How to Start a Freelance Business When You’re Broke

Are you a broke mom, frantically searching for legitimate ways to earn money online? Learn how to start a freelance writing business (and grow it) without any money to spare.

If you’re struggling financially today, I want you to know that I understand! I know how it feels to be so broke you can’t just “give up your daily latte” to save money to make a purchase you want.

And I know it can get better. You are not stuck in broke mode forever. You can pull yourself out. I’ve done it and so can you.

Freelance writing changed my life! Four years after starting, we became completely debt free and I officially replaced my teacher salary – without having to spend anything on daycare, or putting in 8 hours a day.

Being broke isn’t fun! When I left the classroom a few years ago, our income took a massive cut.

Well below the poverty line, we struggled to make ends meet. We slashed our expenses and watched ever penny. It was hard!

We knew something had to change, but I didn’t want to go back to teaching because day care for our large family would eat up my entire pay check. Literally.

Since working outside the home wasn’t a viable option, so I started looking into ways to earn money from home, praying that the Lord would help me avoid scams and find something legit.

And not long after, He answered!

Freelance Writing

I stumbled upon a post written by Gina Horkey, and learned that people were getting paid to write content for the web.

I’d been blogging for fun over on my Maggie’s Milk blog, so the wheels in my brain started turning. Could I really earn money writing online?

I started reading all the free material on freelancing that I could. After scouring the job boards, I sent my first pitch within a couple of days.

I got the gig!

It didn’t pay well (only $20), but that money made me realize that I could do this. I could help our household financially, without having to give up on homeschooling or put the kids in daycare.

That first gig back in 2015 was my first baby step into the world of freelance writing. And the money has been coming in ever since. And not just in $20 increments…

If you’re ready to work hard to improve your family’s situation, keep reading.

I dish out all the steps I took to launch my freelance business, without spending any of our household budget.

Are you ready? Let’s get started!

1. Decide to Act

Until you decide that it’s time to actually start your freelance business, no amount of reading, learning, or thinking will count.

You can take course after course and never actually earn any money if you don’t implement anything. You have to do something!

Make a proclamation that you are going to do this. Commit to spend time each day growing your business.

Because if you don’t decide to act, you’ll probably still be broke a few months down the road.

Action truly is key to getting this done. Stop planning. Don’t wait until you “know everything.” Actually do something.

2. Start Small

Do you know what I had for my business when I launched?

A cheap laptop computer, really slow satellite internet, and a freebie blog over on Blogger.

I didn’t have a dedicated freelance website, or money to start one.

Freelance writing courses were on my “someday” list, but I couldn’t afford to purchase any at the time. There was literally no money for that.

And it could have been the excuse I used to never get started. But I decided not to. I just started with what I had.

There is nothing wrong with starting small. 

You don’t need a lot to make it as a freelance writer. Too often, I hear excuses like these:

  • “I don’t have a website.”
  • “No one knows who I am.”
  • “I don’t know where to go to look for gigs.”

You know what? I didn’t either! My online presence (other than my freebie blog) was extremely limited. I didn’t even have a personal Facebook profile or other social media presence prior to launching!

And while perhaps my progress has been slower compared to others who started with more, I didn’t take time to stop and make comparisons.

I started small, with what I had, leveraging my skills.

So once you’ve decided to start a business, take stock of what you have. That’s all you need to get started.

No internet? Go someplace with Wi-Fi.

No computer? Our library has several, and I live in the middle of nowhere, so I’m pretty sure yours will too.

Stop making excuses and find a way to make it happen. It will be hard. But, it will get easier if you keep taking these steps.

3. Start Pitching & Build Your Portfolio

Remember how I said my first paid gig was for $20. That was for a 1200 word post.

Today, I charge at least $120 for the same length. Big difference.

But, when I was first starting I didn’t have the luxury of being picky. I needed money and samples.

So if you’re broke and just starting out, take what you can. Remember you won’t be at that rate forever!

Start getting your name out there, and pitch away!

No matter what you are being paid, always do your best work! Seriously, I don’t care if you’re getting less than a penny a word. If you agreed to write a post for a rate, do it to the very best of your ability.

Wondering where to pitch? Check out these ideas:

Craigslist – the “Gigs” section. Check the big cities (New York, LA, etc.)

ProBlogger Job Board (free, and where I found my first gig!)

You can also create an account on a site like Hubstaff Talent and look for clients who may be a good fit.

Also, here’s a more in-depth post on how to find freelance writing gigs.

Worried about being scammed?

There are scams out there, hiding as legitimate freelance writing gigs. Most are very obvious. Others are more carefully constructed.

The good news? There are almost always red flags. I wrote a post warning you what to look for:

Read this: Red Flags for Freelance Writing Gigs

How to Write a Freelance Writing Pitch

The goal of a freelance writing pitch is to briefly explain why you’re the best person to create the content the company is looking for. You need to show that you’re knowledgeable about the content area, and able to write well.

Here is a sample pitch template you can use. You’ll notice it’s short. Hiring managers get tons of responses. Be kind to them by succinctly sharing the info they need and don’t bog them down with details.

Hi [insert the name of the editor – AN ACTUAL NAME (you may need to research],

Your ad/posting on [site where you learned about it] caught my eye. I’m a freelance writer who knows a lot about [topic/niche.]  I’m also [share two quick reasons you’d be a great fit, using the language/word choice from the ad].

To help you make your hiring decision, here’s a bit more information about myself:

  • [two bullet points sharing quick connections between your education/background/experience and the role]
  • [one connection to the company – i.e. a shared value or mission]
  • [Link to your portfolio]

Please let me know if you need any additional information. I’m looking forward to working with you.

Sincerely,

[Your Name]

How to Build Your Freelance Writing Portfolio

When you’re just start your freelance writing business, you probably don’t have a lot of samples created that you can use to build a portfolio. That means sample writing must be high on your prioritized to-do list.

Here are three quick ideas for how to get published samples:

  • Write a guest post for a blogger in the niche you’re hoping to write for
  • Start a free blog (better than nothing and you can move later)
  • Write on Medium (or a similar platform)

Once you have live samples, you need to collect the links in a sharable format. If you don’t have a website of your own yet, you can:

  • Make a shareable Google Doc
  • Create a Pinterest board and save all of your posts to it (this means you’ll need to create a pinnable image for each post, but you can do that for free on Canva or something similar)
  • Build a portfolio on a platform like Contently

Right now, don’t worry about making your portfolio “perfect.” You want it sharable and you want each link to lead to a great piece of writing. That’s it.

You can (and should) update it later.

4. Reinvest in Your Business

Look, I know how tempting it is to go spend that money you just earned. You’re broke, and really could use the money on X,Y, or Z.

But you can’t.

At least, not right now.

First, you have to invest in your business. Otherwise you’ll be stuck writing $20 posts forever. And no one wants to be there.

So save all of your money (at first!)

When you’ve saved enough, take an entry-level course to learn even more. My first freelancing investment was 30 Days or Less to Freelance Writing Success (aff. link).

The course helped me learn:

  • How to improve my pitch
  • Ways to leverage my past experience and education as a freelancer
  • Confidence in my ability
  • And loads more

I’ve never regretted investing in this course, and have easily made back WAY more than I spent.

But until you’re there, don’t give up on improving yourself.

Keep reading all the free material you can. Subscribe to helpful blogs and read about areas you’re struggling with.

Remember to implement what you’re learning too! Keep saving, and then you’ll be able to take a course.

The course I took gave me the confidence I needed to pitch more. I landed a higher paying job on Craigslist in the education niche, which was perfect with my teaching background.

I took that money, and bought my domain and hosting. This website was born in September of 2015, just a few months after starting my business.

It really does take some money to grow your business, but you don’t have to have that money all at once. So keep working on your savings and you will get there!

5. Slowly Scale Back on What You Save

Once I had more knowledge and a functioning website (it doesn’t have to be perfect!), it was time to start taking some of my business income and applying it to the household budget.

Being able to actually do something with this money was motivating.

When you’re saving everything to get your site up, or purchase a course, it’s really hard. The tangible benefit isn’t there to the same extent.

My first step back was to save 50% of my income for my business and pour 50% of it into the household budget.

