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Get the most out of Twitter in 2011
by websitebymidnight.com on 

Happy New Year,

 

Our resolution is to help you get the most of out of Twitter this year. To start, we thought we'd send this note with four simple suggestions. Come on by our web site to try these out anytime! http://twitter.com

 

1) Follow your interests. We've found that the people who enjoy Twitter most tend to follow a variety of accounts: friends, family, people in their profession, local shops and events, and most importantly, people who share their passions.

 

2) Get specific. Like sports? Follow your favorite leagues, teams, players, coaches, commentators, writers and fellow fans. Love food? Follow chefs, restaurants, critics, bloggers, specialty shops and respected foodies.

 

3) Don't panic. People turn to Twitter during emergencies. Snowstorms, power outages and fires are just a few emergencies where Twitter may be helpful. Search for #hashtags and follow local civic accounts to stay informed.

 

4) Return to Twitter. There are about 200 million accounts on Twitter now - that means new interests, new voices, and new ideas every day. We offer services in seven languages, apps for most devices, and SMS worldwide.

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Measuring The Success of Your Small Business Website
by websitebymidnight.com on 
Measuring the Success of Your Small Business Website
By Joanna Ciolek | Published: April 1, 2010
 
Your web designer has just built you a great looking website and you spend all that money to promote it but are you getting a bang for your buck? Was it money well spent? Is your website effective in converting visitors into buyers?

 

Measuring the success of your website is not as easy as looking at the number of visitors, PageRank (PR) value or your position in the search engine result pages (SERP).

 

Sure, it’s nice to see a growing number of visits to your site but traffic in itself is almost useless if it doesn’t bring in leads/sales. PR does let you know how authoritative your site is, but it doesn’t provide you with any data that you can monetize and use as a baseline to drive conversions or increase retention rates. Checking SERP values offers no tangible information either, especially since Google provides results base on users past preferences and their locality.

 

No. You should really be looking at a combination of various metrics, depending on your site’s goals. Start by setting up Google Analytics and familiarize yourself with your website’s performance by setting up goals and looking at the statistics.

 
Start by defining your website’s goals!

Define what you’d like your visitor to do upon arriving to your website. Those are your website’s goals.

There are many types of goals:

  • Page views
  • Downloads
  • Subscribes
  • Forms
  • Purchases

 

Goals vary from website to website and you should really concentrate on more then just one goal. Some like to contact the business via a form, others will want to subscribe to a newsletter first, yet others will be willing to make a direct purchase.

 

One solution does not fit all.

Why monitor the progress?

Website metrics will help you

  • Define the course of your internet marketing campaign.
  • Measure the effectiveness of your SEO efforts.
  • Show you which ads, keywords, search engines and referrals deliver the highest quality traffic, target high ROI markets and market segments and understand the effects of their strategies.
  • Improve your website usability, thus conversion.
  • Show you how design and usability affect sales and ROI.
  • Allow you to compare reports before and after some alterations in the website design and structure have been made.

 

Once you understand what works and what doesn’t, you can tweak your website design or marketing strategy accordingly, improving overall performance.

 

What should you measure?

Just like goals, metrics vary from website to website. E-commerce sites have pretty clear metrics – sales. For other sites, traffic & leads may be most valuable.

 

You shouldn’t look at just a single metric but instead concentrate on a handful of measurements that are right for you and your business (depending on those goals you’ve specified).

 

The combination of metrics can help you locate parts of your site that need work. They can also pinpoint the types of marketing campaign you should be spending your budgeting dollars on.

 

Take a look at referrers – Which sites drive traffic to your website. If it’s search engines, consider the keywords that bring you the visitors most often. This is good base information for your SEO/SEM campaign and it will help you identify whether your natural search engine optimization or pay-per-click is working as you expect. For example, you may be getting visitors who search on a term you haven’t thought of, or alternatively some search phrases may be generating more visitors than you expect. You can use this knowledge tweak your SEO strategy.

 

If you are getting huge traffic spikes when you post to your blog and those spikes correlate with estimate form sign-ups, then you should focus on the blog as your marketing tool. If you get lots of return visitors from Facebook, then you need to stay active there but maybe abandon your Twitter campaign that’s been lagging behind.

 

Take a look at your site usability – What’s your bounce rate? Do your visitors stay only for few seconds or continue on to other pages?

