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The Five Pillars of Marketing Success

Does the following give a pretty good picture of your current marketing activity?

You have a website but you’re not really satisfied with it. You go to networking events once in awhile. If someone asks you to give a talk, you’re happy to do it. You post on Facebook and/or LinkedIn semi-regularly. When you find the time, you send an article to those on your relatively small email list. You occasionally set up meetings with colleagues to explore opportunities.

Now there’s nothing wrong with any of those marketing activities. And usually, they will result in landing some new clients.

But this is not the approach that works to get a steady, predictable stream of new clients.

Please don’t tune me out here, thinking, “Well, I really can’t do more than this. I’m already stretched thin. If you give me too much to do I’ll get overwhelmed.”

I agree. It’s not that you need to do more marketing, it’s that you need to shift your marketing paradigm from one of “Randomness” to one that is “Focused.”

Random marketing is just that; it’s all over the place. You do a little bit here and a little bit there on an inconsistent basis. You are trying to keep your face, name, and message in front of your prospective clients but the results are unpredictable.

The Random marketing paradigm is not very effective because it doesn’t gain a lot of momentum. You don’t do enough of one marketing activity to grab the attention of your prospective clients and move them to take action.

The Focused Marketing Paradigm is very different. It’s based on repeatedly communicating very directly to your target market with a very definite end in mind. It gets the attention of your prospective clients and they ultimately take action.

The Focused Marketing Paradigm has Five Pillars

Understand and implement these five pillars and I promise you’ll see a shift in your marketing results.

Pillar One: Focused Goals

A Random goal is saying something like, “I’d like to attract a few more clients to my business.” Not very compelling is it?

A Focused goal is much more specific. “My goal is to land 3 new clients in the high-tech plastics business in the Houston area with an average project size of $30,000 each by the end of the year.”

The more detail, depth, and specificity about the goal, the better. You’ve really thought through what you want to achieve and also have confidence that you could deliver if you did reach your goal. It’s so real to you that you can taste it.

What is the Focused Goal for your marketing?

Pillar Two: Focused Program or Service

Random programs or services are generalized consulting, coaching or training programs. “I offer management consulting and training to corporations.” Kind of vague, right? But this is what I hear all the time.

A Focused Program or Service is more tangible. “I offer the high-tech plastics industry Management Acceleration Programs for emerging leaders in the industry.”

In my business, I’ve always offered programs: The Marketing Mastery Program, the Marketing Action Group, and the More Clients Club. And each program has very specific parameters, deliverables, and objectives. It sure makes intangible services easier to market and sell.

What is the Focused Program or Service you’re offering?

Pillar Three: Focused Target Market

In the above example, the target was the “high-tech plastics industry.” But it’s more common to hear things like, “I work with large companies who want to increase productivity.” This is too general and it makes it hard for clients to know if you understand them and can help them.

A Focused target market is where you are absolutely clear what kinds of people or companies can most benefit from your expertise. And then you articulate that clearly.

I worked with a financial planning company last year that targeted middle class families in the Buffalo New York area. Guess who they attracted to their practice? When people read about who they worked with on their website, they said, “That’s Us!” and called them.

Who exactly is your Focused Target Market?

Pillar Four: Focused Message and Value Proposition

A Random message or value proposition tends to be too general and can be hard to pin down. It avoids making a promise that is meaningful to the prospective client.

Messages such as, “We offer the best service in the industry,” or “Smart insights into great management,” are meaningless to your prospective clients. The value is not immediately obvious.

A Focused message or value proposition zeros in on exactly what your clients get and what it means to them. I admit that this can be the marketing pillar that is hardest to pin down. Ultimately you have to test a number of different things.

For the re-launch of the More Clients Club, my current value proposition is: “Everything Self-Employed Professionals Need in One Place to Attract More Clients.” And now, of course, I’m bending over backward to deliver on that promise.

And a marketing message or value proposition is much more than a sound bite. Your message must permeate every aspect of your marketing, from your website to the emails you send out. Your prospects need to be constantly reminded of the value you offer.

What is your Focused Message or Value Proposition?

Pillar Five: Focused Marketing Strategy

A Random marketing strategy is much like the collection of marketing activities I outlined at the top of the article. You’re just all over the place, throwing something at the wall, hoping it will stick, with no organized system or plan.

A Focused marketing strategy is more like a putting on a theatrical production. You have the script, the actors, rehearsals, and opening night, all executed on a strict timeline.

