We have always shared blogging tips that emphasize the quality of the blog posts or any form of content materials being shared online.
But this time, we have decided to come up with a blogging-related article that would tackle one major problem online marketers’ face all the time – coming up with NEW and FRESH content to consistently share.
So the next time you run out of ideas, don’t let frustration set in. Try these tips below:
Relax for a few minutes
You may experience at times that no matter how much you think to be able to come up with something, nothing comes out. When that happens, take a break. Do something that would relax your mind. Read some quote, watch your favorite flick, surf the internet, listen to music. The more relaxed your mind gets, the more creative you become.
If you can’t come with a solid idea in just one sitting, it’s okay. Start small. Write down random thoughts on a piece of paper. In fact, write down everything that crosses your mind. This kind of exercise will jot your brain without overworking it and help you come up with some solid topic ideas to start on.
Have a snack
Sometimes not being able to think clearly is caused by something as simple as a rumbling stomach. Your brain won’t work if your stomach’s busy complaining. If you feel hungry while working at something, eat a light and filling snack – perhaps a bar of chocolate or a slice of cake.
If you’re stuck at a single idea you think is not worth writing, head on outside for a quick jog. Or as an indoor alternative, do some sit-ups or jumping jacks. Exercise releases endorphins that are known to help your brain function better.
Do something that inspires you
Bring out your sketchbook or your crafts materials and start doing something creative that does not involve writing. Exercising one creative part of your brain usually stimulates the ‘writing part'. Before you know it, your writers block will be cured! You'll never know where you will find inspiration.
For online marketers, especially those focusing on Twitter, Hubspot's Social Media Scientist, Dan Zarella, has made life a lot easier for you.
Zarella examined the 20 top most retweeted words in his "Retweet Mapping database". These buzzwords, according to him, will turn your everyday tweets into actionable messages.
you please retweet
please social media
blog how to
free blog post
media check out
help new blog post
With Twitter being a hot social media platform to connect with your audience and share your expertise, we hope you find these top retweeted words helpful as you maximize your reach socially!
Videos are the newest craze in business advertising and PR. Creating a video for your business enables you to showcase your products or services in an easily viewable format. They also will put a face and voice to your business, particularly if you work exclusively online. In addition, studies show that online shoppers who view videos are nearly twice as likely to make a purchase as non-viewers. On Facebook, videos are shared 12 times more than links and text-based posts combined.
While major corporations have the resources to hire outside filmmakers or purchase high-end video and production equipment, most small businesses do not have those kinds of funds. There are, however, many ways you can create good video content on a low budget. You just have to know how to start! We've provided some basic guidelines to assist you in your creation of a video for your business.
1. Get inspiration!
Look online for other business's videos. Depending on what companies you are looking at, some videos may include professional touches that are outside your budget, but that doesn't mean you can't get inspired from them! You will pick up tips on what looks compelling in a video, style choices, sound and lighting, camera angles, and more. When you can, integrate the elements you like into your plan for your business's video.
2. Get organized!
Before you start any business video, sit down and iron out all the details to the plan. Shooting a video does not just involve setting up a handheld video camera and having someone talk into it in a spare room of the office.
This organization includes, but is not limited to:
3. Prioritize your shoot!
Don't schedule your video shoot on the same day as something else exciting or out-of-the-ordinary, like a conference or a luncheon. The logic here is that shooting during this event will create an exciting and interesting end video. The truth? Shooting a professional marketing or business video requires a controlled, calm environment as well as your full attention. Dedicate the entire day to the production of your video; you will thank yourself later.
4. Promote your video!
In addition to linking your video to all your social media sites and your business's blog, post it on both YouTube and Vimeo. Carefully choose the title, description, tags, category and keywords that properly describe your business. Consider what your customers may type if they were looking for a product or service like yours and tailor your content to this. Also, choose a thumbnail that best represents your video and will encourage visitors to click. On YouTube, fill out the location of your business/video on the map. This can help users locate your business quickly and easily.
Making a video for your business is a fantastic way to gain attention and traffic. The reward for your business will be great and the cost minimal if you do your research right. Also, once you start making videos, they will become easier and easier! Start small and work your way up. Online video works!
