How To Use LinkedIn For Sales?

How To Use LinkedIn For Sales?

With over 150 million members worldwide, is not difficult to see why LinkedIn is  getting increasingly more powerful when it comes to generating sales.

Unjustifiably, LinkedIn is often seen as simply the place to go to find a job. However, LinkedIn has certainly a lot more to offer when it comes to generating sales and is primarily used as a way of generating leads. In business to business environment, LinkedIn can turn out to be indispensable mainly due to its uncapped potential for business development as it not only makes generating leads more time-effective but also hassle-free.

1. Why You Should Not Miss A Chance To Connect?

First things first, step back and take a critical look at your contacts. Your contacts, be it family, friends or workmates can be used to further expand your professional LinkedIn network by adding second and third level connections . Whether you meet anyone online or offline, it’s always a good idea to follow up with a connection request to strengthen your LinkedIn profile.

2. Who’s Who?

You’d be amazed how much information people give out on LinkedIn! That’s why it works so great when trying to identify the key decision-makers.  You can easily determine all the relevant people, teams and projects which in turn helps you gain a better understanding of who’s who and the people who influence the scene. 

3. Why Cold Calls Are a Thing Of The Past?

Let’s be honest, cold calling is a fact of life. Sure, the vast majority of sales people would prefer to rely on other lead generating techniques. However, unless you are an established business, you will, at some time, be forced to cold call in order to generate leads. However, LinkedIn comes in handy here as you can almost always gather some information about your prospects before approaching them. Before approaching any of your prospects on LinkedIn always have a look at their profile to see what they’re after. You’ll be surprised how well this works when it comes to breaking the ice!  

Take a close look at profile and status updates, connections you have in common and group posts. It might be worth investing into a paid account as you gain access to everyone on LinkedIn.  

4. How To Get Past The Security Guard Unnoticed?

If you had a decision-making power in sales you’d do everything in your power to cut down on the number of calls and emails that get through to you…

However, there are ways you can bypass these security measures with InMail. InMail is basically LinkedIn’s internal email system allowing you to message anyone on LinkedIn while skipping the introduction.

5. Search smart, not hard

LinkedIn search facility allows you to search by title, company, location or keyword. You can also get weekly reports matching your search criteria, e.g. your customers’ profiles saving you a considerable amount of time. 

6. Spy On Your Prospects

If you’re in sales, you’d probably agree that you need to know your prospects better than you know yourself! Any industry changes are a good enough incentive to reach out to your potential customers to offer your services. 

To stay up-to-date with the newest industry trends and spy on your prospects or companies you have a vetted interest in follow a company’s LinkedIn page.

7. The Power Of Groups On LinkedIn

Groups offer you the ability to learn more about the industry you have a vetted interest in. It’s also a great way of gauging needs and demands of your target market. This can often give you a good enough incentive to approach your prospects.

Joining groups can offer you a better idea in terms of what’s going on with the company you’re interested in. Also you gain access to personal details of other members of the group which is normally restricted to first level connections. While being a group member you can further build your connections.

8. Make Your LinkedIn Profile Stand Out!

Make sure your LinkedIn profile is complete as it acts as your business card and the first thing a prospect will see.  You want to make sure it looks professional and creates a great first impression.

All the information on your LinkedIn profile needs to be up-to-date, including all links to your website and other social media networks.

Getting business recommendations can certainly help. Last but not least, include a high quality photograph in your profile. Smile!

More on getting your LinkedIn profile work for you here. 

9. The Power Of Taking A Look Back…

Unless a user has set his/her profile to anonymous you can see who’s viewed your profile. You can use it to your advantage by reaching out with a connection request. It works the other way round too. You’ll probably find that some of the people whose profiles you visited will always look back.

Source: http://www.salesforce.com/uk/socialsuccess/social-sales/10-tips-for-using-linkedin-sales-prospecting.jsp

 

Some Signs That It’s Time To Switch Off Social Media

Time To Re-Think Social Media

To say that we live in a tech-obsessed society is a monumental understatement. 500 million tweets are sent per day, and 1.28 billion people use Facebook on a regular basis. Just a quick glance at Facebook and you will see people “checking in” to different places in the world, and it seems as though nothing is officially happening on Earth until it has been verified on some sort of social networking platform. This is all too familiar now, but how far can you for before it’s time to switch off?

(Source: thelantern.com)

Food on Instagram:

So you’re preparing your evening meal, and the presentation must be key. Despite settling down on your own it must be immaculate as you’re about to take a picture of it. This sounds very strange, and is, as no person in their right mind would take a picture of a Spaghetti Bolognese would they? Well yes they would, and many do each day. Instagram is full of delicacies and dishes to warm the appetite, but as Alex Soojung-Kim Pang, PH.D says, “when you start crafting your life to be more Twitter or Instagram friendly, it’s time to step back.”

Tweeting about everything (literally):

Whether it’s painting your nails or taking the bins out, you will tweet about it. We all have this friend on Facebook, the one who tells you about every single movement they make, but it is quite likely that you are also that friend. Pang says that “composing tweets about what you’re doing as you’re doing it or feeling the need to report your thoughts in real-time are all signs that social media is taking over your life.” He goes onto say that “there are only 24 hours in a day, and the more time we spend sharing with our friends what we’re doing hour-by-hour, the less time we have to discover for ourselves why we enjoy these activities and what our days are adding up to mean.”

You know strangers all too well:

It is unnerving that so many people know so much about each other, and this is due to the nature of today’s social media platforms. Facebook provides the most intimate information if you allow it to do so, and this leaves many vulnerable. Pang says that “the irony of social media is that while it can be great for keeping up with the details of our friend’s lives, too much engagement can obscure the big picture and weaken our ability to make sense of our own lives.” It takes away the joy of getting to know someone face-to-face as most of the time, when knowing that you will see someone you know little about, it is standard practice to check them out on Facebook first.

Source: rehab.com

Feeling inadequate:

When you scroll down your Facebook feed, it seems as though everybody is successful in their own avenue of work, and it can make you feel like you’re not good enough. Witnessing your friend’s promotions, engagements and life-changing trips can stir up feelings of jealousy and inadequacy. Spending too much time on social media can do this on its own, and can have a particularly negative impact on your view of your own body, as pictures of chiseled human beings are shared. This creates anxiety, and can end up damaging friendships and relationships. Pang says that “when keeping up with your friends’ lives gets in the way of you happily leading your own life, you need a break.”

Feeling lost when you don’t have your phone:

Do you find yourself consistently checking your phone for social media updates? You probably do, most people do. You probably also find yourself checking Twitter before you go to sleep, and also upon waking up in the morning. If yes to any of the above, then it’s time to take a step back and re-evaluate. Pang says “the more you’re on social media, the less material you actually have to talk about that’s interesting and worth having other people hear.”

This is where we are with social media now. Some people are allowing it to run their lives, and it is damaging relationships that once existed on a face-to-face level. That is being lost, and it is unfortunate, because social media has great potential, and great things are being done with it, such as charity, and awareness. This is being overshadowed by the monotonous dat-to-day activities online that people are taking up. If you do believe in New Years resolutions, then re-evaluate social media use. Don’t give it up, but utilise it in a way that will make your time on Earth as wonderful as possible.

What Is Online Marketing?

What Is Online Marketing?

