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Is Business Blogging Part of YOUR Marketing Plan

Why Business Blogging Should Be Part of Your Marketing Plan

Marketing plans come in all shapes and sizes. The right marketing plan for your business depends on many different factors. But one thing all businesses have in common is that they can benefit a great deal from business blogging.

Blogging is a tactic used in content marketing. When you write a blog, you publish a steady stream of fresh content. This content draws traffic to your site and earns new readers, while also building a relationship with the readers you have.

1. Business Blogging Is Simple but Effective

Many small businesses don’t want to blog because it’s ‘writing’ and you’re not a ‘writer.’ But blogging is extremely simple. This is why it makes a perfect element in an online marketing plan.

Blog posts can be as short as 300 words or even less, but generally I recommend going for 500 words if you can. They can include videos images, slide shows, and infographics. Each post can cover one simple topic and the writing doesn’t have to be magazine-grade. Write in a conversational tone like you’re talking to a friend and proofread so that there aren’t any grammar or spelling mistakes.

The way to blog headache-free is to set aside a little time each week to write and post. Carve out an hour or so to write something and post it. If you have a team member who can write well, delegate the task to them.

2. How to Get Ideas — LISTEN

The other trouble many people have when they start blogging is where to get ideas. Here are some simple places to get ideas for your blog posts:

  • Listen to what people are asking
  • Answer questions customers often ask
  • Teach readers how to do something simple step by step
  • Discuss news, current events or hot topics on other blogs
  • Answer questions from forums, Q&A sites like Yahoo Answers, social media or blog comments
  • Start by looking at popular keywords and write blog posts around them.

Keep an idea file. Spend some time brainstorming topics at first and then add to it whenever you get an idea. Whenever you need an idea, refer to this file and start writing.

3. Getting Your Idea onto “Paper”

There are many ways to share your idea on your blog.  Writing is of course the first.  Keep it simple. Create an outline of your major points. Write one paragraph about each point, add a few bullet points where appropriate and then add your intro and exit.

You can also create a video of your idea. Especially good for HOW TO type posts.  Embed the video right on your site. Creating a video can be simple. You can do a “talking head” video — you talking into the camera, or a simple screen capture video of you showing people HOW TO do something; or a screen capture of a slide show.  There are many possibilities.

Don’t let yourself get bogged down with the writing.  It is simpler than you think.

4. Working a Blog into Your Marketing Plan

Decide what topics your blog will cover and at what frequency you’ll write and post. If you add a blog to your website, you’ll boost your site’s SEO and give visitors more to do there. You can also use your blog’s analytics and its reader comments to learn more about your target market and its tastes.

5. You Can Also Add a Call to Action

You can offer more information via an e-book or video series or some other more extensive piece of content.  Then you have the opportunity to further engage with the visitor and share more valuable information.

Take my 5 Day Crash Course on Content Marketing for Your Business!




Donna Price is a speaker, trainer, author and business and marketing strategist. She founded her company, Compass Rose Consulting in 2003 after a 20+ year career in non-profit management and administration. Donna’s history is impressive. She goes beyond the world of work as an adventurer and brings bold living lessons to each of her presentations. Donna has a unique inspirational story – of cycling across the country and how you take wild ideas and make them happen. She is the author of several books including; Yes! Marketing Works, Launching Your Dreams and Employee Coaching. Donna Price works with business leaders, teams and individuals to get them moving, improve their bottom line results through effective strategy, leadership, marketing and communication.

Why Business Blogging

Why Business Blogging Should Be Part of Your Marketing Plan??

There are some really good reasons to include business blogging in your marketing plan. It remains an important strategy that should not be ignored or neglected.business blogging

Marketing plans come in all shapes and sizes. The right marketing plan for your business depends on many different factors. But one thing all businesses have in common is that they can benefit a great deal from blogging.

