Monthly Archives :

September 2013

3 Blogging Tips That Will Help Increase Your Exposure!

3 Blogging Tips That Will Help Increase Your Exposure! 900 600 Kari Switala

Guest Blogger & Expert: Janet E Johnson, 15 Minute Social

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I recently asked my clients and prospects what questions they had when it came to blogging. There were 3 main questions that most people had. I asked my friend, Janet E. Johnson a social media and blogging expert for her input on these 3 questions. Here’s what she had to say…

  1. Do you need a large following of subscribers on your blog in order for it to have positive affect on your business?

No, there are multiple ways to get your blog seen.  Personally, I’d rather have one subscriber on my blog and thousands on my email list.  People are not using feeds like they used to.  Even Google realized this because they shut down the Google Reader.

So I would not worry about subscribers on the blog as much as subscribers to your email list.  I make sure readers see my email opt-in form on my blog multiple times.  I have it on the side bar, in the blog post and at the end of the blog post.  They won’t miss it.  Other ways get people to your blog is consistency, search engine optimization, social media, guest blogging and blog sharing sites like I discuss in number 3 (below).

 

  1. How often should you be blogging in order to increase your search engine rankings?

The frequency below found on About.com.

  • For maximum growth: post multiple times per day to drive the most traffic (3-5 times or more is considered best for power bloggers).
  • For steady growth: post at least once per day.
  • For slower growth: publish at least every 3 days or 2-3 times per week.
  • For very slow growth: posting less frequently than 2-3 days per week is most appropriate for bloggers who maintain blogs as a hobby with no strategic plans for growth

 

Here’s my take on the above list.  It completely depends on your goals!  If you are a small business, not a blogger, you still should blog.  And you can get amazing results with consistent content, even if it is 3-4 times per month.  I know this first hand.  My husband is a general contractor, so about a year ago I started blogging there 2-4 times per month consistently.  Our goal is every other Tuesday and sometimes more.  His search results for local listings on Google have grown to the top positions for multiple keywords that we focused on in our posts. This leads me into my next point, optimizing each post for specific keywords.

 

For search rankings, it is not as much about how often you blog.  It is more about consistency and making sure each blog post is specific to ONE Keyword. You can write one post well and get it ranked immediately if you do the pieces right.  I suggest the WordPress SEO plugin by Yoast.  With this tool, you can put in the specific keyword and it tells you where you need to have the keyword in your post for proper optimization.

 

  1. Where can I find great copy from other bloggers to repost on my blog site?

My favorite website to connect with other bloggers and share their content is triberr.com. Triberr is a community of talented bloggers and influencers that have come together to read and share great content.  And it’s FREE!  You can share excellent blog posts to all your social sites directly from inside triberr.com.  There are different tribes you can connect with to follow bloggers in your niche.

 

They also have a WordPress plugin to reblog right on your own website.  When you set this up, it is like having a guest post without all the extra effort of finding someone.  Plus, your content gets shared and reblogged.  It is a robust system that simplifies the blogging world.  Here’s a sample of a post that I thought was excellent content by Mike Allton, so I did a ‘reblog’ on my website.  All I have to do is hit the button ‘reblog’ (see image below) and it automatically saves into my drafts.  So I added the image, bolded some text and add credit to the author.  Amazing, huh? There’s even more and I feel I could go on and on, but head over and sign up for yourself.

What Impact Could $77 Have On Your Business…

What Impact Could $77 Have On Your Business… 900 600 Kari Switala

What impact could $77 have on your business? Before we explore this idea…let’s take a look at what $77 can buy you these days:

  • Dinner for a family of 4 at Red Robin
  • A ticket to Cirque du Soleil
  • A powerful, 2-hour, LinkedIn workshop that will help you land your next big client or at least generate 2-3 profitable referrals per week for your business

This is an interesting list, isn’t it? Dinner with the family can always (hopefully depending on how your children behave) be enjoyable, but typically it’s over in an hour and after paying the bill, you are left with a sense of buyer’s remorse (we just paid $77 for dinner and I could have made dinner at home for probably $25…). A ticket to Cirque du Soleil would be amazing. However, it too only lasts a couple of hours and will probably leave you with the feeling that you should work out more or wishing you weren’t such a klutz.  What about a powerful, 2-hour LinkedIn workshop? What kind of impact would that have on your business and your financial future?