After investing in a few more essentials, I reduced that percentage to 25%. But, I ended up spending the money I saved for taxes (oops!) so I’m back up to 35%.

Note: You really do need a budget for your business!

6. Watch for Amazing Deals

I’ve learned the hard way that you really do have to invest in your business to keep growing. So now I’m always watching for amazing deals that align with my freelance writing goals.

I’ve subscribed to several “waiting lists” to be notified of any flash sales for courses I particularly want to take.

Pay attention to the amazing bundle deals that become available, and sign up to be notified. Then tuck some funds away so when they appear you can make the purchase guilt-free.

Watch for Black Friday sales. Often companies will have Anniversary sales as well.

If you find something you want, have patience and try to get it at the lowest price possible.

7. Make Time to Grow Your Freelance Writing Business

Wondering how you’ll make time to grow a freelance writing business from home? You’ll have to make it a priority.

And you need to do it as a team. Your family won’t understand why you’re suddenly spending more time on the computer unless you tell them. So get your family onboard!

8. Continue Pitching to Avoid Freelance Famine

Once you’ve landed a client or two, it can be easy to forget to pitch. After all, you’ve got more client work to keep you busy.

But, eventually that gig might dry up. Then you’ll be left without that income.

So make pitching a permanent part of your game plan, at least for the foreseeable future. Otherwise, you’ll be right back to where you started with no money.

Pitch even if you are busy. Not every pitch will land a client, but it will help you gain confidence. And some of them will give you work!

Freelance famine is a roller coaster cycle you don’t want to get started with!

There are so many ways to find time, even if it means getting a bit creative.

You can do a lot with a part-time freelance business, so don’t let a lack of 40 hours a week stop you8. Continue Pitching to Avoid Freelance Famine

Once you’ve landed a client or two, it can be easy to forget to pitch. After all, you’ve got more client work to keep you busy.

But, eventually that gig might dry up. Then you’ll be left without that income.

So make pitching a permanent part of your game plan, at least for the foreseeable future. Otherwise, you’ll be right back to where you started with no money.

Pitch even if you are busy. Not every pitch will land a client, but it will help you gain confidence. And some of them will give you work!

Freelance famine is a roller coaster cycle you don’t want to get started with!

9. Make Connections

Do you know where most of my leads come from now?

From other freelancers.

That’s part of the reason I love the mastermind group I was a part of for a couple of years. I’ve also gotten leads from different Facebook groups.

Take time to make connections and build genuine relationships. Give more than you take, and be willing to help others. You won’t regret it. Or at least, I haven’t!

Other freelancers are not your enemy! Learn all you can from them and help them out too. Be genuine and patient!

Here’s a post giving you ideas on how to network with others, even as a busy mom without much time.

10. Be Willing to Try Something New

I never planned on being a virtual assistant when I launched my freelance writing business.

But, the door opened and I walked through it. Now I have a couple of VA clients, and I personally love the variety!

I also didn’t plan on this website turning into a monetized blog. But, that just made sense as a logical step on my online business journey.

So as you’re working, don’t get so focused on what you’re doing that you completely miss a good opportunity. Say yes to new things when you can, because you never know where they’ll lead.

Don’t be afraid to pivot if it makes sense.

On the other hand, don’t get so focused on chasing the next “new thing” that you forget about what is currently working. There’s a balance. You’ll have to figure out what that looks like for you.

11. Don’t Give Up

Bootstrapping your freelance business is challenging. But, it’s also rewarding, and can help you move past broke.

Don’t give up when things get tough. You can do this!

Take time to think about your why. Why did you start a business in the first place? When you think about your why, it’s motivating.

Here’s more inspiration when you’re feeling like you’re ready to quit:

What to Do When You’re Ready to Quit Your Online Business

How to Start a Freelance Writing Business: Recap

Starting a freelance writing business doesn’t require a lot of capital. In fact, if you already have a computer and internet access, you can get started today.

Remember to save your money, and invest it back into yourself. Watch for deals so you can still save money while investing! 😀

Be willing to work for less at first, because you won’t be at that rate forever.

Find a community and get involved.

And when you’re ready to take an awesome course on freelance writing, I highly recommend Gina’s 30 Days or Less to Freelance Writing Success!

By: Lisa Turner

Lisa Tanner loves helping busy moms find time to grow their own business. As a homeschooling mom to nine, she knows a thing or two about balancing diapers and deadlines.

Source: How to Start a Freelance Business When You’re Broke – Lisa Tanner Writing

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Related Contents:

Why Conscious Branding Is the Secret to Your Success

Today, more consumers than ever are demanding that companies become transparent and take  hands-on approach to making the world a better place. They’re looking for what experts call “,” companies that embody a higher purpose by having an intentional purpose or embracing . Think: Tom’s Shoes or ’s Honest Company.

According to a report by MWWPR, not only do 90% of consumers say they’re more likely to patronize companies that take a stand on social and public policy matters, 80% say they’ll even pay more for products from such brands.

But you don’t have to be a big name in order to transform your into a conscious brand. Follow these three steps to make sure that your actions resonate with your ideal customers, helping you multiply your revenue and make a lasting impact.

1. Be clear about what you stand for

Ben & Jerry’s is an iconic conscious brand. Climate justice, LGBTQ quality and Black Lives Matter are only a few of the socially responsible causes the company has advocated for over the years. And it only makes people love their brand even more.

As people become savvier, trust in is growing more vital each day. It’s not enough to just offer a great product or excellent customer service. Customers want to do business with companies they like, trust and align with.  Those brands that sit on the sidelines regarding important issues are coming under greater scrutiny. Meanwhile, those with the guts to take bold but strategically sound stands are being rewarded.

Follow B&J’s lead and include your views and values in your marketing. Share your beliefs, and ask your audience to take part alongside you in supporting the causes you believe in. By intentionally integrating social responsibility as part of your daily business routine, you can ensure you are doing your part in practicing social and environmental responsibility and be seen as a thought leader in your niche.

Related: In 2021, Consumers Are Looking for Something Extra From Luxury Brands

2. Take action

It’s one thing to talk about the causes you support, but it’s another thing entirely to actually do something about them. People are jaded by outdated marketing techniques,  and businesses and influencers who don’t walk the walk. While building and running a conscious business requires more intentional and an uncompromising commitment to the mission for good, the reward is the creation of a movement that leads to unparalleled success and impact.

is a noted leader in environmental and social responsibility. Their mission statement reflects this well: “Build the best product, cause no unnecessary harm, use business to inspire and implement solutions to the environmental crisis.” From supporting grassroots activists working to find solutions to the environmental crisis to suing the former president of the United States, Patagonia has taken action on the most pressing environmental issues facing our world.

There are countless ways you can become part of the change for good: collect donations, offer scholarships, take part in . Use the resources you have — your voice, your business and your community — to take action. When you weave these actions into your company culture, and it’s embodied by employees and customers alike, you create a movement. By embracing ethical business practices while creating transparency and accountability, and providing immense value, your brand will rise up over the competition.

3. Cultivate partnerships based on values

Co-branding with another company is an effective way to double the awareness around an issue, increase the impact of an effort and, ultimately, expand the visibility of both organizations. Who you partner with has a direct impact on your reputation, your bran and your potential customer’s perception of your business.

As reported in a recent Hubspot post by Sophia Bernazzani, “In 2015, Target partnered with on a campaign called Kid Power, which committed Target to one of UNICEF’s sustainable development goals (SDGs). The retailer sold kid-friendly fitness trackers encouraging them to complete various fitness activities, which ultimately helped deliver food packets to underprivileged children around the world.”

To ensure that you’re making smart partnering decisions, choose partnerships that align with your values. If you have not yet determined your brand values, make it a top priority. The best way to do this is to follow my 3S Method. First: Source. Do a Google search of “brand value words.” Choose as many words as possible that you resonate with and feel are important.

I like to put them on index cards (or you could use digital Kanban boards) to make step two easier.  Second: Sort. Group the index cards with similar words. For instance, honesty, integrity and truth would go in the same pile. Finally: Select. Choose your final words from the groups by what you feel best represents your deepest values.

Related: Only Conscious Brands Will Survive The 2020s

Now, use these brand values as your North Star. Refer to them any time you are making decisions, such as who to partner with, who to hire, which clients to work with and more. Doing so is sure to help you stand out amongst the noise online and attract raving fans with similar values.

