Recurring Revenue from Expertise

Recurring Revenue from your Expertise

The internet has changed how businesses communicate with their target audiences, potential and former customers. No longer are these groups responding to highly promotional media that is designed to only sell. Instead, they are looking for content that educates and entertains.

By creating content that matches these expectations of your audience, you can accelerate the growth of your small business and create a large, well know brand. This larger organisation will be able to generate the majority of its income from a small core group of customers. The key to this is the demonstration of your expertise. If you can prove you’re a market leader, one with innovative skills and knowledge, you will attract audiences and convert them into long term customers.

So how can you go about generating extra revenue by demonstrating your industry expertise? It actually takes a lot of work to develop a sales funnel that can engage your audience and then deliver a consistent flow of information. This article will explain one of the best ways to demonstrate your expertise easily and generate recurring revenue from a small group of loyal customers.

 

Attracting Your Audience: Where Do You Go?

At the very beginning, it is important to attract your target audience to your site and other marketing medium. There are several ways to do this. The most commonly used marketing strategy is search engine optimisation, even if businesses don’t realise it. Some commentators have stated that Google is the number one traffic provider, with a third of small businesses generating 80% or more of their traffic from the search engine giant.

However, it is not clear whether this includes Pay Per Click adverts or not. Some research has found that organic searching only contributes to approximate 10-30%, whereas paid search can direct almost 50% of your traffic. Yet other companies who do not employ PPC as a marketing channel still report that organic searches can be a major contributor to their website traffic.

Either way, both forms of marketing material are very important for attracting your audience. To generate your traffic through these avenues you need to offer something that is valuable to the audience. The content also needs to be found online. Both rely heavily on the right wording of the content: known as keywords.

While 10 years ago, this would have required you to write the same keyword several times throughout your website copy – Google and other search engines now discourage this. In today’s SEO market, keywords are less strict with long tail and latent semantic indexing calculations common in search engine algorithms. Long tail keywords are words like “create, creating, created” all counting towards the score no matter what form the search engine user asked for.

Latent semantic indexing is where a series of words that essentially mean the same are connected to count towards a score. For instance, internet, online, web and world wide web all refer to the same thing, therefore search engines count them as one.

This makes writing content easier. When writing for search engines, content rarely flowed well. However, when latent semantic indexing and long tailed keywords are used, content can flow better and be more readable. This is more convincing and will help increase conversions and sales.

Social media can also be used as an effective traffic generator. While sometimes your audience will connect with your brand online after they have interacted with it on another platform, in other cases, the interaction comes after they have found some of your social media content. Therefore, demonstrating your expertise on social media is also important.

Email marketing is not considered one of the best options for generating traffic to your site because customers have to sign up to the list prior to being sent content. This means they have already had contact with your brand. The only way that this can be avoided is if you have bought an email marketing list. However, this is illegal in most nations and therefore, not highly recommended.

 

So how do you attract an audience on these channels?

Providing useful information you know the contact needs is the best option. Depending on your industry, the useful content could be anything. However, it is useful to search through the Google Keyword Planner tool to search for what questions are being asked before you start considering your content building strategy.

This tool will tell you exactly how many times certain phrases have been used in search results. All you have to do is to enter in your landing page, your services and what countries you are looking to target and the information will display. For instance, two of the most popular searches for a social media management organisation would be:

  • What is social media?
  • How can I use social media?

There are also other words like social media and social media management, but the questions being asked help guide your content creation stages.

After finding out about what your target audience is searching for, you can then start to build a content strategy.

 

Building A Content Strategy

Your content strategy is the most important aspect of your online marketing strategy. Without any kind of direction you will not be able to attract a targeted audience, which is vital if you want to have a good return on your investment.

The first thing you want to do is write down all the popular keyword and phrases. Then taking each one of these separately, create a basic premise of how you would answer the question or create content based on that keyword.

Once done, write each piece of content. Remember that the point of writing each piece of content is to inform your audience about something or solve a problem. So, for example, you could explain how to grow a Twitter following or start a LinkedIn group to gain more awareness for a brand.

Whatever the content you are writing there are four key points to remember:

  1. Be informative.
  2. Don’t sell your services.
  3. Be consistent.
  4. Publish regularly.

The style of the writing and how you talk to your audience can be completely up to you. However, remember who your audience is. If you are looking to talk to senior business professionals, then you need to keep a persona that they will want to interact with and this will likely be different than a group of sport fanatics.

When creating content for social media, you should create a mix or content. In this mix should be content for directing users to your blog content, communicating with other users and little snippets of information about your industry.