Would a $77 investment in your business be worthwhile? It was for me! Utilizing the LinkedIn techniques I teach in my 2 hour LinkedIn workshop I have been able to easily generate over $15,000 in revenue from just one client I received from LinkedIn. The best part is that I only spend 15 minutes per week. Is 15 minutes worth $15,000? I hope the answer to that question is a resounding, “YES!”

Learn how to land your next big client and invest in your business by joining me at my LinkedIn Workshop on October 10th! Click here for more details!

Your Image is Everything…

Your Image is Everything… 900 600 Kari Switala

UnknownGuest Blogger: Dan Iverson, Anthologie

Image is everything. You wouldn’t send your résumé in to a potential employer scrawled out on notebook paper, would you? Of course not. You want to look your best – to be taken seriously. However, many people forget to add this same level of professionalism to their online résumés, specifically when it comes to profile pictures.

Putting your best face forward with a great picture that shows you’re serious about your career can speak volumes to prospective clients, colleagues and business associates. Take that image one step further with a photo that not only shows what you look like, but also showcases your personality and you’ll really stand out from the crowd.

Now you have a chance to stand out, and at an amazing value! Join us from 1 p.m. to 2 p.m. on Tuesday, September 24th at Rasmussen Business College — Bloomington Campus for our head shot mini session event, immediately following Kari’s LinkedIn Workshop (of which, I highly recommend attending). For only $50 you’ll receive 2 unique images to spruce up your business profile online and in print applications (regular price $150).

Click here to learn more about Kari’s event and the mini-headshot sessions available!

Dress for success

We aim to capture your personality with your portrait so it’s important for you to dress in a manner that speaks to who you are and your intended career path. Remember, with business photography, you want to dress for the job you want, not the job you already have. Think about the image you want to project to others and dress accordingly.

• Jackets and coats that are crisp and fitted photograph the best

• Dressing in layers is always a great option for multiple looks

• Solid colors rather than busy patterns add an air of sophistication

• Dark and neutral colors are great for outerwear

• Avoid vibrant colors with shirts unless that’s a part of who you are

• Guys, bring a tie. Ladies, add a scarf. You can always take it off if it’s too formal.

• What’s slimming? Simple, solids, darks, vertical lines and single-breasted suits

It may sound silly, but it’s not a bad idea to practice your smile in a mirror before your session. You may find that your “posed smile” makes you look less approachable. Don’t worry, Anthologie photographer Dan Iverson is a pro at making you relaxed and at ease being yourself in front of the camera.

Hummus, Apple Chips & Birthday Cake…What Do They Have in Common?

Hummus, Apple Chips & Birthday Cake…What Do They Have in Common? 900 600 Kari Switala

images-1What do these 3 items have in common? They are three things you can purchase at Target and all play a role in smart marketing. Yesterday I went to Target to pick up a few random items. One of which was a package of birthday invitations…the second item was going to be hummus. You’re probably wondering where I am going with this…stick with me for just another minute.

When I got to Target I was thirsty and hungry for a snack. I went to their Food Court and ordered a diet coke and hummus. The clerk informed me that they don’t carry hummus anymore, but they have apple chips and she said I’d love them. As much as I appreciated the suggestion, I thought…hmm, why would she suggest the apple chips? Are hummus and apple chips interchangeable? Not in my world. I thanked her for her recommendation and proceeded to think…if she had made a recommendation similar to the item I wanted, I would have bought it. Instead, I just bought my diet coke and went on with my shopping. Now granted, I know that she is not a business owner and probably isn’t concerned with marketing, but if she was, she missed out on an opportunity to sell more!

Fast forward to the end of my shopping experience at Target, which is always somewhat bittersweet as I am a HUGE FAN of Target and LOVE shopping there. The cashier processes my order and hands me my receipt along with some coupons for future use. When I got home I looked at the coupons and laughed. Remember, one of the items I purchased were birthday invitations for my 10 year old and the coupons were for party favors, cake and picture developing. How smart are they? Even though this was a computer generated thought, put together by multiple corporate employees, I appreciated the gesture and the fact that they gave me coupons I could/would actually use.

