Mission to Meet AZIMA Members: 22

This week I’d like you to meet Sheila Kloefkorn of KEO Marketing! KEO Marketing is a long time sponsor of AZIMA, with good reason, Sheila said.  She said she feels it is the best place to learn anything interactive marketing.  Also, she said she loves the diversity of topics and speakers at each event.

Nice to meet you, Sheila.  See you at next month’s event featuring Joe Pulizzi.  The discussion will focus on content marketing!

Is Your Baby Ugly??

Tim Ash Presenting at AZIMA Jan. 11, 2011 - Photo By Arnie Kuenn

You have spent months developing your new website having brainstorming sessions with upper management, your graphics artists, content developers and finally you’ve put this all together and right after your launch you realize no one is clicking on your special offers, your bounce rate is over 80{2bbd478b6aadf2a9bb5e10dcf35d17c0d0772390afbaf5ac8145fb1096668903} and your people are calling in complaints that they can’t figure out how to navigate your website.

Then the panic sets in, you realize that your baby is UGLY and you have created a landing page that SUCKS!

The reality in today’s interactive marketing is that we are bombarded with over 3000 marketing messages each day and unless we have taken some time to understand the psychology of our users, have an understanding of usability, how to use triggers in our copywriting and we have a firm grasp of who our perfect customer is we are setting ourselves up for failure.

Last night AZIMA (Arizona Interactive Marketing Association) featured landing page optimization expert Tim Ash who is the co founder of SiteTuners and author of “Landing Page Optimization” who gave a one hour presentation titled “Your Baby is Ugly” and discussed the “Seven Deadly Sins of Landing Page Design”

Sin #1 – Unclear Call to Action

“What am I suppose to do now?” This is the last question that you want to have a potential customer say when they arrive on your your website. From the perspective of your visitor you should have a clear and obvious path that they can follow to get them closer to their goal. If your visitors have to think and spend time of what to do next they will leave.

Tim further explained that “visitors to your website has an attention span of a lit match” and you have less then 1/20th of a second to make a first impression. If they are not instantly impressed with what they see, they will leave your site to find one that is better.


  • Focus on What Matters Most: Turn down the noise on your landing page by eliminating flashy visual elements that are distracting.
  • Apply the Obvious Standard: If your call to action is not obvious, you’re losing money.
  • Call to Action should be above the fold

Sin #2 – Too Many Choices

When we overwhelm a visitor with too many choices they will become confused. To have a successful landing page we need to be able to lead the visitor to their goal with a limited amount of choices.

People process images 400x faster then text so consider using imagery in a fashion to enable your visitors to process important call to actions on your site and to aid in navigation.

Your home page only has one purpose, to move your visitors off it as quickly as possible to the more important sales pages of your website. Your home page is in effect the “kitchen sink” of your website that will guide your visitors toward their goal.


  • Use a visual grid and shortcuts to reduce the reading scan
  • Categorize choices into small groups

Sin #3 – Asking for Too Much Information

We as Internet Marketers have become greedy in that we ask for too much information.

Imagine walking into a brick and mortar store and the clerk at the door asks you if they may hold onto your credit card while you shop, what would your reaction be?

But yet many of us in Internet Marketing do this same thing today when we ask for a mailing address, telephone number, and other personal information just to be able to download a free e-book.

Consider giving away this free E-book away for really free by not asking for any information at all. If they find the information contained in your book interesting they will follow-up with you with your contact info within the book and your not burdened with an email list of worthless prospects.


  • Only ask for information that is required to complete the transaction
  • If you can, collect the email address early to follow-up if the client abandons the process
  • Collect additional information from the client during a later stage of the process

Sin #4- Too Much Text

Remember as children when we watched the Charlie Brown cartoons and all when any of the adults spoke all we heard was “blah blabbla, blablba”?

This is the same thing our customers hear when we overload them with sales information and they will respond by hitting the back button and go someplace else.


1.      Use headlines, headings and well positioned links

2.      Use bulleted lists to cover key areas

3.      Remove all the subjective claims that you cannot support without factual evidence

Sin #5 – Not Keeping Promises

Search for information about the “Best Digital Camera” and in the number one position of Google’s Adwords you see this ad;

You think to yourself “I know Consumer Reports, I can trust them” and you click on their ad

However when you arrive on their site you see this and find out that you see that you have to “join today” to read the results!

