Tạp trí Internet Marketing Số 30 - Feb -2014


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Tạp trí Internet Marketing Số 30 - Feb -2014

  2. 2. MEET OUR EXPERT PANEL Neil Patel is the co-founder of Crazy Egg, Hello Bar and KISSmetrics. He helps companies like Amazon, NBC, GM, HP and Viacom grow their revenue. The Wall Street Journal calls him a top influencer on the web and Entrepreneur Magazine says he created one of the 100 most brilliant companies in the world. He was recognized as a top 100 entrepreneur under the age of 30 by President Obama and one of the top 100 entrepreneurs under the age of 35 by the United Nations. Neil has also been awarded Congressional Recognition from the United States House of Representatives. Read his article on Increasing Blog Visits on PAGE 16 Chris Garrett is an online business consultant, teacher, coach, new media industry commentator, writer (some might argue that point), speaker, and all-round web geek. Chris has been involved in several startups and has written for some of the web’s best-loved blogs. Read his article on Getting Results with 20% of Content on PAGE 22 Lee Odden is the CEO at TopRank Online Marketing and Author of Optimize. For over 15 years, Lee have been helping many of the most respected B2B and consumer brands develop winning digital and online marketing strategies that focus on growing awareness, increasing engagement and driving customer acquisition. Read his article on Customizing for Customers on PAGE 26 Jon Henshaw is the co-founder and Chief Product Officer (CPO) for Raven Internet Marketing Tools, an online marketing management and reporting platform. He has been involved with website development and Internet strategy since 1995. Read his article on SEO on PAGE 30 CONTENTS 5 1Expert commentary on what are the big plays that have recently happened online and how they affect you. 8 1Steven Essa shares his secrets for getting high conversions using webinars in an exclusive interview with Internet Marketing Magazine. 16 1Discover How to Grow Your Blog to 100K Visits a Month Within 1.5 Years 22 26 1How to Get 80% of the Results with 20% of the Content 1Learn Why A Transition From Optimizing for Search Engines to Optimizing for Customers is Essential 30 33 1Learn Website Scott Dudley is a direct response copywriter from Perth, Australia, and he specializes in writing sales letters and emails for his clients. You can find his impressive portfolio at www.scottdudley.net/blog/portfolio. Or you can contact Scott for a free consultation at www.scottdudley.net/blog/contact Read his article on How to Win Battle of the Inbox on PAGE 33 2 internet marketing magazine february 2014 How To AnimalProof Your 1Win the Battle of the Inbox
  3. 3. LETTER FROM THE EDITOR W helcome to the first Internet Marketing Magazine issue of 2014. It is set to be a big year in Digital Marketing, and we will keep you up to date with the latest news as it happens. If you haven’t got access to the member’s area please feel free to do at http://internetmarketingmag.net/become-member/ (it’s free). This month’s complete audio interview with Steven Essa has now been added. It has lots of sections in it that were not included in the magazine, so be sure to check it out. Our Google Play App is now fixed and gets updated roughly one day after the Apple Newsstand issue. So please feel free to check it out if you are on Android. A special thanks to those who have left reviews in the apple platforms as it really helps us out. If you are getting good value from Internet Marketing Magazine and you can spare 1 minute of your time to click this link to give us a quick honest review that would be greatly appreciated (click ‘view in iTunes’ then scroll down and click ‘write a review’, thanks :). NEW: Send us a screenshot of your review in iTunes (info@ internetmarketingmag.net) and we will send you some great Internet Marketing Training resources that I have put together in recent months based on what we are doing in the marketing agency that is working right now. Regards, Greg Cassar Greg Cassar is Australia’s leading Internet Marketing Strategist. With InternetMarketingDoneForYou.com Greg & his team provide traffic, development and conversion optimization services for medium to large businesses, enterprises & eCommerce stores looking for serious growth online. You can follow Greg’s latest updates by subscribing to Internet Marketing Magazine at InternetMarketingMag.net for the new members area and the latest issue updates. internet marketing magazine february 2014 3
  4. 4. > INTERNET UPDATE THE STATE OF THE INTERNET In this section of Internet Marketing Magazine our editor Greg Cassar cover’s the facts and provides expert commentary on what are the big plays that have recently happened online and how they affect you. > THE MAC TURNS 30 Whilst this is not a purely ‘Internet’ story it is important because just about every switched on entrepreneur that I know runs his or her business on a Mac. This year the Apple Mac turns 30. Starting from humble beginnings back in 1984, the graphical user interface made computing easier for millions of users as they no longer needed to type in commands. Despite it’s radical design, sales on the Mac struggle for years. The Apple Mac has always been popular with publishers, educators and graphics artists. Most corporates stuck with IBM and its clones running windows. In recent years the Mac is now cool, largely riding off the success of the iPod, iPhone and iPad. Apple has gone from a company that 4 internet marketing magazine february 2014 nearly went bust in the 1990s to now being the world’s most valuable company. Many entrepreneurs like Macs for the reliability, clean quality design and a higher level of resistance to viruses. Thankyou Steve Jobs for a great invention. > GOOGLE’S MATT CUTTS ADVISES GUEST BLOGGING IS ‘DONE’ Google spokesman Matt Cutts recently advised “guest blogging is done; it’s just gotten too spammy. In general I wouldn’t recommend accepting a guest blog post unless you are willing to vouch for someone personally or know them well. Likewise, I wouldn’t recommend relying on guest posting, guest blogging sites, or guest blogging SEO as a linkbuilding strategy”
  5. 5. > INTERNET UPDATE So does this mean that you shouldn’t do guest blog posts at all? I don’t think so. If you are a reputable authority and the post is for a reputable authority blog then I don’t believe there is an issue as Google isn’t stamping out multiple author blogs. Advertising is about to get interactive as user can click the ad to expand it and also comment on it directly from the website they are on. I believe the point Google is trying to make here is don’t accept guest blog posts from people who you do not know; who are not ‘authorities’ in your field; or who are just fishing for links back to their site. Also don’t do guest blog posts on low-authority or ‘spammy sites’. Until 2013, there were only 22 functioning gTLDs (Internet Top Level Domains). The most popular of these are .com followed by .net and .org. > +POST ADS TURNS THE ENTIRE WEB INTO A SOCIAL STREAM Google has begun testing a new ad type called +Post ads. These +Post ads are display ads of brands’ Google+ video, image and hangout posts. > THE WEBS BIG DOMAIN GOLD RUSH About 1,000 new generic top-level domain names, or gTLDs (the last bit of an internet address, such as the com in google.com) have come into existence now as of February the 4th. You may be thinking ‘why create a whole new bunch of gTLDs if .jobs, .travel and the like got so little interest?’ It is because .com is running out of available suitable names. The ad format effectively takes Google+ and spreads it around the web in ad format for brands. Website visitors can comment on posts in the ad and share them within their circles all from within the Ad. Google plans on rolling this out on a big scale across 2 million Google Display Network sites. Google advises “This lets brands think of the entire web as their social stream.” Below is an example of a +Post ad from early testers Toyota on the Google Display Network. Certainly there will be some brands that really do well out of having a domain that is not a .com eg. Bit.ly. But for many years to come I believe that the .com will still be the premium domain. The reason why is because most people are trained to go to .com and by building a brand name at another high level domain, whoever owns the .com version of your brand name will be able to steal your traffic without any effort because of human nature and habits. internet marketing magazine february 2014 5