 

Types of metrics: Business metrics

  • ROI - return on investment which is how much you got back compared to what you put into a project. If you spend $1000 on your website and earn $2000 your ROI is 200%.
  • Traffic - where are your visitors coming from, what percentage of your traffic is referred and what percentage is coming from the search engines (which ones)?
  • Leads - what’s the conversion rate for your lead generating form meaning how many visitors are actually contacting your sales department?
  • Sales - how many purchases are made compared to the number of visitors your website is receiving?
  • Other conversion – how many subscribe to your newsletter, take a survey, retweet your article, or fulfill another goal that you’ve set up?

 

Usability metrics

  • Bounce rate - Bounce rate helps identifies the % of traffic to your website that “leave instantly”. This happens for a number of reasons, from poor usability of the website to irrelevant information. While a bounce rate of 40% (70% for blogs) is considered healthy, anything above should be a concern.
  • Returning visitors – You want to see a rising number of returning visitors. It is easier to convert an existing listener than to pitch to a new one.
  • Time on page, pageviews per visit, etc. – This will tell you how relevant your website is to what your visitor is looking for, how engaging it is, how easy to navigate, how easy to convert.

 

SEO metrics

  • Link acquisition – Great content will attract not only visitors but links. Google places a great deal of importance on inbound links so you should pay attention to them as well. What matters here is not necessarily the number but quality of backlinks. You want to attract high trust and high authority links that are coming from different domains. If you aren’t, then it’s time to tweak the copy of your website.

 

Key metrics allow you to quantify results but looking at the right metrics for your business will allow you to not only grow but grow a more profitable business via your website.

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SEO PowerSuite launches Big Heart WWW Cruise
by websitebymidnight.com on 

Big Heart SEO Cruise

SEO PowerSuite launches Big Heart WWW Cruise

Big Heart is travelling from webpage to webpage and lets anyone get a 60% discount on state-of-the art SEO software.

This is the best chance to get the world-standard SEO software at a special Christmas price — and help your business enter a prosperous New Year.

Check the rules, join the cruise and claim your Christmas offer!

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Successful Brand Marketing Strategies for Internet Marketers
by websitebymidnight.com on 
by hongxing128

What are brand marketing strategies and how can implementing brand marketing strategies help an online business? Just like a bricks and mortar business, an online business also needs to suggest a positive image to the customer. Regardless of what many people believe, branding is much more than creating a company logo and using a specific color theme. Brand marketing strategies have to include the purpose, focus and image of the business.

What are brand marketing strategies and how can using brand marketing strategies help an online business? Just like a bricks and mortar business, an online business also needs to suggest a positive image to the buyer. Regardless of what many people believe, branding is much more than creating a company logo and using a specific color scheme. Brand marketing strategies have to include the purpose, focus and image of the business.

Let’s discuss some of the benefits with regards to brand marketing strategies.

Benefits of Branding:

Having your own brand helps people to remember your company as opposed to companies using a common name. Brand marketing strategies are about helping the consumer to distinguish your company focus and purpose. Consumers are more likely to turn to your business when they know what you do and what you’re all about.

Brand marketing strategies also will help you to become well recognized. People who might not yet have done business with you should still be able to recognize who you are and what you do. If they see your advertisements on the web, receive your newsletter, receive regular mailings from your company by email, etc. then you’ve established a brand identity. When the tine arrives that they need your product or service then your company will be the first to come to mind.

Using brand marketing strategies will help acquire and keep customer loyalties. It is a fact that people connect closely with brand identities. The wise consumer wants a worthy product or service from a company they know they can trust. In delivering great brand identity people tend to remember you and your company. Quite often they’ll refer family, friends and associates to you based on their level of satisfaction.

Buyers will pay for image, it’s that simple. Society is very “brand aware.” Commonly people connect certain brand names with quality and only choose to purchase certain brands for that reason. Brand marketing strategies can reward a business well when done wisely. When a consumer only wants one certain brand of a product or service, they are willing to pay anything to get it. Establishing a great brand using brand marketing strategies will give your company a superior brand image and make the consumer forget about the competition.

Brand Marketing Strategies Initial Steps Of Branding Yourself

It’s worth repeating that branding is much more than a logo and color scheme or a catchy tag line. When using brand marketing strategies there are some initial steps that need to be followed to assure a successful brand image.