What have your experiences been with making video content for your business? Is there anything you've learned on the way that you wish you knew in the beginning? Let us know in the comment section below; we'd love to hear your thoughts!
As an online entrepreneur it is very important that you are always up to date with the ever changing online trends. You must always have an idea of what’s working now, what’s not, and what’s going to work in the foreseeable future.
Since the digital world is where you and your business thrive, you need to keep tabs of the people who have made it big in the online world – the mavens of online business, the Seth Godins and the Guy Kawasakis. So to help you, we have compiled a list of the top business blogs that you should start following (if you haven’t already!).
8. The Suitcase Entrepreneur
Natalie Sisson shares with you the ins and outs of having an online business that can give you back your time and lots of profits, too! The best thing about it is that she walks the talk. She started as a regular office-based entrepreneurial career and eventually worked her way into having freedom in business and adventure in life.
7. Small Business Trends
Whether you’re a startup online entrepreneur or the owner of a brick-and-mortar business, Anita Campbell’s blog will provide you practical and timely business advice. If you want fresh and crisp content related to small business, you should start subscribing to this website now.
6. Smart Passive Income
You want to know how online reputation building and customer engagement is done? Start reading Patt Flynn’s blog. Read the first few posts and then the latest ones. You’ll be amazed of how he was able to build his loyal network of entrepreneur fans and increase his monthly income from $7000 to $55,000!
5. Social Triggers
On his blog, Derek Halpern will tell you straight how you can effectively use the power of social media in catapulting your business into today’s overcrowded digital market. You’ll get tips and advice on how to become a more convincing marketer and salesman.
4. Chris Brogan’s Blog
“You want to grow your business? It’s free!” That’s the tagline you’ll see on Chris Brogan’s opt-in box. He has a very good grasp of social media and online marketing. So, if you want to grow your business, opt-in to his newsletter.
3. Tim Ferris’ Blog
I know you’ve already read his 4-hour Work Week book? You haven’t yet? Well, it’s time you do. The book’s a must-read for every entrepreneur out there. His blog, too.
2. How to Change the World
“A practical blog for impractical people”. Guy doesn’t blog much, but every blog update he does has something new to offer to his readership. If you want to get more golden marketing and business tips from Guy Kawasaki, start subscribing to his email list.
1. Seth Godin
Seth Godin writes crisp, short, interesting and always useful tips. His evergreen marketing advice and tips should not be missed by both online and traditional entrepreneurs alike. His books are very insightful, always a must-read.
Over to you..
So, what blog are you already following? What your favorite business blog? Any marketing or business blog you want to add on the list? Please share them on the comments section below.
The digital marketplace is becoming more competitive than ever. Online businesses are fighting to get the attention of their prospective customers. Millions of pitches – in the form of emails, tweets, posts, pins, videos, audios – are being sent out every minute. For an average consumer, most of these are just noises.
If you have an online business and you don’t make your brand stand out, it will be buried deep down the avalanche of noisy pitches. Following are 8 tips to help your business get heard and noticed:
1. Be different. Take time to brainstorm new strategies and campaigns that will make your brand stand out. A calculated risk is always welcome. Keep testing, keep learning. The digital world is ever-changing and you must learn how to keep up with these changes.
2. Earn your customer’s trust by listening to them. You can’t sell anything without earning the trust of your customers first. And trust doesn't happen just because you shove marketing pitches down your prospects’ throats every single day. Trust is built over time; it is something you must work for, something you must earn.
For your customers to trust your brand, you must listen to them first. Listen, listen more and listen even more. Listen to the sentiments of your customers, their needs and wants. And of course, find ways on how your business or brand can address those needs.
3. Find a partner. Find someone who can help you build your business. Although you can wear many hats, this is not smart. Doing several things on your own will only slow you down and may even render you ineffective. Find someone that can help you make effective decisions for your brand or take on other more mundane tasks. This can be a team member, an assistant, a business partner.
