Archive for content marketing

Why You Need to Use Categories and Tags in Your Blog Posts

What would you do if I told you that taking a few seconds to do something that will improve your search engine optimization, keep visitors on your site longer, increase your page views and decrease your bounce rate, you’d do it, right? I hope so. Taking just a few seconds to use categories and tags in all your blog posts will absolutely help.

Here’s why you need to incorporate categories and tags in your blog posts…

  1. Categories and tags are keywords. Google loves keywords. Especially those that are relevant to the nice fresh content that you’re writing. Those very keywords, you discovered from your research, your target audience is entering into the search box. Additionally, they’re the ones that will help you come up on the first page of Google when someone is looking for information on that topic.
  2. They help keep visitors on your site longer. When used, Categories and Tags appear on all your blog posts. When someone clicks on one of them, all the articles with that topic come up. Furthermore, it piques the curiosity of your visitor. The longer a visitor stays on your site, the higher the chances that they’ll do something, like convert into a lead or make a purchase.
  3. It decreases your bounce rate. The bounce rate is calculated by Google Analytics (you need to have this setup already). It measures how long a visitor stays on your site. If they land on your site and not see what they want, they’ll leave quickly – or bounce out. You don’t want that. Moreover, you want a bounce rate around or lower than 50%. That means if you get 100 visitors a week to your site, 50% of them stick around to read more than one blog post.

Where do I add Categories and Tags?

Categories and tags in WordPressIn a WordPress blog, they are over on the right column about halfway down the page. Choose no more than 3 categories. You can choose as many tags as are relevant to your blog article. Think of the category as the general topic of your post and the tags as the major keywords that you mention in the article.

Below Categories are the Tags. Add as many as pertinent to your post. Don’t over do it. Choosing these comes easier after you’ve done your keyword research. Always add your name and your company name to the tags. If you’re local, add your city. Think of different ways to say the same thing. Once you’ve used tags in more than one post, click on “Choose from the most used tags” and you’ll see a “tag cloud”. The ones with in the larger font are the ones that you use most often. Just click on them to add them. Saves a ton of time!

Another mistake I see people make is leaving “Uncategorized” as a category. This is an easy one-time setup fix.

WordPress Menu - Posts, Categories & TagsOver on the left menu, under Posts, click on Categories. Here you can add all the topics that you plan to blog about in advance. You can always add a category on the fly from the right menu.

WordPress Menu- settingsThen, on the left under Settings, Writing, find “Default Post Category”, and choose one of the most generic topics that describes your blog. This way if you forget to pick a category, it won’t be under “Uncategorized”. “Uncategorized” doesn’t help whatsoever – it definitely isn’t a keyword! If you have blog posts with “Uncategorized”, they’ll be automatically changed to whatever topic you indicate here.

When blogging regularly, at least weekly, and using categories and tags religiously in all your blog posts, you’ll start to see an increase in the number of page views per visit and a decrease in the bounce rate.

Have you been blogging and not using categories and tags?

You can easily add them to past blog posts by going to “All Posts” from the left menu. You’ll see a list of all your posts and columns for both categories and tags. Hover your mouse over the the post title and you’ll see links. Click on “Quick Edit” and you’ll be able to add the relevant categories and tags for that post. Click on “Edit” to open the full editing screen if you need to.

In conclusion, this is just a small part of what it takes to blog effectively. The easy-to-follow tutorials in the Social Savvy Solution Online Training Center will guide you through planning what to write about, how to blog on WordPress, how to get exposure and drive traffic to your website with social media marketing and how to see what’s working and not working each month.

For only $20 a month and you can watch all the videos at your own pace, at whatever time works for you! Cancel at any time, but you’ll see that the valuable update videos produced each month are worth every penny.

With time and practice, you’ll be blogging in less than an hour and managing your social media in 30-minutes a day! Yes, you can!

Your Social Savvy Solution Members OnlyThe expert in anything was once a beginner.

