The Secrets of YouTube Marketing Success – @DottoTech

Steve-Dotto-PinterestPerhaps you know and appreciate the value of a good blog these days, but just aren’t a great wordsmith. Maybe you have a great personality but just aren’t having any luck getting that to show through on paper. Why not consider making videos instead?

But there’s a lot more involved than just creating a great video. You need to figure out how to create momentum for your video within the first 24-48 hours to give yourself a real advantage over your competitors. Finding creative and successful ways to shine a light on your content and get it out there is the key to video success. Think titles, descriptions, tags, and cross promotion, among other things.

Steve Dotto has parlayed his 15+ years of nationally syndicated TV show experience into a wildly popular YouTube channel where he continues to educate and entertain, while also focusing on helping others grow and monetize their own YouTube channels.

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Your Blogging Questions Answered – @therichbrooks

The-Rich-Brooks-PinterestWhether you’re a veteran blogger or new to the world of blogging, the same goals apply: find, reach and engage your readers, and turn them into eventual customers. You achieve this success by building your readership and email lists, for starters. But how exactly do we do that?

The Marketing Agents Podcast host, Rich Brooks, reaches into the mailbag to discuss vital aspects of blogging including; creating value for your audience, keyword research, consistency, guest blogging, promotion using various social media platforms, as well as weighing in on how much value we should really be putting on blog comments.

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How To Monetize Your Website – @ccmaine

Chrystie-Vachon-PinterestAre you one of those lucky people with a knack for spotting the next up and coming trend? Have you got a great idea but aren’t sure exactly what to do with it? Websites and blogs can not only give you a creative outlet to share your ideas, but you can make money from them, too.

Once you figure out what your niche is and who the audience is that you’re trying to reach, you need to figure out how to monetize that to ensure all this hard work pays off. And then when the fad fades or your interest moves on to something else, what do you do with the successful site that you’ve created and spent so much time building up?

Chrystie Vachon has successfully launched, built up and sold for profit multiple websites in the financial and pop culture lifestyle spaces. Her gift for trendspotting, coupled with her content marketing and social skills, have made her a successful and savvy entrepreneur.

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How Guest Blogging Builds Your Business – Kristi Hines

Kristi-HInes-PinterestA lot of small businesses don’t put enough value on guest blog posts as a way to get new traffic. Do you know how to get a guest blog gig and reap its benefits?

Do you know how to look for relevant guest blogging opportunities?

If you don’t, you’re not alone. Many small businesses don’t know why guest blog posts are useful and how to go about getting seen on an industry blog. That’s why we asked Kristi Hines, blog marketing strategist and freelance writer, in this week’s episode of The Marketing Agents Podcast.

Big Ideas:

