Friday, April 24, 2009

What your logo designer need to be told

While setting-up your own business, one of the key tasks you have is to create a logo for your company. Logically, you want your logo a perfect symbol that can rightly portray your business message to the target audience. That is why you need to be as objective as possible with your logo design no matter how small or large your organization is. It is however better to define certain design guidelines to the logo designer before starting your logo design project, so you can get a logo according to your exact need. In this piece of writing I am going to discuss what you should tell your logo designer before handing over your logo design task to him.

Your designer should create it simple

Before your designer start your logo design project, you just clearly communicate him that you need a simple yet powerful logo design for your company. Why simple design? You must have seen the logos of large organizations; their logos are very simple in design but very appealing to the eyes. For Instance, the “Swoosh” of Nike or the “M” of McDonald. They are very simple but leave lasting impression on the viewer’s mind.

Tell him that your logo should portray the message of the business

Another thing you should tell your designer that you need a logo which must portray the message of your business. This however doesn’t mean that your logo specifically portrays what your company does but simply describes from which industry you belong to. Like if you are a realtor, obviously you like to have a logo with the image of houses or something th

at can better tell you are a real estate person. In add

ition, tell him that color, design, font and other necessary element should be according to the business type. You can’t have a cartoonish logo for a real estate business or a dark black logo for children products.

Don’t let your designer to use clip art

Never allow him to use clipart. Clipart designs are already see

n by lot of people, and if a clipart is used within your logo, your logo will come out as an unprofessional emblem that cannot match with your business personality. Therefore, strictly prohibit the use of clipart; otherwise your logo will not be a one of its kind.

Always ask for vector format

Usually, when you go to any amateur logo designer, it is a greater chance that he will not design your logo with any vector based application. But if you still have found any not so expert designer, clearly tell him to provide logos in vector format. Vector format allow you to resize your logo as big as to print on a billboard and as small as to print on a pen.

Tell him not to overlap text with artwork

Some logos come only with text, some come as image only, but some logos have both the image and the text. So advice your logo designer to design in way that the image and the text should make a logo one thing, but should not get intermingled with each other.

After telling all the necessary aspect, now you should relax and let the designer do the rest. At the end of the day, you will get a perfect logo for your business without wasting time and money.

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This article has been a "guest post" from Ben Johnson of Logoinn, custom logo design service provider based in UK.
As a sign of mutual collaboration with LogoInn, and as a way of saying thanking all of my readers here you have a promotional code to get 15% discount in all of their services. Just insert "MKT-'01" while placing your order to get the discount.

I hope this will be useful for some of you ;)

MBA Internet Marketing Manager

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

CRM: Buying Software vs. building your own integrated web solution

To build or not to build … that is the question

Is it better to buy an existing CRM (Customer Relationship Management) solution or to build it in-house? The answers is clear: If you have a website and need to manage clients, It’s much better to build your own application than to buy an existing solution... And in this article I’m gonna explain why.

How to do it?

The idea is not just to build any CRM in-house, but to treat it just as another administration module of your website. The trick is to plan and build the CRM system at the same time you plan and build your website’s architecture (not after). The same programmers that will program your website should program your CRM interface, and using the same programming language. At the end, the goal is to automate most of the tasks that a CRM system must register as an integral part of the website, reducing in this way the amount of information that Customer Support Areas have to enter manually. Just like Google Analytics does, the idea is to build your website inserting small pieces of code that will track predefined customer behavior, but behavior that Google Analytics doesn’t measure and that’s specific for your business. For example, if your client needs to complete a 5 step process online (registering, uploading a file, confirming by e-mail, etc) to finish a sale, you design your CRM to track each step for each client. This way customer support personnel can call/email each client, knowing beforehand in which setp they abandoned and why, helping them solve their specific problem. With offline CRM solutions you can’t track customer behavior this way. Having the CRM application online allows any other party to access the information in real time.

I started working this way with ImprimaOnline and have continued working with this methodology in all the websites I’ve been involved since then.

If you adopt this way of structuring your web projects, you’ll achieve the following benefits.

Save costs by saving personnel time

It might seem counterintuitive that you actually save costs with this option being so many cheap CRM Software options available but the reason is simple; You save on one cost that is usually the most expensive in the long run: People. Of course you have an upfront cost of development, but this is usually one upfront cost compared with the neverending data entry and data checking costs associated with buying off the shelf CRM software.

Automating and integrating tasks into your website from inception, reduces dramatically the amount of time needed by Support agents in updating, crosschecking, validating and entering data into the system, and therefore reducing your company personnel costs.