Step 1: Brand Marketing Strategies Learn About the Competition

A key factor in creating a successful brand image for the network marketer is to set yourself apart from the competition. It’s important to find how the consumer sees the competition and to recognize how the competitor distinguishes themselves from others. Identifying the competitors weaknesses and strengths is also important. When the competition’s weaknesses are realized it’s much easier to learn from their weaknesses and can be an asset in helping to showcase your business in a more positive manner.

Step 2: Brand Marketing Strategies Recognize Your Strengths

Once the competition’s weaknesses are known the focus should shift to defining your own company’s strengths. Doing a target market analysis can be extremely advantageous when what is learned from it is utilized. The usefulness of this tool will be realized by confirming that your company strengths are indeed important to your target market. In knowing your company strengths and what strengths are important to your customers, you now have the ability to market these successfully to the public involving them in your branding campaign. Branding marketing strategies have to be implemented properly to work.

Step 3: Brand Marketing Strategies Be familiar with Your Customer

Getting familiar with the target market is another key branding marketing strategy not to be ignored. Find out about their spending behaviors, how frequently do they buy? Are their purchases a select few or a wider assortment of services and products. Asking these types of questions can help to better market to the consumer. Additionally finding out your target customer’s needs, standard of living, attitudes and mindsets. In discovering and working with these personality qualities another key to marketing success has been found.

Step 4: Brand Marketing Strategies Be Your Brand

Be your brand, live your brand by ensuring that your company truly expresses the brand identity you’ve established. In other words if you’ve established fast response time to customer inquires as one of your brand marketing strategies,  then you must give quick response time to your customers. Every member of the company should live your brand and be your brand for your brand marketing strategies to be useful.

How to Make Sales With Branding

After the brand marketing strategies are in place then what? When thinking of the McDonald’s brand what comes to mind? Do the golden arches come to mind or Ronald McDonald? In the same way it is important to choose a niche online and brand our business accordingly. Get recognized for doing well in I area before moving on to another. Here’re some of the things needed to sell online with branding after the brand marketing strategies have been put into place.

1)  Your own company website. This demonstrate that you’re in fact a serious entrepreneur. Nothing screams amateur more than somebody showing a replicated affiliate web page.  Your own domain hosted website is a smart brand marketing strategy.

2)  An auto responder service and opt in form are two “must haves” in brand marketing strategies. More than likely your site’s visitors won’t purchase or join on the first visit. So when they leave your site you may lose them for good unless you capture their name in an opt in form. In doing this you are able to follow up with a series of emails messages. The follow up email messages help to reinforce your brand name in your target consumers’ minds. Remembering to keep the follow up at a respectful level of persistence can win sales.

All serious entrepreneurs must have an auto responder service. In adding to this brand marketing strategy you can increase your chances of capturing visitor names by offering a free gift like a report or ebook

3)  A profile picture of yourself and online signature adds not only a personal touch to your brand marketing strategies but lets your readers realize that you are a real person.

4) Sound, if your speaking voice is pleasant then put a voice recording together with your profile picture and signature to help humanize your company website and establish a rapport with your audience. This is a great brand marketing strategy that works well for many marketers.

5)  Create a business blog. Your blog can be an add on to your main domain or if you’re working on a tight budget you can use a free blog service at least until you start to realize some profits. Every brand marketing strategy discussed here can be put into a free blog. The blog should be updated often with fresh, unique content that is relevant to your niche. The message of the blog should remain a consistent one, so off topic content should not be added. The goal is to keep the theme and message consistent. Readers of your blog can be kept updated about your blog’s content by using RSS feeds.

6) A final brand marketing strategy that will be very important to the online marketer is a domain name. A domain name can be registered and forwarded to  point to your blog if you don’t use an add on to your primary website domain. Showing your audience that you’ve registered your own domain will show them that you are serious about your business.

Brand marketing strategies should be an integral part of all online business as people do want to do business with people that they know, like and trust.

 

Linda operates an online People Search Engine is an active affiliate marketer,blogger,webmaster,author and current Super Sponsor at Acme/GDI Support Forum helping to “Pay it Forward” by helping others. She enjoys her grandchildren, 5 beloved cats,music,inspirational reading,movies,and lives with her family in beautiful Colorado Springs, CO. She has years of sales/marketing experience and holds a degree in engineering.