  6. 6. > INTERNET UPDATE > FACEBOOK PAID “FREE TRAFFIC” best quality content is being produced, surfaced and shared. Our latest update to the News Feed ranking algorithm helps ensure that the organic content people see from Pages they are connected to is the most interesting to them.” What this effectively means if we put it into plain English is that when you make a post on Facebook it will now only reach a fraction of the people that it did just a few months ago. You can still get the same visibility for your personal or brand posts but you will need to ‘boost’ them. An example of ‘Boost Post’ Facebook recently announced on their business blog “Our goal is to show the right content to the right people at the right time so they don’t miss the stories that are important to them. As part of that we want to make sure that the Effectively Facebook has made previously free traffic now be paid. I don’t believe they will achieve what they set out to achieve as people’s newsfeeds will now be just wedding pictures and cat pictures from people they ‘like’ regularly as well as brands who have paid to put their messages in the middle. Personally I welcome the change as most marketers won’t know to boost their posts or will be too tight to do so. IMM > 6 internet marketing magazine february 2014 ADVERTISEMENT
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  8. 8. > COVER STORY: EXPERT INTERVIEW “ If you can’t close someone at the end of a 90-minute webinar and they don’t buy, you have a very, very slim chance they’re going to come back later and buy from you. “ 8 internet marketing magazine february 2014 ALL ABOUT STEVEN ESSA • Steven Essa is an Australian Internet Marketer with a large track record of success, particularly in the Webinar space. • Steven has an interesting background with going from a Panel Beater to a Rock Star playing large arena’s such as at ‘The Big Day Out’, to now being a full time digital marketer. • Steven and his clients have done over $20m in sales from Webinars
  9. 9. > COVER STORY: EXPERT INTERVIEW STEVEN ESSA WEBINAR MILLIONS An Interview by Internet Marketing Strategist Greg Cassar How did you get started online? Steven: I came back from Los Angeles following my music business days. I started building up a portfolio of property really quickly, with zero down, and then the crash came in 2008. I remember thinking ‘this property strategy’s not very good, if you don’t have cash flow - how can I generate cash flow?’ I then re-read the Robert Kyosaki ‘Rich Dad Poor Dad’ book. He said build a business, and I knew that there was no better business to build than an Internet business. medium that has really taken the world by storm, and I’ve been teaching it now since the end of 2008. It’s a platform that gets a higher conversion rate than any other form of Internet marketing. I believe it’s because you’re engaging more of people’s senses. They get a sense of who you are. It’s much more powerful than a website. A webinar can be live, or it can be prerecorded. You can access people globally, and you can do it easily through a system called GoToWebinar. I went to a seminar to learn how to help my boss’s business, initially. I believe that if you don’t have an idea or a product then go and build someone else’s business on the Internet first for them. I learned some strategies there that made my boss around $106,000 in the next 4 months. Of course, I couldn’t have done it without his customers and without his database. It was six months later that I quit and I started my own information business. I’ve never looked back. It’s been a great ride. What is a Webinar and why do you like webinars so much? Steven: Webinar is short for ‘web seminars’, so you can do a seminar on the web. It’s a My first 10 websites never made me any money, but my first webinar made me $594 in sales. I didn’t even have the product ready at that point. It’s just a powerful tool that’s leveraged. You can interview experts, you can do all sorts of things, but basically it’s the higher conversion rate, and the ease at which you can launch new information out to your database and keep them connected that I love the most. internet marketing magazine february 2014 9
  10. 10. > COVER STORY: EXPERT INTERVIEW Greg: What’s Your Experience with Google Hangouts? Steven: Recently I did a Google Hangout and then I did the same presentation with a PowerPoint the normal webinar way. We test everything all the time, and we just found that it worked much better with the standard PowerPoint webinar model. The audience don’t have to see you. If you want them to see you, they can. We believe you will get a higher conversion if the audience is not looking at your face unless you are an amazing highly polished presenter. What are the Different Webinar Business Models? Steven: I use all different models, but in a nutshell, I do what’s called the show and tell webinar model. This is basically where you take a product or a service or some information that you have and, just like when you were in school, you show and tell people what it is. If you’ve got experience in buying property, for example, you can show people how to buy property in a specific style or technique. Then, if you’ve got a product, you can basically do a demonstration on your product. Its commonly handled in this way “Welcome to the webinar today. We’re going to demonstrate how this software works and take some questions,” and then at the end, they can pitch the software and they’ll buy it. That’s a show and tell webinar. Normally they run from 60 to 90 minutes, and you can sell pretty much any product. I’ve sold products from $30 to $15,000 this way. There’s one for interviewing experts, and this is a great for list building. We previously set up a one year-long webinar schedule, where 10 internet marketing magazine february 2014 we set up a one hour show every week. We interviewed a different expert every week. In the first couple of months I got over 1,000 subscribers. This model is also great for building your authority, and for meeting people that you could possibly JV with in the future. I always tell my students, “You only need three or four really good joint venture partners to make $100,000-plus in an Internet business.” Greg: Do you prefer 60 or 90 minutes webinars? Steven: As a general rule, I always teach my students that, if you’re selling anything above $1,000, it’s going to need to be more around the 90-minute mark. If you’re selling a $30 eBook or a $297 course, it’s fine to run it for 60 minutes, but always make it as long as it needs to be. Don’t drag it on. That’s a big thing. Keep your webinar exciting, keep the content really good, make it flow nicely, and basically just get out of there when you need to. Don’t hang around any longer than you need to and waste people’s time. What traffic strategies have you found work well for getting people onto webinars? Steven: Well, we use everything. Number one on the list is joint ventures. We launched over 30 webinars last year, and all of them I think made money except maybe 1 or 2 of them, which we go back to the drawing board and say was the target market right and all of that. But we use joint ventures primarily as the main source, so I’ll either promote my list to
