Archives for April 2009

Guest post: 5 Ways To Use Your Web site as a Marketing Tool

Today’s post comes from Jason Shindler, owner of Curvine Web
Solutions

Almost
every consultant has a Web site. The question I'm asked often is how do you
actually make money from your Web site. I've prepared five tips to help you
turn your Web site into a money making machine.

1.
Invest in a quality Web site.
A lot of consultants and other single person
business owners try to do it themselves or save money by bartering or finding
someone to do it for free. When you are just one person, you need all of the
backup you can get to spread the word about your business. Spend the money and
hire a professional to design and implement your Web site. 

2.
Promote your Web site.
Once you have this great Web site, you need to work to
get it in front of the right people. This does not happen automatically. One of
many ways to do this is to find places online where your potential clients
congregate and begin by announcing yourself and asking them for feedback on
your Web site. For example, let's say you are a speaker who specializes in HR
topics. Find a group on LinkedIn that HR professionals join. Post a message
pointing them to your Web site and ask them for feedback. You'll get two things
from this — real world feedback on how to make it better and a way to get your
potential clients to read more about you using your Web site. 

3.
Evaluate.
Once you have had your Web site up for some period of time, you will
want to evaluate to see if it working the way you expected. Here are some
questions of the many you will want to answer: Which pages attract the most
visitors? Which pages are users leaving you site from? Which marketing
techniques attract the users that spend the most time on your site? You can use
Google Analytics – http://www.google.com/analytics,
a free program available from Google. GA will help you answer these questions
and many more.

4.
Make Changes.
Use all of the knowledge you have gained to try out some new
techniques on your Web site. If a bunch of people are leaving your site on one
page, make an educated guess about why they are leaving. Try varying the text
or pictures on that page and see if there is an impact. Try adding more
content. The key is to try something!

5.
Repeat.
A lot of people think that you put a Web site online and it makes
millions of dollars. You must continue to work at this for it to be successful.
A Web site is like a business card. It is no good until it is in the hands of a
potential client.

Jason
Shindler
is the owner of Curvine Web Solutions, a Web site development firm
located in Bellvue, WA. You can read more about Curvine at http://www.curvine.com, or visit their blog
at http://blog.curvine.com/wordpress/.

 

A hidden reason you are likely not generating online revenues

“I’m not making any money!” comes the frustrated battle cry.
“It’s easy for you, but I have not figured out how to make this thing work!”

Recently, lots of people who have been trying to make money online
are likely chanting these statements. Yet others are chanting, “Great times!
Great times! Great times!”

Which begs the question, “Why are some people making money online
while others are not?”

There are so many factors involved as to why one does and
one does not make money by way of the Internet that to pinpoint it in this
article may not be feasible.

However, it’s likely the people who are currently making
money are utilizing a number of different avenues in order to generate revenue.
They are not relying on one way and one way only.

Equally, they are not selling only high priced programs that
only a small percentage of their customers need, want or are willing to pay
for.

Daily, there are those who are making a small fortune from selling
very low priced offers such as $7 reports, eBooks, MP3 files, etc. In these
fluctuating economic times they are providing content driven resources that
virtually anyone is willing and capable of paying for.

[Read more…]

If you pay attention to trends your business will thrive

If you are using the Internet to market your business you absolutely need to pay attention to what is going on.

One of the most effective ways to address client issues, concerns and needs is to understand trends that impact them. Knowing what trends are occurring is also a great way to determine what products and services you should be developing.

Many people guess at what is going on. Smart entrepreneurs pay attention to trends. My colleague, Denise Wakeman, posted an excellent resource on her blog for those who want to stay in the loop with trends.

Great job Denise.

 

Are You Guilty of Annoying Others via Social Networks?

The saga of
my recent Facebook ousting continues. Not only have I not been able to get back
on FB, I still have no idea as to why I got “excommunicated” in the first
place.

However, I
have found the experience to be one of introspection. As a matter of fact, many
people, myself included, are evaluating our past, current and future
involvement on social networks in general.

Take Twitter.
With the ability to automate the Direct Message feature, the number of emails clogging
inboxes everywhere with useless messages has gotten way out of control. For
those who don’t know about this feature, basically you set it up so when
someone follows you an automatic welcome message goes to the person who just
requested the follow.