Do you feel that you have been lied to? Will you ever trust Consumer Reports again?

This could be called a “profit prevention system” because you have failed to deliver what you promised and your visitors will leave frustrated and angry.


  • Be clear in your advertising and links of what you’re promising
  • Repeat the text and/or keywords on the destination page to reaffirm their decision
  • Don’t make false claims on what you will deliver

Sin #6 – Visual Distractions

Things that flash, flicker or move around is annoying and graphic designers are often frustrated artists, they often want to think outside the box and express their creativity on your website.

Also how many other websites have you seen that same girl with the headset for the customer service representative and those same group of guys in suits that are your management team?


  • Remove the chrome, the flashy blinky things that compete with your call to action
  • Replace those generic stock images on your site with professional photography that will enhance communication and trust

Sin #7 – Lack of Creditability or Trust

Unless you work for Coke, Red Bull or some Fortune 500 company chances are no one has ever heard of you or your company but yet you’re faced with making a positive first impression in under 1/20th of a second.

Building trust can be one of the most difficult tasks in development of your landing page.


  • Use well known trust symbols on your website above the fold and in prominent locations
  • Create a “butterfly collection” by using logos of your clients on your website
  • Feature your relevant policies, guarantees and other “points of difference” so they can be seen and understood when the visitor first comes to your website

From Ugly Baby to Superstar Marketer

Seems all so simple right? Well it is if you take it one step at a time.

You can easily start changing your “Ugly Baby” website right now by finding just one thing on Tim’s list and start the transformation to Superstar Marketer today!

Guest Post By: Roy Reyer is the president of SEOtrainingSW.com a provider of SEO and Internet Marketing training and consulting and an associate of the Search Engine Academy offering Certification in basic and advanced SEO through partnership with the University of Mississippi. Sign up for Roy’s free weekly SEO tips on his website today.

OMS 2011 Is Nearing Capacity!

OMS is a little less than a month away! Be sure to register now before the event completely sells out. Now is a great time to plan to take a few days to join over a thousand of your marketing peers in sunny San Diego to learn, network, and share best practices you can use for a lifetime.

Get 20{2bbd478b6aadf2a9bb5e10dcf35d17c0d0772390afbaf5ac8145fb1096668903} off OMS 2011 with promo code : AZIMA

Group Savings Available

The best way to save on registration is to register as a group with your colleagues. If two or more of your colleagues need some online marketing education, sign up with them and all of you will receive at least a 25{2bbd478b6aadf2a9bb5e10dcf35d17c0d0772390afbaf5ac8145fb1096668903} discount! For groups of 3 or 4 use promo code GROUP3 to save 25{2bbd478b6aadf2a9bb5e10dcf35d17c0d0772390afbaf5ac8145fb1096668903}.  For groups of 5 or more use promo code GROUP5 to save 30{2bbd478b6aadf2a9bb5e10dcf35d17c0d0772390afbaf5ac8145fb1096668903}.

New Speakers Announced

New thought leaders, brand marketers and expert practitioners have been added to the OMS 2011 line-up. See the complete list of speakers.

Heather Oldani
Director of U.S. Communications; WOMMA Director, McDonald’s

Mike Metz
Sr. Director of Web Marketing and Strategy, Cisco

Chris Brogan
Author of Trust Agents & [chrisbrogan.com]

Brian Solis
Author of Engage
& Blogger at BrianSolis.com

Mario Sundar
Sr. Social Media Manager & Chief Blogger, LinkedIn

Ekaterina Walter
Social Media Strategies, Intel


SMAZ4 Social, Mobile, Search & Digital Marketing for Business Feb 11

Largest Interactive Marketing Event in AZ
SMAZ is the premier business focused event to help companies understand and learn the latest techniques in digital marketing and social media. Learn from industry experts and corporations that have experience in how to do it right. With a focus on real world experience which means we share the good, the bad and what really works. SMAZ4 is February 11th!

Register Today for SMAZ4http://bit.ly/SMAZ4MINT (Use smazzie for 25% off)



Location: The MadCap Theaters in beautiful downtown Tempe. We have all of the theaters on the 2nd floor, open areas and ‘healthier’ concessions slated for the event. All this means that our event is ready for more attendees.

