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Have you ever walked into a store in your town, and been addressed by name? This has probably happened to you at stores that you frequent often. The shop owner knows your name, and uses it. He remembers you, and he wants you to know that he cared enough about you and your business to remember you. In the offline world, this is just one aspect of customer support.Customer service like this is almost impossible to achieve on the Internet, but some semblance of it can exist ...

Personalizing Autoresponders

Personalizing AutorespondersHave you ever walked into a store in your town, and been addressed by name? This has probably happened to you at stores that you frequent often. The shop owner knows your name, and uses it. He remembers you, and he wants you to know that he cared enough about you and your business to remember you. In the offline world, this is just one aspect of customer support.Customer service like this is almost impossible to achieve on the Internet, but some semblance of it can exist when you personalize your autoresponder messages. Autoresponder messages can be set up to address people by their first or last name or both. In fact, there is quite a bit of personalized information that can be added, depending on the autoresponder that you are using.The information is included in the autoresponder messages by using codes. Each autoresponder will use different codes to insert the information in your messages. You simply write your message, and put the codes where you want the personalized information to appear. For instance, your message may start out with Hello (code for first name)! In this case, the persons first name will be inserted where that code is.Personalizing your autoresponder messages will most likely improve your response rate. Research has shown that emails that are personalized with the persons first name are opened more often, and those people are generally more receptive to the contents of the email message. It is usually very easy to do. You write one message, using the codes where you want the personalization, then, no matter who that one email is sent out to, their personal information will appear where the codes are.Of course, the autoresponder must collect the information first. This is done with the use of forms that activate the autoresponder. For instance, if you are giving away a free ebook, and you have your visitor fill out a form with their email address to receive the download instructions for the ebook by email, that form should collect any type of information that you want for personalization such as a first name, as well as the email address. If that information is not collected, the autoresponder wont have anything to insert where that code appears in your messages!Take a look around the control panel of your autoresponder, and find out what type of personalization you can add to your autoresponder messages. You may be very surprised at the improved results!

Use article marketing to drive traffic to your site

Use article marketing to drive traffic to your site

The net marketing picture has shifted rapidly in the past couple of years with the ongoing development of Web 2.0 applications. However, article marketing remains, without a doubt, one of fastest and painless ways to drive traffic to your internet site.If you have a web site or a web-based product that you want to advertise, article marketing can help you on many fronts. Not only will it drive traffic directly to your internet site, it will also help your site get a high page ranking among the search engines.Basically, it works like this. You publish an article that is associated to your website or your product and submit it to a number of websites known as article directories. Your article will be posted here and will be free to use for anyone who wants to release it on the web.So how do you benefit from this? At the bottom of any article you submit a paragraph, known as a resource box, that briefly describes you or your business, and contains a link to your website. This must appear on any website that chooses to publish your article, potentially attracting thousands of visitors to your site.As you might expect, the better the article, the more likely it is to be published so it is worth taking the time to write an article that is genuinely interesting, informative or entertaining.You should also spend some time working on the text in your resource box so that it encourages readers to click on the link to your website. Once they do, you can offer them your products and services, or even a freebie so that you can gather email addresses and build a mailing list.Keep it simpleFor many web entrepreneurs, writing articles will only be a small part of their business, while many will not have written before. It is, of course, possible to farm this work out to a professional writer. However, if this is beyond your budget you should be able to master the art of article writing with a little practice.The first rule of marketing article writing is to play to your strengths. Write about something you know about and try to provide information that potential visitors to your website will want to read. If your website sells car parts, write about a related subject, preferably something that you are enthusiastic about. Also, 'how to' articles are particularly popular. If you can show a reader how to complete a task in 500 or so words you are on to a winner.HeadlinesThe most important part of any article is the headline. If your headline fails to catch the interest of the reader all your efforts will have been in vain. It is a good idea to write a few headlines, not just one. Also, once you have written a few headlines put them aside and come back to them the next day with a fresh eye. This will help you choose which is the best one.Any headline you write should be short and snappy, and encourage the reader to click through to the article. There are a few tricks you can use to grab the reader's attention. One is to play to people's desires and offer a solution. Examples of this could be:How to find the perfect partnerHow to make a million dollarsNo one article would show a reader to achieve these things, but you get the idea. Headlines that offer to show a reader how to achieve something in easy steps also lead to a good click through rate. So, these could be something like:10 top tips for finding your perfect match5 easy steps to becoming a millionaireAs you submit more and more articles, you will get a better idea of what is working for you both in terms of headlines and content.Submitting articlesThere are thousands of article directories on the internet. Some of these accept articles on any subject, while others focus on niche areas. At the beginning, at least, it is probably best to stick to the bigger ones where you know there will be a good amount of traffic. A quick Google search will show you which ones to look for.Article submission is a fairly simple process. You just need to register with the website and input your articles along with a summary. You will also need to enter keywords. Choose these carefully so that website owners looking for content can actually find your articles.Article submission can be time consuming, so if you are submitting to a large number of directories you may want to consider an article submission service or software. However, be sure to choose a good one as many directories can reject automatic submissions.

