Monday, 23 December 2013

Why Sales is Going INBOUND and How You Can Keep Up (Hubspot)


Why Sales Is Going Inbound (And How You Can Keep Up)
from HubSpot All-in-one Marketing Software

One blog post for the road before Christmas Day!


Note that posting your content on Slideshare is a smart, strategic move:
  • Because you get Effortless and Free Backlinking,
  • Easy Content Re-distribution & Brand Dissemination,
  • Lead generation with your Optin Form at the end of the show and it
  • Facilitates 'budding evangelists' to share and promote your Message. 
  • It hones your own Focus & Content Production so you can
  • Deliver short, sharp Messages with big Meanings and it
  • Packs more Punch when you use contextually Relevant Images/ Inserts
  • Especially if they're Quality and Attractive (photos, graphs, quotes, etc.)

 

This is a powerful illustration (courtesy of Hubspot)! Click the pic to see an enlarged version.

("Don't let this cute face fool you. He's giving you 1 star on Yelp")!   

Isn't that so true in real life? Your friendliest encounter can sometimes 
turn out to be your harshest critic and for seemingly minor reasons...and
yet you've got to win these ones over too - because it's a - Buyer's World!

It's true that many businesses don't get it, not even some of the BIG ones...
they haven't cottoned on to the fact that the balance of power has shifted...
irreversibly...to the Customer. Now he has a chance to be heard...virally!



Monday, 16 December 2013

TIP: Why Your Customers Can't See Your Ads and What to Do About This

This is a short post (for Firefox users):

Woke up one morning and wondered what happened to the ads on your site?
Your own marketing ads?

They've all disappeared? Check your browser.
Chances are your browser automatically updated and disabled all ads.


QUICK TIP For Firefox Users: 
  1. Go to TOOLS / ADD-ONS / EXTENSIONS
  2. And disable the Ads Removal extension/app
  3. You will probably find a similar situation with other browsers.
  4. The chances are that your visitors also might not see the ads on your site - you can address this problem by ensuring that you have sufficient text links to your products for every post you make on your blog.
  5. Don't rely solely on image ads to do the job - use as many different media types as possible to eliminate the risk of your ads being blocked by ad blockers. 
  6. BUYERS: It's that time of the year when traffic and sales are hottest, so help your visitors find your product links because many of them are looking to buy. You don't need too much hard sell.
  7. If you are selling your photos, note that holiday theme pics are ever so popular now, for video creation, greeting cards, etc.




Need Extra Cash for the Holidays? > How To Sell Stock Photos
(easy, recurring, passive income)

Get Paid to Take Photos

Capture Your Holiday Moments With Ease & Fun:

Sunday, 10 November 2013

6 Customer Service Tips for the Holiday Rush

6 Customer Service Tips For the Holiday Rush from Desk

Tips for Providing the Kind of Customer Service During the Holidays that Ensure
Your Customers Stay Happy and Loyal Long After the Holiday Rush is Over.

These helpful customer care tips are not only applicable to the Holidays season but all year round. That's what will set you apart from your competition.
It then becomes possible to have and enjoy
Christmas all over again ... everyday!


Further reading:



 

Saturday, 9 November 2013

The New Landscape of Content Marketing (Slideshow)

Best To View in FULLSCREEN Mode > Click 'SQUARE' Icon (bottom RHS of the Slide):
 
 
The New Landscape of Content Marketing from Leo Burnett Worldwide

One of the Benefits of Content Marketing is listed as "Long life, Low cost".
How very true!

This is a great set of slides - clear, uncluttered, concise, short.**
Everything is clear and concise, including the diagrams.
(See below for more tips on creating fantastic slides like those of Steve Jobs)

Note that most of the 'Fishes' are congregating on Google, Youtube and Facebook.
In that order, according to slide # 4.

Advice for brands: "Fish where the Fishes are"
"Happy Fishing" from Us!

http://surgeyourprofits.blogspot.com


**Refresh your memory re Guy Kawasaki's points about creating slide shows

Also Watch the Kind of Slides that Steve Jobs Prepared
(And How to Present Like Him)




Your THEME...

It helps if you have "DRAMATIC FLAIR" ....!!

Make numbers MEANINGFUL...

Connect THE DOTS...

K-I-S-S...

Short on bullet-points, BIG on VISUALS...

1 or 2 - LESS IS MORE...

Give a SHOW...

And much more, find out

How Steve Jobs does it so Brilliantly!




Further Reading:
 



 

Friday, 8 November 2013

Sales Tool KIT Checklist: How to Empower Salesforce to Increase Sales

http://surgeyourprofits.blogspot.com/2013/11/sales-toolkit-checklist-how-to-empower.html
MOTHER HUBBARD'S RESOURCE CUPBOARD!

Sales Tool Kit or Disaster Kit?


Is your Sales Tool-Kit a Marketing Arsenal-Powerhouse or does it resemble a Disaster Kit?
Some vendors have some, none or all of the following in their Tool-Kit while a few have more:
  • Email swipes
  • Articles, reviews
  • Banners, product images
  • Video, audios, pdfs
  1. Well done if you have supplied these creatives to your salesforce. It's a good start but...
  2. Are they sufficient in quantity and variety?
  3. Were they created professionally and are they high quality?
  4. How often do you update this tool-kit if at all?
  5. Do you test and track them, regularly? Conversion rate?
  6. Do you listen /get feedback from your sales force?