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How Not Blogging Weekly Hurts Your Reputation

The purpose of blogging weekly is to keep Google happy and attract new visitors to your website who will convert to leads or clients.

What does Google want? Google wants fresh, relevant content written for the human reader.

What do your potential customers want? They want answers to their problems, information, advice or to be entertained – and the want it now!

The last thing Google or a potential customer wants to see is that your last blog post was March of 2012. OK, you may not be that bad. But even a month old is too old.

If you’re not blogging? How are people finding you?

First, if you haven’t updated your site in years, it won’t come up on Google search. Over 83% of searchers are on a mobile device. If your site is not mobile-friendly and responsive, you absolutely won’t come up. Basically, the only traffic you’re getting to your site is from someone who clicked on the link on one of the social media networks or they have your business card. Too few, I bet. Or they Googled your business name exactly. Most all business will come up for their name. But if there’s another business with a similar name, and their content is more recent, they’ll come up first. Not good.

Now, lets look at it from the potential customer’s point of view.

Frustrated potential customer who can't find content because you're not bloggingLet’s say it’s an entrepreneur looking for a contractor in a specific city because she’s opening a new business. She goes on LinkedIn and searches for “commercial contractor my city”. She sees that the 2 folks that come up are not in her network. But, they have the links to their respective websites. The searcher clicks on the links and goes to the websites. Contractor 1 has a website that looks dated – old fashioned. She clicks on About Us to read about the company, who are they, how long have they’ve been in business, etc. Then she clicks on Blog. The last article was in 2012, just text, long paragraphs and no pictures or videos. Under Portfolio, there are pictures with no descriptions. You can’t tell where the projects were, how long it took to build, was it under budget?

This happy customer found content that helps in a blog.Over at Contractor 2’s site, there are high-quality graphics with their last 3 projects on the home page. Each are linked to a blog post describing each project in detail. At the bottom are tags and categories with links to other similar blog posts by type of project. The person seeking will look for articles about projects like what she’s planning to build. She thinks, “This company has experience doing projects like the one I’m planning. I’m calling them.”

Also on their site are testimonial videos showcasing recent projects from start to finish with the happy camper client opening the door of their redone place. Yes, like the “reveal” on those home improvement shows. Ah, but before the entrepreneur makes the call, she’s going to check their Facebook page to see if there are any reviews and updates. (The first company didn’t even have a Facebook page. Oh, my!) There she finds 5, 5-star reviews. She’s sold.

Wow! That took maybe an hour. Which is how long it should take you to write a blog post.

Blogging regularly builds trust and credibility. People buy from whom they know and trust.

What should you blog about?

  • Tell Stories – people like to identify with people in stories; use pictures of people like your target audience.
  • Don’t let this happen to you! Hypothetical situations
  • FAQs – anticipate what a potential customer will be asking
  • Industry news – careful with the industry jargon, though. Remember your audience is not the expert. You are. Write for an 11-year-old.
  • Offer advice, useful information
  • Blog about what you know

Get more ideas in the blogging and content marketing class videos as a member of Social Savvy Solution! For just $20, you can watch as many videos as you want. Cancel at any time. But, I’ll be sharing updated videos each month.

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Do You Want to go Viral? Tell Stories that Provoke Emotions

Here’s an excellent example of a viral video for a brand who actually rejected it. It’s what’s called “user-generated content”. A fan of a product or service creates a video, on their own, without prompting by the brand. But this is not about the brand, but about the power of telling stories that provoke emotions.

About the video:

German student, Eugen Merher, created this video in honor of a relative of his. He sent the video to Adidas, but it was rejected. So, he uploaded it to YouTube. As of this posting, it’s had over 12 million views!

I’ll let the video speak for itself – the power of telling stories…..

Don’t you just want to stand up a applaud?

Now, you’re probably thinking, “I can’t produce a video like this!” Well, the brand didn’t produce it. A fan/user did. However, you can still tell stories without going to the lengths of a full video production.

You have satisfied customers, don’t you? Tell their stories. You don’t have to use their names. Even if you’re just starting out, use fictional or hypothetical situations. No one needs to know that it’s not true. Or even a compilation of several clients.

