eBusiness Blog

7 Video Marketing Methods for Greater Business Exposure

Did you know Facebook videos get 135% more organic reach than photos?

Today’s video eTip is about using video to your marketing advantage so you can build more business exposure, especially on Facebook.

Watch to find out the 7 different ways you can create video where many of them don’t involve you having to be in front of the camera!

 

It’s no secret video is where it’s at right now, especially in the social marketing scene. There’s lots of reasons for its popularity and tons of stats to prove video really should be incorporated into every entrepreneur and small business marketing arsenal.

Here are seven different ways you can create video to boost your business brand exposure and gain more traction on social media:

#1 Talking Head Videos

Just as I’m doing in the above video, “talking head” simply means standing in front of the camera and, well, talking.

What you talk about can be anything from a teaching point to a stand-up comedy routine! The point is to get yourself out there to showcase your personality, expertise and build the “know, like and trust” factor with your audience.

#2 Live Action Video

If you’re attending a live event, workshop or concert even, taking your camera and posting footage of what you’re seeing is the live action video definition.

You could do your own commentary by explaining what you’re witnessing or let the audio from the stage be what the viewer listens to.

These types of videos are great for Facebook Live, showing what you’re experiencing in the moment.

#3 Video Interviews

This form of video has been around for ages and is still popular today. Find an expert that you know your target market would find interesting and do an interview with them.

I’ve recently done a few – check out this one with Law of Attraction expert, Dana Smithers or this one with Kindi Gill about the importance of investing wisely in your business.

#4 Video Animations

Another popular form of video that seems to be coming back into popularity is animation. This is where a video is put together through a variety of images and drawings, making the video “come to life” through the animation artwork done.

A popular service that helps create such videos is Animoto.

#5 Video Voice Overs

Not too long ago, I was very camera shy. My first attempts at video were of me recording an audio of my eTip and then laying that over a static image.

We also see a lot of this lately on Facebook where someone has taken an inspirational image and put an audio track to it, making it a video, which then gets a higher reach than if it were just an image.

#6 Video Slideshows

Microsoft PowerPoint is a great tool for not just business presentations, but also creating videos with. The later versions facilitate audio tracks so you can record a whole presentation and export it as a video.

#7 Video Screenshares

In my Social Blast monthly membership training program, I use this technique to teach my students in a way that allows me to literally show them what to do and where.

Camtasia or any other type of screenshare software allows you to speak while demonstrating what you’re talking about on your computer. YouTube is full of such demonstration-style videos.

These are a sample of ideas on what you can do to use video in your marketing strategy and build your business brand exposure. Get yourself out there and give it a try!

If you have any questions about SEO or how to incorporate video into your online marketing, feel free to leave a message in the comment section below and I’d be happy to answer. And if you’re looking for assistance with your SEO efforts, give us a call to discuss.

Until next time,
Susan Friesen

P.S. New to Social Media and online marketing or find it overwhelming and confusing? Check out Social Blast: eMarketing for Entrepreneurs. It’s a monthly group coaching program for those just starting out or wanting more advanced strategies to help with their online marketing and social media efforts.
>> CLICK HERE FOR DETAILS

P.P.S. If you found this article helpful, please share it with your Twitter followers:

7 Video Marketing Methods for Greater Business ExposureClick To Tweet

About the Author, Susan Friesen

10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum ResultsSusan Friesen is the founder of eVision Media, a boutique web development and Digital Marketing firm of over 15 years that specializes in designing, building and marketing professional, unique websites for entrepreneurs, businesses and organizations.

Visit www.ultimatewebsiteguide.ca and grab your FREE "Ultimate Guide to Improving Your Website's Profitability - 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum Results".

SEO: Using Video for Better Google Brand Exposure

Does it freak you out to do videos that will help with your online marketing efforts?

Videos play a big role in SEO that can drive qualified traffic back to your website. Take advantage of the momentum video has right now. Today’s video eTip shares some ideas on how to do that.

 

Considering YouTube is a major search engine, there’s great opportunity for your business to take advantage of that real estate and expose your business brand to a larger audience.

How to Incorporate Video Into Your Online Marketing

Right now video is hot – it’s capturing people’s interest and business owners should take advantage of this momentum.

One way to do that is incorporate video into your marketing methods while utilizing search engine optimization methods to those videos for extra impact.

So think of a topic your target audience would find of interest, or help answer a question they might be typing into Google, and do a video on that subject.

These searchers will find your video, watch your content and now be further exposed to your business brand and what you have to offer.