Banners, Product Images:


How many images do you have in your "arsenal"? Some vendors have only ONE so most people are brain-dead when these pop up, ie. they have tuned out (become ad-blind) to that Zombie banner as they have seen it all round the Net. Some vendors have even less than this!

How old are your graphics?  They could be very outdated if they have been around for years - check out the style, colours and the general design. If your banners feature people check their hairstyle, clothes, makeup, etc. because they are a dead giveaway of the era in which your banners were created!

The Net has gone very visual (and viral) and with the advent of smartphones there has been an explosion of images. While you see  a deluge of 'lunch' and 'feet' photos what's really happening is that people are getting better at taking images and standards are getting higher. Retro banners would appeal to some, like Grandma. They look better on vintage sites or sites that take you down memory lane to yesteryear but these are generally not mainstream, which is fine, if you're not selling to main-streamers.

It is more damaging to use a poor quality image than to not use one at all. As a publisher you could use savvy text links to pull visitors rather than drive them away with a poor perception of the product caused by low-quality images if the underlying product is actually a good one and which has a hungry market.

Consider size, colours, text and variety - some vendors have banners of all sizes using the SAME image which is not so bad if it was a GOOD one!  Some banners are just plain cheap-looking, or downright unattractive.  There's no need to wonder why your sales force have deserted you. When you're in the midst of an 'Image-Renaissance' there's just no excuse for the paucity of decent creatives if you're serious about surging your revenue.  (And don't forget the text; the right words can convey the right message like a laser beam. It's only by testing a variety of banners with different messages, etc. will you be able to home in on your best performers like a heat-seeking missile, viz. the ones that have the highest click-through rates.)

And then there are those worth-their-weight-in-gold publishers who will try to surmount this marketing scarcity by creating their own banners, which is great if they are good designers but you have less control on how your product is portrayed. And why would you waste your sales force's time when it would be more productive for them (and your bottom-line) to focus on marketing than on banner-creation? That's your designer's job. Hopefully your designer is clued up on the psychology of selling (cf. glossy magazines) and is sold on the adage that  "A (great) picture is worth a 1000 words"! One point worth noting is that although it's wonderful to have good creatives it's even more important to have an excellent product - it has to deliver on your promises, otherwise your business is built on quicksand.

Videos, Audios: 


Check that the videos you have created as a resource for your salesforce is actually acceptable on Youtube and other video channels. There could be valid reasons why your sales force hasn't been using these. The criteria for accepting videos seem to be getting more stringent and even those created for affiliates may be affected. Your Review or Testimonial Videos are of no use to your salesforce if they are not accepted by video platforms.  Solution: create and upload YOUR videos to your own channel then allow your sales force to embed these in their own sites. Ensure your videos are original (with no copyright issues), and of a high quality. (Tip: publish even more videos if you wish to dominate your niches for SE rankings.)

Articles, Reviews, Swipes:


There's nothing more disappointing to see great websites with beautiful, glossy, product images and sales copy and then find the quality of the content-marketing articles to be sub-standard.  Proofread ALL the articles yourself, every single one of them even if you have 250 articles or more and edit them before you release them.

Better still invest in getting some top writers in that niche to have these professionally written.  Some articles read like they were taken off some cheap PLR packages or assigned to writers who were not proficient in English, with rather quirky and sometimes humorous usage of the language. You get a 'tickle' when you read them, which is fine if you're operating in a 'humour-niche' or if your goal is to confuse and/or distract buyers. (Instead of focussing on your product's selling points they will be side-tracked by your grammar or syntax!). 

Another alternative is to invest in a powerful Content Spinner so you can produce varying content from your original, paid articles, videos, blogs, etc. to update your vault's content at say, quarterly intervals, to help out those publishers who struggle with content creation.

Also read the swipes before you release them as some can sound a little cheesy. Adapt this to suit your region or target market.  Do a quick analysis to see where your buyers are coming from, they could be more local (from your country or region) than you realise. 'Sounding' right (not only what you say but how you say it) is important because prospects tend to resonate better with those who have similar ideology or communication style as themselves. It's probably safer to use neutral expressions if you have an international audience in order to garner a wider appeal and following.

Testing, Conversion, Feedback:


Rate and Rank: Interact with your sales force and give cues as to what creatives work best (you would know if you have tested them).  Note that everything is subject to change, especially on the Net, so what worked yesterday may no longer work today.

[If you are using an affiliate manager to attend to your sales force do you know what your 'right-hand' man / woman is doing? Some of them (actually a whopping 50% in a recent study by a major network on customer service and affiliate support) do NOT respond at all to queries ie. ignores contact from your sales-army even when these PEOPLE are bringing in regular sales! It does make you wonder how your BUYERS will be treated should they require similar support?]

Also your creatives might work a treat in their CTA / CT rates, but if your website is not converting you need to revamp. You will only know this if you test, and test all regularly. No point sending traffic if your site does not convert!

Sometimes traffic does not convert for the Publisher because the Landing Page resembles an OPT-IN page more than a Sales Page. In that case seek other vendors to work with especially those who will reward you well for your effort in driving traffic to them. And scrutinise each landing page carefully. You can forgive tool-kit paucity if their sales copy is very convincing and more importantly, if their site converts. Confirm by testing. You deserve to get the sales as a fair reward for your hard work and expense in driving traffic to your vendors.

