How to Create Compelling Content

The Internet is made up of millions of websites, all of which offer something different yet all have the same purpose; they want people to read the content on the page. This is where compelling content creation can help. Compelling content is the best way to create a stir about your website, therefore increasing traffic and building a client base.

There are important steps you need to take when writing content for your website. Here are few to think about when planning the content that makes it onto your site.

• Be creative when writing your content and keep it simple for the reader.
• Try to connect with the reader by telling a story in relation to your product.
• Engage the reader by using humor or an upbeat attitude throughout the website. No one likes a monotone speaker and the same goes for boring, dragging content on a site.
• While writing, use an active tone to call the customer into action.
• Pepper the copy with SEO rich keywords to increase page rankings.

The main goal is to keep the reader interested in what they are reading. When a reader, especially online, loses interest you are at risk of losing a potential customer. The customer wants to feel a connection to what they are reading, so presenting the content in a casual tone and providing valuable content, will keep them coming back.

Compelling content doesn’t have to just be in article or sales copy form. There are other ways to create quality content and keep the reader wanting to learn more about your product or service.

Non-text options to add to your website:

• Graphics and Pictures
• Videos
• Podcasts
• An Interactive Forum
• Outside Links
• Online Games
• eBooks for Download
• Testimonials
• Newsletters

The more compelling, quality content you have to offer, the longer amount of time your visitor will spend on your website. The more interactive the site is, the more someone will recommend the site to a friend. Quality content and compelling text and visuals will not only make your site stand out amongst the rest; it will solidify your place in your market.

Networking Skills: What to do with all Those Business Contacts

You finally made it to a local networking event and met some contacts, now what? Assuming you connected with people that you can help or that help you, now you need a plan of action. Don’t wait until next week or next month to contact them. Make it a point right after your event to write a note to your new acquaintances. Be sure to set a time and date you will call or email them. Schedule it in your calendar and on your phone. You want to contact at least 2 people a day. Be sure to take notes when talking to them on the phone or in person.

After you contact them for the first time, set up an additional appointment. It doesn’t have to be for lunch, it can just be a brief phone call, a text message or even a short email. What you want to do now is find out the answers to the following questions.

What are your personal values? – Knowing this will help you stay true to your business mission and your personal goals. It will also help you identify these qualities in your prospective business associates.

What do you want from this contact? – Keeping your personal values in mind, what are you looking for with regards to working with this contact? If the relationship turns into a contract what will your pay be? How can you work together?

What does your contact want from you? It is important to note that a relationship goes both ways. It gives and it takes so at times you’ll be giving the support and assistance and at other times your contact will. How can your contact best be served through your business knowledge?

What can you offer your contact? What does your business do that will help your contact move forward in his or her business? Will you charge for this or will it be a mentoring relationship?

What can your contact offer you? What qualities does your contact have that your business can use to move forward in the next year or two? Will you pay for their service or can you work out a joint venture partnership where both parties get what they want?

Once you have the answers to all of these questions you’ll want to maintain a spreadsheet for this. You’ll create a section for each contact and periodically check up on them. Update your goals every quarter to make sure you are both still meeting each other’s needs.

Networking is something you should be doing as a regular part of building your business. You never know when someone you know will be the contact that brings about your next big contract or project. Don’t wait until you need to “network”, that is, when your client base is dried up. Maintain these relationships as though they are your friends and you will reap the rewards when the time comes for you to utilize their expertise in a job.

Virtual Event Etiquette — 10 Tips to have a successful event

1. Send a reminder — Send every registered participant a reminder about the event at least the day before and an hour or so before the event. By sending a reminder you ensure better attendance to the event. People have very busy lives, get mixed up with time changes, and just simply forget about things even when they paid for it. Reminders are really nice and help clear up misunderstandings about time zones.

2. Send an agenda — In your last reminder sending an agenda or menu of what is going to happen during the event is a very nice added special touch that can create anticipation and excitement for the event. It can also help attendees think of questions and encourage them to invite more people if there are last minute sign ups.

3. Greet participants upon arrival — If you had an in person event you would stand at the door and greet visitors as they came in the meeting room. It is important that you, or someone assigned to do so, greets attendees as they come into the conference room. This will make them feel included and avoid the tendency for people to just click in, and click out if they don’t know what is going on.

4. Explain the technology — Before the virtual event officially begins but most of the attendees have arrived take the time to explain the technology to them. Just a quick couple of minutes explaining how to mute a microphone, raise your hand to speak, and how things should look can go far in making attendees comfortable.

