Starting up and running a small business is not easy.
Even if you have all the knowledge and skills you need, it still takes a ton of time and effort to give the required attention to all parts of your business.
For most businesses, getting a website created from scratch is a waste of time and money. Instead of spending thousands of dollars and weeks having one created from scratch, you can use WordPress.
t as you start marketing and sales, you’ll realize that you need even more help.
This is where WordPress plugins come in.
Plugins are built to make your life easier. They make difficult tasks simple and tedious tasks automatic.
Read The Full Article here on
by BRITTANY BERGER published on The Next Web
Your influencer campaign is so close to the official kickoff. You’ve built your strategy and, thanks to some influencer research, your targets have been acquired. Get ready, because it’s finally time to make your move.
Time to send some outreach emails! This is where it starts to get really fun.
This is where planning comes to a close and you’re getting closer to launch. It’s time to go down the list you made after reading last week’s post, and start reaching out to the people on it.
It seems simple, but you quickly realize it’s not. At least one target will have an email address you can’t find anywhere. Another will respond immediately, super excited to get started – never to be heard from again.
Things can get hectic really quickly.
That’s why it’s so important to have a great arsenal of tools to turn to. Some will do heavy lifting for you, while others just keep you organized. And others will be crazy simple yet save you hours of time.
Have I sufficiently hyped these tools yet? Yes? Great – now that you’re curious, let’s move on to the list!
Part 1: Finding influencers’ contact information
Influencer research frequently leaves you with a list of names, websites, Twitter handles, etc. But actual email addresses can be hard to find. These tools will be a lifesaver, I promise you.
If you know the company or website of someone you’re reaching out to, just type it into EmailHunter.co. It will look around online for all the emails associated with that domain. Once it’s done, it’ll spit out a nice little (or big) list, and you just look for the name or department you need to contact!
I like EmailHunter because you don’t need to know much about a company to use it. For example, say you want a quote from a company’s marketing department – but don’t have names. Search for the company and you’ll probably find a group email like firstname.lastname@example.org. You can use that instead of a name, if need be.
Rapportive isn’t technically for finding emails, but it’s still really easy to do so. It’s a plugin that brings up a panel in Gmail showing you information on the person you’re communicating with. Things like their interests, job, LinkedIn profile, and any shared connections.
If you can find the email address of anyone at the company (through a press release, LinkedIn profile, etc.), then you already know the structure. If not, try some of the common formats, like:
First name (i.e. barney@GNB.com)
First name + last name (barneystinson@GNB.com)
First initial + last name (bstinson@GNB.com).
You’ll know you’ve found the right address when Rapportive can pull in profile data. And it will be legendary. (Okay, that might be exaggerating. But we are emailing Barney Stinson here).
At one point, if you can’t find someone’s email, it becomes counterproductive to keep looking. Yes, you’ll finally be able to reach them. But how many other people would you have been able to contact in the amount of time it took to find their email?
With a very quick trick, you can send them a LinkedIn message instead. You can send a message to any member of a LinkedIn group you’re also a member of. So head over to their profile. If you’re in the same industry, you might have groups in common already. If so, you’re good to go and should be able to message them from their profile. If not, look for a group they’re a part of that sounds interesting (you shouldn’t just join, send the message, and leave), and wait for your membership to be approved.
Once you’re a group member, you’ll be able to message them – either to pitch them there or briefly introduce yourself and ask for a better way to reach them (such as email).
Part 2: Contacting influencers
Email addresses: acquired. Sweet! Now it’s time to start sending some messages. But if you’re planning on writing new pitches, tasks, and follow-ups from scratch for every influencer, I hope you’re ready to give up sleep. Instead, use some of these tools.
I had trouble deciding where to put Sidekick – it can do so much that it would work in any section of this post. An email plugin from the folks at HubSpot, it both tracks email engagement (clicks and opens) and shows you a brief profile of who you’re emailing.
Because of that profile showing you the background info and social profiles connected to an address, it makes guessing emails really easy. You would use it the same way as Rapportive. But aside from that, it tells you which influencers have opened your email and clicked on any links inside.
How does this help you? It can help shape how you’re going to follow up. If someone’s opened an email a few times, clicked every link twice, and still hasn’t responded, they might not be interested. Don’t have that stop you from sending a second email, but you might want to follow-up less aggressively than with someone who hasn’t seemed to see your email at all.
Gmail’s Canned Responses
While I’m not a fan of completely canned emails, this underrated Gmail feature is the simplest way to build outreach email templates.
