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SEO – Getting Backlinks to Your Site

Search Engine Marketing, Search Engine Optimisation 17/12/2012

Once you’ve figured out how to properly choose profitable keywords and optimize your website by inserting these keywords at several important places inside the web document, the next thing you want to focus your efforts on is to start building links to your website. More links you build back to your website, the better your website will rank on major search engines, especially in Google, Yahoo, and Bing.

SEO – Getting Backlinks to Your Site

While there are many ways to build links back to your website, in this article, however, I’ll show you few strategies you could use to leave your anchor links with your keyword on powerful website that usually get thousands of visits on a regular basis.

1. Bookmarking Your Site

Bookmarking is an important aspect of link building, and usually my favorite method to build back links to my site. To start with, you can visit SocialMarker that will help you add your website – content, images, and other documents – to more than a dozen different social bookmarking services.

To bookmark on these social sites, you’ll require creating an account for each of these social bookmarking services. Although this method might seem a little bit of tedious, once you’ve created account at each of these sites, you’re done. Meaning you don’t have to create another account again unless for other reasons – you want to bookmark few of your other websites under another account name.

2. Submit Your Site’s Details

Once you’ve set up your accounts and submitted your website on them, you’ll have a chance to enter the details of your website – your website title, anchor link, a brief description of your site, and finally your keywords.

For title, don’t forget to use your main keyword in it. Make it human readable and entice people to click through it by choosing enticing headlines. For links again, use the keyword you want to target for. For keyword, use both primary and secondary keywords you want.

Now submit your site as the SocialMarker service will guide you through setting up an account on various social bookmarking sites and suggest any changes or additions necessary.

3. Leave Comments on Blogs

Next, we’ll go back to Google and find few blogs that are relevant to our keywords by entering the keyword followed by the word “blog”. For example, if you’re targeting for “Youth tennis bats”, then you would search for “Youth tennis bats + blog”.

Once search engines list all relevant blogs on its front page, simply visit each blog and leave comments. Before you leave comments, use the search box or click on the ‘relevant posts’ to find the most relevant blog post for your keywords.

Once you’re ready to comment, you’ll see several fields on the comment section of the blog – name, email, and description fields. The name field always gets linked, so it would make sense to include your primary keyword here. Go on and enter website link in the URL, and email on the Email fields as they’re usually required fields.

While commenting, it’s imperative that you leave some valuable information on the blog. Please don’t spam as they’ll not only look bad, but you’ll end up getting your comments turned down anyway. So read the blog post before leaving a useful and interesting comment.

Continue repeating this method to every other website that you come across on the Google search lists.

4. Forum Posting

Another way to build links back to your website is to find forums relevant to your topic. Again just like blog commenting, go to Google and search using the primary keyword with a word “forum”. From the search result page, visit each forum that pops up and find a relevant thread to leave a reply. Don’t just leave reply under irrelevant topics.

Once you’ve found the thread, go ahead and leave a useful reply that will lead people to your website.

Many forums require you to register before you can leave a reply. During registration, most of them also allow you to enter your website link.

Consider these important points while leaving a reply on forums.

  1. Most forums let you create your own signature. Signature is a place where you enter your keyword as an anchor text and they basically appear at the bottom of your each forum post.
  2. Several other forums allow you to use hyperlinks on the thread itself. In your comment, use your primary keyword as hyperlink to create backlinks to your website. Remember, you’ll be using this as an anchor text, instead of a raw URL. Another credit for you keyword!

Continue posting replies and thread on other forums from the Google search results. Remember to always post helpful and interesting topics.

Summary of SEO – Getting Links to Your Site

After you’ve chosen profitable keywords and optimized your website, you’ll want to expend your effort on building links back to your site. You can submit your website on social bookmarking services by creating account on each of them, for once. Next, to build more backlinks to your site, you can visit blogs and forums and build anchor links with your primary key to make it more worthy. Finally, you’ll leave insightful and useful comments or threads relevant to the topics on these blogs and forums.

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5 Secrets to Approve Your Comments on Blogs Quickly!

Content Marketing 17/12/2012

Beginners leave comments, but they skip these 5 secrets while leaving comments on blogs that could sky-rocket their chances of getting their comments approved faster and easily from blog owners.

Often, few simple steps could get them banned forever as didn’t pay any attention to follow instruction, although that might always be the case.

For example, they might commit several blunders, like being overly professional, leaving signature after comments, responding without adequate information, and doing other crazy stuffs like bolding and highlighting text with colors just to make it more attractive but not giving though on adding values.

As a result, when these types of comments come under the radar of the blog owner’s or website crew, they’ll not only frown, but also block your IP address to prevent you from further posting comments as they think you’re one of those crazy spammers who are only after money.

5 Secrets to Approve Your Comments on Blogs Quickly!

While you might get around these roadblocks with few small blogs, getting approved on high authority and well-established blogs might be an uphill battle for you, unless you do something about it.

Don’t frown as help is at hand. We’ve done the dirty job for you, figuring out 5 important secrets to consider before posting comments on other blogs to build backlinks to your site. Backlinks are a one-way links that readers click to visit your site through several ways – blog comments, forum posts, social bookmarks among others.

1. Being a Promotional Robot

Well, it’s okay to make your comment slightly formal to get more attention and sound serious, but often times these types of comments backfire on you. Over-professionalism or over-promotional comments might seem the way to go, but if there’s no human feel to it and no emotions attached to what you’re saying, then you’ll appear just like every other promotional robots cramming the internet, isn’t it?

Make your comments helpful and personal as possible. People often relate to what other people are going through. So go out there and share your experience! Be creative and unique while leaving comments.

2. Leaving Signature after Comments

There’s a bad tendency to leave signature in blog comments, often appearing as a promotional wizard. Just like spam links inside comments, Internet marketer or IM often stuff promotional links in signature, instead of using it to create a genuine backlink to their site.

Leaving comments is a two-way business. First you want to appear as genuine as possible, and then second you want to get approval for your comments … on high authority blogs.

My advice would be to use signature field to put a URL link back to your website, not cram it with promotional links.

3. Responding Without Adequate Information

Leaving irrelevant information is one thing, but leaving incorrect information whose source you cannot confirm also negatively impacts your reputation as an Internet Marketer or Website owner. If you can’t confirm on the source, find another blog posts and leave correct information. Or do your homework, do some research, and establish yourself as a guru first and then leave information that you can take responsibilities.

Commenting is a responsible job and you must make sure whatever you post are relevant, correct, and positive. This will surely make you a genuine marketer or authority in your niche.

4. Lacking Consistency

Commenting on blogs is an art itself, and it must be done with thorough research and passion. Comments without some consistency and personality often leave readers feel dazed and confused. Without consistency, you’ll also lose the attractiveness of your comments. As a result, you’ll lose your personality.

So I would recommend you to avoid lackluster comments, maintain the flow and personality of your writing. If people can relate with it, they’ll definitely want to click and visit back to your website to read more of what you have to say.

5. Text Make-ups

Often time lazy people in this world in a bid to get more attention and therefore more traffic back to their site, pepper their comments with colorful text, highlights, bolds and italics, without having anything to add to the blog post at all. I’m not saying it’s not uncommon to highlight your text to attract attention; in fact, it’s one of the strategies many marketers use to quickly get their visitor’s attention. But if you’re comments is out of context, irrelevant, negative, and more importantly inconsistent, then no matter how you pepper your text, then no one will want to visit back to your site.

Summary of 5 Secrets to Approve Your Comments on Blogs Quickly!

Alright, so you’ve found blogs to comment on. But as you’ll find later on, most of your blog comments often get turned down flat. You blog comments were considered irresponsible, spammy, and total disregard to the norms and values of blogging practices. Of course, you don’t want to be labeled as a spammer, so that’s why I’ve revealed 5 top secrets that I often use to get my blog comments approved on high authority and well-established blogs.

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Good Qualities of a Mobile Web Advertisement

Mobile Advertising 06/11/2012

            Creating an electronic advertisement is easy these days with sites like eBay and Craiglist but these have forms in which users have to fill them out as the output becomes quite generic for buyers. A template is present when they search for products bringing consistency which is also important but in creating a marketing advertisement is different as it can be displayed on other websites in different places. These can appear in the header, footer, and side sections as banners, plain text, or a combination of image and text. The difficulty, then, arises after ads have been created and published. How will they appear when viewed on smaller mobile devices like the Samsung Galaxy Tab or even smaller like an Xperia Mini?

            Below outlines several good qualities web ads should have that would still look good even on larger desktop computers:

 

  • Attractive appearance

The main purpose of having an ad is to attract more customers and clients for the business to progress. This can be better achieved if ads are pleasing to the eyes as people treat it like meeting new people for the first time–mostly judged first by the looks and second the personality. Several techniques to have a good ad appearance is for it use less colors and larger fonts. Advertisers must consider their ads will be seen by users on the go. Using too many colors may be too distracting for the eyes and these details which can normally be seen on a 19-inch-screen may not easily be readable on a 3-inch-screen of a mobile phone. Sometimes simplicity is better–less content in the ad is more for the consumer.

  • Balancing quality and file size

One thing advertisers may take for granted is the balance between quality and file size. If an advertisement is too web-optimized, it can end up looking very distorted  and pixelated and a common misconception in doing so for mobile users is that this cannot be seen. Gadgets now can zoom in to content which users cannot see up front and may view a distorted ad to be very ugly. What causes this dilemma is mobile internet is not as fast as people perceive it comparing to high speed DSL. Thus, the solution–choose the most compatible and consider that mobile internet speeds are improving every year. Using an image instead of a flash ad can go a long way yet retain the ad’s user experience without sacrificing file size unlike flash ads.

  • Clarity

Another common mistake advertisers take for granted is the placing of details on an ad. For mobile browsers, these details may not be seen especially when using smaller fonts. An ad must contain only what is necessary like product price if a promotion is happening, product feature if it involves some new feature. Keeping things concise and easy to read as going mobile, smaller details cannot be seen.

  • Easy-to-recognize

Is the ad easily recognizable and can easily be related to the company advertising? Would Facebook advertise using the colors of orange and black when their company colors are mostly blue and white? In mobile advertising, the rules of general web advertising do not apply. Sometimes, mobile advertising needs to be just about product and company presence. Selling something does not have to come first.

  • HTML5 vs. flash vs. Regular text & image

Perhaps this has the most enormous impact on an ad. There is no one to blame, however, for this extra hurdle. What happened is mobile Apple products, which many today have adopted, cannot view flash content as the company cites security reasons. From a culture standpoint, it has been tradition to launch ads via flash as advertisers can animate them without having a large file size than the traditional GIF file format. Millions of Apple users, then, cannot view ads in flash making advertisers rethink their plans sometimes catering to this population by creating specific ads. What to do? Take note that another good quality of a mobile ad is the ability of an advertiser to choose which is more effective in terms of compatibility. Mobile devices are not similar and can get diverse quick. What others have applied is the text and image technique as this can be seen even on older operating systems like Symbian, which is still around today. Some advertisers now opt to advertise using HTML5 as it is close to universal.

 

Having a good-looking and recognizable design retaining its clarity and conciseness at the same time balancing quality and size by using the right platform be it HTML5, flash, or image and text combination can lead to an effective advertisement not only on the display platform but also on mobile.

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Some DO’s and DON’Ts in Mobile Advertising

Mobile Advertising 06/11/2012

            Consumers by now are fed up with advertising they see not only on their desktop computers but also on their mobile phones in the form of text, push notifications, or web ads because many advertisers fail to consider an essential ingredient. When presenting an ad, promoters must consider the viewer experience and presentation is key. If a company broadly publishes their ad on multiple platforms and uses online companies to promote their business without considering the methods, the company may be viewed by prospective clients as desperate.