  11. 11. > COVER STORY: someone else’s webinar, because most people on your list haven’t bought your product. EXPERT INTERVIEW least seven figures. Greg: Wow, so JV’s more than anything else? Make sure they’ve got a good product, make sure they’ve got a good reputation and make sure that they can back it up. Joint venture is definitely the best. Every day, you should think about who are the people, the players in my field that I need to be getting out to their database? You should be able to name them in your industry. Go and research them on Google. Look who the big players are. Go to seminars, work out who’s got the list, and then you should be emailing them and then following up with a phone call every week, until they say yes or no to you. One of the webinars we launched was with one of our students who is a joint venture expert. She took a company from $700,000 a year to $4.3 million in 4 years, and they sold the company for over $11 million. She would get big companies, like even AON Insurance to joint venture with her, that put hundreds of thousands of dollars of meat on the table for that company, and she said, “I just kept following up.” She was polite; she’d just ring them up, “Hey, I just wanted to know if you’ve looked at my proposal yet. I’ve sent you the email, if there’s a win-win we can talk it through” and six months later sometimes she’ll get a yes, and then bang, that would be it. Just with that strategy alone, someone can have at Steven: JV’s, that’s it. There’s someone with a list right now, who’s got a database right now, who is not mailing them something like your product, you could fit perfectly in with them and they could make a ton of money and you could make a ton of money. Right now, they’re there, and tomorrow, you could go from where you are right now in income to skyrocketing. If you haven’t made any sales, you could go with a webinar right now, from zero to $10,000, $20,000, $30,000 in one webinar. I’ve got clients that have done $105,000 in their first webinar, just putting someone else on speaking to their database and bang, just making money that way, or going to someone’s database who’s got a list, and then you’ve got the product, and then making sales there. It’s a very, very fast way to accelerate your wealth. If you don’t want to do it that way, another thing we’ve done, and we’ve had great success with, is Facebook ads. But again, you’ve got to be mindful. You’ve got to make sure your targeting is right. You should get someone to do it for you that knows what they’re doing, and you should have a bit of a budget for it as well, but not every campaign I’ve run has made money. I’ve lost money on campaigns, but just the other day, I did a campaign. We spent $330 and I made 10 grand in sales, two $5,000 products were sold. Facebook ads are definitely something to consider and look at. Right now, we’ve got a campaign running for a seminar, and I sent out a direct mail. Direct mail is another great way to get traffic. Fortytwo percent of people have signed up as a result of sending a letter to them, and I’ve got less signups from my database. I think I’ve got 21 percent signups from my database, 44 or 45 percent opt-in rate from the direct mail letter. internet marketing magazine february 2014 11
  12. 12. > COVER STORY: EXPERT INTERVIEW of this webinar, you’ll know the step by step formula for doing that,” so I make you a big promise there, and then tell them who the webinar’s for. This is perfect for you, if you’re a coach, if you’re a trainer, if you’re an author. Webinars are fantastic for you. Social media has been pretty good. Actually, out of the social media that we’ve been promoting, Facebook profiles have been the best. We’ve been promoting through our profile, so build up your personal profile. Have lots of interaction, and then when you’re doing something, launch it on there to your Facebook community. Just make sure you can segment in Facebook different friends. I have it segmented. Whenever I meet someone from the Internet marketing business or we get a fan wanting to be friends, I’ll be friends with them, but I created a list called Internet Marketing, and then I have my personal friends. Whenever I broadcast on Facebook, I send it only to that Internet marketing list. What about the presentation? How would you outline the main stages of that webinar content process, from intro right through to close? Steven: As a general rule that we teach our students, if you’re doing a 60-minute webinar, you want to have an introduction, a middle, and a close. The introduction on a 60-minute webinar might run for 10 minutes, no more than 10 minutes. I’m sure you’ve seen webinars where the introduction just keeps going and going and going, and by introduction, normally the ingredients in there are just to give you some meat in this interview. Normally I want to introduce, “Hey everyone, welcome to the webinar. Today I’m about to reveal to you how you can– seven secrets for making big money with webinars. By the end 12 internet marketing magazine february 2014 Then talk about yourself. Say what led me to this webinar. “Well, I was trying to make sales the traditional way, and I was doing this and this and this, and then I found the webinar. The webinar converted 10 percent, so it was way better than just doing a normal website, which had made me zero sales, or 1 percent. That’s how I found webinars. Here’s some case studies and proof, bang, bang, bang,” and if people don’t have proof, they can just show some stats. “Hey, industry in webinars is a multi-billiondollar selling industry now,” and that should be no more than 10 minutes, to build your case on why they should hang around, why they should listen to you in the first 10 minutes on a 60-minute webinar. Then we have the content section, or the middle section of the presentation. What I like to teach is break it down into steps. People love steps. People can remember no more than seven steps. It’s like a shopping list.
  13. 13. > COVER STORY: Yes, seven steps maximum, but listen, there’s a caveat to that. If you’re doing a 60-minute webinar, five steps is all you’re going to get through. I always look for three, five, or seven steps. Test it out. Don’t be afraid to change. When I first started, I had seven steps. Then I went to five steps. Now, when I do my presentation on a webinar, I do three steps. The less is best. If you can fit your stuff into three steps and make it make sense, then do it. Let’s talk about the close. It’s obviously the most important part, and it can really vary, depending on your personal style and taste, as well as price point, which we spoke a little bit about before. What’s your thoughts on the different types of closes? Steven: I have three very simple closes. A lot of people don’t like to sell. I know, it’s hard to believe, and we’ve done research, but most people hate selling. There’s three types of closes that I’ve developed. One is what I call the soft sell. The soft sell is as simple as saying, “Hey guys, if you’ve enjoyed this webinar, then you’re going to absolutely love our book or our video course, which takes you through step by step in detail how to put a webinar together. It’s got the PowerPoint slides, and you just fill in the blanks. There’s email support there, everything you need to put together a webinar the fast way. If you want to go and do it EXPERT INTERVIEW yourself, fine, but our course is already done. It’s called Webinar Magic. It sells every day for $3,000 online, but if you grab it right now, then it’s only $2,000. Here’s the site where you can go and grab it.” Then we have a medium sell, which goes into a bit more detail and shows a couple of slides about what each product is. Let’s say, for example, you offer a course, a webinar course with some support and maybe with some Skype sessions. You might show in detail, on a few slides, what you’re covering in that course. Say, “Hey guys, if you’ve enjoyed this webinar, I’m going to take a moment if it’s okay with you, just to tell you about our course that’s called Webinar Magic, and here’s what it is. Here’s the eight webinars. This webinar, we talk about this and the benefits are . . .” And remember, when you’re selling in the close, the most important thing is to tell them the benefits. They don’t care if it’s a webinar. They don’t care if it’s a book. They want to know what they’re going to get out of it, right? There’s a thing we get, as when we create the product ourselves, we get into the steps, into the process. That’s what we get excited about, but people don’t care. They just want the results. They just want to make money, or they just want to have the property portfolio or they just want to have that result. Whenever you say something in the close of your presentation, like you say you’re going to get this DVD set, you have to say, “Which will help you to achieve this and this and this result, so you can be financially free, so you can kick back, so you can automate your sales process and work on other parts of the business, et cetera, et cetera.” Greg: Yes, so you’re turning those features into benefits, and ultimately the emotions that those benefits bring. internet marketing magazine february 2014 13
