The Marketing Way

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We put a telescope on the intersection of marketing and small business. Follow us via the social media platforms in the footer so you never miss out on a mission-critical update.

How the Backend of your WordPress site works

You probably know that websites have frontends (what the public sees) and backends (the technology that creates and serves them).

In this post, we will recommend articles from our sister site, Mobile Atom Code, that look at the coding languages, databases, and servers of WordPress. Peruse them at your leisure to see how they make the backend of WordPress work.

The Coding Languages of WordPress

The coding languages that make WordPress work are:

  • HTML
  • CSS
  • PHP
  • Javascript
  • SQL

Put simply, HTML provides your site’s meaning and structure. CSS provides its aesthetics. Interactivity and functionality are provided by PHP and Javascript. These are the frontend languages used in WordPress. SQL is the language that allows your visitors to interact with your site’s database(s). These languages control what is seen in the browser.

The five articles linked below provide overviews and resources for additional information.

The Servers of WordPress

The servers that make WordPress work are:

  • Apache

According to TechTerms, “A server is a computer that provides data to other computers. It may serve data to systems on a local area network (LAN) or a wide area network (WAN) over the Internet. Many types of servers exist, including web servers, mail servers, and file servers. Each type runs software specific to the purpose of the server.”

The vast majority of WordPress sites use Apache and, to a lesser degree, NGINX servers. The two articles linked below provide overviews and resources for additional information.

The Databases of WordPress

The databases that make WordPress Work are:

  • MySQL
  • MariaDB

According to Oracle, “A database is an organized collection of structured information, or data, typically stored electronically in a computer system. A database is usually controlled by a database management system (DBMS). Together, the data and the DBMS, along with the applications that are associated with them, are referred to as a database system, often shortened to just database.

Data within the most common types of databases in operation today is typically modeled in rows and columns in a series of tables to make processing and data querying efficient. The data can then be easily accessed, managed, modified, updated, controlled, and organized. Most databases use structured query language (SQL) for writing and querying data.”

MYSQL is the database used by the majority of WordPress sites. The two articles linked below provide overviews and resources for additional information.

Wrapping Up

Explore the articles above at your leisure to see how the coding languages, servers, and databases of WordPress work together to make your site function and provide the best experience for its users.

Reuben Walker

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Reuben is Ringmaster of Mobile Atom Media and its division Mobile Atom Code. In addition to his content specialties, he is also a full-stack developer.

An ABJ graduate of the University of Georgia and MA graduate of Georgia State University he lives in Orlando, FL with his wife and English labrador. He received his full-stack certification from the University of Central Florida.

For great curated and original content on entrepreneurship, content, design, and code follow him on the social media platform of your choice via the icons in this site’s footer. Or join the 42,318+ followers of his Flipboard Magazines.

Add the power of visual marketing to your toolbox with Slideshare

Share Your Expertise

Like social media platforms Pinterest and Instagram, Slideshare’s success is due to the power of visuals.

Ah, slide presentations. You want to view one of these as much as you want a hole in the head or a severe case of COVID-19. Right? Maybe not.

Incredible as it may sound, they are an effective way to reach prospects via LinkedIn’s sister company and platform, Slideshare. It has more than 70 million, business-oriented users. Surprisingly, SlideShare has five times more traffic from business owners than Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and LinkedIn.

Like many tools, slide presentations or decks are poorly developed and presented by 95% of their users who give the technology an undeserved reputation. And to use them successfully on Slideshare decks have to be especially well-designed. After all, they are not going to have a speaker talking about them. But, maybe that’s a good thing since few presenters are worth listening to in any case.

Design tips for Slideshare

  • Your images and graphics must be compelling.
  • Keep the aesthetics consistent with your branding.
  • The formatting and typography of your text must be easy to read.
  • Divide your content into sections with descriptive keyword-focused sub-headings.
  • Use callouts to highlight specific areas of your slides.
  • Use title, organization, and narration slides.
  • Tell a dramatic story and keep it simple.
  • Make it urgent, useful, and unique.
  • Encourage sharing of your content.
  • Include a visual call to action.

