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Wednesday, June 29, 2005

Do people truly understand content?

My theory is people don't understand the importance of content within their businesses. The people that do become the industry leaders. The rest simply exist, or eventually fizzle out and die.

I met an owner of a marketing firm today. His samples we're less than noticable. He didn't have much to show, and what he did he put together in a rush for a customer. Shouldn't you show your best work - always?

I spoke with the owner of coaching firm. Her website had a few pages that told within a few paragraphs about her business and her background. Why should I trust her? What makes her the person I need to use to achieve my own level of success? None of that was on her site.

This list could go on and on. I'm sure you've met with dozens of people yourself that simply didn't leave an impression. If you don't leave an impression, why try at all?

Monday, June 27, 2005

5 Ways To Increase The Content On Your Website

1. Create a tour of your product or services. Show people how to do business with you. Tell people why your product is important. Help people to discover the magic with your services.

2. Add a resource section. Provide links to helpful sites related to your industry, and describe why your readers need these services. Go beyond a name and a link. Include a few paragraphs describing why someone should click over and use this resource.

3. Add articles. Write an article related to your industry. Provide detailed information that's useful to the reader. Make sure you put a paragraph inviting people to copy and paste your article into their ezine or website.

4. Add testimonials. People love reading quotes from other people. And if you use audio, place audio testimonials on your pages. Include names, links to websites, and business names for more recognition and believability.

5. Add case studies. Who are your favorite clients? Ask them if you can market their business for them on your website. (What business would say no?!) Then write up a case study showing how you helped your client, and what your help has done for their business. Include photos, graphics, stories and quotes - anything to make your case study exciting and readable!

Monday, June 20, 2005

Take Away The Glamour

So many sites today are still heavy in Flash presentations. As computers and connections continue to improve, I'm sure this will only continue.

Yet do the Flash presentations bring in more prospects, and ultimately more sales?

Imagine sitting and watching a Flash presentation for 50-60 seconds. The graphics are beautiful. The images are wonderful.

Now imagine entering the site for the second time (and the third, and the fourth). The graphics begin to get a little old. All you want is information - not to sit through a 60 second presentation time after time.

Think from your customers perspective. Flash presentations are great - as a side detail. People ultimately want information. Your site begins and ends with your content. Fill it with all different types of information:

  1. articles (http://www.visionofsuccess.com/articles.shtml)
  2. sales letters (http://getknownmarketing.com/)
  3. resources (http://www.visionofsuccess.com/resources.shtml)

If you make your content incredible, your bells and whistles will make it that much easier to do business with you.


Wednesday, June 15, 2005

Pitch Everyone

I received my ezine today from Joan Stewart, ThePublicityHound.com. One of her articles was on pitching story ideas to different places. She talked about a publicist who had a French restaurant as a client. She pitched stories to all types of newspapers, including Korean, Japanese and Chinese papers. Her logic: everyone eats.

What a great story! That logic holds true in everything we do. Think about your website. Who could you promote your products and services to using that same logic? Who could you connect with and promote each other on corresponding websites? What other businesses could you connect with and build two stronger businesses together?

Sometimes you can find the answer right in front of you. You just have to take the time to look at the situation differently, or through a different set of eyes. Try it. It's amazing what you can come up with when you take a step back.


Thursday, June 09, 2005

What to blog about?

Like many people, I've been doing a lot of research on blogging. Who's blogging? What are the most popular things to blog about?

I've been spending a lot of time on Technorati's site - a search engine for blogs - and found something very interesting. The number 5 most popular search term was knitting.

While I have been doing research on business issues for months, crafters have been using blogs to interact with patterns, tips and ideas on knitting. I found patterns, kits and instructions, all easily accessible to searchers.

One thing that comes to mind is the ease of blogging. Because it's so easy to do, will it soon replace message boards and chat rooms? Blogs aren't as easy to spam as boards. Ultimately, will blogs replace websites? I've mentioned this thought before. Though I still think there is a place for both, it is an interesting thing to ponder.

Especially with people using blogs for crafting!


Friday, June 03, 2005

Word of Mouth Marketing

As the world of marketing becomes saturated, people continually look for other ways of getting their names out to the marketplace. One way that is growing by leaps and bounds is word of mouth marketing. But can you leverage word of mouth marketing in similar ways to other forms of marketing?

Yes. The idea behind word of mouth marketing is having the people that know you talk about you. But in order to get them talking about you, you have to 'feed' them the information necessary to talk about!

1. Start by becoming a recognized leader. Get your name out there - everywhere.
2. Be visible in your communities. Write. Speak. Publish.
3. Leverage your networks. What associations do you belong to? What groups are you a part of? Let the members know what you need, and ask who they know that can get you what you need next.
4. Partnerships. Find people/businesses larger than yourself, and leverage their mailing lists for joint profits. Get people talking about you!

Want to know who's talking about you? Go to Google and type in link:yourwebsite.com to find out who's linking to you.

Want to find out who's blogging about you? Go to http://www.technorati.com/ type in your URL, and see the results.

Want further information? Check out http://www.womma.org/ the Word of Mouth Marketing Association.


Thursday, June 02, 2005

Stretching your mind

Have you ever done some or tried something new, just so it stretches your mind?

I hate living in the comfort zone. Maybe that's why I've moved every 3 years of my life since I was 18 years old. Famiarity can be so boring. I love a challenge, and trying new things provides me with the challenge I'm looking for.

Since one of my goals is to become an internationally successful speaker, I realize that I need to get out of my comfort zone, and learn how to speak like the best of them. I do all right with planned speaking - but the spontaneous stuff still scares me. So I joined toastmasters.

If you've ever been in toastmasters, you understand how far you can be stretched. I've only been in toastmasters for a couple of months, but still have trouble knowing I will be put on the spot with table topics. Today was very interesting - the topic was to look at a cloud and relate it to a word such as loyalty, friendship, or respect. Very stretching experience. :)

I'm happy to report, I did just fine - I wasn't even nervous this time around.

Maybe it's time to find something new.


Wednesday, June 01, 2005

Do they talk about you on a blog?

I just found an interesting tool that will let you know if you're being listed on blogs. Go to:


and type in your website. It will show you other blogs that have listed your information. You can also type in other key words: your company name, your name, etc, and see what people are saying about you.