Author Archives: Teylor Schiefelbein

Assessment Marketing: Building a Smarter Click Funnel

assessment marketing

Assessment marketing is a topic that we’re passionate about over here at Alter Endeavors. Why is that? Simply put, high-quality quizzes are an extremely effective tool that gives small businesses the ability to qualify and acquire leads like never before. To take things up a notch, our team has access to Catch Engine, a platform that makes creating powerful assessments incredibly easy.

We’re able to build logic systems that are as simple or complex as necessary — and the end result is a beautifully branded quiz that embeds into your website to capture leads.

Assessment Marketing vs. The Click Funnel

If you’re thinking… well, I already have a click funnel at play. Then, keep reading. While click funnels certainly aren’t a new concept and it is widely understood that they’re an important tactic to grow your business — assessment marketing can either augment an existing click funnel or replace it entirely.

Let’s break down the traditional funnel and analyze where things may not play out to your advantage.

1. Build your target audience.

2. Create ads that introduce your brand to this audience.

3. Create ads that educate your audience about your product or service.

4. Create ads that have a strong call-to-action (CTA), leading them to visit your website.

5. Hope they purchase product or submit a contact form inquiring about your service.

6. Re-target those who visited your website, but did not take your desired action the first time.

With so many variables at play, a lot of time, money and effort can be spent on these steps. If you’re reaching out to the wrong audience or your ads have a poor CTA, it’s likely that you’re not seeing a return on your investment.

Assessment marketing, on the other hand, beckons to the potential customer with the promise of something in return for their time (and email address). A high-quality quiz can introduce your brand and educate the user about your product/service at the same time — and by offering the user something of value, the quiz itself is the strong CTA.

What Makes a “High-Quality” Quiz?

To clarify, by “high-quality quiz,” we are referring to an assessment that, if filled out correctly and completely, provides valuable information to the user in the form of a “Free chapter” or informational PDF for example — giving the quiz taker a “taste” of the value that lies beyond if they were to fully commit to the product or service. In order to access the answers, the user simply has to provide an email address — making it an equivalent exchange. Assessment marketing is essentially a smarter contact form.

At the end of this blog post, we provide a list of Catch Engine quizzes that we consider to be “high-quality.” Rusty Shelton, Founder and CEO of our sister-agency, Zilker Media, also has a blog post outlining how to make a great quiz if you’re ready to get started on yours!

An Assessment Marketing Case Study

Trust us when we say that assessments make for a much more convincing click funnel. Curious to see this in action? Read this Facebook Ads Case Study that lays out how we were able to obtain a cost-per-lead of $0.35 using an assessment as the subject of our Facebook Ad Campaign. This is especially important to note because we have had campaigns with phenomenal cost-per-clicks using the tradition click funnel layout from above, but users would land on the page and bounce off without converting. Assessment marketing not only helps drive traffic to your website, but they’re more likely to convert once there.

Lead Qualification

Beyond lead acquisition, assessments also do a phenomenal job of qualifying these leads and segmenting them according to the quiz objective. If created correctly, users will be categorized in a way that allows a brand to assess how open an individual is to their product or service. For example, we have a “Site Health” Quiz that helps small businesses determine how secure and functional their current website is. If they get a clean bill of health, they walk away feeling confident about their web presence and we know that they are not contenders for a site re-design. This means less time chasing leads that have a minimal chance of converting in the first place.

If you’ve implemented the traditional click funnel and have seen little success, reach out to us about exploring assessment marketing. Our team at Alter Endeavors can create, design and market your custom quiz — leaving you with qualified leads to connect with.

Quiz Examples

Social Media Marketing: Storytelling vs. Selling

social media marketing

Social media is no longer an online space reserved for your aunt’s political opinions or pet photos. Users are accustomed to seeing content from both household name brands and local boutiques in their feeds. Heck, as we’ve seen with social media influencers, practically every profile has the potential of being leveraged into a brand. Needless to say, the online space is crowded and it has become more difficult for small businesses to stand out while promoting their product or service. So… how does a small business owner go about making their mark in the digital sphere?