Two examples:

For my Marketing Mastery Program, I held a series of introductory teleconferences, invited those interested to apply for the program, interviewed each applicant, and then converted 50% into participants. Over a 6-week period, I filled my business for a full year – four years in a row.

A career coach in one of my programs recently filled her practice in three months with a focused campaign of personalized emails designed to get appointments with her ideal clients. Then she converted a large percentage into paying clients.

That’s the power of a focused marketing strategy.

You need to identify the right marketing strategy for your business, but even more important is the way you organize and implement the strategy.

Developing a focused strategy is the most complex and challenging of the Five Pillars. You can’t just put together something haphazardly and hope you get the equivalent of a professional Shakespearian production.

What is your Focused Marketing Strategy?

If you work to build a focused plan with these five solid pillars, your marketing will work better and faster, attracting more of your ideal clients, usually at a higher rate.

I recommend you work on one pillar at a time. Write them out and fine-tune them until you feel confident and excited about them. Yes, you will need to do some research and study to make sure your plan is viable. But this is certainly better than spinning your wheels with a random strategy that is going nowhere.


Here Are 6 Simple (Not Easy) Steps to Profitable Internet Marketing

I’m feeling rested because I took the week off from working out. My body has gone through some rigorous training the last couple of months and I just felt exhausted.

That’s usually a sure sign to just take it easy.

My younger self would have just pushed it and probably got hurt. I’m older and wiser now, over the years I’ve learned to listen to my body. Especially, when it comes to lifting weights.

The weights are merciless.

It’ll break you if you’re not careful.

Yesterday, I covered the 7 powerful strategies to implement before you start Internet Marketing for your local brick-and-mortar, e-commerce and start up business.

These are areas the majority miss the boat on and it costs them in money and time.

My intention with yesterday’s article was to help you get up to speed quickly without making costly mistakes. Click here to read yesterday’s article.

A client asked me earlier this morning: Eric, if you were to distill down the most important steps to start profitably Internet Marketing, what would they be?

I thought the answer to this question to be the perfect follow up to yesterday’s article because it’s scary when you first start Internet Marketing. I know from personal experience.

Not to mention a little bit intimidating. However, if you follow these six steps, you can begin Internet Marketing with a solid foundation.

A solid foundation is key to growing a successful business that leverages proven 21st century marketing strategies and technology.

Here are 6 simple (not easy) steps to profitable Internet Marketing:

1. Decide on an Internet Marketing (IM) model. There are 3 proven IM models you can deploy now.

Tomorrow, I’ll go deep into these IM models that are proven time and time again to work like gangbusters!

You’ll then be able to decide which model to deploy that suits your style and unique talents.

For now, let me give you a quick introduction to these IM models so you can get started in the right direction:

First, there’s Affiliate Marketing that involves promoting someone else’s product or service for a significant share of the sale.

Typically, most affiliate programs are commission based.

The second IM model is Info-Product Creation where you create a digital product such as an eBook or multi-media course. Your content is protected in a membership site.

Third, there’s Service-based models that involves you providing a service. The service can be delivered online or offline but you’re advertising and marketing that service online.

Dahl Integration Marketing is a great example of all these IM models.

We have our own Info-products that we promote, we also promote others products and services.

And we have our own Funnel Vision Method suite of services that helps businesses grow their lead, customer and patient base.

Fourth, you can sell products using online shopping centers such as Amazon and eBay.

2. Decide what you want to sell. After choosing an IM model you prefer, it’s time to decide what you want to sell. Let’s use affiliate marketing as an example.

What product or service do you want to promote? ClickBank.com has tens of thousands of digital products that you can promote as an affiliate.

You can promote e-business products, health & fitness, spiritual products and more. The best way to decide on what to sell is to start with your passion.

What are you passionate about?

What is it that really drives you to get up in the morning?

From my experience, you’ll find out that pursuing something you actually love (or interested in) makes it a lot more fun and interesting.

If you’re going to go the “services” route, you need to decide on what you want to offer as a service.

Are you good at writing?

How about designing?

If you’re already an established business offline, like many of my clients, then consider taking your proven service online.

3. Create or prepare your offer. Let’s say you go the product creation route. The next step is to create your product.

If it’s an eBook you’re creating, either write it or outsource the writing (more on this topic will be explained in later articles).

