Category: Find Your Spot

11 Jul 2017

If You Build It, Will They Come?

Gone are the days that someone calls an agency and wants to finally build a website for their business. For the most part, everyone has one. Depending how savvy the company is, they are either on Web 2.0 or higher of their own digital presence. We started work in web development many years ago, and it is nice to no longer convince a company how important a web presence is. However, there is still a huge misconception as to just how powerful a website can be. Just building a new website doesn’t mean people will find your website. Today, competition is fierce online. At Leopard Digital, we seriously struggle when someone wants us to build a new website but they do not want to spend any money or social media effort to drive traffic to it. There is a sense that so many people are searching online, that if they build it, they will come. This is not the case.

Outside of digital marketing, people will only find your website in one of 3 ways:
1. They type your URL in the address bar – these are your existing customers
2. They type your business name in the search bar – these are customers or referrals
3. They type your type of business (or products) in the search bar – this is the open market

In the case of someone finding you in example 1 or 2, having an updated site is still important. It validates that they are doing business with a company who stays current, relevant information is all that is found versus dated content, and the user experience should be better since current development matches current technology requirements such as the latest mobile devices. So, it is definitely worth keeping your site regularly updated just like maintenance in a home. If you do a little each year, then you shouldn’t have a tear-down on your hands. But, if you launch it and forget it about, in 5 years, it is most likely a big do-over!

Example 3 above is by and large why people tend to come to us for a new website. They think if their site is updated with nice current design, then they would attract more customers. I am not sure how this thinking is so widely believed, but this is where a digital marketer at any level becomes necessary for your business. This is where art and science merge. See, with websites, there are two experiences simultaneously happening. First, there is the front-end. This is what people see when they land on your site. Your navigation, design, content, forms, downloads, etc. Second, there is the back-end. This is what search engines and digital tools see when someone searches for your products or navigates through your website. The back-end is the busy part because it collects cookies, stores data, and tells Google, “hey, hey, pick me!” But the back-end is not very pretty at all. Like a blind date, you want to make a good first impression. If you haven’t washed your hair in a week and your clothes are a wrinkled mess, it may take a bit for your date to finally learn how smart you really are! In person, someone may give you the time to explain who you are and why you’re great. But, on a web page, forget about it! You have about 2.5 seconds to make that happen. And, if people don’t like your front-end enough to stay and learn all about you, then your back-end will never get to collect the data needed to learn why they tried dating you (errrr, visited you!) in the first place.

Therefore, the short answer is no. If you build it, that does not mean they will come. These are the efforts that drive traffic to your website:
1. Online advertising
2. Content optimization
3. Social media
4. Referrals from other websites
Getting traffic to your website is a nurturing business. It doesn’t need to be expensive, but it does need to be consistent. So, take the time to write key business goals for what you expect from your website and be prepared to spend the time building it according to the success you want. Then connect with us, we’d love to help you #FindYourSpot!

03 May 2017
Manufacturing Marketing

Manufacturing Marketing – Oxymoron?

In America, manufacturing is a critical sector of our economy. It is 12% of our GDP, 18.5 million jobs are supported by it, and $1.3 trillion of product is exported annually. So, for such an extensive industry, how is marketing still a myth to so many manufacturing companies? This question has been puzzling people for years. In fact, an article published in Harvard Business Review in 1977 titled, Can Marketing and Manufacturing Coexeist?, is proof that the two have long been at odds. As you are aware, both professions have evolved significantly. However, just in February of this year, an excellent article written by Elena Garuc titled, Four Marketing Action Items for Manufacturersproves manufacturing is still lagging in modern marketing opportunities. The four action items are:

  1. Establish a marketing strategy
  2. Update your website
  3. Embrace social media
  4. Rework your email marketing campaign


Garuc makes great points for diving into each of these, but I want to elaborate a bit further. See below for additional reasons why I believe manufacturers need to stop pretending they are not direct to consumer.