            What can be done then? Advertisers may argue they have no control on how the ads are presented especially on other external websites and applications. While this is true, it may be wise to invest in companies that have fairly good reputation for building good apps and publishing ads in an unobtrusive way. Below are some DO’s when doing mobile advertising. The DON’Ts, of course, are the opposite of the DO’s:

  • SMS
    • Ensure there is permission or some authorization to text the prospective client about company promotions. If they dropped off their business cards in the bowl or sent an email inquiry containing their contact number signaling they want to be contacted, consent to text them is there.
    • When sending text messages marketing a product or service or even just to increase product/company awareness, keep things concise. Prospective clients may have the patience to read through a message but may not when the message length is greater than 160 characters.
    • Give the recipients the power to do something with the text. Just sending them a message saying there is a new service for them and nothing else is just telling them. By giving them the power, for example, to contact the company or to visit the website, they may do more than just read the ad.
    • Lastly, ensure recipients are given an option to “opt out” of the service. They may not like being texted for new promos. Take extra precaution now that there are laws against spamming/sending text messages without consent.
  • Apps/Push notification
    • If the company has the resources to pull off developing a mobile application, and has published it with some already using it, it can be tricky to advertise on it especially that the app can be quite diverse in terms of category/genre. One thing is for certain, though, that the advertisement must not interfere with the user experience when dealing with the application. If the company advertises on its own app or on other apps, ensure it isn’t obtrusive. What classifies as obtrusive are as follows:
      • Ads constantly appearing on the bottom/top part of the screen where some necessary button or navigation is present can annoy users which will eventually force them to uninstall the app itself. This is a big no-no. Ads should be presented when the app is still loading or if truly necessary to be there while the app is running then should be small enough to avoid blocking necessary buttons/tiles or appear for a brief period of time. Moreover, showing an ad before the application loads can also be another low-profile method.
      • Stopping the application itself to show off the ad is quite rude. There are better moments to show off the ad which were previously mentioned.
      • Blocking the content of the app itself is also considered rude and renders the app useless.
    • Using push notification to deliver messages should not happen very often. One example is when users turn off their WiFi either on their device or router and turn it back on a couple of hours later just to find another push notification and the same thing happens in the next few minutes or hours is too much. Delivering ads occasionally at most thrice a week would suffice. Less is definitely more.
  • QR codes
    • The only thing that can go wrong when publishing QR codes is publishing the wrong one or not publishing any code at all. But placing it by its lonesome is also a mistake. Ensure a regular ad is accompanied by a QR code so mobile users can take a snapshot of it which immediately brings them to where the company wants them to go.

 

When doing these ad techniques, one must follow the basic DO’s listed above along with a conservative principle to avoid spamming and getting in trouble with the law. Also, it is best to consider user experience both on the app and on the ad.

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Great Places to Start in Mobile Advertising

Mobile Advertising 06/11/2012

Millions of online users around the world do not randomly visit similar sites without it being even relatively popular. Facebook, for instance, has amassed more than 500 million active users all around the world. Search giants like Google also receive tons of net traffic. But these are the trends for this generation and something new may come along. For now, these sites offer a significant venue for advertising and if not, information for mobile advertising.

There is no real place, company, or service that solves the problems in mobile advertising one problem being the awkwardness of having ads on one’s phone which may have a very small 2-inch screen to as large as a 10.1-inch screen. Mobile advertising is still very young which explains the lack of understanding in employing effective techniques to market in that platform. It is necessary, therefore, to outline places to start. Below is a list of websites that offer services towards mobile advertising:

Google

Perhaps the largest of all firms, Google nearly controls all mobile search and advertising. When users on-the-go need to look for something, they turn to Google and the company has taken advantage of this by displaying ads with results even on mobile phones and tablets. Although no figure can prove these are effective as consumers tend to be reluctant when buying something online especially in larger volumes, it also keeps ad pricing low. That explains why mobile ads are cheaper since, in addition, this advertising platform is still in its first phase.

Google also has a service allowing interested companies to “connect with… customers on mobile and tablets”.

Google Adwords

Facebook

See those ads on the right of one’s Facebook profile/page? Those are regular “desktop” version of ads. What, then, do the mobile ads look like? These are usually integrated in one’s Facebook streams that look like posts. They are tagged with “sponsored”. The question is: are these little things making money for the company? Amazingly so! The Business Finder reports their business earned them from $0 to $1 billion in two quarters. That actually tells something. Smaller and larger companies alike are starting to value and are willing to spend for advertising on the mobile platform. These businesses realize that although this platform is still very young, it is promising and worth the investment. It might be worth looking into Facebook for advertising especially on a difficult area like mobile. They offer advertising on a budget similar to Google.

https://developers.facebook.com/blog/post/2012/08/07/introducing-new-mobile-ads-for-apps

iOS Platform

Apple’s mobile operating system (OS), iOS, leads in increasing revenues close to 73% as reported by Techcrunch on October 25, 2012. Their figures show iOS leads at 46.37% while Android lags behind at 25.66% while the remaining operating systems fall short compared to the iOS. A good place to start with mobile advertising is through Apple’s mobile OS. One good reason could be the “sleek” way of introducing mobile ads either through push notifications or delivery via their controlled app store. However, it may be necessary to create an app first should one opt to deliver app ads.

Android Platform

When people do not have a mobile Apple product, they most likely would have with them an Android one. While Android does lag behind the iOS, it is still fairly popular. Having a development team working with the advertising group on the Android platform can easily develop company, product, and service presence on the mobile arena.

People

Sometimes it is not the place to start but the people. A team of individuals who are very much experienced in the mobile platform each with their own unique abilities (i.e. originality, creativity, inventiveness). Instead of scrambling looking for an effective way to make advertising work, rely on the people who know about it best.

Although mobile advertising is difficult, these places should get the advertising and marketing campaign going. Not only do these places give that spark to start but also guide one through the process which is still uncharted by many.

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Common Implementations in Mobile Advertising

Mobile Advertising 06/11/2012

            With technology companies pushing newer portable gadgets to the market and telecoms improving wireless internet connectivity for consumers, it is without a doubt mobile browsing will greatly affect the human lifestyle. Businesses have taken advantage of such development implementing innovative advertising techniques targeting people on the go. These ads are not only seen on mobile versions of websites but also on iOS, Windows Phone, and Android applications especially those classified under freeware. But it did not start off this way. In fact, one popular way to push ads on mobile is through mobile phone–specifically SMS.

            Below showcases some of the various popular implementations of mobile advertising:

 

  • Text & Call

An essential feature of a mobile phone is its call capabilities as without it, it would not be called a phone. What was added long ago was a feature previously executed by the beeper–text. Now, these two features are long-standing and advertisers make the most of these.

Advertising by calling via landline is not uncommon and in fact, many have experienced a call or two. This also applies to mobile phones where businesses take the extra time to call up prospective clients hoping to catch their interests. It may have been more tolerated before but in this modern age, it is simply annoying. Text messages containing ads were also popular (and still is) although modern laws control such advertising as it can be classified as spam, which becomes classified as such when recipients did not “opt in” to the service.

One advantage to advertising via text is its independence from the internet. There is no need to have an internet connection from either side (sender and receiver) to exchange messages (or have it one-way). It is also more cost-effective as unlimited texting and calling plans are available.

Another advantage to text advertising is the quickness of receiving and reading text messages on the end of the receiver. It does not take long for him/her to get through a message provided it is less than 160 characters (or fits 1 message). The readiness of consumers, today, to read messages even if the recipient is unknown to them gives this edge.

Calling to advertise is also a method to advertise but it can be expensive and can be frustrating when phone calls are immediately put down should the receiver judge it is an unnecessary marketing call. Telecoms, who have control over the spectrum, commonly practice this advertising technique. It is also a way for them to check up on customer satisfaction and remind for bill payments at the same time advertise.

With all the advantages, be wary, however, in these two methods. Ensure recipients are given an option to “opt out” from receiving such messages and phone calls. Depending on the laws of the state, region, or country, one could get sued because of poor mobile advertising techniques.

  • Application Advertising

Since Apple has introduced the apps market, many have followed suit such as Android’s Playstore.  Millions of mobile gadgets now have access to apps which they can freely download. Some freeware apps, however, do contain advertisements either on-screen while the application is running, during loading intervals or interruptions while using the app.

One advantage to such method of advertising is the implementation. Some app developers do accept people to advertise on their applications with some fee. This can get expensive if the user base of the specific app is plenty but for smaller apps and starting developers, they can easily accept smaller amounts for the sake of funding.

There are quite a few disadvantages on the user side than the advertisers’. One is app advertising tends to intrude on user experience. Seeing ads all the time while using the app can make the user uninstall the software thus the ads won’t reach future users. Another disadvantage is the privacy concern. Some users are afraid their browsing or app-usage data is being monitored and advertisers may specifically target ads based on data collected.

  • Push notifications

When Apple introduced their mobile operating system, iOS, they also created something called push notifications which is similar to a popup that can appear either on top of the screen or be a bit obtrusive and appear in the middle. Sometimes the message is about upgrading the app or an ad about a sale price on the paid version of the app. Push notifications have expanded in use and also in platform now present in Android.

The only difficulty in advertising using push notification is it is practically application advertising in another form. When the app is not running (or probably is in the background), the pop up appears especially when connected on the internet. The difficulty is in the creation of the app which may require a development team especially if one is aiming to produce a quality app.

  • QR code

            Seen those square things (three squares on three sides) with odd patterns on them on newspapers, magazines, posters, and on the internet? Well, odds are those are QR (quick response) code. This is similar to a bar code only that mobile phones and apps can now read these codes, for example, in visiting websites or visit online places with bargain deals. Advertising using these codes can be a good feature on any ad especially now that users have access to more dynamic mobile operating systems such as Android and iOS.

  • Web

The most common place to put ads on the internet is on websites and the platforms are not limited to huge desktop computers but also expands to tablets, mobile phones, and other portable gadgets. In fact, many sites detect browsers being used by the end-user to see if they are using a mobile platform and have even created mobile versions of the sites.

Being the most common, its greatest advantage is compatibility. Most mobile gadgets are based on their larger and more stationary counterparts not only in hardware but also in software. Thus, anything created for a website, be it ads or content, can also be seen on the multitude of mobile devices. Creating ads via the web platform is easy and viewing it on mobile is relatively simple too.

However, there are some disadvantages in displaying web ads. One is some mobile platforms like Apple’s iOS do not allow any viewing of flash. Ads started out with simple photos (.jpg), transitioned to moving ones (.gif), and eventually on to flash (.swf/.flv). The iPad and iPhone, to name a few, cannot view content and ads written using flash. Instead, they heavily rely on HTML5 to view such content. The upside is Android devices can view these flash files although not as quick as one would expect from a desktop.

 

There are many methods of mobile advertising but SMS, application, mobile web, QR codes, and push notifications are the most common kinds advertisers can take advantage in today’s modern generation. Among all of them, SMS is the more cost-effective method as it can get wider reach than the other methods although employing more than one technique does make a company’s advertising reach extend farther and perhaps better than the rest.

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Basics of Email Marketing

Email Marketing 22/10/2012

            The internet enables companies to have a wider reach in communicating with their buyers and the prospective clients through email. The goal is to spread the company’s message to the consumers about their newest products, latest news, and inventive people-oriented services. The problem is this form of marketing has been relatively ruined by spammers who rely on sending tons of emails with nothing much in it but some short text and a link. People mistakenly view email marketing as spam sending. While the differences are quite large, it is up to the email marketers to write effectively emails that differentiate them from the rest (or spam in this case).

            Granting there is no true method of doing email marketing, there are, of course, some basic concepts to follow:

  • Establishing a list through email signup

The first step is to establish a list of email addresses where the marketing emails will be sent however this can be the most trying times. People do not readily give up their emails these days just so they could be spammed even by legitimate companies. Thus, it is wise to start small by having family and friends interested in the email system. Another way to start is to place an input box where users who visit the company’s website can place their email address and “subscribe” to any updates the company sends.

  • Newsletter

This is actually part of email signup but marketed differently. If resources are enough or in better supply, the web team can offer to publish an electronic newsletter showcasing the company’s latest innovations and awards. Newsletters can be limitless in content but must stay relevant. It would be great to see articles on the newsletter featuring interactions of larger companies with the smaller company the consumers are subscribing to.

Newsletters are also a great avenues where consumers can showcase the use of the company’s product/services and a way for the company to give customer testimonials vital for building consumer trust.