The meat of your outreach emails is going to be the same from influencer to influencer. That’s the part where you give them all the information they need to make a decision. The rest – your intro and signoff, personalization throughout, and things like that – you can use a fill-in-the-blank format for.
Sure, you can copy and paste from a word document, but wouldn’t it be easier to keep everything right in Gmail? This way, to insert a template, just click the down arrow in the bottom right corner of the “Compose” window, hover over “Canned Responses,” and select the template name from the “Insert” menu. It literally takes two clicks.
Influencer pitches can be long, but templates make it so that each one takes just a few seconds to customize.
Dropbox / Google Drive
Throwing a bunch of large attachments in an email for the influencer to download isn’t the best way to start off your campaign.
A lot of people are wary of attachments from people they’ve never heard from before. Plus, we’re livin’ in the future, baby. Time to embrace the cloud!
Instead of attaching documents and images to each individual email, create a shared folder in Dropbox or Google Drive, and include a link to it in your email template. This way is more polite, plus if you need to make any updates to the documents you won’t need to send a new copy. Cloud magic!
Hate when you can’t get to inbox zero? Ever have a hard time remembering to follow up on the emails you sent last week? Me too, for both counts. But FollowUpThen helps. You can use it to “snooze” emails in your inbox, as well as remind you to follow up on messages.
Here’s how it works: let’s say you wanted to send someone your initial pitch, then follow up one week later. In the first email, you could BCC “email@example.com” and receive a reminder a week later.
You can also get a lot more complicated than that, with reminders only if the person hasn’t responded, sending reminders to other people in the email thread, and recurring reminders. But FollowUpThen can also be as simple as you’d like it to be, which I love.
Part 3: Staying organized
Now that things have really kicked off, you’re going to start getting responses, participants, and lots of questions. Make sure you have a way to keep track of it all.
It’s 2015, so spreadsheet-based campaign management isn’t ideal for large campaigns or long-term efforts. But if you’re still testing the waters of influencer marketing or don’t have the budget for a CRM, Google Sheets is perfect.
Plus, there’s something to be said for simplicity and familiarity.
For example, a quick, one-off campaign with 10 contacts definitely isn’t worth shelling out dough for a monthly subscription to something. In that case, a Google Sheet shared between your team will do the trick just fine.
Your team won’t have to learn how to use another tool, remember another set of login credentials, or more your older contact lists over to a new platform.
BuzzStream is a CRM for PR and marketing, and our contact database of choice at Mention. It lets you keep track of anyone your team might be working with. You can create projects for different campaigns, but easily copy contacts from one to another for people you have ongoing partnerships with.
View your contacts by project, by website, or alphabetical order. Build outreach templates, track their performance, keep track of all emails sent / received, and set reminders to follow up.
Once an influencer has mentioned you in something, you can even attach the link to the appropriate contact and website, and you also have a place to track coverage and performance!
There’s also a Chrome plugin and Gmail integration that makes it easy to add to your database while browsing.
For someone new to the world of blogging, all the new terms being thrown around can get pretty confusing – especially if you have little to no background in computers and web development. This article will explain some of the more common terms you’re likely to come across as you start blogging. Let’s get straight to it!
What Is a Blog, Anyway?
Blog is short for “weblog” – an online log, like a diary or journal. Blogs are usually personal websites in which individuals create posts about anything from their daily life to recipes to commentaries on hot topics, but they have evolved to include use by businesses and organizations to talk about important issues or to provide expertise.
Blog posts are usually listed in reverse chronological order (that is, the most recent one is listed first). But don’t worry, you can always reorder your blog posts using built-in theme options (like changing the date) or by installing a free plugin such as Post Types Order.
Front End vs Back End
You might sometimes see the words front end and back end tossed about. The front end is the part of the website that end users (that is, site visitors) see when they visit a site.
The back end is the part where all the coding happens – or, in the blogger’s case, where the content management and website design happens. For you, the blogger, the WordPress admin is your back end. When you log into your WordPress website, you are logging into the back end of your website.
Follow the link to read the remaining article>>>
Cynthia Price 31st July 2015
Let’s be honest: Marketing has become kind of a beast. With so much data, so many new channels and so much competition out there, it can be tough for today’s marketers to determine which marketing strategies are worth trying out and which aren’t.
Not only do you need a specific set of tools to help you navigate the marketing landscape — choosing the right road map can also make or break a campaign. To get you started, here are three make-or-break areas that, when optimized, can help you along your journey to positive results — no GPS required.
Automation is an easy (and approachable) way to both save time and send more personalized messages. Can it make your next campaign? You betcha.