  14. 14. > COVER STORY: EXPERT INTERVIEW Steven: Yes, absolutely. That’s where the gold is. That’s where the sales come from. People don’t care about it. I’ve seen so many webinars; we pull up our students all the time. They go, “You get webinar one, where we show you how to do research. Webinar two, we show you how to set up a landing page. Webinar three -” it’s like, who cares? You’ve got to say, “Webinar two, we show you how to set up a landing page, so you get higher opt-ins, so you have to do less work, so you spend less money, so when you send traffic, you get 30, 40, 50 percent opt-in rate, which helps grow your business and make more money, so you can retire faster,” as opposed to, “Yes, we show you how to set up an opt-in page.” whatever your guarantee is. Make it irresistible. Build it right up, so at the end, it’s not going to be five million dollars, for today only, it’s going to be bang. Then, “Go here now to buy it. Go on now.” Really make a big push, really pressure them hard. It’s called the hard close. If you can’t close someone at the end of a 90-minute webinar and they don’t buy, you have a very, very slim chance they’re going to come back later and buy from you. Many people are interested in automation, especially for webinars. What’s the process for getting an automated webinar working? I know you’ve got an excellent platform in this space. I had a bit of access to that as well. Steven: Yes, just on automated webinars, the best way is just to set up–have a GoToWebinar account and set up a live webinar and just record it. What I find is when you put yourself on the spot, your voice goes up. Your passion goes up, when you know there’s people there, whereas when I tried to prerecord videos on the early days, there’s no one there and you just don’t get as pumped up. Then we have a hard sell, which is like typical infomercial style where we say, “Hey, if you’ve enjoyed this webinar, then you’re going to love this package. Here’s what it is. You get this part,” and it’s like eight webinars with this and this and this, and put the value on each thing. You say, “These eight webinars are valued at $2,000 by itself. Then you’re going to get email support, and in the email support, you can email me personally for twelve whole months. I’ll answer them personally for you, within 24 hours. That’s worth $5,000. Then, I will coach you as well,” You’re stacking everything up. Then you offer 14 internet marketing magazine february 2014 You can do it with a prerecorded, with Camtasia or Screenflow, and then what you do is you need to upload that. There’s many ways to prerecord a webinar. Our software, Webinator.biz, will make replaying a webinar easy for you.
  15. 15. > COVER STORY: EXPERT INTERVIEW How can our readers, listeners, subscribers, and members best find out more information from you online? Steven: We’ve got an event coming up called the Web Business Breakthrough, and you guys can come along for three days and get trained by my wife and I. I’ll be taking someone from the audience on the first day, to set up a webinar for, a random person, and then we’ll launch it on the Sunday. You can see how this whole process works, from me taking random people. It’s a three day event. We’ve sold it for $2,000 in the past, but you can come along for free, if you go to that website. Come along and learn all about it at that workshop. Just go to WebBusinessBreakthrough. com, and they’ll be able to sign up for that. We’re doing it in all cities around the world. Just register for that there, and we’ll email you next time we’ve got one coming up, if you can’t make it to those ones. IMM internet marketing magazine february 2014 15
  16. 16. > BLOGS HOW TO GROW YOUR BLOG TO 100K VISITS A MONTH WITHIN 1.5 YEARS By Neil Patel I ’ve done marketing for 20 of the top 100 blogs on the web, and I’ve created 3 blogs for my own businesses that achieved at least 100,000 visits a month. And with Crazy Egg, it took me 1 year and 6 months to hit 100,000 monthly visits: With Quick Sprout, it took me 4 years and 9 months to hit 100,000 monthly visits: As you can see from the graphs above, the amount of time it took me to hit the 100,000 mark decreased. I went from being able to achieve the goal in 4 years and 9 months to 1 year and 6 months. With KISSmetrics, it took me 1 year and 10 months to hit over 100,000 monthly visits: Luck has nothing to do with this achievement. I actually have a formula, which works every time. And if I leveraged it again today, I bet I could achieve similar results in less than 12 months. Here’s the formula I use to get blogs to 100,000 visits a month: Quantity is king With Quick Sprout, I noticed slight gains when posting 2 pieces of content a week instead of 1. KISSmetrics only started to see big traffic 16 internet marketing magazine february 2014
  17. 17. > increases when I started to publish 5 pieces of content a week. But with KISSmetrics, we went from publishing 2 a week straight to 5 a week. This is why KISSmetrics had a much faster growth rate than Quick Sprout. In addition to that, we recently started testing posting 6 pieces of content a week instead of 5. BLOGS blogs like Mashable, and it’s what caused a huge spike in traffic at KISSmetrics. Within 2 years, we were able to generate 2,512,596 visitors and 41,142 backlinks from 3,741 unique domains from 47 infographics. Just look at this screenshot of our traffic in August 2010: When we posted 5 a week, we had 422,885 visits a month. When we tested posting 6 articles a week, our traffic went up to 501,573 visits. And now look at our September 2010 traffic: By posting an additional blog post each week, we were able to increase our blog traffic by 18.6%. My experience of working with 20 of the top 100 blogs showed that if we published 3 pieces of content each day (21 pieces a week), we could easily get our traffic to over a million visits a month over time. When posting in high frequency, make sure you are still maintaining the quality of your content. Writing a lot of blog posts that are low in quality won’t help you see a big increase in traffic. Infographics The simplest way to increase your traffic is through infographics. This has worked well for We went from 56,380 to 146,197 visits because of infographics. This strategy was so effective that we started to create an infographic each week to boost our overall traffic. Still, today, even if we don’t publish an infographic, old ones generate at least 50,000 visits for us each month. internet marketing magazine february 2014 17
  18. 18. > BLOGS Write headlines for both people and search engines The one thing that all three of my blogs have in common is that they all get a lot of search engine traffic. “Why?” you may ask. It’s because we write blog headlines that appeal to both people and search engines. The beautiful part about these surges is that when they are over, your traffic is still a bit higher than it was before the spike. If you are interested in covering trending topics, you can use Google Trends to see what is hot. Make sure you don’t write on just any topic. The content needs to be relevant to your niche. With a quick search on Google Trends, you should be able to get a good idea on what is increasing and what’s decreasing in search volume. Write in a conversational tone Have you noticed that I get over 176 comments per blog post on Quick Sprout? It’s because I write in a conversational tone. Just look at the Crazy Egg blog. Last month, we had 127,373 visits from search engines. All because we write headlines for both Google and people. In the short run, you won’t notice much traffic from this strategy, but within 6 months, you’ll notice a nice increase in your search engine traffic. From that point, you’ll continue to see increases quarter over quarter. Cover trending topics Our biggest traffic days tended to be those when we covered major events within our niche. For example, with Quick Sprout, when I covered Google updates like Panda and Penguin, I saw a surge of traffic. The same thing happened when Hummingbird was covered on KISSmetrics. We also saw similar traffic trends when we blogged about Apple’s marketing around its events. 18 internet marketing magazine february 2014 Sure, you can use tricks like “top commenters” to try to boost your numbers, but by making your blog posts sound like a conversation, instead of an essay, you’ll invite more comments from people naturally. You can create the same effect on your blog by: • Using the words “you” and “I” within your content. • Asking questions throughout your blog post. • Making sure anyone can understand your content... In other words, write for a 5th grader. • Keeping your paragraphs short and to the point. Comments are a great way to increase your readers’ loyalty. If people continually comment on your blog, it means they are reading your content, and they are more likely to share it via the social web. Having multiple authors on your blog, instead of just one, decreases comments