What’s the Bigger Picture?

Our Digital Marketing team understands the intricacies of each social media platform, its guidelines, and its algorithm — but we also make a point to stress the larger picture to our clients. As an agency, we always advocate the ecosystem approach. Simply put, all of your efforts should work towards the same end. And what is that end you ask? Your website or physical store AKA where you actually sell your product or service.

An effective social media marketing strategy introduces your brand with an engaging origin story, informs how this particular product or service will solve real problems for the user, and how they can go about purchasing said product or service. Simple, right?

The “Storytelling” Approach in Social Media

Now it’s time to put the above strategy into practice. So — you boil down your origin story to convey why this brand exists and you create some visuals to add value to your story. Let’s imagine it’s a high-quality 4-minute video introducing the founders and explaining why they created this new product. Actually, we don’t have to imagine — this video from MatchaBar embodies the “origin story” perfectly.

Don't Knock The Hustle: A MatchaBar Story

What do Ansel Elgort, Diplo, Billie Eilish & Von Miller have in common? HUSTLE! Join the Matcha Brothers on a journey to launch the world's FIRST Matcha Energy Drink.

Posted by MatchaBar on Monday, July 16, 2018


I’m a fan of this video and the “Storytelling” approach. However, imagine this was all they ever talked about on social media. What if there was never any mention of other benefits of the product? Or no new updates on where to buy it as it rolls out across the country? What if there was never any mention of additional flavors or new packaging? As potential customers, we’ll only search so far before forgetting all about the product we once “had to have.”

The “Selling” Approach in Social Media

Where the “Storytelling” approach largely appeals to both ethos (credibility/trust) and pathos (emotions) — the “Selling” approach hits the logos (logic). The above video subtly appeals to your logic when it highlights the crash other energy drinks are responsible for and overviews the health benefits of matcha powder. But as a viewer, you walk away feeling especially educated about the brand itself rather than the product they’re selling. This is intentional — welcome to the MatchaBar sales funnel. Now that you feel like you know Max & Graham (the Founders of MatchaBar), you find yourself searching them on Instagram and looking for a list of ingredients. You want to know what this product tastes like and whether it really has no crash. If there are no Whole Foods stores near you, you may be searching MatchaBar’s social or website to see if it’s carried elsewhere. If the brand is utilizing the “Selling” approach in their social media marketing, you’ll be able to find all of this information and then some. [Update: they are and you can! It’s now 2 for $5 at Whole Foods]!

Now, let’s imagine that this video never existed and all of their social content just talked about pricing and where to buy the product… Where a “Selling” approach on its own may work for local car dealerships — actually, it doesn’t. The car companies themselves invest in content for the “Storytelling” approach to convince you to choose a specific because of the ~lifestyle~ it implies. On top of that, shoppers do take notice of the local dealerships that do more than “SELL SELL SELL!Austin Subaru being a prime example as they make their partnership with Austin Pets Alive! a foundational piece of their social media content.

All this to say; both approaches have their rightful place in your social media marketing. Take the time and effort to get your story right, spend the money to create high-quality visuals that add value to your story, and include clear CTAs (calls-to-action) for your audience to learn more about your product or service and where they can get it if they have to have it right this minute. *drives to Whole Foods*

If you need assistance doing any of the above; ironing out the story, creating the perfect logo, building the website customers can buy your product from — we can help. Tell us a bit about yourself here. 

Facebook Ads Case Study + Catch Engine Quiz: Dr. Claire Nicogossian

One of the most rewarding aspects of working with clients from different backgrounds is discovering new ways to help our clients pursue their passions.  As a licensed clinical psychologist, wife and mom to four daughters, Dr. Claire Nicogossian is passionate about helping mothers make time to nurture themselves on the journey of motherhood.  She created the Mom’s Well-Being community to help moms gain knowledge, skills and compassion to increase self-care and well-being in motherhood. In this Facebook Ads Case Study, we review how Alter Endeavors is able to utilize Catch Engine, an assessment marketing tool, in order to help our clients achieve their objectives. 

