Helping Your Business Grow Traffic, Build Engagement, and Be Everywhere

How to Blog for Big Money

I’ll admit it. I’m frustrated.

Frustrated by the misleading and incorrect advice being given to people asking questions like, Is it really possible to make money from a blog?, Is blogging for money realistic?, yada, yada.

Here are a selection of just some of the replies I’ve seen. The following are taken at random from Quora – but there are multiple posts and other info out there giving similar ‘advice’:

You get the idea.

So this post helps to put the record straight, and shows what’s really possible with real examples and income data. And shows how you can do it too.

In truth, it’s entirely possible to make not just a living, but a high level of income from blogging activities. That includes whether you are:

  • Approaching blogging as a business. In other words, the blog comes first, with income streams – the business part – layered on afterwards.
  • Using a blog to support and multiply profits and income for an existing business

To prove it, I’ll how you 10 real-life examples of people who earn substantial incomes from blogging.

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By |March 17th, 2016|blogging, content marketing|4 Comments

How to Improve Your Email Marketing By Leveraging Content

When I first started online in the early 2000s, if you wanted to communicate (digitally) with your prospects and customers en masse, it was either email, or… well, email.

Facebook wasn’t yet a twinkle in Mark Zuckerberg’s eye; Twitter was even further beyond the digital horizon. WordPress didn’t yet exist – if you wanted to blog, you headed to LiveJournal.

Publishing content on a website often involved a well-worn copy of How to Use HTML (or similar!), and late nights spent figuring out <head> and <body> tags, and everything in between.

Oh yes! I’m almost forgetting the painfully slow dial-up Internet connection that made publishing even the most basic bit of content painfully slow. (Not to mention hogging the phone line while you did it. Fun times!)

Zoom forward to the current day and you can communicate with (and build up tribes of) thousands of people in your market on multiple platforms, and across a multitude of devices. And do so quickly and easily.

Email marketing remains vitally important of course. Through communicating one-to-one directly with a subscriber, it’s one of the most powerful ways to build trust, credibility and a sense of relationship.

It’s also just another such content platform…

Yet many businesses still approach email marketing without any thought to an integrated strategy that more effectively reaches and communicates with their marketplace across multiple platforms, and at the same time creates long-term content assets for their business.

Instead, their approach is disjointed. Each platform, including email, is treated as a completely separate entity, demanding completely different content.

The resulting and unsurprising sense of overwhelm gives way to an either-or mentality that restricts their reach, and even leads to a gradual decline of online visibility.

It’s not their fault. They just emulate what most other businesses seem to be doing. They follow incorrect, or at best incomplete, advice that hasn’t quite caught up with present-day reality.

But it doesn’t have to be like that. There is a solution…

In this post, I’ll share with you:

  • Three common mistakes businesses make with email marketing.
  • How you can leverage content to both resolve these issues, and lead to greater online visibility as a whole. (And the amount gained far exceeds the extra effort involved…)

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Build Your List With Content Upgrades: On Your Blog… And Beyond!

Want a more powerful way to convert visitors to your blog into leads for your business? How about a 300% to 785% improvement in conversion rates?

Welcome to the world of content upgrades…

In brief, it means offering more value to the visitor  – say in the form of a relevant download – in exchange for their email address.

But content upgrades aren’t just for your blog…

Content upgrades also work when integrated into content published on other platforms across the web.

In fact, thanks to the often higher engagement levels you get on these other content platforms, this can be even more effective. Yet few if any are really doing this right now…

I’ll share more on this below! But first…

Here’s quick summary of what you’ll learn here:

  • What content upgrades are: What they are and how they benefit you (it’s not just for list building there are some other advantages I can practically guarantee you won’t be aware of)…
  • The results to expect: I’ll share some of my own results, as well as those from other business owners (some of these you’ll find surprising)…
  • How to create content upgrade bonuses: Some examples of bonuses you can offer as content upgrades, and vital things to think about when creating them so they bring you maximum advantage, even after someone has opted in your list…
  • The mechanics: How to actually implement them on your blog – and on other content around the web – including how to deliver the content upgrades to new opt-ins. I’ll cover some easy ways to get you started… and, for the more advanced, not so easy (but more powerful!).
  • Ramping up results: What you need to do long-term to optimize your results from content upgrades. (Do this right, and you could double or even triple their effectiveness.)

