Archive for the ‘Business Success’ Category

August 8th, 2020

Writing Great Blog Posts (Part 2)






In my last article I covered writing great blog post headlines. If you missed it Click here to read Part 1



Now that you’ve intrigued your readers and drawn them in with a great headline, you have to keep their attention. As a blogger and copywriter you have to write in a way that keeps readers from taking a quick glance and moving on.



Following are rules for creating an introduction that draws in your readers.



1. Don’t try to sound overly academic

Up to 90% of people that lose weight end up gaining most or all of it back within


Research is valuable, but not in this context unless you’re a healthcare professional. As a blogger you don’t want to bore your readers with statistics.


You want to put yourself in their shoes by showing empathy. Let them know you understand what they’re going through.


You’re sharing the tools you used to overcome a problem.



Example:

Do you hear that?

That little voice speaking to you?

That little voice whispering to you that there’s something else you really want to do. Telling you to go ahead and make the change.

But you’re afraid.

You’re afraid to quit your job and do what your heart is pulling you to do.

You’re afraid of not having what you need to survive; a place to live, food on the table, a car and on and on.

But, mostly you’re afraid of making a mistake. You doubt yourself. You’re afraid of being wrong.




You don’t need to start every post with the empathy aspect. You can choose something else, maybe a story.



2. Get Into the Role

Trigger your readers’ emotions. Think about the range of emotions you want them to feel then get into that role as you write. Is there fear, doubt, anger, sadness, happiness, love, hope, and so on.


As you feel the emotions yourself they will come through in your writing and will be authentic.


So, decide on the emotional journey you want your readers to experience and put that in your writing and your audience will feel that.


Although this rule applies throughout your post, it is of utmost importance for your introduction.
When we write our words reveal our feelings.



3. Entice Readers down the Page


A) Open with Question a Short Sentence

This is a proven technique to draw in your audience.

If you start your post with a long paragraph readers will feel overwhelmed just looking at it.


B) Use Fewer Words

Use as few words as possible.

Write efficiently to give your words power. Whatever the number of words you use in your first draft, cut that in half.

The more you apply this technique the more proficient your blog writing becomes.


C) Set the Tempo

All writing has a pace and rhythm.

The pace of your introduction should be a little fast. Later, you can slow things down by:

Using short sentences or even sentence fragments
Keeping paragraphs to a maximum of three sentences long
Using delayed transitions to weave sentences together
Making each sentence a paragraph that leads into the next one
Reading the post out loud to be sure it flows properly and is moving forward smoothly


You want your readers’ journey to be fast and slow. To ebb and flow. To keep their attention.


That gives your words pace and rhythm.


Example:

“You’re not stupid.

You know what writing is truly about.

It’s a never-ending battle for your readers’ attention.

Every sentence is a link in a taut chain that connects your headline to your conclusion.

And you are just one weak sentence away from losing your reader forever.” — Shane Arthur


He then slows things down in the section that follows with longer sentences.



4. Make Them Beg

Have readers begging for your solutions by adding some fear to your opening.

What are readers’ concerns? What will happen if they don’t solve the problem you’re addressing?

When you expose those fears readers feel your empathy and are more eager for your solution.

Let them know we all have fears and don’t need to hide them.


Example:

Maybe the skeptics are right. Maybe you’re foolish to think you could earn an income doing something you love, instead of tolerating what you’re doing. Who knows?


The fear of failure is painful. Giving a voice to that fear is validating and makes your audience excited for the solutions that will set that fear free.


The fear of failure is painful, yes. But giving voice to it is validating and makes readers eager for the solutions that will set that fear free.




5. Hint at the Solution to Come

As you wrap up your introduction, hint at the solution to come.

The promised purpose of your post. What readers will gain when they follow your methods.

Don’t give it all away. Just a hint to keep readers engaged, because they bore easily.

An introduction is for setting the stage for all the sincere advice your post will provide, not to give answers.



Example:

You’re thinking about setting up a blog to advertise your side gig. You know nothing about blogging. Where do you begin?

A post for beginning bloggers, 4 Blogging Tips



I didn’t know much about blogging, but started anyway.

I used it for an affiliate program I signed up for online.

The program owner offered




Of course you’ll keep reading.


