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The Iron Triangle Articles

Is One Of These 3 Reasons Why You Still Don’t Have Your Own Local Website?

I love small businesses; the people behind them are intelligent, creative, hard working, and focused! But I worry when I see them working harder than they have to on every aspect of their business.
They’re wearing all the hats and making things happen as best they can, yet they haven’t begun marketing online with a website. Having their own websiteplus give them a whole new world of customers.
Why don’t they have a website? These are the 3 reasons I’ve come across…

1. They don’t know what to do.

They’ve been in business long enough to know there’s always a steep learning curve with something new – the technical details, the marketing details, the necessary insider info.
Very true. A real amateurish-looking, poorly laid out website can do more harm than good. A website should be more than one page filled with ads. Building a website is something that can be learned and some aspects of it are easy, but it takes time. Which leads to objection #2.

2. They don’t have the time to mess with it.

They don’t have time to learn what to do, time to get it going, time to keep it going.
Agreed. That’s why there are companies like mine that specialize in setting up your website and even keeping it updated if you want.

3. They can’t afford to.

Their business is just starting off or they’re not in the position to afford “luxuries” like a website.
A website is a necessity today and I would argue it’s better to get it up as soon as possible so it can help bring in clients. People like to check your company out online, it gives them more of a sense of who you are, and they like to buy online. A website means customers are global, not just local, and that should tell you your chance to profit from your website can far outweigh the cost of getting a website designed and “put up”.

I hope it doesn’t sound like I’m harping, but adding the online component to your business is so important. It gets me jazzed because I know how to put it all together and make it work for you.

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The Iron Triangle Articles Video Marketing

YouTube Marketing For Business Owners

In case you do not know, YouTube is an online video media storage website that allows visitors to upload and watch videos for free, and local business owners like yourself are starting to understand how much YouTube marketing will benefit their business.

Founded in 2005 by a few guys who say the amazing power that a video service would provide, YouTube has grown immensely, boasting over four million visitors in it’s first three months – and still grows even more today! On top of this, the typical YouTube user stays to watch videos for 15 to 30 minutes each day.

Seeing how valuable all of these visitors and video creators have been to the success of YouTube, Google purchased the website for $1.65 billion in 2006. This means that the world’s biggest and arguably best search engine has teamed up with the largest online video provider, which gives you the local business owner an immense advantage with YouTube marketing strategies.

In fact, according to the current statistics, YouTube is now up to 490 million unique visitors each and every month, and all added together these users are spending over 2.9 billion hours a month watching videos! The amazing fact is YouTube has grown bigger than popular sites like Craigslist, Blogger, eBay, and even MySpace!

And with technology also growing at such an astounding rate, YouTube marketing strategies can use High-Definition videos that show a true-to-life representation of your products and services, which entices more viewers to come check you and your local business website out.

So I can hear you ask: This is all well and good, but how does this apply to Internet Marketing?

With all this rapid growth, now is the time to take advantage of the video trends and create your own Youtube marketing strategy, thinking how you can best utilize video in your business. For instance, most local business owners that have taken the leap use YouTube advertising to spread their marketing message and drive targeted traffic back to their website. Just think of the increase in both sales and new customer clients coming your way due to seeing your videos on YouTube – you really do need to start using video today!

Now to begin using YouTube marketing to your advantage doesn’t mean you have to spend a lot of money – remember, YouTube hosts your videos for free! However you do need to consider what video software you want to use to create these videos, as well as what you want to use to capture your video message. It is true you can use your Smart-Phone to take video, but in my own experience a decent digital camcorder that can record HD video formats is a great investment.

After you obtain the needed items, here are some ideas on using YouTube marketing for your own local business:

Text sales pages into video content

Whenever I am faced with a long sales page I tend to scroll to the end of it pretty quickly. There is just too much to read and most of it is just not interesting enough. It would be much better to use one of the best kept YouTube marketing secrets and that is to convert the text sales page into a video sales page.

Moving content engages better with the viewer. Nobody likes to read so much text, but if you have a voice in the background or even a demonstration of the product you are promoting then you are giving out a great visual experience.