Comprehensive? I’d say so…

Let’s dive straight in.

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How To Blog On Medium (And Why Your Business Should!)

As any regular reader of this blog will know, I’m a big believer that you should be regularly publishing content across multiple platforms. It’s the most effective way to reach your marketplace, grow your traffic and build your online visibility for all sorts of reasons.

(Yes, your business now needs to “Be Everywhere“!)

Such content platforms include LinkedIn Pulse, SlideShare and YouTube, not to mention all the main social networks.

There’s another biggie to add to the list, and that’s the Medium blogging platform. It’s one of the most popular online sites, attracting millions of visitors, and has hundreds of thousands of users.

For your business, it’s another key content portal from where you can start to attract increasing amounts of traffic and leads over time. As I’ll show you, it’s an interesting mix between an intuitive, easy to use blogging platform and some of the viral power of social media.

In this ultimate guide to using Medium for your business, you’ll learn:

  • What Medium is and how it works.
  • How to publish content on the platform.
  • 15 top tips for using Medium effectively for business purposes (including a quick download you can use for your future reference).

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How I Grew My Traffic From Organic Search By 1,465% In 12 Months

Today you’ll learn how I grew the amount of traffic I attract from organic search from just 52 visitors 12 months ago, to 814 visitors clicking through from the SERPs last month. That’s an increase of 1,465% within the space of a year – or nearly 16 times the amount of traffic.

I didn’t do anything particularly spectacular or out of the ordinary. I just created content on a regular basis, and the results are exactly what should happen. As I’ll show you, this growth was based on publishing a new blog post just once a week. (Mostly, anyway!)

If anything, the traffic growth could have been a lot more. As I’ll show you, for the first three months my publishing schedule was in fact just one post a month!

And even once I moved to once a week, the odd week was missed here and there. In the end, we’re actually talking just 35 new posts over the 12 month period. But the result is that the blog now attracts hundreds of new visitors every month through the search engines, and that will only continue to climb.

Had I published the full 52 posts for a year’s worth of weekly publishing – a full third more posts – my traffic may have been a third higher too, nearly 1,100 a month from search.

So in this post I’ll show you:

  • The exact stats, how they’ve grown over the course of the past 12 months, and how that relates to the growing number of posts I’ve published. I also show you what they looked like for around a year and a half before that, along with some analysis of each stage, so you get the full picture.
  • How to harness that traffic, as it grows, for business purposes. There’s little point attracting traffic for traffic’s sake.
  • How the content created for your blog isn’t just for your blog. Find out how you can leverage it for a wide range of marketing activities.

And I wrap up up with five key takeaways you can apply to your own business.

Don’t Want To Read? View As A SlideShare Or Video

But first, a quick proviso…

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Ultimate Guide To Social Meta Tags: Open Graph And Twitter Cards

By adding some simple social meta tags to your website or blog, you can improve how your content is displayed on social networks like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Google+. This improves your visibility and increases your traffic by making your updates more appealing for both clicks and shares.

After all, when you use the right image, descriptive text, and so on for a sponsored update on social, you can improve engagement (including click-throughs) by often 100s of percent.

The same principle applies for organic updates – normal, every day, run-of-the-mill updates on social – and social meta tags are how you control exactly what’s shown, including:

  • The title
  • The description
  • The image

As a quick example of the difference this can make, here’s what would show on Twitter for someone sharing the blog’s url (http://blog.vwriter.com) before I made use of the right tags:

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The 3-Step Way To Repurpose Your Blog Post As A Quality YouTube Video (And Get Your Business On The World’s Top 3 Websites!)