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Why Social Media Is Top Priority for Search Marketers
by websitebymidnight.com on 
Social will be at the center of SEO and PPC campaigns

Is 2011 set to be the “year of Facebook,” even among search marketers? Based on what US advertisers told search marketing agency Covario, it’s definitely the year of social.

Search marketers have discovered how social media marketing can help build their search engine optimization efforts, and respondents to the Covario survey said their No. 1 priority for SEO next year was integration with social media programs. According to the report, “leveraging social media for scalable link-building efforts is a major initiative for advertisers.”

Social media will also play an important part in paid search efforts next year. Search ad campaigns on sites like Facebook and LinkedIn were top of mind for nearly half of advertisers surveyed—far ahead of priorities like local search or dealing with recent changes to major search engines (for example, Google Instant and Yahoo!-Bing integration).

The report noted that major spending increases on Facebook search advertising are planned for 2011. Covario estimated many advertisers would be spending 10% to 20% of their pay-per-click budgets on Facebook next year, giving the social networking site a major share of that market. The report also indicated that rather than pulling dollars away from other paid search spending areas, these would be additions to the search budget coming from display or offline budgets instead.

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11 Creative Ways to Drive Traffic to Your Website
by websitebymidnight.com on 

By Joe Manna on November 3, 2010

11 Creative Ways to Drive Traffic to Your WebsiteSmall business owners are known for being creative and personal with their customers and prospects; however, often they desire more traffic to their website and want to know how to get more of it. I’ll share a 11 tactics that work to drive more traffic to their site, increase conversions and be able to have fun in the process.

 

Traffic is not the only thing that matters. Heck, if it was, you’d just buy a full-page ad in New York Times and expect millions of people to go to your site and buy your product and service. The difference here is making your website known in relevant circles – communities – that are interested in what you do as an entrepreneur and as a business.

 

Traffic helps, but it’s relevance and trustworthiness that moves the needle.

 

With that said, here are eleven creative ways to drive traffic to your business. Be sure to add your own if it’s not already mentioned in the comments, too!