  1. No matter what industry you are in, it is not what you’re selling, it’s who you’re selling to! Even if you only sell B2B, you are selling to people, and people use the web as the window to the soul of your business. It is the fastest way to grasp who you are and how you can be relevant to them. Many manufacturers had a site built as recently as 7 years ago. Unfortunately, the technology, usability, and design has changed so much, that the site looks like it was built in the ’70’s! Manufacturing today is using sophisticated technology and producing clean, sleek parts. Your website should reflect that image. It needs to be modern and explain who you are not just what you do. And most importantly, it needs to be mobile optimized so that people in the field can easily review your website on their phone or tablet.
  2. Humanize your work. Unless you are manufacturing artificial limbs, you may not think of what your doing as directly affecting lives. But, even if only to the sales partners and customers, you are people running an important business. Having a presence on social media may not necessarily drive new business, but for the people who are researching you, social media can be an outlet to humanize your business and share a lighter side of personalities.
  3. Communication is key. Establishing a monthly newsletter and email marketing may sound more cumbersome than it is. Again, this would not necessarily be for new sales, however. Just setting triggers for customers in process is a huge time saver for customers and your team that answers their calls. Also, newsletters are a great way to communicate house keeping items like, “we have a new payment system,” or “our latest machine purchase has increased our size capacity.” Not every customer reads these all the time, but just seeing your name in their inbox helps keep you top of mind. Staying top of mind to people in your history is the best way to make sure they’re in your future.


Establishing a clear marketing strategy is important, especially if you are going to spend money. But, many of the suggestions I just made are inexpensive or even free. The bottom line is that your customer and potential customers are looking online. A picture tells 1,000 words. Let them picture you as you really are today! Of course, if you don’t have an in-house marketer, let us help you #FindYourSpot in digital. We can improve your presence at any budget level.

Thank you for your time,

Katherine Campbell

10 Apr 2017
Paid search campaigns for Manufacturing Service Departments | Leopard Digital Baton Rouge

Paid Search For Service

Paid search is often thought of for only lead generation, but service is an expense that can always find more efficiency. Few things are more exciting in business than strong growth momentum. Either the market is finally right, or you launch a new product that changes your market, or maybe – just maybe – you finally found the right marketing team. But whatever the reason, when you find yourself with a healthy backlog of orders, you can see the future in a different light. However, it doesn’t matter if you sell mortgages or manufacturing services, the more products sold, the more you have to service. In regards to service call centers, we have done a great job in the last 30 years of outsourcing or even offshoring these tasks seen as pure overhead.

The savings have helped, but now we have to service the service centers with constant training, communication, and metrics expectations. When service has to take place in person, as is often the case in manufacturing, it is an expense that cannot be spared. So, how do we further minimize service expense? What is the next generation of service efficiency? Well, everyone who shops at Walmart knows this answer. It’s Self-Serve, of course! So, how exactly do we take B2B industries and enable them to Self Check Out? We answer the question right when they ask it – through paid search. Below is the 1-2-3 of the how-to’s and benefits of a concerted paid search effort for service. Or, CONTACT US to discuss the best options for your business.

  1. Build a service YouTube channel. Many companies today have done a decent job of website FAQ’s. Depending on how long they have been hosting and allowing experts to comment on those pages, however, there can be information overload on them. Also, the more comments a question gets, the more opportunity for contradiction of the right way to handle a service situation, and thus your office gets a call anyway. Nothing is more easily explained these days than when demonstrated in a video. Video has by far the highest engagement rate of digital media. You have service teams in the field everyday, have a camera follow them around for a couple of months. It doesn’t matter if you have a software or hardware service call, an expert has to go through the process of troubleshooting and correcting. Film it, catalog it, and share it.
  2. Drive traffic to solutions. Once you have this service channel to a reasonable library, your customers need to know it is there. If you suppose that customers can navigate your website’s user experience to the 10 clicks it may take to find a solution, you’re probably supposing wrong. Many will give up before they figure out the logic of someone’s navigation stream. They will sooner leave your website, go to Google, type in your company name with the product and service needed, hoping Google will find your correct page for them! So, SEO for service is also critical for potentially saving a service call. The most efficient route to helping your customer find your videos, though, is through paid search. Also, a search for something like, “ABB Guided Wave Radar Level Service” is not a competitive term. This is why a service campaign in search engines can be the fastest and least expensive route for a Self-Serve solution.
  3. Consider a service app. Whether or not an app is a good effort for a product depends on the quality and length of time the product will be used. If it is a 30 year mortgage or a 15 year life expectancy installation in a plant, then obviously service will be needed over a long cycle. An app would be worth the customer’s effort to download. See our app page for a brief overview. When sales offers the service app as a free download with purchase, it can be a huge comfort to many DIY clients.

