Blog2021-04-07T15:21:37-06:00

3 Reasons Your Company Should Send Out a Monthly Email

Best practices for search engine optimization

Email newsletters are an essential component of effective marketing for any business. A massive bonus of marketing with a newsletter is that your customers have to opt in to receive communication, so you are already sending it to a captive audience that wants more information about your business. Check out our top 3 reasons to send out a monthly newsletter.

  1. Connect with your Customer. Monthly email communication is the perfect way to connect with your customer and keep your business top-of-mind. Customers want to connect with companies and brands they like, and they especially like being the first to know information, hence why people love insider newsletters. Giving customers an opportunity to connect with you will also help establish trust and create brand ambassadors. If you’re informing while also selling, you’re building a long-term relationship.
  2. Drive Sales. People are impulsive, and including an incentive like a coupon, special promotion, or call to action (Call us now!) can be precisely what the reader needs to take action. When crafting your email think about it as a vehicle for driving sales and creating new opportunities with your customers.
  3. Demonstrate Expertise. When you take time and effort to send a regular email newsletter, you show not only your ability to write and creatively craft an email, but you also convey your expertise. It is okay to brag a little about your services, successes, and simply why they should choose you. This will establish yourself as a strong industry leader and show why your skills or products are superior.

At Wendt, we recently went through the process of reinventing our newsletter. We dug into data and insights to help inform us what our readers were seeking. A newsletter is an extension of your brand, making it imperative that you give it a name. The new title of our newsletter is the Wendt Word, where you can expect to find marketing news, expertise, and a glimpse into Wendt culture. Sign up to receive it in your inbox here!

If you are looking for e-newsletter inspiration, we highly recommend checking out reallygoodemails.com, which provides great insights and examples of the best emails companies are putting out. With 306.4 billion emails sent and received daily in 2020 (source: Statista), you don’t want to be the only one that is not marketing your brand via email.

Kattie Meyer, Account Manager

The Wendt Agency

By |July 28th, 2021|Categories: Industry Trends, Wendt Buzz|0 Comments

Improving Your Website’s SEO, Part 2

Best practices for search engine optimization

In part one of this blog series, I addressed methods in planning your SEO (Search Engine Optimization) strategy, including keyword research, freshening up your content, ranking higher in search results, and copywriting dos and don’ts. But did you know that great content isn’t the only factor in ranking higher in search engines? Other factors that may be holding back the SEO results you are looking for include old content, such as dead pages, and not having an optimized, fast loading website. Let’s discuss what happens when a page has been deleted or is no longer relevant, but still can affect your rankings, and how the overall performance of your website affects SEO.

Cleaning up Old Content

What happens when you remove a page, post, or sell out of a product, or even change the URL of a page? The page, post, or item can still appear in search results because it was indexed but will become a dead link. This means people will still be able to click on the link but will instead visit a page that no longer exists. Think of it as a zombie. It’s still alive and it can potentially hurt you. Having too many dead pages in search results leads to link rot, which is just as lethal as it sounds. Link rot will likely turn away potential visitors or customers from looking further at your site, much like fleeing survivors of the apocalypse. That’s why it’s a good idea to audit pages or posts that are no longer available, whether they’ve been removed, or there’s been a change to the URL structure. You don’t need a hatchet to fight these living dead links, but you can easily combat them without even breaking a sweat or running for shelter. Just use redirects, which take the visitor to another page that provides similar or refreshed information. Apocalypse averted!

If you’re using a WordPress website, download the Redirection plugin or Yoast SEO Premium, which generate redirects based on any changes in a page’s URL structure and allow you to create custom redirects. A 301 redirect is used for a page that has been moved permanently and is no longer available and can direct traffic to a page with similar information. These are the most important type of redirects that can have the most impact on your SEO. If you have a lot of pages that have been removed and aren’t redirected, you could create a fun and innovative 404 error page. That way instead of visitors feeling like they reached a page by mistake, you can provide a game or interactive feature; so, they feel it was worth the time to accidentally land on a missing page.