Banner Design: Do It Like a Pro

Banner Design: Do It Like a Pro

Imagine this - you were talking to your friend about a new product launched by an already established company in the market. You learned about this new product when you were surfing the net but the problem is you cannot remember the name of the product. You tried every possible way you can think of to remember that name but your brain wont cooperate. And then you remember seeing this leaf-like image that you are sure has got something to do with the companys name. And then something ignited in your brain and then BOOM! In a split second you remembered the name of the company and its new product. Amazing isnt it that a simple image left embedded in your mind can help you remember the name that you are searching for. Well, it is probably for this reason that business owners have to put extra effort in designing and choosing their promotional materials. Banners are promotional materials that can help effectively market your company and its products and services. Most businesses need a good banner because it is what your target customers will see mostly when they are getting familiar with your products. Banners create name recognition, hence when designing your banner it is essential to remember that banner design is not only about graphic creation. There is more than design to banner creation. An effective banner is not only about color, text or images. Effective banners combine quality graphics with special working elements to create exceptional and productive banners. By far, banner marketing is the most widespread in the Internet. When you have the right elements, banners can be a good way to make customers interested in what you have to offer. Here are a few tips and tricks to make that banner really interesting. First off, conceptualize. As with any advertising material, you must start with a great concept to help you produce a banner that will clearly communicate your products and services. It is important that when you conceptualize you take into consideration your customers. Your banner should be able to speak to them and recognize their needs and desires. And again keep the design simple. Remember that simple is always better. As much as possible dont crowd your designs. Leave a space for your customer to use their imagination. Leaving something for your customer to think about can be a good tactic to make them interested. You can also use colors or styles that are in contrast with your design. This way you can effectively entice curiosity to every individual that sees your banner. Additionally, make sure that your banner can be easily read and understood by the reader. Since a reader would typically spend only a few seconds before deciding whether to check out your products or move on, it is important that your banner is concise, simple and legible. On a final note, be consistent and relevant; consistent in terms of building your brand and relevant when dealing with your customers. Sometimes when developing your banner concepts you tend to forget abut your customers. Remember that you are creating your banner for your customers so keep them always upfront and make propositions that address their needs and desires. So take advantage of the opportunity to create a relationship with your customers by offering them relevant, captivating and effective advertising tool. Once you have come up with good banner designs you would be surprised with what it can do to boost your business.

How A Ghost With A Blue Ball Can Boost Online Marketing

How A Ghost With A Blue Ball Can Boost Online Marketing

What does online marketing have to do with a ghost? Plenty. Read this and you will see why. The memory still unsettles me whenever I think back to that night.The experience taught me that to write about a product, you have to see it at work. You will see how this can help you, also. But first, here is what happened that night.It was November - almost 3 years ago. My friend and client, Guido, asked me to write a sales letter and a couple of ads for him. He ran a ghost busting business.It struck me as hard to make money chasing ghosts out of peoples houses but he made a good living. Guido convinced me that I had to get a feel for his business. So, he asked me to accompany him on a job.I agreed and found myself the following Thursday night with him and his girlfriend, Erin, in the home of an art gallery owner. The owner and his family were away and the place smelled of stale smoke and chrysanthemums. We were alone or almost alone.The ghost, Guido explained, was a child who had died in the house 60 years before. He would come back looking for toys. Guido led us to the dining room where he set up his equipment. The only toy I saw was a blue ball under the sideboard that belonged to the owners young son.Guido half opened the door leading to the cellar and turned out the lights. We sat on the floor in the dark wearing night-vision goggles and waited.It happened a little after 1 a.m. The blue ball hurtled from under the sideboard, hit the table leg and bounced back. I heard a click from Guidos equipment and the ball stopped short. After a few minutes of stillness, the ball darted forth again. This time, it zigzagged along the wall.Erin and I exchanged a quick glance and I strained to see what was causing the ball to move. I could only imagine some unseen little feet kicking it and scurrying after it. Again, Guidos equipment clicked and kept on clicking. The ball rolled out the cellar door and bounced down the steps.It was over.Guido didnt explain how he did it, but assured us the little ghost would not be back - ever. I ran my hand over the bare floor where the ball had been. I was feeling for wires or string, suspecting that Guido had rigged the whole thing. But I found nothing.I didnt go to bed when I got home. Instead, I wrote an account of the ghost. I also wrote the sales letter and ads for Guido. The words rolled off my fingertips like raindrops. I set the scene of what it was like to be in the same room with a ghost.In writing about Guidos service, I tried to make the readers feel the same things I had. I brought all my senses into it touch, smell, hearing, sight and taste.I learned another lesson from that experience that may help you. The lesson is this: write the sales letter for your "online marketing" right after you see the product at work. That makes your words fresh and urgent.Oh, and about the little ghost: Guido told me he didnt stay in the cellar. He disappeared and Guido knows in his heart that some loving arms welcomed him back into that in-between world that ghosts call home.

What Not To Do With Your Business Cards!

