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Personalize, and be specific!
Whenever, and as often as you can possible work it in, you should use the word ‘you’ in your headline, and throughout your copy. After all, your ad should be directed to ‘one’ person, and the person reading your ad wants to feel that you’re talking to him personally, not everyone who lives on his street.
You can throw the teachings of your English teachers out the window and the rules of ‘third person, singular’ or whatever else tends to inhibit your writing.
Whenever you sit down to write advertising copy intended to pull the orders – sell the product – you should picture yourself in a one-on-one situation and ‘talk’ to your reader just as if you were sitting across from him at your dining room table.
Say what you mean, and sell HIM on the product your offering. Be specific and ask him if these are the things that bother him – are these the things he wants – and he’s the one you want to buy the product.
Lots of ads are beautiful, almost perfectly written and quite convincing – yet they fail to ask for or demand action from the reader. If you want the reader to have your product, then tell him so and that he should send his money now.
Unless you enjoy entertaining your prospects with your beautiful writing skills, always demand that he complete the sale now, by taking action now – by clicking a link, calling a telephone number and ordering.
There are two trains of thought when it comes to SEO.
The first is, content is king. Creating sharable content and building a community is the only organic way to increase your search rankings.
The other is inbound links, or backlinks. Having sites and blogs linking to your own site through blogrolls, referrals, and 3 lists.
Which is right? Neither. The two should go hand-in-hand in your efforts to optimize your site for search. Yes, you need websites linking to your site to catch the attention of Google’s search spiders, but you also need quality content to encourage the people who run other websites to link to yours.
To create quality content, Wikihow recommends that you write for people, not search engines. In other words, take your time and write content that is useful and engaging.
“Your readers will share your work generating additional backlinks, not to mention extra traffic, and search engines will recognize your quality piece because it will flow naturally with not too many keywords,” according to Wikihow.
With quality content in hand you need to spread the word to get those backlinks. To accomplish this, find similar websites and request a link exchange, submit your website to sites such as Reddit, Delicious and Digg, participate in social media to publicize your content (also comment favorably on the websites that you wish to be backlinked to yours) and publish an RSS feed and submit it to aggregators.
Of course, there is more to SEO than content and backlinks.
Mashable recommends the following:
- So you can take additional steps to make your site easily discoverable in search, you need to have a basic understanding of SEO. Check out the highly popular, easy-to-read Beginner’s Guide to SEO from SEOmoz.
- Have your site graded with Hubspot’s free Marketing Grader. The tool analyzes your website and provides actionable insights to improve your site’s web marketing. With results in hand, make whatever tweaks to your website that Marketing Grader suggests, such as meta tags or keywords in your title tags.
- Many content management systems for blogs have SEO plugins. Use them. For example, WordPress has the All in One SEO Pack, a great plug-in for automatically optimizing your blog for SEO.
Wikihow also offers some fine-tuning guidance:
- Complete all image attributes. Pictures dress up your pages but search engines don’t really know how to deal with them unless you complete all the nitty-gritty details like title, caption, alternate text and description. And don’t use this as an opportunity to cram an extra few keywords onto the page as this will likely have a negative impact on your search engine ranking.
- Diversify anchor text links. There needs to be some variations in the text when one creates those blue-highlighted anchor text links.
Take note of word count. Although it’s been a classic rule that “readers online do not read,” it simply doesn’t mean that one has to deprive visitors of good, meaty content. Stick to at least 250 words a page.
And remember that optimizing your site for search isn’t a one-time sprint, but more like a slow-paced moving marathon that is always continuing.
“Search engine marketing is a constant process that requires trial-and-error and self-education,” according to Mashable. “People stay on websites because of great content or great products, but if they can’t find them, it’s essentially useless.”
Joshua is the Digital Strategist at MBA@UNC, the online MBA program at the University of North Carolina’s Kenan-Flagler Business School, and MPA@UNC, the online MPA program at the University of North Carolina’s School of Government. Follow him on Twitter at @joshuavjohn
It’s funny how a text laden-ed front page of a website is said to be a “no no”. The reason for this is that you probably skim website content, you rarely read every word, yet if you came across a blog post that interests you then you are likely to take it all in, even referring to it later.
A great way to make money with your blog is to blog with a product in mind. This kind of blogging is becoming more and more popular.
A word of warning, the blog post should not be a blatant pitch, it must give enormous value too.
This is how it works.
