Archive for November, 2011

Profits, not Traffic

Posted in Business, Small Business, Websites on November 29, 2011 by wolfwomyn

One mistake that many new webmasters and online entrepreneurs make is to focus on generating website traffic.

This is the logic they follow: build a website, work until it is getting a huge amount of traffic, figure out how to monetize that
traffic.

While this might actually work if you get lucky, it is definitely not the best route to follow. There are plenty of cases of websites
and Web 2.0 companies that went bankrupt despite having millions of monthly unique visitors. How so? Simple: they couldn’t monetize the service efficiently, and sustaining the servers and the staff was consuming far too much money.

Traffic is certainly vital on the Internet, but it should be seen as a means to an end, and not the end itself. Just think about it:
would you rather have a website that receives 10 million unique visitors monthly and that makes $5,000 in profits, or a website
that receives only 20,000 unique visitors monthly but makes $50,000 in profits?

As soon as you start working on the idea for a new website or company, you need to figure out where the profits are going to come from. Here are some of the questions that you might wanna ask yourself: Who is going to gain value from my service or product? Who is going to pay for it? How is he going to pay? Will my costs be lower than my revenues?

This principle should also affect the type of website and business model you end up choosing. For instance, do you know why experienced online entrepreneurs prefer to sell their own products or to work with affiliate marketing instead of building advertising-based websites? Because the first two models need a lot less traffic to  make decent money.

The takeaway message is: you are ultimately aiming for profits, not traffic.

Source:
Daniel Scocco
Daily Bog Tips

The Four-Step Plan for Word-of-Mouth Lead Generation

Posted in Business, Small Business on November 17, 2011 by wolfwomyn

“Here’s the big news,” writes Andy Sernovitz in the book Social BOOM! “It’s not social MEDIA. It’s SOCIAL media. It’s about real people and the conversations they have.” In other words, a presence at online networks like Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn isn’t enough. To generate word-of-mouth leads, you’ll also need excellent social skills—and here’s how to go on the charm offensive:

Be interesting. Do you tell friends about dull companies, products or advertisements? Do you arrange introductions for people who bore you silly? Of course not. According to Sernovitz, there’s a good way to gauge your word-of-mouth potential. Simply ask: Would anyone tell a friend about this?

Make it easy. Word-of-mouth relies on a simple message—a single, memorable line that people are likely to repeat when describing your product or service. “Anything longer than a sentence is too much,” he says. “It’ll get forgotten or mangled.”

Make people happy. Customers who love your company will enthusiastically share their experiences with friends. “You will get more word of mouth from making people happy than anything else you could possibly do,” he notes.

Earn trust and respect. No one will risk her own reputation by recommending a company with a reputation for iffy business practices. But when you’re known for treating customers, partners and employees with great care, referrals become a no-brainer.

The Po!nt: Like it or not, word-of-mouth marketing is a popularity contest. And you’ll win when you get people can’t resist you, your product or service and your integrity.

Source: Get to the Point-Business to Business &
Social BOOM!

The Secret to Shorter, More Effective Messaging

Posted in Business, Social Media on November 15, 2011 by wolfwomyn

Observing that the typical short (<25 word) marketing message produces almost nothing of value, Adele Revella has set herself to correcting this grave error.

According to Revella, the typical business product is a multi-tasker with a long list of features and benefits, meaning we have to get its key merits out effectively without overwhelming readers. But there are other priorities that distract from brevity:

  • Explaining all the new features
  • Differentiating the product from the competition (and tossing shout-outs to other products from the same suite)
  • Using good SEO terms
  • Satisfying internal template requirements

That being said, nothing on the above list takes the user into account. And that is the type of thinking that turns a potentially punchy message into a tedious summary.

How to make a small message a big seller? Turn it active and “social”-conscious. Consider the difference between these two messages:

  • Our solutions have been tailored to fit your industry business processes, your customer strategies, and your success criteria.
  • Listen to free Internet radio, find new music based on old and current favorites.
  • The first is an anonymous vendor. The second message comes from Pandora Radio. Which one speaks to you?

So, how do you find your very own short-and-sweet text? Walk down your user’s service path: Visit a site, click on one of your ads, consider what it says, see where it takes you. Now ask yourself: What message are you getting? Is it effective? How can it be pared down and sharpened?

Describe your product the way that user would in a comment section, and build from there.

The Point: Walk a mile in their clicks and comments. The best path to effective sales messaging is the user’s path.

Source: Get to the Point: Social Media

The Pareto Principle Can Save Your Business

Posted in Blogs on November 1, 2011 by wolfwomyn

The Pareto principle, which is also called the 80-20 rule, states that for many events and things in life, 80% of the effects come from 20% of the causes.

For example, an Italian economist once observed that 80% of land in Italy was owned by 20% of the people. His name was Vilfredo Pareto, and that is where the principle got its name from.

Another famous example: Microsoft once found that by eliminating 20% of the largest bugs in its operating system 80% of the crashes  would stop.

Another one: most businesses find that 80% of their revenues come from just 20% of the customers.

So how can the Pareto principle save your business? Well, it is  clear: by identifying and focusing your work on the 20% of the tasks that will generate 80% of the results you’ll become much more  efficient and profitable.

Here is one practical example that you probably can relate to. Suppose you have a blog and that you are trying to make it popular (e.g., to increase its traffic). There are many things you could  do to achieve that, including:

-write quality content
-promote that content
-use social media (e.g., Twitter and Facebook)
-use social bookmarking sites (e.g., Digg and Reddit)
-tweak your design
-track your stats
-chat with readers
-create Youtube videos
-article marketing
-submit your blog to directories
-search engine optimization

That is a lot of things right? And many bloggers actually do all of them. But what does the Pareto principle tell us about this? It’s simple: 20% of these activities are going to produce 80% of the  traffic gain.

In fact I place these activities right on top for that reason. They are: writing quality content and promoting that content. If you do  these two things you’ll get new readers, new subscribers, backlinks  from other sites, your search rankings will increase, and  ultimately your traffic will increase.

Sure, the other activities can help, but 80% of the results will come from writing quality content and promoting it.

Guess where you should spend most of your time?

And remember that the Pareto principle works on almost any  situation, so apply it for your own business or website, and focus on the 20% of things that will bring you 80% of the results.

Source: Daniel Scocco