Remember, not every video is going to go viral. Going viral is a fluke. Here’s another one of my articles on creating viral content.

Testimonial videos also carry a lot of weight. People want to relate with people.

Free Download: Define Your Target Market WorkbookTo be able to generate emotions of your target audience, you first need to really get to know them. Here’s a free Define Your Target Market Workbook that will help you get started.

Note: top photo is a YouTube Screenshot.

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What You Need to Know about Writing Enticing Headlines to Attract More Viewers [Infographic]

You write what you think is a great blog article and share it on the social networks. However, when you check your stats a few days later, you see that only a 3 people clicked through to read it. What happened? Or what didn’t happen? It was probably your headline. Writing catchy headlines social media users will want to click on to read more is a skill anyone can develop with some free tools and the tips in this infographic.

One tool I use for both blog post headlines and email subject lines is Co-Schedule’s Headline Analyzer. You want to get a 65 or higher. Anything in the green — above 70 — is ideal. Now, you can drive yourself crazy trying to get in the green. Don’t. You can’t start each and every blog post with “What You Need to Know…”. (I use it often, but not every single one.)

This infographic from Squirrly, lists the Anatomy of Creative Headlines

What You Need to Know about Writing Enticing Headlines to Drive More Traffic

If you don’t feel you have the creativity to write eye-catching headlines, we can help!

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Top 10 Best Marketing and Social Media News of the Week – 2-3-17

The social media networks are constantly changing and adding new features. It’s up to you to keep up with all these changes to be able to more effectively market your business. Your Social Savvy Solution Members Only club will help you do that without being overwhelmed.

Those of you who purchased either the Boot Camp/Master Class, will get the first 3 months free. Those of you who purchased the Startup Pack will get 2 months free. Watch for emails. Those of you who belong to SCORE, Local First Arizona, the Southwest Veterans Chamber of Commerce or another group and you can still use the coupon code and get 10% the monthly membership dues.

Here are this week’s 10 Best Marketing and Social Media News

  1. How to Stop Overthinking Your Content and Start Writing What Your Customers LoveDon’t Overthink It! That’s something I tell everyone who takes my classes. I had a client once who obsessed on getting the SEO to go from yellow to green and she called me in a panic. It doesn’t have to be perfect. It just has to be good content that your target market will want to read and possibly entice them to buy.
  2. What Should You Do if Someone Attacks You Online? – Unfortunately there are evil, nasty people out there who have nothing better to do in life than to be a pest and make our lives miserable. They are called trolls. Here’s some good advice on how to deal with them. Don’t feed the trolls!
  3. What if Super Bowl commercials were like digital ads? – This week’s “best news” would be incomplete without posting a marketing blog related to the Super Bowl.
  4. This might be Kellyanne Conway’s most ‘alternative fact’ yet – I check what’s trending on Twitter every morning. When I saw “Bowling Green Massacre” trending. I clicked on it thinking it was another crisis or mass shooting only to find that it was Kellyanne Conway who misspoke in an interview. She was trending #1 on Twitter for some time. This is a lesson in getting your facts straight and the power of Twitter to make or break someone’s credibility.
  5. Turning Your Social Media Connections into Clients – I get asked this question a lot. Here are some nice tips on how to do it without alienating anyone.
  6. Do You Know What it Feels Like to Get Hacked? – I do. My site was hacked twice in 2014. Worse that the trolls, hackers are evil and will hack a website just because they can. Some hack to steal email addresses, some for financial gain. In this day and age, if you don’t have anti-hacking insurance on your site like (ad link) Sucuri, you risk having to rebuild everything from scratch.
  7. Facebook’s Testing Out a New Tool to Help You Connect with Like-Minded Users – Oh, boy, is Facebook getting into the dating business?
  8. Online Content: Is Longer Really Better? – This is another challenge: how long should a blog post be?
  9. The 4 Ways to Keep Facebook Group Members Engaged – I’m considering a Facebook Group for the Members Only Club. No selling allowed. It will be to exchange ideas and offer suggestions.
  10. Why There’s No Perfect Time to Post on Facebook – So many “experts” dig through tons of data to come up with the best time to post on social media. It all depends on your business and your audience. The best way to find the best time YOU to post is to look at your analytics and insights once a month. The Analytics class (that’s already there) and the tools class (that will be available in the Members Only Club) will guide you on how to do this.