When devising an introduction, try writing two entirely different versions approached from different angles and sparking different emotions. Doing so will highlight the techniques and emotions that work best for both your audience and the content of your post.


Your introduction must satisfy search intent or readers will click the “back” button and you lose them forever.


Search Intent is the reason for the Google search.


It is a large part of SEO (search engine optimization) which would be another article by itself.


If someone searches for “5 Tips for Business Success,” and the post begins with an anecdote people will click away without ever reading the rest of the wisdom-filled post.


Figuring out a keyword’s intent is one of the first things to do. It forms your headline, meta description, introduction, word count, and more.


Take time to analyze results in Google so you know why people enter the particular query your blog post will be targeting.


Figure out the intent, and then make sure your introduction matches it.



Part Three will be covered in my next article.



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July 24th, 2020

Writing Great Blog Posts (Part 1)

by Rahimah Sultan







Although there are many tutorials that can teach you the mechanics of blogging, there is more to writing fantastic blog posts.

Here are some rules to follow when creating your headlines.


1.You Need a Great Topic


Decide on your post headline (title) prior to beginning to write the article. This is your map to follow in order to stay on topic and not confuse readers. You want your readers to reach the intended objective as easily and efficiently as possible.


If you want your blog post to get opened your headline must promise readers the answer to their concerns, what they’re looking for.


To find out what your readers want research:

Review comments on your posts and on posts of other sites in your niche.

Send your subscribers surveys asking them what their greatest struggles are.

Use tools like BuzzSumo to find out what the most popular posts in your niche are (which gives insight into your target readers’ needs).

Read the reviews of books in your niche on Amazon (you’ll find a gold mine of feedback to explore.)



Now you’ve decided on a topic.


Example:

You make jewelry at home. Your headline reads:


How to Make Jewelry


This title is so broad it’s unlikely to draw in many readers.


Tools and Materials Needed to Get Started in Jewelry Making


This is a narrow specific headline that makes your readers feel you have the answers they’re looking for.



2. Take Your Cue from the Pros

“How to” headlines and list post headlines are the easiest templates with which to start. They are classics and proven to work.


“How to” headlines:

 How to start a blog in 2020
 How to make money blogging
 How to make money writing


List Post Headlines:

5 Blogging Ideas
25 Tips for Content Marketing
5 Tips for Business Success
15 One-Sentence Chunks of Online Marketing Advice You Can Use Today



3. Engage Your Senses:

Add sensory details to your headlines. Place yourself in your readers’ shoes. Imagine what they see, feel, taste, smell or hear.


Example:

How to Start a Baking Blog


This is a good headline.


How to Start a Baking Blog on Breads and Delicious French Pastries


This is a better headline. It makes an enticing statement that encourages people to want to know more.


Questions are also a great way to construct headlines that get clicked.

For example:

Are You Making Any of These 7 Common Blogging Mistakes?



4. Give a Tease not the Answer

You want to draw people in to see what you have to offer. Don’t give a solution.


Example:

How to Build a List of Subscribers Using an Autoresponder


You’ve given the answer to a problem; use an autoresponder to build a list.


How to Build a List Faster and Easier


This headline is more interesting and piques curiosity and interest.



5. Don’t be Deceptive

For instance…


5 Steps to a Healthy Life Style


is fine until the 5th step ends up with no advice and leads to a sales page.



6. Streamline Text

Don’t fill your headline with unnecessary words that add no real value:


If You Want to Stay Slim and Trim Here are 5 Things You Must Avoid


Instead use:


5 Things You Must Avoid to Prevent Weight Gain



7. Don’t Use the “I’m intelligent” Aspect


The purpose is not to appear clever or educated.


Your headline should make sense to all readers. They shouldn’t have to guess what the benefit is.


When writing your headline, don’t use metaphors, jargon, rhymes, made-up terms, or anything that tries to be too clever or complicated.


How to be Happy on Life’s Highway


People want specifics related to their needs, not a metaphor.


And this:


How to Maintain Your Beauty as Life is a Fading Flower


What beneficial information can anyone gather from that to make them want to read more? You need to deliver clear benefits in your headlines.