Your Website’s Overall Performance

Having well-written and informative content is a huge help with ranking higher in search engine results, but search algorithms also take into consideration the speed of your website. Therefore, a holistic approach, or improving all aspects of your website, is a great way to rank higher and get more conversions. If your website takes longer than 3 seconds to load, not only will you potentially lose visitors, but also inadvertently drive them towards your competition. Also, having a website optimized for mobile devices is another factor that search engines consider. To test how fast your website is, use free online tools such as GTmetrix.com and Google’s PageSpeed Insights. If you have a lot of images, pages, or plugins on your website, here are a few resources that can help optimize the performance of your website.

  1. Plugin audits – if you’re using a WordPress website, look at the list of plugins that are installed and whether they are necessary or were left over during the development phase. Since plugins contain JavaScript, even when deactivated, they can still slow a site down. Delete those that you don’t need to help save some loading time.
  2. Caching plugins – cache is temporarily stored data that your computer stores and uses to access files quickly. This is great for website’s that aren’t frequently updated, however if you’re actively updating content, use a plugin to automatically clear the site’s cache daily. Or simply clear the cache with the click of a button when you make updates to serve up the most recent version of your website. Some plugins I recommend are W3 Total CacheWP Fastest Cache, and WP Rocket.
  3. Image Compression – if you aren’t properly resizing images before uploading them to your website, then larger images will load slowly on the front end, leading to a decrease in the overall load time of the site. Photoshop is a great tool for resizing and compressing images, but there is also free online software that’s simple to use such as imagecompressor.com and tinypng.com. If you don’t have time to compress all of the images on your site and re-upload them, you can add a plugin such as Smush Pro, which compresses all previously uploaded images as well as every image that’s uploaded while the plugin is active.
  4. Content Delivery Network – a CDN is great way to improve speed by serving the website on networks closest to your visitors. For example, if your hosting server is in California and a lot of your traffic comes from the east coast; the website will take longer to load the further a visitor is away. By using a CDN, such as Cloudflare, your website will be served faster and from a closer location.
  5. Hosting plan – if your site is still loading slowly after trying these steps, check your hosting plan. As a site expands over time and you’re locked into a smaller hosting plan, it’s time to upgrade the storage. Most plans increase by about $20 per package. If you have an active website and plan to stick around, it’s well worth the investment to upgrade.

A great looking, well performing website with useful information is the best way to satisfy your user’s needs on all levels. By auditing pages, plugins, and optimizing the performance of your website, you can deliver a much more satisfactory product that will also improve the overall user experience, and that’s a goal we all strive for.

Justin Porter, UX/UI Designer

The Wendt Agency

By |July 14th, 2021|Categories: Industry Trends, Wendt Buzz|0 Comments

18 Awards That Set Wendt Apart

Dos and Don'ts Guide to Virtual Meetings

The 42nd Annual Telly Awards and the 27th Annual Communicator Awards have been announced, and The Wendt Agency is the proud recipient of 18 wins. Our team is pleased to be recognized for the innovative creative work and strategy we provide our clients. And, while the awards are certainly an honor and recognition of our work, for us, it goes even deeper. These awards of distinction reflect the passion we have for seeing our clients succeed.

“Wendt’s clients’ needs and expectations are always our number one goal, so winning both Telly and Communicator Awards in addition to creating success for our clients, is truly special,” said Kara Smith, Creative Director.

Kara Smith, Creative Director

The Wendt Agency

Considered one of the largest and most competitive awards programs of its kind in the world, the Communicator Awards distinguishes creative excellence among marketing and communications professionals. The Wendt Agency won four Communicator Awards of Excellence and nine Awards of Distinction. Awards of Excellence are the highest honor given to entrants whose ability to communicate is the best in the field. Awards of Distinction are presented for projects that exceed industry standards in quality and achievement.