People are naturally visual people, having grown up with the cinema and television. We love to watch video content so do not be afraid to create videos.

Video testimonials

Have you ever received feedback in written form for any of your services? If so then go and dig these out because you can turn them into video testimonials. You show the text on screen and speak out loud the testimonial. This could be added of course to your video sales page.

Video articles

Do you publish articles or any kind of written content? Again this is a great candidate for YouTube marketing video content. Turn those dry text articles into video articles and get them loaded up onto YouTube.

Presentations

Ever given a presentation to an audience? Well now is the time to take the video camera out and film your next one. You can load this footage onto YouTube of course as part of your YouTube advertising strategy, but why not package it up into a product also. You can sell this on your website or on a DVD.

Conclusion

You need to imagine how a YouTube marketing video strategy is going to benefit your business. Do you really want your competitors to get ahead? Try turning those dry text based sales pages or articles into online video content and watch your profits climb.

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The Iron Triangle Articles

If Your Customers Are Not Reading Your Emails These Are The Reasons Why…

Emailing your past customers and potential clients is a very important tool you can use to bring in more people to your physical business. Your emails can also keep your company name front and center so people don’t forget about you and what you offer.

But with the number of emails people get these days and knowing they don’t read half of what lands in their in-bins, it becomes more important than ever for your emails to stand out.

That doesn’t mean using spammy subject lines or misleading titles to lure people in. It means using subject lines that have certain trigger words in them. This is crucial because if they don’t even open your email, there’s zero chance they’ll act on what’s inside.

The emails need to be formatted in such a way as to make them easier and quicker to read. There are simple things you can do to make the layout of your emails more inviting to read.

Did you know there are certain words you should not use in your emails or it will cause them to land in your subscribers’ spam folders? It’s pretty easy to avoid these words if you know what they are.

Your emails must have a purpose. Before you send one, make sure it has a call to action. This can be anything such as purchasing during your sale, contacting you for more info, visiting your website to do xyz, or coming in to your store in person for the abc event.

Writing emails is not that hard but crafting them so they stand out and get opened because the subscriber likes your emails is something else.

If you’d like to know my secrets to emailing success, just pick up the phone and call or simply contact us here.

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Social Media The Iron Triangle Articles

The 7 Reasons Social Media Is Important To Your Local Business

Good grief, not another thing you have to learn about and try to figure out when you’ve already got so much going on with your small business?!

Yet social media really is something you should give heavy consideration to using because social media can be really good for your business.

Here are just 7 of the reasons why:

1. You can give instant killer support. Turn your occasional unhappy customers into raving fans by dealing with them directly, quickly, and in a satisfactory manner.

2. It offers ways to get your name out there and keep your name out there. Don’t get forgotten or left behind; offer discounts or limited-time offers or whatever works for your particular company. It’s all about branding.

3. Social media also offers you a chance to show a bit of the face behind the brand. This means a lot to people.

4. It’s another way to be found – you might not be found on the first page of a Google search if you’re a little guy competing against the big guys, but you can be seen when you use social media.

5. Social media gives you targeted traffic. The ones who stick around are the ones interested in your product and company.

6. Consider social media a much less expensive way to advertise/market!

7. It allows your customers a chance to communicate with you using their preferred method. Conversations are real and valuable.

If you need help setting up a Facebook fan page or want to know the social media do’s and don’ts, I’d be happy to help. Please contact me with your needs and let’s get you benefiting from social media as soon as possible!

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SEO & SEM The Iron Triangle Articles

SEO: What Is It?

Search Engine optimization is commonly called SEO. This process involves having your website rank good on natural search results. This is also known as organic search results. It simply makes the website friendly to the search engines. The main goal of SEO is that your website is on the first page in the top position of the natural search results. Search Engine Optimization requires specific tasks that you need to complete to get the rankings you desire to get your web pages to return results from the search engines.

If you are new to this process, you probably have many questions about why your website should be optimized for search engines. Let’s start by explaining Search Engines, and give you the knowledge that you need to succeed.