What is online marketing and how does it work? Online marketing also known as Internet marketing or online advertising is a strategy that plays an important part in reaching out to consumers and establishing a brand. It builds your online reputation by increasing your chances to be found online and getting your name out to the public.

How does online marketing work?

By taking advantage of the fact that a large number of your potential customers browse the internet you leverage your chances of being found online and building your reputation.  Therefore, you increase your chances of getting your name out to the public. Online marketing takes on different forms and encourages potential customers to look for information, products or services you offer.

Online marketing boils down to a few essential aspects including website development, Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and Search Engine Management (SEM), email marketing, display advertising and social networks.

Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

Search Engine Optimization is the process of increasing the visibility of a website/web page in a search engine’s “natural” or unpaid organic search results for desired keywords. Generally, the higher the ranking on the search results page the more visitors the site receives. Search Engine Optimization tends to be a long-term and targets different kinds of search, including image search, local search, video search, academic search, news search and industry-specific vertical search engines. It has many contributing factors including on-site content, internal and external links, site architecture, keyword research and competition analysis. What SEO basically does is that it helps you being found online which is probably one of the most important aspects of online marketing, however, there are other strategies that supplement these efforts.

Search engine optimization (SEO) is the process of affecting the visibility of a website or a web page in a search engine’s “natural” or un-paid (“organic”) search results. In general, the earlier (or higher ranked on the search results page), and more frequently a site appears in the search results list, the more visitors it will receive from the search engine’s users. SEO may target different kinds of search, including image search, local search, video search, academic search, news search and industry-specific vertical search engines.

Wikipedia

Search Engine Marketing (SEM)

Once a website is built the next stage of your online marketing strategy is to promote it. Search engine marketing (SEM) is a strategy adopted in online marketing referring to promoting websites by increasing their visibility in search engine results with keywords related  to your business. Search engine management includes per per click ads (PPC) and search engine optimization (SEO).

Search engine marketing (SEM) is a form of Internet marketing that involves the promotion of websites by increasing their visibility in search engine results pages (SERPs) through optimization and advertising. SEM may use search engine optimization (SEO), which adjusts or rewrites website content to achieve a higher ranking in search engine results pages, or use pay per click (PPC) listings.

Wikipedia

Per per click (PPC)

Pay per click (PPC) is a method of charging for advertising on the Internet. Per per click is basically an ad ad that displays on search engine result pages. The advertiser (typically a website owner) pays only when the ad is clicked (as opposed to pay per view ad (PPV) when the advertiser pays when the ad is viewed).  PPC is simply the amount spent to get an ad clicked.

Pay per click (PPC) (also called cost per click) is an internet advertising model used to direct traffic to websites, in which advertisers pay the publisher (typically a website owner) when the ad is clicked. It is defined simply as “the amount spent to get an advertisement clicked.”

Wikipedia

The advertiser (or website owner) pays when the ad is clicked and the user is then redirected to their website or landing page. Pay per click can provide an almost  immediate exposure online while offering you a very transparent way of measuring your efforts.

What the difference between Search Engine Optimization and Search Engine Management?

In the past, Search Engine Marketing used to refer to both SEO and SEM. However, nowadays it tends to refer solely to paid search as opposed to SEO which refers solely to unpaid search.

Social Networks

One of the ways to leverage online marketing is through use of social networking sites which are a powerful marketing tool as they give you a platform to build a reputation. Their main advantage are word-of-mouth recommendations as  these networks give you the option to adopt reputation management strategies and advertise your company, website or services. .The main goal of social networking sites is to increase engagement with your existing and potential customers.

Email Marketing

Email marketing is an increasingly powerful online marketing strategy used to reach out to existing customers.  Essentially, every email sent out to your customer could be considered email marketing.  The main goal of email marketing is to build loyalty, trust and brand awareness by sending ads, request business, solicit sales or donations, newsletters, coupons or informational emails to either sold lists or existing customer database.

Broadly, the term is usually used to refer to sending email messages with the purpose of enhancing the relationship of a merchant with its current or previous customers, to encourage customer loyalty and repeat business, sending email messages with the purpose of acquiring new customers or convincing current customers to purchase something immediately, and adding advertisements to email messages sent by other companies to their customers.

Wikipedia

One of the ways to use email marketing is to give new customers an incentive to sign up for your newsletter or mailing list. While marketing to a new list is a fairly new concept it enhances your email marketing strategy by giving you access to targeted leads who have given their permission to receive newsletters or informational emails on the subject of their interest.

Display Advertising

Display advertising is a type of advertising that is located on websites. It can be seen in a wide range of different formats and contains items such as texts, images, flash, video and audio. The main purpose is to deliver general advertisements and brand messages to the plus 40 million people connected to the Internet each month.

Wikipedia

Display advertising or online display ads are advertisements on search engines such as Google, Yahoo and Bing. Rich media ads contain images or video and involve some kind of user interaction. They also give you the option to access metrics of your audience’s behaviour such as the amount of time spent interacting with your ad. Display network provides accurate measures regarding interest in your products or services while using visuals that increase your audience engagement.

Website Development

Website development plays a important role in reaching your target audience given the fact that potential customers search for information, products or services that you provide on your website. Your website is simply a tool to increase your online presence that lets your customers make an informed decision regarding your company, its products or services. Creating a website should not be underestimated as its a window to your target audience especially given that fact that nowadays designing a website is fairly simple and cost-effective. You can choose from free websites that come with a number of limitations, professionally looking template websites at a reduced cost and turn-around time or the more expensive custom websites tailored to suite your company’s needs.

Online marketing plays an important role in running a successful business in today’s digital world.

How Network Marketing Works?

How Network Marketing Works?

The chances are some of your friends tried to recruit you into network marketing opportunities that seem like some type of money game or pyramid scheme. While other friends keep telling you to stay away from them as you’ll get yourself into trouble. How do you know who’s right?

How Does Network Marketing Not Work?

Network marketing is not a pyramid scheme. Pyramid is basically a money game that has no basis in real commerce and is based around the concept that people invest money based on the promise that other people will put in money that will filtrate back to them and somehow, they’ll get rich. Modern-day pyramids may have a product, but it’s clearly there just to disguise the money game. Most often than not, there’s no product involved at all, just money changing hands.

Related article: What is affiliate marketing?

Network marketing isn’t about taking advantage of your friends and relatives. Only a few years ago, network marketing meant retailing to, and sponsoring people from, your “warm list” of prospects. Although sharing the products or services and the opportunity with people you know is still the basic foundation of the business, today we see more people using sophisticated marketing techniques such as the Internet, conference calling and other long-distance sponsoring techniques to extend their network across the country.

WHAT IS NETWORK MARKETING

So How Does Network Marketing Work?

Network marketing is a type of business opportunity that is very popular with people looking for part-time, flexible businesses. Some of the best-known companies in America, including Avon, Mary Kay Cosmetics and Tupperware, fall under the network marketing umbrella.

Wikipedia

Essentially, network marketing is a legitimate business based on providing people with real, legitimate products they need and want at a fair price.

Network marketing is a serious business for serious people. It’s a proven system for your own success. Just follow the simple, proven and duplicable system that the good companies provide.

How Can I Make Money With Network Marketing?

