Different Ways to Keep in Touch with Your Opt-In Email List

Having a newsletter is an excellent way to keep in touch with your opt in email list. A call out to ask your readers to subscribe to email list is a great strategy. Newsletters can be published daily, weekly, or monthly and can include any type of information. The problem comes, however, when you just cannot come up with anything else to say in your newsletter, or if you cannot stick to the publishing schedule.

If you want to keep in touch with customers or clients, but do not have the time and energy to create a customer newsletter every week, there are five great options to help you.

Create an E-Course

An e-course, or e-tutorial, is a series of informative emails that are sent through an auto responder service. You can write the stages of the e-course beforehand and then just set up the program to send them over a set period of time. You can send out the lessons once per week, or once per month, until they are all sent.

Of course, once the entire series of lessons has been sent to your opt in subscriber, there will be no more contact with them. You can include at the end of the e-course an invitation to another one, or to another newsletter option.

Use a Forum or Message Board

A membership forum or message board can be a great way to keep in touch with those who sign up. Not only can customers or clients talk amongst themselves about the business or products, but you can come by weekly and post an update for all of them to read.

This method of keeping in touch with your interested website visitors is slightly more time intensive than an e-course. A forum requires someone to moderate it and make sure that the members are not posting things that are against the rules.

If you do not want to worry about that, you can make the message board closed to new posts or discussions, and just use it as an announcement board.

Get a Blog

Business blogs are becoming very popular ways of keeping in touch with interested website customers or visitors. While your website may have static content, a blog can be constantly updated to include any new products or information. Unlike a newsletter, however, you do not have to update a blog on a regular basis. A simple announcement at the top of your website telling when you have posted a new blog post will suffice.

Keeping in touch with your clients and customers is an important thing to do if you want to have a successful internet business. Having a newsletter is one of the most popular ways of doing so. However, if the time constraints or need for constantly new content are impossible to deal with, there are a few other great options.

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Consumer Review Websites

If you are like most people, you like to do reviews of the merchandise you are considering buying. I am going to list several sites that are able to assist you so that you do not spend all day in front of the computer, just to walk away exasperated and upset with no information that helps you to reach your final decision. A few of the sites that I am going to list do act as merchants as well, however they have a large database of reviews on their sites, which I feel earns this a spot on this list. You are always free to purchase your item from another site, or even somewhere in your local area, the choice is yours.

Site #1 – Newegg.com

This is an online merchant who aside from offering great deals also has reviews from customers and those who purchased the item from somewhere else. They have been very helpful to me in looking at the products that they have. Biggest drawback here is, if newegg does not sell the item, it is not in their database. While that is a disadvantage, it can reduce the amount of time you are spending searching for the correct product as well.

Site #2 – Amazon.com

Once again another online merchant, however if Amazon.com does not have it listed in their database I must wonder if the item does exist. They have an enormous collection of reviews covering almost everything imaginable. Once again, you are free to purchase from them or someone else, however their reviews are almost always helpful.

Site #3 – Yahoo! Shopping

This is going to be a bit confusing if you are not careful; their reviews tend to be heavily saturated with different companies pushing their business. Choose a merchant carefully if you select one you find this way, however the reviews are fairly good. They seem to run consistent with the reviews I have found on other sites.

Site #4 – ConsumerReview.com

This is a site that is strictly devoted to consumer reviews. Search the database for the item you are looking for, as well as you can submit your own review. This site also offers several specialized websites that break their large database down a bit into different categories, which is meant to help reduce the time you spent searching.

Site #5 – ConsumerReports.org

This is the online version of the popular magazine Consumer Reports. They offer reviews from everything imaginable in the house, and outside. Massive library of reviews available here to search.

Site #6 – ComsumerSearch.com

feedbackWhile this is another review site, they only feature reviews written by professionals. While a professional opinion can be helpful, I personally prefer a review by someone who has used the item I am researching in their normal daily lives as I will be doing. This to me seems to be a better method; however, some experts are better judges of equipment than the normal consumer. The choice is yours on which type of review you prefer.

Site #7 – Epinions.com

Once again another online review site, this site links the product manufacture’s website to the review, as well as a picture of the item, so you can make sure that you are looking at the exact item you are looking for.

Site #8 – RateItAll.com

Another consumer review site that offers reviews on almost anything you can imagine. The reviews are not as good quality wise as some other sites, but they are still helpful in confirming any ideas or thoughts you have about property.

Of course, once you are about sure you want to purchase a specific product, you can always check the merchant’s website as well for a brief last minute review search. Most offer small review databases, and are quite simple to check. Remember to always review the product thoroughly before you make any purchases, so that you are happy with the item.