  • Good writers

It is important to realize how people play a great role in a company’s success most especially those working for the organization. Having writers who understand the goals and ethics can make or break the email marketing strategy. These writers must have been trained of course in writing but most importantly well-aware of how the product/service works and how all these features and aspects play a role in the customers’ lives.

  • Staying Connected (Every now and then)

People want to hear updates every so often from companies they have trusted. For an older and trusted company, it would be wise to send monthly updates especially if there are new products and services. If it is a new start-up, sending updates every week or so should be fine unless the market being dealt with is the elderly market. People tend to have more patience going through creative messages provided they are not frequently sent. Regardless of the age of the company, sending too many emails in a short period of time can mean losing consumer trust as they may regard the messages as spam.

  • Responding appropriately

An additional task aside from sending out emails is receiving some back. It is a good thing to get feedback from respondents especially if it is related to the marketing email sent by the company. One can gauge the level of interest consumers have on the product/service. However, responding appropriately will have a bigger effect than simply replying to the email by answering their questions. Depending on the situation, though, it is best to answer questions directly and if there are a lot of them, wiser to refer them to a frequently asked page but if going one step further is involved, helping out the consumer can have the greatest effect. Giving tips and suggestions to the consumers will not only make them feel welcome but also make them feel the company is going the extra mile for them. Having that positive effect on consumers by a simple yet appropriate response can lead to more customers.

  • If all else fails, let someone else do it

There are online services that specialize in email marketing and while they can be costly, they may put out the ache in headache. Make use of online services especially those that run a free trial for 30-60 days to get a feel for their services. If they do not offer such trial, simply ask. A company’s growth does not rely solely on itself but with the help of other marketing agencies.

 

In order for messages not to end up being filtered by email service providers, they must be both effective and personal. Having a list of email addresses by interested customers, creating newsletters, having on-board good writers, staying connected with the consumers, responding to their emails properly, and employing third-parties to help out, can put that single email not in the filter but in the actual inbox of each individual.

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Email Marketing through e-Newsletters

Email Marketing 22/10/2012

            Newsletters help spread the word of a company’s interest in their customers and this can come in the physically printed or electronic form or both. Email marketers make use of newsletters extending the line of communication to current and potential clients. This guide will outline the customary practices in creating an e-Newsletter that is not only instructive but also exciting. But first, the basics have to be covered before starting the e-newsletter:

  • List of email addresses

Customers who have left their calling cards in a bowl in the office or their email addresses on the company website must be placed on the list of customers who may want to be contacted online for new products and services. The names can come secondary so long as there are addresses. That list must exist before starting the newsletter. Otherwise, who would it be sent to?

  • Newsletter Sign-up on website

One way to add email addresses to the list is to have a field on the site itself that allows visitors from all over the world to subscribe to the newsletter. This can boost company visibility and lengthen that reaching power.

  • Writers, layout artists, photographers

Without anyone to write on  a newsletter, the newsletter would not materialize. Writers are necessary and they must know the company’s products and services as much as the engineers or the designers. Sometimes this can be difficult but writers who do the necessary research will ensure any publication they write will not embarrass the organization.

What about “layout” artists? Are they necessary? Not exactly. If there is someone fairly knowledgeable on creating and editing layouts using the computer, it is therefore unnecessary to employ someone to do it. It is good here to explore people who may have the hidden talent to perform such a task especially those working in the IT area.

This is not journalism but photographers can become quite useful in the creation of a newsletter. Some writers are into photography so integration of the job is very much possible. Plus, publishing too many photos in the newsletter can make it look disorganized.

The preparations above should get one started in creating the newsletter. But first, what is a newsletter?

Think  of a newsletter as a newspaper but instead of it coming every day, it comes in periodically. Depending on how often a product/article/service is updated, the amount of e-newsletters to be sent in a year can vary. A common practice is to publish monthly as yearly publications can be reserved for physical printing. Newsletters are mainly used to give out news and information that is of interest to clients.

Before considering the newsletter path, here is one burden to consider: cost. Most newsletters are freely given by the company but uses company time, money, and resources thus it is an investment to go into such a business. Being an investment, the company have in mind it will bring about greater returns in terms of customer population and future customer investments.

Now that the foundation has been laid, it is time to move on to the actual newsletter:

  • Focus (or what it’s all about)

What will be the focus of the newsletter? Will it be simply giving updates to the clients? Should it cover news within the company like possible acquisitions, new researches, a call for customer feedback of a certain product? Will the newsletter be an extension of service of the website? The first newsletter will determine the direction that the company is moving towards and it must be planned out. The common route being introducing new products and giving huge discounts. However, there is one general rule that is observed by many. For every published electronic newsletter, there must be a button or a hyperlink users can click that allows them to perform an action the company desires them to do. Clients would feel powerless and directionless when they are not guided by the newsletter on what actions they could take else they simply delete the newsletter, which is sad.

  • Layout

Writing is half the equation in making a newsletter. The biggest thing that attracts people to read newsletters is the design of the pages. Simplicity will always prevail but details bring out true success in a newsletter. It may be necessary to take inspiration elsewhere on how layouts are done. Older physical magazines may be lying around the room somewhere which could stimulate the creative mind to come up with something new and colorful. Details, as previously mentioned, must be present when required. If step-by-step instructions or a release of a new product is made to be advertised, having photos at different angles will help improve the general design of the pages overall turning out a well-thought newsletter blueprint at the same time making it humanly readable. In a nutshell, a visual signature should be established.

  • Format dilemma between using html, .jpg, .pdf, plain text…etc.

The medium at which the newsletter is sent is electronic yet there are numerous ways to deliver such content to the clients. Without thinking of this dilemma ahead, the newsletter may end up having to be overhauled to fit a certain format. Thus, it would be wise to think of what platform the newsletter should be given out where each has its own advantages and disadvantages.

  • HTML

The great thing with HTML is it is browser-compatible and relatively compatible on email clients like Firefox’s Thunderbird or Microsoft’s Outlook. In terms of security, although not proven, but it is reasonably safe to view just basic HTML data on a computer. However, images may not appear where they should be or may not appear at all if the email provider is blocking it like Gmail (Note: In Gmail, images can still be displayed by clicking that option in the email). The flexibility of adding images on certain areas might limit the design of the newsletter itself. Overall, HTML is a compatible platform that guarantees readability but may sometimes lose “design-ability”.

  • JPG/Images

Sending out a huge image as a newsletter is not unheard of. The great thing about doing it in just one image is its portability and size. It fits in just one file (although PDF does too) and can come in higher qualities. The design of the newsletter can be very flexible. It can be made like that of a brochure or leaflet which can easily be printed by anybody with a computer and printer. The downside is the intense requirement for it to look well-organized. If it is printed to be a brochure, it must fold in areas where it is supposed to thus the layout must have been considered beforehand requiring more work not only in aesthetic layout but also in physical layout. File size can also become a problem as image files can be quite a big file to download. As a whole, JPG/images can be used for newsletters but mostly for printing them as file size alone will slow down the distribution (on the company’s end) and download (on the client’s end) of the newsletter.

  • PDF

Perhaps a comfortable format by many since tablets and ebook readers have come out in technology, PDF (portable document format) is widespread and contains various formats ranging from magazines to ebooks. This can also include newsletters which is a great mode to publish on. Writers and layout artists may be more familiar working on a document rather than on pure images and HTML thus this may be the path of least resistance. Also, publishing using the file format .pdf is not that difficult today. One aspect to look at this is its “spreadability” since it can be shared to others in the client’s email list (although .jpg can also be shared). However, people are more comfortable receiving PDFs than suspicious-looking JPGs.

  • Plain text

Sending a newsletter in simple plain text is good if the company is after compatibility but this modern age has brought better computers and faster internet speeds. It may be a burden to publish in plain text unless the target is email users who are very mobile. Mobile devices may be limited to viewing files even in PDF form although images are acceptable.

  • Sending of Newsletter

Depending on the format, sending the newsletter is nearly the last step. If the circular were to come as an attachment, that may be difficult for some whose internet security will not allow due to possible viruses and other malware. However, informing the recipient in the email itself that since they are subscribed to the newsletter, the company can easily remind them they have done so and the company has politely attached on the email the said newsletter. If that is still an issue, laying the newsletter out in HTML is a great option where most email users can view it without too much trouble with security.

 

Doing a newsletter and giving it away for “free” is an investment in itself. One must be confident the newsletter carries out great content and information at the same time guides consumers on what to do next rather than give a lecture. Format is also key–how the newsletter is published can either make or break this business. However, in the long run, the investment will pay off when done correctly with the tips and tricks in this guide.

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Timing in Advertising through Email

Email Marketing 22/10/2012

            It can be challenging to market products and services using email but it is actually a necessary platform to stay connected with clients. Many, if not all, companies and their managers make use of the internet exchanging emails, documents, and files within and outside their network. By sending marketing emails to professionals, housewives, and others, the company performing email marketing is keeping in touch. However, challenges will arise and the marketing staff may be even unaware of it. Marketing emails pass through spam filters and many times it may end up being filtered either ending up in the spam folder or not in the clients’ mail at all. It may be efficient in the long run to put out seasonal advertisements targeting specific times of the year to advertise.

            Seasonal advertising is, in reality, a technique used by many organizations to save money especially when they advertise on TV not limited to the four seasons–spring, winter, summer, and fall. It can also mean advertising at times when the number of people watching has greatly increased. This can happen during major sports events, TV idol shows, premiere showings, and such. It can be expensive as this can be considered “prime time” but it is relatively more cost-effective than advertising daily especially advertising during moments where it’s not the season, time, or when no one is watching. For example, mangoes tend to be abundant during summer time but marketing mangoes during fall or winter may not ‘click’ with consumers as they are likely used to having those fruits during summer. Thus, it is necessary to hit at the right time.

Below are some tips in seasonal advertising that will effectively allow one to send emails at the right time:

  • Study the market

Before one can send out electronic newsletters and the like, one must study the market. A dominant product may be eating up the market thus it may be a wrong time to compete. It does not mean one should wait when the competition slowly evaporates but the product or service one is offering may not get the attention it deserves. A question to ask: do people need it now? Sometimes a product/service not be as important as other products as of the moment. Marketing hotdogs when the ‘in thing’ is popcorn can be a waste. Yes, a little innovation on the product goes a long way but timing also is good especially when one has done market research. Send that email once the research has been done.

  • Have promos

When it’s the season, like back-to-school times, many products related to school pop up. Laptops, bags, books, and even notebooks have some gimmick that entices many to buy. This is a good thing to follow as many potential customers do expect to receive such emails regarding seasonal promos. Create promos of one’s own that is not only competitive in price (not necessarily cheaper) but inventive. Discounts, buy-one take-one, and freebies are common routes.

A great venue for having promos is during holidays where many others also have massive discount sales and promos. Here, a company can take advantage of consumers’ willingness to spend as it is the season. Send those emails a few weeks or days before.

  • Create a new fad

People can get bored looking at the same advertisement and the same promo schemes therefore it is of great advantage to create a new fad during the season when peoples’ interests are still there although doing so is easier said than done. Some companies may require proposals and these proposals require research and further requiring more time where in the end, the created fad may be too late. A catchy fad does not have to be something expensive. A change in color, modification in design, adding personalized services–these count in creating that new fad. Other companies may even follow suit if it catches on. Make sure when sending the emails, it looks modern or chic highlighting the inventive step in the already existing product/service.

  • Do things out of need when necessary

Sometimes the product of market research will show the needs of consumers. Creating products that suit the season is a big risk as it may not click at all to the public or competition can quickly catch up. On the other hand, it may be very successful. If consumers need better casings for a new mobile phone, that demand can easily be met if the company has a keen eye. Also, sending that email first when the need is slowly rising can put the company ahead of the rest.

 

The service/product by a company may be good for all seasons but it may not be so for consumers. There is great significance in timing and looking for trends and spending seasons. Sending emails now that many consumers are connected online at the right time can better a company’s profile and its relationship both with current customers and potential clients.