Communication with your audience is important as many users on social media do consider it a community led tool rather than a sales platform. In fact, selling directly on social media has been proven to be highly ineffective with only 1% of all online sales generated through social media updates.

However, by communicating with your target audience and providing them with links to your other content or by giving them snippets of information, you will drive traffic to your site.

As time goes on, your organic rating will increase on the search engines and this will raise you higher in the ranks.

At the same time you can implement a strong PPC campaign that can direct traffic to your site when they show on the side and at the top of the screen for a certain list of keywords. During your PPC campaigns you should look to split test adverts. This is when you have two adverts and you see which one attracts the most traffic and converts more. The one that performs better is kept and another version is then tested.

 

Keeping The Traffic Coming Back

Once you have started generating all this traffic you need to consider how you are going to get the visitor to return. Only about 30% of your visitors will return to your website; unless you subscribe them to something. The most common tool for subscribing visitors is an email contact list.

This list can be generated by directly asking the contact for their details; however, you might find it more efficient to offer them something in exchange for their details. The best options are a free download. The download has to be something that has value to the customer. Therefore, you should look at the commonly asked questions again from the Google Keyword Planner and create small ebooks or whitepapers based on that.

Once you have collected their email address, you can start to market to them with emails. This can be highly effective. A good email copy has the following aspects:

  • Some useful advice.
  • Links to new content (i.e. blog articles, podcasts, etc).
  • An offer.

You need to examine the results of your campaigns every time you send some content. See what is encouraging them to interact with your brand. This will give you an indication of what they are interested in. You might also want to phone up some of the contacts if they have opened your email and clicked through on the offer several times.

One of the most important parts of email marketing is to segregate your email list. This helps you target your audience with specific information that is only relevant to them. It is also useful at separating your potential customers from your current / old customers.

 

Generating Continuous Revenue From Existing Customers

As soon as your contacts make the transition from being potential to current customers you should transfer them to a new list. This helps you to sell more products to them. It is always easier to sell to an existing customer than it is to sell to a new customer. It is also more cost effective.

If you provide high quality customer service to your customers, then you’ll find that they will spend more with you at every transaction. They will also be an advocate for your brand, encouraging others to buy from you..

Your email marketing strategy plays a critical role in this process. However, instead of just trying to sell them a product that they have shown no interest in; there are other options for your business now. The obvious task is to sell them items that are related to their recent purchases. Amazon is very good at doing this and often sell products that were bought with certain purchases.

This does take some careful analysis and consideration, but it is also one of the most successful paths to creating a continuous flow of revenue from a small group of customers.

There are also certain lead generation tasks that you must undertake.

It is important that you ask them for feedback. If you haven’t performed well, it can help you to make improvements to your service for other customers. At the same time, you can then remove them from the list knowing it would be hard to convert them into a repeat customer.

Positive feedback can also be shared with other potential customers through your social media channels, website or email. Word of mouth is a very potent selling technique and may speed up the process to selling to others.

 

Conclusion

Digital marketing is one of the best ways to convert potential customers into long term customers. Loyal customers are highly useful at generating income by being a brand advocate. The main thing that you have to remember is to continue to publish new content and deliver it to them. The content should be highly valuable to your audience, answering questions to solve problems that they might have.

Then when they have landed upon your page you subscribe them your mailing list and email them offers and new content that can convert them into customers. From there you can convert them into long term customers by offering them more advice from your expertise and by offering them the chance to share their customer experience with you and the rest of the world.

Doing this process will help you generate a stable income from a relatively small group of customers with only a good set of publishing tools and our expertise.


Split Test Landing Pages

Split Testing Landing Pages

Your landing pages are an important part of the inbound marketing process. They act as an information gathering tool; collecting names, email addresses and other details from your website visitors. These details can then be used in further online marketing campaigns for closing deals with potential customers.

Yet, like many aspects of online marketing, you need to ensure your landing pages are optimised for your target audience. Not optimising these pages can result in lower returns from your marketing efforts. To maximise your landing page’s success, you can run a split test campaign.

This article is about why you should do split testing and how you can manage a campaign.

 

What Is Split Testing?

Split testing is the process of having two versions of the same landing page that has just a single difference between them. The variation between the two pages can be as slight as the call to action button or as complex as the page’s colour scheme or design.

When a business is conducting a split test campaign, there should be an even distribution of visitors to the two different pages. This allows for proper and accurate analysis of the results and for you to make informed decisions.

 

Why Should You Be Conducting Split Tests?