Blogging is a tactic used in content marketing. When you write a blog, you publish a steady stream of fresh content. This content draws traffic to your site and earns new readers, while also building a relationship with the readers you have.

Business Blogging Is Simple but Effective

Many small businesses don’t want to blog because it’s ‘writing’ and you’re not a ‘writer.’ But blogging is extremely simple. This is why it makes a perfect element in an online marketing plan.

Blog posts can be as short as 300 words or even less, but generally I recommend 400 words. They can include videos and images. Each post can cover one simple topic and the writing doesn’t have to be magazine-grade. Write in a conversational tone like you’re talking to a friend and proofread so that there aren’t any grammar or spelling mistakes. The thing is that you ARE an expert in your field. You have knowledge and expertise that you can share.

The way to blog headache-free is to set aside a little time each week to write and post. Carve out an hour or so to write something and post it. If you have a team member who can write well, delegate the task to them.

How to Get Ideas for Business Blogging

The other trouble many people have when they start blogging is where to get ideas. Here are some simple places to get ideas for your blog posts:

 Answer questions customers often ask
 Teach readers how to do something simple step by step
 Discuss news, current events or hot topics on other blogs
 Answer questions from forums, Q&A sites like Yahoo Answers, social media or blog comments
 Start by looking at popular keywords and write blog posts around them.

Keep an idea file. Spend some time brainstorming topics at first and then add to it whenever you get an idea. Whenever you need an idea, refer to this file and start writing.

Working a Business Blog into Your Marketing Plan

Decide what topics your blog will cover and at what frequency you’ll write and post. If you add a blog to your website, you’ll boost your site’s SEO and give visitors more to do there. You can also use your blog’s analytics and its reader comments to learn more about your target market and its tastes.

Blogging can become the HUB of your marketing plan, bringing traffic back to your website.

Think about it.  If you have questions?? Reach out!!

Donna Price is a speaker, trainer, author and business and marketing strategist. She founded her company, Compass Rose Consulting in 2003 after a 20+ year career in non-profit management and administration. Donna’s history is impressive. She goes beyond the world of work as an adventurer and brings bold living lessons to each of her presentations. Donna has a unique inspirational story – of cycling across the country and how you take wild ideas and make them happen. She is the author of several books including; Yes! Marketing Works, Launching Your Dreams and Employee Coaching. Donna Price works with business leaders, teams and individuals to get them moving, improve their bottom line results through effective strategy, leadership, marketing and communication.

How To Write A Blog Post

The Anatomy of a Good Blog Post

Blogging is a key element in marketing, it is the HUB.

When you create a blog you can show case YOU. But you can also syndicate your content to other platforms such as your social media platforms: LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Tumblr etc. Knowing HOW to write a blog post is key.

How to write a great blog post

Many business owners fear blogging. You don’t need to because you have a lot to say! Your knowledge and expertise is what you blog about.

Follow the blog post guide step by step to put together your first blog post and get your blog started.

Headline— attention grabbing– here is where you INTERRUPT. You need to get your readers attention.

Picture— you need to have a picture. People are more likely to read your blog and your syndicated posts if you have a picture. A great resource for pictures is: Dollar Photo Club You need to be sure that you can legally use the picture that you choose.

Intrigue— why do they want to spend time with you reading your post. Will they get what they need from it?

Compelling Content— this is where you get into the meat of the topic! There are different styles of blog posts or articles. Most folks will not spend a great deal of time reading a long rambling blog post.

Wrap Up and Call to Action— no you’re not in writing class but a quick wrap up is a good idea. It can wrap or be a brief summary up paragraph. It is also great to have a call to action at the end. The call to action is not a sales pitch. Mix it up– download my special report, leave your comments below, ask a question, schedule a laser coaching session, get my tips on XYZ …

Engage— reply to all comments both on your blog and social media. Thank people for commenting, answer questions etc. Add plugins to your blog that improve your social engagement– allow people to share your content, add related posts etc. Plugins can add all sorts of functionality to your blog.