OK, so you want to write a blog post that is built around selling one or more products, this could be an affiliate’s product, your own products or even joint ventures with others.
Whatever your product is, you need to be a bit of a wordsmith if you want to send the right message and make money with your efforts. In other words, you’ll need to learn how to sell in your blog post without the reader ever realising that they are being sold to.
Here are some key pointers.
What is the first thing you want people to do with your blog post?
You want them to read it!
So you need to write a great headline.
Which of these headlines are more powerful?
How to make money with your blog.
10 effective ways to turn your blog into a money making machine.
(A little tip here…people like lists…top 10 tips, 6 best ways, 5 reasons why, you know what I mean.)
The format of any blog post, article or even a book should be….one sentence so compelling that the reader wants to read the next one and so on and so on.
The backbone of the article or blog should be….an article consisting of many variations of the word “you”. You need to focus on the reader, they have to believe that they are going to get something valuable out of reading your blog.
The underlying strength of your article should be….your credibility, why you are the expert. You should try to mention proof of your credibility throughout the article and also in your signature.
Once you have made the reader feel at home and that they are important, you can then move onto your pitch.
Tips like this and more are available in The Blogger’s Bible.
Why not take a look at my Blogger’s Bible which, at the moment, is available for Free from this website?
In The Blogger’s Bible, you’ll find detailed information on promoting your blog.
You will learn how to promote your blog on the internet for free so that you can receive thousands of unique visitors each month, or week!
The Blogger’s Bible will also show you how those visitors who stop by your website can earn you a nice residual income.
1. Put your blog post into a list, like this one.
It keeps it neat and easy to read, (doesn’t look so onerous).
3. Keep the introduction and conclusion short.
4. Don’t try to include too much info, keep the tips clear,
clean and concise and to the point.
5. Keep one post focused on one topic. If you have
several things you want to talk about then try writing
separate posts for each topic.
6. Write with a sincere desire to help your reader.
7. Don’t write an article that is basically just a
sales letter for your company. You can promote yourself,
un-ashamedly, in the signature at the end of the post.
8. When writing a good signature make sure it is good enough
to entice your reader to go to your site or request more
information from you.
9. Don’t forget to mention what you have coming in future posts
to encourage them to subscribe to your blog.
10. Give something away free. In the past I have offered a free
marketing email course. This gave me the opportunity to create a
relationship with my readers.
Surround Yourself with Helpful People
When I was working for an $8 billion publicly traded company as a Director of Information Systems (IS) years ago, I reported to a Vice President of the IS. He was a great guy to work for, but I felt like I wasn’t learning much from him. In addition to that, there was a very slim chance be promoted to the next higher level, let alone to CIO (Chief Information Officer). I knew there must be something I could do and learn regardless of my next corporate career move.
So, I did the unthinkable. I called my boss’s boss, Barbara, the CIO. We met and I expressed that I needed some help. Although, I did not know what I needed help with, I asked Barbara point blank, “Would you be my mentor?” Barbara said, “YES.”
She opened up many doors for me, but not from a promotion stand point. She helped me connect with outside industry mentors and nominated me to be a member of the Society of Information Management (SIM). She also enrolled me in the Regional Leadership Forum (RLF), a 9-month long leadership forum with industry peers. During that 9-month RLF program, I read 35 books and presented as well as facilitated many discussions. Most importantly, I gained peer support as well as great mentors nationwide. The entire experience helped me clarify my goals, and shortly after my graduation from the RLF, I restarted my business.
“Surround yourself with helpful people” is my motto. We can’t do things alone. We need plenty of helpful people to help us along the journey.
I’ve used many coaches, consultants, advisors and mentors throughout my career in corporate America and in my business. Some people who identify themselves as mentors when they are actually a coach, or a consultant who claims to be a coach do often confuse me. I’ve created this “helpful people locator” to help me decide who will be of most help to me at any particular time and place along in my journey.
You’ll see the “Technical skills or Knowledge” on the vertical axis and “Leadership skills or Knowledge” on the horizontal axis.
- Consultant: Someone who has high technical skills or knowledge with low leadership skills or knowledge. They are so technical that you can expect the work they do for you to be delivered in a tactical nature. For example, I have an I.S. consultant working for me today, Akhilesh knows exactly what to do when it comes to our website programming. But he gets direction from me, and provides consulting in a tactical nature.
