your content? If you use Google Analytics you should be able to make informed decisions about your website knowing how much time people spend there, what pages they stay on or leave from and whether or not they ever return. Getting people to your site is a project in itself but getting them to stay there and engage once they arrive is the hardest part. Below are 8 sure ways to get them to stick around:

1. Teach your visitors something new every time they come back: If you visited a site today and again in a month to see that there are no changes or updates, there’s a good chance you wouldn’t think anything is happening within the business. A blog would serve as a great solution here!

2. Keep the website navigation clean and simple: Once landing on your page, visitors should immediately understand what your website does, what value it will bring to them and what they should do next. Headline copy should be short and clear. Page copy should explain what you do in the simplest of terms. It is extremely important to have one main call-to-action on each page of the site – this could be a sign-up, a download, a free-trial, watching a video, or any other type of action you want your visitors to perform while visiting.

3. Provide pictures and video: Visuals are a great way to demonstrate and communicate how your product/service works. People don’t always prefer reading through text but they are open to watching and listening to a short explainer video about a product or service. These videos will also help increase the amount of time your visitor spends on site versus an otherwise quick skim through of page copy.

websitevideo

4. Update your content: You often hear content is KING. Updating your content and keeping your site relevant could be as simple as adding an ‘Updates’ or ‘News’ scroll with new product/service announcements, events you’ve attended, internal promotions, new contracts or recent partnerships. This will help change up your website so visitors aren’t visiting the same site over and over.

5. Add a blog: Give your visitors something valuable. A blog helps to increase the authenticity and show the personality behind your brand. You can think of it as an extension of your website’s ‘About Us’ page. Visitors are able to get a better understanding of your company, its employees, your values and what you really take pride in such as sharing and building a product that benefits your customers.

6. List the benefits of your products & services: This page should clearly highlight your various products and services giving your readers the information they need in order to research and understand what your business has to offer. There should be specific points describing how your product/service can fulfill a need or solve a problem that your visitor has. Be clear as to how you differentiate from your competitors. What can they expect to get from you that they wouldn’t anywhere else?

7. Case studies/testimonials: Case studies are a wonderful way to highlight your company’s success. These can help add a concrete and personal touch to your product and services. In each of your case studies be sure to mention the customer’s challenge, how your service helped them overcome that challenge and the outcome or result(s) they’ve had since using your service.

8. Test, Test, Test: Tweaking your website into it’s most successful version is going to be a night and day difference when it comes to ROI. Sites that can keep their visitors occupied with easy-to-find information are going to be the real stand-outs here. For example, f you have a newsletter sign-up form it’s extremely important to test out different forms, which styles get the most conversions? Are you asking for too much information for your guests? Is what you have to offer intriguing enough to get them to sign up? Does the signup button perform better when it’s green or yellow? Believe it or not these small details can make or break your click through rates. Never stop TESTING!

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Why We Don’t Recommend GoogleApps for Small Businesses

Okay, so if you’re in the small business domain, you’ve heard all about the amazing world of Google. There is Google+, Gmail, GoogleApps, etc. Just one teeny problem that is missing in the marketing, the customer service is AWFUL. If you have a problem and call the 1-800 number, you will be connected with someone whose first language is not English and although that in itself is not an issue, it can present a problem when you’re trying to communicate.

Also, one small glitch we’ve come across is when we tried to upgrade from Gmail to GoogleApps, we lost our entire YouTube channel! That’s right, a video production company without samples, active video links, or unpublished videos (used to privately share content) all of a sudden disappeared. This is apparently a problem when you have a YouTube channel that is registered under the same domain name, in this case it was the name of our company, “Chicago Pet Video.” While we are a small company, we are incredibly busy serving our clients and to have our YouTube channel completely disappear did cause some waves and majorly effect the way we conduct business.

