10 New Year’s Resolutions for Your Online Business

At the beginning of a new year we tend to contemplate our lives and try to find a way to improve our situation. We set goals and make a promise to ourselves to achieve these goals.

The same should be done with our business. We need to take some time to look over the last year to see how we can improve our business performance. What goals can we set for our business that will result in growth and improved results?

Here are some New Year’s resolution ideas for your online business growth and success.

1. Refine Your Social Media – Social media is a very important marketing tactic for today’s online business but it can be very time consuming. You need to set a schedule for your social media participation. Use tools like Hootsuite, Buffer and TweetDeck. They can help you free up time that is needed for other tasks. Allow so much time per day for your social media activity. These sites can become addictive and can cause us to neglect other areas of our marketing and business management.

2. Learn New Skills – The many areas and facets of owning and running an online business can be very overwhelming. The techniques, tools and formats are constantly evolving. We need to always be learning and never settle into a routine with our online business. There are tons of resources online that can help you keep up with the ever-changing internet business world. HubSpot Academy is a great place to start. You can also try Moz for search engine optimization, LearnVest to help you manage your business finds and countless quality blogs to help teach you the newest and most productive marketing trends.

3. Get a Grip on Your Finances – If you do your own money management and record keeping for your business, be sure to analyze and plan accordingly. There are some great software programs to help you keep meticulous records of your business funds. A good example would be Quickbooks or Quicken. You need to know where your funds are going and if you should keep them going in that direction. Go over your advertising budget. Are you getting the results needed? Should you go down other avenues with your advertising budget? What are your regular expenses and are all of these expenses necessary or productive to your business? You need to go over all these questions and more to see if you are delegating your funds for maximum results.

4. Analyze Your Marketing Tactics – As above with your finances, you need to analyze all aspects of your marketing plan. Are your methods yielding the results you expected or needed? What tactics are working and which ones are not? Some techniques might need to be upgraded or even terminated.

5. Revitalize Your Business Plan – With all the new trends and innovations you might need to update your business plan. Go over the plan in detail and reconnect with your goals and aspirations.

6. Commit to Superior Customer Service – Customers are the life blood of a business. You cannot survive without them so why would you neglect them. Make it a priority to streamline your customer service and give your customer’s the utmost attention and care. Focus on their needs and providing the solutions to their problems. It is a sad fact that customer service is dying. Let’s bring it back to life!

7. Diagnose and Resolve Website Problems – Go over your website from a visitor or customer’s point of view. Clean it up, tweak the landing pages or ordering process, or upgrade your call to action. Find any obstructions and take care of them. Make your website the best it can be.

8. Increase Productivity – Many of us deal with poor productivity or procrastination. These are real problems. Study your work schedule and methods. What changes can you make to increase your productivity? Can you delegate? Can you use programs or tools to get more results in less time? Can you hire help? Do what you can to work smarter, not harder!

9. Expand Your Networking – Join some new groups or business associations. Find new ways to expand your network and meet new business associates or potential customers. Does your community have any groups you can join? Get involved with your community, give back to your community, be it online or offline.

10. Reignite Your Passion – Do you remember the passion and excitement you felt when you first started your online business? Along the lines, your passion might be dwindling but you can get it back. Go back to the beginning. Write down why you started your business. Why did you choose the business you have? What has this business done for you? Dig down and remember the reasons for all you have done. Take a break and let yourself become reenergized. Don’t let your business takeover every part of your life. Your business should be a part of you but not the “whole” you. Learn some new things and feel that old excitement come back to life.

Taking all the above steps will help you and your business become alive again. As with personal relationships, your relationship with your business can become old and stale. Don’ allow this to happen.

The business world as is our personal world is always changing and evolving. Keeping up with these changes takes determination and persistence. But you can set those goals and attain them. Make that resolution and commit to keeping it. You and your business will be better for it.