  19. 19. > and engagement as your readers don’t have a chance to build a connection with you. Just look at the Crazy Egg and KISSmetrics blogs. We have multiple writers, and most of them don’t write in a conversational tone. As a result, those two blogs get far fewer comments than Quick Sprout’s blog does. If you take my friend’s blog (he ripped my design…you can too if you want), you’ll see that he only gets 2,000 visits a month, and yet some of his posts have 13 comments. That’s because he writes in a conversational tone. And if you are thinking about using Facebook comments to increase your engagement and social traffic, don’t. Every single popular blog I’ve worked with always receives more Google traffic than Facebook traffic. With Facebook comments, the comment text doesn’t get indexed by Google, which means you will get less search traffic. Collect emails through offers and opt-ins All the blogs I’ve created have a common trend… email is one of the biggest sources of traffic. BLOGS with your new blog post every time you publish it. Why? Because it will drive traffic, create more comments and, best of all, generate social shares. Email subscribers are3.9 times more likely to share your content than your other blog visitors. Content marketing doesn’t have to be a hitor-miss game The most important element of a blog post is its headline. No matter how good your content is, if your headline sucks, very few people will read the post. In most cases, content marketing is a hit or a miss: your content will be widely read or just ignored. But it doesn’t have to be this way. You can use tools like Social Crawlytics to see what sort of content has done well on competing blogs. For example, if you had a marketing blog and you wanted to see what was hot on Quick Sprout, you would just type in www.quicksprout.com and see a table that looks something like this: For the month of November, emails made up 18% of the traffic to Quick Sprout, 6% to KISSmetrics and 4% to Crazy Egg. Those percentages may not seem high, but there are two good reasons for that: 1. All three blogs get a lot of traffic, so small percentages still add up when it comes to visitor count. 2. Except for Quick Sprout, the blogs do a terrible job of collecting emails. If KISSmetrics and Crazy Egg were optimized like Quick Sprout, the numbers would have drastically gone up. Once you have an email list, you should blast it You can then sort the data by social site or by total count. In essence, it will show you all of the popular blog posts and their headlines. If you look at the top 5 posts, the advanced guide to seo, content marketing and growth hacking are 3 of them. That shows that if you create advanced guides and use similar to internet marketing magazine february 2014 19
  20. 20. > BLOGS mine headlines for marketing-related topics, you too can get a lot of traffic. Build up your social media profiles Another commonality among all three of the blogs I created is that they all get a lot of traffic from social media sites. In the last 30 days: • KISSmetrics received 36,862 visits from social sites. • Crazy Egg received 5,976 visits form social sites. • Quick Sprout received 25,350 visits from social sites. Partner up Within a few months of launching the Crazy Egg blog, I was able to grow it to over 30,000 visits a month. Do you know how? No, it wasn’t through SEO or even social media. It was through partnerships. The first partnership I went after was the Smashing Magazine Network. Because we were included in their RSS feed, we were able to get from them 22,181 visits a month. How are we able to achieve these results? It’s because we build up our social profiles. You can do it too if you follow this strategy: • First, tackle the social media low hanging fruit through these 12 steps. • Then, follow the steps and data in this infographic to maximize your Twitter traffic. • Accept all of the friend requests on Facebook and then follow these steps to maximize your Facebook traffic. • Lastly, make sure you are publishing your posts during peak hoursso you get the most social engagement. The cost for this was $0. All we had to do was place a badge on our blog that stated we were in the Smashing Magazine network. When building up your social profiles, you have to be patient. It typically takes 6 months to see consistent social media traffic to your blog. It’s not the only network on the web… before that, I was part of the 9rules network. There are a lot of blog networks out there. You just have to find the ones your space. In addition to focusing on major social media sites, consider leveraging smaller ones in your niche. For example Inbound and Growth Hackers are two social sites that focus on the marketing niche. In an average month, Inbound drives around 1,700, and Growth Hackers around 400, visits to my site. It may not seem like a lot, but it all adds up. But don’t stop with blog networks. You can also share your content with other blogs in exchange for them driving traffic back to your blog. Business Insider has taken posts from Quick Sprout such as this one. I asked Business Insider to link back to my blog within the post, which they gladly did. Popular blogs like Business Insider are looking for more content. If you provide it to them, 20 internet marketing magazine february 2014
  21. 21. > BLOGS they won’t have an issue linking back to your site and driving thousands of visits to you. To get these partnerships, you have to continually reach out to popular blogs in your space. Most won’t accept your content or let you join their network, but for every 10 blogs you hit up, at least 1 will say, “yes.” Conclusion It may have taken me years to get Quick Sprout to 100,000 visits a month, but it shouldn’t take you that long. When I started Quick Sprout, social sites like Facebook and Twitter weren’t as popular as they are now. You have more sites and partnerships you can leverage today than you ever had, and people are craving more good blog content than they ever did before. Why not give it a shot? Follow the steps above, and you should hit 100,000 visits a month in no time. So, what other tactics can you use to get to 100,000 visits a month? IMM internet marketing magazine february 2014 21
  22. 22. > CONTENT HOW TO GET 80% OF THE RESULTS WITH 20% OF THE CONTENT By Chris Garrett When should you write? How often? How long should your blog posts be? Should you have a schedule? I gget asked these questions and similar every week, between emails, Q&A calls/webinars, and clients. Content is becoming super important. We used to talk about if content was king or not. Now, I see a shift. The content creator is now king. Keeping the crown is getting tougher than ever, though. The problem is, people get caught up in thinking they don’t have time, are not good enough, not creative enough. People who have a lot to share are giving up out of frustration, feeling like they are just not cut out for this whole content business. And that’s not true in almost all cases. Business as usual is not helping. The old dogma is causing frustration. There are a few challenges here. 1. First, while there are standard answers that have grown around the blogging world, that doesn’t mean those answers are right for you. 2. Next, it could be that giving yourself a bit of flexibility means you are more likely to succeed, and too rigid an approach causes you to be less productive. 22 internet marketing magazine february 2014 3. Finally, it’s really not about the writing, but about what the writing does that counts. Let’s start with a discussion of the options … The benefits of more content, more often It’s fair to say, if you can, then producing more content has certain advantages. Each piece of content is potentially another soldier in your promotion army. More content, in general, means more traffic, links, engagement, opt-ins, and so on. Posting more articles, more often, also sends strong signals to your audience and also search engines that you are still around. When you don’t hear from someone for a while, you forget or wonder if they are still relevant. I know I have had questions about if I am still blogging here or not! Writing schedule In some niches the expectation will be that not only do you have something new daily, but