The MadCap Theaters

730 S. Mill Avenue

Tempe, AZ 85281 Google Map

Parking Details (There will be free and discounted parking available)

Mission to Meet AZIMA Members: 21

The 21st edition of the Mission to Meet AZIMA Members series features Nick Roshon from iCrossing. Nick loves to attend as many of the AZIMA monthly social events as possible because of the caliber of speakers and all the great networking opportunities.  Additionally, he learns a lot from each presentation that he can apply to h is own life and career.

Thanks for your continued support, Nick! Be sure not to miss out on next week’s event on January 11 featuring Tim Ash. His presentation with cover landing page optimization will be one you don’t want to miss!

Mission to Meet AZIMA Members: 20

This week’s edition of the Mission to Meet AZIMA Members brings you Liam O’Mahony of the Community Services Department at City of Chandler. He said he keeps coming back to AZIMA events because they are inspiring to him and give him new ideas! Liam considers himself a pretty low-tech guy, but over the past few years he said he has adapted to changes in the tech industry, with help from organizations like AZIMA.

Glad we could help, Liam!

Hope to see you at the next social event — January 11 featuring Tim Ash. His presentation with cover landing page optimization and will be a must-see!  Also, I would like to wish all AZIMA members a Happy New Year!  See you next year — look for me and my flip cam!

Mission to Meet AZIMA Members: 19

Wow– 18 video blogs so far and going strong. This week, I’d like you to meet our 19th featured member:  Greg Head of New Avenue! Greg said he tries to make it to AZIMA as often as possible to network with innovative thinkers.  Also, he said he is impressed with the caliber of speakers AZIMA brings to Phoenix.

Thanks for attending our social events, Greg!  Don’t miss the next one — January 11 featuring Tim Ash. His presentation with cover landing page optimization and you won’t want to miss it!

David Mihm Presents Local Search

This is a guest post by Nick Roshon (@nickroshon), an SEO Strategist at iCrossing.  He also blogs at the iCrossing Great Finds BlogNickRoshon.com, and Nick’s Car Blog.

December’s AZIMA event proved to be another great one as David Mihm of GetListed.org presented a comprehensive and mind-blowing presentation on Local Search. David authored

david mihm

Photo from DavidMihm.com

an acclaimed report on Local Search Ranking Factors and his work is used and cited by SEO & Local search experts worldwide. In his presentation he didn’t hold anything back, giving out advanced tips and sharing many secrets about local search optimization – his presentation was so well received that comments such as “I’m learning 10 years of local search marketing in 1 hour. My mind is about to explode from awesomeness” were heard and echoed on Twitter.

The presentation started off with any explanation of why local search is important, and then he explained the Google Places algorithm in three parts – Relevance, Prominence, and Distance. His presentation included intermediate & advanced tactics, a discussion on analytics, and even best practices for uber-competitive markets – it was an impressive amount of ground to cover in just under an hour, but David kept a great pace and wow’d the audience for an hour straight.

Local Search – Why It’s Important

First off – why should you pay attention to local search? David explained that 20{2bbd478b6aadf2a9bb5e10dcf35d17c0d0772390afbaf5ac8145fb1096668903} of desktop searches have a local intent – a staggering 2 BILLION queries per month. It’s more important than ever to concentrate on local search, as Google has recently revised their search results to blend organic and local listings throughout the search engine results, as opposed to separating the local results in a “7 pack” above the organic results as they used to. As Google explains in their blog, this change was made to make local results even easier to find, and it definitely gives local results (and specifically, links to Google Places) more prominence in the search results. This fundamental shift means that search marketers will need to focus on both organic and local optimization to be successful, and that local business owners should focus not only on their website, but also on their Google Places page to make it provides a useful & informative experience for users.

The Places Algorithm – How Does it work?

The Places algorithm solves a very difficult question – how do you rank a phonebook? Yet the answer is pretty simple and based off of a pretty basic framework of just three factors – Relevance, Prominence, and Distance. This is a much different algorithm than organic search due to the local intent of the user. David then broke down each element of the algorithm further.