  • Yes, some people do make a lot of money through network marketing, however their individual results vary greatly and are the result of their own dedicated efforts in building an organization that sells real products and services. In network marketing, each person can multiply his or her efforts, skills and talents by helping others be successful.
  • No, network marketing isn’t a get-rich-quick scheme. Of course some people do make large amounts of money very quickly. Success in networking isn’t based on luck. (Unfortunately, money won’t sprout wings and fly into your bank account no matter what someone has promised you.) Success in network marketing is based on following some very basic yet dynamic principles. Some people don’t make any money at all as the amount of money you make depends on your time and effort. Be wary of pyramid schemes that are illegal and in order for a person to actually make money in a pyramid scheme, someone else has to lose money.


Related article: What is affiliate marketing?

How Does Network Marketing Work For Me?

Network marketing is all about leveraging your time and increasing the number of hours of work effort on which you can be paid by sponsoring other people and earning a small income on their efforts.

I would rather make 1 percent on the efforts of 100 people than 100 percent on my own efforts.

J. Paul Getty

This very basic concept is the cornerstone of network marketing.

How Does Network Marketing Work For Others?

Most successful people building a network marketing business do so in an organized method. They work a few dedicated hours each week, with each hour of effort serving as a building block for their long-term business growth. Then they sponsor other people and teach those people how to sell the company product and sponsor others who duplicate the process.

By helping the people you personally sponsor to sponsor others, you duplicate yourself. As this process continues, you create compound growth that can lead to hundreds or even thousands of people coming into your business. You leverage your time by helping others be successful and earn an income from all their efforts.

The Breakdown of How Network Marketing Works

  • no big capital requirements
  • no geographical limitations
  • no minimum quotas required
  • no special education or skills needed.
  • low-overhead
  • home based business that can actually offer many of the tax advantages associated with owning your own business.
  • people-to-people business that can significantly expand your circle of friends.
  • enables you to travel and have fun as well as enjoy the lifestyle

Conclusion

Network marketing is certainly a great way of making money online, however, there are no magic pills and you still need roll up your sleeves and do some work. Individual results vary greatly but with a little time and effort you can succeed in network marketing.

Related article: What is affiliate marketing?

What is Affiliate Marketing?

What is affiliate marketing?

So what is affiliate marketing? Affiliate marketing is becoming an increasingly more popular way of making money online yet  few people understand how it actually works. In this article I’ll debunk myths surrounding the topic of affiliate marketing, what it is and what it is not, its advantages and its pitfalls.

Affiliate marketing has grown in popularity mainly because it is a cost-effective way of generating money online, does not require any previous experience or technical skills making it ideal for anyone wishing to start online regardless of their age, background or origin.

There are thousands of other websites on the Internet offering confusing information affiliate marketing, some very good and others that blind you with technical jargon, resulting in you being none the wiser after having read their article.

What Is Affiliate Marketing – Definition

Affiliate marketing is a type of performance-based marketing in which a business rewards one or more affiliates for each visitor or customer brought by the affiliate’s own marketing efforts.

Wikipedia

What it basically means is that in return for selling someone else’s products or services you receive a commission.  Affiliate marketing is based around the concept that you get paid when you sell or promote someone else’s product.

Related article: 17 Reasons Why You May Never Make it Online?

What is affiliate marketing good for?

  • ideal if you want to start making money online but do not have your own products or services
  • ideal for stay at home mums/dads, single parents
  • ideal for freelance workers and self-employed people
  • if you want to earn extra income on top of your salary
  • if you want to quit your 9-5 job
  • if you want more financial freedom
  • if you want more time freedom
  • if you need more flexible working hours
  • if you travel a lot

What is affiliate marketing not good for?

  • people without basic IT skills (you need to have basic computer skills if you want to succeed in this niche)
  • people wishing to make money overnight (any affiliate programs supporting these claims are get quick rich scams)
  • people looking for a magic pill and wanting something for nothing (you need to roll up your sleeves in order to succeed in affiliate marketing)

what is affiliate marketing

What is affiliate marketing used for?

Affiliate marketing just one of the ways used by companies to leverage their business by reaching a wider audience with the aim of increasing both their sales and customer database. One of the ways to achieve this is through affiliate marketing where a number of people (affiliates) advertise, promote and sell company’s products and services in return for a commission.

It is very hard and very expensive for any business owner to market any product or service on their own. However, if you were a business owner and had other people selling your products and services you could quickly reach a much larger audience, build your customer database and increase your sales. Thanks to affiliate marketing your business would only pay money if and when your affiliates sell a product. This is a very cost-effective way of marketing your business as a business owner. Every time your affiliates promoted your product resulting in the sale of a product they would then receive a commission. Hence they would then have an incentive to continue promoting your product making it a win-win situation for both your company and your affiliates.

Does Affiliate Marketing Work?

  • Yes, however, individual results varies hugely and depend solely on your time and effort. Affiliate marketing offers an uncapped earning potential and it is possible to make huge amounts of money from it. There are people doing so each and every day but the fact is, they didn’t get rich overnight! Essentially, affiliate marketing is a business and as such it requires both time and effort, however, compared to other businesses it can yield considerably higher returns.
  • No, there are no magic pills and you need to roll up your sleeves and do the work. Internet marketing is a lot more slow-paced than most people think. There are many tire kickers that  expect something for nothing. As with any other business venture in order to succeed you need to do some work. Any affiliate programs that claim otherwise are get quick rich schemes.

Related article: 17 Reasons Why You May Never Make it Online?

So what is affiliate marketing not?

Affiliate marketing is certainly not a get quick rich scheme. In fact, it’s a lot more slow-paced than most people think. Essentially, affiliate marketing is a business and that’s exactly how it should be treated. It is certainly a great way of making money online but just like any other business it requires time and effort to grow.

Why start affiliate marketing?

  • cost-effective – you do not need large amounts of money to start
  • runs on autopilot – once you have it up and running, your affiliate marketing business can be earning you money 24 hours per day, 365 days a year
  • no need to buy or hold stock
  • no need to buy or rent premises
  • no need to deal with customers or sales
  • no shipping required
  • no need to deal with refunds
  • can be run from anywhere in the world
  • very easy to set up
  • time-effective – requires less time and effort than other forms of Internet marketing

What should you watch out for when considering affiliate marketing?

  • get quick rich schemes – watch out for claims promising to make you rich overnight Any such claims are illegal and are advertised by illegitimate businesses
  • do your own research  – check reviews and testimonials. It might also be worth checking statistics and conversion rates before you join any affiliate marketing scheme
  • review your budget – depending on whether you decide to go for paid or unpaid advertising make sure you have some funds set aside for this purpose

Conclusion

Affiliate marketing is certainly a great way of making money online, however, there are no magic pills and you still need roll up your sleeves and do some work. Individual results vary greatly but with a little time and effort you can succeed in affiliate marketing.

Related article: 17 Reasons Why You May Never Make it Online?

21 Ways To Build Your List

21 Ways To Build Your List

Email marketing can be profitable for any business, no matter what kind of product or service you offer. But the foundation of email marketing success is the quality and size of your permission- based email list. If you build a list of subscribers that trust you and consider you an expert in your field, your response rates will constantly climb.

Developing and maintaining a responsive opt-in email list is challenging, even for the most experienced marketers. Whether you’re at the beginning of your list-building journey or already have thousands of contacts, list management is hard work. Addresses change, subscribers become inactive, and some unsubscribe, chipping away about 20-30% of your list every year!