5. Explain how the event will proceed — When the event officially starts take time at the beginning to go over the order of events according to the agenda. This will be a way to prepare yourself, the speakers and attendees about how everything will proceed.

6. Introduce each speaker/presenter — Always have a clear transition to the speakers after the Q & A time. Either have the speaker introduce the next person or, most effective, the host should introduce the next presenter.

7. Keep track of time — Someone should be keeping track of time, it is important to keep the event running smoothly on time so that everyone has plenty of time to do their planned presentations. This is why practicing helps keep the time factor into consideration.

8. Allow for Q & A after each speaker/presenter — Another reason time is important is to ensure that each speaker / presenter has ample time for a Q & A session after their presentation. Most event participants report better experiences (and open their wallets more readily) when they feel heard and have their questions answered.

9. Have a clear closing of the event — Instead of just stopping the event suddenly make sure to have a planned closing that has some sort of call to action, whether that is to sign up for a newsletter, attend the next event, or to remind participants to grab their bonus materials does not matter, just make sure that a clear closing occurs.

10. Follow up — Never ignore the follow up after a virtual event. Sending attendees some bonus materials in email, a recording of the event, and thanking them for coming along with a survey that gives feedback to you so that you can do better with each event is a very important part of the entire experience.

Tips & Tools to Make Your Online Events Rock

Hosting online events is a great way to make more sales, get more leads, and take your business to the next level. Online events take some extra work, but they are more than worth it. You can even create an entirely new income stream from online events if you have something useful to tell your audience.

Use a Paid Webinar Service — Skip the free services. You want to host a professional event where your attendees aren’t inundated with advertisements. No one wants to pay for an event, and then watch advertisements flash on their screen. A couple good ones to try are and Adobe Connect Pro. If you need more attendees you might want to try which allows for 2000 attendees.

Pay for an Auto-Responder Service — One of the reasons to host a webinar is to get more leads, therefore you want each person who signs up to attend your event, or inquires about your event, to be placed on an appropriate autoresponder list. Which service you use will probably depend on which webinar service you use.

Create a Custom Sales Page — Take the time to make your sales page stand out from the rest of your site for your events. The sales page should let your audience know why they should attend. Remember that your audience wants to know what’s in it for them. Address their fears, and tell them how your event will solve their problems.

Use A Simple Payment Processor — People click away if paying for the event is too complicated. Try to choose an all in one system that easily allows sign up for the event, allows the person to pay, and puts them on your autoresponder list at the same time. Don’t make them jump through too many hoops if you want people to attend.

Provide PDF Handouts — When someone signs up for your event and pays, immediately send them the agenda for the event, reading suggestions, and other handouts via the autoresponder, so that you can create excitement and buzz for your event. An excited guest will tell others about your event, thus helping you sell more tickets.

Have a Plan — Create a theme for your event and know why you’re doing it. What do you hope to accomplish outside of earning money. Why will your audience come to your event? If you can’t answer that, it will be hard to create a plan. A plan will ensure that your event goes off without a hitch.

Know Your Audience — This should really go first. If you don’t know who your audience is, if you can’t describe their deepest fears and joys, it will be hard to know what kind of event to have, and it will be hard to attract your audience to your event.

Finally, it’s important to practice, practice, practice. Things can go wrong with technology so you need to understand the tools you choose to use. Plus, by practicing the delivery you’ll have a better chance of making an impact on your audience.

Driving Your Target Market To Your Virtual Event

When you have put a lot of effort into planning a virtual event you want to make sure that people show up, but you don’t just want anyone at your virtual event, you want your target audience to show up at your virtual event. Marketing your virtual event with the results in mind will go far in ensuring that the right participants show up. You can do this by making sure every aspect of your promotion considers that target market.

Team Members — Likely you’ll have a team in mind to work with whether they are JV partners, or whether they are contractors, it takes a team to pull off an awesomely effective virtual event. Team members should all be on the same page at every step of the event from start up through to follow up.

Have regular meetings regarding planning, marketing, and conducting the event. Everyone should have the same message to the same audience but to their own special niche and with their own unique spin.

All team members should market the event with similar materials to various niches of the same target market. Keeping a unified marketing message will result in the right audience showing up to your event.

Speakers — Your speakers should have experience within your industry, or present a unique perspective to your target audience, as well as offer something useful to them. Ideally. they will put forward related and complementary services and not be direct competitors to you.