Tiffany Neuman

 

By: Tiffany Neuman / Entrepreneur Leadership Network Writer

Source: Why Conscious Branding Is the Secret to Your Success

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How Brand Management Impacts Your Negotiations

Study Reveals Instagram Reels Better For Brands, TikTok Better For Influencers

Social Media Logos

There are so many different ways for influencers and brands to use social media to connect with audiences. Some might say too many. Instagram alone offers a dizzying mix of platform extensions, from static posts to IG Stories to to IGTV to Guides and more. And since August, 2020, the company has added Reels to the mix in an attempt to compete with the meteoric rise of TikTok.

Bite-sized videos with useful how-tos, relatable memes and viral dances are clearly here to stay, so should you throw your weight behind the tried and true Instagram and invest time and resources into Reels, or should you stay hip and focus on the new kid on the block? Well, that depends on who you are.

Markerly, an influencer marketing agency, recently analyzed posts from 80 influencers and 10 brands on both TikTok and Instagram and found Reels is currently the best place for brands, whereas TikTok remains Queen of influencer and celebrity culture. According to the study, celebrities and influencers received almost double the likes and engagement on TikTok as compared to Reels. Meanwhile, brands such as the NBA demonstrated that the same post on TikTok received over 63K likes versus 425K on Reels.

“When looking at brands, Reels received higher engagements and we speculate that’s due to the presences they’ve established and cultivated for significantly longer than on TikTok,” said Justin Kline, co-founder of Markerly. “TikTok made its name on authentic, fun and creative content led by real people, so it’s no surprise that individual users still win out against brands on the app — TikTokers come to see dance challenges, songs and pranks, not overtly branded content.”

A Good Influence: How Influencers Are Pivoting To Social Good Campaigns

One could argue that users don’t go to any social media platform to see overtly branded content, but we’re much more accepting of it on Instagram. Aside from the audience sizes on each platform, the demographics of users count for something here. Most TikTok users are Gen Z, with the largest age bracket being 10 to 19-year-olds. This is a generation that’s grown up with influencer culture, so it makes sense that it would engage more with individuals rather than big brands. The largest age demographic of Instagram users, on the other hand, is 25 to 34 — Millennials who still remember the days of having to watch impersonal commercials in between episodes of Friends and Will and Grace.

It’s also far easier and more authentic for an individual influencer to jump on the viral dance and challenge trend than it is for a brand. For example, a Christmas-themed Justin Bieber post shared across both platforms garnered 8.9M likes on TikTok, while on Reels it received 4.8M.

So should influencers keep to TikTok and brands to Reels?

Absolutely not. Kline said almost all posts are worth cross-posting.

“If you want your message to really resonate and the content and format itself is suitable for another platform, you need to get it in front of a potential customer as many times as possible, and cross-posting is an easy way to do that if it’s done effectively,” said Kline.

Even though the design and format of Reels, which was basically just cloned from TikTok, is better for influencers, it provides anyone with the tools to make really creative, eye-catching content. And as Kline pointed out, now more than ever, audiences expect far more from brands than the standard ads and spon-con. We want them to entertain us and engage in the broader discourse.

“Not only will this improve your brand visibility over time and open up opportunities to receive honest feedback on your products and strategies, but a well-timed and witty customer response, meme or reaction can go viral, boosting your brand to the top of everyone’s minds,” said Kline.

Brands need to think strategically about how to use influencers

TikTok and Reels have similar algorithms and user interfaces, but TikTok’s community allows for more rapid and viral sharing. It’s still the ideal venue for making an effective impact with branded content and influencer campaigns, said Kline. So a brand that wants to build its presence on TikTok would do well to find celebrities and influencers to work with on the platform for promotion.

That said, Reels is still very important for brands because it has the advantage of being built on Instagram, which means a stronger presence from brand pages and a captive audience that’s perhaps more inclined to engage with Reels rather than download a new app.

“Whenever possible, brands should customize messaging and posts to best fit the platform, medium and audience found there,” said Kline. “Influencers who are experts on each platform are great resources to help with these efforts.”

Follow me on Twitter. Check out my website.

I write about social media, innovation, technology, cities and culture.

 

Source: Study Reveals Instagram Reels Better For Brands, TikTok Better For Influencers

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Content Ideas For INSTAGRAM REELS – How to Use Reels for Business // Steal these 10 Reel ideas to boost your visibility and grow your business on Instagram. In this video, you’ll discover content ideas for Instagram Reels, Instagram Reels for business, Instagram Reels strategy, Instagram Reels tutorial, and how to use Reels for business. 🔔 Subscribe for more! ➡️ http://bit.ly/elisedarmaYT 🎥 Get caught up on ALL my free Instagram training videos ➡️ http://bit.ly/IGplaylist GET ✅ Reels Vault: 300 INSTAGRAM REELS IDEAS for business ➡️ http://ReelsVault.co/ GET ✅ Story Vault: 800 INSTAGRAM STORY PROMPTS + IDEAS for business ➡️ https://StoryVault.co 🎥 How To Use INSTAGRAM REELS – Instagram Reels Tutorial: https://youtu.be/GQb0XMG9E0M 🎥 Instagram REELS for Business: https://youtu.be/o2h7vDaD9mI ______ MY GOODIES: 🎬 300 INSTAGRAM REELS IDEAS for business: 🎬 http://ReelsVault.co/ 📲 800 INSTAGRAM STORY PROMPTS + IDEAS for business: 📲 https://StoryVault.co 🚀 FREE INSTAGRAM TRAINING for business owners: 🚀 http://FreeInstaCourse.com For all the behind-the-scenes of my business, make sure to follow my Instagram Stories over @EliseDarma ➡️ https://www.instagram.com/elisedarma/ For all my Instagram tips and hacks, head to ➡️ https://elisedarma.com _____ BUSINESS TOOLS I RECOMMEND: #️⃣ Speed Up Your Hashtag Research: https://elisedarma.com/flick 📂 Get Organized With Asana: https://elisedarma.com/asana ✍️ Master Copywriting with my friend Jamie Jensen https://elisedarma.com/copy 🍎 Host Your Online Course With Teachable: https://elisedarma.com/teachable 👯‍♀️ Host Your Online Programs With MemberVault: https://elisedarma.com/membervault 💌 Grow Your Email List With ConvertKit: https://elisedarma.com/convertkit 🌪️ Build A Sales Funnel With ClickFunnels: https://elisedarma.com/clickfunnels 📞 Get Calls Booked In With Acuity: https://elisedarma.com/acuity 🔴 Go Live With Ecamm: https://elisedarma.com/ecamm 💰 Invoice Your Clients With Freshbooks: http://shrsl.com/?erti 💡 Learn New Skills With Skillshare: https://elisedarma.com/skillshare
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How Brands Can Better & Effectively Use Influencers

https://miro.medium.com/max/1200/0*uPEXSSv59uAYEmc7

Influencer marketing isn’t as simple as choosing an influencer with a high number of followers to post an ad for you. In 2019, there have been a multitude of changes that have taken place in the influencer marketing world which brands need to factor into their strategies to get the most ROI.Consumer expectations around authenticity, an increase in influencers making it harder to reach their target market, and the need for solid evidence of the success of a campaign or post are the key trends we’re seeing shape the changes this year.

Below is a list of things to remember before engaging an influencer for your brand, to ensure the highest success rate.

  1. Influencers are people too

It’s clear that brands need to identify an influencer that suits their image and has an audience appropriate to them, as it’s obvious it’s not a ‘one size fits all’ approach.

Think of the basic advertising and marketing principles such as brand consistency across its messaging, imagery, stunts etc. All of these principles also apply when it comes to selecting influencers.

For effective market penetration in the influencer space, brands need to change the way they see influencers. It can feel a little strange at first because we’re so used to having our own perception of them through a screen, but brands need to challenge themselves and stop being transactional and start building genuine relationships.

Doing this, not only will your brand foster beneficial relationships for future activity, but the synchronicity between the influencer, brand and audience is the key driver to the most genuine engagement and success of the campaign.

Of course, there is always the irony when it comes to using influencers since brands pay for influencers to post an ad, so it can be perceived as anything but genuine. Therefore, it is important to be mindful that influencer marketing is actually a partnership and when working together, both reputations are on the line.