  1. Offline Guerilla Marketing (Stickers, Leaflets, Community Boards)
    This takes a little more insight and planning than others, but is worth it. People are interested in messages that they have to research and maybe even share strange and “weird” ads. Construct a witty message that describes your business for a larger campaign. Have it printed with your website address on it on paper, stickers and distribute them in clever places. You know, like University Student Unions, light poles, sidewalks, etc. Ambiguity will likely translate into traffic; so the key is doing it in places that interested people naturally meet and greet. The bottom line is if your stuff is legit, people will spread the word naturally; otherwise, it goes into the garbage can.
  2. Participate in Discussion Forums
    Online communities are rich with very thoughtful people who methodically discuss, vet and spread ideas to each other and across the web. Communities are a great way to drive traffic because the more you find your niche and share your expertise, the more people gain trust and go to you for questions. It’s no overnight task, either, so it will take a little bit of time to survey and find a community that fits for you. Many forums on the web allow you to have a “signature” where you can plug your sites and drive traffic and SEO-juice towards your site. The key is to actually participate and earn the respect from others. Ideally, one would dedicate themselves to just a few meaningful communities.
  3. Comment on Blogs
    Don’t just plug your business; forge a good connection with blog authors by reacting/responding with good ideas to bloggers through comments. Many blogs attract thousands, even tens of thousands of views but only receive a handful of comments. Think about it. If you’re one of the few people who add to the discussion, some of those people will visit your site to find out who you are. You’ll probably start to earn the respect as a favorable commenter and get people to reply to you, effectively riding the coattails of the blogger – in a nice, expected and respectful way.
  4. Say Thank You
    Acknowledgment and support for the people who got you where you are today is a great way to drive traffic that is loyal to you. Saying thank you can be in the form of a simple web page with a picture, video or a public acknowledgment of their efforts to help you. In closing of that message, ask them to share the link with a friend if they liked it. (In hindsight, it’s not a good idea to say thank you, expecting anything back, but it’s just a thought.)
  5. Participate in Tweetchats
    Tweetchats are conversations on Twitter with a group of people who are conversing about a given subject, theme or idea. It’s easy to get started; check out this volunteer-provided schedule of on-going Twiter-based chats, find what closely matches your passion or business and participate. Often these Tweetchats attract upwards of 500+ participants and you can develop thought-leadership and opportunities to plug your business and content.
  6. Use Social Bookmarking Services (StumbleUpon, Digg, Delicious)
    Social bookmarking services promote discovery of new and popular content. While not all content you would submit would necessarily be popular to everyone, if you tag and describe it to your target audience, it may resonate well and rise in popularity in those social circles. StumbleUpon is a service that helps people discover new and popular websites;. Digg works similarly where people submit articles for the court of public opinion to rank it higher. Delicious works by categorizing links and allowing new sites to earn a spike of traffic and interest.
  7. Sponsor and Support a Cause
    Supporting a cause and telling your customers, prospects, friends and family is a great way to drive traffic to your site. People generally have a favorable view of a business that engages in philanthropic efforts. Social media is a great platform for your audience to spread the buzz about a cause they (and you) care about a cause or a mission they support. Infusionsoft is a supporter of Kiva and Mentors International as they are great organizations and help entrepreneurs worldwide.
  8. Attend and Be Active at Events
    Attending events is one thing, but being active online and offline is another. Most quality live events today have a big online element to all the agenda. You can be a hit by covering the event live via a live-blog, on-going tweets and even shooting video and asking questions to other attendees and speakers. You name it, you get known and drive traffic by participating and going on the hustle for your brand. Does it mean tossing out business cards like candy? No, it means that you make a concerted effort to be useful and connect with people so they have an interest in you.
  9. Author Informative and Interesting Blogs
    Blog posts are probably one of the easiest ways to drive traffic to your site and grow from them. When you publish a great post, you’ll not only get your name out there and get a nice SEO benefit, you’ll also drive interest to your business to learn more about where all your awesome ideas came from. Not sure what to blog? Here’s a tutorial on how to share your ideas through blogging.
  10. Answer Questions and Help Others (LinkedIn, PeerPong, Yahoo! Answers)
    Are you seeing a theme here, yet? Answering questions and being helpful is an effective way to become known for your business and your areas of expertise. In fact, you can become distinguished in several niche area and can translate top Q&A and topics into blog posts, videos and much more and have your business being closely associated with answering questions from others. Sites like Yahoo Answers, LinkedIn and PeerPong are indexed well in search engines and allows you to ensure many people who come across the question will encounter your answer, name and likely, your business.
  11. Publish Reactions (Blogs, Tweets & Video) to Bleeding-Edge Trends
    This is a grey area, but I encourage you to do it with discretion. Google Trends ranks the top searches people are doing on their service and you can quickly tap into the popularity of a search team by publishing content around it. Use it to share your personal and even your business’ reactions to top events. Reporters sometimes  want to include the views from entrepreneurs in their stories – and if your story is there, you will get traffic and potentially even more buzz. You can also do the same with What the Trend to look at what’s a big deal across Twitter. Just be careful not to publish nonsense… Justin Beiber probably has nothing to do with your business and those people searching for him probably want nothing to do with yours.

 

These traffic-building tactics can relate to a larger marketing strategy where you follow-up to people’s interests in your business. This is where marketing automation software can come into play where you can track where people came from and follow up with an ingenious marketing campaign to turn those visitors into suspects, suspects into leads, and leads into customers.

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13 Best General Marketing Ideas
by websitebymidnight.com on 

1.Create a marketing plan and budget.
•What are your goals?
•how are you going to get there? (Budget, action steps, etc.)
2.Take one marketing action step each day.
3.Get a toll-free number to project a better image and capture national customers (you can get them for $2/month at kall8).
4.Followup with your existing customers
5.Be Personally Accessible
6.Targeting your market and watch for news, trends and events that effect that market.
7.Create a new product or service that is either better or cheaper than your current product.
8.Stack services or products together to create a special package and promote that.
9.If you miss a call you don’t have to miss a customer. Offer a special discount on your voice mail or quickly talk about some of the greatest benefits of your product.
10.Create a better store sign or logo.
11.Higher someone from your target market group to come up with new and creative marketing ideas.
12.Look for advertising interns to help you create and execute a marketing plan.
13.Look for job offers or those looking for your product or service.
•Freelance sites
•Craigslist
•Lead generation sites

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Five Reasons Why Social Media Is Right for Small Business
by websitebymidnight.com on 

When it comes to social media, the one thing that small and midsize businesses want to know is this: Is it worth it?

Yes, it is. Here are five reasons why.

