November 27, 2014

The Importance of Testing Your Landing Page (Infographic)

 

Testing Your Landing Page

It’s not enough to simply draw visitors to your landing page. You want it to be usable, as inviting as possible and you want to make sure it’s accomplishing the goals you’ve set out for it. The only way to do that is by testing your landing page.  Here’s why  . . . and a little about – how:

 

Beat Writer’s Block: Get Back to Your Writing Roots by Returning to Basics

Writer's BlockGuest Post by Samantha Stainsburry

Writing is a task that can be just as much fun as reading a book or discovering new information in the news. Many professional writers seem to have the easiest job in the world, but once they hit that brick wall of writer’s block, it can also become one of the most frustrating jobs in the world. If you are suffering from writer’s block, here are some techniques that may help you break through the wall and reach your creativity on the other side.

Find a New Creative Outlet

Being creative with words is a great thing, but after awhile it can limit your mindset to creative ideas that can only be expressed in writing. Instead of focusing only on the written word, find another creative outlet for some of your ideas. This can be through painting, sketching, completing crafts or making videos. Once your creativity is flowing again, you’ll find it easier to jump back into writing.

Get Your Ideas Down

If your writer’s block is based on a specific project, then writing something else could be the answer. You don’t have to spend a long time fleshing out your ideas, but if you just take one of your stylish leather notebooks or your tablet to a public place and just start writing down anything that strikes your fancy, you are clearing room in your mind to refocus on your current project. Save your words, phrases and ideas from this exercise to use as inspiration at a later date.  For some lovely leather notebooks that can be used, check out RusticoLeather.com.

Try Writing Exercises

These exercises are usually the first suggestions to beat writer’s block, but some writers tend to resist them. Writing exercises range from pre-written story prompts to scheduled time for free writing. It doesn’t matter what you choose, as long as you are writing. You can even choose to creatively interpret your otherwise mundane day for your journal, as long as you keep your writing muscles moving.

Change Your Schedule

If you have been written everyday at 3PM for the past five years, a change in your schedule might help you find a new stream of creativity for your writing. Although a change in schedule may seem minimal, writing early in the morning or late at night puts your brain in a different space, which may be more open to wacky ideas or directions you never thought you would otherwise take your characters. It can be an eye-opener to many who are strapped to a rigid writing schedule.

Writer’s block can be hard to overcome, but trying a few of these suggestions can help you get over the wall and back into the zone again.

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Samantha Stainsburry is a freelance blogger from Charlottesville, VA.  In her free time she enjoys hiking, reading, and finding new music among other things.

Top Myths of Content Marketing To Bust Right Now

content marketingGuest Post by Alex Strike

There is so much talk about content marketing this year. I do not know the reason, but some bloggers even call this phenomenon a totally new way to market. It is not true actually because, as many of us remember, content always was the key piece of business online. Anyway, it is a kind of mainstream to talk about content marketing today and discuss all its positive and negative sides.

Many articles and blog posts can be found on this topic, and most of them tell the same things to all of us. It often happens that different articles on content marketing provide some controversial and even conflicting information.  From this, many myths have developed. So, where is the truth? What information on content marketing can we trust, and what facts or tips can simply be called trash? It is high time to debunk some myths of content marketing, friends.

 

Myth #1: Long posts never work All bloggers believe that web visitors do not like reading long articles, as they have no time for it. 300-800 words are always enough. Moreover, a reader scan an article first in order to understand whether he wants to continue reading this info or not; that is why we should always divide our posts into short paragraphs, use subheadings, lists, pictures, etc. So, it may seem that the shorter a post is – the better. Nope. Long content may work as well! Top 10 posts of this year all have in between 1000-1500 words, and all are based on some researches that are difficult to find. So, as you can see, even longer posts can bring you good content marketing results.

 

Myth #2: More content is always better One more question that bothers all bloggers is frequency of posting. It is believed that the more often you post new articles to your blog – the better results it will yield. So, you should try to post one article a day at least, or 2-3 times a week minimum. The truth is that quantity does not mean quality. If you do not have anything to tell your readers, there is no need to force yourself to write merely because someone once said it would work on your blog’s popularity. There are many authoritative blogs on the Internet that update their content once a week, but this content is really interesting and useful for its readers. Think of quality first of all.

 

Myth #3 All content should be remarkable All articles about content marketing tell you to think serious about your blog’s content and post only remarkable information. But can you say what remarkable content looks like actually? Every piece is not going to be remarkable.  Take a look at some content from your favorite blogs. Chances are, not every, single blog post will hit home for you.

Therefore aspire to make your content high quality and one or more of the following: unique, informative, inspirational, witty, funny or original.  It’s impossible to write only excellent articles: some of them will be perfect; other ones – just “fine”.

Be yourself, write naturally, and your reader will feel this for sure. You may hear and read many different facts about content marketing. All those tips and tricks given by “experts” sound really weird sometimes, which is why you need to filter them yourself and throw out everything that does not make sense to you. Turn your logic on, and test all options yourself. Some of them are really useful, but not all of them will work for your particular blog.

