In the early days of the Internet you could sell products and make money if you knew how to put an advertisement together. Marketers made money by simply advertising their products on a website.Now the rules have changed.
To have any success online marketers now have to know more than just how to market through advertising. You must know how to win friends and influence people. You must know how to write and how to connect with people.
There is no more room for excuses. You have to do both or you fail. Period.
In the new Internet marketing you have to make things happen – every day, all the time. If you advertise and then sit back and do nothing life will return the favor by giving you nothing. On the other hand, if you act you will determine what happens to you. You have to take the first step – and the last and everyone in between.
You have to plan
The first step starts where everything else starts. In the mind. You have to adopt the right mindset – a mindset of taking action and doing whatever it takes.
What comes next? Most marketers choose to set up a blog and fill it with content. Competition in cyberspace is tough and therefore it is necessary to know that the rule of the jungle applies: survival of the fittest.
Your content has to be the fittest. It has to be strong enough to attract readers. It has to be amazing.
Most of all it has to touch emotions because people are emotional beings. They get angry and frustrated. They also get happy and thankful. Your main task is to trigger positive emotions with what you write. You want them to know that your advice is amazing and that you are amazing.
The best way to do that is to help people. In a nutshell, good content is helpful content that will trigger a thank you response in their emotions. When you help someone you have made a friend.
How can you help?
You help by playing doctor. You have to sooth away pains.
As marketers we all struggle with certain aspects of our marketing. It is your job to find the pain points of other marketers and solve their problems. Finding pain points can sometimes be a research project in itself if you do not know how but a keen eye and an open ear help a lot. Go to forums on Internet marketing and see what questions they ask there. Go to Facebook groups and look at the questions there. You will soon enough find questions on how to to this and how to do that. Research those topics and turn a pain point into an epic blog post.
The question that comes to mind now is how do I create this amazing content?
The answer is really ridiculously simple. How do you do anything? Let me rephrase that. How do you do anything successfully? You work out exactly what it is you want to achieve and then you plan step by step how to get there. You plan. You work according to a plan.
Your plan should clearly state
* The topic of your post.
* A short description of the content.
* Some keywords.
* and the offer that you want to promote through your article, if any.
Then research your topic well. How do you do that?
By going to the sites of the experts. See what they write about. Go from site to site and copy the articles you find helpful and save them in a document. Understand what they say. This will be your source of reference when you start writing.
Understand your audience
Before you jump into creating your post keep in mind that the biggest force driving human action is emotion.
How does emotion enter the picture?
In order to communicate three elements have to be present. You need:
* a sender
* a message
* a receiver (or receivers).
As the content producer you are the sender and your blog visitors are the receivers.
You create a blog post by typing symbols – called letters – on a keyboard.
In order to turn the symbols into a message with meaning the receiver must read the letters one by one and blend them together into words and sentences. Of course this happens at lightning-speed in the mind unless you have really bad readers.
Once the message has been conveyed and understood what happens?
The receiver filters the message through his or her perceptions formed through education and experience and that is where emotions come into play. To use an example: If you write that the sky is green you will probably cause the reader to feel irritated or angry for wasting his time. His perception tells him it is not true.
In the same way your message can cause happiness, sadness, or excitement to name just some.
The point is: emotion comes into play in the communication process and people act on emotion. Therefore your aim should be to stir a positive emotion such as excitement or at least satisfaction with your content. You want to win friends and influence people.
Writing your post
Armed with your research material, you start writing.
Make sure your message is clear and true and your writing is free of mistakes. Your reader is doing you a favor to read it. Do not make your content hard to read or understand. You will touch the wrong nerve and that is very bad for business.
Give value. Tell your readers something valuable they do not know and help them in the process. If you have done your research well you will have found some great golden nuggets to share.
At school we learned to write essays with a title, an introduction, a body and an ending. For blog articles the roadmap is very much the same except that we also need a call to action and a picture or two.
There are some basic rules to writing well.
Keep in mind that you have to capture your readers’ attention. This you do through your headline.
A good headline has to:
* carry a promise. Promises get read.
* contain your main keyword to make it easier for the search engines to find your content.
* include adjectives, such as “amazing” or “unbeatable” to give your promise that much more impact and make it speak to emotion.
If your article is on traffic generation and your keyword is traffic then your headline should not be “Traffic generation”. It should be something like: “Proven methods to drive insanely large streams of traffic to your content”.
Why do you write a headline?
