Oh, you brave affiliate marketers. Trying to outdo major corporations with only your passion, hard work and marketing savvy. It’s no little thing, what you’ve undertaken. You need all the help you can get. Just remember: One tool won’t make the difference between success and failure. But if you’re already on your way to success, a good tool can give you an edge.
We’ve compiled this list in the hopes of giving you as many edges as possible. Every tool listed here is free. To keep this list manageable, I have not included even one WordPress plugin. There are no apps, either. It was hard. But next week’s post will make up for some of the absence. It’s a roundup of the best and most essential free WordPress plugins.
The number one goal of your business blog is to collect email addresses. Most people are surprised to hear this. They think their website exists to generate sales. It does, but it’s not the number one reason for it.
This is especially true if you are a service professional like a coach, consultant, trainer, freelancer, or if you are a solopreneur selling physical goods such as jewellery, art, bespoke furniture, personalised stationary items, or hand crafted accessories.
The way Internet marketing works is that people seldom buy from you on the first encounter. They stumble across your blog after clicking on a link they found on social media, in a group, or on a recommendation by someone and now it’s your job to tell them what to do next.
Do you use YouTube as part of your social media strategy? If you’re not, then you really should. Video promotion is becoming ever more important in this digital age. It goes without saying that attaching an eye-catching image to your blog post will immediately improve its chances of being read and shared on social media. But, increasingly, even these picture-perfect posts are being overlooked in favour of the even more passive information transmission – video.
Even if you’re already utilizing the wonderful service that is YouTube, you may still be wondering what more you can be doing to try and increase your following, shares and engagement.
When it comes to influencing others and making a bigger impact, most people are truly sceptical. They don’t think they have it in themselves to persuade others. They are also in awe of others who seem to be naturally persuasive. Well, I won’t argue that some people are born persuasive, but it is also possible to learn the art and science of influence. You, too can become a master of getting people to sit up and take notice of you and your ideas. All you need is a nudge in the right direction.
“To confirm or not to confirm, that is the question.” from Shakespeare’s lost manuscript, The Opt-in Dilemma*
Email marketers are generally agreeable people. But there is one issue that divides us: Double versus single opt-in. Some of us think double opt-in is unnecessary. Others think single opt-in creates a less responsive list. While I can’t resolve the dispute in one post, I do have some new information to help you make the decision for yourself.
For you newbies, the difference between double and single opt-in is about sending or not sending a confirmation email after someone signs up for your list. With single opt-in, all someone has to do is to fill out your opt-in form and click “submit”. After that, they’re subscribed.
Email marketing is an effective way to engage your contacts and promote your business. You can send offers to people who have subscribed to your email list in real-time. Emails involve no expensive overheads, saving both paper and postage. Better yet, you can monitor whether or not the recipients of your email actually open, read, and act on it. Email continues to be an important marketing channel for many businesses.
Email Marketing Challenges
Over the past few years, email marketing has faced many obstacles. Most people receive hundreds of emails each day. You want yours to stand out in the crowd. The sheer volume of email makes it harder to convince people to open your emails and act on them. In addition, there are also anti-spam laws that you need to pay attention to. The popularity of social media also impacts your email strategy.
Anyone who writes a book has a dream — seeing their name on the prestigious NYT bestseller list in the coveted #1 spot. Accomplishing such a goal is the result of a lot of hard work. But is it the beginning of a period of new impact, influence, and business success? Let’s take a look at Mark Anastasi’s success story and find out.
In 2004, Mark started his business with a clear, inspiring mission:
“We elevate the quality of life and financial wellbeing of our clients.”
His timing was perfect. All around the world, job security was eroding. Economic shifts were leaving long-term employees without income. People in all walks of life needed solid advice on achieving prosperity and security for themselves and their families.
Last year 56% of marketers were embarking upon content marketing without a plan. As any blogger who has floundered down this path will tell you – this way madness lies. Creating decent content for your blog is not an easy thing.
You know as well as I do that it can sometimes take up hours of your time as you carefully piece together something that you are sure is absolutely brilliant, only to find that once published it actually attracts very little engagement, shares, likes, traffic, and/or leads. This can indeed be rather discouraging, and can often make you wonder if there’s much use in what you’re trying so hard to do at all.
Although they are “just” for your own employees, internal email newsletters shouldn’t be taken for granted. They serve an important role in companies or organizations so they should be thoughtfully crafted. They can be effective communication tools as such, it’s important to learn how to best do internal email newsletters.
Objectives of Internal Email Newsletters
Before going into the discussion on how to come up with excellent internal email newsletters, it’s important to know what the objectives of these newsletters are and what elements define them.
Facebook is giving YouTube a run for its money. Literally. The biggest social network has been making a lot of changes with videos in the last few months. It seems like a good time to do an update on what’s happened, what might happen, and how to make it all work for you.
Four significant things have happened recently:
1) There are more videos directly uploaded to Facebook than to YouTube. This chart from Social Bakers shows the shift happening in late October of 2014:
2) You can upload a video straight to Facebook, skipping YouTube entirely.