Archive | Business as Usual

29 July 2014 ~ 0 Comments

How the masters engage their audience to get massive results

Regardless of how you choose to “build your list” there are certain techniques that are essential to driving response rates, and results.  As many people shift from traditional email list systems to the social sphere, email is still the most trusted form of online communication (next to the website itself).. but many people feel their email series isn’t engaging their members like social does, however the same principles actually apply to both and have been bringing high engagement rates across various types of media.

Here are some tips that will increase engagement, reduce unsubscribe rates, and keep your customers coming back.

Create a Habit

The #1 tool for engagement is creating a behavior pattern.  Maintain consistency in the type and frequency of content so your audience can know when to look for your email, blog post, or social media posts.  Make sure your content is generally within the realm of the originating keywords so that you are on topic with your audience.  Create an expectation from your reader to seek out future & even past postings.

Be Unique

Always when sending your messages, make sure it is you.  Put some of your own language, way of speaking, mannerisms, and even perspectives in to your emails.  Don’t be afraid to offend because speaking the language of your supporters creates stronger loyalty and respect than you had of the ones who may be offended.  Your audience has learned to ignore bots and form letters and are worth the time of creating genuine, unique content with your own perspective.  It doesn’t matter if you can’t spell correctly – people will respect that it is an obvious person doing the work.

Provide Content

The key to generating sales using your social media and email campaigns is to not sell at all.  Provide real, actionable content to your audience.  If you just send them sales messages they will easily learn to ignore your emails, or even unsubscribe.  Providing content that they want and can use, will leave them searching and waiting for your next email.  Build a level of trust, respect, and loyalty that will inspire them to seek out your products.  On the rare occasions you DO try and directly sell them something, do it in a way that really shows the value of the product.  Post it in a way that explains how they can use it to solve a problem that you know they face (because you know them by now, and the people who are still reading weekly are narrowed down to a focused, responsive group).  Continue also to follow up with them about this product, and how they can continue to use it in future posts or emails, expanding the value of their purchase.

Create Reciprocation

Make sure you have plenty of opportunities for your audience to reach back to you, connect with you, to share their experiences and knowledge with you.  Use this opportunity to create real connections with your audience, and better learn about your audience so you can create more tailored content.  Often times more people are likely to respond via email than social media, unless you ask a direct question.

Leverage Yourself

I’ll leave you with this last key.. make sure you are using your resources of one list, to expand into the other.  The way you use Pinterest is not the same way you’ll use Facebook, so while you are creating unique content for each platform, you may have people in your audience who found you on a site they don’t regularly use, and simply informing them so they can engage with you on their preferred platform.  Take note though that these posts will often come across as sales messages so make sure to keep them few and far between.

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12 June 2014 ~ 4 Comments

How to know if you are getting work done, or just keeping busy…

 In a modern world we are bombarded by interaction, communication, and stimuli.  In an attempt to stand out, and build loyalty, some mediums use gamification methods of points, badges, and leaderboards to create emotional and mental responses associated with the intrinsic values of success and accomplishment, but are you really getting anything done?

I know that I personally have spent entire days in conversation and social media and although I may have gotten an extra 3,000 points at my favorite gizmo, I look back on the day and realize I haven’t technically accomplished much.  In a gamified world it’s easy to get caught up in the hype and fun of contests and feel like you are actually achieving quite a lot, but is it really helping you reach your goals?

Here are a few steps you can take when you are completing tasks that may help you decide if you are actually accomplishing something, or just keeping busy.

Set Goals

The easiest way is to set a goal for yourself.  What is it you are trying to accomplish?  Now when you are completing tasks, you can ask yourself. ‘Is this helping me achieve my goals?’  It can also help you form your day by creating an outline of what you need to do that will help you achieve your goals, and limiting yourself to just those tasks.

Be Selfish

I’m not saying you have to be ME ME ME, but when you are completing something.. ask yourself, what’s in it for me?  Is what I am doing actually benefiting me in a real, meaningful, way?  Or am I being mentally tricked into benefiting another content creator or service provider?  You don’t have to do everything for you, in fact I’ve found my greatest joys have come from being able to help other people — but even in those cases, helping others can be extremely self serving.. is what you are doing something that is, or may in the future be, benefiting you? Or are you just keeping busy consuming content?

Create a Process

Breaking down your goals into small steps can help you get through day to day tasks with quick efficiency, and skip out on what makes you FEEL accomplished, but really isn’t doing anything.  With so much on the internet gamified (some are very sneaky about it) it’s easy to feel accomplished by earning a few points, getting new followers, or collecting a couple widgets, but defining your process and creating a list of tasks you want to accomplish for the day can help you make sure you achieve what needs to be done.

Make a to do list

Starting a day or week off with a list of what you’d like to accomplish over that period of time.  This is a simple process that almost feels pretty remedial while you are doing it, but it can do a lot for helping you to stay on task and being able to mark things off the list can make you feel accomplished, creating a rush that gets you craving to accomplish more.

Make a done list

A great exercise is at the end of each day (or throughout the day) write a ‘done’ list of the things you have accomplished that day, go through your list and see how many of these things actually aligned with your original goals, this will help you reflect on the things you do and realize the decisions you are making ‘on the fly.’  Sometimes just writing it down and looking over the things you have done, and how in line they are with your goals, can help you be more aware of how you are spending your time.

 

Many of us who are self employed, or trying to start a small business can feel like we’ve spent the entire 16+ hour day working, but sometime’s it can be difficult to measure how much you REALLY accomplished during that time… are you getting things done, or just staying busy?

I’m not saying to give up your favorite game or your social hour, but without a clear schedule and alignment of your goals, these things can quickly begin to take over, and many websites have become very good at making a mindless activity feel like an accomplishment.  Following these simple steps can help you work more efficiently, actually creating even more time for your favorite entertaining tasks.

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