As a general guide, if you have time, create the product yourself. On the contrary, if you don’t have time, outsource it. Both paths have its own pros and cons, but I’ll explain more in later articles.

If you’re promoting a service then all you need might be a simple sales page. Obviously, without exposure you won’t make any sales, so you need traffic.

Follow these next 4-6 steps to make sure your business thrives with more leads, clients, patients and referrals effortlessly…

… Contrary to popular belief successful Internet Marketing goes way beyond just maintaining your website.

It’s also about growing your business strategically so you can EXTRACT profits in the long run. Here are three essential steps to follow to ensure your business stays profitable while you make the offline-to-online transition.

4. Attract More Traffic. No, this doesn’t involve driving around town avoiding city traffic. The term means increasing the number of times people come to your website through searches and links on other sites, because they’re looking for the products and services you have to offer.

This requires you to find as many ways of attracting traffic as you can. There are never any guarantees that one method for getting traffic, will even work, let alone, work well enough to bring in plenty of extra business or keep working long-term.

Diversification is the name of the game when it comes to traffic generation.

You can use:

Article marketing
Email marketing
Pay-per-click advertising
Solo ads
And other methods to help get more people to check out your offers and hopefully become leads and ultimately loyal customers.

NOTE: If you’re interested in mastering traffic, I recommend you purchase one of our best-selling products, Internet Traffic Mastery.

5. Make sales.

PRO TIP: Once you have people visiting your sites, send new traffic to a landing page (I’ll share more on this strategy in later articles).

You’ll start seeing sales happening as people find you through your digital advertising methods and join your email list.

The success you experience will depend on how consistently you advertise and market your business. Repeat customers are the best so always look after every client you attract.

Eventually you should start to make regular sales but it won’t happen overnight. You have to give yourself time to build your pipeline.

For instance, just having 20 people on your list, although a great start, isn’t going to lead to serious success.

It’s the consistent additions to your list over time, that’ll lead to serious success…

… Levels of success you can’t even dream of…

… until it happens to you!

Stay consistent my friend!

6. Keep your clients coming back for more. Making the right first impression on your clients will get you that first sale.

It’s critical to take good care of current customers because it’s far easier to keep a customer, than to acquire a new one.

Do everything you can to outperform your competitors, in every possible way, so that your customers have no reason to go elsewhere.

In conclusion, I just gave you a taste of how Internet Marketing works and tomorrow I’ll start a deep dive into the 3 IM models to help you choose the one that suits you best.

I know there’s one that will suit your interests and complement your skills.

In reality, the Internet can give you countless possibilities in business and earnings. I’ll focus on the most proven ones.

These 3 IM models are known to have launched thousands of Internet businesses all over the world, help startups become successful and scaled local brick-and-mortar businesses…


Some Straight Talk on Affiliate Marketing

My wife and daughter are out of town today so I was going to get caught up on my favorite TV shows: Supergirl, Flash, Supernatural and Legion.

I definitely like the superhero shows. I grew up watching Christopher Reeve’s Superman films and reading comics.

But when I got home, I decided to take a nap…

… and that nap turned into sleeping through the night!

Remember, yesterday I gave you a taste of how Internet Marketing works. Click here if you missed it so you can catch up!

I know there’s one that’ll suit your interests and complement your skills.

In reality, the Internet can give you countless possibilities in business and earnings. I’ll focus on the most proven ones.

These are known to have launched thousands of Internet businesses all over the world and helped local brick-and-mortar businesses see profits early.

And today I’ll start examining for you the 3 Internet Marketing (IM) models for you to choose from, starting with Affiliate Marketing.

This model is all about you joining forces with an online seller or retailer. I’ll refer to them as merchants for the rest of this article.

The revenue will be shared by you and the merchant.

How does it work EXACTLY?

Well, income is usually generated through visitors clicking through to your landing page via an ad you posted. Or through purchases from clients, who have visited your landing page.

How you’re compensated, ultimately, depends on, one of three types of Affiliate Marketing you choose to work with:

1. Pay per Sale Affiliate Marketing – this will allow you to earn income from sales finalized through advertisements you post.

The merchants will monitor your activity through these sales.

Every time they close deals originating from your ad, you’ll receive a percentage of the income or a fixed commission, depending on the number of sales finalized. One example is ClickBank.com.

2. Pay Per Click Affiliate Marketing – this model is all about linking the merchant’s website to your own website. Say the merchant pays to have their ad posted on your page. Every time a visitor clicks the link that leads to your affiliate merchant’s page, you’ll earn a fixed amount.

