Hot Links Friday: Rules, Bridesmaid, People Who Make Money, Social Media & SEO

social-media-seo(So I want to apologize for my mistakes. Yes, I know…you guys are mad at me because you wanted to see this weeks Hot Links but you weren’t able to.

I made a mistake and I thought the post was already scheduled automatically.)

Hot Links Friday

I spent a lot of time reading on the web and looking for great content for you folks to consume over the weekend so you can improve you small business revenue, productivity and hopefully success.

This week I did find some random post around the web, but I gotta tell you that most of the good stuff I found in one blog. I think you’ll find some great snippets in between all these posts from QuickSprout and be able to apply some of them to your own small businesses.

Continue…

Six Ways to Grow a Successful Email List with Email Marketing

six-email-marketing-listEver since I started writing this Skills 2 Money series we’ve talked about key marketing concepts and lead generation. Over the past week the focus was mostly on e-mail marketing and converting leads.

That’s all great and dandy but what good is it, if we’re NOT building a relationship our list and nurturing it at the same time.

Yes…this takes time, effort, and patience. But it’s what we need to do if we want to start getting consumers to pull out their Mastercards, Amex’s, and Visssssa’s to buy our stuff.

If this sound to complicated and time consuming, no worries. When you start your e-mail marketing campaign it will start smoothing out. Sending emails doesn’t have to be complicated. Actually short messages work better on email, so let’s do this.

Fact: According to the Direct Marketing Association email marketing will return $43 per dollar invested. And no other marketing is that effective.

Six Ways to Build Your Email List

Consistent Communication

With so many companies, bloggers, marketers having lists out there, you might not be the only person trying to get in their inbox. Keeping on top of their inbox, keeps you on top of their mind. Next time they need someone in your field, guess who their gonna call first? The person who sent that boring, long email months ago, or the one who’s been giving me great tips, valuable information, and staying in contact with me on a weekly basis?

Pretty up those email

Branding isn’t everything, but it’s something. When I say think of a big Yellow M with and a clown…What are you thinking of? Branding matters (thank you Pamela Wilson). Use images, graphics, colors, logos whatever you got to stay memorable to your prospects. Not only does it build trust, but makes you unique and separate you from the rest.

Be Human

A great way to start building a relationship is by fostering a personal connection. A big reason reason to why people buy Apple(™) products is not because their so good, but because of what they believe in and what they stand for. Offering the latest news, updates, photos, links and personal stories humanizes you and builds trust. But always remind them of your products and services.

Customize it to Their Needs

Not every one of your leads is going to have the same purposes and attitude. Try sending out different messages to a group. For example, ask them: what are you struggling with now? What can I do to help you right now? Hey if you can figure out what their age, sex, and where they live, you can really tailor the message. See the power of email?

Collect the data

A big mistake noobies make is they just send away and don’t analyze. By using a good email service provider, you can get data on how many people opened your email, how many clicked on your links, retweeted, etc…This give you the power to know what people liked and how to keep your list happy.

Grab them Everywhere

That’s right! Anywhere and everywhere you can have your forms is important. Unless getting more leads isn’t your goal. On your website try to make it easy for people to see email forms. Using complementary colors to attract attention to your forms works great.

Don’t forget that it’s not all about the money. These are peoples time and information you’re getting.

They are real people with real names, don’t waste their valuable time, and don’t fill their inboxes with spam.

If they’ve given you permission to contact them, the least you can do is respect that relationship. These are just six ways you can build and nurture a successful email list.

Everyone one of these tips has helped me grow my lists exponentially and I know if you apply these they will do the same for you.

Is there a reason why you haven’t used email marketing? Let me know in the comments.

Hot Links Friday: CTAs, Small Businesses on Twitter, and other Meaty Stuff

calls-to-actionIt’s finally here, TGIF the day you’ve been “excitedly” waiting all week. If you’re new here, just to let you know we do these every friday.

Okay, not EVERY friday, but we have since the last two weeks.

It’s a pretty basic series, since I know a lot of you are busy running your cool bizzznesssses, and don’t have the time to be surfing around the web like I do for awesome content.

I bookmark it and save it for Fridays, so you can enjoy.

This week I ran into some great content that would benefit your small business a ton.

First one is actually comes from the blog of a online tool I’m going to start using here and other of my small businesses. If you’re interested in the company it’s SlideDeck.

This Friday’s Hot Links

Six Tips For a Stronger Call to Action

I’ve been guilty of not having strong calls-to-action in my blog. Reading this was a like a refresher and reminder that I need to work on tweaking this site, so-you-my-friend can start doing stuff I want you to do on my blog.

I’m only playing with you.

But the truth is that it’s important to have them, because that’s just the way our brains work. It is proven that calls to action work. See for yourself!.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Can Small Businesses Be Heard On Twitter?

Anytime Gary Vay-ner-chuk speaks I listen. I love this guy, for real how can you not? But I’m not going to talk more about him. Gary makes a great point about small businesses and HOW they are missing the point.

He’s been saying this all along but it seems like people still don’t get social media. My message to them is LISTEN to this post.

Sorry to be so obvious, but no really, go watch this post. If you haven’t used twitter or don’t get it, you might learn a thing or two from Gary.

How To Calculate Lifetime Value – The Infographic

All of you by now probably know how much I love infographics. I don’t know they just work for me. I’m sure they do for some of you. They’re easy to digest and they’re not BORING like this post, written about the same topic.
You can choose boring, long and confusing or cool, fun and engaging?

8 Ways To Use Your Blog To Improve Your Business

Blogging, blogging and more blogging. I know you can’t get enough of it. They talk about it in every corner of the web. But what can you do, it’s what people want and you’re just gonna have to give-to-them.

It’s sad to see that still a big percentage of businesses don’t use a blog to improve their business.

One more Friday that comes to an end. Okay folks, I have to go now.

Get your learning on today, so next week you can tweak (if you have to) a few things to your business. Then see some massive results and hopefully say thank you Wilson for that post you shared with me, it made me a trillion bucks.

Alright, it probably won’t make you a trillion buck, but hey they might improve your conversions, you might connect with new people, who knows I just hope they’re valuable to you.

Don’t forget before you leave to tweet this and join the newsletter to get updates.

Thank you!

Remember, if you have other cool link to share, leave them in the comments as long as they’re not spam.

Quick Tip: Where Should My Small Business Be Present Online?

I know that if you’re a small business owner, this question has been coming up a lot. Let me ask you a question, well actually a couple of them:

Have you ever looked for recommendations of a product online, for example, Twitter, Google, Facebook, Youtube?

If you at least said “yes” to one of these, then there’s the answer to your question. Don’t you think that if you’re doing it, your customers are too? Of course they are, they think, act, and buy just like you do. Most people research on Google before they buy a product these days.

Or they ask a friend on Twitter or Facebook what they think about the product if they’ve bought it already. Actually a lot of people buy stuff now because they’ve posted it on Facebook to begin with, they saw their post and went and bought it.

I know there’s to many different social networks to start with and you’re just probably wondering where to put all your energy and effort first without wasting any time.

It seems to difficult to maintain a presence on all of these while achieving the same success.

I want to help you focus on the ones that matter at the moment. Here are the most popular social networks that are widely recognized and used by the majority of your customers:

  • Youtube (570+ million users)
  • Twitter (200+ million users)
  • Facebook (750+ million users)
  • LinkedIn (100+ million users)

Are you on any of these yet? If you’re not yet and you have a small business, you’re missing a huge opportunity to grow your business.