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The Greatest Way to Acquire Free Traffic to Your Website

If there’s one thing that every website owner wants, it’s more traffic. But how do you drive more traffic to your website without resorting to traditional paid marketing methods? Luckily, many methods have been created over the years to do just that: spawn an endless flood of traffic to your website absolutely free.
This article will share five of the most common, proven and effective methods to create free website traffic.

Method #1: Blogging

Blogging is much like a normal website but many additional benefits such as plugins that help increase your search engine ranking, interactivity and the flexibility to become whatever you need it to be. Each day, write a piece of content for your blog this way you’ll have another page indexed on search engines and another reason to share content with the web – the backbone of driving traffic.

Method #2: Video production

Video is a phenomenon that has taken the world by storm; did you know that you can create your own set of videos for less than $100 these days? Try creating a set of videos related to your content, place your link in the description (or video) and set back as each day you gain additional chances to send traffic your way.

Method #3: Content submission

traffic-analyticsContent on your website will give a reason for people to come visit but if you want to build backlinks and create a strong web presence you’ll need to begin to submit your content on other websites. You can begin by writing articles for article directories, guest blog on other blogs, release a press release and many other methods – the point is to create content on other sites.

Method #4: Social media

Social media doesn’t have to stop at just talking to your friends and family; social media is actually one of the easiest ways to begin driving free traffic to your website. There are literally thousands of social media websites on the web; however, the main ones you should focus on should be Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and niche forums. As always, share great content and interact with users this way you give them additional incentive to click your links and visit your website.

Method 5: Email lists

Finally, every visitor that you drive to your website gives you the opportunity to make them stick and bring them back over and over again. One of the easiest (and best) ways to keep a person stick to your website is to offer them an incentive to subscribe to your list. Once on your email list, you can send them helpful information that drives them back to you website whenever another email goes out.

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How to Use Blog Commenting to Build Backlinks and Traffic

Blog commenting is simple enough: fill in your details leave a comment and you’re done. But what if you want to use your comments as a way to help build backlinks and drive traffic to your website?

The following article will help you with exactly that; this is how you can build backlinks and traffic through blog commenting.

Method 1: CommentLuv blogs

First in this list is to comment on blogs with CommentLuv enabled.

CommentLuv is a Wordpress plug-in that allows a commenter to automatically leave a recent blog post of their own within the comment area. After you’ve placed your information, CommentLuv will scan your blog and display between 5 – 10 recent blog posts to leave. Adding a comment on CommentLuv enabled blogs can help you build a backlink and has a potential for traffic as other readers can click through and visit your comment.

Method 2: DoFollow blogs

For many years, blog used the NoFollow tag within their comments so link-juice wouldn’t be passed to the commenter’s blog. Now, helpful plugins and Wordpress tweaks have given blog owners the choice in DoFollow vs. NoFollow. On a DoFollow blog, simply leave a comment as you normally would and you’ll be awarded with a powerful backlink.

Method 3: Leave a very helpful comment

Hands down, the best way to drive traffic to your own website or blog is to leave a very, very helpful comment. Instead of just saying “nice post!” takes the time to read through and dig into the information, telling your own, asking questions or even disagreeing (but backing your own comment with facts). Those that find your comment helpful will want to know more that you have to offer, click through and visit your site.

Method 4: Reply to other comments

A sneaky (no-brainer) trick to building backlinks and traffic is to just reply to other comments. More often than not, only the blog owner will respond to other commenter’s – now you will be. By commenting on other comments, you’ll not only increase the total amount you have on the post but also build the potential for the other commenter to visit your site or build backlinks.

Method 5: Go for top commenter’s

Finally, a helpful Wordpress plugin that gives you the opportunity to build massive backlinks and traffic is the Top Commenter’s plugin. The Top Commenter’s plugin will display those that have commented on the blog the most. By being in the list, more-often-than-not, your link will be on every page of the blog and have a greater potential for clicks and traffic.

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Organic Search Engine Optimization: The Basics

Organic SEO is a term thrown around by many online professionals and writers that may sound odd but in the simplest of explanations: organic SEO is naturally crafting your content, obtaining rankings and building an SEO-friendly website.

Because search engines are such a high driving factor in website traffic, organic search results are what many website owners aim for; the higher your website ranks for its keywords – the higher amount of traffic you’ll receive.

So what are the basics of organic SEO and how can you obtain high ranking results through its implementation? A colleague who has been an entrepreneur and into Atlanta SEO for years has given me these basic points about SEO:

#1: Keyword rich titles

One of the basics (and fundamental) “rule” of organic SEO is the proper creation of your title tag.

Your title tag is the first thing people see when searching for content within search engines. In order to rank high within these search results you must craft your title to include the main keywords related to each page of content.

#2: Keyword (and interesting) descriptions

Secondly, organic SEO doesn’t just need to be high rankings it needs to also increase your click through. A website with the number one ranking in search engines that doesn’t have an attractive description will often receive less traffic than lower ranked pages with better ones.

