SEO – SEM – Social Media and your Blog


The ultimate purpose of your corporate website is to deliver your brand message, facilitate your site visitor’s contact with your business, and to be easily found by the search engines thereby creating site visits. The fact is that search engines focus on content. Now before you say, “what about? …”, I do recognise that site structure and key-phrases form the foundation of your website and links back to your site from authoritative websites are also critical; but how can you legitimately accomplish significant site visits and develop back-links to your website? The best method I know of is excellence in content or you might have heard the more market savvy phrases “liquid content or content marketing.”

What are the steps required to create an effective web presence on the Internet? The first would be to build a professional looking website that integrates the designs to attract site visitors and to populate that site with sufficient content to deliver your message. I read about a start-up recently that specialises in creating single page websites for small business, and a single page is definitely better than your business having no web presence at all, but a single page is not going to accomplish your goals on the Internet today. There are many good web development companies including our own OTR Web Solutions and so if you need help with your website do a web search, check references and view their portfolio … then contract a website with the web developer of your choice.

After your website is up and running and presuming your web developer has looked after your web content with market ready content, SEO built into the site and keyword/key phrase research and implementation (and all of the foregoing is critical to your success) then it is time to look at your Social Media.

Online Corporate Blog

Let’s start with the importance of your business web blog, which cannot be underestimated. It is here that you can develop fresh, relevant content on a regular basis. Always integrate your blog with your website, it should be a seamless transition to your blog pages from your, or within your website. It is important to understand that your blog is predominantly about relevant information that pertains to your readers and is not “hitting them over the head” with “buy my product or service.” Your blog must also be published on a regular basis and not hit or miss as you remember to write an article. If you can only write once a month then write every month … but make it good and make it consistent. Generally speaking an effective business blog has new content at least once per week.

Continuing with your business blog, it is important to make certain you have performed the SEO (search engine optimization) functions necessary for each blog entry. Keyword and keyphrase implementation within your blog is part of what draws the search engines attention to your blog and as your blog is part of your website, to your website. Each entry to your blog is another page to your website and relevant content is still king. Your blog should invite interaction by having a clear place for your readers to respond and should have clear links to your Social Media pages. Take notice of the floating Social Media links on the left of this blog as well as static links at the bottom of the blog. this allows for you as the reader to simply pass along content that you find relevant.

Lastly your corporate blog is not very useful if all it does is have good information but there is no call to action to your readers. Give your readers the opportunity to contact you at least once as a bare minimum at the close of your blog. A closing paragraph like, “Ian Conklin is the President of OTR Web Solutions Inc and you can follow him on Twitter @otrweb or from theOTR Web Facebook pages. If after reading this blog article you recognise that your company could use some web development assistance and/or Social Media Management then please make contact with OTR and we will follow up with your request.” These two sentences clearly state who we are and allows for multiple contact opportunities without being in the readers face.

Social Media

There are a multitude of Social Media options for you to choose from and what you make use of is mostly dependant upon your business. For the most part many businesses want to create a Facebook, Twitter, Google+ andLinkedIn business pages as well of course as the corporate blog. Many aspects of a Social Media Campaign were covered in an earlier OTR Web blogSocial Media Campaigns which you can read here. You will want to make use of a Social Media Managment tool to manage your SM campaigns … otherwise the task can become overwhelming. You can see the tools we use here at OTR Web to manage our clients Social Media Campaigns on these pages. Lastly your website again must be fully integrated with your Social Media campaigns. Make it simple for your readers to pass on your information to their followers by having your Social Media links on your website pages.

When your website contains the elements that the search engine bots deem necessary, combined with creative designs and images, and excellence in your copy content then, you have a website that your readers will refer their circle of friends to via Facebook “Likes”, Google +’s, and “Tweets”.

SEO or Search Engine Optimization

Aside from web design from overseas “companies” there is no greater spam attack on your mailbox then SEO companies or individuals. The number of companies that claim they will move your website to number 1 on Google are limitless … if you will just sign here and contract with us for 12 months to get the job done. OTR Web has written a previous article on SEO here in more detail. The truth is SEO begins with the overall strategic plan and architecture of your website, research into copy and keyword phrases and interviews with key people to determine your brand message … finally implementing that information into your website. Social Media and your online blog are key components of your SEO action plan.

Some unscrupulous SEO firms do all kinds of nefarious tricks to try to fool the search engines, but in the end such SEO tactics will fail. Why? Because the search engines, more often than not will penalise websites for such questionable tactics. When considering enlisting the aid of SEO firms promising the moon, consider whether or not a short term gain is sufficient to balance the effect of a long-term penalty?


Web DevelopmentSEO and Social Media are a combined package and if done right will help to propel your business into the forefront ahead of your competition. If you understand that your business requires a web presence that will work and deliver your brand then you are on the right track. Not every business has the skills required to deliver a successful web presence … and that is understandable. If you asked me to build your house you could have a problem on your hands as I am not a carpenter, or electrician or plumber or architect or roofer or contractor … well you get the idea. It takes a team to build a house and it takes a team to build a web presence that works. If you need a team to work through the processes then we at OTR Web are here to help you. You can contact us on our Facebook pages, Twitter pages, join us in our Google+ circles or just contact us direct.

