Posted 23rd June 2014.
A lot of focus gets put in Email Marketing on subject lines.
After all, if no one opens your email, no one is going to take action or buy.
But after opening it, if they then don’t read it or they scan it and just close it without properly reading; it’s the same end result. No action and no sales.
And frankly, making your emails readable is something even marketing experts screw up regularly as we’ll see in a few moments.
Click here to discover the 3 big mistakes and how to fix them »
Posted 16th April 2014.
On March 25th I was a guest speaker at “Event Camp 2014” in Abu Dhabi. The focus of the conference was on “hybrid events” – a new breed of conference where many speakers and delegates attend remotely.
True to the spirit of the event, I did my session from the comfort of my own home in Cheshire.
My slot was on “Content Campaigns” – using targeted marketing campaigns (in particular, using email marketing) to boost the effectiveness of events (attendance, engagement at sessions and post-event “buzz”).
Although the focus was on marketing events, the concept of content campaigns is equally applicable to marketing webinars, products or services generally.
You can watch a recording of the session here:
Click here to watch the video »
Posted 24th January 2014.
Today’s blog post is by Jen Havice, a website copywriter who specializes in creating content with personality that’s made for conversions.
Website copy. It can create trust, provide value and be the difference between making a sale and losing a prospect.
Unfortunately, too many small businesses treat their websites and the copy on them as afterthoughts.
Why? It usually comes down to time and resources. Understandable, but I’m here to tell you that it’s time for the excuses to end.
Click here to read 3 simple tips for getting your web copy to work >>
Posted 20th January 2014.
Back in January 2013 I announced by big project for the year: Project 10K. My goal: hit 10,000 subscribers by the end of the year.
I‘ve had lots of people ask about progress. So did I hit 10,000 subscribers?
Nope. Not close. I’m regularly getting about 200 or so new subscribers every month. But not nearly enough to reach my 10,000 target.
So a miserable failure? Not really: here’s why.
Click here to see what actually happened >>
Posted 17th December 2013.
Got this email from Copyblogger today.
I like Copyblogger. I think they create some good material. In fact I’ve paid for a couple of their programs.
And I think they’ve done a good job with their new branding.
However, this recent email from them (and most of the emails they send with images in) is unreadable on my iPhone as the picture shows.
Like very many emails sent with images in, if the image is bigger than the 300 or so pixels of the mobile devices screen, it will shrink the whole email to fit the screen. The result is that the text becomes far to small to read without zooming and panning (ie no one in their right mind will do it).
And since emails you’ve opened on your mobile device usually then appear as read on your desktop, you tend not to open them again.
Result = high open rates, but low genuine read rates. And no action taken on the email.
I understand why Copyblogger have gone a bit upscale and started making their emails look more branded. In Email Persuasion I make the case that for most of us, very plain formatting that makes our emails look like normal emails from friends and colleagues works best.
In Copyblogger’s case since these days they’re clearly a business rather than a person the professonalisation of their branding is understandable.
But it just shows you how tricky it is to get images to work well in emails. And since the latest stats say that more email is opened on mobile devices than desktops, it’s something you need to think about carefully before going down that route.
Posted 24th November 2013.
If you do any sort of online marketing you’ll know that one of the keys to success is a regular flow of engaging, entertaining, impactful material.
That might be in blog posts, emails, videos or podcasts. You might focus just on adding value with your content to build credibility and trust with potential clients. Or you might use your stories and examples to make your sales letters or promotions more interesting and effective.
Whatever you do, you need “stuff”. You need to be able to put pen to paper, keyboard to blog, webcam to youtube and to create material that your potential clients are going to find useful, entertaining, thought-provoking, challenging, insightful, funny, valuable, maybe even life-changing.
Doing that regularly is a big ask. If you’re anything like me you’ll have days where you sit there thinking “what on earth am I going to write about today?”.
So here are some sources of inspiration I’ve used to come up with ideas and themes for blog posts, emails and other content. At least one of these will work for you every time you’re drawing blanks.
Click here to discover the 21 Sources of Inspiration
Posted 27th September 2013.
Today’s blog post is by Peter Sandeen, Value Proposition and Conversion expert. In this article Peter walks you through how to use guest blogging as a strategy to get more visitors to your website and convert more into clients
It’s a cliché: a calendar so full of client work that you can’t take on any more work for months.
Yet, that’s what most of us want: a cliché.
There are many ways to get there. Networking, online advertising, referrals, direct mail ads, cold calling, and guest posting.
All of them can work.
And you can use more than one at a time.
But here’s how you can use guest posting to reach that cliché that some people believe to be nothing but an ancient myth.
Click here to read Peter’s practical tips on guest blogging >>
Posted 12th September 2013.
I was doing one of my favourite things in the world yesterday: grabbing a coffee and reading on my iPad (in this case, Guy Kawasaki’s book on book publishing: APE). This time my rather pleasant afternoon was interrupted by a conversation at a nearby table that I just couldn’t help listening into.
“Don’t worry, leave all that stuff to us. Barry’ll build you two or three backlinks every day and that’ll get you up to the top of Google sharpish. And we’ll knock out a blog post or two for you every week. No hassle. You don’t have to worry about any of that”.
To someone with a basic understanding of how Google works and how these days it’s got pretty darned good at ignoring (and penalising) artificial link building that sounds like a recipe for disaster.
And when you understand that the real value of blog posts isn’t about churning out mindless drivel so that you’ve “got some content” on your site, but instead can be the very best way of establishing your expertise and authority in your marketing; then your heart just sinks when you hear about someone “knocking out a blog post”.
But unfortunately, the man and two women listening seemed to lap it up. I guess it sounded like their prayers had been answered. Winning clients online seems complicated and the rules seem to change all the time. How wonderful for this nice man to say he can do it all for us and get us tons of website visitors and customers.
Of course, a few months later and a few hundreds if not thousands of pounds lighter, they might be thinking something different.
That’s why it’s so important as a professional or business owner to get yourself a basic grounding in effective marketing. Both online and offline. Outsourcing all that stuff sounds great, but unfortunately the marketing world is full of wide boys who’ll promise you the earth and bamboozle you with sensible sounding jargon. But who really don’t have a clue what they’re doing.
Your only weapon is education. Even if you’re not going to be doing any of this stuff yourself, make sure you know how it should be done so you can spot these cowboys and steer clear of them.
Image by Edmond Wells