4. Be bigger than yourself. Don’t focus on personal goals. Look at the bigger picture and make sure your goals coincide with the goals of your brand and business. Be true to the mission of your brand.
5. Create and curate. When it comes to promoting your brand online, you don’t have to keep creating new marketing pieces every time. You can curate interesting and helpful posts and then share them to your audience. Take note, the keywords here are “interesting” and “helpful”.
6. Collaborate and network. To even increase brand awareness, start collaborating with businesses related to your brand. Start joining networking events. Not only will this increase the exposure of your brand, this can also help you in terms of finding potential investors or business partners.
7. Be on multiple channels. One of the most effective ways of getting your business noticed is by making sure that you have establish your brand’s presence on platforms most frequented by your target audience. For your marketing effort to be effective, you have to be at the right place, connecting with the right audience.
8. Ask your audience. Your business wouldn't thrive without the active participation of your target market. So always ask them. And listen to what they have to say.
Over to you..
How about you, anything you want to add? How do you ensure your customers notice your brand? Please share your thoughts and comments below.
Since email clients have been improving their spam-filtering systems, spammers are moving to platforms still vulnerable to spamming – social media. In a study conducted by Nextgate, spam increased by 355% during the first two quarters of 2013.
Why Social Media Has Been Targeted
Aside from the fact that social media spammers can go undetected, social spam has far more extensive reach. The reach of email spams is dependent on the size of the email list and the number of allowable sent messages allowed by the hosting company. Social spams, on the other hand, can potentially reach millions of users in just one sitting.
Online marketers must start tailoring their campaigns so that it takes into consideration the presence of spams. Following are some ways on how to proactively deal with social media spams:
1. Take time to weed out spams. Here’s one of the many ways a spam gets spread out: If one of your friends or followers accidentally clicked a spam link, the spammy message might get sent to your inbox. And if you then open the message and click the link, it will then be sent to your own network of followers and friends and may annoy them in the process. Some may even block or remove your from their list.
Clean your inbox every day and be wary of messages with link. Videos that appear on news feeds are also a very common source of spams. Don’t click the link if you don’t trust the source.
2. Only add real people. Don’t add or follow social media accounts that only share sales pitches and links every time. Also, don’t hire a company to increase your likes/followers from 100 to 1000 in just a week! More often than not, these companies will just use dummy accounts to boost the likes and follows of your social media accounts. Quality trumps quantity.
3. Evaluate the size of your social media network. Take a realistic view of the size of your audience when evaluating the effectiveness of your social media campaigns. Remember that 10,000 followers is different from 10,000 active followers. Some accounts may already be inactive and some are definitely spams or dummy accounts.
Use tools that can help you determine the how many active followers you really have.
Kevin Kelly says that all you really need are 1000 true fans to really get your message across and be successful online. This basically means that you should focus on community building and sharing great contents that people will rave about. As long as you have your 1000 true fans who will spread your message on your behalf, you’re good.
Over to you..
What do you think about social media spams? Have you started weeding them out? Share your thoughts and comments below.
We all know that reading is an excellent way to find advice and inspiration for our business lives. But what knowledge should you acquire in order to help you take your business (or startup idea) to the next level? The following 5 books are written by fellow women entrepreneurs and provide what we here at MACs Women think is excellent advice for any businesswoman!
1. Lean In: Women, Work, and the Will to Lead by Sheryl Sandberg
This book is all about what it takes to lead and how the business world needs more women leaders. As the COO of Facebook, Sandberg certainly knows what she’s writing about. Though this book wasn’t written specifically for entrepreneurs, it is certainly a fascinating and inspiring read.
2. The Boss of You: Everything a Woman Needs to Start, Run, and Maintain Her Own Business by Emira Mears and Lauren Bacon
Mears and Bacon’s book is the perfect read for a first-time woman entrepreneur who wants her business to start small. The Boss of You takes a humble approach to the business world by not focusing only on big profits and massive growth. The authors started out small with their business, and now they are passing their knowledge to other women like themselves.