- Advisor: Someone who has high technical skills or knowledge with high leadership skills or knowledge. They can do work for you as well as provide strategic thinking. For example, I have a CPA firm as an advisor who advises me on any company finance decision. Ed doesn’t get into my detailed accounting, but certainly has provided me great strategic advice over the years in matters such as licensing, pricing structure, etc.
- Coach: Someone who has low technical skills or knowledge and low leadership skills or knowledge. (This is from my personal experience with no reflection regarding how or if the coach has been certified.) A Coach is someone who helps YOU get the answer out of YOU, often tactical in nature. They believe you already have the answers and strive to get them out of you and put them in application. For example, I worked with my marketing coach Ravel for two years. He helped me create a solid branding message, taught me how networking plays a part and showed me how to put together my 1-minute commercial. All the answers are from me, but he was so good at getting them out of me. Today, I work with entirely different marketing coach, who focuses on external communication with proper tension.
- Mentor: Someone who has low technical skills or knowledge and high leadership skills or knowledge. A mentor has “been there and done that” and knows what the path is. Barbara, my CIO example, is a mentor. Today, I have two business owner mentors who have been successful not only in their field, but also successful in the sale of many of their businesses. Our conversation is on a strategic level. Most importantly, my mentors are great connections to other industry top guns.
No matter who you decide to surround yourself with, take some time to determine what you actually need before you decide who to work with. You might want to consider the following:
1. Have one or two mentors any time during your career. They’re your sounding board and your connectors.
2. Mentor one or two people and pay it forward. The more you teach, the more you learn.
3. Work with a coach to help obtain your vision and clarify your goals, but remember they are not your therapists. I agree with a coach’s approach in that you do have all the answers within you. You need a coach to help you sort that through. They’re great for personal development.
Surround yourself with helpful people! Why do it alone?
Chia-Li Chien, CFP®, CRPC, PMP; helps women entrepreneurs to convert their business into meaningful personal wealth. She is the author of Show Me The Money and columnist for WomenEntrepreneur.com & Fox Business online. She is available for consulting, speaking engagements and workshops. She can be reached at http://www.chialichien.com or email@example.com.
How Soccer Relates to Business–Author Linda J Lord “The Pitch”–Virtual Book Tour Starting May 3, 2010
During the month of May, Linda will be interviewed on May 19th at The Business Women – Official Blog.
Linda will be discussing her recently published novel that reaches out to business owners, entrepreneurs, and working women who are looking for practical business strategies.
Her book “The Pitch” explains how soccer has very similar strategies that can be used to be successful in business.
This book provides sound business concepts in a fable format. This engaging story traces the journey of a single mother, whose business is floundering, from the brink of personal and professional disaster through the tumultuous learning curve of self-awareness to a place of success and self-acceptance.
One dollar from the sale of each book goes to the Hemophilia Society of Ontario, South Western Ontario Region.
Leave a comment, Linda will be available to answer questions.
Go to http://virtualbooktour-theyppublishing.blogspot.com/ website to follow Linda’s full tour schedule or visit her website http://www.lindajlord.com/.
There will be an Amazon contest at many of her virtual book tour stops. Visit participating sites to find out more about contests and giveaways!
It is because blog posts provide the opportunity to promote, discuss and persuade in a gentle and informative way.
When people are reading a website they will skip things and will probably not read pages that are text ladened.
Yet, strangely enough, they will read every word of a blog post, so it is better to do your pitch in a blog post than on a website.
Always remember that the blog post must contain something of value, the pitch should be secondary.
It is also much easier to include the keywords you need for search engine optimization, (SEO).
Take a look at your website – of-course you provide information about your business but it is very difficult to incorporate, much needed, effective keywords without making the website unattractive and sometimes unreadable.
The Blog post provides the opportunity to include the right keywords.
So, to really benefit from the SEO potential of a Blog, the keywords, (the words that people will use when they are searching for your product or service), need to be in the title, the headings and throughout the document.
It is also beneficial to have a keyword to an external website that has a relevance to your product or service.
I know that I have often mentioned that capitals and bold text are not a good idea they look like you are shouting at the reader but on this occasion it would not be a bad thing to highlight one or two keywords in your post by capitalization or italics.
One more important note, don’t add too many keywords. This could do the opposite effect and get you penalized by the search engines.
A lot of people ask me to suggest affiliates. They want to know which ones are the most effective at monetising their blog. I suppose it would be safe to say that I have done a hell of a lot of research on this subject as bad choices can make the difference between a profitable blogging business and bad choices can mean no business at all.
