Use a Blog To Generate Leads Part -3

How to Drive Traffic Using a Blog

Once your blog is in place, the next step is on the face of it, simple: drive traffic to your blog so you can then drive the traffic to your website. When people arrive at your blog, they are likely to be highly targeted leads. When they get to your website, they are often many times more likely to buy than they would have been had they not visited your blog. This, of course, only happens if you can drive traffic to your blog. There are some important ways to increase traffic to your blog and as a result, get traffic to your website where you can do the selling or promotion.

Search Engine Optimization

You must give some thought to search engine optimization for all parts of your blog. This need not be time consuming, difficult to achieve or something which must be researched extensively to get it right. As with any other website, a blog must have the most appropriate keywords placed throughout. This will enable search engines to find the site and rank it appropriately.

Keywords are those those interested in your topic are most likely to type into a search engine which in turn will point them to your website or blog. These words most accurately describe your website’s topic. To determine the words which are most appropriate you can use a free keyword research tool. These are available throughout the web, including at Google’s website and WordTracker.com.

Type a few words associated with your website. In our earlier example of bakery products, you may have keywords such as baking utensils, flour, flour improver, yeast, and so on. The tools will provide words which people most often type into a search engine when they are looking for this information. It is vital to have appropriate keywords throughout the website as this helps Google and other search engines find the website and to rank it well.

How to Use Keywords

Once you have determined your list of keywords, use them. Some ways in which keywords can be included in a blog to attract the attention of search engines are:

  • Use them in each post in your blog. Sprinkle the keywords throughout your text but do not use too many. Try to keep keywords under 2 or 3 percent of any post and try to ensure they are incorporated in such a way as to make sense
  • Use a keyword in the title of each blog post: this is vital to good search engine ranking!
  • Incorporate a keyword in the first 90 characters of each blog post
  • Use keywords in the “tags” and “keyword” functions of the blog. These are often asked for when you are posting the blog
  • Use keywords in your tags, when creating pages in your website, or in the blog’s set up
  • Pick two to four keywords to use per blog post. Too many keywords can make a post sound strange and limit your ability to communicate with your audience

In addition to these items, be aware of other aspects of search engine optimization. For example, search engines prefer to see short paragraphs. It is also best to include at least one set of bullet points in your post, even if it just lists a few items at a time.

Email Marketing Etiquette

Follow This Email Marketing Etiquette to Get Your Emails Delivered and Read

Email marketing can be a very effective way of bringing new customers into your sales funnel. But due to the widespread use of viruses and malware, most people are cautious about opening an email that comes from a source they don’t recognize, that is strangely written, or appears to have come from a non-English speaker.

You can reassure your prospective customers that the emails you send are safe and reliable by following a few simple email marketing etiquette rules:

  1. Do not make a sensation of your subject

The usual setting for Gmail, Yahoo, AOL, etc., will show who is the sender and the subject. Somtimes, the first few words of the email text itself will appear on the user’s email queue.

That makes the subject the first important element of your email. If it is exaggerated and makes extraordinary claims, or is otherwise sensational, there is a good chance that the email will be sent directly to the “Spam” folder or deleted by the user without being read.

The aim is to get the reader to open the email, so the subject must provide a reason for them to do so. Try to capture their imagination and engage their interest, but do not “go over the top”. Avoid using exclamation points/marks – especially multiple exclamation points/marks – as well as ALL CAPS and crazy colors because this will most likely tag your email as spam.

  1. Use the person’s name, if you know it

The greeting is the first thing the reader sees when they open the email. If you know the user’s name because you know them personally, they are already on your list use your autoresponder to insert their first name in the greeting, such as “Dear Jo” or “Dear Emily.”

Email tends to be less formal than traditional letter-writing, so in most cases using the person’s first name is perfectly acceptable. Using the person’s last name can often seem off-putting, such as “Dear Mr. Bloggs” or “Dear Ms. Smith.”

