When you go quiet, so will your business…

powerful and creative EDMs

Which is why many reputable companies use EDMs to stay remembered and keep in constant contact with their database.

EDMs are all about communicating with your audience as you would if you could meet them in person. It’s a way to be heard, recognised and to build trust. Distributing regular EDMs to your audience enables you to provide a gentle reminder about your services.

EDMs in the marketing world have been classed as incredibly valuable, on the same scale as Social Media. It’s important to continuously capture your audience and stay at the forefront of their minds.

But how do you ensure your email campaigns not only stand out above the masses but get the results you are anticipating?

Here are some tips:

  1. Be consistent with your scheduling: If your audience is used to receiving an update from your company at a particular time and day of the week, schedule this accordingly. It’s important to remain predictable and consistent. This is a wonderful way to maintain trust, however ensure your content is strong to keep them on their toes. If you are successful, they may even get into the routine of specifically checking for your EDM at the same time each week.
  2. Timing is everything: Ensure your email campaigns are sent at the right time! Explore your market, know their activities and predict the most effective time to be noticed. Friday afternoons are always a bad idea as people tend to take annual leave on a Friday and are less likely to be in a work mindset. Monday morning inboxes are always a little too busy, they are flooded with higher priority emails, so yours may get lost or pushed aside.
  3. Create eye opening (email opening) subject lines: The first hurdle you face when sending an EDM is to ensure they get opened. For this reason, crafting a powerful subject line is everything!! In order to stand out  in a cluttered inbox you need a subject line which ignites curiosity and provides a potential solution to a problem or a need. Being direct is key, keep it short and sweet and keep it relevant.
  4. Avoid becoming a junk mail victim: In order to dodge the spam filter you need to avoid salesy words like “free”, “competition” ,“discount” and “win” in your subject line. Ensure there is copy in the actual email not just in image form, this certainly helps when it comes to bypassing most filters.
  5. Reveal the face behind your business: People connect with the personality behind the business, it gives them a sense of trust and intrigue. Consider including a video in your EDM to better express your message. There’s nothing more powerful than the voice of experience. Try an introduction video so your audience can get to know your entire team and showcase what they bring to the table.
  6. Keep it simple: Good simple copy is key, ensure it short, sweet, fluff free, nicely worded and real. It needs to be helpful, something they can take away with them. Draw your message to a simplistic call to action button and watch them flock to your website.

At Milestone-Belanova we create powerful and creative EDMs that get through the barriers and gets results. This is through well designed, punchy copywriting and segmented data management.

We have an in-house team with the right experience and capabilities to plan, design, develop, analyse and optimise targeted email campaigns. We can make your business look great through tailored creative messaging and professional designs, which will be executed through tried and tested platforms such as Infusionsoft and Mailchimp.

Don’t remain silent – wake up your business through regular digital marketing campaigns, what have you go to lose.

Is your business eligible for the $3000 Grant?

Did you know businesses severely impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic are eligible for a $3000 recovery grant to get their livelihood back on track?

According to the Service NSW Government Website ‘Marketing and Advertising’ has been listed as one of the recommended uses for the grant.

Whether it’s a marketing strategy you require to kick start the new financial year, a brand refresh, website overhaul, digital marketing campaign or gaining leads through engaging content creation, investing in a marketing professional will help your business to make a swift recovery.

Contact us for a free consultation. With over 20+ years’ experience in the fields of Marketing, Design and Website Development, the team at Milestone-Belanova will ensure your investment gets results. Together we can help to get your business back on track and performing better than ever.

Is your business eligible for the $3000 Grant?

Is your business eligible for the $3000 Grant? .Did you know businesses severely impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic are eligible for a $3000 recovery grant to get their livelihood back on track?.According to the Service NSW Government Website ‘Marketing and Advertising’ has been listed as one of the recommended uses for the grant. .Whether it’s a marketing strategy you require to kick start the new financial year, a brand refresh, website overhaul, digital marketing campaign or gaining leads through engaging content creation, investing in a marketing professional will help your business to make a swift recovery. .Contact us for a free consultation. With over 20+ years’ experience in the fields of Marketing, Design and Website Development, the team at Milestone-Belanova will ensure your investment gets results. Together we can help to get your business back on track and performing better than ever….#websitedevelopment #webdesign #marketingstrategy #graphicdesign #centralcoastnsw #supportlocalbusiness #covid19 #centralcoastbusiness #helpingbusinessespostcovid19 #sydneybusiness #milestonebelanova #marketing #beautifulwebsites #webdevelopment #designagency #milestonebelanova

Posted by Milestone-Belanova on Wednesday, 1 July 2020

We are back!