Split testing landing pages is an essential aspect of your website’s maintenance. On a basic level, split testing allows you to optimise your landing pages so more people sign up to your email newsletter or buy a product.

Optimising your website’s landing pages can’t be done just by adjusting your website and seeing if anything improves the results. Split testing offers more benefits for your websites that just optimising your site. For instance, just making changes without having a control is not an accurate method for recording results and can slow down the data gathering process. This is because you don’t know if there has been a shift in the audience being directed to your site or whether your audience’s response is dependent on the season / time of the year.

Split testing allows you to speed up the testing process by seeing results over a week; rather than testing the landing page for months. Also, because you are keeping both versions of the landing pages, if the original performs better – you don't have to re-create that page.

 

What Can You Test In Split Testing?

There are many different elements which can be changed during a split test campaign. Here are some of the elements on your landing page that you could change and some ideas for tests.

Headline

The heading on your landing page is very important. It can signal to the reader what the page is about and what they are being offered. Therefore, ensuring that this is optimised can be very important. It isn't just the headline copy that can be tested; you can adjust the headline’s colour, position and style.

Sub headline

Just like the headline, there are many changes that can be made to the sub headline. The sub headline is something can develop the interest of your audience further by giving lots of information about what the offer is but without giving away too much detail.

Page copy

The page copy can be changed significantly. Some of the basic changes are similar to how you can change the headline or sub headline. However, you are not limited to the style, colour, position or the actual copy. There is also the option to change the format; you can add in bullet points or shorten paragraphs.

Images

The images on your landing page are very important. The human mind can process images quicker than text and it plays a very crucial role in the purchasing decision process. The different elements of the landing page’s image that can be changed, except for the image itself, include:

  • Image size.
  • Image position.
  • Colour or black and white.
  • Image rotation.
  • Image shape (the same image being in square / circle).
  • Change it from a still image to a video.

Call To Action

The call to action on your landing page is the area of the website that converts the visitors to leads. Therefore, you should be constantly testing this part of the landing page to ensure that the correct design. There are many different tests you can complete with your call to actions. For instance:

  • The text of the image.
  • The button shape.
  • The button colour.
  • The position of the call to action button.
  • The size of the call to action.
  • The text colour.

Social Proof

The professional image of your business and the service it presents can rest upon the social proof you offer on the landing page. Whether this is a client testimonial or a collection of reviews that are aggregated into a star rating; your reviews can convince visitors to convert. Try swapping your testimonials every so often to see if another is more persuasive.

 

How Long Should You Run A Test?

The length of time that you should run a split test depends on the number of visitors you have. If you have several thousand visitors per day, you could run a campaign each week before analysing the results. If you only have a couple of hundred, you should run the tests for a month.

 

What Should I Do After I Have Finished Testing A Landing Page?

Once your split testing has been completed, you will need to look at which landing page has performed the best. There are several factors to look at including the sign-up rate but also the number of customers each landing page eventually generated. It may be that one page created more leads but had a lower lead to customer rate.

Once you have decided which landing page has performed best, you take the other landing page off your site and then run another test making a slight change to the landing page that performed best on the previous test.

 

Conclusion

Testing your landing pages continuously will allow you to improve your landing pages, grow your business and achieve better sales. Split testing is the best way you can adjust your website’s landing pages and is very easy to implement. All you need to do is to decide which element to test, how long to run the tests and how to divide the traffic that lands upon your site.


Scheduling Blog Content

Scheduling Blog Content

One of the best ways for you to generate traffic for your website is to create and publish blog content.

It provides evidence for your industry specific expertise and authority and most blog readers trust information published on a blog. It is also one of the best ways to get your site ranked on search engines such as Google and Bing.

With good content you can also receive lots of inbound links from other blogs who reference the information in your blog articles; this can also help with your website’s search engine rank.

While many businesses believe in the benefits of building and publishing content through a blog; their blogging efforts can fail because they cannot keep up with the demands of blog writing. Often what happens is that the first couple of weeks perform well and the business produces sufficient content to keep publishing. But soon project commitments or another problem arises which reduces the time the business can dedicate to their blog. This leads to a scenario where the business misses deadlines for publishing blog content.

While many business leaders believe that this is only a minor problem, it can cause significant problems with search engine ranks and the opinions of your customers.

The opinion of your customers is very critical. If you don’t keep up with a schedule and customers notice gaps in your publishing history, they may feel your blog is no longer active or the business has shut down.

For the same reason, Google and other search engines will believe you are inactive and will lower your site’s rank on their result pages.