However, consider the alternative. Studies show that low-quality lists waste tens of millions of dollars annually, and no business can afford that. Quite simply, small investments in list management can reap huge returns in marketing efficiency and campaign ROI.
The following list provides techniques and tips to help you grow your marketing list, including, but not limited to:

  • Boost sign-up form activity.
  • Find new places to add forms.
  • Use more content-distribution channels.
  • Partner with other publishers and vendors.
  • Contribute to social media sites and blogs.
  • Place your sign-up form on Facebook

1. Add a sign-up form everywhere prospects go

Sign-up opportunities should be easily accessible on every page of your website. Make sure they “pop” visually and indicate clearly what subscribers receive. Don’t forget your website and any blogs you control. Blogging is a great communication tool, so include a sign-up form in every posts and continue the conversation!

Related article: How Often Should You Email Your List?

2. Boost sign-up activity

Make it quick and easy for your visitors to sign up. A first name and email address are all you need initially. If you ask about frequency or other preferences, keep it brief.

Be clear, persuasive and honest about what subscribers receive and how they benefit from subscribing. Include one or two short customer testimonials. Let them know how often to expect your newsletters and other emails. Don’t inundate subscribers, even if they indicate no preference. Link sample newsletter issues to your sign-up forms, so prospects can make an informed decision. You’ll get more responsive subscribers!

3. Address visitors’ privacy concerns

Don’t overlook this important issue coming out of the gate, as most people fear they will receive an avalanche of spam – or scams – when they give out their email address. Tell potential subscribers that you respect their privacy and their personal information then link to your privacy policy page. Include a link to Customer Service for those who have questions.



 

4. Add incentives to sign up

Decide early whether to use incentives then be as consistent as possible. The most popular incentives are free articles or reports and, of course, special offers, VIP programs and discounts. The latter can eat into your profits if your sign-up forms are working, so we recommend “thought leadership” papers or ebooks and reports that you know your prospects can use. These attract quality subscribers and increase your reputation as a subject matter expert!

5. Create a great squeeze page

First things first! A squeeze page is typically designed only to build your list, so make sure it’s compelling and convincing. It should feature a powerful headline and a few of the “juiciest” benefits to get visitors salivating to sign up to your list! Entertain your visitors with an audio or video message explaining why they should subscribe. Or consider letting a customer provide the message! It creates that “human connection” and is an opportunity to direct them to the sign-up form on your webpage while you’re winning them over!

6. Include testimonials in your squeeze page

This is crucial. Customer opinions can be the most powerful conversion tool of all! Put one or two strong testimonials from satisfied subscribers on your squeeze page. Use any format, but you may find that multimedia (audio and/or video) is more “believable”. People like to see and hear the people behind the opinions, so they can make more informed judgments.

7. Use social media and Subscribe-Via-Facebook options

Social media sites have become effective places to collect email addresses. Place a sign-up form on your FanPage, so fans can subscribe to your list. Then create a bond with your fans by sending personalized messages.
Social login allows people to sign up to your newsletters using their Facebook login. Research shows that nearly 8 in 10 respondents prefer to log in to sites using a social identity. And those who
are active on social networks are more likely to comment on your services and products. By the same token, they’re more easily influenced by what others say on social sites.

8. Include a “Sign Up” button inside your e-newsletter

…or a text link to your subscription page, if you’re not using HTML. This may sound like a waste of time, but what if a subscriber forwards it to friends and co-workers? Or shares it on social media sites? Or reproduces it online? You could explode your sign-ups, just by adding a form!

9. Create a web-based newsletter repository

By offering an online archive or gallery of all of your newsletters, you make it much easier for subscribers to decide whether they’d like to sign up. The more informed they are about what you have to offer, the more likely they are to open your email messages. Online newsletter and article archives are also an excellent way to generate additional traffic from search engines!

10. Include “forward to a friend” and “share” links in newsletters and promos

This is the best way to encourage subscribers to share your newsletter content, offers, and articles with friends and on social media sites. “Word of mouth” is a powerful viral technique that works great with email marketing! If subscribers find your content useful and informative, they’ll pass it on, multiplying your readers and hopefully your sign-ups! It’s a powerful source of new subscribers – achieved with minimal effort.

11. Add sign-up forms to blog updates

Place a sign-up form on your blog to notify your readers of new posts. This has a threefold benefit: you build your email list, strengthen relationships with your readers, and get more traffic to your blog!

12. Add opt-in check boxes to other forms and business messages

Create opportunities to sign up for your newsletter while prospects are filling in other forms. Why not? It’s a value-added service to let them know a free e-newsletter is available. Think about all the types of forms you use: from software downloads, demos, and white papers to event registrations and contact forms. And with the highest open rates of any emails, confirmation and transactional emails could also increase sign-ups. So add a form!

13. Let others reprint your newsletter

Encourage others to distribute and republish your newsletters, specifying that your newsletter content is not to be modified or used inappropriately. Many webmasters and newsletter publishers are actively looking for high-quality content, and if they reprint your newsletter, you may get new subscribers, traffic, and links to your site. If there are limits and conditions (on commercial use, for example) just state your policy clearly and concisely.

14. Use a co-registration service to build your list

Co-registration is a great way to build your email list. Your newsletter ad or link appears on other websites, and visitors can sign up on the spot to be added to your list! Our favorite co-registration service can be found at GetSubscribers.com or on the GetResponse.com website.

15. Use Google Adwords campaigns

Google Adwords is a relatively cost-effective type of online campaign and can get very nice results. It doesn’t matter whether you promote your newsletter subscription or a blockbuster product launch. Explore to find out what draws best…it’s worth it to experiment. Just make sure your newsletter sign-up form is always on the landing page!

16. Use your physical mailing list

If you have a physical mailing list from your offline business, send a snail-mail postcard to your customers, offering a special discount for signing up to your email newsletter. If you don’t have a snail-mail list, consider leaving a sign-up form near your register or point-of-sale location!

17. Contact other newsletter publishers and vendors

Use your networking and social media skills to reach out to other newsletter publishers or even vendors with complementary products or services. Let them know that you’d be interested in promoting their newsletter or offering if they’d do the same for you. This way, both of you can get more online exposure and build your list faster!

18. Advertise in e-zines and other newsletters

Use newsletter directories to find other newsletter and content publishers that target your audiences. Run a search for “e-zine directory” or “newsletter directory” to find multiple advertising possibilities!

19. Promote your newsletter in Article Directories

Research and submit topical articles to article directories like GoArticles, SubmitYourArticle or EzineArticles. Be sure to include a bio box at the bottom with a link to your website or an autoresponder email address for instant sign-up to your email list. It enhances your reputation, builds your brand, and attracts quality subscribers.

20. Be active on similar websites

Search for similar websites and newsletters using Google Blog Search or Technorati. Post relevant, helpful comments and a trackback to your blog or squeeze page, including, of course, your newsletter sign-up form! Visit discussion boards, forums, Yahoo Answers and similar sites to provide helpful comments and information, including a signature linking to your subscription page.

21. Promote your newsletter at every marketing touch-point!

Whenever you share your PowerPoint or webinar presentations, make it easy for audience members and associates to subscribe by including a link to your newsletter subscription page. Hand out sign-up forms when speaking to groups or at seminars. Don’t forget to ask for them at the end of your presentation! Imagine how many sign-ups you’d get if every incoming caller had the opportunity to subscribe! Have call-center and sales employees ask customers and prospects if they’d like to receive newsletters or promotional emails, once they’ve established rapport. It only adds seconds to the call and is an ideal source of qualified subscribers! If you use hard-copy collateral, get some of those print costs back by encouraging email subscriptions on Direct Mail, Catalogs, and Print Ads.