The Management Team at Milestone-Belanova would like to thank the efforts and patience our clients and staff have displayed during the Covid19 Pandemic, which had us working remotely in isolation and meeting virtually through Zoom and other platforms.

As a nation, we should be proud for the way we flattened the curve and this has seen us rewarded with a lift in restrictions.

As a result, we will be returning to our office in East Gosford from Monday 25 May 2020 where we can come together and collaborate on our clients’ projects in person.

We will continue to follow the rules advised by the Government and have put the below policies in place:

  • All staff and / or clients entering the premises are to have their temperature checked upon arrival.
  • Our office will be thoroughly sanitised and cleaned on a regular basis by a professional cleaner.
  • Staff will sit at least 1.5m apart so there is appropriate distance to avoid the spread of germs.
  • There will be no more than 5 attendees at every meeting held in the Milestone-Belanova boardroom and participants are to sit at a safe distance apart.
  • Meetings are to be postponed should a participant feel unwell.
    Staff will work from home should they feel unwell.
  • If any symptoms, similar to Covid19 occur in staff members, they are to be sent to the clinic to be tested.

We are excited to open the doors to our office again and we invite you to meet with us so we can collaborate on your marketing and help you get back on track post Covid19.

We welcome you to contact us should you wish to arrange a free consultation or to simply catch up with your favourite Milestone-Belanova team member. Here’s to a brighter future!

10 Tips for Marketing Your Way Through COVID-19

Think outside the box

1. Reinvent Your Marketing Plan

Now is not the time to simply jump from one tactic to another, hoping something will bring in leads.

Put a plan together that takes advantage of the new opportunities that exist and eliminates those tactics that are no longer available such as face to face events, networking or sales presentations.

Obviously this will involve more digital programs but it could also mean amending your targeting and  your messaging so that you are more relevant to the people who have a current need for your product or service and the ability to purchase now.

If you previously had a marketing plan, review it step by step and remove anything that will no longer either be possible or effective. Rethink what this new world is now offering as it doesn’t have to be doom and gloom for all businesses in these disrupted times.

If you don’t actually have a marketing plan in place, now is the time to develop one! Spend this quieter time getting your marketing plan in order so that you come out at the other end of isolation stronger than ever to dominate your market!

Social media buttons

2. Go Social

The social environment is exploding at the moment as people crave connections with other people online.

It is the perfect time to get your brand noticed with messaging that is relevant to your target audience’s current needs.

Have a plan for your social media content, deliver valuable and relevant information and make sure you have a high level of frequency so that you stand out amongst all the other brands that are bombarding social media platforms at the moment.

If your workload has reduced, now is the perfect time to build connections and content on platforms that you were too busy to use previously.

Write articles for LinkedIn, promote valuable content on Facebook, create videos for Instagram, use display ads and build the story behind your brand.

There are many options available but make sure you have an effective social media strategy and create stand out, valuable and relevant content.

Online business

3. Take Your Business Online

There are many businesses that have to date avoided doing business online, other than via listings on generic website directories. If you take advantage of online marketing during COVID-19, you could position yourself for significant and long term growth once operating restrictions are lifted.

For example, if you previously ran a retail store or were in the hospitality industry, start selling online. Online sales are going through the roof now that shoppers can’t visit their local stores. In fact, the boredom factor of having to stay at home is increasing the desire for shopping overall.

Building a web store is easy and affordable and could potentially provide you with an additional revenue stream for the long term.

If you are in hospitality, you may be in a position to provide home deliveries but don’t just rely on regular customers to phone in their orders. Build an online ordering and payment system that will showcase your menu, collect payments online and protect your drivers with contactless deliveries. You could even set up a Click and Collect service.