It's a given that publishers especially newbies, find it easier to succeed if they get good support such as mentioned above from their vendors.  It's a profitable and win/win situation for all parties (including third parties) when that happens. Good support starts with a good, sales and marketing tool-kit arsenal. It is one of the easiest and cost-effective ways of helping your publishers achieve success and therefore of ultimately leveraging your own online success.

Some vendors have excellent resources and tick all these boxes but they are in the minority.  If your email is being used to aggressively push products onto you instead of receiving sales support then unsubscribe...fast!  And shop around. You'll find that some networks have excellent affiliate/sales managers who will pro-actively give personal support to help you sell more because they truly do 'get' the symbiotic nature of the relationship between YOUR SUCCESS and THEIR BOTTOM LINE!!  You can do so much flying solo or with a select few but when you cultivate an army of sellers, the sky's the limit!!











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Wednesday, 6 November 2013

10 Ways Tumblr Can Improve Your SEO




Tumblr is a cool social platform and continues to improve with some nice touches which their fans love and appreciate.  (You may be interested in this Tumblr Article.that I penned earlier.)

Their main attraction is the general simplicity of their user-interface (for posting many different types of media content, ease of linking, freedom to customise many features), which acts both like a social platform as well as a blogging station with the benefits of both such as ease of sharing (internally and with other social sites), as well as being able to post a wide variety of content that is more than micro-entries.

The Tumblr article above from SMT (follow the link) is really good and I will not be rehashing it. This post with the link to their article is mainly to benefit those who follow my blog (plus a brief summary of Tumblr from me).


Thursday, 17 October 2013

Internet Users: The Changing Face of the Internet's Demographics

http://surgeyourprofits.blogspot.com/2013/10/internet-usage-changing-face-of.html

The Shifting Sands of Time: From 66% of Users in the USA, in 1996 to just 13% in 2012, the majority of Internet Users are now from Asia-Pacific (42%) and Europe (27%). The pie-charts below show it all. For the full article see below:




On another note, if you are hesitant to embed content from other websites or blogs because of copyright concerns you can always do this:
  • post the 'share or embed' link from the article to your Google+ profile or page FIRST
  • and then EMBED that post into your webpages (as above) - to get a link, snippet and a thumbnail of the article. This is a superfast and wholly legitimate way to embed content from sites that only allow you to share the link (to your social accounts) but not embed their content.  
  • do the same for any videos published by them relating to that article to get a prominent thumbnail and video on your site.


Social Media in Space: On yet another note, where will NASA be, without social media? Check this out:





Tuesday, 8 October 2013

Google's New 'Hummingbird' Search Algorithm: Read About The Experts' View




The above is an embedded post from Google+.

http://surgeyourprofits.blogspot.com/2013/10/googles-new-hummingbird-search.html

27 Sep 2013

Google's New Hummingbird Search Algorithm:

"What is Hummingbird? How big a change is it?" Andrew Girdwood, Media Innovations Director, LBi:  "Hummingbird isn’t an algorithm update. It’s a NEW algorithm and that’s incredible. It’s incredible because it’s a huge change and no one noticed."!!  
 "Hummingbird is an evolution of Google caffeine, which rolled out in 2010 and was focused primarily at finding fresher results. Like a hummingbird, the new algorithm is intended to be 'precise and fast'." Joe Friedlein, Browser Media
" ’how do I install blue widgets in my house’? - With Hummingbird, Google will be placing greater emphasis on the other words in the search query such as ‘’how do I’’ and ‘’my house’’ ." Jimmy McCann, Head of SEO at Search Laboratory

Did you notice this change? Totally NEW Algorithm!! - that's massive!!

Has your page rank been affected by Hummingbird?

Some of us have been affected while others have not (or not yet?!!)

Brief observation: What about you as a user - have you noticed how your search queries have changed? Are there more "how to' and "what is / are" type queries?  I noticed we are doing this more - once upon a time we would use "Ask Jeeves" but these days more and more, Google is the go-to for all sorts of search queries.

You may also be interested in the article below regarding the Keyword Tool.




.
24 Sep 2013

Google's Keyword Tool:


Google's keyword data apocalypse: the experts' view:

"Yesterday it emerged that Google is planning to encrypt even more organic search queries, thus removing even more search keyword data from sites. 

"The already tricky task of measuring natural search data has been made even harder by this latest move."

"What does the removal of (most of the) remaining keyword data mean for search marketers?" Rishi Lakhani, Search Strategist, explains.

According to Google (via Danny Sullivan at Search Engine Land):
"We want to provide SSL protection to as many users as we can, in as many regions as we can — we added non-signed-in Chrome omnibox searches earlier this year, and more recently other users who aren’t signed in.
"We’re going to continue expanding our use of SSL in our services because we believe it’s a good thing for users…. The motivation here is not to drive the ads side — it’s for our search users."
The consensus seems to be that this is not going to affect SEO professionals who are 'resilient' much .... that little players might struggle more while bigger players will have more resources to deal with this. Read on for the full details.

The Chinese 'Crisis': This encryption of even more organic search queries could be seen as a 'negative' event in SEO history but then again this could be an opportunity for those creative souls  to develop a "solution", then dominate the market and succeed (and profit) wildy? The race is on! And how will Bing and Yahoo respond?  It will sort out the wheat from the chaff, not just with web-owners but with professional SEO players as well because of this "not provided" challenge (no transparency regarding referring traffic keywords that in the past was freely given with organic searches).