About the Author:
Terri Seymour has almost 20 years of internet marketing experience and has helped many people start their own business. Now is the time to get started with your own exciting resell ebook business. Visit now to get three free gifts including The Big Book of Social Media Tips. http://www.ebooks.seymourproducts.com

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10 New Tactics to Electrify Your Content Marketing

Header photo credit by: 10ch: https://www.flickr.com/photos/10ch/3347658610

Content marketing involves the creating and sharing of relevant and useful content such as articles, videos, infographics and more for the purpose of gaining customers and making sales.

Content marketing has been around for a number of years and like all aspects of internet marketing, it is forever changing and evolving. Keeping up with these changes is crucial for your content marketing campaign. However, one thing that does not change is that “Content is King”.

Below are some new ideas for increasing the productivity of your content marketing efforts:

1. Engagement

Content marketing is no longer just submitting articles to some article directories. It has evolved into a much more detailed and powerful tool. You want to engage people, get a buzz going about your content. Be sure to participate with your readers to keep the interaction going. Show a real interest in your readers’ questions, comments or feedback. Providing useful relevant content is one sure way to create interest and involvement.

2. Upcycle Old Content

If you have some old content that has done well for you in the past, make it happen again. Revive that old content by updating the facts, adding visuals, making it appropriate for now. You have a new audience now with new information to present so upcycling can produce results.

3. Identify with Readers

When creating your content, be sure to put yourself in your readers’ place. Become one of your readers and identify with them on what information they need, how to present it and how you would interact with it. Read your content as if you were a visitor to your site and see how you would react to it. If you find your content informative and helpful, chances are your readers will too. Do not hold yourself above your readers because they will sense this and find other content providers.

4. Visual Matters

Visuals have quickly become a crucial part of content marketing. Our brains react to and process visual stimulation much more than mere text so using effective visuals is critical. There are many places to get free stock photos but you may want to rise above that. Find quality photos or create your own. Infographics and videos are also a very effective way to grab your readers and increase the chances of turning them into customers. People are more likely to watch a short video or scan an infographic then read a text-only article.

5. Use a CMS (Content Management System)

A CMS is a computer application that helps you create, edit, publish, and organize your content. Using such an application will increase your workflow and allow you to better manage your content for more successful marketing efforts. Examples of such tools are My Content Management System Plugin from WordPress, MojoPortal, MediaCore for videos and podcasts and many, many more.

6. Storytelling

Many companies will use storytelling as an effective means of drawing people in. Stories invoke emotions and people are very often led by their emotions. Make your stories real or realistic. The more people can identify with the story the better the outcome. Be sure the story is of value to your readers. Teach a lesson, provide helpful insight or provide some other information to the reader. A story without a purpose could miss the mark.

7. Take Advantage of Technology

As with a CMS, you need to take advantage of all the technology and tools available to you today. Do not shy away from it all. Technology can help you increase your productivity as well as your success.

8. Cross Promote Your Content

When presenting your content, add relevant links to some of your other content when the opportunity arises. Let people know you have much more information available to them then the post they are reading now. Share your content and links to other content with your social media followers and friends. Encourage them to share the content as well.

9. Multiple Sources

Provide numbers, statistics, and other pertinent data when applicable. There are many sources available for you to obtain information so do not be afraid to take advantage. Always give credit when necessary. Use the news, forums, social groups, and other outlets. Be informed and give your audience the information they want and need.

10. Take It to the Limit

Push the limits, be bold, stretch the boundaries. There are so many possibilities with content marketing now as opposed to a decade ago. Be creative, use your imagination and make your content the best it can be. No matter what you do, you cannot be all things to all people. So, go for it!

About the Author:
Terri Seymour has almost 20 years of internet marketing experience and has helped many people start their own business. Now is the time to get started with your own exciting resell ebook business. Visit now to get three free gifts including The Big Book of Social Media Tips. http://www.ebooks.seymourproducts.com

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The Top 10 Don’ts of Digital Marketing

The Top 10 Don’ts of Digital Marketing
©Terri Seymour

Digital marketing is the method of marketing in which we use various electronic devices such as computers, smartphones, tablets, etc. It also entails the usage of software programs, apps and technological platforms such as email, websites, social media, etc. The world of digital marketing is a vast one in which we can easily get lost.