If you are in entertainment or training, create an events calendar on your website and deliver your events via live-streaming, webinars or podcasts.

If you are in a service industry, why not sell additional related products online via a cart to supplement your income.

There are many opportunities that exist to build your revenue through digital marketing. If you’re not sure how to make the move online, book a free video or phone consultation to determine the best path forward for you and your business.

Mobile delivery app

4. Remarketing and Retargeting

If you have a good website that attracts a reasonable level of traffic, take advantage of every visitor with remarketing and retargeting programs.

Keep your brand and promotional offers in front of your prospects by delivering social media ads to them on Facebook or Instagram once they’ve left your website.

Send targeted eDMs (email marketing) to website visitors to build your brand awareness and reinforce your offering.

You can tailor the content of your social media ads and eDMs to reflect the pages and products on your website that your prospects have shown an interest in.

It can take several connections with a brand for a prospect to commit to a purchase, or even an enquiry, so getting in front of a prospect multiple times has been shown to dramatically increase conversion rates.

Don’t waste a qualified lead! Optimise your conversions through a highly cost-effective and easy to implement remarketing or retargeting program.

Target audience

5. Rethink Your Target Audience

Some businesses are going to do better than others during this COVID-19 period so now is the time to rethink your targeting to take advantage of new opportunities that now exist.

Look at what consumers and businesses are now looking for as we are living in heavily disrupted times.

For example, accountants, HR consultants, solicitors and financial planners will all be in high demand.

So will healthcare professionals and those who focus on providing self-improvement, mental health and professional training services.

Home maintenance products, home gyms and trades will all do well as people are confined to their homes.

Entertainment and escapism will be in demand as boredom sets in.

Food, transport, online shopping, delivery services, natural foods and the basics that we all need on a daily basis – these will all do well too.

And of course, marriage counselling services may inadvertently also do well due to the emotional stresses that come with a lockdown!

If you don’t work in these sectors, look at how you can modify your offering to provide relevant services and products to these businesses that will do well in the current market.

Mobile Devices

6. Use Innovative Technology

Many of our old ways of communicating and managing our business operations are now redundant so we have to look for technologies that can help us through this period and beyond.

Look for apps and tools that will help you to communicate and run your business effectively online.

Zoom has taken off in a big way as businesses replace face to face meetings with video conferences and team meetings. Microsoft Teams and Skype provide similar benefits and functionality.

We use Slack for our team meetings and file sharing. Our twice daily catch ups have been amazing for our team morale and productivity!

Our phone diversions are currently being managed by Spoke which allows calls to be transferred to our team members’ mobile phones without any privacy issues. Telcos such as Central Telecoms offers a wide range of other communication options to keep calls flowing with minimal inconvenience to clients.

Online auction software is changing the real estate industry and live streaming is changing the events industry. These industries will never be the same again.

There are so many apps and tools to manage internal and client communications, productivity, project management, marketing, calendar bookings, payments, training, file management and more.

Do some research and find innovative tools that will get you through coronavirus and hopefully help you to be more efficient in the future.


7. Build Your Brand

During busy times, businesses can often fall into the habit of focusing mainly on sales and service delivery, neglecting their brands in the process.

They can start to deliver generic messaging that doesn’t take advantage of their strengths and points of difference.

Or they can deliver mixed messages, promoting their brand as innovative and high end for example, while their visual branding and collateral is dated and unappealing to their audience.

Now is the ideal time to revisit your brand, re-evaluate your positioning and your unique selling proposition to refine and refresh your brand story.

Why does your brand exist? What are your brand values and do you have a purpose beyond simply making profit?

Do you have a core essence to your brand that provides the framework for all your communications? Disney is about Magic, AirBNB is about Belonging and BMW is about Performance. What is the DNA of your brand?

Do you have genuine value propositions that resonate with your target audience and are you effectively and persuasively communicating your point of difference through all your marketing communications?

Use this quieter period to review and refine your brand so that you can emerge from isolation with all your marketing collateral effectively communicating your brand story in terms of messaging, visuals, tools and tactics.

Get your website working

8. Get Your Website Working For You

Online competition is only going to grow through the coronavirus period and beyond, so you need your website to be seen and to be relevant to the search criteria of your ideal prospect.