 

1. It helps you stay ahead of the competition

A recent study by the Center for Marketing Research at the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth found that America's fastest-growing private companies adopt social-media-marketing initiatives at much higher rates than other companies.

Vistaprint, a company specializing in small businesses, conducted another study—on small business marketing trends—and found that small businesses are likely to increase their use of online-marketing tactics in the coming year.

The takeaway: Small businesses that are embracing online tactics now will grow at a higher rate in the future. If they haven't already, your competitors will extend their marketing into social media in 2010, trends indicate. Those who adopt social media are poised for faster growth and increased sales. Are you?

 

2. It extends your reach

Facebook has 500 million followers, up 25% from less than a year ago.

The takeaway: Use social media to get your information in front of many people who are interested in what you have to say. Connecting with prospects is the first step to making a sale. How many quality prospects did you reach today?

 

3. It provides powerful search engine optimization

Search engines love activity. Social-media participation increases your online presence. Posting fresh content on your site and broadcasting the link on your social-media channels also improves your SEO.

The takeaway: When prospects do a search for your business, they will find proof of your activity in the form of multiple links to your site. Your site will rank higher than will a company that has the equivalent of an electronic brochure for a website. Or is your site the one that is the electronic brochure?

 

4. It engenders prospects' trust in your business

Prospects today turn to the Internet to get their information. Your absence is no longer simply missed; rather, it raises a red flag. Prospects trust businesses with an online presence.

The takeaway: Prospects equate an online absence with a business that has nothing to say and is disengaged with customers. Or they will wonder what you're hiding. When making a purchasing decision, customers turn to vendors they can find and trust. Are you claiming excellent customer service even as you make it difficult for customers to find you?

 

5. It respects compressed schedules

Social-media activity shows prospects who you are, what you do, and how and where you do it. Prospects can gather that information and get their answers all before the first conversation. They will see you as a trusted source of information, a critical factor when it comes time for them to make a decision.

The takeaway: People follow the path of least resistance. Use social media to give them that path. Do you still insist that prospects give up their time to meet you in order to gather information they can get online... from your competitors?

 

Mike Krause is the chief sales architect and owner of Sales Sense Solutions (www.salessensesolutions.com), where he gives CEOs, VPs of sales, and sales professionals the results they want by implementing the tactics, tools, and high-performance strategies they need.

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6 Reasons Why People Will Buy From You Over Your Competitors
by websitebymidnight.com on 

Just think… With today’s current advancements in social media technologies entrepreneurs can reach out to tens of thousands of people in new and engaging ways. Even better, they can accomplish this without spending a dime making social media marketing is quite possibly the ultimate low cost, high impact

 

However, while it takes just minutes to register and begin using social media websites, entrepreneurs who plan on using these powerful tools to grow their businesses, must do much more than merely participate in the social media “craze.” Rather, today’s overcrowded and highly competitive Internet marketplace demands that they approach social media seriously and arm themselves with essential knowledge of people, marketing and communication as well as a solid plan of attack.

 

More than even today’s online entrepreneur must not only stay current with the ever changing online technologies but they must be a strong marketer, savvy business person and know why people buy.

 

6 Reasons Your Prospects Will Choose to Become Your Customers

 

1.  Their experiences with you. Your prospects will judge your worthiness based on how you make them feel. This includes how well you communicate, your content “depth,” your website’s quality and much more. Your prospects will also be more likely to engage in “conversations” with you when you allow them to interact in ways they prefer (i.e some may resonate with a blog post while others are more engaged by video or audio content).  And always remember you are marketing to people first so build the human bond by remembering personal details and listening carefully.

 

2. Your product or service benefits. There are two basic reasons why people purchase anything – to increase pleasure (e.g. glowing health, freedom, popularity) or decrease pain (e.g. stress, financial problems, poor health). Therefore, focus on your product or service’s most compelling benefits as you communicate with your target audience – then, make sure you deliver on your promises. Be specific.

 

3. Your trustworthiness and reputation. Protect your good name and do everything in your power to ensure that your customers, prospects, friends, employees, and colleagues view you as a person of value. Keep in mind that your credibility, plausibility, and truthfulness will also win you far more customers than exaggerated claims and over-the-top promises.

 

4. The value they receive. Although most consumers are price-conscious, the vast majority do not consider price alone when making their buying decisions. Rather, they consider value: the difference between what something costs and its worth to the buyer. What does value look like in the social media world? Answer: great content, expert advice and personal connections.