Search Engines: What Are They?

The type of search engines that we are explaining in this situation, are web search engines. These search engines are used for looking up information on the World Wide Web. We type in terms or sentences that explain what we are searching for into the engine and it will give a bunch of results to choose from. These results are information that is related to what we had searched for. The results will include web
pages, files, video, and even images.

There are certain things that need to occur before these results can be brought up. The search engines need to already have this information in their database. The information that is put together is done by programs that browse web pages on the World Wide Web automatically. The programs mentioned above are named spiders, bots, or web crawlers. These programs analyze web page content by using algorithms. The data that is received is then stored in the index database of the search engine When we conduct a web search, the search engine looks into its index database for information that best match what we are looking for, and displays them on the search engine results pages (SERPs).

3 Major Search Engines Today:

The three most commonly used are Google, Yahoo, and Bing.

Google is the most common. It has by far the biggest market share and around 91% was shown in the end of the year 2010. That stat was concluded by the Stat Counter global Stats. The search engine named Google is owned by the company Google Inc. Google was founded Sergey Brin and Larry Page in the year 1998. It then became a corporation that was publically known in the year 2004.

Yahoo had a 4 % market share near the ending of 2010. It is the second commonly used search engine on the web today. It was founded by David Filo and Jerry Yang in 1994 and is owned by Yahoo Inc. It was incorporated in the year 1995. In the middle of the year 2009, Yahoo and Microsoft told the world that Bing will start to power Yahoo Search. The change to Bing has been seen in Canada and also the USA.

Bing, that was known in the past as Windows Live Search, MSN Search, and Live Search is Microsoft owned. This search engine was launched in the year 2009 and had around a 3 % market share in the end of the year 2010. This was also noted by Stat Counter Global Stats. The move of Yahoo Search to Bing is known to be completed by the year 2012; which means it will be worldwide.

Search Engine Optimization: The Beginning

The beginning of SEO started around the middle of the 1900’s. This occurred when webmasters discovered the potential value of having web pages show up on results that were being search for. They started sending URLs to the engines, which made their pages be able to be indexed. The name itself, Search Engine Optimization was first heard of and put to use in 1997. It was on the Multimedia Marketing Group website.

The early search engines relied on keyword density and keyword meta tags, and thus it was easy to manipulate rankings. You simply had to put the targeted keywords into the meta tags and insert those keywords lots of times into the content of webpages. This was great optimization
for the search engines.. This process was not good for user experience, and that is why measures were taken to keep this type of manipulation from occurring on search engines.

In the year 2004, there were many undisclosed factors put into ranking algorithms to help decrease manipulation. Google, Yahoo, and Bing; being the top search engines do not like to disclose the factors used in the algorithms that they use to help rank web pages. Google, says that they rank their web pages by the use of over 200 various factors.

SEO: Why Do It?

Webmasters learned that when they had their web pages show up on the top of the search results. The higher that the results were; the better. You may be wondering what the value is that they saw; well let me explain.

The more visible and higher ranked that web pages are; the more traffic that they get. The more traffic that a page gets also means more chances to make sales of, affiliate sites, advertisement, and many other things.

Factors of SEO:

Two types of factors that impact Search Engine Optimization. They are named On-Page SEO Factors, and Off-Page SEO factors.

On-Page SEO factors are mostly defined by keyword density, headings, links, and Meta tags that are on a webpage. They also look for site structure. SEO was typically about getting targeted keywords onto a page and place your keywords in for good rankings.

Off-Page SEO factors are external links and are currently more vital than the On-Page SEO factors. The links that come from other sites are crucial when ranking good on the search engine results pages. The quality and quantity of the links that are going towards a site and what they contain is what the algorithms look for when they are ranking web pages. It is important to get high quality sites to link to your sites.

The algorithms have grown up since then and realized that keyword density does not have as much value. The content on a web page must be high quality and well written. The keyword that is targeted should be in the content but not overdone without keyword stuffing. Keyword stuffing is now a thing of the past and will be reported as spam on the web.