Growing the Community

Wanting to gain the attention of publishers for herself and her book proposal, Dr. Claire came to Alter Endeavors with the goal of growing her online following.  The specific objective entailed growing a relevant (read: not bought) community of 10K between her Facebook followers and her email list.

Dr. Claire needed a Facebook ad campaign to help her community grow, but first, she required a way to connect with her audience: parents who need self-care. 

A Quiz that Cares

In order to provide support for parents, they must first recognize their need for self-care, stress reduction and a supportive community.  We partnered with Dr. Claire to create both the “Burned Out Mom” and “Burned Out Dad” quizzes to help parents realize their own need for self-care and prevent parental burn out.  After taking the quiz, visitors receive helpful advice, tips and an invitation to join the Mom’s Well-Being community to receive further support.

Build It, and They Will Come…?

Well, not always.  You can’t expect your target audience to find your needle of content in the haystack that is the internet.  Hansel and Gretel (your potential clients) may need a little trail of breadcrumbs to find you.  With thoughtful targeting and valuable content, Facebook ads can be a powerful (and cost-effective) way to connect visitors to your site, product or service.

Our strategy was to build an audience that would be the most likely to need the information that Dr. Claire is offering (whether they realize it or not!) .ie – mothers of young children, working moms, mothers interested in self-help and self-care books, etc. Once we had our audience built out, we created an ad that introduced Dr. Claire in an authentic way, communicating how she has her own skin in the game and personally understands the struggles of motherhood with four children of her own. After this growing audience had been exposed to the ad a few times and seemed to feel more comfortable with Dr. Claire and Moms Well-Being as a reputable voice in this space — we introduced the quiz and its purpose.

From there, we created a short and to the point quiz and a short and to the point ad to go along with it. Giving moms the option to take the longer, more in-depth quiz should they have the time for it OR go the “Quick, Are You A Burned Out Mom?” route if they had a strong idea as to which category they would fall into and simply wanted the tips to combat burnout.

Combatting Burnout and Building Community

Not only did people convert and take the quizzes, 90% of those who took a quiz also subscribed to Dr. Claire’s newsletter. On top of that, the ad currently has quite the comment stream going as well as an ever-increasing number of shares. We invite everyone who likes the ad to like the Mom’s Well-Being Facebook page to continue the conversation there. If there were ever any comments from users that seemed to not understand the point of the quiz, saying something along the lines of “I don’t need a quiz to tell me I’m burnt out!” — Dr. Claire would personally respond by explaining the thought she put into the tips someone would receive after taking the quiz. That personal touch helped users see Dr. Claire’s larger mission to provide valuable information to parents who are suffering.

Facebook Ads Case Study: The Results

The end result is that we have surpassed Dr. Claire’s original goal of a community of over 10k and it continues to grow as we provide quality content and nurture conversation! Now, Dr. Claire is able to send her agent overviews of her website traffic, Facebook community and email list as proof that this topic is of interest to moms and dads across the country.

We love working with Dr. Claire and helping her build an authentic community where parents can connect and receive real support! Reach out if you’d like help growing your audience.

Catch Engine as a Lead Generation Tool

lead generation tool

Our goal at Alter Endeavors is to bring a unique strategy to our clients’ digital marketing ecosystem. We work with a wide variety of clients, but our most successful clients are those looking to drive engagement with their brand, rather than just short-term success. This includes both nurturing a brand’s community and identifying relevant leads. Catch Engine is a lead generation tool we often recommend to our clients because of its ability to grow email lists, amass leads, build data-sets, and so much more.

When we’re approached by small businesses, a question we’re often asked is, “How can I grow my business? I spend around 15 hours a week cold calling and attend every networking event I can. Surely there is something else I can do to help convert referrals to sales?”