For instance, if you are a Life Coach that offers coaching to women transitioning to working from home, it is likely you will not want to invite other Life Coaches that offer the same exact service. Rather, you invite speakers who offer another kind of service to your client base, such as a speaker who offers tools and or services to help your client accomplish the goals developed in coaching.

Every speaker should market the event to their own audience using the information you designed for them to promote the event. Naturally, they will put their unique spin on the marketing material but using quality, cohesive marketing messages will ensure that your target market that resides within their market, comes to the event. Make this part of your contract with the speaker. In return, you will promote that they will be speaking and this will give them traffic to their own site and information.

Sponsors — The people who sponsor your event, should offer related and complementary tools and services to your niche. They should again, not be direct competitors, but they should still be of interest to your target audience. The sponsors’ advertising and information should flow well with your event’s color scheme, logo and message and not compete with you directly.

Sponsorships should also be limited. If you offer too many spots, your advertising and conference room will be cluttered. Also, if you have too many the sponsor might not get anything out of it, and won’t want to sponsor your event again. You want to keep sponsorships limited so that enough of your participants purchase from your sponsor to make it worthwhile to your sponsor later. Sponsors should be proud to have been chosen to be a sponsor of your event enough that they will announce it to their lists. This can be part of your sponsorship agreement, again they should use your thought out advertising message along with their own unique spin.

5 Similarities Between Direct Mail Marketing & Email Marketing

As an online business owner, you have no doubt heard this common phrase: “The money is in the list.” Sure, you may have a super awesome product to sell and you might have a steady stream of traffic to your website but your email list is where your prospects and paying customers are found. These are the people who will likely buy from you in the future.

The same is true of a direct mail list. People who respond to your direct mail campaigns are placed on your prospect list. Those who follow through with a purchase are placed on your customer list. Both of these lists should be cared for and nurtured to encourage future sales.

If you already spend time developing relationships with those on your email list, it’s time to spread out and do some offline marketing using direct mail tactics. What better way to bring awareness to your website!

Here are some other ways email marketing and direct mail marketing are similar:

1. Knowing your audience is vitally important. What does your target market want or need? What problem do they have that you can fix for them? How old are they? What types of jobs do they hold? This is all part of marketing research that you should have done prior to starting your website.

Here’s a simple example of NOT knowing your market: if a lawn care company sends direct mail postcards to an apartment complex with 200 tenants, is that a good use of their money? Of course not! Apartment tenants don’t cut their own grass so there’s no need to market to them.

2. Be creative. Creative copywriting will get more of a response than generic wording. People are constantly spammed with email so your subject line needs to jump out at them, compelling them to open the email and read your message.

Likewise, your direct mail headline has to compel the same type of reaction, that your product or service is something they can’t live without.

3. Add a call to action. Don’t be subtle. Tell your reader exactly what you want them to do next. Subscribe to your online newsletter; visit your website; buy your product. Never be afraid to ask for the sale. If you have truly targeted your audience, then your product or service can help your market and they just need a little push from you to complete the sale.

4. Make a valuable and relevant offer. This relates back to knowing your audience. Sending baby coupons to a list whose kids are in high school will likely backfire but sending a florist coupon to men near Valentine’s Day could be a hit.

Also, be careful with your copywriting when stating the value of a coupon. Is it better to save $50 or 10%? Of course, it depends on the cost of the item but don’t leave your customers guessing. Tell your readers exactly how much they will save in dollars and if you beat the competition, you’ll have more visitors to your website.

5. Deliver what you promise. If you say in your email subject line that a money saving coupon is inside, there better be a link to that coupon, as promised. If you send a direct mail piece promising a certain discounted product, you better have enough in stock to satisfy demand. Good customer service goes a long way to getting good word-of-mouth advertising.

Email marketing and direct mail marketing can easily work in tandem when it comes to building brand awareness for your online business. Just remember that it takes a certain number of exposures before people typically buy, so don’t end either campaign too early.

Business Networking: How to Create a Stellar 30 Second Pitch

Sales people have known the effectiveness of compacting what they have to offer in a thirty second speech. This is known as an elevator speech. The name derives from the fact that you have a very limited time to pitch your sale so you need to get to the point quickly as if you’re riding on an elevator.

The purpose of a 30 second pitch is to make a powerful first impression. You want to highlight a key accomplishment and at the same time make a dramatic impact on your client. You want them to ask you for more information.

Here is a simple 4 step process that you can use to create your own 30 second pitch. Remember your purpose is to present yourself in a way that meets a specific need of your contact.