Established in 1979, the Telly Awards receive over 12,000 entries from all 50 states and five continents. The Wendt Agency won one gold, two silver, and two bronze Telly Awards.

Wendt’s winning campaigns were created in partnership with Achieve Montana, Central Montana, Helena Convention and Visitors Bureau, Montana Department of Transportation, Montana Farmers Union, and Montana Lottery.

Communicator Awards — 13 Wins!

Montana Lottery: “Mega Millions – Always Big” TV

  • Use of Humor
  • Award of Excellence

Montana Farmers Union: “Food Security for Us” Campaign

  • Integrated Campaign
  • Award of Excellence

Achieve Montana: Achieve Montana Website

  • Financial Services
  • Award of Excellence

Montana Farmers Union: “Food Security for Us” Website

  • Activism
  • Award of Excellence

Montana Department of Transportation: “Buckle Up Truck” TV

  • Causes & Awareness
  • Award of Distinction

Montana Lottery: “Mega Millions – Always Big” TV

  • Entertainment/ Amusement
  • Award of Distinction

Montana Lottery: “Mega Millions – Always Big” TV Shorts

  • Consumer Products & Services
  • Award of Distinction

Central Montana: “Field Trip” Campaign

  • Promotional
  • Award of Distinction

Montana Farmers Union: “Food Security for Us” Campaign

  • Marketing Effectiveness
  • Award of Distinction

Montana Lottery: Ford Payout Scratch Game Campaign

  • Marketing Effectiveness
  • Award of Distinction

Montana Farmers Union: Food Security Video

  • Social Responsibility
  • Award of Distinction

Montana Farmers Union: Food Security Video

  • Activism
  • Award of Distinction

Helena Convention and Visitors Bureau: “Safety First” Outdoor

  • Advertising Campaign
  • Award of Distinction

Telly Awards — 5 Wins!

Montana Farmers Union: “Food Security for Us” Video

  • Branded Content
  • Gold

Montana Department of Transportation: “Buckle Up Truck” TV

  • Public Service/PSA
  • Silver

Montana Lottery: “Mega Millions – Always Big” TV

  • Use of Comedy
  • Silver

Learn More

Want to learn more about how we create winning campaigns for our clients? Reach out to us, here. And sign up for our monthly newsletter, here.

By |June 23rd, 2021|Categories: Industry Trends, Wendt Buzz, Work|0 Comments

Endless Summer – Free Wallpapers

Outside is calling. Kids are selling homemade lemonade on the corner for 50 cents. The sound of lawnmowers in the neighborhood roar a bit too early in the morning. And new adventures are waiting to be experienced. Summer is officially here, and we couldn’t be more excited to enjoy every minute of it.
– Go for it!

 

-The Wendt Agency

Click to download wallpapers:

By |June 11th, 2021|Categories: Uncategorized, Wendt Buzz|0 Comments

Why Your Business Needs to Consider ‘Revenge Travel’ This Summer

Women's History Month

After more than a year of having the world shut down due to this nasty pandemic, we’re now starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel. As vaccination rates are increasing and case numbers continue to decrease, we’re all feeling the itch for getting back to the things that make us happy, feel free, and bring us back together with coworkers, friends, and family. For me personally, the daily email infusion of concert announcements makes me feel like a little kid in a candy store! Which one do I want to attend? Should I wait to see who else might be coming to one of my favorite venues? What if I miss a great opportunity! I’m already booked for four concerts this summer, and one of those is a reschedule of a canceled event in 2020. I missed those concert experiences more than I knew.