You give your article a headline for one reason: to capture attention.
If your headline does not do this, delete it and write another one.
Here it is important to use an image if you do not use one at the very top of the page under the headline. Not only does it make your writing look attractive but a picture paints a thousand words. The human brain is wired to think in images. It also reads images a lot faster than it does text. You dream in images, not in text. Images are your friends; use them freely.
They also help you reach the emotions of you reader quicker. An interesting Image can be a good eye-catcher .
The introduction should build on the headline.
You use your introduction to create interest. Here you can play with the language to bond with the reader. The introduction also builds on the promise that you created in the headline. You do not deliver on that promise yet, but you play with it in a way that creates a bond between you and the reader. You can explain why the receiving the information in the article could be life-changing for your reader. You can tell him or her that you have also struggled with the same problem but that you have found the solution and you are about to share it with them. You move closer to your reader emotionally. You want to stir curiosity. That you do in your introduction.
When you write an introduction that should radiate the same sort enthusiasm that you have painted into your headline. It should set a tone of excitement and vibrancy.
Why do you write an introduction?
Not to explain the pros and cons of your product. Introductions are more about creating common ground between you and the reader than it is about selling. It is the ideal opportunity to start building trust.
Follow your introduction with your first subheading.
Subheadings are a good place to include keywords to be friendly to the search engines. Don’t just write a subheading. Put some thinking into it. It should be something that blends into your article and serve as a hint for the reader about what is to follow. It is easy to try and find something witty and use that as a subheading, but it is not recommended. A subheading should be a change-over from one idea to another. Subheadings also serve the purpose of breaking up the content so that you don’t just present rows and rows of text to your readers.
Why do you write subheadings?
We write them not only to break up the text but also because a subheading is beneficial as far as SEO is concerned. It gives your article structure as it is a clear transition point from one thought to another.
That brings us to the body – the main part of the article.
Spread images throughout your body text. Images of people with interesting facial expressions are especially powerful as facial expression is a non-verbal aspect of communication.
Use your research material to identify the main ideas that you want to include and then write about those ideas in your own words and style. The temptation may be there simply to rewrite but you have to think like a writer. Build your own material around the ideas and facts that you have identified and write from the heart and in your own words.
Do not try simply to teach, try to connect. “Do you struggle with driving traffic as I did in the beginning? It is really heartbreaking isn’t it? Well I have some great advice.”
Emotion connects to emotion and you help the reader to live your content rather then read it.
You should have calls to action, spread throughout your article. When people are excited about what you tell them give them the opportunity to act immediately.
Great content deserves great endings. Don’t just end abruptly. Find a way to end an article in such a way that it rounds off what you have said. It must have the effect of causing the reader to nod and say, yes that is very true. I must try that. You want him of her to reflect on it for just a moment.
Place a call to action in the conclusion as well.
Once you have finished writing make very sure to read the article again and correct any mistakes. Then save your article and let it sit for two days before you read it through very carefully again. Only publish when you are very certain that the article is clean.
Marketing your content
Start your marketing campaign by flirting with the influencers.
Who are the influencers?
They are the people who have made a name for themselves in your niche. Influencers are usually great content writers and outstanding marketers and they are easy to find through a simple Google search.
What to you need from them?
They get the traffic that you want. They have the list you need. They have the knowledge you need.
A lot of people visit their websites and if your link is on there some of them will click on it and visit you. If they like your content they will optin and your list grows.
Leave comments on their sites and then visit their visitors and comment there as well.
Do not submit a post and ask them to consider it as a guest post. When you do that you ask a favor with nothing to give in return. We all know that a friend in need is a bit of a pest. If they are in need today they will probably still be in need tomorrow and they like to make their problems yours. We do not want to be seen as someone like that. First establish yourself in the industry by getting your own followers then you can negotiate from a position of strength.
Connecting with influencers is however not the beginning and end of marketing. Marketing online is a long process of getting others to like and promote your content. Of course you will have to do your bit as well. Learn how to promote to different social media and make friends there. Promote your own content as well as others on these sites.
Move your content off your site and onto places where others will see it such as social networking sites. You want it on as many places as you can get it. You want to talk to as many people as you can reach.
You may feel like you are fishing for traffic with a line but as you do this day after day you are actually creating your traffic catching net. Work with a plan. Create great content, promote it and let others promote it. That is what list building is.
As a marketer creating your list is the warm-up exercise. Once you have a good solid list, the work really begins. But that is a story for another day …