Even if they may not be shopping around specifically for your product or service at that moment, they are now aware of you and will think of you if the need arises or perhaps refer you to others.

What to do with Video to Maximize Your Brand Exposure

When you create a video, first add it to YouTube but also add it to your WordPress blog for even more business exposure.

This is what I’m doing with these video eTips by embedding my YouTube video here into a blog post. Now when people do a search on my video topics, they will either find my video in YouTube or here in my blog.

Videos are a part of what’s known as relationship or pull marketing and may not get you immediate results but will give you long-term benefits in brand exposure and recognition.

Give Your Videos SEO Juice for Ideal Exposure

Your goal is to get in the top 3 pages of search results.

Do this by ensuring your video title and description is SEO optimized with brand-related keywords so the search engines pick it up when your target market is doing a search on your topics.

You’ll want to SEO optimize your YouTube video views as well as the WordPress blog post that has your embedded video into it with keyword-rich title and description meta tags.

If you have any questions about SEO or how to incorporate video into your online marketing, feel free to leave a message in the comment section below and I’d be happy to answer. And if you’re looking for assistance with your SEO efforts, give us a call to discuss.

Until next time,
Susan Friesen

P.S. New to Social Media and online marketing or find it overwhelming and confusing? Check out Social Blast: eMarketing for Entrepreneurs. It’s a monthly group coaching program for those just starting out or wanting more advanced strategies to help with their online marketing and social media efforts.
>> CLICK HERE FOR DETAILS

P.P.S. If you found this article helpful, please share it with your Twitter followers:

SEO: Using Video for Better Google Brand Exposure Click To Tweet

About the Author, Susan Friesen

10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum ResultsSusan Friesen is the founder of eVision Media, a boutique web development and Digital Marketing firm of over 15 years that specializes in designing, building and marketing professional, unique websites for entrepreneurs, businesses and organizations.

Visit www.ultimatewebsiteguide.ca and grab your FREE "Ultimate Guide to Improving Your Website's Profitability - 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum Results".

13 of the Best Ways to Generate Leads with Social Media

13 of the Best Ways to Generate Leads with Social Media

I’ve been thinking about one of the biggest reasons why businesses and entrepreneurs take the time to be on social media. Aside from showing off their cute pets or grandbabies, it’s to help grow their business.

When wanting to grow our business, we often think of the more tradition methods of marketing and advertising. As an example, typical advertising channels are newspaper, radio and TV ads. Where typical marketing includes SEO, PR, and Direct Mail campaigns to name a few.

But when we look to social media to help with this, the approach needs to be different  than those more traditional methods of getting qualified business leads.

Marking a business on social media needs a different approach from traditional marketingClick To Tweet

And that approach is through a method called “inbound, pull or relationship marketing“.

Pull and relationship marketing relies on developing relationships with prospects before doing any overt promotion. The premise being people, especially women, tend to do business with others who they already know, like and trust.

In fact, according to Nielsen, 83% of consumers will trust the recommendations of family and friends so it’s our goal as business owners to gain that trust.

83% of consumers trust family & friends recommendations making relationship marketing importantClick To Tweet

So how does one go about gaining trust and generating qualified leads from social media?

Here’s 13 best ways to attracting qualified leads to your business:

  1. Establish yourself as being knowledgeable in your industry. Do this through your blog, newsletter, and the types of posts you add to your social media accounts.
     
    This authority will build trust with your followers as they learn more and more about what you do, and your expertise in that field.
  2. Pick the best channels for you to get visible on and focus just on those. Don’t try to spread yourself too thin by being everywhere.
     
    Instead of chasing after the social media channels that are getting a lot of attention, ask yourself this important question: “Where is my target audience hanging out?”
     
    Then go build your brand presence there.
  3. Be on social media with the intent of being helpful, not on pushing your wares. People smell desperation a mile away and it’s a turn-off to most.
     
    Instead of always trying to “push” your products or services on others, “pull” them in by being engaged with them. Comment, like and share their posts. Answer questions that are genuinely helpful.
     
    Developing trusting relationships will give you greater returns in the long run than doing nothing but promoting yourself.
  4. Provide exclusive offers just for your loyal followers. In between posting informative posts, sprinkle in special offers, discount codes, contests or giveaways that are exclusive to your Facebook, Twitter or Instagram followers.
     
    Shortstack offers an easy way to hold Instagram, Facebook and Twitter contests that will also help you stay within those platform’s rules.
  5. Ask for a referral after someone has made a purchase. When an online purchase is made, the purchaser is sent to a “thank you” landing page. Use that page to offer some sort of incentive to share what they bought with their social media followers.
  6. Host a Twitter Chat or Facebook Live show. This is a great opportunity to get in front of your followers and showcase your expertise.
     