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Effective Email Marketing Revealed

Email Marketing 22/10/2012

            Modern times have taught many internet citizens to discern between a real email and SPAM mail largely due to how the content is written. Baiting recipients with ill-intentioned hyperlinks, purposive writing (for the sake of selling something), and just poor writing ensures the email goes to the trash. People want to get information on products they may be familiar with but finding the perfect individuals and where each has a chance to participate and respond through email is close to impossible especially in email marketing. There are several reasons for the failure of this marketing system:

  • The receiver may not learn anything from the text.

The introduction can have a great impact to people who receive emails especially if it is about a product. If it is addressed to a generic person (using sir/mam) alone, it may show how poorly the company researches their market. The content may also fail to attract the reader since the writing is too broad or gives a long history of their company and/or product. Dwelling too much on things like individual features of the product is also poor practice. Users may not want to know these as it may be too unnecessary.

  • Second, he [receiver] may find nothing useful in it. 

Randomly sending emails is not an efficient way to market but a good way to send SPAM mail. This is a popular method and that is why when people check their emails, they automatically can detect if something is SPAM if the product information being sent to them was not coming from their own inquiry and interest.

  • What is expected of him after he views the message?

Most marketing emails include the company’s contact information most especially the link to their website but sometimes, readers will ask the question: “So what?” If it is not outlined clearly on what their next steps are, it will become easier for them to just delete the message.

 

There are failures in every system but there are also solutions that could evoke a lot of responses from prospective clients. Below are tips to help answer these questions and note: since communication is through email and loading images and other media on an email client may be difficult, the tips below may focus more on the writing than integrating media:

  • Self-interest

Market research is a good first step before doing email marketing but once it is done and this system is to be employed, it is wise to keep the idea of self-interest in mind. What happens is readers are not interested in what the sender thinks or what products and services a company offer especially when it comes from companies, products, and services they have never heard of before. People are interested in themselves and their families. The trust has not been likely built from the ground up.

One way to deal with self-interest is to re-write the way emails are normally written. Simple is better. A message that says, “Hey, we noticed your interest in the mobile market and we actually sell gadgets that you might be interested in. Just send me a message or visit our website”. Although simplistic, this email message is much better than a long narrative on the history of the company and the history of its products. It shows that the company has done its research and is taking into consideration the readers’ interests. Thus, it is important to show interest in other peoples’ interest in the email.

  • Tailor-made

It is difficult to escape that misconception of email marketing as SPAM sending. A way to overcome this obstacle is to write the mail as if it is to be sent personally for that person. This is easier said than done but it is doable. The keys in writing include focusing on helping the recipients not just on the products but focus on how they can do their work more efficiently even without the product/service but of course highlight advantages of said product/service. Think of this step as the first step to open communications between the company and the consumer. People just want to know the writer is human and not some robot being forced to write to them.

  • Good Product Confidence

Email marketers must admit the products’/services’ flaws but they must also focus on the advantages of using them. It is true no product is perfect and staying aggressive by match-pricing can be difficult. The best way to show through email the competitive edge is to deliver good product confidence along with intimate knowledge in the design and service. Some marketers may have an intense amount of information with them when showing off their product but if they meet consumers who are more confident other products are better in terms of quality and pricing, they fall flat in expectations. Thus, is good to have a lot of information at the same time have that self-confidence the company’s product is much better but if not, it can still be done well by focusing on the consumer’s personal needs and building that confidence in the consumer on the product. In short, give consumers what they can actually use.

 

Effective email marketing not only involves taking into account the self-interest of the individual consumer, tailor-making the emails, and having good product confidence but it is also good to ask the simple questions rather than the difficult ones, the most important being: “What do they get out of it?” In another point of view (from the consumer), “What can I get out of this?” If these questions can be answered satisfactorily and the tips above utilized, emails can become more effective.

 

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Write Better Email Subject Lines

Email Marketing 22/10/2012

            There is nothing much a marketer can do when writing an email as there are not a lot of parts in it in the first place. There is the recipient, subject line, body, and that send button. The body, of course, contains a lot of content that is very informative and probably well designed that would please the eyes of the readers. But what makes readers click on the email to read it in the first place and not click-and-delete is the subject line which is like the headline of a news article. This small yet significant detail requires some looking into just for writing 3-15 words.

Below are some things to AVOID. Also, some DO’S are included in writing subject lines:

AVOID

  • Some of these words

There are actually a few words which are so overused, they must not be reused most especially in subject lines. Spammers have ruined the integrity of some of these words and like it or not, writers have to be more ingenious than usual.

Some of the words that should not be written in the subject line even if it is genuinely meant is “free”. Saying something like “Free iPad” will not fool a lot of the younger and mature internet users as they are readily suspicious of such. Another word to avoid is “sale” or “x% off”. People do not really need to know the company is having a generic sale as they will also think it is probably too good to be true. Also, users would probably have the experience by now “sale” items does not apply to all products (and deep down, consumers want a 70% sale on ALL items, which is difficult on the business side). Generally, having numbers on the subject line should be avoided. Some of the other words include reminders, help, gifts, and (earn/big) money & cash. Anything shady to the reader will alert him/her immediately and writing these words in the subject line can lead to immediate email deletion thus must be avoided or reworded.

  • ALL CAPS

            Nobody wants to read anything for that matter in ALL CAPS. Thus, it is more effective writing normally with proper capitalization. Seeing a subject line in caps indicate a rush on the side of the sender making it look unprofessional if an older company does it.

DO

  • Use these words instead

Sale–something better which can be used is “price updates”. “Invitation to…”, “Our shop by the sea to open soon”, “Upcoming events in the city of…” and many more of these words can be more effective than the plain ones. The rule is to keep things exciting and appetizing to the email recipients. Also, including the name of the person, first or a combination of first and last, gives a hint of personalization. Of course, so many things can go wrong by overdoing it.

  • Keep the message short

            Unlike meeting someone in real person where social norms dictate politeness, emails are not physically confrontational and the same rules do not apply. An email must have a subject line that can be read and understood quickly else it ends up being ignored or worse, deleted.

  • Relate to the clients’ interests

If new products/services/information is released via email to clients, these must stay in line within their interests. It is like being a shoe company and for the past six months, the company has been sending newsletters about the latest trends in shoes they are selling but all of a sudden, the company sends an update that it is now selling motorcycle tires. While it is good for a business to expand, marketing this through email without considering the interests of the clients’ plus a lack of proper introduction at the very least can result in the failure of the email system. Recipients might think the company has shifted gears and no longer caters to their needs. It is, therefore, safer to stick to what customers know and what they are comfortable to expand on especially via email.

In addition, here are some good practices to follow:

  • Send a message with the same subject just once. Repetition can be very annoying but if reminders in content are necessary, ensure something new is added like a promo or news about the latest product/service.
  • Be specific about the message. Anything vague will be considered by the reader as a waste of his/her time.
  • Let the subject line be straight forward–nothing too cheesy or buttered up.
  • Think of writing a newspaper headline and not an email. That way, one can condition himself to think of something eye catchy.
  • Summarize and creatively describe the message of the email in the subject line without overdoing it. Supposing that it is about some promo, indicating it in the subject line will do not much good but describing it can be better.

 

The power of a single word is taken for granted. Once it is said, it can never be taken back and in emails, the subject line is the front line. Some will argue subject lines, which contain just a few words, have little to no effect on viewership but it is time to face this fact: what is the first thing users will see upon opening their email? Is it the body of each email or the subject line? Odds are readers will see the email only once and decides immediately whether to read it or not by reading the effective subject line outlined in this guide.

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Offline and Online Display Advertising

Display Advertising 18/10/2012

            Anything being sold posted online or offline can be considered as display advertising. These advertisements exist online on many sites especially on those that derive income from advertising engaging the audience. Ads come in the form of images and captions on the product commonly being featured on Facebook or Google Ads. In the early days of the internet, animated GIF banners were all the rage and some, today, still make use of such method to show off products. In a modern sense, this is outdated but still considered advertising. In addition to online advertising, offline advertising can play a major role in revenue generation by publishing on printed media (i.e. newspapers, magazines). Note that in advertising, it is not limited to a physical product being sold. It can also refer to specialized services being offered by the company through its website virtually or otherwise.

            There are no truly effective advertising techniques let alone advertising avenues that guarantees success. As they say, “to each his own”. However, there are some basics that need to be covered mostly on where one should publish ads and their pros and cons. Below is a list of places to advertise and each strengths and weaknesses: (Note that offline and online print advertising tips are merged as the principles are similar.)

  • Traditional Print/Website Post

A classic and common way of showing to the world (well, at least the local market) the newest product released by the company is to have an article published in popular print media. The article must be written by the company (or hire a press release writer) that showcases all the features of the latest product along with the necessary photos. This is also true in online publishing not in a scholarly journal way but publishing on a website. However, a printed advertisement that looks like a regular ad both offline and online will utterly fall flat and be unread by many. Techniques to attracting readers to run through the details of the ad include:

  • the giving of promos like massive mark-down rates, limited-edition offers, and until supply lasts deals;
  • the use of photos rather than massive uses of text;
  • usage of bullet points as they are more attractive than lengthy paragraphs;
  • proper deployment of background colors including the use of white space–using the right colored backgrounds and keeping in mind less is more (cluttered and dense designs do not look “cool”);
  • the delivery of concise information that could be new information for the readers where they can go through the ideas as quickly as possible.

It is good to emphasize all these tips are practically useful even for online advertising. In particular, Apple Inc. has made amazing use of white space–displaying only one product and a caption in one ad where the readers’ attention are immediately caught because of the ad’s simplicity.

  • Television/Online Video

The rules for displaying products on TV will vary and may cost a bit more especially if the company/publisher wants to have a lengthy presentation. Again, less is more. Below are some tips into TV/video advertising:

  • It would be wise to review how competition do their ads (if there is a competition) and become inspired to create one’s own.
  • Another tip is to do something simple but creative. Having too many fancy effects on a video presentation signals the viewers the amateurish efforts done to make the ad disgracing the product or service being offered. Apple again takes a good lead and example by showcasing only a simple white background and two to three people talking about how their product is better than the rest. Read again: people talking. Now that’s simple yet effective.
  • Time slot will matter and having prime time will cost more especially for TV ads. Researching on the target market for one’s product and services should give the time frame on when and where the ad should be deployed. A good-looking advertisement will go to waste if it is only shown at 3AM.
  • Market research will not solve all problems on advertising but it will make advertising more efficient, focused, and targeted. Is the target market for the young and internet savvy or the elderly and not-so savvy? By knowing this ahead, it can save more time and money in the future.
  • The media where the presentation will be published will also matter. Basically, the main question to be answered is: Does the media already have a base audience? Youtube, for example, can have a million views just for one video. If that many people visit the site per day, it would be wise to take advantage of their platform for advertising.
  • Traditional Billboards/Online Forums

If one can afford it, presenting the products and services on billboards, be it electronic or not, (there are electronic billboards but TV tips can apply), will have a far-reaching effect on individuals who may not even know about the product/service being offered by the company. Comprehensive research is not even required as long as a dense jam-packed number of people and vehicles will pass that street or area. Also, online forums having a large member base can also be a great area to advertise. It is good to start on forums that is locally based on where the company is likewise based. Reaching out to the community through billboard and online forum advertising can help spread the word particularly for a small start-up.

 

No one can deny the necessity for advertising. Without it, nobody else would know about the uniqueness of a new product/service the consumers may have wanted and needed.  Of course, randomly going into advertising can be more costly. By performing research first especially on the target  market, utilization can be more efficient. Getting the message out there may sound easy and in fact it is by remembering all these tips and to keep things simple.

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Effective Text and Image Advertising

Display Advertising 18/10/2012

            Advertising can come in many forms–text, image, video, sound, and a combination of these. The most common, however, is the text and image advertising. Anyone with a Facebook (FB) account has seen these ads found usually on the right side of one’s FB profile. Those contain a combination of image, showcasing the product/service, and text in a form of a caption. But what makes those ads effective, if ever they are to the audience? That is difficult to determine without any statistics and monitoring software but that is not the focus here. Creating an effective  ad will undoubtedly have a wider viewership.

            Below are techniques one can apply to create an effective text and image ad:

 

  • Pure text advertising

This is probably regarded by many as an unattractive method of advertising. The consumers’ appetite rely on what they can see especially photos since they are not near the factory or store. Text length, alone, can discourage readers from continuing. There are techniques, however, in plain text advertising. Varying the font colors, style, and sizes have been the guidelines on the theme for Web 2.0.