3. Pay per Lead Affiliate Marketing – In this case, you’ll accept advertisements posted on your website. When leads originate from the ads or links on your website, you’ll get compensated.

How are payments made?

Payments are made instantly, weekly, bi-weekly or on a monthly basis. The payments you receive will be determined by the commission rate your merchant gives affiliates.

Personally, the affiliate program Dahl Integration Marketing prefers uses Click Bank for payments. I have it set up to pay us weekly.

There are several ways to get your payments:

One is via electronic banking by way of payment or financial websites.
Money can also be wired through to your personal or business bank account – this can also be done online or through direct bank deposits.
A regular check can be mailed to you.
Another popular way to receive payments is via PayPal.
What Skills Are Required to Start an Affiliate Marketing Business?

You need to know pay-per-click advertising, email marketing and copywriting.

Advantages of Affiliate Marketing:

1. Generally speaking, you don’t need to spend a lot of cash to get started. Most Affiliate Programs are free to join although they’ll ask you to apply.

That said, there are Premium Affiliate Programs where affiliates pay a licensing fee of $1,000 or more.

2. You can earn money while you sleep. Who doesn’t want to earn more cash in the middle of the night?

When this first happened to me I felt an enormous weight lifted off my shoulders because income wasn’t always dependent on my time.

3. It’s one of the easiest ways to earn income (when you compare it to creating and marketing your own products) because you shorten the time to market.

When you create your own products and services you’re on the hook to prove that it can sell. This initial test campaign can cost thousands of dollars to prove your offers’ feasibility.

Conversely, you can simply promote a popular product that’s already proven successful and skip all the trial-and-error and initial ‘cold-hard’ cash outlay.

Whether you’re in this as a part-time source of income or as a long-term business, affiliate marketing is still one of the best ways to earn income without all the typical hassles of managing a business.

4. If you’re successful, you’ll always be up-to-date with what’s going on in the world of Internet marketing. This is a great opportunity for you to find or create different products and services to feature on your website.

5. You’ll also have opportunities to work with other affiliate marketers and increase your earnings together.

The Downsides to Affiliate Marketing

Although you can make a living with affiliate marketing, there are a couple of downsides to this model that you should know.

Once you have all this information, you can devise plans to help you avoid these potentially costly problems:

1. As an affiliate, you may fall victim to shady businesses and, in turn, you may be accused of deceiving clients.

To make sure that you keep this from happening, you have to screen all your merchants. Verify their products and check if their actual businesses are legit.

A rule of thumb is to first become a client of the merchants you plan to work with. What’s more, it’s always easier to sell a product or service you believe in, because you’re a client and can speak from your own experience with the product.

You also need to read the fine print in the contract of affiliation before finalizing the deal.

2. You’ll stop earning without prior notice. This can happen if you do not regularly communicate with your merchants.

Merchants can stop or discontinue production of products without informing their affiliates (and in some cases go out of business) so be sure to stay in touch with your merchants to avoid this problem.


Marketers Need to Know: Where Are They? Where Are They Not?

When I was a student, I must admit I thought it really didn’t relate to my (limited) worldview. Since then, I’ve found how important geography can be for business use, and the many practical uses of this subject are just as relevant as they were when you and I were in school. Be assured that, in the world of growing a business, geography is very practical as a tool for marketing tasks, delivery and scheduling decisions, and optimizing staffing levels.

Even in this age of GPS on your mobile phone, physical maps can give very useful information to marketers and managers at minimal cost. Companies analyze where customers come from. Just as importantly, they also analyze where customers do NOT come from. This is particularly useful for:

  • Discovering the effect of advertising and use of media;
  • Whether to invest in opening new locations or closing old ones;
  • Directing salespeople to geographic areas;
  • Aiding analysis of market penetration and market share;
  • When overlaid with demographic data, to see whether an area meets the ideal customer criteria;
  • When planning a sales trip to a regular client, a salesperson can determine where to do some prospecting;
  • Figuring out logistics in moving inventory from one location to another;
  • Determining boundaries for promotions, especially when using direct mail (and before you send an email, direct mail can still be a very effective medium for some businesses).

Many companies use software that can map customer distribution and market penetration to optimize their delivery or service resources. A small company that serves a limited geographic area can find it easier and more economical to use a manual method.