We all know that there is no way out of providing a service team for products. In fact, the better the service, the higher the sales can be as it is proven the relationship between the two are critically dependant on each other. But, customer service today can often be a better experience if the answer almost seems to find the customer versus the customer chasing it down. Having digital solutions for service is a huge benefit because even if every problem cannot have a video solution, the fast metrics available for what people are searching for and clicking on are the best insights of what is going on with your products out in the field.


Thank you for your time,
Katherine Campbell

27 Feb 2017

The Goldilocks Spot

All businesses are also customers. Even if it’s only office supplies we’re talking about, the people ordering the supplies can and will share their experience. The supply order taker at the water cooler may say, “Wow, I ordered supplies online from XYZ Company this morning, and they delivered them this afternoon! Really made me look like a hero to my boss who needed a couple of things.” Then, sure enough an engineer, who will probably never order supplies for the company, will walk away from the break room having an affinity for XYZ Company. Thus, without XYZ Company being able to track it, they have a positive offline brand impact directly due to their online service offering.

Office supplies is an obvious case of supplier and customer. But, many businesses that are not web-based businesses may not see themselves as a customer of soft services like search engines such as Google, Bing, and Yahoo. The biggest challenge about this is that having a savvy appearance online is no longer an option. Being engaged in the online conversation via social media is no longer an option. Especially important, being found when someone searches for your particular offering must be part of the business growth model. So, the question becomes, how does a non web-based business have a strong presence in a whole other business: the web. Well, we at Leopard Digital believe the first thing you have to do is Find Your Spot!

We define your “spot” as having a place on the web that accomplishes 3 things:
1. Your website is easily found if someone searches your name or any of your product offerings
2. When a searcher clicks on of your results, they find a trustworthy and current experience
3. The amount of money spent to be found is in line with your growth and brand budget, which would include sales, marketing, service, and even corporate service responsibility budgets

Many companies can accomplish all of these goals of the web without being the number one result at the top of every search result in everything they do. That is a very expensive and often cost-prohibitive approach to an online strategy. Yet, if you are on page 3 of search results, or if you have no current social media posts, not only are you missing a lot of visitor volume, you can also be detected as untrustworthy or out of touch with modern business. The point is for you to get engaged while staying within your comfort zone of budget and online appearances. So, here are my 1-2-3’s to help you Find Your Spot if you are not a web-based business.

  1. Design your budget around being competitive versus trying to be competitive within a pre-defined budget. Either do the research or hire someone to do the research to understand the scope of opportunity in the field of your business. For instance, if you are in oil & gas manufacturing and you make level measurement technology, you can see how many monthly searches on average there are in words like:  site glass level gauge, liquid level gauge, magnetic level, etc. You can learn how many searches per month, what the average cost per click is in the search terms, and who is competing for those terms. If the clicks are expensive and the competition is tight, it is best to decide one or two products to compete in online based on your offering. So, if “magnetic level gauge” is $7/click and very high competition but “site glass gauge” is only $1/click and low competition, then the goal could be to be a 3rd or 4th search result in one versus a first result in the other, respectively. Make sense?
  2. Track the ROI all the way through LTV (life time value). This is a long-range goal if you haven’t started working on this yet. But the idea is to know how many people visited your site from search or social media posts, relate it to a marketing/sales code, and watch the value of the buyer over time. Now, generally, manufacturing like level gauges are not capable of completing purchases online. Therefore, there needs to be training in the conversation of sales and coordinated tracking of rate of increase in traffic to the site to rate of growth in overall sales and perception value. This step is a detailed blog within itself, but we would be happy to explain in further detail if you want to Connect With Us.
  3. Track your share of voice in the marketplace. Remember that brand value is critical in a longer sales cycle product, like manufacturing tends to be. In the case of level gauges, if the average customer only buys them once every 7-15 years, then you cannot afford to miss their purchase, or else you have wait ANOTHER 7-15 years! So, it is important to continuously track the search volume in the industry and how your competitors rank in getting their share of the volume versus you. All of this can be done by using “listening” software that is available today. Hiring an expert like us can offer you insights into the nuances of the industry and give you alerts of moves your competitors may be making both on spend as well as product pushes.

Again, it’s really too late to decide if you want to compete for online impression share. The evolving goals are the decision points. Are they for direct sales or brand impression and trust? Deciding what your comfort zone is should begin with where the competition already is and backing into a plan that you are comfortable with. Your Goldilocks Spot doesn’t need to mirror anyone else’s, but you do have the try the porridge to stay competitive!