Because of all the advances and changes in technology, it can be hard to keep up on all the latest trends and methods encompassed by digital marketing. Digital marketing strategies include visual marketing, mobile marketing, and online marketing techniques of various kinds so it can all get very confusing and overwhelming.

We not only need to know what to do in the digital marketing world, we have to know what not to do. Below is a list of ten of the don’ts to hopefully help you trek through the massive digital marketing universe.

1. Closing Your Eyes on Mobile Marketing

– The number of people who spend more time on the web with mobile devices is growing at a astounding rate. If you own an online business, you can no longer resist mobile devices as part of your digital marketing arsenal. The first step would be to make your website mobile device friendly. Many site builder programs such as WordPress have plugins and automatic features to do that for you. You can also add a line of code to your site that will format your site to the device being used. Be sure to try your website on your mobile devices to find out exactly how people are seeing it. Go through the mobile shopping experience yourself so you have a full understanding of what you need to do.

2. Too Much Social Media

– Social media is so much a part of the internet these days it is impossible to expect to build a presence on all of the social sites. You need to pick 2 or 3 of the top sites and start building your brand and setting up your social presence. The most used social sites as of now are Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Pinterest. I get most of my social traffic from Facebook and Pinterest. Next in line is Google+, Tumblr and Instagram. If you can understand your target market you can become a part of the social sites in which they would most likely participate.

3. Information Overload

– The digital marketing world is so vast we can easily become lost in the information. I, as well as many others, get caught in the trap of spending too much time gathering information from countless sources on various aspects of building an online business. We need to narrow our focus and learn only what we need to learn to successfully build our business. Find a few good sources for this information and stick with them to learn the ins and outs.

4. Not Having a User-Friendly Website

– Many of us are tempted to create the biggest, brightest, flashiest website possible but this is a big mistake. You want your site design to be simple, easy to navigate and very user-friendly. Add only what is needed to inform your customers. You do want to add some extra content to provide information to your visitors but make sure it directly pertains to what your site is about. Do not clutter up your site with countless ads, irrelevant information or extra steps to get to your call to action. Fancy features and flashy extras will just confuse your customer and possibly drive them to another site.

5. Not Keeping Up with SEO Changes

– SEO is very pertinent to your website but the rules and regulations are always changing. Find a good source of SEO information and follow it regularly to keep up with the changes so you can make any necessary revisions to your business website.

6. Not Utilizing Visual Marketing

– By using visual marketing, you could increase your conversion rate by as much as 86%. This is a phenomenal statistic. Place a video on your landing and/or homepage. Strategically place quality graphics in your blog posts and content. Use visuals as much as possible in your social media marketing. Create and use your own infographics for your blog and social media. There are free tools for making infographics. Use a compelling photo or graphic in your articles. It could mean the difference between your article being read or rejected. Look over articles with photos. Does the photo pull you into the article and make you want to read it or does it leave you flat. Take note of the type of image used and what emotion or action it brings out in you. Placing a well-made video on your homepage or landing page will make a substantial difference as well. People will get the message much quicker than by reading and could be the deciding factor as to whether they stay or go. Be entertaining in the video but be sure to deliver your message. Your image and voice will also help your potential customer bond with you. You also want to get started in a fairly new visual marketing technique called meme marketing. This combines humor and real life situations with amusing and/or heartwarming images.

7. Not Testing and Tracking

– Take advantage of Google’s free tools to study your stats and track your visitors. Google Analytics can help you tweak your site to its performance peak. Test ads, web pages, article resource boxes, etc. Find out what brings the best results and most response and stick with it.

8. Not Establishing the Relationship

– Doing business with people digitally is much different than being able to talk with them face to face. It is harder for people to trust a webpage than an actual person so be sure to do all you can to build that relationship of trust and respect. Answer all email inquiries quickly and appropriately. Be reliable – if you say you are going to do something, be sure to do it. Be consistent – if you are sending out a weekly newsletter do not get lax and start missing weeks. Update your blog and product information regularly. Do not let your site go stale. Be consistent in your social media. Respond to all questions and comments in a timely manner. Let people know you are available for them and can be trusted.