One company, which serves a three-county geographic area, mounted a regional map on the wall. They use different colors of pushpins to show addresses of new customers and old customers. Every three months they take a photo of the map and compare the current distribution of customers to photos from previous time periods. While this certainly isn’t a precise statistical study, general advertising and customer purchasing patterns show up vividly. Future promotional and advertising plans can be made from this information. Naturally, they remove the pushpins after they take the photo and start over.

The same principle can apply if your market is more local or much larger using zip code, state, or national maps. So, take a geographical analysis approach to track marketing results, get a better understanding of your customer and prospect base, and increase the return on your advertising investment.


Marketing Examples For An In-Home Care Services Company

When marketing an in-home care service, it’s important to reach the family members of those who will be paying for the service on an emotional level. One should use various mediums to do this; Radio talk shows, podcasts, YouTube videos, blog posts, websites, etc. Below are some examples that might help you put together an award winning level marketing strategy.

First, I’d like to point you to a short introduction opener; a 20-second speech – even if you talk slow. You should deliver this message with emotional passion. You can use it to explain your services to anyone at any time – at a Chamber of Commerce Mixer, leads club meeting, local service club or before a speech on the topic.

20-Second Introduction:

I am _____________________, we are putting the “caring” back into in-home care. Our trained, devoted, and background checked caregivers treat every client like family. It’s in our ___________ Care Services DNA. We help seniors stay happily in their homes and age with dignity.

— —- —

60-second pitch for: radio ad, chamber mixer introduction, elevator sales pitch

We help seniors stay in their own homes aging with dignity – we prepare meals, pick up items from the store, drive seniors to the doctor, pharmacy, hair salon, or coffee shop.

We remind seniors when it’s time to take medications, and help them with very personal stuff like taking a bath. Our goal is to provide companionship, assistance, and prevent falls and clean up a little around the house – making beds, helping with laundry.

You see, we want to put the “caring” back into the in-home care industry. Our seniors are not captured customers for extracting exorbitant fees – our seniors are real people, who deserve the best. We will all be seniors one day, it’s time for change is now.

Our team of care professionals make all this possible, and we have some of the best clients in the world, and we thank them for making us number one in ________ County – This is what makes our work so rewarding.

—- —– —–

As you can see by these examples, the dialogue has to be about them, your clients, not about YOU or your company. Too many companies miss the opportunity to talk with their potential customers and instead end up talking at them, and telling them how great they are. That’s not needed, customers need to know what’s in it for them and why they should choose you. I hope this help you with your online marketing strategy.


Working Effectively With Millennials

If you are from an earlier generation than the generation classified as Millennials, you probably view business and technology differently than younger generations do. In fact, you probably see obvious differences, at least on the outside.

The negative (and somewhat unfair) reputation of Millennials
Millennials (those born between 1977 and 1992) have some negative qualities attached to their generation. Then again, that can be said of every generation. If you are confused about that age range, it is probably because Millennials used to be known as the generation that was born between 1980 and 1992. However, that has been revisited to include additional years on the front end. Anyway, some of the negative qualities that have been assigned to that generation are not deserved and some are. Of course, the other thing to keep in mind is that there are exceptions in every group of people and generalizing never really got anyone anywhere good.

Some of those negative attributes are:

  • A strong sense of entitlement
  • A constant pursuit of praise or compliments
  • Continually having their faces buried in their phones or other mobile devices

While those attributes are based on facts, there are also a lot of positive attributes that should be acknowledged. In fact, those positive attributes outweigh the negative ones and that is exactly how you should think about Millennials. They have a lot of strengths and other generations can actually learn a great deal from them. You just need to be open-minded about it.

Here are some of those great attributes that should be leveraged by older generations.