    Use the show to have a question and answer session, share a valuable tip, strategy or perhaps some inspiration. Use your imagination and think about what your followers would want from you.
  7. Incorporate a paid ads campaign. Despite what we tend to think, social media is not really a free platform for business.
     
    In order to get the exposure you need to generate solid leads, you need to look at it from a “pay to play” perspective. Invest in Facebook, Twitter, and/or LinkedIn ads, depending on where your ideal clients are hanging out the most.
     
    It wouldn’t hurt to supplement your efforts with Google ads too. Google ads can be extremely effective at driving qualified traffic back to your website.
  8. Create a custom tab on Facebook for your free giveaway. Facebook users don’t like leaving that platform so one way to get people to sign up for your free giveaway is to host a custom tab within your Facebook page that provides the signup ability. Here is ours as an example.
     
    Pagemodo offers a means to do this or you can use Static HTML as well.
  9. Add your list of services to your Facebook page. Facebook recently implemented a new feature on the business page that provides an opportunity to showcase your services. Take advantage of this great feature so your followers know what it is you offer!
     
    Here’s ours as an example.
  10. Use Twitter cards. Twitter cards are a great lead generator that has a call to action embedded right in the tweet.
     
    Once the visually eye-catching and compelling tweet is created,  pin it as a feature tweet to the top of your page. This is prime real estate that twitter followers will see when checking you out.
     
    You can view our Twitter card here.
  11. Use video. Video is where it’s at on the social media scene so take full advantage of the excellent exposure it can bring your business.
     
    You can use video on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and of course YouTube to demonstrate how to use your product, share informative tips and strategies, offer inspiration and words of wisdom to name a few ideas.
  12. Add a call to action to your Facebook page. Your Facebook business page has a great feature located right under your header banner that allows you to add in a call to action.
     
    Ask yourself what you want your followers to do once they have discovered your page? You can choose from several options such as booking a service, getting in touch, learning more, making a purchase or donation or downloading an app or game.
  13. Get engaged with your followers. One of the fundamental strategies you can incorporate into your social media efforts is to get involved and engaged with other people and pages posts.
     
    A great way to get more exposure to your page is to like, comment and share other page posts as your page. Find other pages that share the same target market as you and like those pages as your page (as opposed to your personal profile) and make a daily habit of interacting with those posts.
     
    The more you get engaged with your followers, the more they will be aware of who you are, which will begin to develop the know, like and trust factor with them. The more that happens, the more apt they will be to go check you out and if they need what you’re offering, they will then become a lead for your business.

As you can see, there are lots of ways to take advantage of social media’s powerful lead generation possibilities. The key is to be consistent, be strategic and be patient with you efforts. This process has also helped Southern California Home Buyers in Corona, CA find their dream homes!

The key to social media marketing is to be consistent, strategic and patientClick To Tweet

For more in-depth strategies and assistance with hands-on, step-by-step help, check out my monthly Social Blast program specifically created to help entrepreneurs and small businesses use social media and online marketing to help build their business.

Find out more here: www.socialmediagroupcoaching.com

To your success,

Creating a Video for Your Website to Boost List Building

Today’s eTip is about using video on your website home page to help boost your list building efforts.

Sometimes I’ll see a business or entrepreneur’s website and their video on the home page is either amateurish looking or it’s too much of a commercial.

What you want is something that is personable, friendly and brings out your personality so that you draw people in and compel them to want to watch your video.

You want to make it 1-2 minutes long – nice and short, concise and to the point.

You also want to end it with a call to action to get people to sign up for your free giveaway. This really works well for list building.

Make your home page video short, concise and end with a call to action.Click To Tweet

Stats show that people rarely buy right away when they visit a website so you want to give them a reason to get into your list so you can continue to build the “know, like and trust” relationship with them. By doing that is by getting them to sign up for your free giveaway.

The best way to do that is to share in your welcoming video why they should sign up for it and what kind of benefits they’ll get from it.

Make the video more about your free giveaway and less about you and get people into your list so that you can then nourish them and eventually convert them into clients.

Read further specifics about creating your home page video here.

I’d love to hear what you think – do you have a video on your website home page and if so, does it have the best call to action for list building purposes? Share your response below in the comments section or if you have a question, I’d be happy to answer.