This can lead to a significant drop in web traffic for your business. Google is one of the main traffic generators for most small businesses and the lower your rank, the less traffic that will come to your site.

Another problem with not scheduling your content in advance is that when you are manually uploading and publishing content, you can often miss the best times of the day. This will reduce the traffic to your site, the number of interactions each piece of content can potentially receive and finally reduce the awareness of your brand.

 

How Can You Prevent This From Happening?

One of the best ways to avoid these problems is to create your content in advance and schedule it for release. This can have several benefits for your organisation, the biggest of which is that you will never miss a publishing date and will retain your search engine rank.

Another benefit includes the ability to perfect and plan your content better. This makes your marketing campaigns more effective and your search engine optimisation strategy better in the long term. As your strategy becomes better, the results will improve and you can grow your business with limited paid advertising.

For this to happen however, you need to have strong management skills and a clear process for developing the content for your website’s blog. Without these skills, you will not keep to the schedule and you will miss publishing dates.

 

So What Is The Best Process To Have?

There are several steps to the process of the scheduling blog content, which if you follow will ensure that you will never miss a deadline. Here is a brief overview of this best strategy for developing, creating and scheduling in your business’ blog content.

  1. Content Idea Development

The first thing you need to do is to decide on what topics you’re going to cover in the short, medium and long terms. With each topic, you need to assign several titles so that you know what you are writing. These titles don’t have to be exact. You can optimise them later or you might realise, during the writing of the content, your title is no longer applicable and it needs to be adjusted.

At the same time, it is best practice to write down some notes on what you would like to cover in the topics. For instance, if you were writing a blog post about what are the best programs to complete your tax returns on, you would write the list of software programs and the reasons why you have chosen them.

  1. Write The Content

The next step is to create the content. This is where most of the work is completed and can take anywhere from 30 minutes to several hours. There may be some research involved which can obviously lengthen this process.

While you are writing the content, include all the links to references you have used. Google includes the outbound links in their ranking formula and they add creditability to your content. You don’t want to forget where you got that key statistic from when you are uploading your content later on; so it is best to include it in your first draft.

  1. Edit Your Content

Very rarely is content brilliantly written on the first attempt. Therefore, ensure that you are reviewing your content for factual information, spelling and grammar. If this is not your best skill, ask for a colleague or a professional proof-reader / editor to look over the content for you.

  1. Schedule In Your Content

When you have finished editing your content, upload your content onto your chosen blogging platform. This should be done with at least two weeks to the publishing date to go. This allows you to check the content once more for errors and ensures you aren’t completing the task last minute.

  1. Check Content

A couple of days before the publishing date; do a final check of the content for errors. A little time between your first edit and the second edit can often be needed for seeing some of the small errors that escaped you the first time.

  1. Check Your Content Was Published Correctly

At some point after you have scheduled your blog post to go live, check your website to ensure the blog post did go live. Some blogging platforms can accidently delay the publishing of content. If this happens you can manually publish the blog post within seconds.

 

Conclusion

Your blogging schedule is as important as the content itself. Irregular or missed content is often assumed to be the work of an unprofessional business owner. Therefore, ensure this is not the image you are promoting to your audience by regularly updating your blog with fresh content by writing and scheduling it in advance.


Scientists Discover New Element

New Element Discovered!

I just received this exciting news in an email from my aunt:

“Oxford University researchers have discovered the heaviest element yet known to science. The new element, Governmentium (symbol=Gv), has one neutron, 25 assistant neutrons, 88 deputy neutrons and 198 assistant deputy neutrons, giving it an atomic mass of 312.  These 312 particles are held together by forces called morons, which are surrounded by vast quantities of lepton-like particles, called pillocks.

Since Governmentium has no electrons, it is inert. However, it can be detected, because it impedes every reaction with which it comes into contact.  A tiny amount of Governmentium can cause a reaction that would normally take less than a second, to take from 4 days to 4 years to complete.  Governmentium has a normal half-life of 2 to 6 years. It does not decay, but instead undergoes a reorganisation in which a portion of the assistant neutrons and deputy neutrons exchange places.

In fact, Governmentium’s mass will actually increase over time, since each reorganisation will cause more morons to become neutrons, forming isodopes. This characteristic of moron promotion leads some scientists to believe that Governmentium is formed whenever morons reach a critical concentration.  This hypothetical quantity is referred to as a critical morass. When catalysed with money, Governmentium becomes Administratium (symbol=Ad), an element that radiates just as much energy as Governmentium, since it has half as many pillocks but twice as many morons.”