Conclusion
Include a sign-up form with every value message – everywhere you come in contact with prospects and customers. Feel free to vary the content and the design, but make signing up quick and easy. Your list-building engine will generate new contacts 24/7.

Source: GetResponse.

How Often Should You Email Your List?

How Often Should You Email Your List?

So how often should you email your list? And more importantly how often is too often? There’s a lot of confusing information out there that could be detrimental to your online success. More likely than not, when it comes to email marketing you’ve made at least one of these mistakes. If you want to have a more profitable business and double your income and most importantly if you want to find out about DOs and DON’Ts when it comes to emailing your list read on…

When it comes to email marketing the very first thing you should focus on is making sure your findings are based on the right metrics, and aimed at growing a more stable and profitable business rather than “feelings”.

Method #1: Autoresponder ONLY

Some experts never send live broadcasts and rely only on their autoresponders to do all the work of follow up (unless they’re launching a new product).The intervals they use normally vary from once a day to once every other day.
PROs:

  • handsfree, runs on autopilot
  • lower unsubscribe and complaint rates on average than a more aggressive approach.
  • longer warm up period tends to create higher lifetime lead values over the span of years.

CONs:

  •  requires extremely high lead flow and patience.
  • can take months with this slow drip method to recoup your original advertising expenses let alone see an ROI (return on investment).

Who This Model Is Ideal For: It’s an ideal model for a $10-20 million dollar company with extremely high lead flow and cash reserves, but not for the every day average entrepreneur.

Related article: How To Write Better Emails?

Method #2: High Sales Broadcasts Ratio

This is a model you’ll see a lot in the home business and internet marketing arena and it’s easy to spot for it’s high sales pitch broadcast ratio to value driven emails.

Typically this model exists in a business in an industry with a higher available lead flow and short lead life span.

The practitioners of this model mail their fresh leads heavy to buy offer after offer because they know through experience if they don’t monetize the leads they’ve generated today with a 30 day time span it’s likely they never will, so they blast varying offers at the list to maximize immediate sales.

PROs:

  • highest probability of immediate monetization (rotating offers, and blasting them out without abandon will certainly make you more money in the short term)

CONs:

  • limited in core lifetime lead value. Meaning, you may win now, not long term and you’ll burn through your list fast
  • high unsubscribe and complaint rates which ultimately can get you blocked by major ISPs. Generally the practitioner of this model lives and dies by their lead flow because if it drops from one month to the next so will profits.

Who This Model Is Ideal For: This is generally a method that is seen in $1-3 million dollar per year biz opp heavy businesses with higher lead flow and lower revenue per lead, again not for the long term revenue driven marketer.

Method #3: Hybrid Autoresponder + Broadcast Messages

Some experts have a baseline autoresponder sequence programmed into their autoresponder and commit to bi weekly or weekly broadcasts.

PROs:

  • steady cashflow as you’ll cut the time period for self liquidation of leads down and you’ll positively reinforce yourself on the broadcast days with 1.5X to 2X sales volume days

CONs:

  •  typically a monthly or bi monthly product launch to re-coup ad expenditure So it’s a good model if you’re willing to put out new product offerings every month or every other month to keep profits high.

Who This Model Is Ideal For: Typically this model is found practiced successfully in businesses that generate between $1-7 million annually with a moderate to high lead flow.

Which model works best for anyone starting an online home business?

Method #4: Live Daily Broadcasts

  • most effective, immediately profitable, and long term revenue driving way to develop relationships with your list of prospects is to send out at least two live daily emails. One in the morning or afternoon that’s entertaining and of high value, and another in the other time slot that is meant to drive traffic or direct your prospects to take a positive monetization action.
  • if done consistently it creates immediate short term revenue gains and builds solid relationships that drive high long term lead and customer values.

It’s all about the consistency. High value and entertaining content shared consistently leads to long term trusting relationships.

And, a daily expectation and curiosity to see “what’s coming tomorrow.” You become a welcomed friend and part of your prospect’s daily routine that they will miss IF you don’t show up.

Related article: How To Write Better Emails?

What about deliverability and spam complaints?

Counter to common belief (which would be, “if you email more you’ll be seen as spam and get blocked”) actually the opposite is true.

When you email a specific volume consistently and daily the major ISPs also get used to you and as a result you end up with higher deliverability than if you sent more sporadically.

Now let’s look at spam complaints. You’ll see the same principle holds true. When you email daily you actually have less spam complaints than when you don’t.

When you email daily you’re creating a “self cleaning oven” effect on your list.

Those who aren’t interested unsubscribe a little bit at a time daily. As a result, you’re effectively cleaning your list daily of time wasters and potential spam complaints.

If I email my list daily won’t more people unsubscribe?

The answer is – probably, and that’s good! It’s honestly something I don’t even give a second thought. Get rid of the complainers early. Who cares if people unsubscribe.

The only people that do care are the people who live in a scarcity mindset of “I’ve only got X leads and if I lose one that’s bad” and well, that’s just stinking thinking.

If you believe and know to your core that there’s an infinity supply of leads out there, and you make your business about getting as many of them as possible and sharing value with them daily via email – a highly successful, fulfilling, and profitably business you shall have.

Related article: How To Write Better Emails?

Source: http://daegansmith.com/how-often-should-you-email-your-list/

Which autoresponder should I choose?

Looking for the best autoresponder?

Are you just now figuring how important email marketing can be for your business? No matter what business you are in, you need leads. And if you treat these leads right, these same leads can then turn into sales and happy customers.

If you want to be successful at email marketing, then you’ll need an autoresponder. Not just any autoresponder, but a good autoresponder.

On this site we have gone out and tested all the popular autoresponders we could get our hands on and put them through the paces as part of our own email marketing efforts.

Ultimately, we’ve come up with a list of the best autoresponders that we can confidently recommend. Each one will provide you with the email deliverability, features and support that you will need to become the basis of your email marketing efforts.

Below is a list of the 3 best autoresponders we’ve found according to our testing.

#1 Top Autoresponder – Pure Leverage

pure leverage

Pure Leverage Rating: 

Pure Leverage provides marketing tools including auto-responder, lead capture page system, conference room and video email service. Pure Leverage combines all the necessary tools to run your online business in a single platform.

The Pros

  • highest email deliverability
  • lead capture system
  • conference room
  • blog platform
  • video email service
  • email analytics (you can optimize your opt-in campaigns, track your e

How to Use Twitter for Business?

How to Use Twitter for Business?

Is Twitter a part of your social media marketing?

Or have you let your Twitter marketing drop off lately?

In any case, with the latest Twitter updates, trends in multi-screen usage and real-time marketing, you’ll likely want to take a fresh look at what Twitter has to offer.

Here’s a checklist of everything your business needs to do to get on (or back on) Twitter and start seeing great results.

About Twitter

Twitter is a short message communication tool that allows you to send out messages (tweets) up to 140 characters long to people who subscribe to you (followers).

Your tweets can include a link to any web content (blog post, website page, PDF document, etc.) or a photograph or video. If a picture is worth a thousand words, adding an image to a tweet greatly expands what you can share to beyond the 140-character limit for tweets.

