Work is a rubber ball

MP900341464“Imagine life as a game in which you are juggling five balls in the air. You name them – work, family, health, friends and spirit – and you’re keeping all of these in the air at the same time.

You will soon understand that work is a RUBBER ball. If you drop it, it will bounce back. But the other four balls – family, health, friends and spirit – are made of glass. If you drop one of these, they will be irrevocably scuffed, marked, nicked, damaged or even shattered. They will never be the same.

You must understand that and strive for balance in your life.”

Brian Dyson, CEO of Coca Cola Enterprises

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Advertising: Pay-Per-Click Search Engine Advertising

Search engine advertising is a very common and highly-targeted method to drive traffic. Search engine advertising works by purchasing ad space on a search engine like Google or Yahoo and paying each time someone clicks on your ad.

The Largest PPC (pay per click) Opportunities Are At:

  • Google Adwords
  • Yahoo Search Marketing
  • Microsoft adCenter

There are smaller pay-per-click engines that promote themselves as being less expensive, but generally speaking, it’s harder to get a decent amount of traffic. Typically traffic from the Google and Yahoo often converts better.

PPC works by showing your advertisement whenever someone searches for keywords you specify as relevant to your ad or business. Your ads can appear above and beside the search results on a search engine and are generally marked as ads or “Sponsored Results”.

As an example, if you have a business website where you sell dance clothes, shoes, videos and accessories. You might choose a keyword phrase like “ballet shoes” and create ads directly related to those keywords.

When someone searches for “ballet shoes” your ad will appear alongside the search engine results. When the visitor click on it, you pay for their click and they’re taken to the URL you designated with the advertisement. Then, if your sales copy works – you make a sale.

PPC is a recommended advertising method because it is highly trackable and easily modifiable. IF you find the keywords “ballet shoes” aren’t generating the results you want, you can modify the keywords to “girls ballet shoes” or “pink ballet shoes”. Plus, you can advertise for as many keyword phrases you’d like.

The downside of PPC is some highly competitive keywords can be very expensive. And that’s why you have to be very careful with knowing your conversion rate and tracking your ROI. Additionally, unless your keywords are highly targeted and your sales copy converts you can end up spending a lot of money for little or no sales. But these are all things within your control.

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Article Marketing – Resource Box

The resource box is the conclusion of the article. More importantly, it is also the place where the backlink is contained, and for this reason, some people often describe it as the most important part of the article.

Since the focal point of the resource box is getting people to actually click the backlink, it is essentially a call to action. After the reader has been guided through the bulk of the article, and presold to as much an extent as is possible regarding what your backlink has to offer, he should find a clear course of action in the resource box.

Commonly, a resource box might contain something like: “If you want more information, just visit http://www.yoursite.com.”

Although that is a call to action, it isn’t a very good one. Imagine how much better it would be if it was more like: “If you want to learn more, there is this great eBook that’ll make you practically an expert, and it is up for grabs FREE at http://www.yoursite.com.”

By adding the incentive, the call to action will appeal to the reader all the more. Of course, it doesn’t have to be a free eBook, any incentive would work fine. It could just as easily be discounts, special offers, or even just content that is of interest.

At the end of the day, the important part is that the reader be given some reason, any reason, to want to click your backlink. That should be the conclusion to your article; the logical next step of continuing through the backlink.

Following these few pointers should get you both and article body and resource box that is much more effective than the regular variety.

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Article Marketing

Article marketing is an exceptional technique at generating a flood of high quality back links to your website quickly and easily. All you really need to get started create 10-15 articles that combine your keywords within the titles of each article as well as the actual content.

Most of the article directories have tremendous authority with Google and other search engines, so articles submitted to these sites can end up ranking high very easily, especially for less competitive keyword phrases.

A lot of this value is passed on to the sites that are linked to from the articles, so these can be extremely valuable and powerful backlinks. For this reason, you should be careful not to abuse the directories.

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Always have a client attraction plan, even when you’re busy

Don’t wait until you NEED clients to start trying to attract them…but it can be too late by then. You constantly want new potential clients coming your way. If you’re plate is full, you can put them on a waiting list (and ironically, a waiting list can make you seem more attractive to your prospect)…or, if applicable, you can put together a group session where you can serve a number of clients together.

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Hide your desperation

I know it sounds harsh, but many prospects can smell a desperate business owner from a mile away. Prospects don’t want to feel like they’re being forced into a sale and they may question the quality of your service if you seem desperate for clients. If you’ve already contacted a prospect a suitable number of times and they’ve failed to respond….let it be. Always remember that they have the choice to do business with you.

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Use a variety of contact methods

Depending on personality and habit, people use some correspondence methods more than others. Don’t put all your eggs in one basket and assume that everyone prefers to use email. If you have prospects’ names, physical addresses, telephone numbers and email addresses on hand, use them. You can regularly change your method of contact so that they’re reminded of your business and its availability to serve them.

That said, if your preferred method of communication is email, for example and you prefer not to work via telephone – don’t be afraid to stick by that. This is just another one of those things that will connect you your ideal client who likes to communicate in the same manner you do.

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Share case studies…offer big promises

‘Clients don’t want to work with you if you’re only so-so at what you do. Wow your clients with case studies of your current clients, testimonials and show them EXACTLY what you can potentially do for them. Never be mediocre when you can be great!

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Partner with competing businesses

Sure, it may sound a little crazy at first, but this can be a very effective tactic for generating business. It can actually end up helping both you profit. Many competing businesses choose to partner and create a single, new service and/or service and/or product or services together. When one business sells the service and/or service and/or product, the other gets a cut of the profit. You can also gain exposure on the other’s website or even strike deals to access their client base.

 

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Send out promotions or samples

Prospects like promotions and they really like free samples. Basically, if a prospect thinks that they’re getting a good opportunity to try you out, you’re already well on your way to making them a full-fledged client. Consider offering a special promotion for “new clients” to get them to try your service or simply offer free sample service and/or service and/or products if your business deals with physical items.

Just be careful with giving away the farm…if you offer a labor-intensive service, be careful with what you offer for free. You can give out free reports, workbooks, and checklists or set up a group teleclass instead of directly giving your free time to individuals.

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