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What You Need to do to Jump-Start a Business Slump

Is your business slow? Has the phone stopped ringing? If you’re in a business slump, there are a few things you can do to jump-start it and attract new customers. Every business has it’s good times and bad times; feast or famine; flood or drought.

First, take a step back. To what can you attribute the slow-down?

  • The economy, the election, national news, a weather event? You can’t do much about those except wait. This is where that rainy-day fund comes in.
  • You’ve been relying on old-fashioned tactics like cold calling, telemarketing, Yellow Pages, etc.
  • Have you been avoiding online marketing like social media or content marketing because you find it overwhelming and confusing?
  • You haven’t updated your website since…. wait! You’ve never updated your website since it was created years ago.
  • If you have an updated website, you haven’t written a blog post in over a month… or is it over a year? Or does your site even have a blog?

Second, do you really understand your target market?

You need to clearly define and get to know your target market(s)….

  • What are their pain points (problems) that you, your product or service can alleviate?
  • Do you need to educate your target as to the benefits of using your product or service?
  • Do you know what your target market is going to enter in to the Google search box when they have the problem that you can solve?

What You Need to do to Jump-start a Business SlumpThird, is your online presence functioning as it should?

  • Are potential clients finding you? Where do you come up in Google search when someone searches for what it is that you do? Who does comes up on the first page? What are they doing that you’re not?
  • What are they doing when they land on your site? Do you have a call-to-action where you can capture their email address in exchange for an ebook or other giveaway?
  • Are you sending them a monthly newsletter to keep your name “top-of-mind”? Are you following up with marketing emails after they download the freebie?
  • Are your social media network profiles setup correctly and are they painting a positive image of you and your business?
  • Are you creating fresh content — blog posts, videos, graphics or podcasts — at least 3 times a week? Then are you sharing them on the social networks?
  • Are you actively engaging with potential clients and referral sources on the social media networks? Is your social media following growing steadily?
  • Do you have a strategic marketing plan to reach your target with today’s media?

“If you’re not adding new followers on social media, you’re not growing.” ~Mark Cuban

These are tough questions that need to be asked. Moreover, you need to come up with the right answers. If you have more “nos” or “I don’t knows” as answers, then you need to make some changes.

What You Need to do to Jump-Start Your Business

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Top 5 Best marketing and Social Media News of the Week 1-27-17

Only 5 social media news stories this week! That’s not to say that there is a ton of news out there, but I’ve been swamped with new projects.

  1. Facebook News Feed Algorithm: Percent of a Video Watched By Users Given Weight – If someone watches only the first 10 seconds of a video, what good is it? You have to capture the viewers’ attention in the first 5 seconds. Now more than ever. Moreover, you have to plan out all your videos.
  2. 3 Changes Coming to Facebook Trending Stories – What’s trending is important because sometimes you can ride on a trend’s coattails and gain exposure.
  3. MailChimp moves toward becoming a marketing platform with Facebook ads feature – Some of you regulars know that I use MailChimp (affiliate link) for my email program and automation. Now, they’ve added Facebook Ads to their service. Very cool.
  4. How to Prepare for Voice Search – “OK, Google…” “Siri, where’s the closest bakery?” “Alexa, how do you unclog a garbage disposal?” No matter your business, you want to be found when someone searches for what you have to offer.
  5. How to Write Emotional Headlines That Get More Shares – How enticing are your blog post headlines? They have to be appealing enough that when someone sees it, they click on it. Then the content needs to deliver on the headline. If it’s good, you have more of a chance your visitor will become a lead and that they’ll share it with their friends. Oh, don’t forget to have share buttons on your site.