People follow (subscribe) to your Twitter account, and you follow other people. This allows you to read, reply to and easily share their tweets with your followers (retweet).

How Twitter Is Unique

In the social media world, Twitter falls into the category of microblogging tools because of the short, disconnected messages it distributes. Other microblogging tools includeTumblr, FriendFeed and Plurk.

Twitter shares some features with the most common social media tools (FacebookPinterest, LinkedIn, Google+ and YouTube). However, the differences really define Twitter.

  • Facebook: A tweet is like a short Facebook status update. However, with Twitter, every tweet arrives at every follower’s feed, unlike the filter of Facebook’s EdgeRank.
  • Pinterest: Twitter allows you to share photographs and provide commentary in your tweet. However, with Twitter, it’s much easier to have conversation around a shared image than with the comment feature on Pinterest.
  • LinkedIn: A tweet is like a short LinkedIn status update. While LinkedIn is based on trust relationships (and two-way agreements), Twitter allows you to follow anyone, including strangers. This is helpful when you target potential customers.
  • Google+: A tweet is like a short Google+ status update. Twitter also allows you to organize people into lists that organize conversations similar to Google+ groups.
  • YouTube: A tweet can contain a link to a video. However, Twitter doesn’t allow you to create a channel or organize your videos for easy location and commentary.

Now let’s dive into how you can use Twitter for your business.

Related: How To Use LinkedIn To Promote Your Business?

Step #1: Present Your Brand

Your Twitter account and profile are the foundation of your Twitter experience. It’s your chance to tell your business story to the Twitter community.

It is important that your Twitter presence have the same look and feel as your other online tools. This helps people identify your business and builds trust. Choose an account name and images consistent with your other online presences and your brand.

Choose Your Twitter Username

Nothing expresses your brand on Twitter more than your account username. This name appears next to all of your tweets, and is how people identify you on Twitter.

Profile photo and cover example

Choose between your personal name (best for professional individuals) and your business name. Avoid using punctuation to keep your name easy to type on mobile devices.

If your exact business name is not available, choose a similar name for consistency.

Profile Images

Twitter uses two different images to represent your account. It’s important that you take advantage of both of these images to tell your business story. You upload these images under Profile in your account settings.

Your Twitter profile photo is a square photo that appears next to every tweet you send. You can use either your company logo or your headshot for your profile photo.

Profile photo example

Note: Many small businesses use their business name for the account and a personal photo for the profile photo. This adds a personal touch to your Twitter account.

Your Twitter profile header is a large background photo where you can tell a story about your business. Similar to the Facebook cover photo, your header photo appears at the top of your profile page.

Profile and header example

You can also customize the background that people see when they visit your Twitter account. You can create a graphic file so it matches your business branding. You upload this image under Design in your profile settings.

Twitter background example

Step #2: Build a Strong Foundation

It’s important that you complete your Twitter account profile completely. Each feature gives more details about your business that contribute to your business story.

Don’t miss these three important features under Profile in your account settings.

Twitter profile options

  • Location. Tell people where they can find you. But remember, people may be visiting your profile from another city, state or country and won’t recognize your neighborhood or community name. Give them enough information so they can find you.
  • Website. You can share a web address with your community. You can give them your website or blog, but consider using a special Twitter landing page. This is a great way to provide additional information of interest to Twitter users looking into your business.
  • Bio. You only get 160 characters to tell people who you are and what you do. Skip the mission statement and talk about the benefits you deliver. And add in a little personality to bring your profile to life.

 Step #3: Start Following People

When you follow another Twitter user, you subscribe to read what they share. So be selective about whom you follow, especially at first.

To follow a user, you find their user profile and click on the Follow button.

Twitter follow this user

Twitter has strict rules about what they call aggressive following and aggressive following churn, so be careful and take it slow. You don’t want to get your account suspended in your first week because of suspicious activity.

Note: Your Twitter experience is defined by whom you follow, not by who follows you. Pay attention to your follow choices to give yourself a great Twitter experience.

In general, start following people in these categories:

  • Your customers
  • Your business partners, suppliers, contractors and vendors
  • Your competitors or peers
  • Trade organizations or professional organizations for your industry
  • Businesses in your neighborhood
  • Businesses run by people you know (your professional network)

Twitter can help you find people you know by scanning your email address book.

Twitter find friends

While you are out following people, you may notice that people are starting to follow you. Don’t worry if you don’t know these people. Stay focused on whom you follow for now.

Step #4: Start Talking

Talking on Twitter is different from every other social media site. It’s a fast-paced smorgasbord of ideas and sentence fragments. It’s hectic, but it’s also fun.

Give yourself a little time to get your feet wet. Listen to others. Jump in when you feel comfortable. Start talking as you get your bearings.

In general, there are five types of Twitter messages:

  1. Tweet: a message you send out to everyone who follows you. This is the heart of Twitter communication.Twitter regulartweet
  2. @Reply: a message you send out as a reply to a message you received. The @reply is a public message that mentions the Twitter username of the person. It shows up in the tweet stream of everyone who follows both of you, and on the @connect (mentions) page of the Twitter user.Twitter reply tweet
  3. Mention: a message you send out that mentions another Twitter username.Twitter mention tweet
  4. Direct message (DM): a message you send privately to another Twitter user. You can only send a DM to someone who follows you.Twitter dm example
  5. Retweet (RT): a message created and sent by someone else that you share with the people who follow you. Twitter makes it easy to share tweets.Twitter retweet example

Step #5: Talk Smarter

After you master the five types of tweets, you are ready to attack the big question: What should I talk about on Twitter?

For every business, the answer is different. In general, you want to find the sweet spot between what your target audience wants to hear and things that promote your business. For many businesses, the answer is to focus on how your products and services benefit your customers.

Give people useful information and answer their questions, and they will consider you a valuable member of their community. That’s an important first step to winning a new customer.

There’s a real art to writing a headline-style message on Twitter. Experiment with different ways to say the same thing, and see what gets the most response. With only 140 characters, it’s important that every word pull its weight in your messages.

Over time, the quality of what you share will help you grow a strong Twitter following. Now, you are ready to take a step back and come up with a Twitter communication plan. Your plan focuses your Twitter conversation on topics designed to draw in potential customers and publish your tweets at the times you are most likely to engage people.

Step #6: Drive Traffic to Your Website and Blog

Twitter is a great tool for driving traffic to your website and blog. To do this, you create a tweet around a link, writing a message that compels people to click to learn more.

Tweet with link

Because space is at a premium in a tweet, there isn’t room to post the entire web address. That’s why all of the Twitter tools allow you to shorten your web addresses using a URL shortener.

Twitter url shortener

When you use Twitter.com, the Twitter URL shortener uses just 20 characters for your web address, no matter how long the actual web address.

Step #7: Connect Your Online Presence

Now that you have Twitter rolling along, it’s time to integrate it into your overall online business presence.