If your decks are convincing people will like and share them. They can also follow you as a presenter and receive notifications whenever you upload new presentations.

You can add videos and pdfs to Slideshare, but decks work best. A hybrid approach could involve adding audio to your presentations and showing them as a video. This strategy would also allow you to share the content to YouTube.

It’s about research Continue reading “Add the power of visual marketing to your toolbox with Slideshare”

The Essentials of a LinkedIn Marketing Strategy

LinkedIn can be a valuable social media platform for your business. If you are in the B2B sector, having an effective LinkedIn marketing strategy a must.

Link Up Your Business

Is LinkedIn more than “Connecting the world’s professionals to make them more productive and successful”? That’s their slogan and there is a lot to it. It’s a social media platform that has benefited greatly from its acquisition by Microsoft.

When you use your individual account, it’s the new resume, useful for creating a personal, professional brand, and a way to make valuable connections in the B2B space.

Screenshot of mobile LinkedIn post.

Using a LinkedIn company page, it’s another avenue for discovery via search and a way to show credibility, authenticity, and trustworthiness.

But how can you profit from LinkedIn as a small business? Like any platform, it will depend on your firm and your industry. If used appropriately and strategically, there are two general ways a LinkedIn marketing strategy can benefit your company.

They are social selling and thought leadership.

Social Selling

We covered this in detail in an earlier post, but, here’s a quick reminder of the definition of social selling from Hubspot:

Social selling is when salespeople use social media to interact directly with their prospects. Salespeople will provide value by answering prospect questions and offering thoughtful content until the prospect is ready to buy.

You and your sales team use your content or targeted content curation to move prospects through your buying cycle towards a deal.

Participating in group conversations is a good strategy. Ask questions and answer those from other group members. This technique builds your employees and company’s credibility. It also leads us to thought leadership.

Thought Leadership

Thought leadership is where you publish original content and share curated content to demonstrate your company’s competence, expertise, and trustworthiness.

You have to prove your value to a prospect before you ask for an in-person conversation much less a sale. They want to find someone who is an expert and can solve their problem. They want to stop searching and start buying. Your content makes them select you.

Besides publishing great content on your blog, you can publish it on LinkedIn Publisher (“publish a post”) and “share an update” on LinkedIn.

Publisher is an effective way to repurpose content from your blog. Updates could be original or curated. Always include an engaging image and don’t forget to include your link. 😉

When you are publishing on LinkedIn, you are are blogging. So use the same techniques and strategies covered in this earlier post. The home of these long-form articles (Publisher) or updates is your company page.

Screenshot of LinkedIn company page.

And by the way, don’t publish crap!

Setting up your LinkedIn Company Page

Continue reading “The Essentials of a LinkedIn Marketing Strategy”

The Essentials of Facebook Marketing

Facebook can be a valuable social media platform for personal service/products oriented businesses. But only if you use it strategically.

It’s About Inquisitiveness and Boredom

I have to admit that I hate Facebook, its fake news, its business practices, its destruction of democracy, and most everything it represents. I dislike the type of people that are obsessed with it. Like nicotine and heroin, it is an addictive product. However, in business, you are not necessarily out to do what you like to do. You are out to help your customers and fellow man.
So I am still (however reluctantly) writing this post about Facebook marketing. It is useful for some small businesses, especially those that provide personal services. And it is especially relevant for those who target hobby, gardening, household, fashion, exercise, and entertainment activities. Although for these I recommend their less evil sister Instagram.
Graphic of why people use Facebook.

Listening for the Passion

Not many professionals use Facebook for development or product research. If you are going to reach them, you will do so tangentially while they are using the platform for personal reasons.
Listen to what your fans are posting and sharing so you can discover their interests. You want to use emotion invoking strategies to tie your content into your fans passions.