Let’s say a particular company offers retirement assistance. Using Catch Engine, we would create a simple quiz asking, “Are You Prepared for Retirement?.” This quiz would then live on their website and could be circulated using social media advertising. In order to receive his or her results, the quiz taker is first required to input their email address. The email they receive following the quiz is completely customizable and is an opportunity to introduce the business and demonstrate how its services can be of help to anyone who is, in fact, not ready for retirement. By knowing where the client is in his or her retirement journey, you now have the information you need to follow-up accordingly. If the relationship requires more nurturing, you can easily continue the conversation through Email Marketing, and send your newfound audience monthly or bi-weekly newsletters. 

Catch Engine is the ultimate lead generation tool, as it allows us to grow your sales pipeline with high efficiency and low cost. Email Marketing then allows us to follow-up with the individuals who would benefit from your product or service most. The combination of these two services are our answers to every small business owner’s question: How can I grow my business? 

If you’re curious to see Catch Engine at work, here are a few examples of assessments Alter Endeavors has made for our clients:

For any follow-up questions regarding Catch Engine as a lead generation tool, contact us! 

A Digital Marketing Ecosystem: What Are You Missing?

digital marketing ecosystem

Taking it back to middle-school biology, an “ecosystem” is defined as “a system, or a group of interconnected elements, formed by the interaction of a community of organisms with their environment.” In reference to the above definition, your Digital Marketing Ecosystem consists of 3 different spaces, which contain various interconnected elements. How effortlessly these elements and their respective spaces interact with one another will dictate your success as a system (aka a brand). We’ll address the three spaces that every digital marketing ecosystem should consist of and further explore the elements that make up each space.

Rented Space

Your rented space is where you play by the rules set forth by the environment. For example, blog post links are fed to Facebook, high-quality photos belong on Instagram, and ready-made infographics are at home on Pinterest. As marketers, we post at the opportune time with the ideal frequency and we never exceed 20% text in Facebook Ads. In our rented space, we use the features available to us in order to share our message, and ultimately send traffic to the place where we can dictate the rules.

Earned Space

Your earned space represents the environment’s thoughts and opinions of your brand. It’s anywhere people gather to retell your story and review your services. It may be tempting to pay people to say certain things or employ black hat tactics to rise to the top of search engines — but the truth typically emerges at one point or another. To ensure the healthiest relationship between your rented, earned, and owned spaces, it’s best to stick to the basics: offer a high-quality product &/or service, create valuable content and continue to network within your industry and community.

Owned Space

The only space that is truly yours is your website. You dictate the format and the messaging. You’re literally the king of this domain. Trailblazers beware! While there is always room for innovation, your audience expects things to flow a certain way. Your owned space needs to play nicely with your rented and earned spaces — meaning the transition should be seamless. At no time should he or she have to wait for a page to load or bounce around in search of a phone number.

Enough with the ecological metaphors, how does one ensure their rented, earned and owned spaces are all working together? Here are a few ground rules.

Opt for complete solutions.

As a digital marketing agency, we often come face-to-face with small business owners who are unwilling to let go of the wheel. They either want to maintain control of each piece themselves, or they have sought out piecemeal solutions thinking that asset diversity applies to marketing. On the contrary, your rented, earned and owned spaces should feature the same messaging, to the same established audience and funnel all of these individuals to the same destination. This isn’t a scenario where your right hand shouldn’t know what your left is doing — the ideal digital marketing ecosystem consists of groups and elements that are all working toward the same end.

Nurture each space.

Because each space and their elements are interconnected, you shouldn’t neglect a platform where your audience lives. It’s important to first analyze data to identify where your audience in fact lives. If business is booming and Facebook is only responsible for a negligible percent of your website traffic and conversions — by all means, pull the plug! However, if your content is sporadic and adds little value to your community, we’d recommend giving it an honest go before writing off a space where 1.9 billion users live…

Let data drive you.