Thank you for your time,
-Katherine Campbell

14 Feb 2017

Emotional Re-Branding: 3 Steps to Remember

Developing a brand for a new company is exciting work. With a world of options, one could dive into GoDaddy domain name search and type away until the right mix of creative options and available URL’s finally align. At Leopard Digital, we provide a brand board for clients to look at varying concepts of how we could turn that new brand name into a customer-facing and engaging website, business cards, etc. Everyone who goes through this process with us finds it a rewarding effort. However, redeveloping a brand that already exists, can be a whole different story.

When a company has been around for a while and they’re looking to freshen up the brand, re-branding often means everything from the name of a business to the colors, logos, and style can come into question. Often, a re-brand is a re-commitment from the management team or owner of the business. They may want to grow the business to the next level or invest in cleaning up a brand that was never fully developed in the first place. Though even after the decision has been made, change can be hard. Of course, the longer a company has existed, the harder change can be. Even someone in accounting will weigh in on the decision based on what it will cost the company to change letterhead and business cards. Yet, there is a lot of emotion around change and there are real consequences to consider. Re-branding can be expensive, can make employees anxious, and can confuse loyal customers. So, consider the following three things when deciding to take the leap and change your image.

  1. Get buy-in. It’s a good idea to talk about the concept of re-branding for a while before diving right into it. Ask for people’s input or you can even take a survey, but let employees express their emotions on a new brand. It’s not a matter of them making the decision, but they are often the front line to your customers, and their feedback can be mutually valuable.
  2. It’s not what you’re selling, it who you’re selling to. When you start to work with the marketing team on what the new image should be, it is important to try to remove emotion from decisions. First, differentiation in the marketplace is important. Consider how to stand out versus looking like everyone else. Second, the image should reflect the clientele you want to attract. So, if you like the look and feel of a highly polished, sleek look but your customer base is casual and active, they may not see a reflection of themselves in your company.
  3. Share the outcome of the re-brand and why you did it. Once you launch the brand, have something that we call a launch party! It can be on varying levels of celebration, sometimes there can be an actual party to show off the new logo on the door, etc. For some clients, we put together a unique gift with the new logo, package it with a page of content about the change, and mail it to any number of people – including friends. At the very least, you should share your new brand by sending a nice email with an explanation and announcement both before the change is published and then after. This way people are not blindsided by the change.

Every size company should go through brand evolution. It keeps the company current, and if presented in the right way, it can re-energize the engagement with both employees and the marketplace.

Let us know if Leopard Digital can help you find your spot with a re-brand. We’re experts at guiding you while you take the leap!

Thank you for your time,

Katherine Campbell

05 Feb 2017

“What’s in a name?” Why Website Naming is no Shakespeare

“What’s in a name? That which we call a rose by any other name would smell as sweet.” – William Shakespeare.

That beautiful quote by Shakespeare is intended to mean that a name doesn’t change the value of a particular thing. However, when it comes to naming a website, nothing could be less true. Lately, I have had the opportunity to consult for two midsize companies who are looking to take the leap and scale their businesses. I believe the only things that keep a $20mm company from becoming a $60mm company are efficiencies and effective marketing. Efficiencies of scale becomes a business within the business, but some parts of marketing can be best served if outsourced.  This is precisely what these two companies have chosen to do. Largely for them, this means it’s time to focus more heavily on competing online in highly competitive spaces including mortgage and insurance. These are noisy markets to be sure, however, there is plenty of pie to serve themselves a piece.

So, it begins. Where does one determine how to create online growth in a profitable manner when a keyword in these industries for a paid search campaign could easily cost $20 for one click?! There is a lot of planning involved to pre-determine the customer path because getting the click can be easy enough, but fulfilling the expectation from that click to the point of a visitor completing a lead form needs to be planned with intention all the way through the thank you email and longer term follow-up messaging. The biggest challenge with these two companies isn’t so much with their websites as it the name of them. For instance, one company (I’m not using real names to protect the innocent) is called, let’s say Mortgage Leader. But their URL or website name is Now, to attain large scale growth online is not for the cheap nor faint of heart. One must be in the game all the way or probably not play. On this, Superbowl Sunday, it would be like asking if the Falcons can win if they only put half of their team on the field against the Patriots? Of course not. There are two major problems with this website name disconnect. One is search engine optimization and the other is user trust.