  23. 23. > maybe multiple times per day. I am thinking niches such as tech and gadgets. CONTENT • You can source better graphics and links. • You can repurpose your content into different media. • You can spend more time promoting your article. What about content length? If you write less often then you can write longer articles, right? It’s difficult for me to tell folks to write short articles because I tend to write quite long. In fact, in this article, I made an effort to write less than I ordinarily do, but it still ended up over 1,000 words. There is no right or wrong answer about content length. Write as much as it takes, and then stop! If you write about breaking news then you need to get your content out immediately, because the early bird catches the worm. If, though, you write editorial, how-to, or anything not on a super strict timescale, then take a pause. The second mouse gets the cheese. So does this mean you should write on a schedule? Perhaps starting with weekly? Not necessarily, but we will get to that in a moment. There can be a significant audience benefit if they can start to anticipate new content on a regular basis, however. The benefit of fewer articles If you have to write less often then you can spend more of your time on those few articles to get them just right. • You can spend more time researching. • You can polish and edit more. Usually an article will benefit from editing. Trimming down will aid consumption, especially in these distracted times. Attention spans are stretched, but that does not mean you can not write in-depth articles. They just have to capture attention and be worth it. Which brings us to the main point. Don’t judge content on length or frequency! The most important question is not “when” or “how much”, but “what”. Only write when you have something to share. If you have to force your writing, because you haven’t written enough, or you have a schedule to keep, then your writing will suffer. It’s more important that you have impact than a tick in a box. Agree? If you write for people and not page views or search traffic then you should at least consider it. So how do you write with impact? internet marketing magazine february 2014 23
  24. 24. > CONTENT Writing for impact rather than page views Writing for impact is an art rather than a science, but there are certain things that you need to do: 1. Write with a goal – what is the outcome you intend to create? If your writing does not have a purpose then it is difficult for you to know if you have succeeded or not. 2. Mine the emotion – if you want to get people to think a certain way or do a certain thing then you need to move them. Inspire, motivate, tell emotional stories, reveal your inner truths and vulnerabilities. Share your challenges and struggles. 3. WIIFM – most of human interaction has an element of “What’s In It For Me?”. If the reader doesn’t grasp what’s in it for them right away, well, then you have failed. 4. Consumption – I am not super strict on grammar (as you can probably tell), but I do attempt to edit. Editing for brevity is great, but also edit to make things crystal clear and remove any road-blocks to consumption. If your audience doesn’t consume your message all the way through then they won’t take action on it, and they won’t spread it. Make it skimmable, engaging, and easy to get through. 5. It’s not what you mean, it’s what they understand – Closely related to the last point. I know for a fact there will be people who read this article and will take away a message I never intended. It always happens. Sometimes people take what you say out of context intentionally. Sometimes people hallucinate whole phrases you never wrote. People will second-guess your intentions. You can’t help that, but you can work on your message to get it across as well as you can. It’s your responsibility to communicate with as few chances of distortions as possible. 6. Get agreement – If you want to persuade then you need to be on the page. Get 24 internet marketing magazine february 2014 agreement early and often. Build up to your main point with sound arguments. Don’t just bludgeon people with ideas or facts. Can you see where I asked questions in this post? 7. Link back – Linking to your older articles gives them new life and also gives strong hints to search engines. If you do nothing else, make sure you always link back to your older gems from your archives. 8. Link out – Not only will linking out help your audience, but it is great for search engines too. It might get you noticed by other bloggers if you are lucky. 9. Images – You must have noticed with Facebook and Pinterest that people LOVE images. I like to use my own photographs because they add some unique personality to my pages, but you don’t have to be an artist or photographer, as the images on today’s article prove! 10. Call to action – Go back to your goal. Tell people what you want them to do, what’s in it for them, and what to do next. Make it easy to share. Make headlines and URLs work in social media. Best of both? Now you know why so many sites like Copyblogger, Social Media Examiner, and so on are multi-author blogs. It’s difficult to sustain quantity, schedule and quality on your own. For the solo operator, you will probably have to make a choice.
  25. 25. > What you have to keep in mind if you go the team route is the audience still needs you to captain your ship. Don’t lose your voice by creating a crowd. Bottom Line What do you remember from this article? What would you take away? If I have done my job correctly then you ought to remember that it is the impact you have that counts, not how much you write and not how often. There is a good reason why my list has continued to grow despite not writing for weeks! That said, you have to take into account … • Niche expectations CONTENT • The kind of content you are creating • Your intentions behind the content • What you are capable of I write in order to gather a smaller audience of people who grow to want to hear what I have to say, not for page views, ad clicks, or to break news. It’s better for me to write a few more impactful articles than try to write four times a day, even if I had time and energy for that. You need to look rationally at what you can produce, and what you are likely to be able to produce in future, and keep the quality and impact of your content top of mind, as well as things like traffic and search results. If you can post four top-quality articles per day and keep that consistency, then go for it. I know I tried before and nearly burned out. IMM internet marketing magazine february 2014 25
  26. 26. > OPTIMIZATION WHY A TRANSITION FROM OPTIMIZING FOR SEARCH ENGINES TO OPTIMIZING FOR CUSTOMERS IS ESSENTIAL By Lee Odden J udging by the daily new business inquiries we get every day, there’s a groundswell of companies that have become frustrated at the lack of cause and effect data from their SEO programs. Sure, there are workarounds for things like “not provided” keywords, but the lack of information and uncertainty about what Google will take away next is causing many marketers 26 internet marketing magazine february 2014 to diversify into other owned, earned and organic areas: social media, content marketing, online public relations, and certainly into online advertising. At the same time, as SEO practitioners have matured as marketers, the shift from keywords as the driver for content optimization and creation have been displaced by a focus on answering customer questions along the sales cycle.