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Advertising & Branding The Iron Triangle Articles

Brand Building Is Very Important

It’s not only celebrities who have their own individual brand. As the Web gets increasingly more social, it’s vital for one to take branding into consideration. Just like services and products, your personal brand informs someone about your unique qualities. Here is why it’s so important to think about.

Branding Builds Trust

When you’ve effectively constructed an individual brand, your clients and fans will much better comprehend why you do what you do. This builds trust and credibility, which are both important. When individuals understand and trust you, they’re more comfortable dealing with you and more likely to buy your services or products.

The Real You

On social media, everybody enjoys people who are real. They’re not into the sales talk or corporate image. Branding informs people not simply exactly what you do but what you stand for, which is even more important. Your brand vision is exactly what remains in individual’s minds, not the particular goods that you offer.

The Perceived Value

People react emotionally to brand names, much more so than to products or perks. When you’re well-branded, you have a name in your market. You’re seen as an essential gamer and this raises your value in your clients’ eyes. This also suggests you can charge more for your services.

Gaining Your Edge

Your personal brand helps you beat the competition by showing the special things that you offer. The competitors could win in various other locations, but they can’t compete with your special natural qualities. Branding helps you own special place in a particular niche in the marketplace.

Social Image Control

You’ve got a personal brand whether you realize it or not. Your personal brand is your reputation. Are you in control of it? When you manage your very own branding, you can take control. This enables you to much better deal with attacks or adverse remarks about you.

Build the Buzz

If you brand well, you can get a buzz going. Your name gets circulated by your happy customers and fans, and this indicates that you get even more business through referrals. Branding has a kind of snowball effect if you do it right.

Long Term Job Security

Job security is virtually non-existent today and your individual brand protects you against financial troubles. Even if you work for a big corporation, you’re a company of one. And, just like a company of numerous, your branding keeps you alive. If you’re a freelancer, it’s a crucial to survival.

How do you start developing your own brand? A great place to start is to look at various other successful individual brand names in your market. Follow them on social networks or check out their websites. Exactly what sets them apart? What’s their brand message? How do you feel about them? Look at all the different means they produce their personal brand name and take lessons from them. You can use these techniques to constructing your very own individual brand name.

Should You Be Yourself? Your Personality Is Your Brand!

When individuals talk about individual branding, they always inform you to be yourself. They say that the special character shining with your work helps to brand you. But for most of us, it’s frightening to expose too much. It’s just like going to a party where you don’t know anybody and wondering what to state or do. In the back of your mind, you’re saying, ‘But what if they don’t like me?’.

Always Be Real.

The professionals are right – you need to be yourself. Your personality, along with your guarantee of worth and quality, brand names you. You should to share your household, your hobbies, and your viewpoints. This makes you unique and unforgettable. It develops a relationship with your audience and the information of your personal life may resonate with your followers.

Online, individuals desire only realness and genuineness. They don’t like anything artificial, and they can smell it from a mile away. When you’re figuring in and they understand it, this will not construct the count on you want. It likewise turns you into somebody who doesn’t take a firm stand on anything, which is terrible for branding.

What If They Hate You?

If you’re afraid to let the real you show, that’s only natural. You need to show your personality much like dipping your toe into a cold pool to get utilized to it. Put something out there and see how your audience replies to it. Do you get likes and people commenting? Or do they all ignore the post?

Branding is about connecting with your audience, so keep track of the results of exactly what you do and readjust accordingly. If you show them photos of your children and they go bananas with the comments, keep it up. If you tell them about your enthusiasm for stamp collecting and get only z’s, don’t talk about it again.

Brand Awareness!

Before you share anything too personal, take a minute to consider what potential effect it may have. For instance, is it a touchy political or spiritual subject that may alienate half of your audience? Or is it benign? Picture the worst that can occur and ask yourself if you can deal with it.

Run everything with a filter to see if it appears fake or could be taken the wrong way. It’s fine to take some chances sometimes, but you should wait until your brand is reputable. Another thing that assists is to really know your audience well.

It’s Not About You.