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Top 10 Best Social Media News for the Week of Jan. 6

So how’s the first week of 2017 been treating you? I’m pleased to announce that I’ll be assisting 2 new start-up businesses do market and keyword, research, strategic and tactical planning, setting up their social media platforms and building their following. You’ll hear more about them down the line as I record myself doing a lot of the work so you can learn how to do it yourselves! And that’s what this is all about!

Empowering You to Become Social Savvy!

Here again are this week’s Must-Read, Social Media News You Can Use!

      1. Marketing automation for the little guy is helping to power the new economy – Marketing automation has become very affordable. I use MailChimp (ad link) and it works like a charm for me. The marketing automation feature is only $30 a month. It’s pretty basic and for those of you starting out and trying to grow your email list, you can’t beat the price! However, you have to have an enticing offer so that a visitor will give you their email address. That’s a conversion.

        Related: 3 Elements of an Effective Website that Produces Results


      2. 6 Tactics for Turning Your Website into a Lead Generating Machine – This one goes with the one above. Isn’t that the goal of your website to generate good, quality leads?
      3. Mixed Signals on Social Commerce – I wrote about this in my 2017 outlook for social media piece. 1 in 5 Internet users have actually bought something directly from social media. That’s impulse buying!
      4. 9 Ways to Sell on Social Media – Back when social media began, we were told not to “sell” on social. Social media was supposed to drive traffic to the website and that’s where they convert. Conversely, the social media networks are now making it easier to sell on social.
        Make 2017 Your Best Year Ever!
      5. Top LinkedIn Demographics That Matter to Social Media Marketers – Many B2C marketers ignore LinkedIn. Nonetheless, according to the demographics, LinkedIn users have buying power.
      6. Will StumbleUpon Help in Improving the Website Traffic – Some of you may not have even heard of StumbledUpon, but it is a free tool to help with search engine ranking.
      7. Does Content Actually Bring in Customers? – I know some of you are still not convinced that blogging and producing useful content for your target market(s) actually works. Maybe seeing it on Entrepreneur Magazine will persuade you to take it seriously.
        Blogger and copywriter service
      8. Here’s the First Periscope Live 360° Video Taken Underwater – I wrote about 360° video in the 2017 Content Marketing outlook piece. Here’s another cool example. What you can do with this is only limited by your creativity.
      9. 21 Tips on Running a Great Social Media Contest – Contests are a great way to get exposure, grow a following and drive traffic to your website.
      10. Consumer Trust Is Evolving in the Digital Age – People buy from whom they know and trust. Embracing this fact is crucial to marketing success. Interesting data on generational breakdowns regarding the sources they trust. Furthermore, understanding how people in different age brackets use online media is important.
        What You Need to Know About Social Media and Website Analytics

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Top 12 Blogging Mistakes You Need to Fix in 2017

Blogging is a crucial part of online marketing in today’s digital world. Even if you’re blogging regularly, at least a few times a month, you may not be getting the results you want or expected. Moreover, it’s challenging to find the time to write an article that’s at least 300 words.

Blogging mistakes: take the time to do it right the first time. When I’m asked to do a free analysis, I usually find the same mistakes in many people’s blog sites. First, let me tell you that you’re in a big boat with lots of folks who just don’t know what they don’t know.

However, ignorance is no longer an excuse.

Here are the Top 12 Blogging Mistakes and Some Simple Fixes.

      1. Using the free WordPress or other free, third-party blogging platform. On any other platform, whether a free blogging site or social media, you’re just borrowing the space there. You don’t own it. To boot, you have to follow their rules and they can change them at any time AND use your content as they wish. I recommend having your own WordPress website.
      2. Using industry jargon. You’re the expert, your reader is not. Write for an 11-year-old. Use the Flesch Reading Score. The free WordPress plugin, SEO by Yoast, will test your post for you.
      3. Not creating fresh, relevant content regularly. To be effective and grow a following or build an email list, you should blog 2-3 times a week. And, once you’ve built an audience, you can get away with blogging weekly but, no less than that.