Check that the platform you are using for your website is SEO friendly without code bloat, errors and omissions.

Make sure your website is easy for the user to navigate with a search-focused main navigation and lots of relevant hot buttons that encourage them on their journey through multiple pages of your site.

Get the content and visuals in line with the information your prospect is looking for and remove all the corporate, self-promotional fluff that the user doesn’t want to read.

And importantly, make sure your website is optimised for the most popular search terms and keywords so that you rank higher in the search engines.

Doing this now will not only help you to become more competitive in a quieter market; it will also position you to rebuild and thrive when the market becomes stronger as SEO programs can take several months to deliver optimum results. The time to start is now!


9. Look After Your Customers

Keep in touch with your existing clients and prospects, even if they have reduced or stopped their spend.

Send them relevant information via EDMs and e-newsletters.

Let them know how you are changing your business to better suit their current needs.

Offer them valuable information that may help them to get through these challenging times without asking for anything in return.

Keep your brand awareness high so that when they are ready to spend again, they will remember that you were there for them during the tough times.

And of course, stay in touch by phone and video calls – make sure you keep your personal connection with your clients and prospects strong and memorable.


10. Be Innovative

Now is the time to think differently about your business.

Can you deliver your products or services in a different way?

Can you market your expertise via videos, blogs, podcasts or LinkedIn articles?

Can you supplement your normal income by creating products that can be sold online?

Can you become a reseller for other products, apps or services relevant to your own product or service range?

Can you repurpose your manufacturing, partner with other companies, create new technologies or service additional sectors to find new opportunities for either the short or the long term?

Now is not the time to just sit and wait. Don’t go into hibernation, waiting for the market to revert to how it was before coronavirus. It may never be the same again.

So be brave, be innovative and make sure that your business is one that takes advantage of the new opportunities that do exist in this strange, new world.


Good luck! Please call us if we can help or if you’d just like a no-cost obligation-free chat.

Important announcement

Hello to our valued clients, colleagues and suppliers.

From all of us at Milestone-Belanova, we sincerely hope you and your families are all healthy and doing well. It is certainly a strange and unpredictable world we are now living in but hopefully we will get back to a safer, more familiar world before too long.

Until then, we have taken the Government’s advice and as from tomorrow, every member of our team will be working from home.

We are fortunate that we have a high level of communications technology in our office which will help us to continue servicing you with minimal interruptions.

Our office hours will continue to be Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm and we commit to being available to assist you during these times.

Due to an error in our telephone system that our provider has not been able to fix, we have been required to set up a new phone number that allows call forwarding. We apologise with this inconvenience but ask that you now call us on 1300 788 572. Our phone lines will then still be answered by our friendly office manager, Janice Wells who will be able to divert your call to the relevant team member.

If you forget our new phone number, you will be able to find it on our email signatures, website (www.milestone-belanova.com.au) and on our telephone answering message.

As we won’t be able to partake in face to face meetings for a while, we have the following ways that you will be able to communicate with our team in addition to normal phone calls and emails:

1. Call a team member direct on Slack – please let us know if you have Slack and we will add you to our network. We will be able to share files via Slack as well as run conference calls.

2. Arrange a Skype meeting – You may find our staff on Skype by searching their email addresses.

3. Arrange a Zoom meeting. We will be able to show you how to screen share on Zoom so that we can discuss briefs or work in progress. Again, you may find our staff on Zoom via their email addresses.

If you have another preference for video conferencing such as Microsoft Teams, you can of course set up the call and we can join in.

There is no doubt that this will be a challenging time for most businesses but with some adaptions and new thinking, we hope we will all get through with as little impact on our businesses and families as possible. If there is anything we can do to assist you, please don’t hesitate to call us.

To help support our clients and all other local businesses, we are offering a complementary strategy meeting with our Director and Marketing Specialist, Barbara Ketley (via video call) to discuss your options and put a plan of attack in place. Please contact us on 1300 788 572 if you would like to arrange a video meeting to help you keep your business afloat during this tough time.

We are all in this together and wish you all the very best of luck in navigating through these difficult times.

Kind regards,

Barbara Ketley  – Director and Marketing Specialist

What is a brand?