 

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Submitted by Copywriter Alex Strike, a blogger of Essay-All-Stars.Com.

Using Hype in Ad and Marketing Copy Alienates Customers: Use these Alternative Copywriting Techniques (Infographic)

Alternative Copywriting Techniques

Compliments of Stuart Miles/Freedigitalphotos.net

By now, you know, if I can say it short and sweet by sharing a helpful infographic, I will. So, you know how copywriters are always railing against using hype in marketing and ad copy? This infographic provides alternatives for all of you who are tempted to apply that customer-alienating tactic. Yeah, you can promote your company, your brand or your cause without the BS.


The Top 7 No-Hype Copywriting Techniques created by No-Hype Copywriting Telesummit

The Art of the Sales Letter [Infographic]

Writing a Sales Letter

 

These masters of persuasion perfected the art of the sales letter starting in the 19th century with copywriters like Robert Collier and Leo Burnett. Along came such greats as Claude Hopkins, David Ogilvy and Joe Sugarman to perfect the art of the sales letter. Hear what the masters of persuasion had to say about crafting a winning sales letter — apply this wisdom to your landing pages and other offers.

The Art of the Sales Letter

A Few Quick Tips to Make Your Website Mobile Marketing-Friendly

Mobile Marketing (App) -Mobile Phone, Tablet Computer

Image courtesy of Kromkrathog FreeDigitalPhotos.net

 

Consultant Wendy Montes de Oca says web sites designed for display on mobile devices should be fast and user friendly.

Being fast, according to de Oca, means having a site that loads in around 5 seconds or less. Being user friendly means having large buttons, easy search capabilities, and limited scrolling.

Consider having responsive templates that adjust accordingly based on the user’s device, albeit template, desktop, or mobile phone. Offer ready access to company information such as easy-to-find business directions, contact numbers, product and purchasing information.

Even better: add a click-to-call access button to contact a customer service rep to take an order via the phone as well as an option for users to visit a non-mobile site.

 

 

Precision Marketing eNewsletter

This article appears courtesy of Bob Bly’s Direct Response Letter

Hey Copywriters . . . Connect with the Folks Reading Your Copy – – Be Real. Be Personal. Be You.

 

Two Friends Talking

Image courtesy of Aleska D FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Your level of writing success has a lot to do with how your readers react to your copy.  People connect with the product or service because they relate to what you’re saying to them.  They want to feel that your copy is specifically crafted with their interests and needs in mind.  In other words, it should feel personal. Following are three ways to help your readers identify  and connect with your message:

1. Before You Write, Get to Know Yourself First.

When you understand who you are,  your writing is more inclined to genuinely fuse with the product’s message. When you are an unsure writer, it’s harder to trust your own belief in the message you are writing about the product. You can create a stronger and more compelling message if you start with you first, then tackle the project.  It’s easier to bring out the brand when you know yourself. Your confidence comes through your writing making your copy more engaging because your insecurities aren’t getting in the way of the flow of the message.

2. Don’t Be Something You’re Not. Be You.

Many writers make the mistake of trying to be something or someone they admire.  It’s okay if someone’s influence shows through your writing. However, because it’s not your authentic voice, when writers blatantly and repeatedly attempt to mimic the voice of another, it sounds scripted and unnatural.

Every writer has his or her own signature rhythm, traits and mannerisms.  Yes, that includes you.  Find and leverage your own self-expression.  Success is easier to repeat when you already own its source and it’s not borrowed from somebody else. I’ll add that, in the quest to find your own voice, it’s okay to emulate someone you admire when you start out, but don’t try to be them.

3. Speak to Your Readers Through Your Writing

Imagine that your reader is a personal friend of yours and that you are engaged in a real conversation. What would you tell her about the product or service?  Explain its benefits in the same way do when you are trying to convince a reasonably intelligent friend to make a purchase of a particular item. You want the flow of information to feel and sound real.

Know their problem. Empathize with them. What are they likely to be thinking. What are they likely to want or need from this product or service. Find that hook.

I’m sure you have a checklist of your own and you’re ahead of the game if you do.  But, if you don’t, once your copy is written, at the very least, before turning it in, check to see that you’ve got these three keys covered.

Stacey

Here’s A Copywriter’s Quickie: 25 UnSung, But Important Copywriting Tips All Copywriters Can Use

Working Woman Having Tea

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Most copywriters, even newbies, know there are fundamental rules when you sit down to write copy, like – use headlines, include benefits and remember to add a P.S.