Step 1: Know Your Objective
Knowing what you want out of a relationship will help you craft your pitch. Do you need more transcription clients? Then keep this in mind while you write.

What key value, strength, accomplishment or skill do you offer that will benefit your potential client and meet your objective? Choose something that shows your expertise in a positive way.

Step 2: Give an Example
Based on your objective (gain more transcription clients) use a personal example of how you displayed this. Choose an example that is real, dramatic and that evokes emotion. You want to touch the heart of the person you are talking to.

Step 3: What was the Result
How did your skill or value help you in the situation you found yourself in? Did you increase sales by 30%? Did you supervise 30 employees? You want to use percentages, numbers or dollar amounts if possible to emphasize your claim. It helps your contact see what you do in a tangible way.

Step 4: Match the Needs of Your Client
What are your client’s needs and goals? Once you know this you can craft the pitch to meet it. This is where you make your call to action. The ball is now in their court and it is up to them to play the next move.

Example of a 30 second pitch:
I am dedicated to meeting deadlines and customer satisfaction. For example, as a virtual assistant I was able to manage my client’s customers over the busy holiday rush which resulted in a 38% increase in sales.

Now that you have an idea of what your speech looks like, it’s time to cut it apart. You need to condense this into 2 – 3 sentences or better yet, one sentence.

Your speech is all nice and compact, now it is time for you to practice it. Say it out loud over and over again until you believe it. Feel comfortable with the words as they come out of your mouth. Speak in a gentle tone yet don’t make it pitchy or high. You want to come across as a confident businessperson who knows what they want and what they can do to help others get what they want.

Next time you are in a situation where you need to introduce yourself to a potential client or business acquaintance have your pitch ready. Remember not all businesses and clients are the same. Each needs something different. Try to make more than one pitch statement so you have different ones to meet a number of needs.

Free iPhone apps and mobile pay per click ads

A great way to make money and expand your brand is to create or have created a useful or fun iPhone app. iPhone apps are the most popular and the easiest to make money with. The barrier to entry with a good iPhone app is low, and you can choose to give away your ads free using pay per click ads to make money, or you can sell your app, or even do a combination of both. It’s up to you on how you decide to make money.

As discussed, you can make money by offering a paid app or you can offer free applications and make money via advertising. Mobile pay per click advertising is just like pay per click ads on your website or blog, except that they are accessed via your iPhone mobile app. There are several companies and advertising networks that offer mobile pay per click advertising. — This company is the first ever completely mobile advertising network. You can monetize your applications easily by signing up and following their instructions. If you’ve hired a developer you may need to work with them to ensure that the code is set up properly. You’ll have real time metrics reporting and more with

Google Mobile — You’re already familiar with Google Ads, this is Google, only mobile. They offer the same cost per basis model on mobile devices that they offer on websites and blogs. AdSense for mobile content is just like AdSense for content. Simply sign up with Google and follow the instructions. Google offers many ways to review your metrics.

The important thing is to find an advertising company or network that you enjoy working with and pays a fair percentage while being easy to work with. At first, you won’t have any stats to work with so it needs to be an advertising network that does not have hit requirements. Making money with free iPhone apps can be an excellent way to add a new revenue stream to your income.

After creating your mobile application and deciding that you’ll run ads with the application it is important to develop a good keyword list that will bring up the kind of ads your target market, and those who would use your application the incentive to click on the ads. You only get paid when someone clicks on the ads when you engage in pay per click advertising. So start with a good list of keywords.

You can use Google’s Keyword Tool to find the right keywords within your niche, or you can use a paid keyword tool of some kind but it is important to use valid research to determine effective money making keywords for your iPhone mobile pay per click campaign. Just guessing simply won’t cut it. Do your due diligence and conduct some research to get the best keywords. Having the best keywords will result in having a larger return on investment.

Once you’ve made all these choices then the next thing to do is market your app. You can offer the app for free via iTunes, you can offer it as an incentive when purchasing from you, or simply list it in the mobile app director on iTunes. Make sure that you have a great look, using your colors and logo, and mention your new app wherever you can, in blogs, on message boards, and across all your marketing channels.

Add writing services to your online offerings for fast cash

If you have an online business in which you are hoping to earn passive income, it can take awhile. It’s totally doable, but it’s not going to happen overnight. The reason most online businesses fail isn’t due to a bad idea, it’s due to the entrepreneur underestimating how long it will take to make money, and how much it will cost to become profitable. Every business you start costs money to get off the ground, that’s a given, but some businesses take longer in which to make a profit than others.

