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Monday, July 22, 2013

Strategy for Building an e-Mail List

   

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If business owners are trying to market their products and services on-line, one of the ways to reach more people is to have a subscription form on your website or blog. (If you do not have a website or blog, that could be one of the reasons why nothing is happening for you.) The subscription form is a very non-threatening way of attracting regular readers of your blog for potential customers. To what are they going to subscribe? They will subscribe to a newsletter so that they can keep abreast of your offers, promotions, and new developments in your company.

Now, get ready for this, because it will involve a lot of work. First, a business owner must decide how often they will write newsletters; weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly? The answer depends on your commitment or how quickly things change in your organization. Newsletters should be very carefully written so as not to discourage the reader into unsubscribing. They must capture the reader’s attention so that they will be anticipating your next letter.

If an entrepreneur does not have design skills, he/she can solicit the services of a website designer or if the budget is limited friend or family member. Think about the design of the letter to ensure that the theme matches the business brand or topic of the newsletters. It should remain uniform throughout the duration of the newsletter campaign. If there is no budget for newsletters, then one can use Google.com and enter names of contacts, write newsletters and save them on Microsoft word, and load them one by one into the e-mail program. The business owner can design a PowerPoint advertisement with a name for the letter and photo, and include it with the newsletter.

There are newsletter services which contain templates from which one can choose. After one chooses a template, then he/she uploads their content, including photos and text. For a small monthly fee, the business owner can schedule letters to be mailed on a regular basis. However, if the business owner chooses this option, the letters should be written in advance to meet the scheduling. Each letter should be different. Some companies to consider for newsletter marketing are: Aweber,(http://www.aweber.com), Constant Contact,(http://www.constantcontact.com ) and iContact, (http://www.icontact.com).

The purpose of the newsletters is not to sell the products, but to arouse the reader’s interest in the products. There are four types of marketing material that can be conveyed in a marketing campaign: inform, persuade, motivate to action, and to change a person’s point of view. Focusing on these objectives will give a business owner a better chance at winning the reader as a customer. On the average, a prospect with read seven letters before they become a customer. Diligence is important.

The way in which the business owner addresses these issues in the newsletter are crucial. A carefully crafted newsletter will yield a lot of business. If one’s writing skills are not up to par, then seeking the services of a marketing professional is important. There are also writing courses which one can take at a local community college, continuing education program, or a university, depending on the level of investment one wants to make.

People generally go on the Internet to search for products and services, even before they enter a store or search for a company on-line to inquire about them. Therefore, every business owner needs a good on-line presence, which includes a website, a blog, and participation in the social networks. The most important social networks to join are Face book, LinkedIn, and Twitter. These are the largest on-line networks and each business owner needs to learn the intricacies of working within each one in order to be effective.

In conclusion, a carefully crafted newsletter which is circulated at regular intervals will be a very effective and professional way of gaining more contacts and customers for the business.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Book Reviews – Gaining More Readers

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Publishing a book today is relatively easy, because of self-publishing. This has opened the door for anyone to publish a book. Depending on one’s budget, they can elect to self-edit the books or to hire someone to edit the book for you. As such, there are many unknown publishers who are trying to market books without followers, nor with knowledge and experience in marketing.

Writing the book was quite an accomplishment, involving many hours of research, dedication, and diligence in keeping a schedule so as to create a story which would attract the attention of the people you want to read the book. Unfortunately, marketing the book could be just as time consuming. However, new authors may not have a choice but to attempt to market the books on their own until such time as they accumulate a budget to really give the marketing the attention they need.

There are many avenues to consider and to be explored, as readers find books through several methods. Authors must be aware of the ways in which they can reach the readers for their books. Facebook is an excellent way to reach readers with the different friends which we gather on a day to day basis. Therefore, if you are an author, this should be clearly stated on your Timeline in the “About” section.

As discussed in a previous posting, your Timeline should include your link to your fan page in the work section, preferably in the first entry. I have seen many Timelines with the fan page missing. When clicking onto the workplace, one is often directed to an anonymous page compiled by the Facebook publishers, containing no information about your books or your workplace. This is most unfortunate and there is no telling how many fans one may have missed because of neglecting to provide this information. Members of Facebook often pass around information which they feel may benefit others. It is a great opportunity for quality publications go viral.

Also, you can post your fan page in the “Page” section at the bottom of the “About” section. If you have more than one fan page, you can decide which order to list the pages. At a quick glace of your Timeline, friends or friends of friends can read about your work. Be sure to include links to your website on your fan page as well, so that readers can find the books you are offering for sale.

If you publish books on a site such as Amazon.com, they often include a place where readers can write a review. There are companies which will locate readers who will write quality reviews which would be helpful in selling the book. For a small fee, these companies will find a reader and arrange for a review of the book to be posted on your book site. Some will provide a review in as little as two months. Book reviews are very helpful for those who are shopping on book sites. Several of these book reviewers have high standards and do not write a review for just any book which comes across their desk. Some companies charge for this service and some do not.

Here are some book reviewers to consider:

The Book Plex -http://www.thebookplex.com/book-reviewing.html

Compulsion Reads - https://www.compulsionreads.com/

Inkspand – https://www.inkspand.com/about?utm_source=BingAdwords&utm_medium=CPC&utm_campaign=BingReadersAuthors

In conclusion, hiring a book reviewer could help you to gain exposure to your book through book reviews which can be added to your book site on-line.

Next Topic: Book reviews on major news publishing site.