  1. Get to the Point

Emails are less formal than traditional letters and because people get so many emails every day, the person receiving your email probably has not time to give it much time, at least intially, therefore it is critically important to get to the point of the email immediately, starting with the first sentence.

It is necessary to give the reader a reason to keep reading. Do not waffle and waste time by beating around the bush or trying to build to the main point slowly. You have only a few moments to maintain the reader’s attention, so make the most of it.

  1. Signing Off

The sign-off in an email is usually rather different from that used in a traditional letter. It is not usual to include a formal “ Yours Sincerely” or “Yours Failfully.”

It is perfectly acceptable to with just your name. Or you could use an informal phrase such “Best Regards” or “All the Best”.

Follow these general email etiquette protocols to increase the chances the person receiving your email will open it and read it. Ensure the content of your email pushes the person to the action you want them to perform, such as clicking on a link included in the body of your email.

Innovative Promotional Tools -3

Innovative Promotional Tools

Podcasting the Power of Audio and Video

A series of audios or videos, normally devoted to a certain topic is known as a Podcast. These can be created using the audio and video tools included with most modern computers, laptops, tablets and even smartphones and can be distributed free on YouTube, iTunes and other free distribution networks.

Podcasts can also be sent to your subscriber list or links to your podcasts posted on a web page or blog.

In the same way as blogs, podcasts provide an effective way to target people who have an interest in a particular niche subject. Therefore they can be an effective way to promote your website. Som

Videos
Powerful Videos

e podcasts can be highly elaborate — including professional-quality editing, musical scores and other production values – however, most are simply people talking into a microphone, smartphone or video camera about a topic that interests them.

 

Unlike blogs, podcasts give you the opportunity to speak directly to your listeners or viewers. This can make it easier to engage them emotionally and show your personality. This can be an effective way of branding your website. Podcasts can be played back later by users on portable viewing or listening devices.

During the early years of the internet, audio podcasts were the podcasting method of choice, but now that video playback capabilities are universal, video podcasts or videos have become the medium of choice.

Every Home Entrepeneur Should Know – Part 6

It’s a home business, but that doesn’t mean it can’t be a big business.

Most people who start a home business are looking for an extra few dollars or pounds per month, $300 to $500 or £250 to £450. It is perfectly possible with the right amount of effort to increase that to an extra $50,000 or £40,000 which has the potential to do amazing things for you and your family.

Once the basic fundamentals of a new home business are understood and once there has been some success it becomes easier to see that the sky is the limit. In time you could be making much more money than you ever thought possible. There are many people who are making more than $1,000,000 a year. It might seem hard to believe but just because it is hard to believe does not mean that it is not true.

So, do you really want to struggle all your life? Why do we settle for mediocrity? It could be that we are unsure of ourselves, stuck in a rut, scared, lack confidence, tried and failed and tried and failed, what will my family? We care too much about what other people say, think and do!

It is possible so get out there and do it. To use an old Yorkshire expression, “Get stuck in” and do it.

Every Home Entrepeneur Should Know – Part 5

Technology has changed everything

Twenty or so years ago a lot of business was done face to face. You had to get out and meet people, write letters, make phone calls, send products by post and so on.

The internet changed everything. It is not necessary to meet people face to face anymore, you can talk using on various messenger services, use email etc. You can upload a video in seconds, so people can see you or your product or both. Emails can have links to websites, videos and contact information. Auto responders can make you look like a large company and nobody will know how big your business really is because anybody anywhere can have a fantastic website.

When I started my original business more than 25 years ago my phone bill was enormous, today I can make all the calls I need for less than $20 per month. Conference calling and webcasts can be used to present business to hundreds of people at a time.

This is the online age and you should make use of the technology available in your home business. Do not make the mistake of buying all sorts of expensive gadgets when you start a business, it really is not necessary. Even if money is short, basic technology will allow your home business to operate and look like a very big business. Just as a matter of interest, I have had my current cell phone for nearly 5 years. It works fine, I can make calls and it wakes me up in the morning. Who could ask for more?