Different from most of our articles telling you what to do with your business cards, in this article we will discuss the "business card" No-No's:Things to avoid doing with your business cards:- Do not use 'free business cards'. There are a few companies around offering FREE business cards (by putting their logo on the back of your card). This is a priceless way for them to promote their company through you and your new business cards. Unfortunately there are very little benefits for you. While you may get free business cards, these business card will more than likely give the impression of cheapness and amateurness - not being able to afford proper business cards. Would you wear a free business suit that had a mcdonald's logo on the back? If no, then don't do the same with your advertising cardss.- Do not use a template. There are a number of online "advertising cards" shops that offer templates for advertising cardss. Choose a template, enter your contact details, order your advertising cardss. While it may sound easy, you will get a generic advertising cards, that does not use any clever advertising cards marketing techniques and will do nothing 'extra' to promote your business. Be unique and get a custom design done that highlights your business and can be used as an effective marketing tool.- Do not make a magnifying glass a necessity for reading your advertising cards. Not everyone can boost having 20/20 vision. Consider this large percentage of people when you are designing your advertising cards and try to make the text readable by the majority of readers.- Do not use colors that clash. Choose colors wisely. Colors used with other colors can sometimes clash and become an eyesore and difficult to read or look at. Some colors go together and some colors don't. Do your homework and find a color wheel or a color matcher/chooser online to help you find compatible and eye pleasing matching colors.- Do not use some else's advertising cards or a corrected [*_*]. Scribbling your details over your old details or on someone else's [*_*] and then giving to someone could reflect very badly on you and your company. Doing this could give the bad impression of being cheap and not being professional. Make sure you have enough of your own [*_*]s and if you do not have your own, get them!- Do not forget to proof read your [*_*] before printing. Having the wrong information on your [*_*]s can be misleading and can result in lost business. Proofread your [*_*] details before you submit them. Double check, triple check, make sure 100% before printing that the details are correct. This simple thing could save a lot of money if you can avoid needing to reprint 1000's of [*_*]s with the wrong information.- Do not print your [*_*]s larger than standard size. I have seen [*_*]s that are printed larger than normal as the people maybe looking to make their cards stand out and make them more memorable. While this may sound like a good idea, it could result in your card not being able to fit into [*_*] filing systems or easily into wallets. This is best avoided, so stick to standard or smaller sizes.- Do not neglect the material and paper that your cards are printed on. A lot of attention is paid to the design and colors of a [*_*] and the same attention should be paid to the paper and coating. Thin papers give the impression of cheapness and leave them vulnerable to wear and environmental factors. Choosing good paper of at least 250GSM together with either a laminate or some kind of coating will ensure that your cards last a long time and give the right impression.- Do not print your [*_*]s yourself. While not always the case, we see far too many amateurish home printed cards which give nothing but a bad impression to the receiver. Getting your [*_*]s printed professionally is not expensive and the difference in results in most cases will be a world apart.

The Advantages of Demographic Report Data in Your Marketing Plan

Demographic information is easily accessible and it is based on information collected by the Census Bureau. If you are conducting research to start a new business or to enhance your marketing strategies then you should use this information to your advantage. It will help to ensure your efforts are going to be a success with your target market. Failing to use demographic report data can cost you time, money, and sales.There is a significant amount of data you will be able to use for your marketing plan with a demographic report. It is going to tell you the ages of the people in that area, their level of education, and their income range. What you are marketing has to be something that these people are going to want. Taking their demographic information into account can help you find the right way to promote it by appealing to their emotions.Rather than investing your time and money in a new business, opening the doors, and no one comes, you need to use the demographic information that is available. It will provide you with significant information on the trends and lifestyle of those in the area. This is even more important if your business sells goods or services that are considered to be luxuries instead of necessities. If the demographics tell you this is an extremely poor area then chances are not too many people will be coming to purchase what you have to offer in that area. This is why you find certain types of businesses are able to thrive in any given location. They have the demographic information and they use it for effective marketing strategies. You will also find that some locations have one failed business after another. This isnt due to a lack of skills or dedication on the part of the business owner. The fact is that the demographics of the area just arent parallel to the types of businesses being offered.The use of demographic report data for marketing purposes has declined in recent years due to the popularity of online businesses. Since they are selling goods and services on a global scale, it doesnt matter about the demographics because they arent selling in a particular area. They can sell it to someone that is 100 miles away or 10,000. However, for traditional businesses that rely on people in the area being able to come in to make a purchase this type of information is very important. Starbucks is one of the leaders in the coffee industry. You may have noticed that their locations are always extremely busy.One of the main reasons for this is that they engage in demographic report data analysis. They know the age group of those that are likely to drink coffee and they know the locations where those in that age group are likely to work. These are heavy foot traffic areas too so they can get sales from people going to work or taking a walk on a daily basis.

Summary

Have you ever walked into a store in your town, and been addressed by name? This has probably happened to you at stores that you frequent often. The shop owner knows your name, and uses it. He remembers you, and he wants you to know that he cared enough about you and your business to remember you. In the offline world, this is just one aspect of customer support.Customer service like this is almost impossible to achieve on the Internet, but some semblance of it can exist ...