3. Ladies Who Launch: Embracing Entrepreneurship and Creativity as a Lifestyle by Victoria Colligan, Beth Schoenfeld, and Amy Swift
These three authors share what it’s like to be a woman on the path to entrepreneurship. It’s an inspiring book that details what it’s like to be a woman starting her own business. The book is structured in steps, which are practical and easy-to-follow. Since publishing Ladies Who Launch, each author has gone her own way in the business world, each with much success.
3. Shark Tales: How I Turned $1000 into a Billion Dollar Business by Barbara Corcoran
Shark Tales is the inspiring true story of Corcoran’s slow start as a waitress into a real estate tycoon. She did this all on a $1000 loan from her boyfriend. She tells her story in a straightforward manner, and the book is filled with practical advice about how any woman can forge her own path to success.
4. The Art of War for Women: Sun Tzu’s Ancient Strategies and Wisdom for Winning at Work by Chin-ning Chu
This book is Chu’s adaptation to the famous masterpiece The Art of War. It shows modern businesswomen how to use Sun Tzu’s philosophy to win in every aspect of their life. Chu emphasizes that every good strategy begins with an understanding of the people and the world surrounding a particular situation--including our own weaknesses, strengths, fears and goals. This book is a unique and refreshing look at the business world.
5. The Girl’s Guide to Building a Million-Dollar Business by Susan Wilson Solovic
Solovic is the head of Small Business Television, so she knows her information. She offers real life advice: take emotions out of the workplace and make decisions based on what is best for your business. And she assures her readers that creating a million dollar business can be done without destroying your personal and professional lives.
We hope these books will help you on your own path to entrepreneurial success. Every woman entrepreneur should read them and be inspired by the success of these great women!
What books have inspired your entrepreneurial decisions or your life in general? Let us know in the comment section below!
Building your email list is very crucial to expanding your market reach. But if you have been doing the campaign for quite a time without much results, then the problem may not be the your overall proposition.
Do you offer any incentive to your target audience to give you their contact details?
If the answer is no, it’s time to dramatically enhance your sign-up conversion rates with one of the easiest and highly effective tactic: offering free stuff.
People love free stuff. It is human nature. Offer them something with a perceive value like an ebook or a free report, and they are more likely to join your community and hand you over their contact details.
Here are the four easy steps for increasing your sign-up rates using smart email incentive:
1. Utilize existing content
If you have a blog, then you will have no problem getting great content you can use for your email incentive. You don’t have to write new articles, which can be very time-consuming. All you need to do is put together your best written materials on your blog, bundle them up and turn them into one cohesive ebook.
If you don’t have a blog, but you have written articles for business websites, you can apply the same method mentioned. Or if you are good at creating videos, you can create a 5-7 minute video that offers insider tips that can help your audience.
2. Make it look attractive
When you offer a gift to someone you care about, you want your gift to look very attractive and appealing to the recipient. It is the same way with offering freebies to prospects.
Give your ebook an eye-catching cover design. Check the ebook carefully or the free report offer and make sure there are no grammatical errors. Format them carefully for easy reading complete with sub-titles, bullet points and images.
3. Use a call to action trigger
Tell your readers what to do next after receiving the free offer. You can ask them to click on a link that will lead them to learn more about your business offers, or what they can benefit from getting your product or service.
4. Make it easier for people
Keep it simple when offering a freebie. Potential clients may get discourage from finishing the sign-up process if they find it difficult. If you are offering a free ebook, you can save the file in pdf form that is easier to download and read.
Make it easier for them as much as possible.
Try them today as you will be amazed at how a simple gift can make a big difference to your email marketing efforts. Don’t forget to monitor the results of the sign-up campaign and see if your free offer is really attracting people to join your community.
Over to you..
If you have other effective tips to add on how to improve your email marketing efforts, please leave them in the comment section below.
Self-confidence is a key to growing your business and achieving your goals. But many entrepreneurs, if not all, suffer from the lack of it at some point of their career, especially when they’re dealing with a difficult market.
This is the number one reason why we need time to synergize, step away from the arena for a little bit to get some perspectives, and go back to the drawing board.