How The ‘Revenge Travel’ Trend Affects Business

Recently I came across the term “revenge travel.” With confinement, we can’t help but express the pent-up frustration that comes with not being able to travel or be together. Now we want to go, we can go, and we will go, as long as it’s safe. All indications are telling us that we can expect that people will be anxious to satisfy their revenge travel urges in places where they can spend time outdoors and where they feel safe and do not have to wear a mask. This includes beaches, rivers and lakes, places to walk, hike, and bike, national and state parks, and camping destinations. This is fantastic for all of us who are comfortable and ready to travel and enjoy the great outdoors, and we get the bonus of getting our economy back on track while we’re spending our cash on travel expenditures such as resort hotels, Vrbo/Airbnb, cabins and cottages, fancy food, tasty beverages, adventurous activities, and treasured items that will remind us of our trip.

As more people begin to feel comfortable getting out and about, businesses can take advantage of revenge travel trends such as increased family travel, travelers looking for unique experiences, and travelers exploring less-populated communities and national parks. By shifting to be aware of these revenge travel behaviors, businesses will be able to better tune their summer marketing content. At Wendt, we believe strategy is the foundation of success, and we work closely with our clients to develop and implement marketing that pivots appropriately when such trends occur.

Vrbo And Airbnb Embrace ‘Revenge Travel’

Think of how many family reunions, weddings, and gatherings with friends were missed in 2020. All those events will be vengefully planned for this year and in the immediate years following. The Vrbo brand has recently launched a campaign that positions Chrissy Teigen, John Legend, and family as its First Family in Residence. The objective is that the Teigen-Legend family will help inspire others to plan their longest awaited vacations and reunions ever. And stay in Vrbo properties, of course!

John Legend artfully covers Johnny Nash’s classic “I Can See Clearly Now” for this campaign as we watch the emotional and heart tugging experience of real-life families being reunited following the pandemic. https://youtu.be/Wx1l3-Kgjr4 Powerful, joyous stuff.

Everyone had to navigate a difficult year. Let’s get out there and take our much-needed break. Revenge is ours for the taking!

Brenda-Final1

Brenda Peterson, President/CEO

The Wendt Agency

By |June 9th, 2021|Categories: Reflections, Wendt Buzz|0 Comments

What You Don’t Know About Apple iOS Changes May Hurt Your Business

Dos and Don'ts Guide to Virtual Meetings

When it comes to the Apple iOS 14 changes, several things are happening in the internet space that have been transformative for digital advertisers. Many of them stem from legislation and governances adopted by technology platforms since 2020. Read on as our Wendt Media team shares their insights and expertise in these updates and learn how we help our clients navigate Apple iOS changes masterfully to successfully target audiences.

General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) enacted by the EU, is a set of guidelines that have been adopted by most American/Global technology platforms and ad services. The GDPR addresses how ad tech companies collect data. Browsers can leave bits of your user identifiable information across the web. You searched for a product, looked at colors and different aspects, and looked at comparable information. Those bits, known as cookies, are used by ad-serving companies to target users repeatedly based on the cookie data.

Retargeting campaigns result from cookies and the data gained from a user’s behavior on their devices. Cookies are instrumental in how data is gathered and utilized by ad-serving companies. Due to GDPR, many browsers, devices, and publishers now allow users to either “accept” or “do not track” the use of cookies/tracking on the site. Wendt expects retargeting estimates and campaign metrics to be somewhat lower than previous years from various ad tech platforms, including Facebook.

When you visit a site or app, you opt out of tracking; that data bit is lost to the ad tech serving company, and advertisers have now lost that bit of behavioral tracking. This has been occurring since early 2020. As a result, behavioral targeting is harder to do. However, it is still available from other sources such as Google and The Trade Desk, which have engineered their own “privacy sandboxes or unique cohorts.”

Pam Bennett, Senior Media Strategist

The Wendt Agency

ATT Policy and Audience Targeting

Advertisers are shifting to contextual targeting, search-based targeting, social and content engagement metrics, and ad assets and videos. Placement in content-rich, content-matching environments is one way of targeting and finding our audiences. Programmatic technology helps us correlate content and context to find prospective customers. Based on data from these sites, using first-party or content matching technology, we capture the user’s attention and clicks from this strategy.