There are three ways to do this:

  1. Add your Twitter account information to the social media account information on your website and blog. Most of the social follow tools used on websites and blogs allow you to add your Twitter account easily and quickly to your list of social media accounts. Note: Twitter offers a Follow button you can add to your website or blog.Twitter social media button
  2. Add a timeline of your Twitter messages to your website and blog. Twitter provides widgets that allow you to share a tweet timeline on your website and blog. This can be a great way to share your Twitter conversations with your website visitors, getting double exposure from the same effort.Twitter widget exampleNote: You want to make sure that the tweets you share contribute to your business story, so be selective about which tweets you share on your website.
  3. Make it easy for people to share your website and blog content on Twitter. There are several ways you can add a Tweet This button to your blog posts and website pages, including a tweet button from Twitter. This allows your visitors to easily write a tweet about your content and share it with their followers.Tweet button on SME

Another way you can move the Twitter conversation to your blog or website is by embedding a tweet. This allows you to select any tweet and insert it into a blog post, for example. By embedding the tweet, you allow people who visit your blog post to jump into the Twitter conversation.

Embed tweet example

 

Step #8: Get Mobile With Twitter

Nearly every cell phone can connect you with your Twitter audience.

  • Smartphones (iOS, Android, Windows and Blackberry) allow you to use the Twitter app and Twitter mobile website to easily send and receive tweets.
  • Non-smartphones with texting service (SMS) allow you to use Twitter using text messages.

Twitter iPhone app

Twitter allows you to set up push notifications to your smartphone so you know when selected activities happen on Twitter:

  • People mention you
  • Someone retweets or favorites a tweet you sent
  • You get a new follower
  • Someone sends you a direct message

With Twitter, a speedy response is best, and push notifications make it easy for you to know when things are happening for you on Twitter.

Related: How To Use LinkedIn To Promote Your Business?

Step #9: Share Photographs in Your Tweets

People love to look at pictures, so include photographs in your tweets whenever possible. You don’t have to be a professional photographer or have a fancy camera. All you need is a smartphone.

You can share your photograph from your desktop on Twitter.com or from the Twitter app on your mobile phone. Get into the habit of taking photos of your business activities that you can share with your Twitter community.

Twitter integrates into your smartphone’s camera roll. This allows you to easily share photos you have taken with your Twitter followers.

Twitter post photo from mobile

Twitter adds the photo to your tweet and makes it available for everyone to see.

Tweet with photo hidden

Tweet with photo online

Twitter adds every photo you share to a photo (and video) gallery. The first six appear on your profile page. Take advantage of this feature to share pictures that tell your business story.

Twitter photo gallery

Step #10: Add Video to Your Twitter Timeline

Video is another powerful way to tell people about your business.

You can add videos to your Twitter timeline, but you cannot add them directly from Twitter. You must first upload them to another service like YouTube, and then link to them in your tweet.

Twitter video in a tweet

When a tweet contains a link to a video, Twitter allows you to play the video within the tweet. Click on View media to open the video player.

Recently, Twitter launched a new video service called Vine that allows you to take short, 6-second videos from the Vine app and play them on an endless loop inside Twitter.

Vines tweet

Like other videos, simply click View media to start playing the Vine video attached to a tweet.

Vines tweet open

Twitter also adds your Vine videos to your profile gallery.

Step #11: Organize Your Followers Into Conversation Lists

As you follow more people, it can be challenging to focus on the information coming from specific people and groups. That’s where Twitter lists come in.

A Twitter list allows you to separate the Twitter accounts you follow into groups. You might create separate lists for:

  • Customers
  • Potential customers
  • Neighborhood or community businesses
  • Trade or professional organizations
  • People who inspire you
  • People you talk with the most

A list allows you to see the tweets from the list members as a separate Twitter timeline. This distinguishes them from the crowd so you can pay attention to what these people say. You can also share tweets from a list on your website using a widget (explained in this article).

You can organize your lists in any way that helps you. You can create one or many lists. You can also make your lists public or private.

  • When you create a public list, list members see when you add or delete them from the list, and anyone can choose to follow your list.
  • When you create a private list, people don’t know they appear on it and only you can see the list’s tweet timeline.

To review the public lists created by any Twitter user, display their profile page. Then click Lists in the left menu. Their public lists appear in the right column.

Twitter lists example

To view the tweet timeline for the members of a list, click on the list name.

Twitter list timeline

To add someone to a list, display his or her profile. Click the gear icon and choose add or remove from lists. Then check or uncheck them from your list of Twitter lists.

Twitter add person to list

Step #12: Expand Your Audience With Hashtags

Most people’s Twitter experience is limited to the people they follow. It’s always a good idea to keep looking for new, fresh voices to follow to keep expanding your online conversations.

There are two great ways to expand your Twitter audience beyond your circle.

Hashtags appear in tweets to identify a common topic or theme. They use the pound (or hash) sign followed by a unique identifier. For example:

  • #sxswi is the hashtag for the conference, South by Southwest Interactive
  • #NCAA is the hashtag for the US college sports association
  • #VZW is the hashtag for Verizon Wireless
  • #FF is the hashtag for Follow Friday, a way to promote people on Twitter

Scroll through your timeline to spot tweets with a hashtag.

Twitter GetGlue hashtag

When you see a tweet with a hashtag, click on the hashtag to see a list of all tweets that include the same hashtag. You will see tweets from people you do not follow.

Twitter GetGlue hashtag list

If you attend a conference, the conference may ask all of the attendees to include the conference hashtag in their tweets. This way, hashtags pull together the conference tweets into one huge conversation, even though you may not be following all of those people.

You can create a hashtag unique for your business and use it in your marketing to help people find your company and the conversations around it. In fact, hashtags are a great way to use Twitter for customer service and support.

Step #13: Pinpoint Potential Local Customers

People often think that social media allows you to connect with people outside of your local geography. And while that is true, one of the great strengths of Twitter is the ability to focus on people in your own backyard.

Most businesses need local customers. You can use Twitter to help you find potential customers who live and work near your business. Use Twitter Advanced Search to find people near your location.

Twitter advanced search

Use the Places feature to identify your location by city or zip code. Twitter displays a list of people who are tweeting near that location.

Twitter local search

Use this tweet timeline to find people who may be potential customers. You can follow them or add them to a potential local customer list. It’s the first step to engaging them in conversation.

Take Your Twitter Use for Business to the Next Level

After you master these Twitter skills, there are still more ways you can use Twitter to meet your business goals. Here are a few of them to inspire you.

  • Start measuring your Twitter performance. It’s much easier to get better results when you have solid data about how your Twitter strategies are working.
  • Focus on building your Twitter community. There are tools that allow you to analyze who is following you and reach out to your target audience. Together, these can make your Twitter marketing far more effective.
  • Learn which tweets are most effective with your audience. Use Twitter tools to test alternative tweets to see which one really gets a better response.
  • Expand your Twitter conversation topics. Add more variety to your conversations and pull in more audience engagement.
  • Fine-tune your Twitter presence to get better results. When you hit a slump, it’s time to make small adjustments that add up to a stronger Twitter presence.

Your Turn

Use these suggestions to launch (or relaunch) your business’s Twitter presence.

What do you think? Are you ready to reboot your Twitter experience? Are you ready to jump into the Twitter pool? Share your experience and “ah-ha!” moments here with us.

http://www.socialmediaexaminer.com/how-to-use-twitter-for-business-and-marketing/

Can you still make money with AdSense?

Can you still make money with AdSense?

AdSense is perhaps the most popular way to make money online but is it for real? Can you still make money with AdSense? Can you make a living out of AdSense?  I will try and give you honest answers based on my experiences as an AdSense user but also examples from successful websites that are using AdSense.

What is Google AdSense?