It is where you send people back to from your social media to get more info or to read the entire blog article. Your blog is where the real meat is. You can share YOU, your expertise and your personality right there on your blog.

Not sure how to get going: Schedule a 10 minute laser coaching session to review and I will give you the quick start challenge to get you going!!

www.MeetWithDonna.com

Donna Price is a speaker, trainer, author and business and marketing strategist. She founded her company, Compass Rose Consulting in 2003 after a 20+ year career in non-profit management and administration. Donna’s history is impressive. She goes beyond the world of work as an adventurer and brings bold living lessons to each of her presentations. Donna has a unique inspirational story – of cycling across the country and how you take wild ideas and make them happen. She is the author of several books including; Yes! Marketing Works, Launching Your Dreams and Employee Coaching. Donna Price works with business leaders, teams and individuals to get them moving, improve their bottom line results through effective strategy, leadership, marketing and communication.

Blogging Lab: Learn HOW to Blog

Five Week Blogging Lab

The Blogging Lab is a hands on learning lab to get your blog site up and running.  If you have always wanted a blog but didn’t know how to get it going, this lab will show you step by step.

Or perhaps you are thinking of transitioning your website to a blog — then we will show you how to do that.

This five week blogging lab will take you by the hand and give you a demonstration, step by step of full process of setting up a Word Press Blog, installed on YOUR domain.  And then you will have access to the recordings.  Some labs will include a workbook, review book or e-book.

December 1st 7:00 PM – 8:00 PM: Lab # 1:  Installing WordPress onto Your Domain:  IN this session we will review HOW to install Word Press and get it set up and running.  We will look at themes and the look and feel of the site.  There are a wealth of themes available for your blog and ways to get it looking just like you want.

December 8th and 22nd: 7:00 PM- 8:00 PM: Lab # 2 & # 4:  Plugins give Word Press Blogs more functionality.  During these two labs I will show you the essential plugins and how to install and configure them.  Then in the second lab we will show you premium plugins such as shopping cart, affiliate plugins and membership site plugins.  You will also learn how to connect your blog to your social media.

December 15th: 7:00 PM – 8:00 PM: Lab #3:  Content Rules:  For a Blog to be a blog you need content.  In this lab we will review how to add content to your site, what to add and how much to add, how often.  I will also show you a couple of plugins that can assist you in adding content.

January 5th: 7:00 PM – 8:00 PM: Lab #5: Monetizing Your Blog:  Now, you might want to make some money from your blog.  During this lab we will look at money making blogs and how folks are able to onetize them.

Included in the labs are several e-books about blogging.

Each lab is recorded via Video Conferencing and RePlay links will be provided.  You will be able to go back and watch the lab again in the event that you missed some important details.

A special report regarding Plugins

An E-Book on Cash Blogging

And more….

This isn’t one of those long rambling sales pages — simple to the point.  If you want a blog this lab will get you up and running in 5 weeks.  Be up and online before the holidays and start the new year off with a new blogging presence.

Buy one lab or save on the FULL Pass, receiving all 5 labs for just $99, a savings of over $46.00.

 
Register for Blogging Lab:  Getting Your Blog Up Running and Looking Good in Newton, NJ  on Eventbrite

Donna Price is a speaker, trainer, author and business and marketing strategist. She founded her company, Compass Rose Consulting in 2003 after a 20+ year career in non-profit management and administration. Donna’s history is impressive. She goes beyond the world of work as an adventurer and brings bold living lessons to each of her presentations. Donna has a unique inspirational story – of cycling across the country and how you take wild ideas and make them happen. She is the author of several books including; Yes! Marketing Works, Launching Your Dreams and Employee Coaching. Donna Price works with business leaders, teams and individuals to get them moving, improve their bottom line results through effective strategy, leadership, marketing and communication.

Website vs. Blog: There is a Choice.