  27. 27. > OPTIMIZATION Ironically, this emphasis on solving for the customer and architecting content according to satisfying customer information is in alignment with Google’s Hummingbird update – i.e. the move away from “keyword SEO” to creating useful, customer-centric content that answers their questions is actually good for SEO. management wants tactics to affect certain big picture measurables like “rankings and traffic” that are not necessarily tied to other important metrics like increased orders, sales, revenue, customers added, sales cycle duration, and cost of marketing/sale. It’s the old KPIs vs. business outcomes thing. But so many marketers have relied upon and benefitted from traditional SEO tactics and reporting, that they have a hard time letting go. Their internal marketing performance reporting is often keyword driven and a ridiculous number of companies cannot answer the question: “What is the profile of the target customer you are optimizing for?”. What does the sales cycle look like? What topics are important during the customer journey? So how can you move from that all-SEO program and mindset to a customer focused online marketing program? How can you put SEO in it’s place within the marketing mix without discrediting yourself and past advice? What’s the go forward and how can you continue to provide value with roots in SEO but with an emphasis on customer targeting across the sales cycle? Think about that. There are numerous companies that have top tier writers creating keyword optimized content with no clear identification of who the content is for, or what the specific intended outcome is. Or where one content object fits with other content and how they are connected to the customer experience. What legacy SEO focused marketers often care about is rankings, organic referred traffic, and page views with trend lines that go up and to the right. There’s not a lot of focus on customer experience, customer journey or differentiation amongst segments. Even if marketers were convinced that keyword lists and ranking reports are no longer the primary way (yet still useful in some ways) to manage a website marketing program, they aren’t set up to move to something else other than various online advertising options. I’m sure more than a few brand marketers reading this can relate to situations where Fundamentally, it comes down to cracking the nut that is your target customer and how solving information problems for them in a way that leads to achieving business goals – leads, revenue, profitability, referrals, lower marketing costs, retention and advocacy. Optimize covers this in depth. That’s not a book pitch, it’s the truth. Every week I know that companies are contacting their SEOs and saying, “Hey, we love the work you’re doing, but we’re shifting our focus. What else can you do for us?” When that happens, you’re up to bat, what are you going to do? internet marketing magazine february 2014 27
  28. 28. > OPTIMIZATION Are you going to start rambling on about algorithm changes? Or maybe say that social media is the new SEO? Better yet, talk about how content marketing is the new SEO! Content Marketing is NOT the “new SEO” My challenge to companies still focused on keyword vs. customer driven online marketing is to take a step back and maintain perspective on where SEO fits in the marketing mix. Content is the reason search engines were created, so broaden your perspective and think about answering the why, for who and what outcomes are expected with content. Understand who the target audience is and why they buy. See the relevant topics and stories you could tell in your content and let that drive creation, optimization, amplification and engagement. approach has helped keep SEO in perspective. After all, SEO is just marketing. The last thing you need, is to pay a SEO consultant for advice only to later find out the effect of that advice (quantity, not quality content, overly aggressive links) is now working against you. Next you’ll be asked to pay to undo what you paid to have implemented in the first place. Whether that comes as a result of SEO hucksterism or brand greed, it’s expensive and potentially deadly. And it’s completely avoidable. Not all SEO consultants put their clients at risk like this. Not by a long shot. The reason to transition from keywords to customer optimization isn’t just to avoid risky SEO tactics. The drive to make the transition should be a clear picture of how your company can better serve your customers. Start speaking customer and focus on content that helps your brand become the best answer for customers, where ever they may be: search, social, email, publications, mobile. More important than getting into the weeds of how to make the transition is acknowledging that the change needs to be made. Then having the confidence that what you evolve to is something that actually works – for customers, for your business and especially for you in your role as an agency or a brand marketer. Some marketers will say, “We don’t have people who know how to do that.”. The good news is that agencies like ours that integrate multiple marketing disciplines have been helping companies with these discussions and transitions for years. You may not know this, but our company roots are an integration of public relations, direct marketing and SEO – since 2001. That long standing “SEO plus” 28 internet marketing magazine february 2014 Has your company made a transition from old school SEO tactics to a more customer focused, integrated marketing approach? Do you ever feel stuck with SEO focused reporting and want something more strategic? IMM * This article is originally published on TopRank Blog
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  30. 30. > SEO HOW TO ANIMAL-PROOF YOUR WEBSITE By Jon Henshaw I remember when Google algorithm updates were named Bourbon, Vince and Florida. However, since 2011 we’ve been on an animal roll. While I would have picked more ferocious animals – like mosquito, hippo and Brazilian wandering spider – instead we’ve been subjected to the cuddly-looking panda, cute penguin and sweet hummingbird. But as any seasoned SEO knows, these are actually the most foul, cruel and bad-tempered animals you ever set eyes on. With a vicious streak a mile wide, they’re killers! OK, maybe they’re not that bad – unless, of course, you’ve been doing risky and sloppy SEO. In this post, I’m going to show you how to animal-proof your websites against each of these beasts. The good news is that it’s a lot simpler than you thought, and you can do most of these things directly in Raven. The Panda update mainly affects site content – things like low quality content, duplicate content, and content spam. The three best tactics to Panda-proof your site are: 30 internet marketing magazine february 2014 • Find duplicate content: Canonicalize duplicate content or remove it from your site. You can find duplicate content using the Site Auditor. • Find low traffic content: Review the traffic for your landing pages and find content that isn’t performing well. Then – on an individual basis – decide if the content should be removed, redirected to better content, rewritten or noindexed. This information is available in Raven’s Google Analytics tool. • Find irrelevant content: If you’ve published content that’s irrelevant to your site and target audience, consider removing it. (A content audit can help you find it). Exceptions include necessary pages, like privacy policy pages. Raven’s Blog Manager can make this process go quickly. Unlike Panda, the Penguin update focuses on link quality. That includes the type of sites that link to you and how the links are implemented (anchor text, etc…). There are several things you can do to combat Penguin-related issues. • Research backlinks: Perform backlink research on your site and look for low