Related: 3 Ways Customer Data Allows for Pinpoint Marketing
The stats speak for themselves: Not only does automation boast a 119 percent higher click rate than broadcast emails, eMarketer reports that business-to-consumer marketers who take advantage of automation for everything from cart abandonment programs to birthday emails have seen conversion rates as high as 50 percent.
This article first appeared on http://www.entrepreneur.com on 31st July 2015. The image was taken from the same post and text was added by sharer of the post Virtuadmin.
by Anna Washenko
[This post first appeared on the Business2Community website on July 28, 2015]
Creating content is hard work—and juggling all those tasks and responsibilities keeps even the most seasoned professionals on their toes.
Luckily, many industry leaders have created helpful resources to make the content chaos more manageable. From top tips to eBooks, here are 14 guides that every content marketer should bookmark.
The Essentials of a Documented Content Marketing Strategy: 36 Questions to Answer
The Content Marketing Institute is a valuable resource for the industry, and this is just one of its excellent cheat sheets. If you’re getting ready to put your content strategy on paper, this guide should be required reading. It’ll help set you on the right path and improve the effectiveness of your campaigns.
The Viral Marketing Cheat Sheet
Everyone secretly hopes to have their marketing campaign go viral. While you may not be able to engineer an Internet sensation every time, KISSmetrics has analyzed the elements that go into most viral content. Even if you don’t get millions of views or shares, these ideas will still up the quality of your material.
The Content Preferences of B2B Marketers
It’s easy for B2B marketers to assume they know everything about each other. But when you want to reach your peers and encourage them to share your content, you can’t leave anything to chance. This infographic breaks down what B2B marketers are most likely to read and share so you can reach out to them in the most effective way.
Marketing Automation Success Kit
Marketing automation can yield great improvements to your team’s results, but you still need to make smart choices in how you implement these changes. With this resource from Pardot, you can streamline your automation by setting smart goals and maximizing workflow.
The Blueprint of Product Launch Marketing
Any major event at your company has a different set of marketing needs. If you’re gearing up for a product launch, this guide will help you hit all of the important points. Get all of the insights you need to build a content strategy that will keep people aware and excited about your business’ latest release.
5 Keys for Strategic Marketing-Sales Alignment
The various departments within a business need to be able to work together in order to achieve the best possible success. Get your marketing and sales teams in sync with these tips from Salesforce.
30 Things to A/B Test for Lead Generation
Many marketers are tasked with generating leads for the business. To make sure you’re on the right track, Marketo has a comprehensive list of A/B test ideas. This cheat sheet will ensure that your efforts to bring new customers into the fold aren’t just shots in the dark.
Strike a Chord: Lessons for Making Your Web Content Resonate
No matter how long you’ve been in the business, it’s worth revisiting the basics every now and then. Is the content you’re making really reaching and impacting your desired audience? Feldman Creative has the insights to make sure you’re on the right track.
The Free Templates You Need for Visual Content Design
Striking images are a must for your content. It might be the perfect photo to accompany a blog post or a PowerPoint presentation of research data. In any case, you’ll want to nail the design of your visual content, and HubSpot can help. This set of free templates can give extra pizzazz to your infographics, eBooks, and calls to action.
7 Sites for Free & Beautiful Public Domain Photos
Marketers need a constant influx of photos, but don’t always have access to an art team or a skilled photographer. Fortunately, there are sites where your team can find free and legal pictures for your business needs. Here’s a collection of seven favorite photo resources.
7 Cardinal Sins of Chartmaking
Visual representations of data should be easy to process and easy to share. To make sure that any charts in your content check those two boxes, review Visually’s list of seven common errors. From simple math mistakes to smarter choices in the display, these will help every chart to shine.
6 Social Media Templates to Save You Hours of Work
Social sharing is often a key factor of success in a content marketing plan, but it’s a big investment of time to nurture those conversations and prep posts. Being able to save some time on the tasks happening behind the scenes can be a big help to your social and marketing teams. Hootsuite has made six templates available to assist with everything from planning an editorial calendar to correctly sizing social images.
Social Media Data Cheat Sheet: What Executives Actually Want to Know
Execs always want to know about the bottom line. If your marketing strategy involves social media at all, then make sure that you collect data for these important metrics. You’ll be able to deliver the information that the higher-ups need to hear and prove your worth to the business.
Marketing Metrics That Matter
Whether you’re focused on paid search or email, make sure that you and your team cut through the vanity metrics to focus on the numbers that really matter to your performance.