        Related Content Hand Picked for You: Blogging 3x a Week Increases Website Traffic – Here’s Proof


      4. Not writing for the human reader. Write for your target market with the search engine and keywords in mind. Use a thesaurus. Don’t overuse your keywords.
      5. Forgetting to proofread before publishing. Check spelling and grammar. It is your online reputation! Preview the post, then read it aloud to yourself.
      6. Writing long paragraphs. Break up your content with bullet points, lists and H2 and H3 sub-headings.Blogger and copywriter service
      7. Not sharing your content on social media. This is the main way to publicize your blog posts. Furthermore, it drives people to your site. Besides that, it helps with SEO. Google loves those relevant backlinks.
      8. No credible internal and external links. Add internal links to related content on your site and external links to related, relevant content on someone else’s site. The keyword here is “relevant”.
      9. Trying to be cute with your headline. Your headline should entice people to click on the link to get them to your website. Yet, creating “clickbait” is a no-no. Use this free Headline Analyzer to help you create catchy headlines. Write a good headline then deliver on the content.Make 2017 Your Best Year Ever!
      10. Not adding the title of the post or keywords to image “alt text” descriptions. If someone pins your picture on Pinterest, this is the description that comes up. Don’t make the user have to add their own description. On top of that, doing this also helps with SEO. The search engine doesn’t see the picture, it sees the file name and the “alt text” description. Also, don’t leave the file name with the original file number from a camera. Call it what it is.
      11. Leaving default widgets like “archives”. (Widgets are the boxes you see in the sidebar with calls-to-action). No one is going to look for what your wrote on a specific day. They’re looking for topics or categories. If anything, put a widget with a drop-down menu of your categories. Look for mine in the sidebar.
      12. Not having a “tag cloud” with the tags (keywords) that are relevant to your article. This is another way to keep people longer on your site. Additionally, keywords are what the search engine sees. Look over to the right sidebar and you’ll see mine. >>>>>

In conclusion, learning how to properly and effectively blog on your website can only benefit you.

Tip: Stop thinking of blogging as a chore. Think of it as a way to talk to your target market; to educate your potential customers; and to provide value to their lives.

Think these are a lot? Check out all the other mistakes that I see people making online with their marketing. Here’s a free ebook.

Are You Making These Social Media Mistakes?

Stop making excuses about your blogging mistakes! Related articles

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Your 2017 Success Blueprint – 10 Content Marketing Truths You Need to Know

To have good SEO, you need to have good content. Content Marketing is a crucial a part of your marketing plan as are SEO and Social Media.

Here’s what you need to know and do regarding Content Marketing in 2017:

1. Video – Hotter than Ever!Video marketing is still hot!

Good content doesn’t only need to be written. In 2016 we saw Facebook Live Streaming Video take off and Facebook also admitted that Native Videos (videos uploaded directly into Facebook) get more exposure than plain posts.

To give videos an extra lift, embed them into your blog posts. The text of your blog post can be your video’s transcript, like I do with my Q&A posts.

“I think video is a megatrend, almost as big as mobile.” ~Mark Zuckerburg

What You Need to Do: Figure out how you can incorporate video into your marketing mix.

  • You don’t have do one every day. Once a month or even a couple of times a month.
  • Use your smartphone to create short how-to videos
  • Get on Facebook and do a live video from anywhere — as long as you have wifi!
  • Do a voice-over recordings of PowerPoint presentations
  • Determine which format works for you — in ease of creation and amount of views they get
  • Try Twitter live videos
  • Coming soon – Instagram live videos
  • Video Converts

In fact, when video is prominently featured on a landing page, conversion rates can go up by a whopping 80%. ~ Convince and Convert

2. Unique, High-Quality Content will be Key

Focus on quality over quantityAbsolutely – Quality over Quantity! Don’t forgo quality in order to get more content out there.

