Why you must build a list for your business

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The Money Is In the ListThe term “the money is in the list” is so often used that it is almost a cliche, but no matter your website, it is crucially important that you build a list.

Why is it so important that you have a list?

As you develop your business one of the most important things you can do to ensure success is having a list of prospects and customers. Driving traffic to your websites can be an expensive business, so by encouraging your visitors to join your list you then have the ability to market to them again and again.

Once your customers and prospective customers are on your list it then becomes much easier to follow up with them. By sending out emails with useful information and also reminding them about your products you become a valued source and somebody that they know, like and trust. this will have the effect of building up a loyal customer base for your business. Now the person you spend so much time and money to get is no longer a one-time sale.

Once you take into account lifetime value of your customers, it becomes increasingly apparent how valuable your list will be.

when you fully understand this relationship, you will soon see the building your business list should be a main focus. The larger your list becomes, the more money will make. This is because Europe more customers to sell new products and services to and because you’re also selling to existing customers. This is a lot cheaper than having to spend additional time and money in advertising to get new customers.

So how do you start building a list?

As a business you need to have an active list of subscribers. This could be a newsletter list, a buyer’s list or a more general list and is related to your business in some way. This isn’t very hard to do and there are just a couple of basic tools they need to get going.

The three basic tools are:

  • An Autoresponder Service
  • A Web Form to sign people up to your autoresponder service
  • And depending on why people are signing up some kind of gift to encourage your visitors  to do so.

And to maximise results you should look at developing a follow-up sequence.

There are a wide range of auto response services out there. For businesses we typically recommend a company called MailChimp, although we also really like a new company called SendReach. One of the great things about SendReach is because it is still relatively new they are offering a great deal on a lifetime subscription.

There are various other autoresponders out there, but we have found those to be the best options for most businesses.

Once you have an auto responder you then need to install it on your websites and if relevant on your Facebook business page. There are various ways in which you can do this. If you are a Vashon media client then we have our own plug-ins developed for doing this such as Easy Fan Page Design and Presidential List Building Machine. Also most auto responder companies have forms that you can create inside their dashboards.

You then need to decide how you are going to encourage people to sign up for your list. Sometimes the promise of discounts on your services or an offer of upcoming special offers can be enough, but offering a downloadable report or video or even software will give you better results.

Finally to maximise the effect of the auto responder it is worthwhile to write a follow-up sequence which are a number of emails will be sent out a regular basis to your subscribers to encourage them to take some kind of action, or just to build goodwill with your subscribers.

Alternatively, you can just hire us at Vashon media and we will work with you on your auto responder, designing your forms, coming up with a strong call to action to encourage people to sign up for your mailing lists and also work with you on a strong follow-up sequence.

If you have any questions please feel free to leave a comment on this blog post and if you find it useful it would be great if you are able to share it using the social media icons below.

 

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Why Your Business Needs A Blog

[viralbait_buttons fb="yes" google="yes" twitter="yes" linkedin="yes" pinterest="yes" ]Earlier this morning I had a call from a friend wondering what was the point of blogging for their new business.

We logged into their analytics and discovered that blogging had been responsible for 300 visits to their website this month.

Of those a significant number had come from seeing the posts on Facebook and Twitter which leads on to the number one reason why your business should be blogging:

1) Your blog is the mainstay of any of your Social Media efforts. The idea behind using social media as a business is to engage with prospective and current customers. Done properly this can drive significant traffic back to your website and with the current relatively low cost of Facebook advertising it can be a very powerful solution to drive leads to your business.

There are many other reasons why you should be blogging and these are perhaps two of the main reasons

2) Your blog remains one of the most important marketing tools that your company has.  New content improves your findability in the search engines which helps to drive more targeted traffic to your website.

3) Your blog is an important part of your brand and has been proven to boost conversions and provide a positive return on your investment

When your business creates a blog, it helps to create an an individual voice for the business, or as an alternative you can get various team members to blog on the business’ behalf. This helps build rapport with your clients and customers. We believe that a properly done blog will create an atmosphere of trust and openness, which significantly improves brand loyalty, especially when done well in conjunction with other social media such as Facebook, Youtube, Pinterest and Google Plus.

The more you update your blog with new content, the more you are demonstrating your commitment and it will also encourage your customers to want to come back to visit your websites.

After your website your blog should be your main port of call on your online presence, followed by other social media channels which you should be using to drive traffic back to your site where you can then capture their information.

Do you have a blog? If not, I can help!

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The Value of Podcasting for Online Businesses

What is podcasting and how can it help my business? This is one of the questions that a lot of online business owners ask. Indeed, podcasting has grown so much as a marketing tool that it is already too significant for many business owners to ignore.

Podcasting is basically an online radio show, a way for you to get your audio message across via the Internet. Like a blog, a podcast also has its subscribers who are regularly informed when you have an update. Unlike a blog, a podcast is an audio recording, which means you will have to flex your vocal muscles and speak to the world. Literally.

Not all people are interested in reading blog post after blog post but they are more than willing to listen to podcasts because they give voice (and increased reputation) to the broadcaster. If you are a business owner, this is a good way to establish yourself as an expert in the field and promote your way to increased revenue and a larger client base.

–>> Want more ideas about how to create your own podcasts? I can help!

Don’t Miss Out On Google Places

To say search engines have evolved dramatically in the last ten years is a minor understatement.  During this time, Google has certainly been the trend setter in new developments. The goal of the company has been to redefine how search works so that users find what they are really looking for instead of a bunch of junk sites. Google Places is an example of one step taken to reach this goal.