Entertaining is the Ticket

While Twitter is more of a communications platform and more mobile friendly, Facebook is more of an entertainment platform for small business. It is also heavily skewed toward use on mobile devices. Your website must be mobile friendly if you want your Facebook fans to visit the content you promote from there.
Facebook is more shallow than most social media platforms. Most users are not there to be enlightened or educated. They are there to keep up with their friends and gossip. It is celebrity-oriented. Your content must be entertaining if you want to cut through the fluff and nonsense that makes up most of your fans’ timelines.
Notifications are not quite as critical as they are for Twitter. Still, you may want to set them up. Go to settings and select how you want to be notified of your notifications.

Driving Traffic to your Website

In an earlier post about blog posts, I noted that building significate traffic to your site via content marketing is a marathon, not a sprint. The same goes for social media, and Facebook is no exception. In fact, doing it via Facebook marketing is more challenging and less rewarding than other social media platforms for most small B2B firms. You need to use Facebook smartly and strategically to succeed.
You need to answer questions, demonstrate your expertise, solve problems, inform and more.
Promote evergreen content from your site. You want your fans to trust your content judgment and value the original content you post. That will make them more likely to click through to your site and give you a chance to convert them into customers of your products and services.
For better or worse Facebook is now a “pay to play” platform when it comes to small business marketing. At best only 2 – 5% of your page’s fans will organically see your posts in their timelines. If you want traffic to your site, you need to hand Facebook some of your cash.

Acquiring Fans

Here are some tips and strategies for gaining fans:
  • post great content.
  • use relevant #hashtags.
  • make sure you have a follow button on your website.
  • make sure you have share buttons on your website’s pages and posts.
  • guest post content on other companies pages that offer complimentary products or services to yours.
  • have links to your Facebook page on your other social accounts, in your email marketing, and in your email signature.
  • swap promotional posts with other companies pages that offer complimentary products or services to yours.
  • have experts in your niche answer questions from your fans in a special Q&A session.
The more you post, the more users you will get to like your page. Posting great, shareable content with strategic #hashtags is paramount to success. You will also need to share quality content via curation. There is more on that below.

Setting up your Facebook Company Page

To optimize your page:
  • fill out your entire profile.
  • make sure your images are the appropriate size and compelling.
  • have informative content in the about section.
  • use appropriate tabs and strategically sort them.
  • activate your CTA Button.
  • add apps as needed.

Types of Posts

Continue reading “The Essentials of Facebook Marketing”

The Essentials of a Twitter Marketing Strategy

Twitter is a fantastic tool for learning and sharing knowledge that benefits both you and your customers.

It’s About Knowledge

Like several social media platforms, the content on Twitter contains a fair amount of nonsense. A large part of its traffic involves commenting on television during live broadcasts and streaming. Politicians and “celebrities” can vaingloriously spout off about themselves. And it’s not immune from mean-spirited trolls.

Yet, it is still a valuable tool for small businesses like yours. You will benefit most from using it to get and spread knowledge. In reality, Twitter is more of a news platform than a social platform. Most people are readers, not tweeters.

How can you make the most of these potential benefits? Start implementing your Twitter marketing strategy by doing the following three things.

Listening to your Prospects

Social media is perfect for listening to your prospects and current customers/clients. People are not shy about venting on Twitter. They feel free to be more forthright because they can have an anonymous username.

It will be easy to see the frustrations and problems your customers struggle with daily. Paying attention to their tweets will give you the knowledge you need to develop and promote products that solve their problems.

Pay attention to what people are tweeting. Pay special attention to what they are favoriting and retweeting as well as who they are following. Follow your prospects’ influencers yourself.

Whether you use Twitter to market your business or not, it is a good way to educate yourself about your industry and customers. Take advantage of it.

Communicating with your Customers

Twitter is a mobile-oriented platform versus a desktop-oriented one. This makes it a great tool for communication.

Some businesses, especially those in consulting or tech, use Twitter to communicate with prospects and clients. It is very useful for customer service communications. Be sure to set up notifications for when you are mentioned in a tweet so you can reply within an hour. Set them up for new followers, retweets, and favoriting as well.