If you could do just one thing to get your business more visibility on the web’s top 3 websites, would you do it?

I’m talking of course about video, the growth of which is just exploding due to factors such as easier and faster mobile video access, widespread tablet usage, and videos playing directly within Facebook and Twitter feeds.

Creating a single video allows you to build more visibility for your business not just on YouTube, but also Google, Facebook, Twitter, and numerous other sites.

Most business owners consider getting rankings on Google as vitally important for their businesses.

But what about the second largest search engine, YouTube, processing more than 3 billion searches a month, and bigger than Bing, Yahoo, Ask and AOL combined (see the infographic)?

Unless you’re creating videos on a regular basis so you can be found on YouTube, you’re otherwise invisible on the third biggest site in the world. That’s a significant marketing black hole.

And then there’s Google Video Search, videos shown in their main Web Search listings, and engaging audiences with autoplay videos on Facebook and Twitter.

In other words, video is now crucial for your overall online visibility, and building up an online presence for your business. It’s a large slice of the marketing pie.

The difficulty for most businesses of course is in creating those videos so they can get a piece of the action.

But what if there was a straightforward, relatively easy way to create videos for your business on a regular basis, based on your existing content?

This would allow you to start taking full advantage of YouTube, and start attracting a bigger slice of your marketplace to your business.

Sound good?…

This post shows you how…

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By |January 22nd, 2016|content marketing|2 Comments

“My Customers Aren’t On Facebook And Twitter!” – Here’s Why Your Business Still Should Be…

An interesting email came in from a customer a few weeks back stating that Facebook and Twitter simply weren’t relevant to their business.

They were in a specific niche selling products and services B2B within a specific geographical location. Their client base, which they had an intimate knowledge of (of course, vitally important), certainly didn’t use either social platform either personally or professionally. It wouldn’t even be on their radar.

Unusual? With over one and a half billion monthly active users worldwide on Facebook alone, yes. But general stats are just that – general. It’s always smart to know your own market in fine-tuned, specific detail.

Instead, the best way for them to reach potential customers was through search (Google) and video (YouTube), backed up by a presence on LinkedIn because they were B2B.

Smart. They know their market. And as they saw it, Facebook and Twitter were completely irrelevant.

But, smart as they are, is that really the case?

Would Facebook and Twitter actually still hold value for them as a business?

In fact, this post shows that even if you’re not reaching your marketplace directly through Facebook and/or Twitter, there are still important benefits to be had.

Rather than ignoring these platforms (even if your customers do!), your business should still strive to build up a following and a presence on them. While you might not use them to reach clients directly, they can certainly help indirectly.

Here’s 3 main reasons why…
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How To Repurpose Your Blog Post As A SlideShare Presentation (And Get More Online Visibility, Authority and Traffic!)

According to ComScore, SlideShare is one of the top 100 most popular, most visited websites in the world. The best bit is you can siphon off some of this traffic – over 70 million visitors a month – and direct it to your own website.

Because of the nature of the content it hosts – presentations – and thanks to the fact it’s owned by LinkedIn, the traffic it sends is also some of the highest quality (a.k.a. easier to convert to leads and sales).

There’s also very little competition. Very few businesses are taking advantage of this. The door’s wide open.

Want some?

The good news is it’s easy to start taking advantage of SlideShare on a regular basis. Rather than starting from scratch each time and wondering what to create a presentation about, systemize it.

Each time you publish a blog post, repurpose it as a presentation for SlideShare. This post shows you how to do just that.

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By |January 8th, 2016|content marketing|1 Comment

6 New Year’s Resolutions For Content Marketing Success

At this time of year it is of course customary to think about the 12 months ahead of us, to set goals and to resolve to adopt new and positive habits to help achieve them.

That goes for business too (it’s not all weight loss and fitness!). So with content marketing now crucial to even stay in the game, I wanted to share 6 key New Year’s Resolutions to help you achieve success with your content marketing in the coming 12 months.

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By |December 29th, 2015|content marketing, social media|1 Comment