A really great way to add to your income without adding an expense is to start providing a service that is needed, that you already know how to do, and already have the equipment to accomplish. As an Internet marketer you are likely to already be writing content for yourself, or you’re outsourcing it, and paying someone else to do it. No matter what, everyone who runs a business must have content.

Regardless of how you are populating your websites, blogs, and online real-estate with content, you can add the service and do it for others. Even if you outsource. Why? Because, most writers will cut their rates a bit if you are ordering more. Simply mark up by 1.5 anything you outsource, and manage the writing others do in order to add this service to your offerings. Remember to edit each project yourself to ensure that the quality is good before passing it on to the client. Even though outsourcing is a perfectly legitimate way to offer a service, your reputation depends on giving your clients topnotch content.

Alternatively, if you normally write your own content, start actually writing the content for others. If you can do it for yourself, you can do it for others. Try not to offer content in your own niche. Instead, offer content in another niche that you know you can write intelligently about without much research. In terms of content, time is money. It’s important to charge not only according to page, but according to the amount of research you must do for each topic. If you take 30 minutes to write a well-written, 500 word article, charge accordingly.

You can start writing for others very easily by using a service such as You already have proof on your various websites that you have writing talent, use those as examples, create a price list, and then start on to get your foot in the door. Get on sites like and offer to take over-flow for other writers. It is instant money in your PayPal account when you take over-flow. Yes, the prices are low when you subcontract, but generally the writing is simple keyword rich content that takes very little time to write.

Once you have that income, you can turn around and spend it on your regular business, thus pushing your business that much faster toward profitability. Avoid temptation to spend it on other things because you must stick to your goals to advance your actual business toward profitability. It is all too easy to get sidetracked into providing services full-time, but this is not your goal. Never consider the money as anything but what it should be, money to finance your business, if you want to make your non-service based online business a success.

21 Best StumbleUpon Tips

So you’re getting started with StumbleUpon, and you’d like to make the most of your Stumbling experience. Good for you, for being concerned with starting off on the right foot. There are definitely things that you can do to increase your chances of becoming popular through stumbling. Let’s take a look at 21 of the best all-time tips:

1. Remember that your mission is to be yourself. So only stumble sites that you are genuinely interested in.

2. If your website or blog is all about photography, make your photos big enough to stun people with their detail, contrast and fascinating subject matter. Don’t worry about bandwidth.

3. If your website or blog is all about photography or art, keep the background colors neutral – let the images speak loudly for themselves.

4. If your website or blog is about information, make sure the visuals don’t distract. Focus on your headlines and first paragraphs instead.

5. Use the Related Posts plug-in to provide readers with more valuable content – from you.

6. Make sure you submit your own site pages, or new ones from others you’ve discovered, with accurate tags.

7. Send your own pages, via StumbleUpon, to your friends.

8. Submit your best work (i.e., specific pages, perhaps not highlighted on your site but buried deep within) to StumbleUpon

9. Don’t submit your own stuff daily – that’s a sure-fire way to send up a red flag and possibly get your site banned.

10. Be selective about who you add: Quantity is not better than quality.

11. Don’t befriend someone and then ignore them. Remember, all relationships need to be nurtured!

12. Thank people who compliment you or stumble your sites. Everyone appreciates courtesy.

13. Don’t neglect your other social marketing – but why not do it via StumbleUpon (it’s one-click easy!)

14. When checking out another Stumbler’s profile, pay attention to your Similarity Meter (located in the right-hand sidebar)

15. Use your “info” toolbar button to see site reviews – and leave your own

16. Subscribe to people who you are really compatible with via content – click the green “Subscribe” button in the upper right corner or send them a message

17. Create a StumbleUpon group and stumble each other’s best links.

18. Stumble people who stumble you – if you find their content valuable, give it a thumbs up (but don’t be indiscriminate!)

19. Review StumbleUpon profiles of those whose sites you’re interested in

20. Stumblers love dynamic photos. Occasionally include one (relevant to your blog subject, of course) – even if normally you focus only on text information.

21. Don’t forget to add a StumbleUpon button to your blog or website!

Finally remember that most of all, StumbleUpon is all about entertainment. Keep your heavy-duty business report for your LinkedIn contacts… and let StumbleUpon help you develop your “lighter” side. It’s a bit of an art form to learn to mix business with personal in a way that feels natural to both you and your reader – but letting that spark of personality shine through is ultimately your biggest social networking advantage.

Happy Stumbling!