2. Video is the new black

Like all key moments in pop culture, trends come and go but some stick so well that they stay popular through the generations. The 20s had smoking and flapper dresses, the 60s had the flare pants and tie-dye, the 80s had the boombox and the 90s had the blackberry.

In 2019’s digital climate, the legacy that millennials and Gen Zs have left is the ubiquitous use of social media. This demographic has propelled the amount of user-generated content full of memes, live streaming of stories and videos, which is why video is currently on trend.

Since 90% of Gen Z and 83% of millennials are spending at least two or three hours a day watching videos on their smartphones, brands need to capitalise on creating fun video content and memes that can be easily shared with their peers as it resonates well with this generation more than any other form of media.

3. Authenticity is key

When followers feel like influencers are real people they can relate to and even share similar experiences with, that’s when the magic happens. The most successful influencers have a highly captivated audience because of their ability to produce authentic and relatable content.

Since millennials and Gen Z’s are digital natives to social media and advertising across these platforms, they are naturally more switched on when it comes to recognising when they are being overtly marketed to.

According to a study by Deloitte, 72% of millennials use social media as a good way to stay connected to news and topics that are important to them, while 65% of millennials said that they are happy to receive targeted content if it aligns with their interests – proving they are savvy when it comes to their consuming of digital content.

If businesses want to engage an influencer to market to this demographic, they need to be mindful about content that’s not consistent with the influencer’s audience and brand.

Brands need to change their thinking to view their relationships with influencers as adding a ‘human element’ to their marketing approach, as opposed to looking to influencer marketing as another means to just sell their products.

4. Data is king

Influencer marketing has always been seen as an enigma, with traditional marketers often questioning whether it can yield actual commercial results.

The reality of it is that it can. One of the best examples is homegrown company Hi-Smile. Founders Nik Mirkovic and Alex Tomic started the company with $20,000 of their own savings using solely influencer marketing, which then grew the company into a $40M business with over 100,000 customers across the globe in just three years.

Measuring ROI and using data to track the success of a campaign is important, not just because you can say with authority that investing the marketing budget into the influencer space was a wise move, but so you can optimise your campaigns.

Influencer marketing is still relatively new and there’s a huge potential to lead the market.

5. Talking to Gen Z

By next year, Gen Z’s are expected to account for about 40 percent of all consumers, not to mention social media has become one of the key driving forces for this generation to purchase products, accounting for 80% of purchases.

Instagram (44%), Snapchat (21%) and YouTube (32%) are the core outlets making the biggest impact in this space and influence everything from purchasing decisions, lifestyle choices and even political perspectives.

After almost a decade of focusing on millennials and Gen Y, brands that haven’t started factoring Gen Z into their strategies are shooting themselves in the foot.

Given Gen Z’s have an attention span of about 8 seconds, capturing their attention requires authentic and engaging content that they can contribute to, interact with, or be a part of. They want to feel like they are part of an actual community attached to authentic causes.

Despite the digital landscape’s challenges, there’s an opportunity for brands and businesses to market to consumers in a more flexible way to adapt to this new digital era. With so many opportunities for brands to utilise this generation of social media lovers to their benefit, remember the five key tips to ensure success and tap into a savvy, yet highly engaged type of audience.


Nathan Ruff is the co-founder and CEO of Hoozu, a data driven content creation business that uses creators and content to convert sales for its clients. Nathan has a wealth of specialist knowledge across industry trends, managing risk and ensuring accountability in a relatively unregulated space. He has also successfully founded five companies, including Market Engine, Urban Geek Media and VOLT Media. Nathan has been instrumental in helping to disrupt the influencer marketing industry and bringing accountability to the discipline.

Source: How brands can better and effectively use influencers – Dynamic Business

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7 Costly Mistakes That Can Be Avoided By Brand Research

Branding strategies can make or break an organization. There’s a lot that goes into developing a successful brand, and the best companies around the world put substantial time and effort into brand development and image. Creating a successful brand requires time and research commitment and is an ongoing strategy that can yield amazing results.

However, small businesses at the start of their inception can potentially create crucial branding mistakes during their initial stages of development that costs them a lot of customers, money, and time. Even major brands make big branding mistakes, like Nintendo’s Virtual Boy and Amazon’s Fire Phone.

Brand research services for positioning strategies, brand mapping, and perceptual mapping can help you, whether you’re a small business or a long-time market player, to avoid pitfalls and the costly mistakes of failed brand positioning.

Common Branding Mistakes by New Businesses and Entrepreneurs

Do you remember Nintendo’s Virtual Boy in 1995? You might not because it’s one of Nintendo’s biggest failures in the history of the company. It didn’t offer what it promised, a true VR experience, resulting in incredibly low sales and quick removal from the market. What about Amazon’s Fire Phone in 2014? It only lasted one year because of its limited availability and features that didn’t resonate with audiences. Even major companies like Nintendo and Amazon have to be careful about product or service branding that can tarnish their reputation and result in massive profit loss.

Even small branding mistakes can cost a company. Not only will your efforts and time spent towards planning to be lost, but you will have cost your business a lot of money and even potentially tarnish your reputation permanently, which can be completely devastating for the longevity of a brand.

Below are seven mistakes that you can avoid when it comes to brand positioning so that you learn more about them and avoid them altogether:

  1. Lack of Competitor Research
    You have to learn about your competitors if you want to be successful. How do they position their brand? What types of products and services do they offer? How are they perceived in their respective industry? How are they succeeding? Do you have a potential opportunity in the market where they do not? You don’t want to identically replicate your competitor’s strategies. But you do have to learn everything there is to know about the successes and failures of your competitors so that you know how to uniquely position yourself in the market.
  2. Brand Messaging Doesn’t Suit Target Audience If you can’t develop a brand message that fits with your target audience, nobody is going to buy from you. You have to learn everything about your target audience like demographics, what they like to buy, where they shop, what times of the day or times of the year do they make purchases related to your offerings, what colors motivate and drive them to make purchases, what parts of the world are they located, how does culture affect purchasing, and many more.
  3. Failed Market Study
    Effective market research needs to be obtained about how people are reacting to your brand, products, or services. Survey analysis can be obtained to further your market research and understanding, or a complex study of social media research and analysis can help you to understand how people review or perceive you in the market. If you don’t analyze feedback from your customer base, you will be making a costly mistake in your brand research initiatives.
  4. Association or Dissociation with Events and Motives Just because you want to create a product or service or build your brand around a particular design or niche space in the market, doesn’t mean it will be successful. You can’t just build and sell tablets just because iPad’s are popular, create a bottled water company because you feel people will always need to drink water, or design makeup and cosmetics because there is a popular trend in that space this year. You have to delve deeply into your brand research strategy to truly understand the reasoning behind purchasing decisions and product and service popularity.
  5. Inconsistent Corporate Identity Everything about your brand identity has to make sense, from the colors that you choose to represent your company, to the logo and fonts that you use throughout your campaigns, to the style of writing, tone and messaging that you implement to speak to and reach audiences. Everything has to remain consistent so that people understand your brand values and what you are offering them. If you fail, you could spend a lot of time rebranding and causing confusion to your audience and miss a lot of opportunities.
  6. Poor Product Packaging

    Product packaging is the first thing people see when looking at your brand, whether they are online or physically in store locations. Everything from materials, graphics, size, shape, and color all are important elements of packaging designs. You could spend a lot of money rebranding your packaging if your product performs poorly. On the other hand, you might spend money rebranding your packaging when it isn’t even necessary and have to revert back to the way it was. Effective brand research is going to help you understand the best elements and packaging designs that will help your company thrive.
  7. Making the Wrong Impression If you are selling premium services, you don’t want to use commodity branding. You will deter audiences from your brand. There is a reason why so many fast food restaurant chains use the colors red and yellow, like Burger King, MacDonald’s, Wendy’s, and Carl’s Jr., and software companies use blue and black like Intel, IBM, Apple, or Google. People associate certain attributes to particular products and designs. People won’t understand what you are offering them if you make the wrong impression. Pay particular attention to detail and use the right research and analysis to make a lasting impression that makes sense with audiences.