Are you using smart marketing strategies in your business? Are you taking the time to identify your customer’s needs and making suggestions accordingly? One of the tools I use for smart marketing is called InfusionSoft. My favorite part of using InfusionSoft is having the opportunity to dig deeper with my prospects and clients to find out what interests them so I can custom tailor the information they receive from me. Making it personal vs. simply suggesting a bag of apple chips.

Do you have questions about this article? Simply post them here or send me an email: kari@wildfigmarketing.com

Don’t forget to join my monthly e-mail list! Simply text “Magnetik” to 22828!

 

Did You Know You Can Download Your LinkedIn Contacts?

Did You Know You Can Download Your LinkedIn Contacts? 900 600 Kari Switala

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I LOVE LinkedIn and if you are using it I am sure you do too! One of my favorite LinkedIn gurus, Wayne Breitbarth, author of “The Power Formula for LinkedIn Success,” recently explained one of the newest features of LinkedIn…downloading your 1st degree connections. Here’s how you download your connections:

 

 

You can download your 1st degree connection’s information (name, title, company name & email address) into a spreadsheet (.csv or .vcf format) in two simple ways:

1. If you have already upgraded to LinkedIn Contacts (free and highly recommended) , click on Network, then click contacts, click on settings (top right), click Export LinkedIn Connections and follow the prompts.

2. If you have not upgraded yet, go to your Contacts and on the bottom right click Export Contacts and follow the prompts.

I’m sure many of you are already drooling over the idea of being able to add all of these contacts to your email/mailing list. I don’t want to burst your bubble here, but be cautious when doing so. The CAN-SPAM laws prohibit you from uploading lists of people that haven’t expressed an interest in receiving your information. One strategy you could use would be to send them an email indicating your connection on LinkedIn and ask them to opt-in to your email list and/or use a check box feature where they can check what information they’d like to receive from you. For example, my list could include: e-mail marketing, social media strategies and automated marketing tips.

Useful Resources:

LinkedIn Contacts App for iphone

LinkedIn Contacts Information

LinkedIn Event: Powerhouse Profiles & Profitable Prospecting

CanSpam Act: A Compliance Guide for Business

Closing MORE Sales in LESS Time!

Closing MORE Sales in LESS Time! 900 599 Kari Switala

The Scenario: Being in the construction industry, especially in the state of Minnesota is challenging, because many contractors get the bulk of their bids during their busiest season. One of my clients recently came to me because he was frustrated with his sales process (or lack thereof) and his closing ratio  was a dismal 1 out of 30. As a small business owner, he was strapped for time and needed a better solution.

The Solution:  Together we developed an automated email follow-up campaign that would help him keep track of his prospects, shorten his sales cycle and help him close more sales too.  We did this by creating a simple, 7-day prospect follow-up campaign. We were able to create this campaign after discussing the common questions he received from prospects as well as sales objections. One of the most common sales objections was price, since he was on the higher end of the pricing spectrum. We overcame this by addressing it directly (yet tactfully) within the campaign. Here’s how the campaign worked:

Step #1: My client entered in the first name and email address of the prospect on a webform immediately after he met with them and gave them a quote

Step#2: A thank you email is sent to the prospect immediately after their information is entered on the webform

Step #3: A  second email communication was sent 2 days after the initial thank you email (because we knew that typically each prospect got 2-3 bids and were probably talking to other companies). This email included an article on how to hire the right contractor.

Step #4: The last email correspondence was sent 6 days after the initial email. It thanked the prospect for the opportunity to provide them with a quote and indicated that my client would be calling them to follow up in the next day or two.

Step #5: The most important step is this last one. Once the campaign is completed it send a reminder email to my client to follow-up with the prospect, which ensures that they don’t fall through the cracks.

Do you have questions about this case study? Simply post them here or send me an email: kari@wildfigmarketing.com

Don’t forget to join my monthly e-mail list! Simply text “Magnetik” to 22828!