9. Focusing too Much on Traffic and Not Enough on Conversions

– Traffic is the lifeblood of an online business but you also need to focus on quality and targeted traffic. Getting 1000 visitors to your site doesn’t do much good if they are not interested in what you offer. Participate in groups and forums where people who are interested in your services might be. If you offer B2B products and services, join groups and forums of home business owners. We all want more traffic but we need to aim for the traffic to whom we can actually sell.

10. Charging Blindly Into the Marketing Abyss

– Starting an online business and charging headfirst into the digital marketing world is not a good idea. You need to do some planning ahead and research what you are getting into. Know who your customers will be and where to find them. Make sure you are offering a sellable product or service. Be somewhat prepared for your dive into the digital marketing world.

These mistakes are very common but need to be addressed. If you are attempting to build an online business you need to be informed and constantly be adapting and learning. Digital marketing has come a long way since the early 90s and we need to grow and develop with it. It will be overwhelming at times but you can work to overcome and build a successful online business.

About the Author:
Terri Seymour has almost 20 years of internet marketing experience and has helped many people start their own business. Visit her site for free articles, resources, information, resell ebook business opportunity and more. Get three free gifts including The Big Book of Social Media Tips. http://www.SeymourProducts.com

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Build Your Business with a Free Tutorial

Build Your Business with a Free Tutorial

©Terri Seymour

People love to get free information so using a free tutorial to share your knowledge is a great way to promote yourself and your business. By doing this, you will be establishing yourself as an expert and building your reputation. Then when people need products and/or services, you will be the one they trust and believe.

Divide your tutorial into lessons, one for each day of the tutorial or ecourse. Once you get your lessons written up you want to set them up individually on an autoresponder. There are many autoresponders available for free and for a fee. Some hosts may have autoresponders available as well. WordPress also has autoresponder plugins.

Let’s say you own a home décor and furniture website store. You could set up an ecourse on how to successfully paint a piece of furniture. Your lessons would be something like this:

  • Lesson 1: Choosing the Right Paint
  • Lesson 2: Preparing the Piece to Be Painted
  • Lesson 3: Painting the Piece
  • Lesson 4: Maintaining the Finished Look

After your lessons are completed, you can set them up to go out each day in a row or separate them by a day or two. It would depend on how many lessons you have and how long you want the tutorial to last.

Separating the information into lessons works better than sending all the info in one mailing because it keeps your name and business fresh in the mind of the potential customer.

When writing your lessons, sprinkle in information about your business and what you offer but try to make it fit into the tutorial so it doesn’t appear too. Offer special discounts for signing up for your ecourse/tutorial.

Be sure to place your contact email in each and every lesson and let the reader know you are readily available if they have any questions or comments.

Another good idea is to have a preceding thank you note with an introduction of yourself and your business along with a summary of the tutorial. This would precede the first lesson. And then once the course is finished you would have another thank you going out encouraging them to visit your site for much more information and to contact you if they have any questions.

You could also let them know about your special deal or discount they receive for taking the course. Be sure to add your social media links so they can easily follow you.

Make them fun as well by adding trivia or little games along with the lesson. Keeping people interested can sometimes take work but it is well worth the time and effort.

If you have any other tutorials, list them as well and be sure to ask them to sign up for your mailing list. These details will go a long way in building the foundation and relationship needed to gain the customer’s trust and patronage.

Once your tutorial is complete you want to start promoting it so people can start signing up.

Add it to your email and networking group signatures:

FREE 4-day tutorial on painting furniture

http://whateveryoururliswouldgohere

Promote it on your social media pages and promote it often.

Offer it to your newsletter subscribers and post it on your website/blog.

Advertise it with ad swaps.

Put it on your business card and/or flyers.

Integrate it into your resource box when guest posting or submitting content.

Tutorials can be educational and fun so use them to your advantage and let them help increase your sales and build your business.

About the Author:
Terri Seymour has almost 20 years of internet marketing experience and has helped many people start their own business. Visit her site for free articles, resources, information, resell ebook business opportunity and more. Get three free gifts including The Big Book of Social Media Tips. http://www.SeymourProducts.com

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