To your success,

P.S. New to online marketing or you find it overwhelming and confusing? Check out Social Blast: eMarketing for Entrepreneurs. It’s a monthly group coaching program for those just starting out or wanting more advanced strategies to help with their online marketing and social media efforts.
CLICK HERE: www.socialblastcoaching.com

About the Author, Susan Friesen

10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum ResultsSusan Friesen is the founder of eVision Media, a boutique web development and Digital Marketing firm of over 15 years that specializes in designing, building and marketing professional, unique websites for entrepreneurs, businesses and organizations.

Visit www.ultimatewebsiteguide.ca and grab your FREE "Ultimate Guide to Improving Your Website's Profitability - 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum Results".

How to Deal With Facebook’s Recent Algorithm Change

Marketing eTip: How to Deal With Facebook's Recent Algorithm Change

Today’s eTip is about Facebook making yet another algorithm change and how that affects your page posts’ visibility.

Facebook has recently announced they have made further changes to their algorithm, which means things are being changed as to what we are seeing on our newsfeed.

What this means for us entrepreneurs and business owners, is the posts we add to our Facebook page does not guarantee any kind of visibility to our followers on their newsfeed.

Even if people have liked your page, it doesn’t mean they will see any of your posts, unfortunately it doesn’t work that way.

Facebook is changing its algorithm again, here's what you need to know to get visibilityClick To Tweet

What we need to do as business owners, is when we post to our business page, the rules of the game is to find posts that people will comment on, like and share.

With this new algorithm change, the most important thing you want to be focusing on is finding and creating content that is shareable. Think about what your followers who have liked your page find interesting enough that they will want to share it to their followers.

So sharing is going to get a boost in how much visibility your posts get. Always think strategically instead of randomly about what you post.

Videos also get great visibility so if you can post something shareable in a video format, you’ve got a home run!

Facebook is changing its algorithms all of the time so what works now might be different six months from now so take advantage of this now while it’s still working in your favour.

I’d love to hear what you think – are you struggling in getting a decent reach with your Facebook page posts or do you get great results? Share your response below in the comments section or if you have a question, I’d be happy to answer.

To your success,

P.S. New to online marketing or you find it overwhelming and confusing? Check out Social Blast: eMarketing for Entrepreneurs. It’s a monthly group coaching program for those just starting out or wanting more advanced strategies to help with their online marketing and social media efforts.
CLICK HERE: www.socialblastcoaching.com

About the Author, Susan Friesen

10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum ResultsSusan Friesen is the founder of eVision Media, a boutique web development and Digital Marketing firm of over 15 years that specializes in designing, building and marketing professional, unique websites for entrepreneurs, businesses and organizations.

Visit www.ultimatewebsiteguide.ca and grab your FREE "Ultimate Guide to Improving Your Website's Profitability - 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum Results".

Secrets to Creating a High Converting Website Home Page

Secrets to Creating a High Converting Website Home Page

We all know first impressions are very important. That’s why, whether you are redesigning your website or building one from scratch, the home page is undoubtedly the most important page of your website.

Your website often offers a first impression to your prospective clients; make it favourable!Click To Tweet

So how do you create a design that is eye-catching, engaging, and draws visitors to take the next step with you?

Here is what to include on a truly effective homepage.

Define Your Target Market

Before you write a single word or jump into designing a snazzy logo you need to identify your target market.

Ask yourself questions like:

  • Do you serve a certain geographic market or do you serve customers nationwide or globally?
  • What key problem do you solve for customers?
  • What age and gender are they?
  • Are they in a certain industry or profession?
  • What income bracket are they in?

Now that you have defined your target market, you can begin planning content and a design that speaks to the needs of your ideal customer.

11 Top Elements of a Highly Effective Home Page

  1. Compelling Headline

    Clearly state what you do, who you do it for, and how you help them. Keep it short and simple.

    Place this prominently near the top of your website.

  2. Welcome Video

    Visitors love video because it helps them get to know you and get a sense of what it’s like working with you.

    In the video, tell viewers your name and the results that clients get from working with you. Then introduce the challenge of why people struggle with the problem you solve.  Next share why you are successful helping people overcome that problem. Then tell visitors who you can help them now in the free offering you are sharing.

    Then call them to action to sign up for your mailing list.

  3. Free Offering

    Generate leads by featuring an opt-in where visitors can get an irresistible free offer such as a special report, audio, or video tip.

    Once someone joins your mailing list, you can send high value tips and information to prospects along with offers and calls to action.

    This helps you to earn a prospect’s business when they are ready to buy.

  4. Text Copy

    The best website copy is simple, direct, and compelling. It’s not only important to describe what you do, but also why what you do matters.