When it comes to SEO or search engine optimization, there are very particular rules for online success. One may argue that there is a lot of room for creativity, but for the most part, it is more about specific types of web development, coding, and clear messaging than a catchy marketing phrase or beautiful images. To put it simply, the website name and the company name need to match. Search engines like Google and Yahoo take great care to provide excellent results for the user experience. Of course, the better the user experience, the more often users choose their search engine than someone else’s, and the more money they ultimately make. This ties directly to the user trust issue. If someone sees an ad for Mortgage Leader and a few days later she decides to search online with the name, she may not want to click on a result that reads, It almost feels like a scam. But, now that she’s typed a search term with a highly competitive word like “mortgage,” the results will include trusted names like Quicken Loans or Wells Fargo, so she may decide to click one of those options. And, she’ll make that decision within just a couple of seconds.

Since she moved on to easier options, Google will count this slightly against because it might mean that the website wasn’t a good result for her search, and they want to provide the best results possible. If this happened many hundreds of times, it could significantly discount the result value. Obviously, making a move as significant as changing the web address of a company can be a costly decision – business cards, stationary, etc. would all need to be changed. But sometimes we have to realize a 10-year-old decision of which website name to buy is stunting our growth, and it’s best to take a step back to take a huge leap forward. What’s in a name? Success!

Thank you for your time,

Katherine Campbell

08 Jan 2017

Ask your website: Isn’t it time to Find Your Spot?

Social media, website management, and search engine optimization may not be how you want to spend your time, but businesses today must be aggressive in all of them. The good news is that it’s not too late to start! It is the whole reason we decided to #TakeTheLeap into this new venture. After our first week of exciting meetings with potential new clients, I sit to write the first blog for Leopard Digital, and it is crystal clear what our mission is. Competition, competition, competition. Allow me to define competition in relation to the digital world – the world in which your website thrives, your brand exists, and your company lives – whether or not you’re a willing participant in this world.

First, I think it’s a spiritually phenomenal belief system to feel that there is no competition, that there is abundance, and that hard work pays off no matter who else offers your same service. However, competition online means something a bit more than other specialists who may or may not be as good at your service offering. Odds are that you offer a service that is not new, even if you specialize in a niche of the service. Real Estate Brokers, Contractors, Attorneys, Financial Planners, and Medical Doctors are highly specialized needs that would rarely get crossed over for one another. The challenge is not so much convincing a potential client that you are the choice for the service, the challenge online is getting them to know you are an option at all, at the same exact time they need you! Today, your real competition is not so much competing professionals. Your real competition is retaining mind-share by potential clients who are bombarded with brand ads, tweets, likes, news headlines, and transactional versus relational requests. The consistent opportunity to “get this done now,” “get this done fast,” and “get this discount today only,” can easily sway a click on a “Get Started” button even if you did spend an hour at the chamber of commerce meeting to discuss their needs. It’s not that people don’t want to remember you… they simply can’t. Too much information today is competing for our mind-share. Most likely, when you meet someone offline who may one day need your service, they try to remember who you are, they go online to search for your specialty, and boom! You’re either in the game or you’re not.

The difference is the timing of the client’s need. That is typically something that not even the best marketer can predict down to the exact minute before the user search. When you meet someone through a networking or personal introduction, the need is typically not immediate. They take your business card, you share a nice connection, and you assume one day you will get their call. Yet, from the time your potential client leaves you to the time they get home that day, they will see hundreds to thousands of other brands, messages, and media that fades your meeting’s memory pretty quickly. Then one day, weeks later, that person needs your service. Again, they go online, do a search, and a list of results is gratifyingly displayed at the exact moment they want their options presented… ahhh, gotta love the web! They may even remember your conversation and will glance at the first page of results to see if they find the name that they just know “I will remember it if I see it.” But alas, your website is not listed and they opt to click “Get Started Now” on someone else’s.

We at Leopard Digital realize that it can be overwhelming to try to keep up with every potential client and attempt to be in the right place at the right time for the right pace of your business growth. That’s why we’re here. You need to have a spot online. You need to be seen when it is relevant to your business at the price that is sensible for your business. You need to stay focused on the actual service you offer without strategizing the best time to tweet or post. Your website needs efficient search engine optimization and trackable analytics. All you need from your online presence is a regular report that highlights what’s going on with your website, who’s using your business name, your existing clients and potential clients, and a consistent growth of visitors to your business. Whether or not you consider yourself a highly competitive person, you live in a naturally competitive world. Let us help you #FindYourSpot.

Thank you for your time,

Katherine Campbell

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