Although
this may seem like a great idea in theory, in reality it is a pain in the
backside for most of us. Here’s my experience; daily I was getting lots of auto
DMs from folks I don’t know who immediately tried to sell me something, encourage
me to look at a site with useless information, or what not.

Admittedly,
I had my Twitter account set up so the minute you followed me, you
automatically got a DM with something like, “Thanks for the follow. I do all I
can to tweet useful information.”

Although a
nice welcome, how many people actually read the message compared to how many
get very annoyed with yet another blanket message arriving in their inbox?

Think about
how many of these messages you get from your Twitter connections. How many of
the automated ones do you actually read? Initially it may be something you get
excited about, but in short order it gets to be very annoying and a huge timewaster;
especially if you try to read every single message. Once you realize that it is
automated, the frustration mounts.

After realizing how annoyed I was with all the
junk mail (and knowing I was likely annoying others), I disengaged the DM
feature. Now when someone gets a DM from me it is manually done which means I
really wanted to send you a message of value.

I also
disengaged the automatic DMs I got from others. Daily I was getting dozens,
even hundreds of useless messages that I never read anyway. Now I know that
when I get a DM it is the real deal and the sender actually wanted to send me a
message of value.
Yes, dear readers, many folks are taking a good look at the process and becoming
more selective about who we follow, befriend, tweet, twoot, hoot, capture or
whatever the latest and greatest term happens to be for any specific social
network communication we are involved in.

The whole
idea of social networks is to create value in the relationships we develop. At
least that’s what we would love to think.

Although
automation is great on the one hand, on the other hand it is something that has
impersonalized how we communicate and has become a huge annoyance more times
than not.

Let’s bring
back the days we actually welcome messages and announcements rather than
cringing when we see our inbox cluttered with useless garbage.

As a sidenote, to see what others are thinking about my Facebook ousting, go to FB and find the group, Let Kathleen Gage back on Facebook. I do hope you will take the time to join.

Skill set or mindset; which is most important for success?

Why is it that the current recession has not seemed to
impact some people yet others will continually tell you how tough times are. Why
is it during these “downturn times” many entrepreneurs are watching their
revenues go up while others are chanting, “Business is slow, business is slow”?

Like me, many of my colleagues continue to grow in
spite of what we would be led to believe by the media. Although my business is
Internet based as is the case with many people I know, the growth is not
limited to online entrepreneurs. There are numerous examples of success within
industries such as fine art, healing, publishing, and more.

Why is this? What is the magic ingredient for success
for those of us who are living a completely different experience during these
most amazing times than others who don’t consider these amazing times?

It actually boils down to one simple thing; mindset. It
is in maintaining the mindset that regardless of what the outward appearances
are there is ample opportunity at every turn.

[Read more…]

Get free access to Little Voice Mastery

Not long ago I told you about a book called, Little Voice Mastery. The book was so popular it sold out in no time at all. Demand depleted Amazon’s inventory and exceeded back order quotas.  Archaic systems prevented many of you from purchasing your copy and redeeming your free gifts. 

The good news is you don’t have to wait any longer.  The better news is…now you can get the book for free.  That’s right…for FREE!

Blair’s goal was to achieve #1 best-seller status for one reason and one reason only—to build a community—because he’s so convinced that winning the “Little Voice” war  between your ears to move forward in life and business is THE message for 2009 and beyond. 

To thank you for your support and patience, Blair is offering the book for free online, now through April 17, 2009.  AND, you can still get 31 FREE bonus gifts valued at more than $7,000. 

Just click on the link below and follow the 2 easy steps provided:  www.littlevoicemastery.com/booktour

Once you register to read “Little Voice” Mastery for Free, you can return to the online book easily.  Each time you go back to BlairSinger.com to read, there’s no need to fill out another thing. 

From the homepage, just click on the “Free Book Online” button and the book will automatically appear for your viewing, now through April 17th, 2009. 

Are you one of the lucky ones who already purchased the book?
If so, you win too.  You’ll get a FREE, two-month membership to Blair’s exclusive “Little Voice” Mastery Club.  And, you don’t have to do a thing.  You’re automatically enrolled as of today and will be hearing from Blair shortly.  To learn more about membership, visit www.BlairSinger.com

Still want a hard copy of the book? (it is a nice book for your bedside table) Simply go to Amazon.com and place your order.  The book will be sent to you as inventory becomes available.  To be eligible for the 31 FREE bonus offers, you still must click on the above link and register to read the book online.