You may be able to make a connection in your post and use it as an analogy, but readers are scanning headlines for things that apply to their particular circumstance. They have no clue as to why they should stop to read further so they probably won’t.



8. Stick to Your Style


Your audience already knows and trusts you, so don’t make any drastic changes.


As you continue to write your style will emerge. Once you decide your style stick with it, although you can gradually change it. Don’t make any drastic changes so your audience will still know, like and trust it’s you.


Create several (5-10) versions of the same headline. The more you practice the better you will become at writing clear, concise and curiosity-invoking headlines that readers can’t resist.


Keep your headlines to 60 characters or less so they don’t get truncated in the SERPs (search engine results pages).


Readers usually don’t click these links.


Example:


How To Start a Blog in 2020 – Easy to Follow Guide for …

www.bloggingbasics101.com › how-do-i-start-a-blogLearn to blog. Step-by-step guide to learn how to start a blog, choose the
best blogging platform and avoid the common
blogging mistakes made by newbies.



Part two will be covered in my next article.



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June 11th, 2020

A Sales Funnel for Your Online Marketing


by Rahimah Sultan








Online marketing is any form of advertising done on the internet. It takes on many shapes and forms and can be done organically for free or it can be paid. Either approach features a number of effective strategies and methods to gain the desired outcome.


One of the primary concepts in the digital marketing industry is the sales funnel.


A sales funnel is a marketing concept that maps out the journey a customer goes through when making any kind of purchase. This model uses a funnel as an analogy because a large number of potential prospects may be available at the beginning of the sales process, but only a portion actually become paying customers.


Your prospects pass through different stages of your sales funnel from the first time they hear about your product or service until the moment they make a purchase.


You must have a clear business vision, develop a marketing strategy and define your target audience before you start building your sales funnel.


You can design your sales funnel with as many stages as you want, although there are generally four main ones that include awareness, interest, decision and action.



4 stages of the sales process. Stages of a Sales Funnel



Awareness

As your prospects become aware of you through various means such as email newsletter signups, online quizzes, ebooks, social media, Google and more, they enter your sales funnel.


Your overall goal with this entire funnel and platform is to solve customer problems. When you know the problem, and build content to draw them in and then offer a product or service to solve their problem, things begin to happen. Getting to that stage takes work and you must first make them aware of you.


You’ve secured your prospects awareness once they’re in your funnel. That’s the first stage.



Interest

As a marketer, your goal is to move your prospects through the multiple stages that will take them from prospect to buyer. Now that they’re aware of you, build interest by establishing a relationship with them. Although you can use a lead magnet (a great offer) to get their email address, you must create a strong bond by being relatable, honest and transparent in your follow up process which is an email sequence.


Email marketing works as well as ever to drive quality traffic to your funnel. Emails are still as profitable as ever and when used correctly, along with your social media platforms, will always be a secret sales weapon.


Your funnel strategy should include sending traffic via organic blog posts SEO and podcasts which are also among the highest-converting forms of content marketing.



Decision

In the third stage you want prospects to make a decision, and that’s not easy. You’ve done your story telling and copywriting and have gotten them to click on your links, by using free methods.  If you’re using paid advertising, you can use re-targeting which gets you more exposure.


Now you need to present prospects with a great opportunity. For this you can use an ongoing exchange of emails in which you offer something of value for free or show how much authority your products or services have or show scarcity as in an offer for a limited time.



Action

The final stage of your sales funnel is getting prospects to take action. You must continue to follow up with more copy, by tracking, and using more email sequences. You’ve only just begun once your funnel is built. The work has only just begun and there is no shortcut.


You can automate your outreach strategy with various programs. The technical aspects of setting up an internet sales funnel include a lead capture page, a sales page, and an autoresponder.


In summary, a sales funnel is a multi-step, multi-modality process that moves prospective browsers into buyers. You’ll need to put in the time if you’re looking to eventually reap the benefits and results. Don’t limit your funnel traffic to one source unless you want your sales to be completely reliant on one platform. These are a few basic steps for setting up A Sales Funnel for Your Online Marketing.



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May 14th, 2020

MLM: Is It Legitimate?



by Rahimah Sultan









Multi-level marketing is called many things: network marketing (most common), direct sales, affiliate marketing, referral marketing, dual-level marketing, consumer-direct marketing, home-based business franchising, home-based business opportunity, and inline marketing.