Optimizing for distance is impossible – you are where you are. This is one factor that you cannot control. The other two – Relevance and Prominence – are where you should focus your efforts.


There are many steps you can take to improve your relevance to local search keywords – many are straightforward like having a keyword in your business name, adding yourself to the appropriate categories, and making sure your Google Place page is claimed and filled out completely. In addition to just claiming and filling out your place page, make sure to make it compelling – the goal is to get clicks, and convert visitors – not just rank well. Otherwise, increasing your relevancy is much like organic search, pick keywords that are relevant to your business, including some longer tail keywords that will convert well, and then use those keywords throughout your copy in a natural sounding way.


Prominence is the third and perhaps most difficult aspect of local search optimization – generally the intermediate and advanced tactics. Simply put, prominence is what others say about you. The easiest thing you can do to improve your prominence is to manually claim your Google Places listing. Be sure to claim your listing using an email address on your own domain, and not a Gmail account, as this will help Google verify you are the owner of the website and not just a random Gmail user. The other big factor in improving your prominence is to have a lot of high quality citations – a citation is considered a mention of your Name, Address, and Phone Number (or N.A.P. for short). Having high quality citations that are geo-relevant and related to your industry or vertical will help your business thrive in local search prominence. Another aspect of prominence is reviews – having lots of reviews will help your business, especially positive ones. There are many other advanced tactics to improve prominence, such as presence on Flickr, popular YouTube videos, and even geo-tagging in Wikipedia. There is a great write up on the SEO Training SW blog that shares some of these more advanced tactics if you are interested.

Organic Optimization for Local Search

A good SEO strategy is holistic of both local & organic – David shared with us some strategies to make organic search strategy work together with your local search optimization for optimal results. Tactics such as including the city & state in your title tags, and creating separate pages on your website for each of your locations are two easy steps you can take to improve your local & organic search optimization. And of course, links matter, as they do for all aspects of organic search – to help your local search the most, try to get links from geo-relevant sites, or with geo-specific anchor text, as those links will help reinforce the relevance of your business’ location and service offerings to the search engines.


David’s presentation was an eye-opener for many local business owners, organic SEOs, and other internet marketers as we learned just how complicated and advanced local search optimization has become. For retailers, brick and mortars, or anyone with a local presence, it is essential to start learning local search optimization and creating a holistic optimization strategy that accounts for both local and organic tactics.

Mission to Meet AZIMA Members: 18

This week’s Mission to Meet AZIMA Members post features Thomas Ballantyne from Bulwark Pest Control. Ballantyne’s AZIMA story is a bit different.  Though he thoroughly enjoys the speakers and networking AZIMA has to offer, his video interview reveals a bit about a video of his own, filmed at a prior AZIMA event.

Glad your video was successful, Thomas!  Also, thanks for bringing “myth busters” to an AZIMA event.

SearchFest 2011- Get the Early Bird Discount While You Still Can!

SearchFest 2011- Portland’s Premier Search Marketing + Social Media Conference

Join hundreds of your online marketing peers for the fifth annual SearchFest! Portland’s largest search engine marketing conference is dedicated to search marketing education and networking.

SEMpdx has again recruited top search marketing experts for individual panel sessions, including senior online marketers from companies like the New York Times, REI, Intel, and Oregon State University.  Agency-side veterans Rand Fishkin, Marty Weintraub, Ian Lurie, John Andrews and Matt McGee return to complement the experience of these in-house representatives.  New 2011 panels focus on the cutting-edge areas of Local and Mobile Search, featuring presentations from Greg Sterling and Mike Blumenthal.

The complete agenda covers a wide variety of online marketing topics, including: competitive intelligence, social media strategies and analytics, website design to increase search optimization and customer acquisition, search marketing strategy, building a search agency, universal search, advanced link building, advanced analytics, and advanced pay-per-click techniques.

SearchFest is open to all individuals interested in learning the latest advancements in enhancing search engine performance to deliver more visitors and customers to your website.

February 23, 2011
The Governor Hotel, Portland, Oregon
View Agenda, Speakers and Register

“Early Bird” pricing ends December 31, so Register NOW using discount code: ‘AZIMA’ and save 10{2bbd478b6aadf2a9bb5e10dcf35d17c0d0772390afbaf5ac8145fb1096668903}!