  • No fuzzy graphics — there is no excuse! You can create high-quality pictures with free online, easy-to-use graphics programs like Canva. Download free, license free, online pictures and graphics from sites that I list in this blog post. And don’t steal!
  • Proofread before you publish or post — read your blog post aloud to yourself. Even your social media posts!
  • Preview your blog posts before publishing — Do the graphics look good? Does the eye of reader make a natural progression down the page to your Call-to-Action?

What about unique?

“Most Americans are exposed to 4,000 to 10,000 advertising messages a day!” ~ Convince and Convert

What makes what you have to say or show unique? What makes you different? How is your content different from what your competition shares?

What You Need to Do: Plan out what content you’re going to create.

3. Reshare Your Content on Social Media

Resharing content can increase engagement by over 600%!

Social Media Terms Glossary & Online Marketnig Lingo Guide Free ebookSo you publish your blog post at 9 am and share it on all your social media networks at the time. Someone that logs on at 3 pm or in the evening probably won’t see it unless they have you in a Twitter list or Google+ circle; or have your posts showing first (a Facebook feature). You can manually schedule it to republish on your social networks using tools like HootSuite (ad link), Buffer or TweetDeck.

Another way to give your content extra exposure and traction is to publish it on LinkedIn’s Pulse. At the end of the post, add the line, “This post originally appeared on______” with a link to the original article on your blog. Your site still maintains the authority because there is where the post originated. Yet, on LinkedIn, you validate your expertise by showcasing what you know and how you can help people.

There’s a plugin I use called Revive Old Posts. For free, you can reshare to Twitter. With the upgraded version ($75/yr.), you can also reshare to LinkedIn and Facebook.  I think it’s worth it just to save the time of manually scheduling. You pick the time frame and you can exclude posts that are not “evergreen” or are time-sensitive.

Think of it this way, your perfect potential customer could have missed it the first time it went out!

What You Need to Do: Don’t be afraid to reshare your content.

4. Blogging – a CORE part of your Content Strategy

Blogs are rated 1 out of 5 the most trusted sources of information online.

People ignore the paid ads in Google search and go for the organic content because they know that that’s where they’re going to find the authentic answers to their questions or problems.

What You Need to Do: Read some of my articles on blogging:

Blogger and copywriter service5. Build Relationships through Your Content

“Content builds Relationships, Relationships are built on Trust. Trust delivers Revenue.” ~ Andrew Davis

Good content marketing builds relationshipsAnd this applies not to just blogs, but what you post on social media and the videos and podcasts you produce. The more you post about what you know, the more you solidify and build credibility and trust.

Even if you use direct mail, people are going to check you out online, before they hire you or buy your products. People will…

  • Google your company or brand name
  • Look at reviews not just on Google, but on Facebook and Yelp
  • Compare prices and check out your competition
  • Read more information until they are satisfied that they can trust you

People buy from whom they know and trust.

What You Need to Do: Produce good, quality content, build your following and build your email list.

6. Visual Content

Change is tough, but the alternative is obsolesenceYes, videos, but also pictures, animated gifs and infographics work. Even if you don’t sell a product, you can share inspirational and motivational quotes as well as original graphics.

B2B or B2C, you can use these two social networks to share eye-catching visuals….

Instagram:

Here are some recent Instagram stats:

  • 68% of Instagram users engage with brands regularly
  • Instagram has 58 times more engagement per follower than Facebook
  • 50% of users follow a business
  • 60% of Instagrammers say that they learn about a product or service on the platform
  • 75% of Instagrammers take action after being inspired by a post, like visiting a website, searching, shopping or telling a friend

Pinterest: “The World’s Catalog of Ideas.”

Here are some recent Pinterest stats:

  • 150 Million monthly active users
  • 67% of pinners are under 40-years old
  • Male users have grown by 150% in the past year
  • 87% of pinners have purchased a product because of Pinterest
  • 72% of pinners use Pinterest to decide what to buy offline

What You Need to Do: Go visual – figure out what will work for your business.