    Prospects want to know about the benefits of buying from you. Reveal why customers should buy from you and not your competition.

  5. Services or Products Highlights

    Aside from getting them into your list, the other primary goal of your website’s home page is to engage customers to dig deeper in your website and move further into your sales funnel.

    For visitors who want to learn more, add teaser text and images that link to your most popular services and product offerings to help visitors decide what they would like to do next.

  6. Social Media Icons

    If a site visitor likes your content and wants to follow you on Twitter or Facebook, they should be able to do that without having to hunt around for the icons or links.

  7. Blog Preview

    Often people want to see what information you have available for free to help with their problem. A blog helps establish your credibility as a thought leader in your industry.

    By posting topics which resonate with your market and show your knowledge, you are marketing your skills for your business, service or product too. Plus, blogs help to deepen the connection with your followers by giving them an opportunity to learn more about you.

    Having the most recent 2-3 blog articles highlighted on the home page not only helps visitors easily find your posts but also gives your website extra SEO juice.

  8. Testimonials

    Sharing words of praise builds credibility with potential customers. They want to know that your product works and creates results.

    Endorsements from satisfied customers build trust so be sure to have a testimonial feature on your home page that links to a page of them.

  9. Credibility Builders

    . Displaying the endorsement of a major media or a top national organization is a powerful reputation builder. If you have been published anywhere or have been on TV or radio, add those logos to your home page.

    For example: “featured on:”, “As seen in:” or “Member of:” located at the footer of your website can build trust and credibility.

  10. Call To Action

    Offer calls to action to visitors at every stage of their website experience. Create calls to actions to learn more about your products and services, review frequently asked questions, start a free trial, sign up, or schedule a free consultation.

  11. Contact information

    Your contact information should be visible on the site. You don’t want visitors to have to hunt for your phone number or email address if they have a question.

    If you run a shopping cart, it’s best to have a customer service phone number located in the top right corner of each page on your site. This will build trust and help with the decision-making process.

  12. Your homepage acts as the face of your company.  It welcomes visitors, builds trust, communicates value, and directs visitors to the next step.

    Hopefully these tips have been helpful to you. If your website is in need of a re-do in order to incorporate these best practices, let me know and we can discuss how your website can be redesigned for better results.

    To your success,

    About the Author, Susan Friesen

    10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum ResultsSusan Friesen is the founder of eVision Media, a boutique web development and Digital Marketing firm of over 15 years that specializes in designing, building and marketing professional, unique websites for entrepreneurs, businesses and organizations.

    Visit www.ultimatewebsiteguide.ca and grab your FREE "Ultimate Guide to Improving Your Website's Profitability - 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum Results".

Boost Your Website eZine Sign-Ups

Boost Your Website eZine Sign-Ups: How to Create a Professional Intro Video Using These 8 Tips and Sample Script

How to Create a Professional Intro Video Using These 8 Tips and Sample Script

Want to engage your audience and grab the attention of your website visitors?

Using an intro video is a great way to accomplish this while introducing yourself to your audience. What better way to begin a relationship and build trust than to speak from your heart in a video and capture the trust of potential customers.

Website intro videos are a great way to boost #eZine signups and build trust.Click To Tweet

If you haven’t considered adding a video to your website home page yet, using video not only helps introduce you or your company to your site visitors, it also helps:

  • Strengthen the “know, like and trust” factor with them. And since people tend to do business with people they know, like and trust, then you’re escalating the purchase process with a video.
  • Gives you and your company a personality. A video can be much more effective at this than just reading text and it helps strengthen your bond with them as well.
  • You to stand out from your competitors. Since home page videos are not mainstream, the chances are great that your competitors have not taken advantage of this excellent form of grabbing the attention of their website visitors.
  • Get more newsletter subscribers into your list. Having your video conclude with this call to action will greatly increase your website signups. (But don’t forget to actually send out those newsletters!)

One of the roadblocks many entrepreneurs and business owners face when considering adding a video is not knowing how to create one. So below are tips on what to say in your video, for recording it, and a sample script you can use as a guideline to get you started.