The definition of a brand has come a long way from the days when cattle ranchers used ‘branding irons’ to identify which cattle belonged to who. A century and a half later, the definition has become significantly more complex and, unfortunately has therefore become a lot harder to understand!

To address some common misconceptions, a brand is not just your ‘brand name’ and it’s not just your ‘logo’, although both of these attributes contribute toward your brand.

Your brand is a perception; it exists inside someone’s mind. It’s how people perceive your company, products, services and experience, in both a rational and an emotive sense. ‘Branding’ is the process of defining, maintaining, strengthening or changing that perception to positively influence their buying decisions.

So why are brands important? Brands differentiate your offering, build loyalty and improve recall and recognition over your competition’s products. You can see this in the baked beans category, for example where Heinz is by far the best selling baked beans product in the UK (where they sell more baked beans than the rest of the world combined – over 1.5 million cans a day!). However, as far as the product is concerned, it has come in just third in taste testing on multiple occasions (see for example https://www.village-bakery.com/best-canned-baked-beans/) demonstrating the power of a brand over the quality of a product.

Furthermore, when people connect meaningfully with a brand, trust, loyalty and emotive engagement will increase which will build protection from negative influences such as competitive activity, pricing disadvantages and poor media exposure. Take the Samsung Galaxy Note 7 recall in 2016, for example. The high profile event wiped out 98% of the profits in the mobile division and dragged company profits down by 30%. However, it did little to damage Samsung’s brand loyalty. A poll later that year found that Samsung’s customers were still fiercely loyal to the brand with 91% of current Samsung users saying they would be likely to purchase another Samsung smartphone, and 92% of current users saying they would probably buy another Samsung product in general. Despite a disastrous product failure, the company was forgiven by its customers, thanks to the value of its brand.

To successfully build a brand, it must be communicated consistently across all touchpoints a company or product has with its customers. If the brand message and experience are not consistent across all touchpoints and interactions, your unique brand advantage will be diminished. Within your marketing collateral, this means consistent messaging, visual styling, tone of voice and brand personality across your proposals, brochures, website, social media, business stationery, office or shop interior, customer service style, staff uniforms, advertising and even non-marketing communications such as invoicing. Every touchpoint should tell the same story.

A well thought-out brand will effectively portray what your business stands for and what makes it unique and appealing to your customers. It expresses the qualities, strengths and personality of your business and if strategised well, it will appeal directly to your target market, drawing them in like a moth to a flame.

What is involved in developing a successful brand?

The process in creating a powerful brand involves thorough market research to profile your customers, understand their motivations, map their buying journey and substantiate why they should be attracted to your business.

A unique brand essence, or company/product DNA, can then be defined which will provide the framework for all brand communications. This is the emotional heart of your brand, combining rationale and emotive reasons to buy with the clarity of a defined and relatable personality and brand archetype. This is the core upon which your brand purpose, positioning, value proposition and other elements of your brand strategy will be built.

Ultimately, your brand strategy will be translated into brand standards including your logo, tone of voice, brand visuals and other tangible brand elements.

An investment for business growth

The typical mindset many people face when starting up a small to medium business may be to save as many pennies as possible until the profits roll in. This unfortunately means some businesses will miss the window in creating the correct foundation required for a successful and sustainable business. It may be hard to appreciate that part of your marketing budget should put aside for brand development and that taking the leap and hiring a professional to build your brand may in fact prove to be one of your most valuable investments for long term business success.

So how much does it cost to build a unique brand strategy for your business? Well, if you are BHP, the answer would be in the $millions! But for an SME, it is really an affordable proposition that should return the investment many times over in the future. If you’d like a firm quotation and proposal for your business, simply give us a call.



Changes to Mailchimp

For many years, we have advocated Mailchimp to our clients as one of the best value options for managing emarketing programs (amongst a few others we also recommend). With the free version offering a competitively high mailing volume of 2,000 subscribers, great analytics and the opportunity to customise eDMs, it has proven to be one of the best free platforms around.

However, earlier this year Mailchimp made some significant changes to its plans which have impacted both pricing and available functionality. If you are currently on a Mailchimp platform, we don’t necessarily suggest changing to an alternative provider but you should be aware of the following:

1. Every contact in your list now counts towards your contact total – this includes unsubscribes, subscribes and non-subscribes. Free accounts still allow up to 2000 contacts but to keep within this total, you should now go into your mailing lists and clean them up regularly, deleting unsubscribes and non-subscribes so they won’t be added to your total.