What is the Chinese 'Crisis'?

http://surgeyourprofits.blogspot.com/2013/10/googles-new-hummingbird-search.html

When written in Chinese, the word 'crisis' is composed of two characters. One represents 'danger' and the other represents 'opportunity'. John F. Kennedy


Screenshots of what you will find in lieu of the once famous 'External Keyword Tool"- search results for KW Tool and the look of the new, Keyword Planner:

http://surgeyourprofits.blogspot.com/2013/10/googles-new-hummingbird-search.html


http://surgeyourprofits.blogspot.com/2013/10/googles-new-hummingbird-search.html


Here are the first page results as on 9-oct-2013 (#6, #8, #9 - alternatives to the ex KW-Tool?):

About 57,400,000 results (0.28 seconds) 

Search Results

  1. Google Adwords Keyword Tool

    https://adwords.google.com/o/.../Explorer?__c...u...KEYWORD...
    A description for this result is not available because of this site's robots.txtlearn more.

  2. Keyword Planner has replaced Keyword Tool ... - Google Help

    https://support.google.com/adwords/answer/3141229?hl=en
    With Keyword Planner, we've combined the functionality of Keyword Tool and Traffic.

  3. Google Keyword Tool

    www.googlekeywordtool.com/
    Newest Google Keyword Tool with Webmaster Help and Google Tool Chart. Easy remember URL. Helpful free Webmaster resource and tool box.

  4. Google AdWords – Online advertising by Google

    adwords.google.com/
    Advertise with Google AdWords ads next to Google search results to boost website traffic and sales. With Google AdWords pay-per-click (PPC) keyword ...

  5. Google Keyword Tool Is Officially Dead, Keyword Planner Gets ...

    searchengineland.com/google-keyword-tool-is-officially-dead-r...
    by Ginny Marvin - in 161 Google+ circles
    Aug 28, 2013 - Lukewarm may be overstating it. If Twitter sentiment is any gauge, the SEM world has not exactly embraced Google's new Keyword Planner, ...

  6. Google Keyword Tool - Try Our Tools for Google Keywords Free ...

    www.wordstream.com/keyword-tool-google
    by Larry Kim - in 3,154 Google+ circles
    Google's Keyword Tool omits many of the Web's best keywords. Learn how WordStream beats Google's Keyword Tool with continuous research and discovery.

  7. Google Keyword Planner and Keyword Research Tools - Moz

    moz.com/blog/keyword-volume-tools
    by Ruth Burr - in 1,677 Google+ circles
    Sep 10, 2013 - With Google's recent announcement that their ​free Keyword Tool has gone away, replaced with their integrated PPC tool the Keyword ...

  8. Google's Keyword Research Tool: Top 3 Alternatives | Social Media ...

    socialmediatoday.com/.../google-s-keyword-research-tool-top-3-alternati...
    Aug 20, 2013 - I'll show you some viable free alternatives to our beloved Google Adwords Keyword Tool, along with pros and cons of each.

  9. 8 Alternatives to Google Keyword Tool - Duct Tape Marketing

    www.ducttapemarketing.com › Blog home › Web Marketing
    by John Jantsch - in 28,270 Google+ circles
    Sep 13, 2013 - While I found that Google Keyword Tool was sufficient for most basic research it no longer serves that need very well.

  10. Google Keyword Data Goes Missing Again, This Time From ...

    searchenginewatch.com/.../Google-Keyword-Data-Goes-Missing...
    by Thom Craver - in 492 Google+ circles
    Sep 30, 2013 - Google Webmaster Tools is missing keywords data. It appears as though search query data from the Search Traffic section hasn't been ...



    Further Reading:

    Time to say a last goodbye to organic keyword data?
    24 Sep 2013

    10 Ways Google's Hummingbird Will Shape Future SEO and Content Marketing Very good article.


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Monday, 16 September 2013

Google Plus EMBED Feature Has Benefits

Since 9 September 2013, Google + allows you to embed public Google+ posts from Google+ to your website or blogs. At this point in time you cannot customise the embedded post - they are quite large (see below "tests 1 & 2" on the blog template as well as within this post) and will be larger depending on how much annotation you have. By default it has a white background, so if you have a dark background your embedded post will contrast with your site. However with time perhaps you might have the option to match or blend your 'embeds' with your template (like Adsense widgets?).

Advantages Of Being Able To Embed Google+ Posts:

You can ramp up your content creation very easily using the content-rich Google-plus feeds to your advantage, by curating from G+ and embedding public G+ posts into your webs or blogs, and as a result increase traffic and exposure to them. You can embed your own posts or other people's posts, if you like their content.

This is more eye-catching than just linking to the G+ post on your blog and is completely interactive - people can comment, +1 and follow you inline.  Moreover the embedded post will auto-update in real-time whenever your G+ post changes.

Find a variety of curated posts (text, images, video) below - multimedia posts are all supported and you can embed as many as you like on a single page:


ZOMBIES! Living Forever on the Net!



 Google+ Video Post Embeds Well:
You Can Play The Video On Site, Without Navigating Away




How to Start Your Day - Have a Cheeky Cuppa!



Terms of use: Note, when you embed a Google Plus post you have to observe Google's terms and conditions. When you embed Google+ content on a website, you also give Google permission to review and analyze your website.

Google also integrated Google+ Sign-In with Google’s Authorship program. When you link your Wordpress site with Google your blog post will automatically be associated with your Google+ profile.