Initially we were switching our email system over and went straight for GoogleApps, but now Microsoft’s Outlook is going to have to win this small battle. I’d love to support Google here, but Microsoft’s customers support is definitely better (not by much, but still) and ultimately we can’t forgive them for permanently deleting our entire YouTube channel, with likes, comments, and all.

Anyone else have two cents to share on Gmail vs. Outlook or a similar customer service nightmare story to share?

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How to Get Your Press Release Noticed

Episode 3 of Your Pet Business video blog. Tips and Advice on How to Get Your Press Release noticed from Clay Jackson, Deputy News Editor of Pet Product News and Veterinary Practice News.

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Why Video Marketing? Because These Experts Said So!

Have you found yourself wondering why your company should invest in video marketing? Why is video marketing important? What do the experts say about it? We’ve done a little of the initial research for you right here. Take a look at these quotes on what video marketers have to say about the industry and why it’s so important to implement a definitive marketing campaign:

1. “Business decision makers LOVE online video because it gives them the most amount of information in the shortest amount of time.” – Robert Weiss, President of MultiVision Digital

2. The right people to start video blogging are those with a passion to tell a story. – Steve Garfield (Author Of Get Seen)

3. “By publishing content that shows buyers you understand their problems and can show them how to solve them, you build credibility.” – Ardath Albee, Author of Emarketing Strategies for the Complex Sale

4. “People share, read and generally engage more with any type of content when it’s surfaced through friends and people they know and trust.” – Malorie Lucich, Facebook Spokesperson

5. “Humans are incredibly visual and powerful, moving images help us find meaning… [and] video helps capture and contextualize the world around us.” – Dan Patterson, What Makes an Online Video Worth Sharing?

steve jobs

6. “Audiences everywhere are tough. They do not have time to be bored or brow beaten by orthodox, old fashioned advertising.” – Craig Davis

7. “As you’ve noticed, people don’t want to be sold to. What people do want is news and information about the things they care about.” – Larry Weber, Author of Marketing to the Social Web

8. “There is no black magic to successfully attracting customers via the web.” – Rand Fishkin, CEO, Seomoz

9. “The aim of marketing is to know and understand the customer so well the product or service fits him and sells itself.” -Peter F. Drucker

10. “By publishing content that shows buyers you understand their problems and can show them how to solve them, you build credibility.” – Ardath Albee

11. “You can buy attention (advertising). You can beg for attention from the media (PR). You can bug people one at a time to get attention (sales). Or you can earn attention by creating something interesting and valuable and then publishing it online for free.” – David Meerman Scott, marketing speaker

12. “The Internet has turned what used to be a controlled, one-way message into a real-time dialogue with millions.” – Danielle Sacks, Fast Company reporter

13. “Focus on the core problem your business solves and put out lots of content and enthusiasm, and ideas about how to solve that problem.” – Laura Fitton

14. “We have technology, finally, that for the first time in human history allows people to really maintain rich connections with much larger numbers of people.” – Pierre Omidyar, founder, eBay

15. That, and I think those who invest in producing more creative, high quality, and unique video content will be able to far exceed the success of their peers who only invest lightly. – Rand Fishkin, CEO, Seomoz

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Business Financial Advice for Pet Professionals

Episode 2 of Pet Professional Series Web Series, “Your Pet Business.”

Business finance questions answered by pet business expert, Jeff Eckerling, CEO of DoggyLoot. Also featuring Andrea Lain Keirn, owner and founder of Big Bark, as the featured new pet business. Host is Andrea Fischetti from Chicago Pet Video. For more information and other episodes, visit: http://www.chicagopetvideo.com

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Your Pet Business Episode 1: Sales Tips

Episode 1 of Pet Professional Series Web Show, “Your Pet Business.” Sales questions answered by pet industry sales expert, Stephanie Bell, from Blackwood Pet Food. Also featuring Melissa Ramirez, owner and founder of Zerimax, as the featured new pet business. Host is Andrea Fischetti from Chicago Pet Video. For more information, visit: http://www.chicagopetvideo.com

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