8 Key Things to Include in Your Intro Video

  • ‘Pain’ question – Pique the attention of your audience by asking a question that identifies their biggest challenge or pain.
  • Who you are – Introduce yourself and your credentials in a concise, memorable way.
  • What you do – Share how specifically you help people with your offerings.
  • Who you help – Identify your ideal clients… the ones you absolutely love to work with and they love working with you.
  • Sign up for newsletter/eZine – Tell them specifically how to sign up for your newsletter. Example: “Enter your name and email to the right and click submit.”
  • What they can expect in your eZine – Let them know what you share in your newsletter. It could be blog articles, videos, exclusive interviews, motivational quotes and more that pertain to your industry.
  • Bonus gift for signing up – It’s a good idea to offer a free giveaway as incentive for people to sign up for your newsletter and this can be done by giving away a free video, audio, special report, or cheat sheet to name a few ideas. You’ll want to emphasize they will be receiving this as soon as they sign up.
  • Final ‘call to action’ – End the video with a personal well wish that shows them you care and you are grateful for their connection. Then conclude with a reminder to enter their name and email address to get their free gift.

Important Tips When Recording Your Video

Now that you have a guideline on what to say for your intro video, it’s time to record it. I recommend finding a local videographer to help you with this part so that your video is presented in a professional manner – after all, you want to give off the best impression to your new website visitors, right?

Regardless if you hire someone to help or do the video yourself, here are some key pointers to be aware of:

  • Practice what you want to say so it comes across naturally and doesn’t sound like you are reading it.
  • Say it with genuine expression and emotion. You’ll want express your personality in a big way to avoid looking dull and boring to the viewer.
  • Smile and let your passion shine through.
  • Make sure you have good lighting and audio. This is very important and can make or break the success of your video. If you’re recording indoors, you need a lot of extra lighting to make the video look normal on screen. I often recommend to my clients to do outdoors and take advantage of the natural lighting found there. Just be sure to have the main lighting source facing you and not behind you.
  • Dress for success. Do your hair,  wear something sharp, and put on makeup if you’re a woman.  All of this will make a great impression.
  • Keep it short. Aim for 2 minutes max. Anything longer than that and you risk losing the attention of your audience.
  • Keep in mind your video is going to be displayed on your website home page so it is not necessary to end it with a graphic asking people to visit your website while providing the URL.
     
    I often see this mistake where people see their video more as a commercial that can be used in other places. If you want to use your video in other places like on Facebook or LinkedIn, then create two of them – one specifically for your website home page and another that is geared to get people to visit your website for more details.

Sample Intro Video Script

Take this script and make it your own!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Would you like to lose weight without dieting? (Pain question)

HI, I am Marie Jones, a Low Carb Dieting nutritionist. (Who you are)

I have worked with thousands of people like you who are tired of starving  themselves with diets that don’t work. (What you do and who you help)

That’s why I am inviting you to join my community to receive helpful tips on how to lose weight the low carb way.

Sign up now – I’ll share powerful teachings to help you drop pounds and inches while eating healthy foods you’ll love. (Call to sign up for eZine)

You’ll receive easy-to-prepare meals with the foods you already have in your home. (What they can expect in your eZine)

Plus, as a special bonus, you’ll receive my ‘Low Carb Shopping List’ as a gift when you sign up! (Bonus gift they get when they sign up)

I look forward to helping you feel great and lose weight with your best body ever. Don’t forget to add your name and email address to the right to get your free gift today! (Call to action / sign off)

Here’s to your health!

Marie Jones

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Ready, Set, Action!

Adding an intro video to your website home page will make an incredible difference on your brand positioning and list building efforts.

If you’d like to record an intro video for your home page but aren’t sure where to start, a marketing professional can help you write a script that’s the perfect fit for your business.

If you don’t have a home page video, what is preventing you from creating one?

To your success,

About the Author, Susan Friesen

10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum ResultsSusan Friesen is the founder of eVision Media, a boutique web development and Digital Marketing firm of over 15 years that specializes in designing, building and marketing professional, unique websites for entrepreneurs, businesses and organizations.

Visit www.ultimatewebsiteguide.ca and grab your FREE "Ultimate Guide to Improving Your Website's Profitability - 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum Results".

This Is The Social Proof You Need to Drive Sales

This Is The Social Proof You Need to Drive Sales

The power of the Internet gives us the ability to connect with thousands of potential buyers and clients around the world.

But in a world where “know, like, and trust” leads to sales, how does one begin to build that rapport with strangers?

The answer is testimonials. 

It’s only natural for prospects to question when we toot our own horn.  But testimonials have the power to dissolve doubt and create credibility.

So what makes a good testimonial and more importantly how do you get them? Keep reading this article and once you’re done, you’ll have a script you can follow to garner effective testimonials from your customers.

But Why Testimonials?

Clients often ask me if they should bother with testimonials. Understandably there is a healthy amount of scepticism surrounding them where they can often not be trusted to be real. Indeed, there are services that will do a testimonial for you for a small fee.