Having an internet presence is essential in this business environment.  As a business owner, you must have a web presence.  But when you are developing that web presence you have many decisions to make.  Here are some of the things you need to consider:

  • What is the goal of my website:  Is it to make money?; Is it to create an online brochure?; Do I want it to be interactive?
  • How much control do I want of my site?  Do I want to pay someone to update the site regularly?  Do I have regular content to update?  Do I have the resources to update my site?  Do I want to interact with my customers and prospects on the site?
  • What do I want the site to look like?  What are the branding colors of my company?  Can my logo be included on the site?
  • What other online media do I plan to use with my company?  Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, other social media?  How will my site easily interact with these other online media sources.

When you are putting together your web presence you need to consider all of these things, and probably a few more too.

So, let’s look at each more closely:

What is the goal of my website:  Is it to make money?; Is it to create an online brochure?; Do I want it to be interactive?

There are several different types of websites that you can use.  The most common is a branding site, like this site.  It has information about the company, the leaders, the team etc.  It also includes info about the products and services and they may be for sale on the site.  There are also store fronts that are online that offer a wide array of products or services and that is the site’s main function.  The two other sites that I use are sales pages and squeeze pages.  To see one of my sales pages you can look at:

http://www.entrepreneursvipcoaching.com This page talks solely about my coaching program and the components that are included with it.  It has one purpose — to sell coaching.

http://www.strugglingsmallbusiness.com is one of my squeeze pages.  It has one purpose and that is list building.  If I am working to build my list then I work to drive my web traffic to this site and then once someone has signed up on my list I can send them links to my branding site or my sales page.  But when I pay for traffic, I want information that I can use again and again to build a relationship.

As you build your web presence you might decide to use muliple sites as well.

How much control do I want of my site?  Do I want to pay someone to update the site regularly?  Do I have regular content to update?  Do I have the resources to update my site?  Do I want to interact with my customers and prospects on the site?

As you can see from my site.  I like to have lots of control.  I do work with outside vendors to customize the site, create the look and feel of the site.  I also use Virtual Assistants to add content, articles and set up services or products that are for sale on the site.  But I do maintain quite a bit of control and I know how my site works.  Part of this is largely due to it now be hosted on a WordPress Blog Platform.  Yes, this site is a blog.  And, many of my other sites are moving in that direction as well.  I encourage people to look closely at WordPress because it gives you so much control, AND, you WANT to be able to add content to your site regularly.  Content and information is what makes a site work really well.  Heck, that’s why you are here!  You are reading my “content”, my “information”.  You are deciding if you like me, if you think I know anything.  When a site is built and you don’t add new content to the site, then it becomes stale.  There is little reason for visitors to return to your site. Word Press allows you to control the content, keep it fresh and more (which I will get into in a minute!).

The other aspects of this question are do you have content?  I would challenge that you do.  You have information that you can share with your prospects that will aid in building your business relationship.  Resources, do you have the time and energy to add the content yourself, or do you have the resources to pay someone to add the content?  These are both critical questions.  You need to answer these for yourself.  And, keep in mind that it might change.

What do I want the site to look like?  What are the branding colors of my company?  Can my logo be included on the site?

Yes, your site should help to brand your company.  On this site, we are still working on the branding pieces.  But overall, the branding of the site does fit with my company brand — our colors are orange and red/maroon.  I use a compass as my logo.  Do you see those colors here?  The logo here?  When putting your site together you will want to look at those pieces.  I also have my compass logo in the header.  With Word Press you are able to buy themes that are customizable and you are able to find themes in the free theme directory that are customizable.  Many people become concerned with using a template or in the world of blogs a theme, that other people might be using. 

I believe that if you customize the theme to be yours, then using a pre-built theme or template is cost effective and still accomplishes your goals. I use a customizable theme that is available in the word press directory.

What other online media do I plan to use with my company?  Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, other social media?  How will my site easily interact with these other online media sources.