BUT: Apple has now thrown a wrench in the mix. They have prioritized user privacy over targeted advertising, from any platform or app serving to Apple devices – anything that uses iOS 14. Apple has now implemented the ATT policy – App Tracking Transparency, and it is one of the most restrictive. The consent from users will prompt across every app and is not transferrable to ad networks. For example, an iPhone user will not be able to see or be served any behavioral or contextually targeted ads previously available before the ATT policy began. This rollout started in late March 2021.
However, this doesn’t change our targeting – for any digital campaign, we would still want to target all users regardless of their device/platform, but the ATT policy will impact the tracking data received from Apple devices.

We can still break out the data of various mobile users (iPhone vs. Android).

For our advertisers, this means:

  • Minor impact to targeting audiences and securing impressions – since it is based on inventory and cost.
  • We can still measure ad click engagement on your site and implement site pixels; GTMs (Google Tag Manager containers) and Google Analytics will be source one for providing the information of a user’s journey from ad serving your pages.
  • UTM tags can also be implemented for granular study of an advertising campaign.

In summary, the changing and dynamic forces in the advertising ecosystem impact users’ privacy and willingness to participate in data collection.

These changes will likely have the largest impact on social media tracking, specifically Facebook placements. Facebook has been openly and adamantly opposed to the Apple iOS 14 changes in the months leading up to the roll out. This is because these changes will impact how Facebook receives and processes conversion events from tools like Facebook pixels. So, as more people opt out of tracking on iOS 14 devices, ad personalization and performance reporting will be limited for both app and website conversions.

Tegan Bauer, Social Media Specialist

The Wendt Agency

Key Apple iOS 14 Changes*:

  • Campaigns with the objective of app install may be severely limited.
  • Real-time reporting will no longer be supported, and campaign data may be delayed up to three days.
  • Both app and web conversion reporting breakdowns, like age, gender, region, and placement, will no longer be available.
  • The attribution setting (see below) will change, which may result in a decrease in the number of reported conversions. The default for all new or active ad campaigns (this will not affect past campaigns) will be set at a 7-day click attribution window instead of the current 28-day click. o The attribution setting is the
  • period during which conversions can be credited to your ads and used to inform campaign optimization.
  • Facebook pixels will only be able to optimize for eight conversion events for each website domain.
  • Facebook may begin using statistical modeling to account for conversions and report results from iOS 14 users.

*Source: How the Apple iOS 14 Release May Affect Your Ads and Reporting. Facebook for Business. Retrieved 18 May 2021, from www.facebook.com/business/help/331612538028890?id=428636648170202&_rdr 

Since the rollout, everyone running ads through Facebook ad manager have been working to verify website domains and reviewing pixel conversion events to allow us to build and optimize using Facebook pixels in the future. This is all still very new, but Wendt will continue monitoring the situation and providing updates.

The Apple iOS 14 change has both good things and bad things for advertisers. In a nutshell, Apple is requiring app owners to ask for explicit permission to track users to other apps. Many people will certainly deny that. And it does limit some tracking and add complexity to online marketing efforts, which have come to rely on this specific type of tracking. However, this is not nearly the death of online marketing or tracking. It is just another adjustment in the highly fluid world of online marketing. One which applies to Apple products only (not that we all aren’t tied to our iPhones but …). Does that mean ad placement and spending might shift? Of course it does. But savvy marketers (and their agencies!) have been preparing for this and are already shifting communication strategies in ways big and small, such as leaning more heavily on contextual targeting to find an audience through the content or environment they are interested in and by working with programmatic vendors who have invested in cross-device tracking (remember that web browsing you do at your work computer?).

Carol Kruger, Senior Vice President

The Wendt Agency

By |May 25th, 2021|Categories: Industry Trends, Wendt Buzz|0 Comments