So if your content surfaces during a Search query, News or other Google product, your name, photo and Google+ profile will also surface alongside your articles (at a relevant and timely point - how cool is that?).

TIP TO LEVERAGE GOOGLE+: When you post your content (eg. YT video) on Google+ FIRST and THEN EMBED that content into your webs you have the added advantage of including all the interactive elements (comment, share, +1, follow) attached to your Google+ post as well, to help you gain more engagement, followers and spread your ripples without ever having to navigate away from your webs!  Similarly, you can also conveniently EDIT your post in the same manner, right from your embedded location without having to navigate away.


Tutorial on How to Embed & Edit Google+ Post






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For more information:
From Google's Seth Sternberg: Author attribution and embedding posts


Wednesday, 4 September 2013

How to SUCK at Customer Service!

...and SALES, and Handover YOUR PROFITS to Your Competition!!

  • Continue bombarding your unrelenting sales pitch to your customers via your 'in-house' videos even AFTER they have purchased your product, 
  • in lieu of true, how-to tutorials to show them how to use your (complicated) product! Customers who have bought DO NOT want more SALES PITCH! They just want to know how to use your product/s -  and FAST! Evaluate your 'tutorial' videos and look at them from the eyes of your CUSTOMERS and not from your MARKETING DEPARTMENT!
  • Make it really hard for your customers to use your interface - throw up every stumbling block you can think of to slow them down, eg. they can't create new campaigns at all, let alone easily. If you do not allow eg. caps in your campaign names then your instructions should clearly state so rather than stating half a fact (meaning list in full what is not allowed or better yet state the full list of what IS allowed).
  • Make it hard for customers to view their FULL stats (traffic, sales, etc.) by revealing some stats on some pages instead of all the important data on one page - this is a NO-BRAINER! It is not impossible because your competition is doing just that ... serving a more user-friendly stats page. Integrated data that is flexible and which a user can use/ evaluate/ extrapolate, etc. in order to improve their own campaigns make such a service invaluable to customers.
  • Make it hard for your affiliates (yes they are customers too! In fact they are more because they LEVERAGE a whole lot of customers to you!) to log in by making the link as unobvious as possible eg. using another name/ tab for the usual 'AFFILIATE LINK/ LOGIN' 
  • Hiding your 'FORGOT YOUR PASSWORD' to the opposite bottom corner of the log in link instead of the usual and intuitive position - just below the log in button!!! Let them hunt around just to reset password - that should ENDEAR YOU to them!
  • Prevent affiliates from auto-filling password with their browsers - make them type in each and every time - they love all those extra hassles notwithstanding they have too many passwords to remember already.
  • Treat your sales force as if they were customers, in other words you are more interested in pitching sales at them than helping them to MAKE SALES for you!  Isn't opting for the ("golden" and instantly-gratifying) egg instead of the (multiple, recurring, egg-laying) GOOSE a rather myopic and short-term view? Your salesforce would pitch in more if they knew you were more interested in helping them to succeed rather than to make one-off sales off them directly!
  • As a vendor you need to follow your own principles - target your market!  Did you even segregate your list - sales staff or customer?  Anyone who opted to become your affiliate is your salesforce - that is YOUR STAFF.  Just because it's commission-based and you have not met them physically doesn't make then any less than 'real' staff members! Ask the big boys, would they be as successful if not for their Affiliate Sales Team? If you haven't segregated your team from your customers how do you make contact with them separately? You probably haven't.
  • Also the excuse you used to obtain their email was that they could gain access to your marketing materials but after the initial login they are locked out, so how do you expect them to serve you? Did you ever contact them as their 'Affiliate Manager' if you haven't appointed one to look after them, to help them promote your stuff - if at all?
  •  So how do you expect your sales team to serve you if you haven't served them at all? It is not impossible because there are networks who are doing just that and... so very well! Ok, you may be a small player and not a billion-dollar network but some, small but switched-on players are doing this very well too - but they are in the minority. If you are a large network, you have no excuse because you have even more resources and reasons NOT to support your salesforce!
  • Customers and Salesforce do NOT have to suck it because ... there are plenty of VIABLE alternatives - from your slick and able-bodied competitors!
  • Evaluating and making some changes as per my rant here, would likely bring positive results to your business.  If you do a great job in serving your customers AND salesforce you won't have trouble attracting both groups to become evangelists for your products/ causes - one to ENTHUSIASTICALLY buy from and refer you and the other to ENTHUSIASTICALLY sell for you.

These are just a few of the warts that's surfaced ... keep you posted for more.



Wednesday, 28 August 2013

"What the Plus! Google+ for the Rest of Us": By Guy Kawasaki (Must-Read)





Book Description
:

"Publication Date: August 21, 2012 | ISBN-10: 0071810102 | ISBN-13: 978-0071810104 | Edition: 1

Learn how to master Google+—the world's fastest-growing social-media service

Attract followers. Engage enchanting people. Promote your brand.

The former Chief Evangelist for Apple knows a superior product when he sees one, and he sees one in Google+. Hands down. In What the Plus!, Guy Kawasaki explains how to get started, create an enchanting profile, optimize for social searches, share posts and photos, conduct hangouts, and gain followers."