Avoid unnecessary features

CRM tools, like most software, are intended to wide markets. These pieces of software have to serve diverse businesses, people with different needs and markets in different geographic locations. In order to meet all that the market demands to a piece of software, it usually has to have a lot of features, most of which you’ll end up not using at all. At the end, as a user you pay for a CRM software that does A, B, C, D, E and F when you only need features B and E. It’s true, with some SaaS provided by some companies like Oracle or Salesforce you can avoid this shortcoming… but only this one, not the rest.

Real information in real time

The system doesn’t need to be “updated” or “checked for duplicates”. By having the entire application online what you have at all time is the latest version of your information, no manual tasks needed, no additional typing tasks at the end of the week, no actualization is required. Real information in real time.


The first and most important reason why most CRM solutions fail is that they don’t adapt to the needs of the end user, usually Customer Suport Agents or Sales Reps. People tend to use the system for a while, but if it really doesn’t adapt to what he/she really needs, it will end up being a waste of money. The advantage of building your own integrated solution is that you can constantly tweak it and fine tune it to meet your end user’s request. If you have your programmers in-house, you can even do it do it without having to subcontract constantly someone else, because the same developers that programmed your website programmed your CRM solution.

One centralized database

Usually, when using an external piece of software (not integrated from inception to the web’s architecture like proposed here) the most common problem is that you will end up having 2 client databases (at least). You have some information that comes through your web and other that is managed by your CRM Software. To centralize both on one single database often requires manual interaction by customer support agents or sales personnel. Most of the times, this time consuming tasks of actualizing databases or checking for duplicate info usually are needed for reporting reasons (management wants to see historical data, trends or analyze something) but without a direct impact on the people that actually enters it. For example, if your Sales Reps use GoldMine, they’ll need to fill several forms after visiting a client. These forms will not be on the same database if the client registers later via web and the only solution to have one centralized database would be by manual interaction.

By having your CRM built as a part of your website you avoid these unnecessary manual interactions, entering customer data only once while having the extra benefit of having a more actualized and only one centralized database.

This is my view, with my experience …. but what is yours? Maybe you think otherwise?

Feel free to open the discussion.

Copyright MBA Internet Marketing Manager

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

How Google analyzes the top keywords on your website

Google recently filed a patent application that deals with the keywords that Google finds on your web pages.


Google's new patent filing describes a way for website owners to view the top phrases that Google assigned to their website. The patent shows that Google finds the most important keywords on a website with a phrase-based indexing system and it describes a method that could allow website owners to add additional related keywords.

How does Google find the top keywords of your website?

All major search engines index web pages based on the individual words that they find on the page. If certain words and phrases appear together on the same page, search engines assign a topic that is related to these words to the page.

For example, the words "Paris" and "Hilton" are associated with a woman instead of a city and a hotel, the words "Tiger" and "Woods" are associated with golf.

Google's patent application indicates that Google might plan to tell you what they believe are the top keywords for your website and let you suggest changes to these phrases.

How can Google find the relation between words?

Google has billions of web pages in its index. If Google finds that many web pages contain both the word "Paris" and the word "Hilton" then Google might assume that these keywords are related. The other words on these pages could give Google a hint that this special word combination is about a woman.

Words that frequently appear very close to each other could get a tighter connection. Google has a lot of algorithms that allow them to calculate the relation between different words.

What does this mean for your website?

Google does not allow you to suggest your keywords through a form yet. That means that you must use other methods to tell Google for which keywords you want to be listed on Google's result pages. That's why search engine optimization is so important.

Here are some things that you can do to show search engines that your site is relevant to a special topic:

  • Use a meaningful site architecture

Use a logical system to organize your website content. Create content sections that deal with different parts of your main topic and make sure that everything that is related to your topic is mentioned on your web pages.

Make sure that your web pages are put in the right categories on your website and that it's easy to find the different categories.

  • Create web pages that use different relevant search terms

If you want to get high rankings for the keyword "shoes" then it's not enough to mention the keyword "shoes" on your website.

You must also use related keywords such as "sneakers", "boots", "sandals", "footwear", etc. to show Google that your website is relevant to the general topic.

  • Find out why other pages rank higher than yours

If you ever asked yourself why another page has been ranked higher than yours although you perfectly optimized your pages for your search terms then you should analyze the inbound links of the top ranked pages.

The number and the authority of inbound links are important. However, it's also important that the links come from semantically and topically related pages.

Don't focus on a single keyword when optimizing your pages. Modern search engine algorithms require you to create a website that has been optimized for many different but related search terms.

Optimize different pages of your website for different but related keywords to get the best possible rankings in Google and other important search engines.

Copyright by Web site promotion software

MBA Internet Marketing Manager