  31. 31. > quality sites. You can do this in Raven using Research Central. • Find toxic links: If the site has used poor link building practices in the past and/ or is the victim of negative SEO practices, consider using a service like LinkRisk to find toxic links. • Disavow links: Most sites won’t ever need to use Google’s Disavow Tool. However, if you have a link from a site that fits the toxic link description above, you may want to submit low quality links to Google just to be safe. • Diversify your anchor text: With the exception of your brand, it’s important to keep the anchor text of your backlinks diversified. Using a tool like Raven’s Link Manager, find links to pages that may benefit from more diverse anchor text. SEO question, instead of many answers to a generalized question. • Use semantic diversity: Instead of focusing on one keyword phrase, use synonyms and related concepts (i.e., use a thesaurus). This will help Google better understand your content and thus increase the chances of it being presented in the SERPs. • Build smart, relevant links: This isn’t necessarily specific to Hummingbird, but the reasons for doing it are related. Hummingbird is about semantic comprehension of diverse, but related entities. The sites that link to your pages can help amplify the meaning and authority of your content. So be diverse and strategic in your link building efforts. Additional tips – not exclusive to Penguin, but related – include seeking out fewer links of higher quality, versus more links of lower quality, and making sure you leverage social media with highly linkable content. The Hummingbird update is about speed and comprehension. It’s about Google having a better understanding of what searchers’ intentions are, regardless of whether they use the ideal words in their query. There are several ways to approach Hummingbird as an SEO, which include: • Write focused content: Write for longtail search and consider related entities. For example, write very specific content that comprehensively addresses a single Use these techniques – along with a continued focus on site speed, engagement, structured data and algorithm signals – to survive whatever wild animals of Google bring. IMM internet marketing magazine february 2014 31
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  33. 33. > EMAIL MARKETING HOW TO WIN THE BATTLE OF THE INBOX By Scott Dudley Let me explain... There are three types of emails which amateur marketers send out to their list. • Straight sales pitches (some may call this spam) • Straight content which is presented in a text book like fashion • Emails about themselves which don’t interest the reader My personal opinion about the above is... “Email is dead.” “It’s just too competitive in the inbox these days.” “Email open rates have plummeted over the last few years.” These are the common opinions about email marketing in 2014. And in a way... they’re right. But let me clarify. They’re only right if the marketer is sending out dull, dry, bland emails. The fact is most marketers have no idea how to do email marketing the right way. You can’t expect high response rates if you’re not engaging your subscribers. The last thing people want in their inbox is blunt sales pitches. It’s a bit like when someone knocks on your door, and tries to sell you alarm equipment. Straight sales pitches simply don’t work. Especially if you hammer your list with them. As for content emails... Very few people look forward to receiving dry content in their inbox. They can easily go to Google.com and find a huge selection of information on any topic. Or they can buy magazines such as this one to read. There is an abundance of information out there. Don’t get me wrong - content has it’s place, but it’s not in the inbox. And as for the emails which discuss the life of the sender, not much more needs to be said. Unless it’s a celebrity or someone who leads an exciting lifestyle, most people couldn’t care less. internet marketing magazine february 2014 33
  34. 34. > EMAIL MARKETING These are the sorts of emails which get promptly deleted, ignored or marked as spam. And there is zero engagement. The idea is to weave the information and entertainment elements together. And to then point them in the direction of a solution. Which is obviously your product or service. And it’s usually done at the end of the email with a soft call to action. Some advice for those selling information products... It’s crucial not to give away important secrets which are contained in your product. In this case, you tell them what to do in your emails. But you don’t tell them how to do it. The “how to” is covered in your product. And to get this information they need to buy it. So it’s no wonder some marketers struggle to get their emails opened if they are sending out garbage. Bottom line is... you have to send out emails which are worth reading. Otherwise it’s just a waste of time. But if you’re selling physical goods (or services), you don’t need to hold back. The more information you provide them, the more you demonstrate that you’re the expert in your field. But, you make sure you do it a fun, interesting way. Put it this way... Your subscribers should be better off in some way after reading your email, than they were beforehand. What You Should Be Sending Your Subscribers Instead In a nutshell, you need to make your emails fun to read. It’s not education that people want in their inboxes. What they’re really craving is entertainment and solutions to their problems. And if you mix the two of these together you get what is called.. INFOTAINMENT 34 internet marketing magazine february 2014 Which leads me to explaining how you should go about writing your emails. In this article I’m going to talk about the best two methods to get your subscribers excited about receiving your emails.
  35. 35. > The Story Email The first type of email that works (if done properly) is the story email. If you want to illustrate a point which can be tied into your product somehow, you’re much better of explaining it through a story than plain facts. Dry facts which are put together into content are boring more often than not. And when sent in an email they’re very rarely read. EMAIL MARKETING You haven’t bored them. And you haven’t hard pitched them either. More than likely they haven’t even realised you’re trying to sell them something. You could call it selling without selling. And stories can be based from anything. Some examples being: • Your own personal life (or someone you know) • Movies, novels and TV shows • Businesses or entrepreneurs • Other famous people • Events from history and so on... Any of these examples can work as long as: • they’re of interest to the reader • and the moral of the story can be tied into your product somehow Think about it... So the formula for a story email goes something like this: 1. STORY 2. MORAL OF STORY 3. CALL TO ACTION Fiction books are generally a lot more popular than non-fiction books. And for good reason. The Problem Email But when framed as a story instead, your email takes on a completely different dimension. Good stories have an effect on the reader. Images, feelings and emotion flash through their mind. They can temporarily escape their own world and visualize themselves as being a part of the story. And when you can tie the moral of the story into your product, the reader is naturally a lot more inclined to click on your call to action. This type of email is a no-brainer to open if the reader is frustrated with a problem (or pain) they’re experiencing. It’s human nature to want to read about a persistent problem that won’t go away. Most people can’t get enough of reading about their pain. They’re obsessed with it. internet marketing magazine february 2014 35
  36. 36. > EMAIL MARKETING And if you have a product which solves their problem, it should be easy to write emails talking about the problem. To finish off this email you include the call to action to your product as the perfect solution to their misery. Step into your prospects shoes and see things from their point of view. So the formula for this email would be: 1. PROBLEM 2. AGITATION 3. SOLUTION (CALL TO ACTION) Once you have covered the problem in detail, you then agitate the problem. Here you want to reinforce just how painful it is, and highlight the need for a solution. You might want to talk about what will happen if they don’t fix this problem. If the consequences of not taking action are dire, there shouldn’t be too much resistance. This is basically intensifying the desire for a solution. 36 internet marketing magazine february 2014 These are not the only ways to engage your email subscribers, but in my opinion, they are the most effective. And to stand out, you don’t want to be doing what the masses are doing. You want to be in a position where your emails are the first to be opened. Your subscribers will actually be looking forward to hearing from you. Entertainment is the key. People crave entertainment. An escape from reality. That’s why sports, movies and music are so popular. And why the performers are paid so much. Give it a try yourself. And you should see a far better response rate. The point is... you want to be sending emails which appeal to the needs and desires of your target market. There is huge demand for entertainment. And if you can incorporate it into your email marketing, there’s a good chance you’ll make a lot more sales. IMM
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