“We didn’t expect over 100 million people to join Google+ so quickly. If we had, we might have written a tutorial like this one. Lucky for us, Guy has written this wonderful introduction to Google+. Highly recommended!” —Vic Gundotra, Senior Vice President, Social, Google

“What the Plus! is the G+ motherlode! Guy’s book will make you fall madly in love with Google+ and never look back!” —Mari Smith, author of The New Relationship Marketing and coauthor of Facebook Marketing: An Hour a Day

“People ask me why I like Google+ better. I struggle to find the words, but Guy Kawasaki not only figured it out but shows you how to get the most out of this new social network.” —Robert Scoble, Rackspace Videoblogger

“Brimming with tips for optimizing the Google+ experience, the author explains how to get started, find people, search by interests, manage circles (segmented relationships with family, colleagues, etc.) and streams (the flow of posts that you see), and hang out in groups for classes, press conferences, and other purposes.”  —Kirkus Reviews

PACKED WITH SCREENSHOTS THAT TAKE YOU STEP BY STEP THROUGH THE GOOGLE+ EXPERIENCE

If you have been following the author on Google+ you will notice that his posts are indeed engaging and interesting. There is an art to engaging with your followers and it's obvious that he's got a handle on it which we can all learn from.  More about the author - you can view his Amazon page here.

Wednesday, 21 August 2013

Tutorial: How To Turn OFF Pinterest Group Board EMAIL Notifications





Are you deluged by email notifications from Pinterest since you joined their Group Boards? You can turn off these notifications but this is not that obvious so here is the tutorial.

Note that there is only one button for both functions, like a two-way switch! When it is off, the button is grey, when on it is red - this could be a little counter-intuitive for some people, hence the (short) video.

Enjoy and share if you find it useful > http://youtu.be/QGQO8RwKm8Y
It's easy to do since YouTube increased its sharing options recently so make the most of it. 

http://surgeyourprofits.blogspot.com/2013/08/tutorial-how-to-turn-off-pinterest.html



Monday, 19 August 2013

Does Anyone Know How to Stop a Thief Who Has stolen a WHOLE BLOG and reposted on BLOGGER?

Hi Guys

Does anyone have ideas on how to stop someone who has stolen a WHOLE BLOG from the ORIGINAL AUTHOR?

And then posted the WHOLE BLOG onto BLOGGER.COM?
And mimicked one's blog title as well (by reversing parts of the title?)

I would be very interested to know what kind of measures one can take to stop that person?

Please contact us here. Thanks for your help.


Wednesday, 14 August 2013

Now that You've Used the New GMAIL - a "New Gmail" REVIEW

 So how did you find the new Gmail?

http://surgeyourprofits.blogspot.com


Despite the fears of many Internet Marketers and Marketing Sites my personal experience has been a positive one. For a start there has hardly been any email newsletters drifting into the 'wrong' column ie. 'Promotions' as a result of the new Gmail format!

And it was good to see that Gmail classified most of the social media notifications accurately. This new feature seems to be a bonus rather than a pain, It saves time and results in a tidier and more organised inbox. The cherry on top was the fact that the whole process is automated and managed by really sharp Gmailer Elves!

You can always "star" the emails that you wish to keep if you find mail that is not in the correct column (as per your 'quirky' classification :) - the Gmailer Elf is actually more logical and efficient than many of us!):
  • and then drag and drop the emails to the correct column, 
  • or tick the square box on your Left to select an email, and then Right click/ Move to Tabs/ Select Tab - to move to the Tab of your choice which are by default: 'Primary', 'Social' or 'Promotions'.
  • You can add more tabs to these three, eg. 'Updates' and 'Forums'.
  • Run your mouse over each tab (in 'Settings' View) to see what kind of emails each Inbox Tab will contain.
  • You can find 'Settings' on the top RHS denoted by a 'cog' icon. Click on its drop-down menu and select "Configure Inbox" then run your cursor over the  options available. 
  • If you prefer the old format where all your emails are in one place simply untick everything except 'Primary', which is the default setting and cannot be tampered with for obvious reasons.
  • Star the ones you wish to keep and move them to the Primary column if these emails have ended up elsewhere. After a short while Gandelf will cotton on pretty quickly and preempt you to it - it's like having a smart, digital PA around.
  • Once you've house-trained Gandelf your Inbox will run pretty smoothly - and on autopilot!

In hindsight this was really a logical step forward since G+ took off. Just take a look at the amount of G+ notifications that have flooded your inbox prior to the rollout of the New Gmail and you know that something's got to be done before this deluge swamps users. (You can turn off notifications or receive less but you might also be one of those who prefer to collect all these in one mailbox where you can quickly scan to find the ones that really interest you). Good on Gmail for having the foresight and the resources to tackle a 'problem' that they and the rest of social media have contributed to.

In my view it's a case of evolving to meet new challenges when a need becomes apparent to keep a service user-friendly. There's some speculation that the move is designed to pave the way for more ads to be served but a free service has to fund itself somehow and so far the ads have been unobtrusive and within reason, unlike some other services where the ads are so huge and persistently and annoyingly in your face that they actually drive users away - pronto!





POST NOTE:

Following this post there were two sponsored ads the next day which appeared in the 'Promotions' tab. This made it easy to find and delete as well. If you are worried that your newsletters will end up this way here are ...