If you’re still wondering how one “identifies where your audience lives” — it’s time to take a dive into the data. At Alter Endeavors, we don’t believe having a presence in every available space is the best approach. Our method is to select spaces based on where your audience currently lives online and where your brand can offer them value. While we customize the content for the functionality and the demographics of the platform, there is always brand cohesion. We incorporate analytics into our strategy to ensure users see more of what they engage with and are reminded of the owned space where they can easily purchase the product or employ the service they’re searching for.

We encourage you to audit your digital marketing ecosystem and identify which spaces may be lacking. If you’re unsure of how to go about this or know you’re missing key elements — don’t hesitate to contact us. We’ll dive into the data and provide the ecosystem overhaul your business needs.

Social Media Resources for Small Business Owners

social media resources

The key to successfully navigating the digital marketing world requires accessing a simple, yet exhaustible resource: time. Even with an impressive budget dedicated to your social media platforms and digital ads — without setting aside time to research best practices, you’re likely throwing money down a black hole. Before you decide to go all-in, we suggest that you first spend time learning the rules. We’ve rounded up several of our favorite social media resources that we subscribe to in order to stay on top of our game.


For those that are constantly on the go, driving from meeting to meeting — podcasts are a fantastic tool as far as social media resources are concerned. We suggest that you subscribe to the Social Media Examiner Podcast and tune-in for longer rides. This podcast is filled with interviews from industry experts and the occasional applicable gold nugget for your business. The Social Media Lab Podcast from Agora Pulse consists of data-driven content in short, digestible episodes. It’s an excellent way to test whether what you thought you knew as a digital marketer is in fact…fact!


The issue with solely relying on podcasts as your educational resource is that they do not require your undivided attention and valuable information often ends up going in one ear and out the other. Which is why Social Media Examiner and the Social Media Lab have website counterparts that you can quickly refer back to what image editing app is a must-download or a new Facebook Ad approach that could be a game changer. 


It’s important to set yourself up for success, and instead of assuming you’ll set aside time each week to continue your digital marketing education… why not have the education come to you? Dedicate a folder of your inbox to continued learning and sign-up for the newsletters that promise valuable information alongside their sales offers. Some of these include the Planoly Blog, Digital Marketer, and the Alter Endeavors Newsletter. And when it’s time to buckle in and take notes, you can easily navigate to your folder and see what’s new in the social media world.

Free Downloads

If you’re looking for a comprehensive document to reference, we’ve created this Social Media Best Practices Whitepaper to help you get started down the right path. We are committed to creating valuable content that helps bring back the human element to the digital sphere and are always available to help you get interactive!

If there isn’t time in your day to learn from these social media resources — we suggest you entrust the responsibility of managing your social media platforms to someone whose job is to do just that. While it’s often cheaper to be a “do-it-yourself-er,” the end result isn’t always the best quality… especially if you dive in with little experience and no guidebook. Our approach is to create a comprehensive social media strategy that addresses your goals and is both cost-effective and worthwhile. If you’d like to discuss ways we can help you achieve your business goals, reach out! 

3 Keys to a Healthy Agency-Client Relationship

agency-client relationship

While many of the skills I’ve gained as a Digital Marketing Strategist are thanks to experience on the job and keeping up with industry best practices, I have my clients to thank for a takeaway that transcends technical knowledge. It is in this role that I’ve learned what is necessary to establish and maintain a healthy agency-client relationship. Once you fully understand the need for a healthy agency-client relationship and you begin to put these tips into practice — the result is a partnership that is both mutually beneficial and enjoyable.


As a Digital Marketing Strategist, communication is incredibly important, as I’m ever dependent on updates regarding what’s happening in the business on a day to day basis. Without this information, it becomes difficult to highlight what makes my client’s brand different from another in the industry. If I hope to have a fruitful and mutually beneficial partnership with each of my clients, we must set aside time to ensure we are on the same page when it comes to our goals.The key is to educate your client on your process and commit to sending scheduled updates. This could include sharing the thought process behind your strategy before kicking off a campaign, or explaining why you’ve decided to pivot your approach following an analytics report. Your client is entrusting their image and hard-earned dollars to you — so it’s understandable why they want to know what’s happening! 