This is the biggest reason that I use Word Press for my site.  It is interactive.  I can easily connect my site with Facebook, Twitter and I can set up so that you too can “tweet” my posts or “ping” them or send to an array of social book marking sites.  I receive traffic back to my site from my posts on these other sites.  A blog also allows multiple types of “Plugins” that give it different functionality.  And, allows visitors to subscribe, comment and be part of the site.  For me, these are all advantages that my typcial website did not provide.  Yes, I had a blog on my site, but now my whole site IS a blog.  That means when I update a page, it “tweets”, and when I add a post, it “tweets”.  Each of these strategies add to my exposure on the web, and that is what I want!

Web Presence is essential.  It is the HOW that you must decide on as a business owner.  The blog format offers you some versatility that a typical website doesn’t.  And, it offers you a Web 2.0 platform that is interactive and can be co-creative.  Your priority is to be on top of creating a powerful web presence that actually adds to your business.

Donna Price is a speaker, trainer, author and business and marketing strategist. She founded her company, Compass Rose Consulting in 2003 after a 20+ year career in non-profit management and administration. Donna’s history is impressive. She goes beyond the world of work as an adventurer and brings bold living lessons to each of her presentations. Donna has a unique inspirational story – of cycling across the country and how you take wild ideas and make them happen. She is the author of several books including; Yes! Marketing Works, Launching Your Dreams and Employee Coaching. Donna Price works with business leaders, teams and individuals to get them moving, improve their bottom line results through effective strategy, leadership, marketing and communication.

The Design of Your Web Presence — Make it Good

Web marketing design is costly and the lower the budget, the less likely to get a professional job done. Most businesses do have a budget, but if what you are ready to pay seems to be way below what various web designers quote for the same task, then, you could be asking too much for too little. Pricing has some very peculiar rules, and going for the highest quote is not a solution either. There has to be a middle way to creating a good site without ruining your bank account. Here are a few things you should know about the financial details of web marketing design.

First of all, you’ll probably come across free web marketing design services, and although they sound tempting, they could be tricky in terms of quality. Or in case you want to find a volunteer to build your site, that will be even harder to get, in the conditions of a very tough market where time and money rule. Low rates for web marketing design are up to $10 per page, which can tell two things about a business: either the designer is a freelancer who tries to get contracts and make a name, and in that case you’ll get a job well done, or the results are not exactly high quality and you’d be wasting your money.

A fair but moderate quote for web marketing design services would be somewhere between $25 and $50. In case your site requires advanced graphics, lots of programming and even content writing, then the prices could be even higher than that. Very high charges of $500 per page are not always justified, which is why you should ask the web design company for an explanation of what services are included at such a rate. Programming will most certainly be your answer. Up-front payment could sometimes be required for the services. However, if the sum is low, then the payment is one of good faith, but if you are asked for half the sum in advance, don’t pay it because it could be a scam.

Make any web marketing design agreement formal by signing a contract. Specify details such as dates, deadlines, total estimated cost with all the payment dues and even litigation solutions in case of legal problems. It is important to discuss the way work would be handled in case the initial cost estimate is not correct, and you have to pay for more. Some web marketing design companies have standard contracts, but you should be able to work things out with them if something does not please you. If they are not willing to make the changes, then, you should consider working with someone else.

Donna Price is a speaker, trainer, author and business and marketing strategist. She founded her company, Compass Rose Consulting in 2003 after a 20+ year career in non-profit management and administration. Donna’s history is impressive. She goes beyond the world of work as an adventurer and brings bold living lessons to each of her presentations. Donna has a unique inspirational story – of cycling across the country and how you take wild ideas and make them happen. She is the author of several books including; Yes! Marketing Works, Launching Your Dreams and Employee Coaching. Donna Price works with business leaders, teams and individuals to get them moving, improve their bottom line results through effective strategy, leadership, marketing and communication.