  • Accept that the world is changing and embrace the change: With the way that technology is coming at you at such a pace, it is critical for your business that you not only accept that change is all around but that you also embrace that change in the best way that you can. The fact is (of course, there are exceptions, just like with anything else) that Millennials are extremely technology-savvy. That doesn’t just mean that they are only knowledgeable about how to effectively use the technology that we have now. It also means that they are forward-thinking and creative about technology that will be emerging in the near and distant future. Of course, that translates to business in an extremely impactful way as well.
  • Multitasking more effectively in business: In the fast-paced world in which we live, Millennials have learned to adapt (or they were born into it to a great extent) to whatever comes their way. Not only are they comfortable in this sort of an environment but they flourish and truly shine. Another one of the core values of Millennials is that they feel very strongly that there should be a work-life balance that keeps them healthy. They love their work but they also want lives. They won’t allow work to replace life, ever. The truth is that if the employees are happy, they will be more productive and the quality of the work will be better. It is truly a win-win situation.
  • Cultivate your passion(s): Another core value of Millennials is that they don’t like to waste time on things about which they are not passionate. They feel that it is uninspiring to “waste” time at work or at home and they will never be even remotely satisfied with working just to collect a paycheck. It will never be enough for them. In other words, they will never agree to settle.
  • Millennials are not afraid to take risks: The truth is that Millennials want a great deal out of life, which they are willing to take risks to achieve. They generally don’t view failures as failures. They consider them learning experiences instead, which, of course, is a much healthier way of viewing it.
  • Millennials are happy to pay it forward: They care about the world in which they live and they want to make it a better place for them and for others. At the same time, they want to live comfortably. They are very happy to use the tools at their disposal to do what they can to carve out a great world. They are certainly not an apathetic generation. In fact, they are the opposite.

Conclusion
Millennials are a generation of people who feel that the world is theirs. However, with that in mind, they are also willing to work hard to ensure that the world in which they live is the best that it can possibly be for everyone who lives in it. Millennials embrace change as it comes about. They are also open-minded about accepting new ideas. Other (older) generations can certainly learn a great deal from them so that everyone lives in greater harmony.

Carolyn T. Cohn is the Chief Editor of CompuKol Communications. Mrs. Cohn has a wealth of experience in managing people and projects. She has run several editorial departments for various companies. Mrs. Cohn has 25 years of editorial experience and her expertise covers a wide range of media, such as online editing, editing books, journal articles, abstracts, and promotional and educational materials. Throughout her career, Mrs. Cohn has established and maintained strong relationships with professionals from a wide range of companies. The principle that governs her work is that all words need to be edited.


5 Smooth Techniques To Land Your First Side Hustle Patron

Landing your first patron can also sound like an exceedingly tough element to do at first. However, if you paintings on developing your capabilities and discover ways to gift yourself as a person who can add fee to other human beings organizations, then you definitely be able to get the ball rolling for your facet hustle!

So, here are 5 clean techniques you may comply with to get your first-ever paying client:

1. Allow your friends know

Don’t be shy. Your actual pals could be glad that will help you out, and in the event that they believe in you and your competencies, they’ll be glad to unfold the phrase approximately you. In case you’ve were given well-related buddies, ask for help. They’ll be capable of connect you along with your first consumer!

2. Placed out flyers to your community

Yes, this technique nevertheless works. And this is mainly useful in case you’re servicing a neighborhood location. For example, if you’re offering canine walking services, you could put out flyers for your neighborhood. Search for community boards. And don’t forget about to place your name and wide variety in your flyer!

3. Market it on social media

Whilst marketing on social media can fee you a quite penny, it’s going to be worth it if you fee top greenback on your offerings. And what’s sincerely awesome about social classified ads is you could drill down into your target market. You’re no longer restrained to focused on humans to your place. In reality, you can target pretty much anybody in the world who’s got an account at that particular social platform!

4. Begin a blog

Blogging is a great way to exhibit your know-how. Potential customers can without difficulty see if you’re really worth the fee you’re quoting. Further to the usage of your blog as a platform to draw customers, you could additionally monetize it any number of methods. For starters, you could advise merchandise you’re affiliated with for your weblog. Any time someone buys through your associate hyperlink, you get a nice fee!

5. Have your very own business card

When you have your own commercial enterprise card, you make your business look valid and now not just a few fly-via-night time carrier. Attend meetings and seminars and community with human beings in your enterprise. Make certain you distribute your business card so people can effortlessly get in touch with you ought to they need your help!

100% amateur-pleasant – No ‘tech’ talents Required This is the software that can help you get paying clients today and helps you discovers their extra needs so you can monetize with that.


I Know Content Matters, But I Don’t Have Time to Create It!