At Alter Endeavors, we reach out to our clients at the beginning of each month to send marketing initiative emails — which is basically a formal form of communication used to gather new information such as new products, upcoming events and the like. Each client can expect to receive this email each month, no matter if we had a phone call or email exchange the day prior. Beyond that, we love to schedule face to face meetings, if possible. Meeting for coffee or lunch helps foster a personal connection and makes for a more productive meeting since you’re not waiting for a response via email. The goal is to walk away from these meetings knowing what next steps need to be taken and from there, carrying out the next steps! Every so often, those proposed next step are unrealistic — which prompts me to let the client know what is realistic. A healthy relationship with your client is built on open communication and consistently holding up your end of the agreement. Expectation management is key and at the end of the day, reporting small and consistent wins is much better than always overpromising and underdelivering.


My last tip is possibly what sets Alter Endeavors apart from other digital marketing agencies. Each of our Strategists is emotionally invested in our clients’ businesses to some degree. We recognize that their success is our success and vice versa. To be quite honest, there have been many times when I wake myself from sleep to write down a future caption or ad campaign idea. While there do need to be clear boundaries, bonding with my clients on a personal level helps me better understand their brand — therefore making me a better Digital Marketing Strategist. 

By building an agency-client relationship based on communication, consistency, and care — I am able to spend my time brainstorming new approaches, analyzing strategy and producing high-quality content. Whereas, if a client were working with a Strategist that lacks clear communication skills, rarely delivers and shows no personal investment… that’s just a recipe for poor results! If you’re curious as to where your current agency-client relationship falls, take this Adweek Quiz. If you know something is lacking, it’s time to speak up — your business could depend on it!

The Pros & Cons of Rented Space Online

rented space onlineIn Nick’s most recent blog post, Local Lead Conversion and How the Spaces Between Platforms Make It Happen, he defines a rented space online as, “spaces where many flock to talk, share and consume, but they do not own.” This includes social media platforms such as:

• Facebook
• Twitter
• LinkedIn
• Snapchat
• Pinterest
• Houzz
• Youtube

Perhaps your business has been “renting” these spaces for some time now, but have you thought about how these platforms influence the way you do business? Understanding the pros and cons of rented spaces online will help you better utilize these platforms while also acknowledging the need for owned and earned spaces online.

Pros of Rented Spaces Online

Platform is Established

The design and functionality of the platform have been decided upon — the hard work has been done. Essentially, all you have to do is fill in the blanks! As a new brand, you can have an online presence by end of day if you so wish. Besides frequently sharing relevant content with your audience, your rented space should contain your elevator pitch, your hours, your address, a link to your website and consistent branding. Simple as it sounds, this is not to be sped through. Look over your bio and about sections with the eye of a potential customer — use these spaces to answer questions before they have to ask.

Ability to Meet Your Customer Where They Are

These rented spaces online give you the opportunity to have a presence where your audience already is. Beyond that, your brand is also able to easily communicate with them! Submitting a comment card in store or finding the manager’s email address requires initiative that most people won’t take. However, tweeting at a brand or messaging their Facebook page calls for little effort. With each review, comment, and like — you are being given feedback about either your brand’s product/service or its messaging. It’s up to you to form a relationship with your customers and put their feedback to good use. 

Built-in Analytics

These platforms provide insight as to what demographics are interested in your brand and what type of content they’re engaging with. If you’d like to get granular, you even have access to information that asserts the best days and times to post! While the data can be overwhelming and a lot to wade through, these tools exist to help you take better advantage of your rented space online. 