Make 2017 Your Best Year Ever!7. Be Impactful

Free Download: Define Your Target Market WorkbookFor content to be Effective, it must have IMPACT. In order to be impactful, your content must be MEMORABLE. To be memorable, requires that you truly Understand Your Audience (target market).

Yes, we’re back to that again. What does it mean to Understand Your Target Market?

Knowing the answers to these questions as it applies to your perfect customer…

  • What makes them happy?
  • Who do they trust for information?
  • Where are they hanging out online? In other words, which networks do they prefer?
  • What angers them?
  • What are their pain points and problems that you can solve?
  • Who influences them?
  • What are their wants, desires and dreams?
  • How is your content going to impact their lives? To Sell or Not to Sell: What is the Right Ratio on Social Media

Is your content going to try to sell them something right away even if they’re not ready to buy? Or is it going to provide useful information that they can use right away hence building trust?

People Buy from whom the Know and Trust

You need to map where the customer is in their buying journey.

  • Do they need more information?
  • Have they developed trust towards your company?
  • Can they make a decision to buy right away, or do they have more questions?

What You Need to Do: Download my free Define Your Target Market Workbook

  1. Answer all the questions as it pertains to your business whether B2B or B2C. You can have more than one target market.
  2. Create buyer personas for your defined targets.
  3. Research your target and your industry so you can understand their buying habits as well as their online media usage.

8. Create Memorable and Evergreen Content

Content that's memorable builds trustIf your business is anything like mine, you need to educate your target market in why they need your product or service; why what you have to offer is better, different, more effective, etc.

Your content can, of course, be in the form of a blog or static pages on your website, but they can also be….

  • Videos
  • Podcasts
  • Infographics
  • Social Media Posts

The objective is to build trust and credibility. You need to us Truth as a Service.

Evergreen content is anything that’s not time-sensitive, seasonal, or talking about an event or specific day. It stands the test of time. You can share it over and over again and it still is applicable. Its information is useful and solves problems that people keep having.

Give them best practices to tackle their problems. Think emotion and functionality. The folks at Copyblogger define it this way….

These special resources are in-depth examinations of a problem, solution, trend, or topic. They can help your audience find tons of information on a subject that interests them, which adds value to your blog.

Evergreen content is timeless.

What You Need to Do: Plan out your content marketing strategy.

9. Provide the AnswersYour content markeing should provide answers to the questions your target is asking.

It’s up to you to provide the answers to the questions Your Target Market Personas are asking. Are you getting it yet? You can’t answer the questions if you don’t know what they are!

I like Q&A sites like Mosaic Hub and Quora. I’m signed up to get an email every time someone asks a question in my fields of expertise. The idea is to try and be the first one to answer the question — providing the best answer. If you see that someone beat you to it and their answer is the same as yours, I give them a thumbs up and don’t bother writing the same thing. HOWEVER, this just gave you material for a blog post or a video. If people are asking it on those Q&A sites, they’re asking it also on Google and YouTube.  [Related: SEO in 2017] YouTube is the 2nd largest search engine next to its parent, Google. The most searched-for phrase on YouTube is “How to”.

What You Need to Do: Get on those Q&A sites and search for the questions pertaining to your field of expertise.

10. Make sure EVERYTHING is Optimized for Mobile!

Google Mobilegeddon 2017 is coming!I cover mobile as it relates to SEO in the previous article of this 2017 planning series.

Here are some tips to make sure you’re content can be seen on mobile devices:

  • Large enough type. No smaller that 14 pt, 16 pt is considered the best size.
  • Pictures not too large and they should be responsive – that is, they move over when viewed on a small screen so you can see the text.
  • External links (links to sites outside yours) should open to a new tab in the browsers.
  • Your mobile website should have the same content as your desktop site. What that means is that it contains all your static pages and your blog posts.
  • Make sure there are NO POPUPS in your mobile site. Starting Jan. 10, 2017, Google will block sites with popups in mobile!

What You Need to Do: Visit your site on a mobile device. If it’s not optimized, do something about it.

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