 

5. Make transactions easy, safe, and secure. People are more likely to hand over their money when they perceive the risk as minimal. It’s best to reassure potential customers with robust guarantees, a solid privacy policy, and secure payment procedures.

 

6. How well you articulate their most pressing concerns. To market effectively you must get into your prospects’ heads. Listen carefully (and social media forums and blogs make this very easy) to your target audiences’ expressed opinions and feelings – particularly as they relate to your products or services – and be sure to address them directly. Research the marketplace to discover new trends and golden opportunities that you can leverage to benefit your business.

 

Most importantly – especially in the social media marketing environment – remember that the superior online and offline marketing happens when entrepreneurs are willing to put themselves out there and build genuine human connections. Social media marketing is not about quantity; it’s about quality. It is not just about long lists of “followers.” Rather, it begins with a sincere desire to grow and nourish genuine relationships and doing whatever it takes to ensure they happen. If you do this, the money will follow.

———

The preceding was adapted from Success Secrets Of The Social Media Marketing Superstars by Mitch Meyerson and 22 of the top social media marketers in the world.
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Top 10 Social Media Marketing Books of 2009
by websitebymidnight.com on 

Since many are still looking for the best book on social media…as well as those last minute gift ideas, I wanted to publish the results of a study that I held via my friends and social media connections on Linkedin and Facebook. I polled over 5,000 people and simply asked “What’s the best book on social media out there.” And here are the results!

 

The list goes from the title receiving the most votes to the one that received the least….but no book is any less important.

 

1. Groundswell (by Charlene Li): This title was the overwhelming winner in the poll. I cannot argue that wonderful case studies and the concise, direct approach of the book. It is so small but packed with so much useful information.

 

2. Trust Agents (by Chris Brogan and Julien Smith): This was the second place winner and my own personal favorite. A great book filled with straight forward advice, no nonsense action plans and most importantly it focuses on many of the ethical aspects we can sometimes forget when marketing via social media channels.

 

3. The New Rules of Marketing and PR (David Meerman Scott): Our third place winner is a definite must-have for marketers and non-marketers alike. This book is packed with straight talk from DMS on how to really ride the wave rather than having it crash on top of you.

 

4. Social Media Marketing in an Hour a Day (Dave Evans): Are you a Marketing VP desperate to find a way to prove the effectiveness of social media marketing to the big boss? If that is the case, then this is ABSOLUTELY your book. It contains a great blueprint for pitching upper management on the importance of taking the leap into the social media world.

 

5. Crush It (Gary Vaynerchuck): Got heaps of passion and want to cash in? If this is your outlook, our fifth place book is the perfect fit for you!

 

6. Inbound Marketing: Getting Found Using Google, Social Media and Blogs (Brian Halligan, Dharmesh Shah and David Meerman Scott): The title is uber popular with the folks polled and I can understand why – it is written by those innovators at HubSpot. My advice, check out HubSpot first and if you like what you see, get the book. In my opinion both are a slam dunk.

 

7. The New Community Rules (Tamar Weinberg): If you are looking for a great read packed with facts, figures, case studies and applicable information…check Tamar’s book out. I love it!

 

8. The Social Media Bible (Lon Safko and David K. Brake): If you are a marketer, I really suggest going out and buying this book. This book is a great quick reference guide to all of the different online avenues, their strengths and weaknesses in addition to what they can mean to your business. A great way to group information and understand concepts quicker. Highly recommended!

 

9. Six Pixels of Separation (Mitch Joel): Another popular book with the masses, this one focuses on blending the world of social media, marketing, digital marketing, branding and more.

 

10. Socialnomics (Erik Qualman): If you are someone who likes a more research based approach at explaining how the social media is affecting our professional and personal culture, this book is for you.

 

Honorable Mentions: these books were just outside of the top ten…meaning they are still worth it!

 

• The Whuffie Factor (Tara Hunt)

• Me 2.0 (Dan Schwabel)

• Tribes (Seth Godin)

• The Viral Loop (Adam L. Penenberg)

• Twitter Power* (Joel Comm)

• The Virtual Handshake (David Tetan and Scott Allen)

• Twitterville (Shel Israel)

 

My sincere hope is that this list gives you a touch of inspiration to pick up one of these wonderful titles and learn more about this wonderful world of online marketing.

article from: http://www.chrisgomedia.com

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