The trick used here is creating the illusion of an image using text. This technique has also been used in art like cutting out newspaper articles to form, for example, a photo of a person’s face. Creating pure text ads can be intimidating even for experienced advertisers. Determination is a must-have trait along with creativity and ingenuity when working with pure text ads.

Text advertising may sound inferior as it is compared to modern methods but when considering the places they could view it, text ads can be very versatile allowing them to be published almost anywhere physically and digitally. Ads can be on books and newspapers that may not have space for photos, and older mobile phones unable to render images relying on text messages/SMS for information. Being the most versatile, it is also one of the cost-effective ways in advertising. Printing photos and images use more ink and time resulting in a higher investment than printing regular text. Likewise, loading images from online servers to users’ computers all around the world can use up a lot of bandwidth than loading text.

 

  • Pure image advertising

“A picture paints a thousand words”–at least that is what people remember when quoting a photo.

At this point before continuing, it would be good to differentiate a photo and an image. A photo is taking a snapshot from a moment in time whereas an image represents the likeness of a company or idea. An image can also be abstract and metaphysical not requiring a physical image but does necessitate the perception of the human mind which can be more powerful than a physical one. On the other hand, a material image can convey new ideas quickly if that is the target of the designer.

What is meant here is the physical image and this often requires a very talented, ingenious, and creative graphics artist. While that individual can be difficult to find, one can make use of the concept of simplicity–keeping the design simple. Here are some questions that need to be answered before producing the image:

  • What idea does one want to convey and emphasize to the public? Is it the innovation of the product/service?
  • Is it the originality, functionality, or design?
  • What about combining some, if not, all

Another thing to consider is the method of rendering the image which impacts readers differently:

  • Digital – shows off more of innovation and design but time-consuming on the part of the designer
  • Taking a photo – may seem easy but must follow composition of message and at times emotion

Does it matter what mode is chosen? Yes, of course, but the objective remains the same. The message that the designers want to relay to its viewers is still important and must stay intact when depicted in the image. A limitation in purely using an image is the lack of captioning but can still be quite effective by itself. Another possible drawback to consider is images can have large file sizes and the experience will vary greatly online than the traditional printed media where the image can be seen immediately. Loading speeds are slower as file size increases and users’ experiences will vary since their internet speeds also vary from user to user. But again, the advantage of image advertising is its comprehensibility is easily appreciated by a very broad age-range.

 

  • Combination of text and image advertising

Ultimately, many designers will fall back to using a combination of both text and image as it is truly more powerful as it is the sum of the parts. Making use of captions and unique labeling techniques enhance images delivering the message quickly without much of a fuss. The common format is the title, image, and text/caption:

  • Title –  should be catchy and does not have to be the title of the company but could be a tagline or a question that challenges viewers.
  • Physical image – easily understood and preferably shows only one idea
  • Caption – describing what the image is about and what the message of the designers hints at

 

It is recommended to use both text and image not only in traditional print media but also on online advertising. The main purpose of having an ad is to send a message coming from the company on a new product/service. With these tips, ads can become more functional and useful. If lucky enough, it can become viral and most importantly, memorable.

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Display Advertising On Multiple Platforms

Display Advertising 18/10/2012

            All the work that goes into advertising is useless if the  platform has not been thought of ahead of time. Where should the ad be viewed? Companies, in these times, want their message on almost all devices be it traditional or digital although digital is the way to go. Depending on the target market, the platform will vary but everyone wants to get in everything.

 

  • Traditional platform

When mentioning traditional, it does not mean that only old people do it but it simply means this platform has withstood the test of time as it is still around today. Newspapers, magazines, journals, and flyers are great examples under traditional platform and going through these places can be quite difficult in today’s era. Here are some things to take into consideration when going into traditional publishing:

  • The ad has to be designed to fit a required format and these formats vary from company to company. Thus, the format alone can be tedious to complete.
  • The design itself of the ad must be done in a way it can easily be scaled from a small size to a larger size and vice-versa as formats for publishing companies will vary. The selection of the image, therefore, is important along with a very concise caption.

While there are challenges in the traditional platform, it is not wise to immediately conclude it is a passé form of advertising. Digital advertising requires a constant flow of electricity whereas printed only requires human eyes to be seen. People also have been appreciating printed material like books so going into traditional publishing will also ensure viewership compatibility.

 

  • Web platform

This is a relatively easy place to publish ads as many consumers tend to shop online and use a lot of their free time on the internet. This platform is now a commonplace for ads. Many consumers today, however, are more aware of these ads and can easily get annoyed thus many ads today are ignored more readily than the previous decade. It is now necessary to have web ads that are not obtrusive to the view of the readers. Ads must not block any content they want to see as this makes viewers happy. Flashing ads, popular when GIFs also became popular, can get irritating quickly. Sadly, many sites have not moved on and still make use of flickering ads. Although it is necessary at times to have ads become dynamic, it is unnecessary for them to flash constantly as a try-hard attempt to grab the user attention.

Web users, when seeing ads online, are pickier in this generation. What can grab their attention are promos and just innovative products/services they have never heard of before. Design is still essential for ads to be effective but that inventive step is necessary for success.

 

  • Online Mobile Platform

The introduction of cheaper smartphones have led to the growth of mobile internet access in effect adjusting the way ads are to be designed. The main problem in the mobile platform is compatibility. Some ads may look great on tablets (since the screen is still large enough) but the absence of flash in some products lessens compatibility. Ads won’t be seen on sites that have built flash ads. Size is also a major factor when designing ads. These ads have to be designed in a way it can be visible on bigger mobile devices (i.e. tablets) and still legible at the very least on smaller mobile devices (i.e. smartphones).

Is it beneficial to go the extra mile to create mobile ads? Yes and no. If the target market involves users on the go, one should instead focus on the mobile platform rather than the traditional platform. It genuinely depends on the function and market.

 

  • Application Platform

Sometimes the product of a site is its applications. Mobile applications are great examples today. Free apps, in return for being free, place small ads to support the ads’ development. On the other hand, these ads can malfunction–their location on users’ screens will vary since not all mobile handsets have the same specifications and screen sizes. Many ads are obtrusive–blocking the view of the user intentionally just so the ads could be seen. While this is sadly true and necessary for the promotion and marketing aspect of a business, there are alternatives. Loading screens, where users wait for the application to load, could contain the ads making it inconspicuous. At best, it can get redundant but that is the least of the worries. Ads can be placed before and after the application loads. So long as the user-experience is not disrupted in the middle, users will be much happier.

 

  • Convenience through submission of ads online (ex. Adsense)

This platform actually still falls under the web platform but it deserves its own section. Many online sites offer their services to submit a company’s ad to be posted on other websites making it easier for one to publish instead of going to each affiliate site one by one. These submitted ads may show up anywhere if the company wants it to and there are even some options to specifically target these sites in these countries. Sites that offer these services vary in terms of specifics so it is best to contact first the popular ones before going to smaller companies.

 

There are many platforms to choose from. Should one advertise on all of these? As mentioned, it will depend on the target market. Budget constraints will also dictate the platforms to be used. Whichever one is chosen, these tips will make the ads more effective.

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Effective Video Advertising

Display Advertising 18/10/2012

When budget of time and money permits, video advertising is the way to go. The great thing about the current internet generation is the appreciation of video media by “regular” folk. YouTube has done a great job not only hosting user-generated content but also featuring them giving the videos an opportunity to become viral and mainstream. This opens up new methods of advertising in video. Older video advertising methods tend to be more expensive to display on the respective channels and viewers can easily skip the ad faster since many, if not all, of them know when a TV commercial is about to go on. Some ads, when lucky enough, could be considered hip and cool but are they “effective”? Do they target the right people? Is the message delivered correctly? Below are some tips to get started creating very effective ads:

 

  • Target market

It is always wise to do some basic research on who the video is to be marketed to. This may sound quick and easy but it highly depends on the nature of the product/service being offered. If it is targeted to the elderly generation, the video should relate to their time. Theme is key. The music and effects must relate to something the generation is familiar with. When the target audience is a younger one, modern techniques including 3D animation will entice them to watch. Determining the target market is the first step.

 

  • Platform for Publishing

Where should the video be published? Online? What about on internet TV? Downloadable on iTunes? Once the target market is identified, it might be wise to select where the ad should be published. Budget constraints will dictate where it can be published especially in places (i.e. TV stations) requiring payment. Granting it is not official in any book, online publishing is the best and cost-effective way to go as more and more, internet users are increasing and the gap between those who have and those who don’t have internet connection is diminishing.

Placing ads on storage media such as DVDs and flash drives can be difficult to do as people do not normally keep copies of ads on their personal flash drives most especially. But if the company is sponsoring some other video production (ex. aerobics video on DVD), they can place their ads on the DVD. Every time the user plays the DVD, they would constantly be reminded of the ad placed. However, it is impossible to change the ad on a DVD especially when distributed to the public so doing the video editing right the first time is crucial.

 

  • Creative and unique concept but not necessarily new (Inventive step)

Perhaps the first step many do when going into advertising is to obtain inspiration from other advertisements. One starts to take notice of the various camera angles, transitions, and techniques for a good shot by studying others. While is this a typical way to start, it can be dangerous. Some ad ideas may be someone else’s intellectual property. Thus, it is necessary to come up with something creative and unique yet does not require a complete rethink of advertising. Of course, this is easier said than done. The secret to doing something new yet maintain that inspired look is to take older ideas and place one’s own inventive step. For example, when other manufacturers want to show off how strong their bulletproof vest, they shoot it using rifle rounds. One can amp it up by dramatically shooting this time a small shoulder-fired rocket. At first glance, it will sound like a copycat move but if the product does indeed survive a rocket shot, that would be a great inventive step. Also, remember that an ad does not need to be replaced monthly or even yearly. If it is really good and viewed by many, that same video could continue to drive in sales and revenue.

 

  • Keeping things simple

An ad does not have to be ten minutes long just so the message is relayed to the target market. Many people want things concise. In the past, if people loved taking and watching 40-minute home videos, these people vary quite differently from the current generation who can only tolerate watching clips for about 3-4 minutes (that’s at least how long music videos are). It is wise to keep the ad as simple as possible without sacrificing quality. It may not be necessary to have employed 50 characters at a time but it could be one self-created superhero along with a group of sidekicks so long as the same message is relayed. Too much effects, regardless of age group, will hate it. Also, too much talking on the video can sound like the company nagging at the consumers. A striking conversation between two characters is enough for any viewer. Understanding simplicity will hold the key.

 

  • Keep the viewers guessing   

A mystery at the end of a movie will always let our minds wonder–what could have happened? What happens next? When is the next sequel? While this cannot be expected of an ad (but some have storylines as part of the ad), it is good to add a bit of mystery at the end of the video. Playing this simple mystery and guessing game challenges the viewers to think up of possible scenarios and outcomes. This is fun for the general public. Of course, when leaving too much of a mystery, a follow-up video ad must be created.

 

  • Brand association

Any form of advertisement will leave a brand imprint on the minds of the consumers. This is very true for video. For example, upon seeing a man/woman on a white background wearing something simple like shirt and jeans, people would think immediately–Apple. If a shoe presents itself at the start of the presentation, viewers can broadly guess it is some brand of shoe, probably Nike. The introduction actually plays a great role in introducing the brand a company wants to build. The selection of the starting color alone could make or break an ad.

 

These tips should make video presentations and advertisements more effective than the rest. “Virality” was never mentioned here because it truly depends on the users whether or not they love watching the ad over and over again and be able to share it with friends. But that doesn’t mean one should not create an ad with that goal in mind. A true ad’s imprint on society is one where the people will never forget the brand.