Here’s a huge secret about individual branding that will save you a lot of trouble – It’s not only about you. In fact, your branding efforts are everything about your audience. Although you’re showcasing your achievements, your talents, your strengths, and your enthusiasms, it’s your promise to them that’s going to pay off. For everything you do, put yourself in their shoes and ask yourself, ‘Why should I care?’ That’s exactly what they’ll be doing.

What actually develops your brand name isn’t really the image that you produce or the individual pieces you share; it’s the work that you do. When you provide quality and really assist people, you’ll effectively brand name yourself.

5 Key Characteristics of a Stellar Personal or Business Brand.

The increase of social media has actually made it more vital than ever to have your own individual brand. Like an item brand, your personal brand informs individuals who you are and exactly what worth you bring to the world. Your personal brand name is your credibility and it’s important to take control of it, whether you’re an growing business or a job hunter. There are 5 crucial attributes that it needs to have.

1. Be Consistent

All your actions must be consistent with your brand name image. You’ll become known for something that you always do and you should not stray too far from it. When you’re consistent, it shows that you’re reliable, and this assists to develop your credibility. When you’re inconsistent, this creates a disconnect that’s not conducive to branding. Although you must be consistent, remember that your personal brand name isn’t really fixed. It should advance over time.

2. You Are Unique – One-Of-A-Kind

Individuality is essential due to the fact that your brand has to set you apart from everybody else. Nonetheless, you do not want to require uniqueness by trying to be something that you’re not. Rather, search for your natural qualities that are one-of-a-kind to you. Don’t produce it; discover it. Exactly what is your enthusiasm? Exactly what are you particularly proficient at? Exactly what makes you different? Search for the things you don’t see in others.

3. Make It Personal

The character of a business brand name is more vital to its fans than its actual services or products. This is no different for your individual brand. Show your personality as much as possible, particularly when communicating with individuals online. The majority of people want to be viewed as a friendly, generous, valuable, professional. Spend your time connecting with others and learning from them.

4. Be Memorable

Memorability is most likely the most important characteristic needed for personal branding. Even if you’re the world’s greatest blogger, if no one remembers your name 10 seconds later on, your branding has failed. Highlight a small number of characteristics or skills and do not try to be master at everything. These few things that you actually excel at will become connected to you in the minds of others. Be brazenly different and go against the grain. It will make you a leader rather than a fan.

5. Be Clear

Make sure that everything you produce shouts out loud exactly what it is you do, exactly what worth you provide, and how you’re unique. Don’t make individuals think about it and don’t be subtle. Tell the world exactly what it has to know about you in as a few carefully-chosen words as possible.

Individual branding is a fairly new concept and there isn’t a textbook that tells you how to do it. The best means to deal with your brand name is to see and learn. Identify those who brand themselves well and follow them. Study what they do and learn to do it yourself. Pay close attention to how their words and actions are constant, clear, one-of-a-kind, personal and memorable.

Finding the Right Help.

When you’re trying to find a branding company to contract out work to, check them out thoroughly. Check references, review their customer lists, and look at their portfolios. Speak to a live person before setting up the job and see to it that you can preserve control over everything they do. They must be receptive and reply to you quickly. Your individual branding is incredibly priceless and you must be extra mindful about who you employ.

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Advertising & Branding The Iron Triangle Articles

Does Your Website Have All The Pieces In Place?

Have you ever looked at a great website and analyzed what exactly is on it? This article talks about the extra pieces, besides the general writing, that make up a successful website.

One such “extra piece” is the use of videos. Not everyone likes to read so if you give your visual visitors something to look at, such as How To videos or a tour of your store, they’re more likely to stay around and see what you’re about.

An essential item for a website’s success is testimonials. If you have happy customers, put their letters or emails on your site. Potential clients like to know that others have gone before them and are happy with what you provide. The testimonials can also be videos if you have people who prefer to do it that way.

Another very important element, besides the written words (also known as content), is the use of graphics. I’m talking about eye-pleasing photos, charts, and clip art pictures that draw focus, make the web page interesting, and break up what would be considered a lot of text.