How Brand Research Can Help

Brand marketing research is integral to the success of organizations in the modern world. In fact, no business out there that is successful in today’s market leaves home without brand research.

Brand research improves your competitiveness, visibility, and messaging and can help your business take a strategic position in the market using proven data from effective research and analysis services. Here are some of the major benefits of effective brand research:

  • Integrated Metrics: You can see the impacts of your project decisions and forecasts with measurable and tangible results.
  • Allocate Market Spend: Understand how to make investments that will lead to successful outcomes.
  • Identify Competition: You can not only find out who your competition is, but you can find out how and why they are successful in the market, or even discover how to position your brand in areas where your competition is lacking.
  • Develop Accurate Strategies: Create informed decisions built on a foundation of research and analytics with a better understanding of market developments, pricing, and positioning.
  • Capture Target Audience: Better understand consumer behavior and create effective marketing and advertising strategies.
  • Brand Perception: Truly understand how audiences feel and react to your brand, products and services.

Effective Brand Research for Organizations Across Industries

Research Optimus (ROP) has top research and analyst specialists who are tenured in market research, business research, customer analysis, and brand research services that provide the required insights to take the appropriate steps towards building effective and long lasting business brand awareness, brand marketing, and positioning strategies. Apart from services like market research, product research, and risk analysis, contact our team today to jump start or further advance your journey into brand research and obtain the targeted insights you need to avoid branding mistakes.

By: https://www.researchoptimus.com/

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Decision Analyst

An introduction to brand strategy, and the tangible and intangible elements that make up a brand. And a brief discussion of the questions of to ask in order to focus and improve your brand strategy. Learn More: https://www.decisionanalyst.com/servi…

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More Contents:

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Will the Rise of European Remote Work Lead to a Boom in Omnichannel Marketing?

With news of a Covid-19 vaccine bringing hope worldwide for an eventual end to the pandemic that’s left a trail of destruction across 2020, many workers are eager to continue working remotely. With a recent McKinsey & Company study suggesting that one-third of Europe’s major economies could continue their remote work, it may be time for marketers to consider their omnichannel marketing approach. 

While some bosses may be reluctant to allow their employees to work from home (WFH) when it becomes safe to return to office commutes, research indicates that many employers are seeing improvements in the productivity of staff while they WFH.

Major European economies have seen significant rises in remote work as Covid became increasingly prevalent. The UK, Germany, France and Spain were among the global leaders when it came to WFH, with potentially as much as 46 percent of workers going remote.

According to Harvard Business Review, the vast majority of countries that display the ideal infrastructure to facilitate WFH come from northern and western Europe, indicating that there’s plenty of potential for workers to continue operating remotely across the continent. 

Shifts away from high streets and brick and mortar stores to spend more time at home means that businesses will be looking to appeal more to audiences through the various digital platforms that they use. Omnichannel marketing, of course, aims to make the shopping experiences from online to mobile to over the phone to in-person as seamless as possible.

In an era that’s driven by digital engagement, we may soon see a boom in omnichannel marketing. But how will marketers look to use omnichannel to reach their consumers?

Marketing during the rise of remote work.

Remote work across Europe looks set to continue as the world transitions into the “new normal” period of recovery following the virus. Due to the development of remote technology and communications, this trend may never reverse. 

According to the European Employer Covid-19 survey Report, nearly 70 percent of European employers plan to continue remote work for employees unless their jobs require them to be in the workplace. While 80 percent of respondents are requiring or considering to recruit more employees to WFH. 

Respondents say that they’re considering these shifts to achieve more productivity (41 percent), address the difficulty and price of introducing new safety measures (38 percent) and to allow for the closure of offices (25 percent). This may mean that the future of office spaces may change from a place to get work done to a place to meet for performance reviews and client discussions. 

The implications of closing offices and fewer opportunities for workers to leave the house will have huge ramifications for other industries, and marketers will need to adapt quickly to the rise of remote work by creating better engagement opportunities for users within the places they’re most likely to consume their media. 

Let’s take a deeper look into how omnichannel marketing methods can help businesses to reach more potential customers at home:

Understanding the changing journeys of customers.

The first thing marketers will need to understand to adapt their post-pandemic campaigns is how customer journeys are shifting. 

Where traditional journeys revolved heavily around physical store visits and platform-based eCommerce, Deloitte notes that this pattern is moving towards a ‘life on the cloud’ diversity of co-existing models, with fully integrated eCommerce, social media, live-streaming, influencers, vertically-integrated platforms, official brand websites and private traffic. 

Significantly, the reach of marketers looks set to change to focus heavily on social media, digital entertainment and eCommerce platform campaigns.

While pop-up stores had been a popular way of engaging audiences over the past decade, the pandemic appears to have forced marketers to adapt to more digital platforms to continue to find customers. 

Understand where your audience is

It’s vital to gain an insightful view of your customers to gain a full picture of what they like and don’t like — as well as their purchasing habits, preferences, and how they behave across all channels. This data can help you to create a more enhanced customer experience.

By collecting and analyzing relevant customer data, a brand can establish the personality of their target audience which helps them to use the right tools and technology at the right time in the buying cycle. It’s also important for businesses to test out their buying experience offered through the eyes of their customers. This can help to make the experience seamless, more user-friendly and free of any barriers.

Different businesses have customers who behave differently online. While customer behaviour tools like BrandWatch and Heap can provide strong insights into who your audience really is, a strong level of customer research can still be conducted manually. 

By learning more about the social networks your customers use and the type of entertainment platforms they use, it’s much easier to build campaigns to not only suit their tastes but also to appear where they’re most likely to see them. 

Reapproach your content.

Like with all campaigns, your content will be the foundation of your omnichannel efforts. You can begin by surveying your existing content to collect assets that align with the needs and interests of your target audience at different phases of the buyer’s journey. Here, it’s important to remember that the best content always attracts, informs and engages your audience while still promoting your brand. 

Be sure to adjust the format and presentation of your content to fit the context of each channel that you’re working in. Each piece of content needs to stay relevant to the channel it appears in while maintaining a consistent experience across channels. This will help to smooth out the experience for users across channels and devices.

Despite the need for adapting your content across channels to suit their respective audiences, it’s still worth repurposing content from its core message and meaning across all the channels you operate in. This process isn’t too time-consuming, and condensing ebooks into whitepapers or taking infographics from webinars can help to generate significant traffic for existing work. 

The necessity of digital analysis.

Because of the significance of shifting your marketing operations towards omnichannel campaigns, it’s vital that you track your progress using analytics to help you recover quickly if setbacks occur. 

Platforms like Google Analytics and Finteza are effective ways of keeping track of how traffic arrives and interacts with your pages. If some channels are creating lower volumes of visits, it’s important to reconsider your approach, or the type of content you’re creating, or even checking whether you really do have as large of an audience to connect with via this form of marketing

Covid may have caused widespread disruption to a range of industries across the world, but in remote work creating more digital audiences for businesses to connect with, there may be an opportunity for marketers to create more effective and adaptable campaigns that can spread further across channels and reach larger volumes of people. 

With more research, multifaceted content, and time taken to analyse progress, businesses could yet turn their shortcomings from the pandemic into a significant opportunity for the future.

Dmytro Spilka

By: Dmytro Spilka Entrepreneur Leadership Network VIP CEO and Founder of Solvid and Pridicto

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Professor Wolters

Omnichannel marketing is the ubiquitous nature of today’s marketing. Marketers need to be on all platforms as they never know when customers will be looking for information on products and services. #marketing#omnichannel#principlesofmarketing​ Topic 4: Digital & Social Media Marketing YouTube Advice Playlist: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list…​ Help Support Marketing & YouTube education and become a Patron at http://www.patreon.com/woltersworld​ Grab some of the gear we use to film our Professor Wolters videos. Grab one of Professor Wolters shirts or other merchandise at http://www.woltersworld.store​ Microsoft Surface: We travel with a Microsoft Surface everywhere we go. I edit my videos on it & use it to backup my pictures and vides while we travel. It’s light and the best travel laptop on the market in my opinion. https://amzn.to/2L55pDR​ Lights: Mount Dog 18’ Ring Light Kit. It will light up your filming space so your videos will look clearer and film better. We started using it and it makes all the difference. https://amzn.to/2YEIQ0J​ Sony Alpha Camera: We use Sony Alpha series cameras to film our videos. They are compact so you don’t look like a super tourist when you take great pictures and videos while you film on location. https://amzn.to/2WbTNFH​ Manfrotto Tripod: We use Manfrotto Tripods. They are compact, travel well, and honestly I would not use another tripod for my nice cameras. https://amzn.to/35AWqUs​ Follow Us at: http://www.facebook.com/professorwoltershttp://www.instagram.com/professorwol…http://www.professorwolters.com

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Prioritizing Your Inbound Marketing Strategies for 2021

Marketing is a continually evolving landscape. You know this. We know this. But 2020 presented a different challenge than previous years, leaving marketers to dig deep into what they need to do to attract and nurture leads and customers.