Driving Traffic to your Website

Like your blog, building significant traffic to your site from social media is a marathon. There’s no instant fix. Like email, you should never buy followers.

While it is a bit of a vanity metric, you will need to acquire followers on Twitter. To gain followers, you will need to share quality content. The best way to do this is via curation. There is more on this below.

Similar to your blog content, your Tweets should demonstrate your expertise. Answer questions. Solve problems, inform and even entertain your followers.

Be sure to share the evergreen content on your blog consistently. If your followers value the content you tweet, they will trust your judgment and visit your site’s content as well.

Acquiring Followers

@Buffer has shared ten effective ways to gain followers.

The more you tweet, the more followers you will gain. All the advice in this graphic is valuable. But posting great, shareable content and using #hashtags are critical.

Types of Tweets

Continue reading “The Essentials of a Twitter Marketing Strategy”

Why Social Selling is the best selling

Social media platforms are the third pillar of your content marketing strategy. And they are a fluid pillar, evolving daily.

Bring the Rain

The social platforms your business should use will depend on your industry, your business, and most importantly your customers.

You will need to go where your customers and prospects are engaging with social media. Our other posts look at individual platforms. But, a common thing you will do with all of them is engage in social selling. It is the tactic that can make your sales team into Rainmakers.

Hubspot has a good definition of social selling:

Social selling is when salespeople use social media to interact directly with their prospects. Salespeople will provide value by answering prospect questions and offering thoughtful content until the prospect is ready to buy.

Social media is also where your sales team will find and research prospects. They can initiate a relationship and nurture it through the sales cycle.

As you know, relationships are at the heart of any sales success. Social selling just lets you develop them at scale.

How is social media different from the other pillars of content marketing? Contently has a good explanation:

…social is inherently spontaneous, while content tends to be carefully crafted before it’s set loose upon the world. Social tends to be reactive; content, on the other hand, sparks conversation. And, finally, content is generally made by an experienced creative professional: a writer, designer, video producer, etc. Social? Not so much.

Social media is where your team members (that are not your content producers) can help your marketing efforts. However, they will be posting and sharing on their individual social media accounts, not your company accounts. And they should have separate accounts for business as opposed to personal accounts.

However, they will be posting and sharing on their individual social media accounts, not your company pages. And they should have separate accounts for business in addition to their personal ones. For example, if they have a personal Twitter account they should open a second one for social selling.

In Sales, Change is Constant

The profession of sales is quickly changing, but the role of social media in sales is changing even faster. These new communication methods are vital tools that will play a big role in your future sales success. The concept of social selling involves using them in a strategic manner in order to strengthen relationships with your clients and prospects.

But before we get into what to do with your social selling strategy lets take a quick look at how the sales process is changing.

By the time a potential client contacts you they are 60-70% through the buying process. They have been researching potential products and solutions in a “self-service” manner on a variety of online platforms. These include your website and blog. Social selling helps your team get involved in the buying process at an earlier point. The best way is by sharing content from your site/blog via social media.

Duct Tape Marketing believes you need to change your sales strategy in order to be relevant to potential customers. And most importantly to be useful to them. I agree. They note:

Today’s marketing minded salesperson thinks like a publisher and builds their own expertise by sharing and crafting a platform.

That platform is social media, and you need a social selling strategy to succeed in today’s market. You want to be providing the information your potential clients have been reviewing in a self-service manner prior to contacting a vendor. You want to be interacting with them online before they get 60% of the way through the buying process.

The goal is to become a resourceful and useful asset in your customers lives. You want to be seen as a trusted authority in your field. Your usefulness will make existing customers more loyal. And it will make potential ones more likely to initiate a relationship with you. Being useful and developing authority is part of effective content marketing.

After finishing part three of this book, you will have a better idea of the social platforms you need to use in order to create great relationships with your clients.

Concentrate on using two or three well rather than all of them poorly. Again, you want to go where your target audience is interacting with social media.

Now, let’s look at what you need to do to develop a social selling strategy.  Continue reading “Why Social Selling is the best selling”