Do not become too preoccupied with technology. You can use it to improve your image and productivity if you know what you are doing. A basic computer or laptop, internet access, an email account, maybe a printer and some hosting for your website are the basic tools of the trade. If you need help with email or setting up a website, learn how to do it yourself. There is an amazing array of information at your fingertips. Just go and find it.

Every Home Entrepeneur Should Know – Part 4

Who You are Involved With is More Important Than the Business You are In

Most people have no idea how to operate a business of any kind not just a home business. As children we are told to go to school, pass exams and get a good… JOB! That is exactly the path most of us start on, get a job, work hard, work long hours and try to get a promotion so we can work more hours and we hope make more money.

We do that for 10, 20 or 30 years and then realise that we are never going to get ahead. That is when the idea that our own business could change our life starts to dawn. We have learned to be model employees and most of us have done all our lives.

Leadership is absolutely vital. If you can find someone who has run a home business successfully and you have a chance to work with them, seize the chance with both hands. Become comfortable with them before you get started.

What should you look for? Look for somebody who knows what they are doing. When you ask questions are they comfortable or uncomfortable? Do they have a system you can plug in to and have immediate success?

One of the reasons many people fail in home businesses is that they do not understand the importance of finding the right person with whom to work. They should not blame anyone else for their failures, but if they had associated themselves with people who really knew what they were doing and who would give them guidance the results may have been very different.

Maybe they would have failed anyway, but there is little doubt that working with successful people will reduce the learning curve and save a lot of time and money. Only you can ensure your own success, but to find the right person or persons with whom to work and listening to them, gives an enormous advantage over most people trying to run their home business.

Every Home Entrepeneur Should Know – Part 3

You Must be Disciplined to Achieve Success

Probably the biggest adjustment most of us need to make, is to be disciplined in our home business. You will need to decide whether to go out to lunch, watch a movie on TV, etc. etc., or get down to work. In a traditional work environment, there is usually a supervisor of one kind or another to keep things moving along. People often fail in a home business because there is nobody looking over their shoulder to see that they do what they need to do.

Most people who start a home business have never owned a business and must learn to be disciplined. There will be times when something did not work as you had hoped. It could then cause you to mope around and fail to do anything else the rest of the day. If you maintain that attitude, then nothing will get done and the business will fail.

Set business hours. There will be exceptions of course, but ask friends and family to respect your business hours. This can provide an important step to success. It is also a good idea to have a permanent work space. The ability to shut the door and eliminate distractions can help you get the work done.

This is difficult for some people but children can learn that when Mum or Dad is in this room with the door shut they are working. Children will respect your space and time if you ask them to. Many successful Mums and Dads work at home with children about the place. Children will appreciate knowing why you are not available at certain times.

When you promise to call somebody back at a certain time or to meet a client, you must find the time.

Self-discipline can be difficult with all the distractions which can occur in the home and life in general but it is an absolute requirement if you are to become successful.

Every Home Entrepreneur Should Know – Part 2

Success doesn’t happen without work

In a traditional business, you have to open the business every day. If you have a job you have to appear in the office or workshop if you want to be paid. When starting a home business you cannot simply sign up and expect the money to start being deposited in your bank account. There’s work to be done.

I have often been asked, “Is it hard to become successful in a home business?” Compared with giving all the best years of your life to an employer and missing special occasions and realising that life is nearly over. Also realising the in your later years you will not have enough money to do the things you want to. Compared with all that, no it really is not all that hard. Even if you have a home business where you do all the work, it is a lot better than working for an employer.

The wealthiest people in the world became wealthy by owning businesses. The businesses which create great wealth are out in front of a trend and the business owner is paid based on the efforts of thousands of people.

It is common to work very hard with little success in the first year. The second year will often show signs that success is on the way. Many people fail to realise that during the first 12 months, skills are acquired and confidence starts to grow when success starts to happen.