It is a difficult one because it all depends on your target audience.
Of-course there are some great generic ones like Chitika which is an online advertising network which works a little like Adsense. For me Chitika far surpasses Adsense because not only can you earn with click throughs you can also earn a residual income for 15 months on your referrals earnings. Read More…
It doesn’t matter what kind of business you have and how benevolent you are, you can give things away for free, you can raise money for great causes, you can hold people’s hands but everyone at sometime needs to make a living.
The baker puts bread on your table, not to feed your family but to feed his own!
I am sure, if you own a bakery or a grocers then online marketing is not so important but if you have a product or service that has a website at it’s heart then you need to know how to drive traffic, create a contact list and to make sales.
Ok, so you have a great website that showcases your products or services or you have signed up for an online, work at home business that has provided you with their propriatory website to promote – what next?
It doesn’t matter what kind of online or offline business you have, if you sell from a website then you need to get it out there to the right target audience.
Not many of us are really clever enough to know, for sure, who will buy from us, I promise you, I have had many surprises! But somehow we need to work out how to get our business in front of buying customers. So a scatter gun approach is not really the way to do it, you need to target the right people.
So how do you recruit people to an online business. How do you get people to come to your website?
Online? Offline? Cold calling? Friends and family?
Let’s look at Friends and Family first.
If you want to lose friends then pitch to them, the same with family members. I don’t know about you but I would hate it if my loved ones avoided me because they felt guilty for not buying into my business! So that is a definite “no no”.
Cold calling? Hey! I’m into this online gig because I want to enjoy it, I want a better quality of life and cold calling just does not do it for me! So, for me, that’s out too.
Offline – now here’s a thing – yes it can work, even for an online business. You could:
1. Get out there to your local business networking events.
2. Build relationships with local business owners to encourage referrals.
3. Take stands at exhibitions.
4. Advertise in the newspapers.
5. Give out flyer’s in shopping malls and markets.
6. Carry business cards for those chance encounters!
Then there’s ONLINE.
Now this is where your marketing can really rock!
Here are my 5 very best online marketing tips.
1. Any good at writing?
You don’t have to be Jeffrey Archer but a good clear blog with all the right keywords can be a fantastic marketing tool.
The article should not be about your business but about something helpful for the reader. Of-course it should be linked to your business, for instance if you are a garden landscaper then an article or blog about growing roses would be good but a blog about baking a chocolate cake may not be.
You need to engage with the reader, they need to see you as a leader and expert.
Once you have constructed your blog or article you then need to add a clear succinct signature at the bottom, this is very important for obvious reasons.
I know what you’re asking….what do I do with my blog once it is finished?
Well if you have a blog section on your website then that is ideal as readers can click to your website to read the blog.
You would open your blog on your website, copy the URL or address and add that link along with a catchy intro like:
An easy way to bake a chocolate cake – if you love chocolate you’ll love this – http://www……
You would add it to places like Facebook, Twitter, Ecademy, LinkedIn etc that’s assuming that you are a member of all these social sites, if not why not???
If you have written your blog on someone else’s website, like Blogger, Ezines or another blogging platform like my site for business women, TheBusinessWoman then you need to make sure that all your website details are in your signature.
I know a lot of people think that Twitter is a waste of time well, I promise you that it is not, if you do it right.
A daily tweet containing great advice to followers who are your target audience can really boost your profile. If you have a good profile then people will see you in a good light and are more likely to buy from you. If you read my blog, How to market on Twitter, you will see how you can make Twitter really work for your business.
3. Facebook Fan Pages.
Create a fan page with the same name as your business then set to work making friends and then inviting them to become fans of your page. Once you have a reasonable amount of members you can create a badge to upload onto your website. This creates a sense of community and will give confidence to your website visitors. Of-course you also have your fans to market to as well.
Join groups and forums to get to know people, (not to pitch to them), once they get to know you they will eventually ask you what you do and then you can get away with a subtle pitch.
5. LinkedIn groups.
Join the groups on LinkedIn, you are allowed upto 50 group memberships. Of-course you need to find groups of people who would be interested in your sector and will be beneficial to you as well. Then once in a group you can upload your articles or blogs to their discussion pages. These are then sent out by the system to the group members in update e-mails. Some of the groups have memberships of thousands of people each so your one article alone can get you enormous exposure.