2021 will be no different – which shouldn’t make you panic! Part of marketing is doing your due diligence, and we’ve combined resources to come up with some powerful strategies to consider prioritizing in 2021.

SMS Marketing

The popularity of SMS was already accelerating pre-COVID, but the pandemic made the importance of quick, timely, relevant messages more necessary than ever. People needed fast updates on everything, from closures to switches to remote learning. And SMS marketing provided that, plus an average 98% read rate.

SMS marketing is also useful for both leads and customers in non-COVID-related campaigns, as you can implement various campaigns that are engaging to both audiences. For example, for current customers, you can send them text reminders of appointments or meetings. For leads, you may consider sending them branding awareness campaigns or coupons that may encourage them to buy from you.

The best part? With a platform like SMSZap, getting started with SMS marketing is a breeze. You can set up your account in a few minutes, link up with your contacts in HubSpot, and send personalized and engaging messages.

Content Marketing

COVID restrictions sent most people home at one point – to shop or work, or both. This made the demand for digital consumption skyrocket. What does that mean for your efforts in 2021? Your content needs to be high-caliber and plentiful, as well as:

  • Interactive
  • Emphatic
  • Engaging
  • Relevant to current events (2020 saw everything from social change, major elections, and COVID)
  • Made for the diverse crowds

That translates to creating and sharing educational, quality content about your products, services, and your company to your prospects and customers. You can use various resources like blogs, ebooks, infographics, social media, and videos to deliver your messages. No matter what type of content it is, it should address your target audiences’ specific pain points at every stage of their buyer’s journey, including the awareness, consideration, decision, and delight stages.

Video

Video can technically be considered a part of your content marketing – but its importance in our “new normal” isn’t something to shrug your shoulders. People longed for some human connection that they couldn’t get in person. Think about how you can use video in your previously “typical” marketing efforts. Are you switching to more online conferences, events, or webinars? These remote types of content are not going anywhere soon.

Similarly, video is just proven to be a useful tactic. In fact, 79% of consumers reported that a brand’s video convinced them to buy a piece of software or an app. A whopping 92% of those viewers also said they shared videos with others. That alone should help you realize the value of investing in video creation and distribution.

Chatbots and Customer Support Automation

When COVID initially hit, people scrambled to cancel flights, hotels, concerts, trips, appointments; you name it. The importance of a quick and solid customer support experience was integral. But customers weren’t the only ones dealing with the consequences of such an uncertain year. Support agents were hit with an influx of tickets to their helpdesk. Fortunately, chatbots and other customer support automation helped and will continue to in 2021.

Chatbots automate specific tasks and conversations by speaking with a customer or prospect through an easy-to-use interface. They lighten your teams’ workloads by tackling more straightforward conversational functions that are necessary but can eat up time. Advanced customer service automation can offload a large portion of support tickets with a high degree of accuracy. These resources also delight users because more and more people want information as quickly as possible and don’t mind speaking over a chat application.

Social Media

2020 certainly had a prevailing theme, and it was that a lot of people were at home for a good portion of it. Because of this, more people were also on their phones searching for news and updates from their favorite brands. One of the most common places to find this is generally a company’s Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, or LinkedIn.

Brands recognized this too. In fact, social media budgets accounted for 24% of all marketing budgets during the second quarter of 2020. And the momentum kept. There’s tremendous opportunity to ride these coattails and continue engaging and re-engaging with new and existing customers through fun, engaging social media campaigns or advertising.

SEO

When the pandemic subsides, businesses with brick and mortar locations will likely want to send as many people as possible back into their stores. Local search engine optimization (SEO) can help. Try:

  • Optimizing your “Google My Business Page”
  • Including local keywords throughout your website content
  • Strengthening your social media presence and including location-specific content

Position Zero, or Google’s featured snippet, should also take precedence in 2021. As humans become more reliant on technology, they expect the best answer as fast as possible. Position Zero has the most relevant information that answers that user’s question without clicking on any link. Some advice on getting a featured snippet includes:

  • Figure out what your company can get a snippet for
  • Writing out the exact question you’re trying to answer in your website or blog content
  • Use lists or tables
  • Research related questions and answers – any question can lead to another!
  • Create high-quality content that isn’t stuffed with keywords .

Another vital thing to consider when tackling SEO is to remember that people are searching for things differently now. People are asking more questions or phrases rather than just words. They’re also using devices like Alexa or Google Home. Search engines recognize this more nuanced context, meaning, and intent to deliver results, so keep it in mind for 2021. 

By: Kelly Groover

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Clwyd Probert

https://www.whitehat-seo.co.uk/ This presentation was made my Karen Rafferty from HubSpot as part of a seminar at the London HubSpot User Group in London. This video will show you the best tips for implementing a great inbound marketing strategy. You can download the free eBook here: https://info.whitehat-seo.co.uk/tips-… The full transcript of the video can be found here: https://blog.whitehat-seo.co.uk/inbou… Slides can be downloaded here: https://info.whitehat-seo.co.uk/londo… A summary article covering the main points is available here: https://blog.whitehat-seo.co.uk/tips-… We propose is to start to deploy a strategy to both your sales and marketing activities in your business.

It’s important just to reiterate here that with inbound marketing what we’re essentially doing is trying to focus on attracting good fit leads or opportunities for your business. And we do that through producing meaningful content that can enable you to have meaningful interactions with potential customers. It’s about just having good social etiquette. I’m, it’s not about interrupting people, it’s about actually being helpful, being responsive. Being very human in the way that you employ your marketing and your sales strategy. Which of the strategy from the video works best for you in 2018. Let me know by leaving a quick comment below. Details of the next London HUG event #LondonHUG can be found here: https://www.whitehat-seo.co.uk/hubspo…

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4 Ways to Stop Attracting People Who Can’t Afford Your Services

There’s nothing worse for an entrepreneur than putting all your efforts into building a service, and a marketing strategy, only to continuously attract people who say they can’t afford them. 

While many business owners focus their attention on making sure they have built an apparent “fool-proof” plan to bring people in, they can still stumble into an audience that isn’t right for them. This can be frustrating because people don’t understand why, even though they are good at what they do, prospects aren’t buying or, worse yet, they are asking for discounts on everything.

The good news is that there is a way to stop attracting those who can’t afford your services and shift your attention and marketing efforts to bring in people who are ready to buy. It all boils down to having and implementing a brand strategy that deeply resonates with your target audience and allows you to show up authentically every single time.

1. Get clear on who you do want to attract

For your business to be successful and start attracting the right people, you need to begin by understanding who your ideal customers are at a granular level. The more effective you are at connecting with the right audience and speaking to their problems and needs, the more sales you will make. 

Getting extremely clear on who your ideal customers are requires going beyond demographics to truly understand the psychological and emotional elements that are impacting their lives, which will, in turn, determine their purchasing decisions. 

The more you understand your audience, the more effective your messaging will be because you will have the capacity to speak directly to them, and they will finally feel seen and heard. Pricing becomes less important when they see you as the best solution to the specific problem or need that they have. 

For example, it’s not nearly as impactful or effective to say that you are selling a program for women who want to lose weight, which is hugely generalized, than to say that you help busy women over 40 who are frustrated after trying low-carb, high-fat fad diets without lasting results lose weight.  Not only is the latter version a lot more detailed, but it also speaks to a very specific pain point which means that these women will feel an immediate sense of recognition and understanding.

2. Stop undercharging for your services

Many entrepreneurs undercharge for their services because they believe they need to build a robust reputation or have a large audience before they can charge premium prices. 