So, how much work is necessary in the first two years? “How long is a piece of string?” It takes as much as it takes. How much depends on many factors. How badly do you want it? How fast do you want to achieve success? Experience suggests that a minimum of 7 to 10 hours a week, consistently for at least two years.

Success does not happen without work and is not limited to working at your business. You should be committed to improving your skills. Read at least 10 pages from a great book every day. Books such as “Think and Grow Rich” will change the way you think and when you change the way you think you will change your life.

If you expect success without work from a home business it is as if you expected a pay cheque from a job you never started. It just doesn’t make sense.

Every Home Entrepreneur Should Know – Part 1

I was chatting to someone at a presentation the other day and we were swapping experiences. We both wished that help and advice had been available from someone who had already “done it” when we were starting out. We both had had failures and at some stage we had both had serious doubts whether we could ever make a success of a home business.

Neither of us gave up and were able to achieve some success. We were discussing some of the key concepts and ideas we had learned and which were key to our success.

Success doesn’t happen overnight

People often believe that they will become rich within a few months of starting their home business and that success should happen within weeks or days.

We both had heard many stories of people who had started out on this journey but had given up after a few weeks or months. The usual reason seems to be that the promises made by the sales pitch when they bought or subscribed to a program suggested that profits and wealth would be quick and without the need for any real effort. There are many “get rich quick” schemes out there and there maybe one or two which can provide the results promised but most are either a scam or omit to mention that considerable effort and much more investment is required.

Both of us admitted that we were frustrated so many times in the first year of our home business that quitting seemed to be the sensible option. After all, these things don’t work. Who do you think you are? Why don’t you just get a job like everybody else? These thoughts and many like them nearly kept us from success.

What if it took two to four years to become successful in a home business? What if you could make $100,000 without a boss and a job to go to? What if you could actually be at home for your family?

Most people who start home businesses quit in their first 90 days and go back to their old frustrating lives. Many people are barely getting by and are only really existing. They are going from day to day without much hope of a better life. Benjamin Franklin said, “most people die at 18, we just don’t bury them until they turn 65.”

Separate Work and Private Life

How To Separate Work From Private Life With A Work From Home Business

I speak from many years’ experience when I say that it can be difficult to combine a home life with work when working from home. It can cause considerablHow To Separate Work From Private Life With A Work From Home Business
I speak from many years’ experience when I say that it can be difficult to combine a home life with work when working from home. It can cause considerable stress and pressure on both elements if care is not taken to divide your time and physical location within the home. Working from a desk in the corner of a bedroom and having haphazard working hours will not work for the majority of couples or families. Here are some simple basic ideas and guidelines based on my own experience which will help anyone operating a work from home business.

Organise work at home time and maintain a work routine

This sounds boring I know, and it is probably not what you expected from your own work from home business but this is another vital element of being successful. It is not necessary to stick to regular 9 to 5 hours or even be fully consistent with your work hours, day to day. However, working from home MUST have benefits otherwise why bother. So you can go off and take a walk, take a day off and go to the races, BUT this flexibility MUST be contained within some sort of regular work time framework where the lost time is made up at the weekends or over a few evenings. I am a night owl and often work until the early hours of the morning and sometimes all night. Often I will not start work until 2 or 3 in the afternoon, but I still actually work 50 to 60 hours week because I enjoy it.

Exploit the work from home benefits                                                                                                           

There are times when the ability to mix work and home life can be beneficial to all. Do not be afraid to adapt or engineer your work to fit in with family life and vice versa. There will be times when this degree of flexibility can be extremely beneficial and at these times working from home will seem so worthwhile. An example could be that you have a meeting in a town you do not usually visit, so why not take your partner for shopping or a show and make a day of it. The hours can always be made up later. It is also possible to take a lap-top and mobile phone on holiday so you can have more family holidays throughout the whole year rather than just the usual once in the summer. A couple of hours a day or one or two days a week of work can provide many benefits which far outweigh the sacrifices in my opinion.