Thank you again for your support and patience.

Kathleen Gage

Confessions of a Facebook Reject!

Yes, it’s
true…I’ve joined the ranks of Facebook rejects. Amazingly, I still don’t know
why this happened. There could be any number of reasons from too many friends,
too many messages, too many invitations or being perceived as a spammer.

 Regardless
of the reason, the fact remains; I have to wait for the blessings from the Facebook Powers
that Be
to have my member in good standing status reinstated.

Now mind
you, this is not an isolated situation. Countless others have gone through a
similar situation; patiently awaiting (well maybe not patiently) the Facebook
Heaven’s to open up and shine a light on them. Some gave up waiting and simply
put up a different page and profile.

Simple
solution for some, not so simple for others. Depending on the complexity and
reason for one’s involvement with Facebook determines what the best solution
is.

Since this
incident began I have given a lot of thought to what Social Networking really
means. In the truest sense it is about building a community; one in which
people want to be a part of our network.

[Read more…]

I was banned from Facebook…but why?

What a day it has been. I found out last evening I have been
banned from Facebook. I was not given a specific reason for being ousted and given the boot.

I learned of the situation when I attempted to log in to my
account. I got a message telling me my account had been disabled.

Thinking it must be a mistake I once again attempted the log
in. No luck. Amazingly, I was soon to discover this situation is more common
than most people realize.

First thing this morning, I sent a message to my opt-in
subscribers letting them know I was no longer on Facebook. Amazingly, having
one’s account disabled by Facebook is apparently very, very common.

Within minutes I received messages from several people who
had had this experience or know someone who has gone through this. By day’s end
I received hundreds of messages from people empathizing with the situation.

The great majority of folks had no clue why they got the “big
boot” from the powers that be at Facebook. They could merely speculate.

Deciding to do a bit of research to find out how to get back
up on Facebook, I came across a couple of excellent blog postings.

These are well worth reading.

13 Reasons Your Facebook Account Will be Disabled

and

Banned from Facebook

I will keep blogging about this and welcome you sharing your
own experience if you, or someone you know, has gone through this
.

Survey indicates over 79.3% of respondents make less than $100 a month online


In
a recent survey conducted by the Street Smarts Marketer, Kathleen Gage, nearly 80%
of those who responded indicated they make less than $100 online. Most have
been attempting to make money via the Internet for under 2 – 3 years.

The
greatest challenges are not enough time to learn what to do, misinformation,
too many choices, building a responsive opt in subscriber list and finding
clients who will pay for products and services.

Addressing
the needs of the marketing, Kathleen Gage aka The Street Smarts Marketer, is
offering a FREE teleclass on April 16, 2009 at 9 – 10 a.m. PST. The Truth About
Making Money with the Internet is perfect for anyone who is currently making
less than $100 per month online or anyone who might be making more but is
hungry for even more revenue from their online efforts.

During
this fast-paced session you will learn you need to know to turn your website
into Customer Magnet and your own personal ATM; how to build a highly
responsive opt in subscriber list that can generate thousands of dollars and
how to gain massive name recognition within a specific
target market so you become the expert customers and
clients are eager to work with and willing to pay for your expertise. You will
also learn what the
3 most common blunders newbies make that can cost you
thousands of dollars and make you nothing.

     To
learn more and register go to http://www.streetsmartsmarketing.com/fastrack_freecall.htm
Registration required.

 

Is Twitter useful or a waste of time for authors? Judge for yourself

Lately there's been lots of conversations, postings in forums and in social networks about whether or not Social Marketing is useful or a complete waste of time for authors.

As with any form of marketing you have to decide what is most beneficial to overall goals.

The fact is, Social Marketing works for some and fails miserably for others. It is not a one size fits all process.

I happen to be one it works for, but am very clear that there are only so many I should be involved with and only for a specified amount of time. Otherwise, I find myself going down the deep, dark rabbit hole of never ending “shiny objects”.

Track results
I have tracked business back to my involvement with Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. Granted, much of the business has been for my training courses, so perhaps my input does not apply to someone who strictly wants to promote a book.

However, when I track 30 – 40% of business back to my Social Marketing/Network involvement, I'm sold.

[Read more…]