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Developing Brand Through Display Advertising

Display Advertising 16/10/2012

            Display advertising involves showing off using an image, text, video, or combinations of the three and showcase the company’s product line and services but by this broad definition, anybody can create ads for any company which may not represent the brand they are trying to develop. Although ads are generally useful, in this case of misrepresentation, it may damage the branding process. Below are some tips in building the brand through display advertising:

 

  • Selecting and creating a model/mascot

In the past, having domineering models like those mascots featured in many fast food chains identifies their brand from the rest. Upon seeing similar characters of that type especially if they use animals and insects, consumers will most often recall the brand. The selection of animal, insect, or symbol of what represents the true nature of the company and its brand should take some time but time well spent for a company may have to live with the selection for the rest of the company’s life. Selection could be the first step for the second is to create a “friendlier” model either through artwork or computer-generated art that would look visually appealing. Once this is complete, it is time to show off this new model in any advertisement the company makes.

Certainly, the selection of models is not limited to local and international artists (even if they can be expensive to hire). A company can employ the services of talented artists who could represent the brand for them be it some clothing line or a new product line in power tools. This can be costly but its long-term effects are beneficial.

 

  • Improved focus

Because there can be so many people in a company, many have different ideas on how the company’s message should be advertised. This is not a problem for a smaller group but the principle remains the same–retaining focus on a product by not having other products present in the ad although it could re-appear at the end. Focus also includes maintaining a theme of sorts all throughout the lifespan of a company and its ads. Can the color scheme be kept preserved in ads as to easily identify the ad from the rest? For each ad that is created, a certain set of guidelines and rules must be followed to keep the mindset of the creators of the ads in place.

 

  • Plan and plan not only for the present but for the future

Preparation could be the most difficult part in the process of creating an ad as this is where ingenuity and uniqueness come from any ad. Planning must be done especially on the first ad as this will dictate what goes on to the next ad with all the good remarks from the previous one. It is good to keep a record on what the message the company wants to turn out to the public through its brand. Also, refuse to add “junk” onto ads. These include an excessive use of colored fonts and photos. Creating a collage is fine for school requirement but definitely not for advertisements. Keep it simple, stay on track, plan and focus on the goals of the company to develop a good brand.

 

  • Maintaining a team for advertising (and choosing the right ad)

For a larger group, there could be multiple people working on proposals and drafts for a good advertisement. Not only must the ads be of high quality, it must also pass company standards which should also show off the message of the company and the brand. Thus, it would be good to choose a team who has the most positive qualities along with innovative ads that closely and perfectly mimics the brand image.

 

  • Choosing the right place to deploy ads

After days, weeks, and months of developing a 30-second advertisement, it is necessary to keep in mind where these are placed as the brand depends on it. If the brand is more of groundbreaking computerized technology, it is safe to place ads online and may not be necessary to put them on TV. This is basic but a more complex yet far-reaching method is to publish the ads using some online service that publishes it for the company on various popular websites today. If users are on commonly visited sites by users all over the world, the company’s ads could be there. The financial requirement may strain younger companies but eventually this step will be taken by everyone.

 

  • Reviewing previous work; planning future work

No matter how bad or good the previous ads were, the next one must be consistent to the message of the product and brand. It is not some absolute rule that if the previous was bad, no one is allowed to improve it. Of course improvements can be made to better viewership but drastic changes without having some elements from the previous ads which were good can alienate a lot of people. Imagine Apple, who always use whitespace, suddenly clutter their ads with splats of random colors here and there. People will think it is some sort of art for Apple but many would initially perceive it to be not of Apple’s work when it could be their own. It is wise then to develop the brand by looking back reviewing what was good and bad and retaining those elements in the planning of future ones.

 

A brand name is like a company’s baby–a company must protect it for the baby is the future carrier of their name. The proper selection of a model, an increase focus, intensive planning, an amazing team, and even more planning are great steps to help establish one’s brand especially in the online space.

11 total views, 0 today

Tips for an Effective Copy

Content Marketing 20/09/2012

Copywriters are one of the creative peoples, like graphic designers. They spend their time crafting out sales copy, or copy, or slogans, or ad campaigns for business and advertising agencies.

These wordsmith usually are responsible to come up with slogans such as ‘Just Do It’ for Nike and ‘Nokia – Connecting People’ among others.

Copywriters are also content writers, crafting out unique and high-quality contents for Websites, blogs, and other sales letters.

Like designers, they are responsible to create content that are not only engaging and information, but they must also take care to allow visitors to take some action. Their words and reasoning skills gives a clear message, and they deliver with carefully chosen words.

Why Do You Need Copywriting Skills?
First, when you’re starting out your web project and need content for your site, you would not want to hire copywriters for no good reasons. Finding a convincing copywriter is pretty tough, and most of your projects are simply small to handle high-powered copywriter.

Second, there are few others who have in-depth knowledge as you do in your niche. No matter how convincing the copy there’s always some point missing in your copy.

What Can You Do with your Content’s Copy?
Well, either you could simply continue writing sub-standard copies for your Website and hope that it will do the trick. But here’s the problem. Even if you’re taking a chance writing low quality articles, you are losing out thousands of money on the table and losing conversions over to 2% and 3% to 1%.

That’s the reason why you must learn the copywriting skills yourself. Not only it will save you tons of money, but you will also ensure that you have mastered the art of copywriting that you can apply in other projects.

In this article, we’ll try to cover some basic copywriting skills that you can master in step-by-step method to help you improve your writing skills.

Ways to improve your CopyWriting Skills

Before you write copies or sales letters, it’s imperative to master the basic writing skills. No matter how persuasive you are verbally, if you cannot put those thoughts in a clear, logical, and grammatical correct order, your writing will be more off-putting than alluring.

So, mastering the basics is very important at first.

1. Learn Proper Grammar

No one will notice your grammar unless it is bad. That is why you need to learn proper grammar skills before starting to write copies of your Web or sales letters.

If you think that your writing is weak, chances are that you frequently make grammatical mistakes. For example, you might have subject-verb issues; or you use fragmented sentences often. Either way, these mistakes often repeats without you ever noticing them.

Like most things in life, you can utilize your time best by focusing on eliminating your weakness rather than learning the English course entirely.

2. Improve Your Writing Style

When it comes to writing compelling web content, in addition to mastering grammar rules, you also need to improve the style of your writing.

When your style is not strong, they’ll look disorganized, clunky, and weak and most readers stop paying attention to you. And when your style is flawless, people will be drawn to read your content as they are clear, concise, and engaging.

Style does not improve automatically, though. But its also something you can’t have. If you can improve your grammar, then you can improve your style.

You can buy style guides to start with, and you need to know these set of ten rules before you buy any books.

3. Writing for Your Target Audience

To write high quality content, you must learn to know and communicate with your audience. However, most content writers fail to connect while writing their copies. They write a general sounding copy that seems persuasive, but they don’t consider who they’ll be writing to.

But it’s a fatal thing mistake you should avoid.

If you fail to speak to your targeted audience, you will likely write content that is unsuccessful, no matter how persuasive they might sound.

That’s why we suggest you to go and find a number of online forums in your niche and go over user generated content to know what people are talking and thinking about a particular topic, products, or services.

You need to learn how they feel and put yourself in their shoes. Ask questions to find out more about their personalities traits, what they are looking for, their goals, and their motivation to buy the products. What is the particular benefit or feature that pops up often?

Writing effective Copy: In summary

Writing a convincing content could be a challenge at first, but it’s doable if you stick to some good practice of writing – improving your grammatical skills, style, and always speaking with your target audience.

If you do this correctly, soon you will find that more readers respond to your writing and you will start to see high conversion on your Web or sales copies.

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Tips on Creating Viral Content

Content Marketing 20/09/2012

Every Internet Marketers or Writer’s or Copywriter’s has one dream to get their writings go viral – distributed among large communities and seen by many people – on the web. In other words, they do have want to hit in the best-sellers list and make a name for themselves, or an exposure, or some extra cash.

Okay, you have followed how to write killer headers, and elegantly structure your article to make them more readable. And now, you want to reach out to wide audience on the web. Well, creating a viral content need not be an impossible task, but there is a lot of hard work and preparedness involved at first.

It not necessary that only web guru or someone who’s expert on something create content that are widely read. If you have skills and a dogged determination to not easily give into and really find out viral content works, sure in few months times, you’ll be producing content that goes viral.

What Makes a Content Go Viral

Is there a magical formula to make a viral content? Well, to put it bluntly, there aren’t. But you can take few measures you can take.

Let’s look at few strategies that you use to convert a average article into something that would be widely written. But before that, let’s understand what makes a content go viral, how it works, and how it’s spread.

1. Think about the Content

First, think about your content itself. Is your content is readable, engaging, and resonating with them? Is your content so obvious, but not noticed by most of the people out there?

Does your content offer some new perception or insights to the same issue in different way? Is it shocking? Does it ignite curiosity?

If you are really honest with yourself, you know why the article is important in the first place. Go ahead and cover the story on that new angle. Make it personal, and yours. Remember, no one else can come to the same conclusion as yours, as we’re all individual human beings and we see things differently. Just trust on your skills and dogged-determination and stick to it, no matter what.

Remember, think about new perception, new angle, originality, and trust your skill.

2. Who’s Your Target Audience

Writing a compelling content is just the tip of the ice berg; fitting the content is a different story.

Why? Because you cannot effectively hit a blind target or anything you don’t see. You need a clear target. You need to connect with that person, that awesome person that requires the key to all the answers you’re holding onto. They need to be a real person, with real life problems, dilemma, and interest in the topic your writing.

After all, even if you write an amazing content, but you fail to define a target audience, guess what, no-one is going to able to connect and not read your content.

After you have known the important, the question remains, how.

How do you identify your target audience? For this, most bloggers, writers, and even Internet Marketers create an ‘avatar’ – a personal image of their target audience and write for them. They identify them by giving them their name, physical attributes, mental abilities, personality traits, and everything else. They create a personality; an ‘avatar’ and they go and write for them.
Read the article on how to research your target audience and how to reach your target market online to gain more insight on market reasearch.

Once you’ve have the content and the target audience identified, then you have to use proper tools and visit sites that can easily help share them on the web, quickly and effectively.

3. Where Can Your Share Your Content?

You can share your content through different media – blog posts, audio, or video files. You can advertise on Facebook, promote on Twitter, Digg and LinkedIn among others.

The more targeted friends or connection you have, the more chances of getting your articles viral.

Video Marketing
Another way to quickly make a content go viral is to create a short video, usually two to three minutes long, and post them on free video sharing sites such as YouTube, and Vimeo.

While posting those videos, you need to make sure you insert keywords and brief description that are targeted and relevant to your audience. Search engines displays video according the to your target audience.

Viral content – Is it really infectious?

Writing a well structured content that delivers the message clearly and perfecting each elements of an article such as crafting a killer headline is just one side of the coin. You need to be able to market and promote it to assist you in making your website go viral and there are various ways to achive it as discussed above. There’s a lot of hardwork involved in order to create a content that has the potential to go viral.

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5 Tips on how to write an effective Headline

Content Marketing 20/09/2012

‘What’s in the headlines? What’s in the news today?’, we always seem to ask each other. Every one’s eager to know what is happening around nationally and internationally. The obvious place we seem to go is skimming the pages of a local newspaper we can get out hands on. There in big bold letters screams the word, ‘The Shocking Truth of Tiger Woods’, ‘Six facts that the Government of the Nation keeping us from’, ‘Infamous Authors’. All these headlines stand out from the crowd because of the most important message they tend to speak about the article.

If you’re a avid newspaper reader, or a thriller novel reader like me, then, chances are you’ll know what an effective headlines will do to your articles, stories. For those who haven’t bothered to notice this important piece of information – especially if you’re considering writing effective articles – then you must train yourself to craft great headline that quickly gets the attention of people.

Speaking of attention, people have very low attention span, as they are in a rush to head to their office and go over the pile of work laid out on their desk. Effective headlines do make people stop and notice.

1. Effectively summarize the main point of the article in a title, but make it interesting as well

People don’t go over every article they come across. Why? Most people are in a hurry and they just want to get know the summary of what the whole article is all about. Their eyes are roving around the whole page, just to get the main stories on their head. And a headline that summarizes the article gets most of the attention, quickly and subtlety. For example, ‘Bus falls of highway, 28 dead’ seems to summarize the main point of the whole article that’s been written.