Cons of Rented Spaces Online

May be Temporary

While business owners are risk-takers, they know to avoid putting all of their eggs in one basket. Which is why we don’t recommend acting as though you own these platforms. Having a fully developed Facebook page isn’t an excuse to forgo building a responsive website. All of these rented spaces should point to a space that you own, a.k.a. your website, so that you’re not scrambling to get something up when a platform has a temporary glitch or worse — becomes obsolete like Vine, the app for six-second looping videos or Google Plus, Google’s failed answer to Facebook.

Folks Conning the System

Although you and a competitor may be on the same platform, it doesn’t necessarily mean you’re both playing fairly. Occasionally, there are people that take advantage of the platform by capitalizing on loopholes. From constantly sharing click bait articles, buying followers and/or likes, and reposting images without giving credit where credit is due — not everyone follows best practices. At Alter Endeavors, we urge social media best practices over “black hat” marketing. Curious as to what is considered “best practices?” We’ve put together a free “Social Media Best Practices White Paper” sharing how we use best practices for our clients. You’ll have to turn to Google for more information on black hat marketing — we stay clear of dark magic.

Rules Can Change Without Warning

While Facebook & Instagram’s algorithms used to show us content in the order that it was posted, it is now prioritized in a way that’s supposedly more customized to the user. You’ll see posts from family and close friends first — while those you rarely interact with are relegated down. This makes it more difficult for brands to reach their own audience, as a roofing company or clothing store neither fit within the definition of family, nor friends. And how do you reach those who already like your page? You “pay to play” by boosting posts and running ads to reach and grow your audience. Changes like these heavily impact brands that don’t have the budget to participate, but there’s little we can do besides make due with what we’re given! 

Whether you’re a social media hater or lover, it is a necessary piece of the digital marketing puzzle. We take full advantage of this rented space online for business owner’s that don’t have the time to pour over analytics or research recent changes but see the value in meeting their customers where they are. We’re always available to discuss how our Social Media Team can help manage your rented space online!

Why Every Digital Marketing Company Needs a Content Strategist

While many companies know the importance of supplying interesting content as well as the importance of creating a well-thought-out strategy, the title “Content Strategist” is still not seen as often as you may think. While this role plays a key part in the success of any Digital Marketing company, the duties of this position are still unclear to many. At Alter Endeavors, we are privileged to work with an amazingly skilled Content Strategist, Teylor Schiefelbein, who is an integral part of our team, and we’ve asked her to share with you exactly what that role entails here at AE.

First off, what does Alter Endeavors do?

Alter Endeavors is a Digital Marketing Agency, which can mean a lot of things nowadays. For us, it means that we communicate your passion and brand to the world through any means (that fit within best practices) necessary. We specialize in social media integration, digital marketing strategies, and website design and development so that they work cohesively with your offline efforts. Each member of our team is diligently working towards the same goal: reintroducing the human element to digital marketing.

What do you do as a Content Strategist?

In order to reintroduce the human element to digital marketing, I first have to understand the person behind the brand. My first task as a Content Strategist when meeting a client is to listen. Before I can speak on your behalf and accurately represent your brand online, I have to have in-depth knowledge of your business and its product or service. It’s imperative that I understand your business goals, the audience that you’re trying to reach, and what makes your business unique. This knowledge is paramount in developing an authentic and consistent voice to use across all digital marketing efforts. Whether I’m crafting a message for a social media platform, a Facebook ad or website content — it will represent you and your brand in a human and relatable way.

Why is having a Content Strategist Important?

We know that effective communication is essential for healthy relationships, and the same applies to the business-to-consumer relationship. Effective communication is not a one-way channel; it is an open pathway that requires interaction from the sender and receiver, the business and the consumer. While having a website that contains accurate and updated information about your business is incredibly important, the conversation does not stop there. Consumers have an overwhelming number of options in the marketplace and not only do they demand accessible information — they demand to know why they should purchase from your business. As a Content Strategist, it is my job to form a relationship with your audience and convey how your particular brand is unique. I create and reinforce relationships with online users by sharing valuable industry information, community happenings and engaging content. 