Here are smart steps to develop a more confident entrepreneur in you:
1. Surround yourself with people who believe in you
Build a team around you of positive role models, a team of can-do people with can-do attitudes about the things that matter to you and your business.
Having people around you who are pessimistic and negative can never be a good thing ever if you are taking steps to make your dreams come true. The negative vibes and energy they bring can be draining and exhausting to your positive entrepreneurial spirit.
2. Take the focus off of yourself
Focus on other people. Ask them questions and learn more about them, especially your prospective business partners and investors.
Focusing off of yourself and instead concentrating on others can be liberating and allows you to be more confident whatever situation you go into.
3. Stay confident even if you are not
Appearance is very important especially in crucial business meetings with potential clients or investors. Put on your best business suit or something that you are most comfortable with and act self-assured and positive.
This can have a strong impact on the people you are meeting with especially in the first few minutes of your interaction with them.
4. Monitor your self-talk
Be always mindful of how you talk to yourself. There are certain critical situations when you might talk yourself into something, instead of talking yourself out of it, and vice versa.
Take everything into careful consideration and mind your self-talk.
5. Keep taking concrete action
The number one thing that separates successful business owners from the rest of the pack is that they take action. Entrepreneurs like you and me deal with a dose of anxiety every day about moving forward in spite of where we are along our entrepreneurial path.
It is something what we all experience. And this is exactly the best time to develop more self-confidence and keep your faith in your ability to attain your growth potential and goals.
As we have mentioned previously, many small businesses manage remote employees from all over the country. One way to effectively manage and motivate these remote employees is to have frequent conference calls to connect with faraway individuals. If they are handled well, conference calls can enhance productivity, build employee and customer relationships, improve project management, grow sales and consumer loyalty, and reduce overall costs to your company.
Despite all these obvious benefits, some conference calls turn out to be infuriating and embarrassing technological blunders. Here are some tips to streamline the conference calls your business has and make them easier for everyone involved.
1. Create and provide an agenda.
Creating and then circulating an agenda for the conference call beforehand will help format and structure the meeting. People like to know what is planned ahead of time, so they will appreciate that you've laid the plan for the conference call out for them. This is particularly helpful if you want to have an open discussion with your employees. Posing certain talking points or questions in your agenda will help the participants plan what they want to say or add to the conversation.
2. Lead the call.
Efficient leadership of the conference call will ensure that it occurs smoothly. Introduce yourself, or, if the call is regularly scheduled, jump right into a summary of what you want to discuss during this call. Remember, though: establishing leadership with your voice means you need to communicate clearly and be careful with your word choice, to ensure everyone understands you.
3. Involve everyone.
If this is your first conference call with a certain set of people, introduce yourself and then have everyone else introduce themselves. If all the individuals know each other already, pose a simple question such as "How was everyone's weekend?" This will break the ice and engage everyone involved in the call.
4. Share the floor.
Though a leader should be established, as stated above, it is not necessary for the leader to hog the floor throughout the entire call. Unless you are presenting something, you should listen respectively and don't interrupt. Give everyone a chance to share their perspective.
5. Avoid distractions and don't multitask.
Make sure everyone on the call finds a quiet place with little feedback noise. Try to avoid shuffling your papers or tapping your pen. In addition, turn off your electronic devices and resist the urge to check your email while someone else is talking. Anything that would be off-limits in a face-to-face meeting should be off-limits in a conference call.
6. Provide time for questions.
About 5 minutes before the end of the meeting, let everyone know that they can ask questions if they have any. This allows all the participants of the conference call to clarify parts of the discussion or ask the leader a question.
7. End the call effectively.
Thank everyone for their participation, and let them know when you are hanging up from the call. Also, if you were using a recording device or summary, let them know if they will be sent a copy or transcript. You should also provide the time and date for the next meeting, if necessary.
Like any meeting, conference calls need to be run well so participants stay engaged and the meeting remains an effective use of everyone’s time. Conference calls can be useful and productive for many small or online businesses. To have an effective conference call, remember these 7 tips and you’ll find them to be a useful method for meeting with others.
What are your tips for leading a conference call? What is your experience with their success? Post your thoughts in the comment section below!