 

Below are some other rules (borrowed from that magnanimous message board – Warrior Forum) that veteran copywriters routinely include in their copy:

  1. Any big statements you make must be backed up by proof or credibility.
  2. Include as many (well-written) testimonials and case studies as you can.
  3. Explain why you’re making the offer.
  4. Give the reader multiple chances to take action.
  5. Find out how the target market talks to each other - then use their language.
  6. Address all potential objections.
  7. The goal of the first few lines is ONLY to get the reader to read the next line, then the next, then the next, then the… etc.
  8. Decide on exactly what you want the reader to do and slowly guide them towards it.
  9. Use emotional words as often as you can.
  10. Tell seductive stories throughout the copy.
  11. Get the reader to nod “yes” to your copy, especially at the
    beginning.
  12. Use supporting images, not attention grabbing images (the focus should be on the content, not the images)
  13. Keep sales page narrow and not too wide.
  14. Don’t concentrate on keywords only, and apply them where they BEST fit. Fit the keywords into the copy, not the copy into the keywords.
  15. After it’s all over and done with, ask yourself, “so what?”
  16. Create a buyers environment.
  17. Use good justification techniques, especially if a higher priced item, product or service.
  18. Make the first sentence extremely short.
  19. Anticipate questions in advance and answer them directly.
  20. Create gravity pulling, slippery sales copy that virtually compels the reader to slide right into the direct call to action…
  21. No. Humor does not sell.
  22. Johnson boxes. Use them.
  23. Always give away as many bonuses as you can. People will often buy just for these.
  24. Try using “action elements” like check boxes, fields, and text area’s for the user to take part in the sales letter.
  25. No yellow on white or black on dark grey text. You must have contrast to be able to read text.

So, did you run your copy through this list?  Now, do you still need help?  Then put on your thick skin (‘cause you’re going to need it) and pop on over to warriorforum.com for a critique of your copywriting piece.

Good luck!

Stacey Mathis Copywriting in Association with MarketingProfs Offers Info-packed Content Marketing Crash Course

Making more money in your small business than you did last year is quite possible. The answer is to find a way to dazzle your prospects, wow your customers, and bowl over competitors. The answer dear readers, is content.
Online Marketing Diagram
New York, NY, December 03, 2012 — Stacey Mathis Copywriting is offering small business owners and freelancers a Content Marketing Crash Course whose broadcast kicks off on December 6, 2012. The course is presented by MarketingProfs, one of the Internet’s most respected authorities in marketing. What’s more, several of their high-powered bonus recordings are available the moment you register for the upcoming course.
“Many small business owners and freelancers are grasping at straws, desperately trying to figure out how to improve their revenue. Some, at this point, simply want to find a means to just stay afloat,” says Mathis. “Content, as many of the most successful business owners have learned, is a proven, affordable and practical means for boosting their business income, sending traffic to their websites and foot traffic to their brick and mortar establishments.” MarketingProfs University’s Content Marketing Crash Course is designed to do just that – – help business owners create lead-driving, business-building content.
MarketingProfs University for years has been a lifeline for so many professionals, providing the confidence they need to make the changes their freelance and small businesses require. MPU’s courses are swelling with up-to-the-minute techniques in online classes that are cost-effective and manageable.
“I’d recommend MPU to any B2B marketer. The class experience is easy to manage, well-organized, and supported by responsive ‘support ninjas’ ready to assist.” – Thorsten Strauss, Brussels, Belgium
“The MPU Websites That Work (2011) course was chock-full of excellent information delivered in a very digestible format. The instructors were very knowledgeable and taught their topics with great respect for the diversity of the students. As a non-Web designer, I can’t tell you how much this course has informed my approach to both optimizing our site and building consensus with my team members. This product is top shelf and I would recommend it and MarketingProfs to anyone.” – Nick Fortunatus, Philadelphia, PA
For more information on, or to register for MarketingProfs University’s Content Marketing Crash Course please visit us HERE.
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About Stacey Mathis Stacey Mathis is a copywriter and a freelance copywriting business coach who teaches marketing and copywriting techniques online to freelancers and small business owners. With a BA Degree in Psychology from John Jay College of Criminal Justice, she worked as a Family Law professional serving the domestic relations legal community for over 20 years – a career where she spent a large amount of her time on projects that required legal and business letter writing and editing.

There Really is a Content Marketing Crash Course with More Value and Info than You’ve Ever Dreamed Of

Content Marketing - SEO sign board

Are you sick of saying “This year I’m going to increase my revenue,” but still haven’t figured out a way to do it? Is being in a better financial situation than you were in last year on your list of personal goals?

Making more money in your small business than you did last year is quite possible. The answer is to find a way to dazzle your prospects, wow your customers, and bowl over competitors. The answer dear readers, is content. Content, as you may have heard, truly is king, and MarketingProfs University’s Content Marketing Crash Course will give you a hands-on plan for creating lead-driving, business-building content that connects with customers, again and again. You’ll learn everything from what changes to make in key marketing efforts, like customer engagement, to how to create content that drives sales.

 

Register Now

For each class, you’ll have access to:

• the class lecture (streaming media)

•the slide deck (PDF)

•the audio track (MP3, so you can listen to the lectures on other devices)

•a transcript (PDF)

•and a “cheat sheet” (PDF)

In addition to the above tools, as a Content Marketing Crash Course student, you’ll also receive close to $1,000 in FREE course materials and More!

There aren’t many places where you’ll get practical, information-packed, real-world, proven tactics with expert guidance from a leading and respected marketing authority in a crash course.

The Kickoff class broadcasts December 6, 2012

Register Now

 

 

 

 

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