At Alter Endeavors, we strive to have open, clear communication with all of our clients. We hope this was just that, an informative and interesting way to learn exactly what it is our Content Strategist does. Now, hopefully, there is only one question left: Where can I find a great Content Strategist to promote my brand? Look no further!

10 Tools Every Social Media Manager Needs

social media manager

As a Social Media Manager, I spend a lot of time online. While I do consider myself an early adopter of technology, I also believe in simplicity. If I were to investigate every possible Chrome extension or iPhone app that promised streamlined content creation or increased productivity… I’d never get any actual work done. I’m sharing some of the tools that I use to create content for my clients and make my life easier. If you’ve discovered something better, feel free to comment what it is and why it should be on my radar.

4 Websites Every Social Media Manager Needs

Canva allows me to feel like a graphic designer, without having to pay for a program or get too involved. Canva is my go-to for creating graphics for Facebook posts or new banner images for whatever platform(s) the client is on. The custom dimensions also come in handy specifically for Facebook ads. I’m able to use custom colors codes so that everything matches branding-wise. It’s straightforward, but not too basic.

Once you choose a social media management dashboard, you go all in. Every option has its perks and its pitfalls, but linking all of your accounts is a sign of commitment. Hootesuite has been around long enough to make adjustments in response to user feedback and tries to stay current with our needs as social media managers. While I could imagine some sort of calendar for content planning, our old-fashioned Google sheet does the trick and happens to be free.

As a digital marketing agency, we use Basecamp 3 to communicate the current status of projects or needs of our clients across departments. As for the social media management department, we create a Trello board for each of our clients and then create “lists” with “cards” to refer back to for blog or post ideas. Once the blog is written or the link posted, the card is archived. Simple, neat, and free.

Unfortunately, there are people out there who click on your social media links without liking the post, or worse, like the post without clicking the link. Bitly allows you to track how many people actually clicked your link, and when. This a more accurate report of how many people are engaging with your content and what time of day is best to post.

3 Chrome Extensions Every Social Media Manager Needs

Check your grammar in a way “Spell Check” never could. This is especially helpful when drafting blog posts because it catches any potential errors within WordPress. The downside is that it doesn’t function within Hootesuite, so be sure to give those drafts a thrice over before publishing.

If you’re still saving from a website within Pinterest, you’re doing it wrong. The extension speeds up the process of creating pins for new products or blog posts. Bonus tip, make sure you have the Pinterest pixel installed on your client’s website to track what content is most often being pinned.

This is a request rather than a tip. Evernote is a program I’ve downloaded and extension I’ve installed, but I have yet to utilize. Is it worth incorporating? What does it bring to the table? I need solutions, not more issues!

3 iPhone Apps Every Social Media Manager Needs

A photo editing app that makes you feel like a photographer rather than a social media manager— at least on Instagram. I have my designated packs for each client and I apply whichever filter that keeps the overall photo feed aesthetically pleasing and consistent. I can also copy the filter changes from one photo to another, rather than having to repeat the process of increasing brightness, etc. 

If you’ve ever wondered how Instagram accounts splice one image into several, this is the tool. Besides that, Planoly allows you to visualize what your Instagram feed will look like before posting the photo. Once you upload possible contenders, you can then move them around and schedule within the app once your order is decided upon. When the scheduled time arrives, it prompts you to open the app and copy over your caption, much like Hootesuite does for scheduled Instagram posts.

No, I don’t create client’s Facebook ads through the app. I’m the type of person that needs to sit down and see the ad on a computer screen before submitting. However, I have found that the app comes in handy when I’m on the go and need a reminder as to when the ad campaign ends or how much of the budget we’ve spent so far. I also like that it pushes a notification to my phone every morning with a summary of what was spent from our ad account the day before.

In this industry, it is a never-ending task to stay on the forefront of change. Some tools simplify the content creation and management process, but some are too costly for what they offer or have yet to work out the kinks. What tools could you not imagine your business without?