Do You Need to Boost Your Marketing Efforts?

help“I can do that all by myself.”

“I don’t need any help!”

These are all things I said when I first got into this business. I thought I could do it all and if I needed any help, Google was my friend.

Does this sound familiar to you?

Then, just like in life, especially growing up, I knew I couldn’t do it all on my own…as much as I wanted to. I needed help and Google wasn’t always the friend that gave me the RIGHT answer. Not all the time, anyway!

That’s when I sought out those who already had the experience and knowledge I didn’t. Then, I took what they gave me and used it to build things out for success.

Now, content marketing isn’t the only area people need help. It can range from losing weight (which I actually know a bit about now, too) to how cook a gourmet meal. It all takes practice, yes, but sooner or later, you might ask a friend, parent, coworker or other that has more experience and knowledge on the subject.

I know; you can see these people are “coaches,” right?

True, but some don’t see it that way – they just see it as getting to know what your problem is and helping you solve it.

That’s what I think, too.

Now, don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying coaches are bad or anything. I have a few coaches who helped me in different parts of my life.

That’s why I thought about how could I help more people out, outside of my digital marketing services. Sure, I do something similar to this in my packaged plans, but not JUST this.

That’s when I got the idea to offer it as a separate service to give others some help, without having to buy the entire enchilada upfront.

I mean, really, would you want to buy a whole strategy, copywriting, blogging and whatever else package, just to get some help talking through your problem and finding out what you ACTUALLY need?

Yeah, I didn’t think so.

So, here it is. I’ve decided to call these sessions “marketing talks.” It’s a way for me talk to you, one-on-one, talk about your business problems and come up with the steps you need to solve them. It’s as simple as that.

If you want to find out more about these sessions, just click the link below and I’ll give you all the info and a way you can book your session right away.

http://www.georgepasswater.com/marketing-talks-coaching

 

Image credit: marc falardeau

Successful Content Marketing Needs a Plan

Content marketing is powerful. It works, if you do it right.Editorial Calendar

When I consult with new prospects, many just think blogging is just writing about anything that pops into your mind. Not only that, they think you can come up with your topics and write it in a matter of minutes.

Hold on there, Tex!

Sure, you can put up a blog post quick, but will it do what you expect out of it? Ah, that’s the question.

You see, to make content marketing work and bring in qualified leads to your business, you must plan ahead.

Plan ahead, you say? That’s a revelation for many…especially those who think this “blogging” or “online marketing” thing is something anyone can do. I mean it’s just writing a blog post; post a tweet or Facebook status and the leads just pour in, right?

AHHAHAHA!!

If you believe that, I have some waterfront property to sell you!

So, speaking of planning ahead, how far ahead do you plan out your blog posts? Do you know what audience your posts target? Will you use it to add to a white paper or maybe a new training class?

If you don’t know, let me introduce you to what’s called the editorial calendar. It’s nothing new. Newspapers and the like have used them for many years, but for blogging they are equally important.

Don’t know how to create one or the one you’re using now isn’t working out? No worries. I’ve created a template of the same one I use for myself and for other work, such as clients projects.

To get it, just click on the following link:

http://www.georgepasswater.com/get-editorial-calendar/

Then, you will get the resource you need for planning out that blog content and using it as part of your overall content marketing plan to bring in more leads and convert them into sales.

 

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Landing Pages: 5 Points to Remember for More Conversions

As I’ve said before, landing pages are important to your marketing mix. To truly convert your audience and get them into your funnel, you need to use a landing page. Done right, they will be a primary tool in your conversion toolbox. Now, yes, done right, they convert like crazy and get you more leads, but done wrong, you’re wasting a lot of effort on a little return.

From different clients and others I’ve seen on the web, there are many who understand how landing pages work, but don’t always do it right. Now I’ve been a part of many a project where I’ve built and even improved failing pages. Every time I have a set of questions, a checklist if you will, to go through to ensure the page is optimized correctly.

Let’s take a look at 5 of those points and see why each is important to conversion optimization for landing pages.