However, I still feel testimonials are an excellent way to build your credibility if done right. What others say is always more powerful than anything you can say about yourself.

Plus prospective buyers seek out the opinions of others before they buy.  That’s one reason for the popularity of online product reviews and sites like YELP.

People love hearing first hand what the experience of trying a product or service is like.  Did it work?  How good was it?  What kind of results did it get? Were you surprised about anything while using it? Would you recommend it to others?

12 Components of a Strong Testimonial

In order to offset the concern that the testimonials you post on your website could be considered fake, here’s 12 tips on creating persuasive (and believable) testimonials:

  1. Keep it Real – A testimonial should be real comments from actual customers about what they thought about their buying experience. Fake testimonials can be spotted a mile away.  Rather than BUILD trust, it can ruin it.
     
    People can sense truth.  So it’s truly important that the testimonial be in the natural language with the original intent of the customer. NEVER hire someone to create a testimonial for you.
  2. OK to Edit – Sometimes a customer can ramble on during a testimonial. It’s OK to edit a testimonial to shorten it and to correct the spelling and grammar as needed.
     
    Just make sure that the final edited piece preserves the core essence the customer intended.  The original conversational flow will create a stronger emotional connection.
  3. Use A Full Name – Including the first and last name always boosts credibility. In cases where more anonymity is needed, first name and last initials can work.  Like Joe S.
  4. Location – Adding the city that a customer is in makes it more believable as well. Especially if it’s for a local service like accounting or legal work.  It helps a prospect to emotionally identify by seeing that individuals near where they live were satisfied with a service.
  5. Add A Photo – Placing a photo next to the testimonial helps prospects put a face to the name. It deepens the emotional connection and credibility with the message of the testimonial.
  6. Use Video – Video testimonials have more impact than written ones BUT only if it’s high quality. Doing video for the sake of video won’t boost your sales.  Video testimonials are more powerful when what is being said is spoken from the heart than if it’s read.
     
    Sometimes it can take two or three takes to get a good one that really nails it. You can consider posting one feature video testimonial and then include several written ones underneath with: “Here’s what more customers had to say”.
  7. Don’t Add Live Links – While it’s ok to list the company name of the person giving the testimonial, don’t include a live hyperlink to their website. Having a clickable link is a distraction and will reduce sales conversions.
  8. Include Both Regular and Expert Testimonials – Prospects do get excited to see big names endorsing a product; however, if you ONLY have celebrity endorsements, it can cause doubt. It creates a question in the customer’s mind if these are “real” endorsements.
     
    While flashy guru testimonials are nice to draw attention, also include several “everyday Joe” kind of testimonials.  People want to see that ordinary people like themselves are getting results too.
  9. Share Specific Results – While comments like “Elaine is an incredible coach” are nice, specific comments that share results achieved are more powerful. For instance if Jane says “working with Elaine as a business coach helped me double my income within 90 days”, it really strikes a chord with potential buyers. 
     
    Use measurable terms like percentage increases, money gained, time saved, pounds lost etc. all within a certain time frame.
  10. Quality Is Better Than Quantity – Sharing 100 testimonials on a product can feel overwhelming and cause someone to lose interest. Instead share a few really compelling testimonials from your biggest champions.
  11. Emphasize The Positive With Formatting – Use bold or italicized keywords that emphasize measurable results. This helps when people are scanning a page to draw their eye to the most persuasive elements of the testimonial.
  12. Kick Doubt To The Curb – Every buyer has objections that must be overcome before making a purchase. Do I need this?  Will it work? Is it worth the cost?  Here’s an example of a testimonial statement that dissolves doubt. “When I first tried “Fitness Magic, I really doubted if it could work for me, but after 30 days I saw 10 lbs come off and it stayed off.  I am a believer!”

How To Get Testimonials

What is the best way to get testimonials?  Just ask!

One of the best times is after a customer makes a purchase.  Amazon.com is an expert at this.  After you make a purchase on their site they ask you immediately what you thought of the item you purchased and include a link to make a review.

However, sometimes when you ask a customer if they could write you a testimonial, it makes them draw a blank.  Instead try asking for feedback;  everyone loves to share their opinions.  Then when you get the feedback, ask if you can use it as a testimonial.  Tell them it will give them free exposure for their business.

Often you’ll get better testimonials if you prompt customers with pre-defined questions that  they can answer and share feedback about.  For instance, here’s a sample of what you might want to send them:

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Thank you for shopping with us.