2. You now only get one audience (list) with the free plan. If you have maintained different lists for customers v prospects v VIPs, for example, you may now want to look at upgrading to the Essentials Plan from $14.64 a month as this level allows for 3 audiences.

3. Importantly, for most clients who have had an eNewsletter or eDM template designed by us, the free version no longer allows new templates to be custom -coded, leaving you with the only option of basic templates. If you want to take advantage of more interactive features and a better user experience, you will now have to subscribe to the Essentials Plan as a minimum.

4. Multi-step automations are no longer available unless you are on the Standard Plan or above which starts at $21.97 per month.

5. Insights and analytics have been limited to the basic level and don’t include A/B or multivariate testing.

On the positive side, Mailchimp has expanded its services recently to now offer retargeting through Google, Facebook and Instagram, enabling you to integrate your marketing campaigns within one platform. If you haven’t explored the power of retargeting, why not ask us to provide a marketing proposal for you. According to Google, combining retargeting with other advertising programs can increase your conversions by as much as 50%!

Improve your business in 2020

As we race towards the finishing line for 2019, it’s bewildering to realise just how fast the year seems to have gone! For some sectors, it was a slow start with various state and federal elections destabilising market confidence but we have been delighted to see that, for many of our clients, business is now on the rise and they are looking forward to a stronger 2020.

Despite the tough year, it has been a time of growth and improvement for many businesses; for others, it’s been a time of change and a chance to get ready to take advantage of better conditions ahead.

If your business is going through the latter, here are some simple tips for achieving growth even in slow times:

1. Look after your existing customers well – they are invaluable in both good and bad times and very costly to replace.

2. Reduce your risk by diversifying your customer base if you are reliant on too few customers.

3. Be proactive in your marketing – while your competitors are quiet, you have a great opportunity to be heard.

4. Take the time to improve your service and operations so that you are well-positioned to cope with the influx of business when the good times return.

5. Use quiet times to train your staff so that your customer service is a key competitive advantage.

6. Keep staff motivation high – show your staff they are valued as it costs a lot to replace well-trained, quality staff.

7. Keep a tight grasp on your finances – know how you are progressing, protect your cashflow and maybe pay a few extra visits to your accountant.

8. Think innovatively about the products you sell, the services you deliver and future market needs. A quiet period is a chance to think differently about your business and, as long as you research and test well, it can be time to make beneficial changes for a more sustainable future.

We’re very proud of our clients who have done so well against the odds this year – see our story below on how many of our clients who have won much coveted awards, for example! If you are looking to take advantage of improved market conditions in 2020, come and have a chat with our Director, Barbara Ketley. She has worked on growing hundreds of brands across a diverse range of sectors for over 25 years and would be delighted to help you to jump-start your business growth for the new year!

Instagram. A modern marketer’s toolbox


By now we should all be familiar with social media giant, Facebook and you’ve no doubt discovered what a beneficial tool it can be to effectively market your business…but have you familiarised yourself with Instagram for business as yet? If not, you should know this.

Instagram, officially owned by Facebook, is now an extremely popular channel that is one of the best social media platforms for business in 2019. With approximately 9,000,000 monthly users in Australia, it sits behind just behind Facebook and YouTube as Australia’s 3rd most popular platform and can provide some powerful benefits for your business.

Instagram is constantly evolving whilst taking the title as the perfect modern marketer’s business toolbox, with new features being introduced to get the right amount of exposure and interaction with your target market. For example, it now allows you to tell your brand’s story with unique and engaging visual content.

Is Instagram the perfect tool for your business? When you look at the recent 2019 user demographic results, the profile breakdown is as follows:

Who is using Instagram?

Gender: 39% Female and 30% male

Age: 64% 18-29 yrs, 40% 30-49 yrs, 21% 50-64 and 10% 65+yrs

Location: 42% Urban Residents, 34% Suburban Residents and 25% Rural Residents

Income: 42% of people on 30K-40,999K, 30% of people on 50K-$74,999 and 42% of people on 75k+

Once you’ve determined whether Instagram is the right tool to target your ideal demographic, there are other factors to consider. For example, the right hashtags to include, the best day of the week to post and the right time of day to ensure your audience is online to instantly view your content.