However, in practice, lowering your prices may end up hurting your reputation in the first place. If you’re building an audience based on people who are looking for a cheaper solution then it will be very difficult for you to make sales once you raise your prices.

If you want to start attracting clients who can afford your services as an online coach or consultant, you need to start charging the right price instead. Trying to sell a service by being the cheapest option out there is going to be a race straight to the bottom. After all, there will always be someone with a lower price in the market.

Instead, you want to set your price based on the value you deliver. To make this calculation, first determine what the outcome of the results you help to generate is worth. 

3. Position yourself as an authority

Attracting the right people also comes down to being able to effectively position yourself as an authority or leader in your field by creating a powerful brand strategy that will allow you to be intentional with your marketing.

Building an effective brand strategy requires having absolute clarity around who you are, what you stand for and the complete experience that comes from being in contact with your business.

It is fundamental to have a well-defined brand message that clearly communicates your value by showcasing the actual outcome that you help your clients achieve. What you have to ask yourself as a business owner is “what am I really selling?” because I can assure you that it is much more than the service you are giving them. It is truly about the transformation, the outcome and the results they are getting because of hiring you. 

Focus your brand communication on them and not on you. Many service providers make the mistake of simply saying things like “I am a web designer” or “I am a fitness coach” as a way to explain to others the kind of service that they provide. When doing this, they are focusing on themselves instead of on the needs of their audience.

Instead, you want to change your messaging to reflect the result you help others achieve. For example, saying things like “I build websites that increase conversions” or “I help women lose those stubborn 10 lbs” is more specific to the outcomes you deliver.

4. True brand differentiation

While it is true that it seems like market saturation is at its peak, in reality,  this is only an illusion. 

The real problem isn’t that there are too many providers and competitors in an industry, it’s that most entrepreneurs don’t know how to effectively differentiate themselves from others.

To attract the right audience, it’s vital that you position your offer as the best solution and ideal vehicle prospects need to achieve success.  One of the best ways to do this is by creating a framework, methodology, or process that is unique to your business, a signature system that distinguishes you and sets you apart from the rest. 

On top of this, according to the theory proposed by George A. Akerlof, winner of the 2001 Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences, and Rachel E. Kranton, professor of Economics at Duke University, in their Identity Economics book, people make economic decisions based not just on financial incentives, but also on their identity.

This matters to you as an entrepreneur because if you want to attract the right people, you need to effectively differentiate yourself from others while standing for something in the process. Today’s consumers are making more and more decisions based on their identities and how others’ identities shape their own. What this means is that when faced with many different options, we tend to choose the one that reinforces our beliefs the most.

If you, as a brand, aren’t doing an excellent job at clearly and succinctly communicating who you are, then you are making it way too difficult for the right people to choose you.

Putting the pieces together

Ultimately, attracting the right people comes down to making sure you are being highly intentional with your message and the way this message comes across. This allows you to transform your audience’s perception of you while bringing in the right people into your business. Taking the time to craft your complete brand strategy will allow you to get more effective results with your marketing plan as well. 

Fabi Paolini Entrepreneur Leadership Network Writer

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Skillopedia – Skills for the real world

How To Attract The Right People For Personal Development & Growth | Soft Skills & Self Improvement Training | Skillopedia #softskills#selfimprovement#personalitydevelopment Researchers and personality analysts say that your personality is a combination of people you interact and spend most of the time with. Yes, it’s true. It’s imperative to surround yourself with the right people for your own self-improvement and personal growth. Now, that might make you wonder how should I attract the right people in my social and professional network? Where do I find them? Some people perfectly do that, they have the right people in their life who motivate and inspire them from time to time. This self improvement and soft skills training video would help you exactly achieve that goal. Learn the steps to invite, not good, but the right people into your life for your own personality development. You are watching this video on Skillopedia, part of Let’s Talk Institute for Personality Development and self improvement. We have hundreds of videos to develop good communication skills, interpersonal skills, personal growth, motivation skills, inspirational tips to develop self-confidence. A complete soft skills training catalogue to help you stay ahead in this competitive world. Skillopedia is a well known name in the corporate training segment in Mumbai to deliver best personality development courses for corporate employees and individuals. To watch such interesting videos and read the complete transcript of this video, visit – http://www.learnex.in/ ============================================= Our Social Media – 👉Facebook – @skillopediaone http://www.facebook.com/skillopediaone 👉Instagram – @letstalkpodcast http://www.instagram.com/letstalkpodcast 👉Follow us on Twitter – http://www.twitter.com/letstalkone ============================================= Our other Channels you would ❤️ 👉Learn English as a secondary language http://www.youtube.com/letstalk 👉Learn English through Hindi – https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCtAr… 👉Learn a new English word daily – http://www.youtube.com/letstalkpodcast Some other Skillopedia sessions you might have missed :- 👉Public Speaking Tips To Overcome Stage Fear https://youtu.be/4-R1EHKmano 👉 How to AWKWARD SILENCE in a conversation? https://youtu.be/CDflqsRwUis 👉What to do when people Shout or Yell at you? https://youtu.be/cR_fjOtNqNo 👉8 Morning Habits To Kick-Start everyday. https://youtu.be/BQQ3I6ztO-A 👉The art of saying – I don’t give a DAMN! https://youtu.be/Hwkavu-F9r0 👉Communication Skills Training – How To Avoid Awkward Silence? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CDflq… 👉How To React When People Shout At You? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cR_fj… 👉6 Phrases That May Sound Rude. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Uv48j… 👉Start A Conversation ANYWHERE, ANYTIME https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xPxaU… 👉How to be a SMART MOUTH? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-fXja… 👉How to attract people like a magnet? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UYxn9… 👉How to sound more confident when you are not? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yJtcV… 👉Why People Misunderstand You? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lcW9f..

5 Main Reasons for Targeting Long-Tail Keywords on Blog Posts

SEO professionals have known about the potential of long-tail keywords for some time now. Those who are good at what they do use them to drive traffic to their website and the websites of their clients. They also use them to increase leads and conversions.

In other words, it is possible to get real SEO results from long-tail keywords – results that are long-lasting and that can deliver for your business.

Plus, long-tail keywords are not the preserve of SEO professionals. There is nothing mysterious or particularly challenging about developing a strategy that targets long-tail keywords on your blog posts.

However, the reasons for doing so, and the results you can achieve, are compelling.

Easier to Get Good Rankings on Long-Tail Keywords

Long-tail keywords are longer and more specific than standard keywords.

While it is true that standard keywords often have a higher number of monthly searches, most keywords typed into Google are long-tail keywords. This is because people are used to searching with a phrase, plus they have confidence in Google’s increasing ability to understand what they are asking.

These are reasons in themselves to target long-tail keywords on blog posts, but there is an even more important one – as there is less competition, it is easier to rank for long-tail keywords than it is to rank for short and single-word keywords. 

Furthermore, the longer and more specific the keyword, the easier it will be to get a good ranking.

As Long-Tail Keywords Are More Specific, They Have a Higher Conversion Value

In general, people use long-tail keywords as they get closer to a buying decision. After all, long-tail keywords often indicate a search that is narrowing as a potential customer moves from broad research to focus on the specific product or service they want to buy.

This results in better conversion rates.

You Can Beat the Competition, Including Big Competition

Trying to rank for competitive keywords, particularly against big competition, is an unrewarding uphill battle. Long-tail keywords provide you with an alternative solution.

So, instead of trying to compete on popular single-word or short phrases, you instead focus on blog topics that target long-tail keywords, i.e., keywords your competition is not necessarily targeting.

Even if your competitors have content on a long-tail keyword you want to target, it might still be possible to improve your rankings if you can create a better blog post. So, it’s a worthwhile strategy.

Long-Tail Keywords Provide You with New Blog Topics

One of the big challenges when writing regular blog posts is coming up with new topics. Long-tail keywords provide a solution.

In fact, using long-tail keywords is one of the fastest methods you can use to generate new blog topic ideas. For example, you can look at your Google Analytics search data and any other data that shows you the keywords used by the people looking for your business, services, or products. The long-tail keywords in this list are a starting point for multiple blog topic ideas.

The above method of finding new blog ideas also increases the relevancy of your blog posts, as you will be writing about topics that people are searching for.