What is Google Places? It is an internal search engine within Google‘s general search database. This internal search engine lists businesses by their geographic location. You have probably noticed Google Places without realizing it.  For example, let’s say you do a search for “Los Angeles dentist”. The search results will reveal a map with corresponding brief listings for one to seven dentists in the Los Angeles area in the middle of the first page of results. This is the Google Places system in action.

Why has Google instituted Google Places? It has determined that 97 percent of consumers search online for local businesses. By implementing this new system, consumers can find exactly what they are searching for in their area without having to scroll through a bunch of random sites that may list nothing in their locality.

If you have a local business presence, Google Places is CRITICAL for you. Need help? Call me!

What Are Facebook Ads?

Millions of people log into Facebook every day, and the ads in the sidebars will allow you to reach the right people at the right time.

–>> Facebook ads allow you to customize your demographics down to the smallest details.

You can choose to show your ad to people in a certain area or of a specific age range. Facebook shows ads to its users based on likes, dislikes and other preferences.

Although you can drill down to the specific demographics you want to target, you’ll never receive personal information about your potential customers.

You can elect to display your ads on profiles, pages and even within some applications. The possibilities and combinations in which you can put together your Facebook ad campaigns are as diverse as the people that use Facebook daily.

The site also gives you detailed information that helps you to determine what is working and, more importantly, what is not working.

If you are interested in using Facebook Ads for your business, give me a call. I can help!

YouTube – Drive Massive Traffic To Your Website

If you are running a small or a large business, using online videos you can drive direct traffic to your website. You know there are billions of videos available on YouTube. It gets approximately two hundred million clicks per day. Here you will learn how to drive potential traffic to your website using YouTube.

1. Your videos must be short in length and not more than 3 to 4 minutes.

2. Your video must contain your website URL. Place the URL at the bottom of your YouTube videos.

3. Write your keyword phrase twice in the title of your YouTube videos, if possible.

4.  Store your video in multiple directories with different titles so that same video may get good rank for certain keywords.

5. Create an attractive profile at YouTube. Similarly to Facebook, Twitter or any other social media websites an interesting user profile is a compulsory. People would like to visit your profile after watching your video to know more about you and your business.

Of course, I have a lot of other YouTube related tips I can share with you when we talk!

Using Content for SEO

Have you ever heard the phrase, “Content is king”? On the Internet, that phrase is vitally important to your business.

Content can mean a number of things from articles to blog posts to videos. The content that you distribute both on and off your site affects your reputation, search engine rankings and credibility. It is a crucial element to your marketing success.

Let’s talk about some different kinds of content that you can use for SEO purposes online:

–>> Articles: These are often articles that are distributed across the Internet with links back to your website. These links use what is called “anchor text” which is a keyword phrase that you want a page or post on your site to rank for.

–>> Videos: These can be short or long videos using screen capture software or live footage. You can put these videos on your site and even on video sharing sites like YouTube.

–>> Blog posts: These are posts that you write on your own blog with certain keywords included. You may also want to do guest blog posts on other people’s blogs as well.

There are other kinds of content that you can use to get people motivated to click back to your website. The key is being creative in your efforts to get people to visit your site.

Protect Your Reputation on Social Media

In the past, one customer’s bad experience was not a source of national headlines. An unhappy customer might share the situation with a few friends or family, but that was about it.

With the advent of social media, however, one unfortunate comment posted or retweeted millions of times on Twitter or shared through networks on Facebook can send a company reeling.

Your reputation on various social media platforms is every bit as important as a face to face interaction, if not more important. Let your customers know that what they have to say is important to you.

Brushing them off or worse, completely ignoring what customers have to say, is a sure fire way to earn a reputation as a company that cares about nothing but the bottom line.

–>> People are far more likely to share negative information with friends and family than they are to share positive information, so make sure that you

Should Businesses Use Twitter?

As the global economy continues to struggle, businesses in every sector need to look for ways not only to attract new customers, but also stay engaged with their current clients. Twitter is a social medium where those customers will often post short notes on services they have received and products they want to critique for their followers.

A business should have a presence on Twitter.  By creating an account, not only can you engage and build your customer base, but you can respond to concerns tweeted by your customers. This relationship, albeit in just a small step, shows that a company is listening and values the opinions of those who are loyal to them.

Tweeting tips, or links back to a company website with information, allows a business to be engaging, accessible and continually remind customers of their brand.  In addition, businesses can connect with other successful companies in their industry and form new relationships that may become mutually beneficial.  Twitter is free, simple, and should be a part of a businesses marketing and customer service program plan.

Many business owners are NOT using Twitter to its fullest advantage (or at all). If you are among them, give me a call to discuss how you can start making money using Twitter this week.

Selling Products or Services to Your List

One of the biggest reasons to have an email list is so that you can build relationships and credibility. It is also so that you can sell these people your products and services. Don’t be afraid to sell to your list!

–>> If you don’t sell to your prospects and clients, your competitor WILL!

How do you sell to people on your list? First, remember that you only want to SELL about 20% of the time. The other 80% of your time should be spent sending them quality information that they can use.

A list will thrive if your list members TRUST you. Spend your first few emails building that trust before you ever try to sell them anything.

You can offer information, coupons and other special deals to your list. You can also offer the products and services of other companies AND get paid to do it. This is called affiliate marketing, and I can explain exactly how to do it!

Contact me today so I can help you make extra income using your list!