The majority of Internet users are probably aware of Google AdSense but for the sake of keeping beginners up-to-date here is a quick overview about the program and major benefits:

  • It is owned by Google
  • It’s a major source of income for Google (On 2012 Q3 earnings from AdSense was $3.13 billion which represents around 27% of Google’s revenue)
  • It is free for publishers
  • Advertisers use the Adwords program to advertise their products or services on AdSense websites. They only pay when someone clicks on their ads (PPC – Pay per click)
  • Publishers receive 68% of the revenue and Google 32%. For example if an advertiser pays $1 for a click then 68 cents will go to the publisher and 32 cents to Google.
  • The cost per click calculation is based on an auction type system
  • It is very easy to use
  • It is the most reliable advertising platform on the Internet  today and can generate the most revenue for publishers (compared to other similar PPC systems)
  • AdSense besides content web sites is also available for games, videos, mobiles and search products.

You can find out more details about Google AdSense in the AdSense Help Center.

What do you need to make money with AdSense?

So, AdSense is free, easy to use, you get 68% of the revenue – what else do you need to make money with AdSense?

You need a content rich website

AdSense loves content rich websites. Content can be of any kind (including text, images, videos), provided that it does not violate the AdSense content policies.

It is suggested though to have text on the pages as well so that the AdSense crawler can understand better what the website is about. AdSense is more suitable for websites that publish articles, case studies, how-to guides (like this one), but there are also success stories of other types of websites as well.

You need a high quality website

It’s not enough to publish content that does not violate AdSense content policies but you also need to provide for high quality content on a high quality web site. Google is liable to advertisers for the money the pay so they don’t want their ads to appear on low quality websites. In the past this was possible but the last couple of years they have more strict policies on the type of websites you can run AdSense.

You need a LOT of traffic

AdSense is a good way to make money online and it is perhaps the easiest method provided that you have a good amount of quality traffic coming to your website. I cannot give you an exact number because the amount of money you can make depends on the earnings per click (EPC) and click through rate (CTR), but I don’t usually advice my clients to run AdSense on websites that have less than 300-400 unique visits per day.

In general though, the more targeted traffic you have, the more money you can make with AdSense.

You need to target the right keywords

If you target the right keywords in your content then you can make more money with AdSense or with any other advertising platform. What are the right keywords? Keywords that are: (1) used by advertisers to promote their products so the competition is greater and (2) action keywords. Action keywords are more effective since the users are more likely to ‘take action’ i.e. convert after they click.

Let’s look at the following example: Assume that you have 2 websites in the weight loss niche that are running AdSense. Both websites receive the same amount of organic traffic and they have the ads in the same positions. The first one is getting visitors searching for: ‘weight loss tips’, ‘how to lose weight’, ‘lose belly fat’ and the other one is getting traffic from keywords like: ‘why drinking water is important’, ‘what to eat after dinner’, ‘how many meals to eat per day’.

The first website is likely to make more money with AdSense because more advertisers are interested for those keywords so the number of available relevant ads will be greater. Users are also likely to click the ads more often since users looking for tips or solutions to their problem are more likely to click on a relevant ad than users who are searching for general information.

This is also the reason why organic traffic is considered to be more valuable than any other form of traffic i.e. because it is highly targeted and converts better.

You need to fully comply with AdSense policies

As I said above AdSense represents 1/3 of Google’s revenue so they take the whole program very seriously. While it is relatively easy for everyone to get an AdSense account, if you don’t play by their rules 100% you risk losing your account.

Even if you are an existing or new AdSense publisher make sure that you read their policies before implementing AdSense on your website. Remove from your mind any ideas for tricking the system and always remember that they have hired the best people to make sure that nobody will be able to bypass their rules and policies.

You need to have a website with a purpose and not a MFA (made for AdSense) website

While AdSense is a great way to monetize a website, websites that are made for the sole purpose of running AdSense ads are not favorable by Google. What is important to understand is that your website or blog needs to have a clear purpose which goes beyond making money with AdSense.

Yes, you can use AdSense to make money from an established blog that has lots of traffic and visitors; you can use AdSense to make some extra money from you website while selling your own products and services as well, but it’s not a very good idea to make a blog and start publishing mediocre content for the sole purpose of getting organic visits and then run AdSense to make money. In the past this model may have worked, but not anymore.

Examples of websites making money with AdSense

To be more precise let me give you a couple of examples from websites that make money with AdSense. While reading the examples try to relate these websites with what I have explained above and try to understand how they have applied in practice all the guidelines.

Example 1: Digital Photography School

DPS is owned by Darren Rowse, the all famous Australian problogger. Darren was among the first people who managed to make a living online and if you read his story and income spread, AdSense played a very important role especially in the beginning.  Let’s see how he is utilizing AdSense on DPS.

DPS Adsense 1

DPS Adsense 2

DPS Adsense 3

He is using the maximum amount of Ads per page (3 units). One of the ads is ‘above the fold’ and the other two are below the fold but in the main content area and not sidebar (as we will below, this is very important).

Example 2: Spark People

Spark people is a community based website dedicated to healthy living. According to Alexa they generate more than 1,000,000 page views per day and they use AdSense alongside their own products and services.

SparkPeople Adsense 1

SparkPeople Adsense 2

As you can see from the screenshot above, they are using 3 AdSense units, 2 above the fold and one below, but all 3 are in the main content area and not sidebar.

Example 3: Calorie Secrets

I also use Adsense on caloriesecrets.net. Instead of charging for the products we are offering (calorie counter, food tracker, diet plan), we decided to have the products free and use AdSense to monetize our content.

I am using 3 AdSense ads per page, 1 above the fold and 2 below.

Calorie Secrets Adsense 2

Calorie Secrets Adsense 2

What is common in all the above websites?

After seeing the above examples, can you tell what they have in common?

  1. They are content rich websites, offering top quality content
  2. They have lots of traffic (CalorieSecrets does not get the same amount of visits as DPS or SparkPeople but with 100,000 organic visits per month is enough to make money with AdSense).
  3. They fully comply with Adsense policies.
  4. They fully comply with webmaster guidelines.
  5. Although they have Ads above the fold, they are not interfering or damaging the user experience.
  6. They all have their ads in the main content are and not sidebar. The reason is simple: Click through Rate (CTR) in the main content area is greater than the sidebar and this translates to more clicks i.e. more money from AdSense.
  7. They all offer other services/products and are not operating for the sole purpose of running AdSense.

Can you make a living with AdSense?

I have explained above what it takes to make money with AdSense but can you also make a living? In other words can you depend 100% on AdSense for all your expenses?

The answer is NO. The reason is not that you cannot make thousands of dollars per month with AdSense and make a good living, but because you cannot rely on a single source of income.

The on-line World is more dynamic than the offline World and you cannot assume that you will always have thousands of people that will visit your website and click on Ads and you cannot assume that AdSense will exist forever. Maybe it will, but you cannot base your income on it. Diversifying your risks and spreading your revenues is always the best practice either online or offline.

Conclusion

AdSense is perhaps the easiest, more reliable and best way to make money online. Provided that your website meets the criteria explained above, you can enjoy a good monthly revenue by utilizing your content and the hours you spend online in the best possible way.

On the other hand, you should not rely solely on AdSense if you plan to escape from the 09:00-05:00 and make a living online. Take a look at any example you want from people who work online. Everybody agrees that AdSense is great but you should have other income sources as well.

Written by Alex Chris

This article originally appeared on https://www.reliablesoft.net/can-you-still-make-money-with-adsense/