Create your description to tell what the reader can expect if they click through, include power words to peak their interest and be sure to use your keywords to rank well within organic SEO.

#3: Great content

online-marketingA fundamental property of organic SEO is creating great content. Great content goes beyond touching on a simple idea – it digs deep and becomes a reference point for all those that have read it.

You will want to use your keywords throughout your content but always craft your content in a manner that people will enjoy reading and want to share. Create content that people don’t expect, wow them and give them a reason to tell their friends.

#4: Natural link building

Finally, as part of your organic SEO results you’ll want to build links naturally. Backlinks will help you rank higher within search engines as they indicate to search engine algorithms others love your content (by linking to it).

The easiest way, again, is to create great content but be sure to network with other influential website owners and even go to the extent to ask for a link back to your content.

Natural backlinks will take some time but if you have patience and wait for them to roll in while building up your website you won’t harm your rankings with deceptive link building; you’ll become a master of organic SEO.

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Key Elements to the Marketing Plan: Setting and Allocating the Budget

In order to create a comprehensive marketing plan, you need to incorporate certain key elements. Once you have determined your goals and objectives, you then develop strategies to achieve them. Having done this, you can assign responsibility and set time lines for tasks to be completed. The next step of the process is setting and allocating a budget.This allows you to align your financial resources with your overall plan.

There are several ways to determine an appropriate budget that provides a cost effective way to market your business. One way is to allocate a certain percent of your sales towards your media and promotional plan. This method allows for increased spending as your overall sales volume grows. As long as there is profitable sales growth, this approach makes sense. Another way is to institute a “cents per unit sold” budget. For example, if you sell 100,000 boxes of product, and you allocate .10 per box, you would have a $10,000 marketing budget. If you have a set margin per unit, this is a good approach to use. For smaller companies another way to determine a budget is to use a monthly figure based on available cash flow. This will give you better control of your spending, however you must still allocate enough money to support the marketing effort. Whatever method you use to set the budget, it is important that you allocate a realistic amount that enables proper execution of the plan’s strategies.

Once you have a total budget, you need to determine how much is going to be spent on media (i.e. print, radio, direct mail) and how much on promotion (i.e. samplings, special events, customer entertainment). This will largely depend on the particular business you are in. The main idea is to develop a mix that allows you to allocate resources for the activities that will be most effective in growing your sales. Understanding your product and the marketplace you compete in will make this process easier to implement.

An important part of the budget process, is to build in ways to maximize the money spent. If you are buying radio, negotiate additional promotional value that ties your product or service into their on-air activities. Form “trade for mention” opportunities with all your media partners. Develop cross promotional programs with complimentary products and services. There are numerous ways to leverage the money you currently spend. By doing this on a consistent basis you will stretch your marketing dollars.

Setting and properly allocating a budget gives you the best chance to utilize the financial resources you have to grow your business. While this process will take some time and effort, it will provide a solid return on your investment.

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Telling the Truth in Your Advertising

Just because your company is working to get the word out about your fabulous products or services in a creative and contagious way, doesn’t mean unsubstantiated claims and dishonest marketing should be part of your advertising efforts. Making claims you cannot support or untrue statements in your marketing will eventually hurt your company in a major way in the long run.

Sometimes, when you are working to be creative, original, and even outrageous in your business’ marketing campaigns, the line between fact and fiction can get a bit blurred. Originality and outrageousness can be really great elements in buzz-worthy and contagiously affective advertising – but make sure you are not making any statements about your product – what it can do, how much it costs, etc. – or your services to the customer that you cannot back up and support. The old adage is true – bad news travels much faster than good news does. And, the negative publicity generated from untruths will kill your customer trust, not to mention your sales may be dead before they ever get off the ground.

campaignIn addition to creating an advertising message that is simple, clear and accessible – you’re also trying to tell customers and potential customers a “story” about your company, your product and/or your services. This “story” needs to be true and accurate. As word spreads and customers talk about your company, information is likely to get distorted naturally (think of the natural course of gossip, or that old child’s game of “telephone.”) If you at least start the flow of information with accurate, truthful claims – you might be able to influence positive chatter. Untrue or unsupported claims in your advertising can really get blown out of proportion through the natural course of word-of-mouth and come back to haunt you.

Before using any marketing or advertising campaign or sending forth a message about your company, products, or services – put it to the truth test. Ask yourself if your company can back up and support every claim you’re making and the product will hold up to the scrutiny of a literal interpretation of the marketing materials. Don’t claim your product will do something it won’t or that your company is offering something that can’t be guaranteed. Keeping your message honest and above board will contribute to building customer trust and loyalty and make your long-term marketing efforts easier.

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