I was wondering if you could do me a favour by sharing feedback about your experience of using our product/service? All you need to do is quickly answer these questions and send them back to me:

  • What prompted you to try our product?
  • What were you surprised about once you tried it?
  • How was the experience of using it?
  • What specific results did you see as a result of using it?
  • How do you feel about the outcome of using this product?
  • Would you recommend it to others?

Thanks, I appreciate your input.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Naturally, you will need to modify this to suit your business and the type of experience the customer may have had with your product or service.

Testimonials can be one of the most important tools in your marketing arsenal.  You should include them in all your marketing materials from promotional emails to newsletters, product sales pages, brochures, your website, on social media and more.

Let your satisfied customers do the talking for you and you’ll be on the way to greater sales!

Do you use testimonials to help build social credibility?

To your success,

About the Author, Susan Friesen

10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum ResultsSusan Friesen is the founder of eVision Media, a boutique web development and Digital Marketing firm of over 15 years that specializes in designing, building and marketing professional, unique websites for entrepreneurs, businesses and organizations.

Visit www.ultimatewebsiteguide.ca and grab your FREE "Ultimate Guide to Improving Your Website's Profitability - 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum Results".

How the 2015 Facebook Algorithm Changes Affect You: Popular content rules while spam drools

Welcome to Facebook

Is Facebook marketing dead?  Not yet.

While it is certain that the January 2015 Facebook algorithm update will force businesses to change their strategy, there’s still value to be found on Facebook for brands.

While this popular Social Media channel still provides the potential to reach thousands of viewers, the challenge now is how to ensure your Facebook business page content appears in your fan’s news feeds.

Why Facebook made the algorithm change

It seems Facebook hosted a survey a while back and asked users what they could do to improve.  Many users complained about getting too much promotional content in their news feeds. (If you participated in this survey, leave a comment below to share what your take was!)

In response, Facebook implemented an algorithm change effective January 2015.  The goal with this update was to show viewers more of what they want to see and less of what they didn’t want.

What this means to you: The 3 things that are less likely to appear in news feeds now

  1. Posts that solely push people to buy a product or install an app
  2. Posts that push people to enter promotions and sweepstakes with no real context
  3. Posts that reuse the exact same content from ads

What Should Businesses Do Now To Get The Best News Feed Exposure on Facebook?

Here are 7 changes you can make now to boost your exposure due to Facebook’s algorithm changes:

  1. Post videos directly into Facebook. Facebook is favouring videos using their new Facebook video player over ones hosted at YouTube or Instagram.
  2. Lead Facebook readers to subscribe to your newsletter. Since now you can’t promote your products and services as much directly on Facebook, moving fans over to your newsletter will allow you to still share offers to them.
  3. Post tried and true content. Test posts over at other social platforms to see which types of content get the best response. You want to share only the “best of the best” if you have a shot at getting it in the news feed.
  4. Review Facebook Insights. Pay close attention to which types of content gets the best response. Use that as a guide for future posts.  Remember that Facebook is favouring content from businesses who post popular types of content that users like to see.
  5. Use Facebook Ads to ensure that promotional posts get seen. Since organic distribution in the Facebook news feed is decreasing, you should boost Facebook advertising for your business in order to maintain the same levels of engagement.

    However be warned that Facebook penalizes you if you reuse the same ad.  So don’t just repost an old ad.  Instead tweak your ad before posting it.

  6. Keep your eye out on trending topics and stories of the day in the media and other social media topics.  This type of content will rank with high relevancy for Facebook viewers as well.  People can’t resist sharing their thoughts on big news stories.
  7. Engage with your own content and encourage your team to do the same. Leave a comment for your own posts, respond to other’s replies, and like their responses.  Encourage employees, team members, and other close colleagues to do the same.  You may want to form a pact with high profile friends and agree to like/share each other’s content.

Bottom Line: Give fans the best Facebook experience possible.

Facebook users have voted and now the news feed is rewarding them with more of what they want, less of what they don’t.

Smart businesses that listen to their audience and post relevant content will get the highest visibility in the Facebook news feed.

To your success,

P.S. If you want to learn more about Facebook and other Social Media platforms, consider joining our live monthly Social Blast group coaching program where I cover these topics and other eMarketing strategies to help build your business. Learn more here: www.socialblastcoaching.com/

About the Author, Susan Friesen

10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum ResultsSusan Friesen is the founder of eVision Media, a boutique web development and Digital Marketing firm of over 15 years that specializes in designing, building and marketing professional, unique websites for entrepreneurs, businesses and organizations.

Visit www.ultimatewebsiteguide.ca and grab your FREE "Ultimate Guide to Improving Your Website's Profitability - 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum Results".

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Sue