2. Describe the Title with Adjective

A plain header can be turned into something catchy and interesting if we use those using adjectives. For example, ‘Most Trendiest Holiday Destinations in Seattle’ is catchier than ‘Holiday Destinations in Seattle’.

The reason why the use of adjectives attracts readers is that they are more welcoming – words like shocking, best, worst, top, trendiest, least appealing, and most revealing and so on.

3. Make the title stand out from the rest

Make your articles stand out by adding a little bit of personal touches to what’s already been out there. For example, we have probably read the same old boring titles such as, ‘How to Write an Article’ thousands of time. People have become smarter these days, and no longer were the days when we will get allured by such a obvious headers. Instead, the same title could be modified and changed to ‘How to Write an Article the Age Old Ways’ seems more promising to get more views.

4. List Benefits that Tends to Solve People problem

People usually read online articles because most of them are looking for something – a solution for their problems, how to fix things, learning to read and write, and everything. They have a goal in their mind and they are looking for ways to do that. And as a result, articles that provide a solution to their problems will be viewed more.

For example, ‘Crafting Content to Increase Subscribers’ are more catchy than ‘How to Write Content’ because not only it stands out from the crowd, but they also list a benefit to the reader. They’ll at once know what they’ll be reading and hope to get.

5. Put Main Keywords and Ideas in the Title

Another to get more people to read your article is to write headers with keywords stuffed into it. Keywords are main points that people are generally looking for. For example, ’Intriguing Toys and Games Reviews’ is more specific and keyword stuffed as opposed to ‘Toys and Games’ titles. The title in the former is more keyword rich as the later, hence they have more hits when people will be searching for ‘reviews’ or ‘best’ toys and games products online.

Make sure that stuffing keyword, do not add more than two main keywords. You can add prefix and suffix adjectives to make the header more specific as well as relevant to different users.

Writing catchy Headlines and Titles: In summary

Remember, when it comes to building readership, writing effective headers are important. How do you do that? Well, writing an intriguing header is an art itself, and only can be mastered by regular practice. It’s not an over-night sensation, and requires deliberate practice and learning few patterns before seeing the signs that your headers get results.

No matter where you are, it’s always good idea to start from the beginning. Write simple headers and turn them into something beautiful using adjectives, stating amazing and shocking facts, and summarizing the whole articles.

Just make a habit of writing at-least a header a day and continue doing that. Be direct but choose your words carefully, after all you’re inviting people to read them, not make them throw it away after they read your title. Be genuine, try to help people by informing them, and make them feel comfortable, and you’ll be on your way of writing clear, elegant, and intriguing headlines that will increase your subscribers.

31 total views, 0 today

How to write an effective article for each web page

Content Marketing 16/09/2012

There are so many things being researched on the internet and writers from all over the world compose articles that would entice their readers into reading them. However, because almost anyone with internet access can write about anything, it makes it challenging to look for articles that are really needed. Thus, people have developed writing techniques that uses search engine optimization (SEO) tricks that closely ensures their articles appear on search engine giants like Google. Although it can be beneficial to the company or blogger to use SEO tools, several basics have to be established. Below are some tips on how to truly write an effective post/article:

Basic Components of a Good Article

Some writers are more concerned with complying with the SEO requirements of the article without actually writing something that is useful for their readers. The first step is to get the article right by maintaining the basic three parts in writing anything:

  1.  Introduction
  2. Body
  3. Conclusion

Without these three present, readers would be confused upon reading the article as it may have a lot of fillers or just experience a scramble of ideas in which they may not be able to organize themselves without the writers’ help.

In the introduction, the writer can employ various figurative languages like metaphors. This part is quite important as this ‘catches’ the readers to continue reading. The body contains all the information that is to be conveyed to the readers. Lastly, an article isn’t complete without some sort of conclusion where everything that has been written in the body is concluded.

Writing articles correctly for the first time

Below are the things you need to consider when writing the contents of each of article:

Length
What use is an article if it is too short of a read? It must be at least 300 words in length although having less is okay provided it falls under references.

Relevance is key
Rambling thoughts is well and good for a personal blog but for a post to be effective to its readers, it must be relevant to what the topic is about. For example, writing about gardening would include thoughts on compost, types of soil, the plants that are easier to grow for the novice, and even the kind of paint to be used on containers for decorating flowers. By sticking to the topic at hand, the readers would not realize until they are done reading that the article was worth the read.

In addition, it would be wise to repeat the main topic a few times in an article. Writing an effective post and article can also rely on how often the main subject is repeated because the reader might forget what about he/she is reading.

Technical content
A writer with some form of technical experience should engage themselves into writing methodically with detail step-by-step instructions or how-to’s. Readers who are into the subject they are reading would absolutely love it if they found a post/article that involved some DIY steps they can do at home. Having results would be a big plus on the overall content.

Having a photo or two
The reality is people disengage themselves from reading something that is just filled with a lot of words. Spice up articles by adding photos of the outputs on the project that was being worked on or a simple photo that is relevant and can explain the topic.

Being unique
This is fairly easy to say but difficult to do. For one, writing something unique may involve a writing style that may be unfamiliar to readers. If they feel alienated by the way it’s written, they’ll stop reading. Another is the thought that others may have written about the topic being written so why write about it? This isn’t true as no one has the exact same article written by another person unless it’s plagiarized. The other person may have strayed away from the topic while the other sticks close to it. Being unique also includes adding personal content like life experiences and photos taken by the writer himself. Adding that personal touch tells the reader the person who wrote the article is also human.

Review from other people
The ultimate method of determining whether or not an article is well written and effective is to have other people read it before it gets published. These people can be the copyeditor, peers, teachers, and most especially the target audience. Reviewing the article personally should already be ‘automatic’ for the writer after he finishes and preferably have it read by others to gauge effectiveness.

Whether it’s for a personal blog, a product review, a how-to guide, or just for fun writing, readers would appreciate organization the most in an article with that clarity of thought and ease of transmission of information without all the unexplained jargon. Writing and posting effective posts and articles online are responsibilities of the writer as to not waste the readers’ time. Nobody wants to read something that’s utterly useless to them. Instead, by writing an effective post, the writer not only is successful in conveying his message to his readers but also the readers can not only be informed but also enjoy what they’re reading. Those are what make a post effective.

18 total views, 0 today

Ways of promoting a website offline

Stage 4: Website Promotion 30/08/2012

The use of internet as a tool for marketing has increased in the recent years and making a website has become one of the most beneficial form of promoting a product or service. They can help in providing the customer with the information of your company and they can also allow the user to know the activities you participate in and the information related to the product you are selling. They can see all the products that are being offered by your company and can make purchases according to it.

There is always a need to promote the site so that your company can be recognizable and can attract the traffic with the chance of selling your product or services to the customers. The number of visitors can give you an idea on what pages or promotions are attracting the traffic.

Offline Marketing Strategies

There are many ways to promote the website this does not necessarily mean that it can be only promoted online rather it can also be promoted in the real world. Actually this can be quite beneficial in attracting the customers to your site.
There are many ways to promote the website offline some of the most effective ways are given below:

  1. Introduce your site to family and friends: It is vital that your family and friends know about your site so that they can join you and can motivate their colleagues and friends to join your site. This list is limitless and you will be attracting a lot of traffic with the use of this simple technique.
  2. Send Email: Sending Emails is an important technique since the emails can attract the consumers to come to your site.
  3. Making Business cards: Business cards are one of the most effective ways of promoting your site offline and every business should have a business card. They are cheaper to make and they provide the customer with the ways of contacting you and also they can be tempted to ask about the products that your company makes hence making sales to the customers. You can also design a unique and creative business card that can relate to your business.
  4. Market with the other brands: You can co market with other businesses which can give you access to wider audience of both the businesses. This is easier as it can benefit both the business. The business materials and the mails send to people can have name of both of the companies. There can be also the placement of business cards in the partner’s stores.
  5. Branded stationery: Branding is an important and the address of your website should be on all the stationary that you use like the pens, envelopes, letterheads ,business forms , cards, any promotional pamphlets or any flyover that you distribute to the public.
  6. Making bookmarks: Making unique bookmarks are also an easy way to promote your website. This way whenever the person looks at the tag he can see the address of your website.
  7. Public speaking: You should have excellent communication skills so that you can talk to a crowd and if you think you do not have it then hire someone who can speak to an audience on behalf of your company.
  8. Interact with the customers: You can introduce different contests and can offer them gifts or discounts when they participate in your company’s offers or promotions. This can include the Customer of week and other similar discounts.
  9. Advertise on radio and print adds: The advertisement on the radio is very easy since the people listen to the radio while driving so have advertisements on radio can also attract people to your website.
  10. Putting up billboards: Bill boards and advertisement on the vehicles can also be done for the promotion of the website.
  11. Advertisement on local cable channels: You can also advertise on the local cable channels to attract the customers and to promote the website.
  12. Yellow pages: Placing an ad on the yellow page can also work wonders for your website.
  13. Press releases and interviews on radio and local channels.
  14. Placing ads on the local newspapers and the business directories.
  15. Sponsoring in the community fairs or any other such type of activities
  16. You can also promote by placing web address on the community help messages boards.
  17. You can hang up the posters with your website address on the stores as well.
  18. You can also put them on the beach umbrellas
  19. The sticker can also be put on the vending machines.

Is offline marketing worth the effort for promoting a site?

Offline marketing is similar in nature to any other marketing in building a larger customer base. In order to limit your advertising costs, niche targeted marketing strategy can be employed. This will avoid attracting the wrong visitors to your site. It is proven to be an effective method of advertising as it narrows down your market to specific group. Now that’s money well spent if done in the right way.

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101 + ways to increase website traffic

Stage 4: Website Promotion 29/08/2012

The website traffic increment is one of the most important things for the webmaster master and the company alike. The increasing of traffic on the website can have many advantages which includes the growth of your website and our company and the higher rankings in the search engine results.
There are various occasions in which the number of visitors on the site need to be increased which may be any new promotion the company is putting up or to test the accuracy and the analysis of the traffic on the various landing pages of the site or any of the other features that are incorporated in the site. This tests the pages that are working and attracting traffic and the pages which need attention.
The 100 ways which can be used to increase the website traffic are given below:

Creating quality content on your own website

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High quality content should be placed on the site and one of the most easiest way to have the quality content is to update your site once a week, it could also be done twice a week which helps build up the quality of content.
Writing a controversial article
You can guide the people on topics
Interviewing celebrities is a good approach
Write on the current trends or seasons
Quizzes can be made to fascinate the visitors
Releasing an eBook
Release cheat sheets
Make web design resources
Ranking of websites will be a good source of achieving the web traffic
Publishing cartoons which give funny messages helps curb traffic too.

Blogging

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You can create many different Micro blogging accounts you can also have more than 1 Twitter account.
Adding a separate blog with your site
You can also write as guest posting on the other blogs
You can also write blog competitions in which the other authors can write about a specific topic this way you can be linked to many people.
Linking to other bloggers on the net is an easy way to increase the traffic.

Content sharing programs

The content sharing programs are necessary if you are promoting any product or service on your website. You can share the content through any Micro blogging software that you use. The high quality should be used when you are using the Micro Blogging websites.
You can also publish a RSS feed that will let the visitors subscribe to your site for any update on the website.
You can join the Feedburner account which will give all the statistics of the subscribers you have.
You can also subscribe people by the email subscriptions by sending email to the subscribers.
Another way is to make email newsletter
Put the breaking stories on your page which is sure to attract the masses of the people.

Use of Social Media

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The Social Media profile can be used on Google Plus, Linkedin and Facebook. The quality and the frequency of these networks are amazing and they provide with the results more accurately than the Micro blogging. They are able to attract the traffic.