Give Google More Context on Your Overall Website

Website context is a hot topic among SEO professionals at the moment as Google gets better at understanding search intent. Google’s ability to understand context is also making previously beneficial SEO strategies less effective. Therefore, the focus is increasingly on giving Google as much context as possible.

There are lots of ways you can do this, but one of the most effective is by targeting long-tail keywords in your blog posts.

When you target long-tail keywords, there will be content on your site that will show the extent of your expertise and the range of services that you offer. It is difficult to achieve the same level of context if your blog topics are more narrowly focused.

Why is this beneficial, though? Firstly, your website will appear on the search results pages of more keywords when Google understands the context of your pages and overall site.

In addition, Google’s enhanced understanding of your site can result in improvements in the rankings of other pages, including for single-word keywords and short keywords.

Final Thoughts

If traffic from Google is important to your business, you need an effective SEO strategy. You can transform your strategy by targeting long-tail keywords on your blog posts. By doing so, you will rank in high positions for keywords that have a good conversion rate. You will also get ahead of your competition for many search phrases, and you will improve the overall position of your website in Google.

Add all this together, and you get an improved return on investment on your SEO strategy.

As a result, it makes sense to target long-tail keywords on your blogs.

Source: axadra

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Isi Dixon

Even though relevant content is king when it comes to Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) these days, keywords are still very important. People use them to find you. They are what people type in when they search for your content. You need to make sure these people find your blog posts. Here is the blog post I’m talking about in the video: http://www.wellorganised.org/the-impo… If you would like some help with setting up your business blog, why not download my free 10 Step Guide. You can find it here: http://www.wellorganised.org/10-step-… For more information about Well Organised Marketing, please visit my website http://www.wellorganised.org If you are looking for tips and advice on business blogging you can either visit my Facebook page http://www.facebook.com/WellOrganised… or read some articles on my blog http://www.wellorganised.org/blog .

Market Alignment With Segmentation and Differentiation

This is the second in an exclusive series of articles from Total Alignment authors Riaz Khadem and Linda Khadem titled “The Alignment Factor.” Check back in every Thursday for new installments. 

Businesses small and large are being impacted by the pandemic, and entrepreneurs are not immune. In order to survive and prosper during these difficult times, it might be necessary to reinvest in your business concept and redesign your offerings.

As a successful entrepreneur, you have been aligned with your market, but are you still aligned? Do your customers need the same things as before, with the same mode of delivery? For example, imagine a previously successful restaurant that has lost its customers during the pandemic. Does the owner truly understand the current needs of his customers beyond the menu it used to offer or the ambiance it had created before? 

Related: The Alignment Factor’: The Keys to Internal Alignment

What Is Market Segmentation?

In a nutshell, it’s grouping heterogenous people into homogeneous groups, or segments, by some criteria related to their needs. By defining a segment and focusing on the needs of that segment, and aligning products or services with those needs, you have taken steps toward market alignment. The key characteristics of a market segment could be similar customer needs or preferences. In a company with multiple locations, a segment will likely account for geography, demography and choices people make, the type of services they value and the quality they expect. In a smaller company, it could be a subset of these criteria.

Let’s look again at restaurants. Assuming the wearing of masks is a pretty universal requirement, the first pressing issue for owners is how to proceed over the next few months. Should the restaurant continue to offer inside dining? If so, how do you protect the customers? Usually, this is met by distancing the tables farther apart, requiring the servers to wear masks and hopefully the kitchen staff to wear masks and gloves. But what about the substantial number of people who now want to-go meals? Should they be forced to walk into a restaurant where people are eating (obviously without masks) to pick up the food? Or, more conveniently, can the restaurant offer to bring the food to the car? What about payment? Does the customer need to enter the dining room and present his credit card? Or can they pay over the phone or on the website when ordering?

These issues are not unsolvable, yet many restaurants seem unable to adapt. Perhaps it is a rigidity in the way the owners see their establishments and an unwillingness to re-evaluate the new needs of the market segment they were serving. It’s crucial to re-evaluate your customers and perhaps re-segment your market in line with the new reality. Otherwise, precious resources can be wasted on activities that are no longer in alignment. Flexibility and creativity at this juncture can mean the difference between success and failure.

What Is Differentiation?

After re-defining your market segments, you will have to identify what is important to customers in a segment likely to buy your product. Value drivers could be cost, quality, features, safety, buying experience, after-sale support, etc. In a restaurant, they could include the cost of items on the menu, the quality of the food (e.g. organic or not; using meat and poultry and sea food from sources that care for the animals well in a healthy environment), the variety in the menu, safety in the process of acquiring the food and eating, the restaurant experience and treatment received after the service is completed.

For each segment, evaluate the importance to the customers of each appropriatevalue driver on a scale of low to medium to high. For example, quality might be high for a segment while cost is a medium. Safety could be high, and follow-up support could be low. The evaluation should be based on data, not just opinion. You may need to use customer surveys to hear the voice of the customer.

Next, evaluate the same value drivers in terms of how your offering is different from your competitors. For example, is the quality you offer significantly better than your competitors? Is the cost you offer substantially lower than your competitors? Are the features you offer unique to you and unavailable to the customer from other suppliers? As you evaluate your value drivers, you can assign a low, medium or high rating to each. For example, if your value driver is features, and you offer unique features no one else is providing, your differentiation would be high. If everyone offers the same features, then your differentiation is low. Again, the evaluation should be based on data. 

After evaluating your differentiation on each of the value drivers, you have a set of two evaluations for each one: The first is how important the value driver is to the customer in a segment, and the second is the differentiation of that value driver from your competitors. You can plot the two evaluations on a two-dimensional grid, the scale being low, medium and high on both axes

The value drivers that fall in the (High:High) category should become your primary focus, both in terms of the message you send to the customers in that segment and in terms of making absolutely sure that those value drivers are perceived by your customers as you promised — or even better. For example, if quality and safety have been evaluated as (High:High), your resources should be directed toward making sure your customers are aware of your differentiation and that your quality and safety are, in fact, at the highest possible levels.

Strategies for Each Segment

Your market segments don’t all deserves the same attention. You could close out some segments and put your investment into others, especially during these challenging times. As entrepreneurs, you will have a preference based on emotional attachments. This is dangerous, as your pet offering might not be appropriate for all segments. Having re-segmented your market during this pandemic, you are in a position to decide where to put your energies and investment. You will have to choose the segments to grow, those that could stay at the same level of growth and those you should exit.

How do you make such decisions? There are guides in the management literature to help you do this. Essentially, for each segment, you perform a two-fold evaluation: How strong is your segment compared to your strongest competitor in terms of the internal processes that deliver value to the customer? And how attractive is the segment to an investor?

If you are much stronger than your strongest competitor, then your strength in that segment would be high. If you are at the same level as your strongest competitor, your strength would be medium, and if you are weaker than your strongest competitor, your evaluation in that segment would be low.

As for market attractiveness, you will have to evaluate whether the market in a segment is extremely favorable, (considering a set of external criteria) or not. The external criteria could include the size of the market, the growth of the market and the profitability of the market. If the market segment is favorable, then the evaluation for that segment would be high. Otherwise, it could be medium or low. The value of this exercise is that it will enable you to see the relative position of your different segments compared to each other.

The segment with high strength and high market attractiveness (High:High) is the one that deserves your attention the most, and the segment that has low strength and low attractiveness (Low:Low) can be divested unless it provides input into an attractive segment. Other segments will require appropriate strategies based on their evaluation.

Related: The One System That Changes Employees’ Behavior

Strategic Mindset

The strategic mindset we are proposing in this article will help you arrive at a set of strategies appropriate to each of your market segments. To develop a strategy, you need to have identified your market segments, differentiation and the relative position of your segments on the business strength/market attractiveness continuum.

Choosing where to put your time and investment will be key to your survival and growth, enabling you to make sound decisions and use your precious financial and human resources to deliver maximum value to your customers.

By: Riaz Khadem and Linda Khadem Business Strategy Experts

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tutor2u 112K subscribers The STP (segmentation, targeting & positioning) model of marketing is outlined in this revision video. #alevelbusiness#businessrevision#aqabusiness#tutor2ubusiness#alevels#edexcelbusiness#businessalevel

https://www.tutor2u.net/business/reference/market-segmentation

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