When to post is heavily influenced by the habits of your target market and you can discover when they are most active on the platform by utilising the very handy tool, Instagram Analytics. Looking at Instagram Analytics will help you understand how the platform is operating as part of your overall marketing strategy.

If you’re not evaluating your Instagram Analytics on a regular basis, then you could be:

Targeting the wrong audience.

Posting too frequently (or not frequently enough).

Driving irrelevant visitors to your website.

Posting during non-optimal hours of the day or days of the week.

Missing opportunities for brand engagement in your comments or stories.

If this all sounds a little complicated and time consuming the good news is you can always engage a professional social media strategist to help get it right or try utilising an analytics site such as:





With regard to hashtags, we find this is somewhat of a grey area for some of our clients. But to those who choose to avoid them like the plague, we can’t stress enough how beneficial hashtags are to help you widen the spread of your posts. Recent research has found that posts with at least one hashtag average 12.6% more engagement than those without. More specifically, other research has found that the optimum number of hashtags on Instagram is 9 per post but don’t follow this number blindly – some posts will warrant less. The key to Instagram hashtag usage is to include plenty of relevant hashtags that will help your fellow Instagrammers. If you use unrelated hashtags, you are spamming the system and placing yourself in danger of receiving an Instagram ban.

So how do you find out what the best hashtags are to use? Well, firstly you can use Instagram’s search bar (ie the Explore feature). If you select the Tags tab, Instagram will generate a list of hashtags that are associated with that keyword and also show you how popular they are based on the number of posts with those tags. To stand out more, you may also want to consider using hashtags that are more specific to the content you are posting or niche hashtags that are referred to as ‘related’ hashtags on Instagram.

Perhaps also look at what your competitors are using and try to find something different so you’re not competing in the same space. Or look at what the influencers in your industry are using and learn from them – if a hashtag is working for them, it may be worth trialing.

If you need more advice about how to get your head around the forever changing, forever evolving world of social media marketing, please do not hesitate to drop us a line here at Milestone-Belanova.

To engage with us on Instagram and take the opportunity to view our recent projects and news, whilst getting to know us behind the scenes click, on the link below. We look forward to meeting you there!





Welcome to the New Year!

Where did 2018 go? It definitely seemed to speed by and all of a sudden we are into February 2019 with a fresh canvas for another exciting year!

For us, 2018 was a year when we put a lot of focus into training and rewarding our staff to increase engagement and to bring new, talented team members on board, including an office puppy named Archie! We were fortunate to work with a wonderful HR consultant, Jo Hanlon of Mind Your P’s throughout our employee program and were very proud to ultimately win the Employer of Choice Award at the 2018 Central Coast Business Chamber Awards!

This year, our focus is on revitalising our customer service and ensuring all aspects of our business are customer-centric. To help us in this process, we have engaged business consultant Mark Cleary of The Big Paddle. Mark has been contacting a diverse selection of our current clients to confidentially gather feedback on what we are delivering and what our customers really want. Many thanks to our clients who are taking part in this process! If you haven’t been contacted but would like to provide your feedback to us, please let us know. We would welcome all feedback and ideas in our quest to become better at delivering outstanding service to our clients.

If you’ve come back invigorated after the Christmas break and are excited about strengthening and growing your business, we may be able to help! Certainly we’d love the chance to hear your story and offer constructive feedback and ideas on your marketing strategy and implementation. Just let us know if you would like an obligation-free meeting to discuss.

We have been very lucky over the last year to have worked with some exceptional clients on some amazing projects. We have showcased a few of these projects in this newsletter including websites, television commercials, branding and marketing projects. In addition, we have shared important information on changes to WordPress, social media strategies, web and design trends for 2019, useful facts on SEO, a guide to today’s consumer buying process and highlights of Infusionsoft as a powerful CRM.

We hope you find our content both interesting and useful!

Kind regards and best wishes for a hugely successful 2019,

Barbara Ketley and the Milestone-Belanova team.