  1. Are you focusing on one thing? When it comes to conversion optimization for landing pages, it’s best to focus on one thing. That means removing distractions like navigation, links, etc and only focus your efforts on one thing: converting that person into a lead.
  2. Does your headline include benefits? Now one of the marks of a good headline sometimes includes benefits. Don’t try too hard, but remember why someone will look at your landing page – your headline. 
  3. Do you use bullets to spell out the benefits? When it comes to readability, you need to use bullets to highlight the benefits of your offering. Try to get 3 -4 of them on the page and really bring out the benefits in each one. 
  4. Is your landing page message clear? Think of it this way, if you had only a few seconds to convince someone to convert, would your message do it? If not, it’s time to check your messaging. 
  5. Does your CTA stand out? When it comes to the closer or the punch that’s going to convert your reader, you better make sure it stands out. That means you need to emphasis it with different coloring, bolding, background…basically anything to make it stand out and bring home that conversion.

Again, these are only 5 of the questions I go through when it comes to building out landing pages. It’s a good idea to put together your own checklist to go through when you build out landing pages to improve your conversions.

What would you add to your own landing page checklist?

Photo credit: pnash

3 Reasons to Use Buyer Personas in Your Content Marketing

Who are you writing to? What types of offers do you present in your content marketing?

If you don’t know the answers to these questions, you need to invest in nailing down who defines your target reader and/or buyer. Sure, you could just bang out content and throw it against the wall and see who reads it. Although something many might do, I know it doesn’t speak to who reads it, let alone help you generate any leads.

Now you might be saying, “All valid, but WHY do I need to use a buyer persona in my content marketing?”

3 Reasons for Buyer Personas in Content Marketing

  1. You can’t be everything to everyone: Think about it, do you know anyone who does everything for everyone and succeeds? Yeah, there are exceptions, but for the most part you can’t be everything to everyone. It’s not sound business and it hurts you when you create content.
  2. Your content will suffer: Since content marketing involves creating content, you won’t get near the impact of what you create without a buyer persona. Again, content must speak to the reader, right? If my headline, body content and closing don’t make you feel something, I’ve failed. That’s where you need to find out who you’re writing to.
  3. Readers get confused: Ok, here’s one that really speaks and I mean speaks to your readers. Imagine someone reading one of your blog posts or even a page on your web site…do they know who you’re talking to? Is your messaging confusing?Yep, if your reader gets confused, you can be sure they won’t stick around. That means they won’t share your content, recommend it AND they won’t convert into a lead. All that hard work writing content will go down the drain.

Now I’ve covered reasons why you should use a buyer persona, but wouldn’t an example of one help out? Yep, again, you’re showing your smarts. I ran across this really good example of a persona template from Barba Gago on the Content Marketing Institute’s blog. It covers everything in this post and I think it’s a great resource for anyone looking to add personas into their content marketing mix.

What other reasons can you think of to use buyer personas in your content marketing?

Image credit: sepblog

Are You Making These 3 Email Marketing Mistakes?

How many unsubscribes did you get from your email list today?

It’s normal to get some, but if you’re getting a mass exodus from your list, you might want to reconsider what you do with your email marketing.

To calm the tides of people leaving your list, let’s look at 3 mistakes you should avoid to keep more email subscribers.

1. Irrelevant content

Do your subscribers wait in anticipation for your emails? Or do your emails make your readers fall to sleep? Be sure your content is relevant to their needs and keeps them chomping at the bit for more. That means finding out what your audience wants and giving it to them.

For example, if your list is about providing tips on content marketing for improve lead generation, don’t go off and send out messages that has nothing to do with what you promised your list.

2. Email frequency

Here’s a mistake that many email marketers get wrong and costs them subscribers. Emailing too much or not enough even gets to me on the lists I subscribe to. If you send me too many emails, I can’t keep up. If you send one every few months, I forget who you are and unsubscribe.

Now, I’m not saying there’s a magical frequency that’s just right, but I believe it depends on your audience. It’s got to work for your readers. If everyday works for them with the content you deliver, so be it. Again, test the waters and see what works and avoid the dreaded flow of unsubscribes.

3. Lack of interesting content

Ok, so this mistake is simple – don’t bore your readers. If the content you put out isn’t interesting and doesn’t bring value to your list, you can expect some unsubscribes. Think about it, do you keep a TV show on that’s boring or turn it off? Exactly.

Instead, change up the angles of your content to your list. Don’t just send out the same types of stories or selling message. Learn to tell a story one day, answer questions the next and sell the next. See, now you’re changing things up, without boring your audience.

What other things could you add to this post that I left out? What’s your experience with unsubscribes and your email audience?