But, using one of these terms to define a business DOES NOT automatically make it an MLM.

Multi-level marketing companies basically promise a chance to leave your 9-5 job, be your own boss, make lots of money and to make new friends in the process. The ongoing debate is whether these companies and programs are legitimate business opportunities.

According to Wikipedia Multi-level marketing (MLM) is a marketing strategy in which the sales force is compensated not only for sales they generate, but also for the sales of the other salespeople that they recruit. This recruited sales force is referred to as the participant’s “downline”, and can provide multiple levels of compensation. Most commonly, the salespeople are expected to sell products directly to consumers by means of relationship referrals and word of mouth marketing. Some people use direct selling as a synonym for MLM, although MLM is only one type of direct selling.

So, due diligence is required before joining any of these programs.

Here is a great article on MLM.

This post includes an updated 2020 list of the top MLM companies in the US and international ones.


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March 31st, 2020

Online Marketing: More Tips for 2020


by Rahimah Sultan








Although we are at the end of the first quarter of 2020, there are more marketing tactics that you need. You can still use the basics, as they always apply in marketing, along with some changes.

“In 2020, a lot of familiar best practices will get a facelift, and underutilized tactics and software will become more vital for data-driven decision making.”

Brandon Andersen discusses these in his article titled 18 Marketing Tactics You Need In 2020 which you can click here to read.



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March 12th, 2020

Actionable Tips for Marketing Success in 2020

by Rahimah Sultan






As we approach the end of the first quarter of 2020, you may want to review and revise your marketing plans if you haven’t already done so.

I found this article by Robin Colner titled A Guide to successful marketing in 2020. She covers the 10 most important actionable tips for marketing success in 2020.

She discusses mastering the disappearing art of storytelling by creating and posting stories with multiple images and calls-to-action daily on Facebook and Instagram using apps, increasing production of live-streamed video content through the creation of a series to explain your product and services, and experimenting with messenger bots to improve customer service.

 To get all the tips click here.



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December 4th, 2019

Internet Sales Funnel: What Is It?

by Rahimah Sultan









There are many definitions of a sales funnel on the internet. This article, What is a sales funnel and how is it useful? clears things up a bit. It covers sales funnels, stages, and the benefits of a sales funnel.


            Read: 4 Main Stages For Your Sales Funnel


A sales funnel is a way of tracking and showing your prospects’ conversion rates between pipeline stages. Your sales pipeline is the path your customers take, separated into stages. A sales funnel report is important to any sales strategy.


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October 13th, 2019

Affiliate Marketing: Actionable Tips and Strategies

by Rahimah Sultan






Affiliate marketing is an income strategy that involves promoting products or companies in exchange for a commission for each sale. There are certain techniques you need to use in order to outrank your competition in the search engines.


You also have to do research, believe in the product you’re marketing, use low-cost tools for your campaigns, and avoid common pitfalls of affiliate marketing.


Anna Dizon covers these and other steps you need to take to be successful, in her article titled 35 Actionable Affiliate Marketing Tips & Strategies for 2019.

You can click here to read it.


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September 4th, 2019

Email Marketing Is Alive and Well

by Rahimah Sultan







Email marketing is an important tool for drawing in and retaining customers. You can use it to build lists of subscribers to whom you later market your products and services. When your marketing strategy incorporates email marketing you can get a better ROI.


Email marketing is alive and well. Among the many benefits of using email marketing is the fact that when you build an email list you are the owner of that list, unlike using social platforms that can go out of business leaving you with nothing.


You can read Jacinda Santora’s article, Is Email Marketing Dead? Statistics say: Not a Chance, for some great information.


Read more […]






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August 21st, 2019

Content Marketing to Build Audience Relationships

by Rahimah Sultan







There are some brands whose information you look forward to receiving. Then there are those that are so annoying that you wonder why you even bothered.

When you use properly implemented content marketing to build audience relationships, you can expect a positive outcome from your target audience.

“The first step in creating a truly impactful content marketing plan that leads to lasting relationships with your target audience is really understanding …”

Read Anthony Gaenzle’s article for more.






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