Several measures you could try to ensure your mail is filed under the right category:
  1. Address your reader by name, at least by their first name - this will help to personalise your mail and also signal to Gandelf that it is not a 'promotion',
  2. Avoid advertising-type of titles or titles which suggest that the content will be promotional.
  3. Educate your readers to look for your newsletters and to fish them out of 'Promotions',
  4. Advise them to change back to their no-tab inbox (the one-column format prior to the changes),
  5. Deliver high quality content so that your readers will look out for and prevent your mail from going into the 'promotions' category or from being binned (this would the best bet for a newsletter's 'survival' - in any circumstance. Have you ever noticed yourself looking for an update or news that you've come to anticipate because they've provided consistent value over time?).
  6. Or do all or most of the above - even just tackling the measures under your control will increase the 'survival' rate of your newsletter (and your business).
  7. Yet again the focus is on quality content.  It's hard to err in whatever you do, if you bring to your business a needle-sharp, customer-centric focus, that promises to be stickier than superglue. That builds trust and a faithful following, who won't mind when you do send them (some) promotional stuff. Just don't blitz them with ads ... day and night!
  8. Btw don't forget images when you review your content - attractive images attract more readers and ultimately the increase in traffic will lead to greater conversions.  Just ensure they are relevant. If not, omit because it's better than confusing your readers. While you may not necessarily wish to include many or large images in your newsletter (where less is more), the right image in the right context, can play a role in pulling more readers to your blog or webs. Images definitely have a useful role on your webs - this is especially true for some types of niches more so than others which means one can capitalise, albeit carefully, on this fact.

......................................

SEO, Social Media Resources to Make Your Life Easier & More Profitable:

'Has your website received an Unnatural Links Penalty from Google? Having trouble getting it removed? The book, written by Dr. Marie Haynes is a step-by-step guide to what you need to do to recover from an unnatural links penalty.'

'M/Submitter Spins And Submits Your Articles, Videos, Blogs, And Press Releases To Over 500 Sites And Gives You 1000’s Of Backlinks Automatically…. Plus You Can Instantly Add 100’s Of Additional Sites' > The Power to Dominate Social Media and all Search Engines on Autopilot
 


Tuesday, 13 August 2013

How to Add Sections and MORE CONTENT to Your YouTube Home Page:

I released this video in April and found it was quite useful for many people on Youtube so here it is as well so more people can find it too. 

Note: this is one way that you can recycle your content. When you have invested time and effort into producing content make sure you maximise your return on ALL your content (past and present) by posting it ... everywhere! Go through all your past content and check to see if you have utilised and maximised their exposure. It's your (original and unique) content and that's what search engines love.  So go ahead, claim authorship and get credit for your original and unique content. Don't let it go to seed!

Even if it does not become viral your video content has a better stab at longevity than posts you make on other social media feeds. On the whole many videos on Youtube seem to have a longer shelf life.  So recycle and post away!  Personally I find that posting videos on Youtube is good value for your time and effort because they enjoy a longer shelf life and wider distribution than other social alternatives. It gives a better ROI of your time and effort.  Note that your ROI will depend on what your criteria is - success can be eg. the number of views/ hits, opt-ins, leads, pre-sales, enquiries, etc. and not necessarily outright 'sales' per se.

How to Add more Sections and Content to Your Youtube Home Page


The "ADD SECTION" on your Home Page is a very versatile feature of the 'New' Youtube One Channel's latest format.

You can now add all kinds of content to your Home Page based on many criteria - from 'likes', 'most popular, 'recent posts', 'recent archives', tags (you could create any kind of tags - the sky's the limit).

Creating a Section is similar to creating previous playlists except now you have much more choice as to how you are going to organise your (video) content for each section.  You can create a section: 
  • consisting of one or several playlists, or
  • consisting of one only or more videos (select your videos via their url) or
  • a collection of videos, based on their common tags, etc. or
  • if you are savvy in organising your tags you can 'section' a particular video many times over based on different tags, thereby gaining more exposure for that video or playlist. Try it and test!
  • or create a Section then give it a great (your desired keyword) TITLE.
Tags are useful to quickly identify categories of videos so tag away for easy access and to be found. When people find one video all the ones tagged identically will also be found if you SECTION these videos together under 'One Roof'.

Good for SEO?

Probably - the TAG description appears at the TOP of the playlist as your Section's TITLE!
Search engines can hardly miss this keyword beacon. Youtube as you know is a search engine and the third largest search engine to date...and getting bigger!

So go ahead and spend some time planning your new sections and the kind of keywords you would like to use for them.  Here's to more easy, free traffic!



Tuesday, 16 July 2013

TIP for Quick POSTING VIDEOS to Your Google+ Profile or Page

Hi Guys, just a quick tip that I found useful:

When you post videos from Youtube to your Google+ profile or page, use the "link" feature instead of the "video" feature because it has the same effect and will save you a couple of clicks. Your video especially if it has a nice custom cover will show up prominently on the newsfeed.

And the bonus: You don't have to navigate away from your Post box on Google+ because the URL box appears below where you would type in your notation, description or story. 


http://surgeyourprofits.blogspot.com


 However if you do not have the video URL handy and have to search Youtube then use the "video" button because it works a treat this way too.


http://surgeyourprofits.blogspot.com


http://surgeyourprofits.blogspot.com


Just in case you are wondering where these buttons are located? Check out this image and navigate to your 'POST' Tab if you're not there already:


http://surgeyourprofits.blogspot.com


That's it for the day guys, just thought I would drop this tip off before I dash out the door!