Use of discussions and forums

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You can participate on the community discussions on the Facebook, Twitter or any other social website and can attract a wide audience of people. The Linkedin is a good choice while the Google plus is rather a professional approach but the Facebook is the easiest way to attract the web traffic to the site.
• You can participate in the discussions being held also commenting on the discussion of a similar brand or product can help you attract the targeted audience and the potential customers, it is also recommended that you post the URL of your website while commenting on the posts or discussion.
• Try to reach the front page of Digg
• You can also use Reddit for submitting the content
• You can add the social bookmarking sites to your blog
• Niche social bookmarking sites
• Make profile on social networks
• Employ the Facebook as a primary promotion of site
• Make fan pages
• Add the Facebook widget
• Make Twitter account
• Find new niche social networks
• Answer the questions that are on the Yahoo! Answers.
• Participate in community functions
• Add a forum to your site
• Answer the questions on LinkedIn
• Exchange the links

Videos can help you

• You can make videos.
• You can develop the video for the promotion of the site. The Camtasia software can be used along with Power point to make the videos that can be embedded in your website. It is economical to use.
• Make videos interesting which will be an amazing thing for the visitors.
Make videos of the screen which gives you good procedures on the website
• Link your videos to different sites
• You can also launch podcast
• Release the recorded interviews

Advertising

o Pay per click advertising:
o The pay per click programs is the easy solution for testing the keywords used I the site and the accuracy of the landing pages in the site it also takes you know the traffic that is being attracted due to it.
o There are many different softwares available like Facebook, Adwords which provide you with the Pay per Click Campaign.
o Linking in your pages, this technique can help the customers to navigate through the entire website
o Make backlinks
o Continuously update keywords
o Optimize title tags
o Use quality images on website to attract the web traffic.
o Make a good HTML sitemap
o Translate in other languages
o Join the online forums
o Make business cards. Unique cards can achieve the web traffic.
o Advertise on the vehicles
o Advertise on the radio which is best when you drive the car
o Brand the stationery with your website address
o Co-market with other businesses which can help to attract the audience
o Advertise on local cable TV channels
o Place billboard in the streets or important places
o Place your ad on the signage in the lawn
o Submit your sit to the various web directories
o Make press releases
o Include your name in local business directories
o Place ads in free newspapers
o Make stickers that can be stick to any door or window
o Tell your friends and family of the website which is a good way
o Use ad swaps
o Advertise on Facebook
o Make some T-shits with the URL
o StumbleUpon ads can also be used
o Include the site URL to email signature

Contests and promotionalfts

• The traffic and the free gifts are one of the most important attractions for the web traffic to come to your site. The important thing is to know what the customer values and what he would be interested in while he visits your website. It provides you with good web traffic and the chance of interacting with the visitor of site by giving the gifts.
• Arrange a comment contest
• Arrange a review contest
• Interact by voting contests

Purchase Facebook Likes and Google+ clicks

• The buying of the paid traffic to your site can have many benefits. This paid traffic can bring many of the real customers to the site and can also help in increasing the rankings on the search engine that helps in bringing the additional traffic to your website.
• The clicks can also be purchased on the Google + clicks but it is not recommended to purchase it since the results are not good on the Google searches.
• Use Google Adwords.
• Purchase sponsor reviews

YouTube views and others

• This is same as in the purchasing of Facebook likes. There are similar advantages and disadvantages associated with this. If you purchase the YouTube likes this up burst of popularity is enough to bring the video on the screens of the audience which will see your video and comment on it as well. Remember to put your URL there so that the web traffic can be directed to your website.
• Customize 404 error page
• Create “Hub”on HubPages
• Reddit sponsored links
• You can submit content to article directories
• Submit blog to blog directories
• Search for quality content
• Highlight your main content
• Search for website on different browsers
• Speed loading of website
• Get good hosting plan
• Make an iPhone app of website
• Create the android app

Conclusion
All of these methods described in this article can be used to increase the web traffic but these methods have to be used in a moderation since the potential customer or the visitor on your page can become bored by this much promotion of your website. It should be done in such an order that the visitors have always a new thing to look to and never become bored by it.

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How to Advertise Your Website on Google

Search Engine Marketing 23/08/2012

There are many methods to market or advertise your website on Google. Most of the people are using various techniques to advertise their websites on the Google in order to have their website on the first page on search results or any Google products.

Targeted Google Traffic

Not all traffic counts. Bringing the right or targeted traffic to your website is. If you are running a website regarding products and you are not getting the right type of traffic on your website then you are not successful. So, the basic aim is to bring the targeted or specific traffic on your website. There are internet marketing tools that can help you in finding the right traffic and help you in brining that targeted traffic on your website. Google adwords is the awesome advertising service that can bring right people on your website, blog or affiliate marketing offers.

Google loves Fresh & Updated Content

The first thing you need to do is to create fresh content on a regular basis. Secondly, it is important that you update contents that are no longer relevant. These two techniques had been used by most website owners. In fact, it is the easiest way to advertise your website on Google. Relevant content will attract the right people to your website. However, it is important that you implement the right strategies on how to write content for the web effectively in order to gain the right traffic to your site.

Google Adwords

It is very much interesting to note that Google is the largest search engine on the internet. Almost Google receive 3 billion inquiries per day. The number of inquiries is increasing day by day. There is a dramatic increase in the inquiries.
Google gas launched Google adwords to target the required community or traffic for the specific business. To use this service, you just need to create a short text advertisement. This advertisement will be placed by Google on various places on the internet. When the visitor or researcher clicks a specific link or advertisement, Google will take the visitor to your product or website.

How to advertise on Google Adwords

To use the advertising service of Google adwords, you need to need to open Google adwords service account. For this purpose, you can type Google adwords in the search bar. Search engine will take you to the page where you can sign up for free. There you need to open the free account. After that go to settings menu, here you need to specify the target people or community. You need to mention the countries that you want to target. Also mention the desired language.
Try to avoid the countries in which you do not want to sale your product. This will waste your money and time. At the end, you need to make the text ad and after that tell how much you are going to pay for a single click on your advertisement.

Google Place

Google place will help you in placing your advertisement on the required and the correct places. This will also help you in finding the targeted traffic or community for your website. Finding the targeted community or right traffic will be very much important. This is because it will save your money and time. People who are not interested in your product if visit your website, you will not get any benefit from that. So try to avoid targeting the people that will not be beneficial for you.

Don’t Underestimate Google +: Google’s Social Networking Site

Google + is google’s match for Facebook. We discussed on a previous article the importance of social network and the need to promote your website on Facebook as it will bring in potential visitors to your site. Social networking platform are getting popular these days and you can use Google+ platform to promote your website. There are number of people that are joining Google + for various networking reasons. Utilising this platform may also help you in targeting the right visitors, community or country for your website.

Conclusion
At the end, we can say that advertising a website on Google is not a difficult job. If you are thinking to advertise your website on Google then it will be proved very much beneficial for you. By using Google advertising techniques, you cannot only target the required community but you can also improve the ranking of your website and hence traffic to your website will be increased to several extents. Hence it is useless to wait, use the Google advertising services and get your website advertised on Google.

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How to Promote on Twitter To Attract Potential Customers

Social Media Marketing 19/08/2012

Social media websites are one of the most heavily visited websites globally and Twitter is the second most followed social media website in the world just behind Facebook. For this reason, many had started to promote their personal or business websites on twitter. Would you like to be left behind?

The introduction of the promoted tweets in Twitter has made it a good place for marketing.
This application in Twitter has been developed as the pay per click feature which is good because you only have to pay if a potential customer clicks on the ad. The biggest thing to remember is that when you create a page for your website on the social networking site you should regularly visit it and you should update it with news. This will make the user see more tweets from your end keeping your tweet appear on his page increasing in fan following. It is to be kept in mind that the prime objective is to attract the visitors to your website.

Promoted tweets
Promoted tweets are the advertisements that when you participate in a carnival or a fair you are one of the sponsors you can attach yourself to that particular list of people or the page which promotes the carnival or fair. By attaching yourself to the event you can select a number of tweets which you can display during the promotion of the event. While this promotion this tweet will display at the top of the search results since it is a promoted tweet. This tweet is always displayed whenever a user types the name of the event. It is sponsored and may attract the potential customer needed to visit its page.

Grabbing attention of users through tweets
Creating the twitter account for the following of the users should clearly be thought because there is a limitation of 140 words. The twitter can be used to grab the attention of the people by the tweets helping with the interesting offers free give away and the discounts on the products. Interesting words and phrases can also be used to grab the attention of the users.
The potential customer can be guided to the site by the interesting words which can be attractive. The attention of the users can also be grabbed by following the brands and the companies that have similar products and this way people who follow them can view your products and follow you as well. The greater number of people you follow on Twitter there will be a larger chance that you may be able to attract a larger number of people to your product. It should also be kept in mind that there should be no over tweeting of your product as this makes it very boring for the followers.

How to attract people to your Business through Twitter:
The Twitter can be used to attract the customers or the potential customers to your website. There are a few steps that should be followed while attracting the customers:

  • Making campaign –A campaign should be carefully thought out because the correct use of phrases can make it easier to attract a following that is interested in your product. This should be done wisely in sponsoring an event or collaborating with an organization in an endeavor that matches with the slogan of your company.
  • Selecting keywords – The keywords should be carefully selected since Twitter allows only 140 words to tweet so the correct words or phrases should be used. Similar words that can be used by the users also have to be included so that your website is displayed on the top.
  • Select existing campaign slogans – Catchy slogans should be chosen so that the user can know the information of your company and can be attracted to your website. Links should also be given to your website in the slogans.
  • Pay per click – This feature makes it easier to advertise since you only have to pay if a potential customer visits your page.

CONCLUSION
Since, 500 million are on the Twitter so it is very possible that you find the potential customers by the use of correct keywords and the other techniques mentioned above.

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How to Promote Your Site on Facebook

Social Media Marketing 19/08/2012

The active users of Facebook worldwide are nearing a billion. It is the second most visited website in the United States, Canada and United Kingdom among others. If you promote on facebook, your website and/or business has the potential to be seen by a large amount of people via facebook users wall.

Facebook is a social network that has an inherent site promoting features that will enable you to advertise your product to millions of users. The Steps to do it is discussed below:

1. Create a Profile
In order to promote on facebook, you need to create a profile on Facebook from which you can enter in the site. Once you have created a profile then you might want to see how the companies or organizations selling the same products are promoting their website and how many Likes they are getting. A good approach would be to note and write down the various successful techniques employed by these companies for attracting the customers and the types of advertisement they use or slogans they employ to promote their product.

2. Create A Page
Creating a page for your product or company is the next step to take. There are various steps involved in creating a page which are given as under:

  • Pages -The next step will be to select the Pages option displayed on the top right corner of the screen. This option lets you view all the pages that are in the data base of Facebook.
  • Overview – The overview option lets you to view all the pages that are already created giving you an insight on how to make and manage your page. These are like sample pages that guide you to how to make one of the finest pages on the Facebook.
  • Create page -The Create page option lets you create a page on Facebook for your company or organization. Clicking on this you will be directed to a page where you will be able to create a Page for your company.
  • Choose business type -The next step will be to specify the type of business for which you intend to create a page for. Facebook provides a list of categories for which you can make a page. If your companies do not fall in this category you can also specify a new category.
  •  Name of page -Select the name of the page, this can be the name of the company or organization, it can also be the name of a product.

3. Attract Other Users to Visit Your Facebook Page
Attracting people is a big issue and it is important that you know all the techniques that can help you attract the people to your site.

  • Invite from your friend lists – The friends from our Facebook profile can be a big help in this case. If you have sorted and made different lists of people like close acquaintance, relatives or colleagues or if you have sorted them out like the architects or software professionals then you can select the list and send it to them rather than sending individual invites.
  • Use of Facebook search -Searching for a specific category related to your product on the Search bar on the top and by looking at the option “:Posts by everyone” you can see conversion of people not in your friends lists and you can easily find out people in your area in search of your product and offer them services.
  • Use Facebook Social Ad – These are the actions that your friends have taken like “Noah is now a fan of Toby’s Café would you like to become one?”
  • Facebook fan page twitter app – Adding the bit.ly to every Facebook post you make there will be an update on your Twitter account which directs the traffic to your main site.
  • Facebook fan box Widget – The Facebook fan box widget is a fun way to introduced a like box telling the amount of people you have following and can encourage other to like your page as well.

Conclusion
Should you promote your site in facebook? The answer is yes. Used appropriately and targeted wisely, facebook can help you gain new visitors and acquire potential customers. It is also a platform that gives you the opportunity to directly communicate with your target market.

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