It’s almost become cliché to say, “content is king!”, so much so that many have forgotten why it matters. We assume that content is a trend to stay competitive or appear current, or simply that it’s a construct of social media. The truth is that content has always been relevant, albeit in a different form. Let’s look at two examples where content matters (and neither example has anything to do with social media):

  1. You visit your local hardware store because your tap is leaking. You’ve done research online, and you’re pretty sure you know what you’re doing. As you’re surveying the available options, (let’s face it, you’re trying to look like you know what you’re doing, but secretly you’re terrified that you’ll have a flooded house at the end of this), but a store representative comes over to check on you (they can sense fear!). In a very casual, non-condescending way, they make some suggestions. You feel more confident and can make an informed decision while having the satisfaction of doing this yourself. The next time you need to make a similar purchase, you’re going to visit your local hardware store versus buying online -because of the CONTENT you received. We sometimes think of service as “service,” but information sharing is content.
  2. You attend a local business networking event, business cards in hand, name badge on, best elevator speech every practiced to perfection. You look around the room, who are others going to gravitate to? The person who’s handing out cards like it’s a contest, or the person engaging and sharing knowledge, making introductions, listening and contributing thoughtfully? I vote for the latter – the one providing CONTENT.

And this is where so many entrepreneurs get stuck – content doesn’t have to be this huge endeavor that takes weeks to produce. It is sharing, just simply sharing for sharing sake. I believe that there’s value to a larger project for content delivering (such as a lead magnet) that you offer periodically. But there’s also tremendous value to the little contributions that showcase who you are, what’s important to you, and your brand.

Here are our top 5 tips to increase the content you create and share with current and prospective clients:

  1. Provide testimonials for services that compliment your own – there is nothing better than paying it forward and supporting other business owners. Even if its something as simple as a great restaurant for holding meetings, or a graphic designer that just did your business cards, we all love to hear about great experiences!
  2. Create a calendar, at a high level, to guide your content creation – maybe this is focusing on a topic a month, or coming up with a schedule that you cycle through:
    • Week 1 – literature review, or a book club
    • Week 2 – how to keep motivated
    • Week 3 – accountability check in
    • Week 4 – planning for success
  3. Be honest with what you’re good at: do you love writing – but aren’t tech savvy enough to post your blog? Or do you hate writing and need a ghost writer? Do you feel that you have content everywhere but don’t know what to do with it? Wherever you are on the spectrum, there’s someone out there that can help!
  4. Set a timer – this relates to our comment above about larger projects versus small interactions – some of the best content comes spontaneously, but its easy to get lost in social media and before you know it, you’ve lost hours. Set a timer, with objectives, so you stay consistent and on-track. Use that time to contribute and engage with followers.
  5. Remember content is sharing of information, both online and in-person, so mix it up a bit and attend a networking event with the objective to share not sell.


Study Election and Learn Marketing Techniques

From now until the elections in November, you and I will become inundated with campaign 2018 from candidates for local, regional, state, and national offices (from U.S. Senator to local school boards). We will be receiving many thousands of marketing messages to attract votes and funding. Our mailboxes will start overflowing with campaign literature. Our inboxes will get clogged with emails from candidates and their supporters. Social media will be filled with “Likes” from our “Friends.” News stories on TV, radio, and newspapers will crowd out less important news. Media advertising will explode. Observing the process is like taking a master’s class on business strategy and tactics.

Political campaigns don’t miss a trick. They speak of mission and vision. They appeal to our core fears, concerns, ambitions, and beliefs. They study opponents to create differentiated positions and attempt to extol the virtues of fundamentally unique viewpoints. They personalize their messages to meet the needs of their audiences. They “wordsmith” speeches and ads to gain votes in their favor.

To enhance their image, their message, and their attractiveness to the electorate, candidates employ many marketing professionals. Speechwriters, copywriters, voice coaches, acting coaches, advertising and public relations agencies, social media experts, media advisors, wardrobe consultants, makeup artists, hair stylists, demographers, statisticians, and consultants make up the marketing army that workto get out the winning word to the right people at the right time. After all, the candidates are selling a product (themselves) and a service (governing from a particular point of view) and need to attract more votes than their opponent to win.

Is this any different than marketing a business, the products and services a business sells? Of course not.

From an academic standpoint it’s much the same strategy and tactics – appeal to those who aren’t aware, get them to see, hear, listen to your message, stimulate them to understand and embrace, then evangelize for you. A campaign is the point where image, message, vision, differentiation converge and are just as important in commerce as in an election.

As citizens we vote at our polling place with our ballot just as when we shop at a store or on line as customers we vote with our wallets. No matter, when voting or making a purchase we are responding consciously or subconsciously to the marketing that has been sent to us and we’ve absorbed. The message is clear. No matter what you are selling, market better to win!