This next one is simple, yet so many websites overlook it – contact information. There is nothing more frustrating than looking all over a website and not finding a way to contact the site owner.

On every page of the website there should be an address, phone number, and email address. This is crucial to good customer service, and it makes a site look more legitimate and less suspicious.

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The Iron Triangle Articles

Does Online Marketing Terms Seem Like A Foreign Language?

Congrats on having a website, but did you know there is so much more you can do with your website right now to help bring in new customers, make current customers happy, grow your business, and have it do many of the online tasks for you?
I’ve got a few online marketing terms to run by you. If you’ve not used the services of an online consultant before, then these terms might sound like Greek to you…

SEO

– This stands for search engine optimization. Optimizing your website for the search engines, like Google, means the difference between a trickle of traffic or a lot of traffic.

Monetize

– Is your website laid out to make you money? Chances are, you haven’t monetized it properly or you’re lacking in the different ways to make money (monetize) your site.

Email Marketing

– This is what you do to actively market your products online; it’s in addition to just showing your website to the world. Collecting email addresses from people means you can send them periodic emails on new products, sales, etc. to bring them back to your site and purchase from you or into your physical place of business.

Autoresponder

– An autoresponder is the vehicle by which you send your emails. You don’t have to set up time-consuming individual emails and put in each email address. The autoresponder does it all.

Shopping Carts

– If you’re selling product, you need shopping cart software on your site. Not all are the same so pick one that has all the features you need and it will make your life easier.

It’s a whole different world, isn’t it? I can walk you through this confusing maze as it’s my specialty. Online consulting and taking care of your online needs is what I do. Contact Us today!

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SEO & SEM The Iron Triangle Articles Traffic Techniques

Using The Right Keywords On Your Website Will Give You Tons Of Traffic

There’s no doubt that having a website for your brick and mortar business is crucial, and even necessary these days.

But it’s not enough just to have any old website. You need a website that will draw traffic, aka visitors, who are surfing the web. These are visitors you wouldn’t otherwise have and they can make a huge difference in the success or failure of your online presence.

So how do you get these visitors who are surfing the web?

By your choice of words…
• in your content
• in your content titles
• in your graphics titles
• behind the scenes of your site
• in your links to other pages of your site

Some words are better than others because they are searched for again and again by TONS of people. Some words, called longtail keywords, are searched for a lot yet have little competition from other sites (not as many sites use these keywords). If you use these favorable longtail keyword phrases it may mean you can land on page 1 in Google for the phrase.

The result of being on page 1 of the Google search engine is huge! Just think what it means if people find your website on the first page of their search – a marked influx of traffic and a big new market of people to market to.

I can help you find the best keywords for your website. I can also add them to your site in all the right places. Let me know if you’d like to talk about this powerful traffic-getting technique.

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Advertising & Branding The Iron Triangle Articles

Is Your Local Website Graphics Losing You Business?

So you’ve finally taken the plunge and put a website up. Congratulations, it’s a wise move!

“What? You did it yourself?

“Let me take a look… oh… ummm…”

Does your website scream amateur? It might be that you did put your site together yourself or you got your cousin, Charlie, who knows a little more than you do, to put it up for you.

Now cast a critical eye over it, as if you were your customer. While you may be proud of your newfound graphic skills, you may actually be scaring potential customers away.

Simply put, a professional website header and other graphics make your online business face professional by association.

If your graphics look, well… lame, then everything else is suspect too, even if you do have valuable information on your site.

A site’s graphics are so important, but often overlooked. If you’ve gone to all the work to bring new people to your website, don’t you want to leave a good first impression?

Take a look at some of the websites you like to visit and check out their website header, their “buy now” buttons, and the other graphical elements.

• Are they in keeping with the overall theme of the business?
• Are they pleasing to look at?
• Do the graphics in the content make the site easier to read?

The good news is you don’t have to be a graphics artist to have a professional-looking website! I can reveal my resources or arrange to have it done for you to save you time and hassles.

You can email or call me anytime to discuss this.