Remove Delta Search Redirect (Delta Toolbar & Search Engine) from Your PC

Remove Delta, Hijacking Search or Tool Bar or Other Unwelcome App 'Guests' from Your PC:

Is your search hijacked by pesky 'Delta search or Delta toolbar, aka Yontoo or Babylon search or Whitesmoke? or Delta Visual Toolbar for Chrome?

You didn't download this, it most probably sneaked in during "updates" and add-ons to your browser or comes bundled with 'free'ware unannounced, even from reputable, tech sites such as cnet. You have to be observant and untick or by default you could end up downloading unwanted components such as annoying disk-drive scanning apps (because these malware appear at every boot-up), etc. along with your antivirus and other software.

You can try to disable via your Firefox browser first by going into Tools / Addons or you can go into Firefox's hidden settings if this is not possible, using the "about:config" command:

  • Undo Delta via "about.config" in Firefox.  This is Firefox's hidden settings: Type "about.config" into the URL window of your navigation toolbar.  When you type this into your Firefox browser this is what you will see:
http://surgeyourprofits.blogspot.com

Be careful when you do this as you can wreak havoc if you don't know what you are doing. But if you need to get in there to tweak settings as required by Tech Support, you know how to get to it.

  • Most likely the Delta hijacker search tool has hidden away in your registry so you need to go into Control Panel to clean it out.  Go to Control Panel via your 'Start' button, then 'Programs and Features' where you can change, repair or uninstall - choose the latter. See the diagram below:



Yes, I had that pesky Babylon Search Tool hiding in my pc! Your system will announce within seconds when it has finished uninstalling. Reboot when you finish so your antivirus, etc. gets updated. 

Save all your bookmarks and history settings before you start adjusting, resetting or restoring default browser settings.

Use a Trusted Source to check that there are no malicious software hidden in your computer!


Thursday, 4 July 2013

How to WRITE FAST when you WRITE CONTENT


Summary: Speed writing - How to write fast when you create content.



Is content creation taking up too much time?

Here are some tips on how you can write content fast.

The Process:


First of all time yourself.
Then outline the structure of your article:

  1. Title - eg. 'Tips about how to write"
  2. Description summary
  3. Introduction
  4. Body - eg. the actual tips  
      • - what to write
      • - how to write it
      • - when to edit
      • - your experience
      •           - important points to discuss
     
  5. Conclusion 

Write furiously - do not edit or ponder; just write what comes into your head about the subject you have chosen.

Allocate a time-frame, that is, assign a block of time, say 30 minutes, to complete this project.

Break this down into smaller units, eg., X-minute blocks for each section of writing. For example, if you have 3 sections to write about, allocate 8 minutes to each block.

Use the last 6 minutes to edit and polish your article.

Do this consistently and you will find you can produce content on the fly that is good enough to publish.

Remember it is not a fancy, 9-page report you are aiming for but content for your readers and social media followers - information that your fans have come to expect from you regularly.

It does not need to be a large chunk of information either - just good useful points or insights that your niche readers would find interesting.

After writing it you don't have to publish straightaway.  If you can delay for a couple of hours or the next day, you will find more clarity in your thinking or reasoning, and/or more insights to add to your article.

To complete your article add some attractive images.  Make these relevant to your discussion.  I struggle to see the connection between articles and their images sometimes but then again I find great articles with bulls-eye illustrations - more kudos to their publishers.  It's better to exclude an image if it makes no sense at all than to include it just because it's there or because you can!  Some people use 'abstract' art, but not so abstract that we have to do all the imagining. That leads to mental fatigue!! Consumers want everything these days, especially eye-candy ... just make it highly relevant!  Then watch your cheer-leaders run off to pin and spread your stuff - without any prompting from you.

 Practice Makes Perfect:


Feel free to voice your own opinion.  Don't be constrained by feeling the need to be politically right. Speaking your mind makes your blog unique and writing allows you to develop and establish your unique voice, which will in turn help you to establish yourself as an authority.  So go ahead and write, for your blog and other blogs  - the more you write, the faster you develop your style - and now you can also write fast!

And there's a bonus for your writing - recognition for your authorship by Google which is bound to confer many extra advantages to you and your site.

"Google is piloting the display of author information in search results to help users discover great content.,,"


http://surgeyourprofits.blogspot.com


Note that you don't have to write a treatise.  Take a cue from some guest bloggers who post only medium to small articles.  Some posts are no more than a few lines. You don't need to look for huge events to write about, instead discuss ordinary events that are relevant if they have inspired or made an impact on you or on your industry.  Refrain from rehashing other people's content or paraphrasing verbatim as that does little for your readers because you offer nothing new, more or different.

You can however add value to an article if you make your own observations, share some incisive insights and generally put your own spin on it with your unique voice and opinions, to own the day.

Home On the Range:


You may wonder that with the rise and rise of video the written word is dead or dying but that is not the case as not everyone has access to video or want to watch video especially in places where broadband is not widely available.

And even where broadband accessibility is not an issue, there are those who prefer the written word not to mention that written articles on a blog or website give your brand a greater stab at longevity than snippets of mayfly-content* released on a social newsfeed.

Last but not least, writing for your blog gives your authorship a permanent home ... where customers graze and search engines roam. Writing faster so you can write more enables you to arrive home sooner.

No need to wait for posthumous recognition for your authorship because Google wants to give it to you ... now!

Happy July 4th Guys! And thanks for visiting.

"Fireworks Culminate July 4th Celebration in DC" 

 

Footnote: * - short-lived content

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