Take a moment to connect to our Social Media links on the left and below and if you Like us on Facebook we would be very pleased. As well your comments (below) are always appreciated.


Your Website Delivers a Message … for Better or Worse.


How often have you searched for a product or service, and the sites you have come upon speak about themselves, their history and their great products or services? You, the potential client are then left to determine the “if” or even “how” this particular website can meet your businesses specific needs.

The reality is that many of your website visitors will then “bounce” away because they are looking for a solution to their problem and really do not care about you or your products … unless you can portray that your site can meet their needs. The question then is how can this be accomplished effectively?

  1. Determine your specific market. When I was in the life insurance business (a lifetime ago) I was told that if you throw enough mud against the wall … some of it will stick. I suppose there was/is some merit to the comment but I did not like it then and I do not like it today. To my way of thinking it made more sense to make 10 targeted calls and close them than to make 100 mud-on-the-wall calls and hope to close 1 or 2! If for example my target market is “trucking web designers” then we need to build the web pages to attract and qualify within that specific market and not dilute the message and impact by attempting to appeal to a broader market.
  2. Resolve a need. To accomplish this you must be knowledgeable about the market and the specific needs of that industry. Sticking with the transportation industry as our example, determine the needs and relate a story of how you can resolve that need in a manner that the reader can relate with and to for their business. Some of the example transportation needs:
    1. Driver Recruitment and Retention
    2. Market penetration to pre-determined segments
      1. Regional Carrier
      2. Over The Road Carrier – National
      3. Dry Freight – LTL, TL
      4. Refrigerated Freight – LTL, TL
      5. Bulk Carrier
      6. Household Mover – local, regional long distance
      7. 3PL
      8. Brokerage
      9. Warehousing and Storage
    3. Social Media Campaigns
      1. Facebook
      2. LinkedIn
      3. Twitter
      4. Blog
      5. Social Media Console Manager
  3. Tell Your Story. Once the specific market has been determined and the needs of the industry established then it is time to relate a story of how your company can resolve those needs. A short story with images that are relative to that story creates a memorable image within the readers mind and will bring about the all important next step … contact. Again using our example of “trucking web design” we could write about how a client called concerned that one of their customers had been looking for 3PL services in a particular city and when doing a search their trucking company came up … but not relative to 3PL services. Can you get that corrected  for us so that our trucking company shows for 3PL within this city when a prospective client searches for that phrase? A few weeks later comes back the response … that is fantastic, we are on the first page. How do you do that!? Or you can tell a story about Driver Recruitment and how with the new web pages, blog and Facebook we actually have drivers calling us and posting to our Facebook telling us that they are applying. You guys took the time to find out about us and delivered our message.
  4. If you caught my interest I might want to know more about your products or services features … but my first impression had better be about the benefits you bring to me because that is what is going to capture my interest. It might be relevant somewhere that you have been doing this for over 12 years as that shows me you will probably still be around when I need you again, but only if you can show it as a benefit to me.

Professional web development is a team project. In the same manner as truck drivers by themselves do not form a transport company; a web designer cannot make a website development company. It takes a professional team to build an effective website that works. If you are looking for a team approach to your website development then take the time to contact OTR. We are here to build for you … a website that works.

OTR Web Solutions Inc.


Social Media Content Marketing – Now find the time



Social Media Content Marketing is a must for business; but many SMB’s will not spend the time necessary due to varied internal constraints.

We all have the best intentions when we read an article or blog post on what we need to do to make our business better by reaching out to customers, answering their queries and expanding our brand. We say we have to do this … but then we get busy running our business and we just never get it done. Maybe we even assign someone to look after the Social Media component but it is in addition to their other work and well it seems that the job just never gets done right. That at least has been my experience with many of our clients … good intentions but a lack of time to make Social Media work for them successfully.

So what are your alternatives? I think we can all agree that the status quo is not going to cut it so where does that leave your business? You can:

  1. Do nothing … there is just no time for this Social Media stuff
  2. Do it yourself and just make the time … oh and learn how as well
  3. Delegate to another staff, train them and move some of their current responsibilities to another person
  4. Hire a new staff person whose sole function is Social Media and Content Marketing
  5. Select and hire a firm to look after your Social Media and Content Marketing

The Lead Copywriter at OTR recently wrote an excellent blog post about the difficulty in extracting copy from new clients and how we resolved the issue with the end result of creative market ready copy in a timely manner for our client web sites. A positive “win-win” for both the client website and our copywriter’s sanity.

This concept of direct personal client interviews and in-house research followed by effective and creative copywriting that portrayed the brand and message of the client company has proven very successful. The natural progression was to migrate this same concept through to our Social Media Content Marketing for our clients creating another “win-win” service.

If you can effectively develop, write, monitor and manage your Social Media and Content Marketing campaign within your company then you are well ahead of the game. If not, then you can look to a company like OTR Web Solutions to develop, write, monitor and manage your campaign for you … and at a reasonable monthly cost.

OTR will provide you with your own control panel to review and add Blog posts, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and many other Social Media platforms as well as the scheduled posts we will make for you. OTR offers professional Social Media management.


OTR Web Solutions Inc