  • You do a lot of content development for other businesses. How did that all get started?
    • The idea is to create content that will draw people (with a bigger platform than you) to your site in hopes they’ll share it.
    • I started out blogging for myself and guest blogging on sites like Social Media Examiner, and Search Engine Journal.
    • Out of the blue, one of my first clients contacted me and said they’d pay me to write for their blog.
    • I hadn’t thought about being a freelance writer and it just sort of snowballed from there.
  • It’s hard when you’re wearing so many hats, to see the value in creating content for your small business. What do you say to people with a mindset like that?
    • I always tell people that content is what people want to share.
    • If you want people to talk about your business, you have to do something awesome or you need to be creating content that people find useful.
  • What should a small business consider when they’re blogging?
    • Consider what your audience would be interested in.
    • Write what customers would want to read.
    • It should be very specific to what we’re doing but we can also write on broader topics that would appeal to most customers.
  • How do you develop a content strategy for a business?
    • Start with what that business has and what their competitors are doing.
    • I try to find a good blend of what the company can keep up with and what their competition does.
    • You don’t need to reinvent the wheel.
    • Look at what is getting comments and shares and replicate that.
    • You can make similar content but use your own voice to tell a unique story.
  • How importance is consistency? How do you deliver content on a regular basis?
    • You have to balance it.
    • What can you do and keep up with and what do your customers expect.
  • How about consistency in voice? Do multiple bloggers affect this?
    • Screen it and make sure you all have a similar voice and theories.
    • You can look at someone’s writing and know what’s going to work with your business or not.
  • How frequently should you be blogging for your business?
    • Honestly, it should be only when you can put out good content.
    • One great thing a week is better than mediocre posts every day.
  • How long should each blog post be? Is there a magic number out there that Google sees?
    • A minimum of 600 words is good. It’s a lot but not too much.
    • Your audience depends. Start off shorter and then see if a long one does well.
    • Just see what works.
  • Do you every get involved with blog post images?
    • I generally put at least one image in it because it’s great for sharing on social media.
    • I go to a stock image site or at least do a screenshot so I have something in there.
  • You’ve done some guest blogging. Can you explain what guest blogging is?
    • You basically look for sites in your industry in which your target customers would already be interested in and you see if you can submit a blog post to them.
    • It gets your name out in front of a new audience.
    • It increases your credibility.
  • Do you have any tactics for getting a guest blog post?
    • I get to know the blogger and the blog itself.
    • I interact them on Twitter and then I reach out to them and ask them if
    • I can submit a post on related things they haven’t covered yet.
  • It sounds like you got started with guest blogging. Do you think an occasional guest blogging opportunity would help small businesses get their feet wet?
    • I’ve seen some businesses do it this way but the challenge is getting a good buzz on other sites.
    • You don’t want people go to your site to find that you don’t have enough good content.
  • Matt Cutts recently said that “guest blogging is dead,” but quickly backpedaled on that a little bit. What are your thoughts on that comment?
    • I’ve seen him give some bad examples of guest blogging, but he was probably talking about crappy back linking strategies and not SEO optimized content.
  • In terms of guest blogging, what opportunities should we be looking for?
    • Usually, to qualify a site I look at how much traffic they get, how many shares, how many comments they get.
    • If a site gets little shares or comments then you’re obviously not going to get anything out of it.
    • But if you get a site with a lot of traffic and start becoming a regular contributor, then you’ll start getting traction and traffic to your site.

      You start to build a reputation, credibility and consistency with a new audience as a guest blogger who posts often.

    • Some of the bigger sites will give you return traffic on a single post, but after a few posts their audience will start to come to you because they now recognize you.
    • The exposure and return is valuable outside of the SEO.
    • If you’re looking to build inbound links, then a single post may be successful, but a doing regular posts builds credibility and traffic to your site.
    • Another strategy is to do a bunch of guest posts on a bunch of sites and try to get them launched all around the same time to grab a lot of attention.
  • Are there any content development or blog management tools you use?
    • I use really basic things.
    • I use an idea spreadsheet and I go though it when I’m ready to make a blog post.
    • There are good topic generator tools out there that auto-create headlines (but I can’t think of any off the top of my head!)
  • It sounds like you put a lot of thought into the title of your post.
    • I get more ideas that I have time to write about them, but I like to keep them all in one place because it helps me jog my memory.
  • When you’re writing your post, how much do you consider SEO?
    • My main concern is how my audience is going to react to it. Are they going to want to click on it and then share my post?
    • After I create the content I go back through it and figure out the strongest keyword to focus on.
  • Do you have any specific promotional strategies? And does it differ for your own posts versus guest posts?
    • For my own blog posts I’ll share it on Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and LinkedIn.
    • For client blogs it depends on their goals and how they want to advertise it.
    • Some clients want a ton of links, so I’ll email it to other bloggers and ask them to include it in their link roundups.
    • It really depends on what the client’s goal is though.
  • So you will spend money on promoting a post on your own blog if it gives you extra reach?
    • Yeah, definitely. The advertising on Facebook does help to increase your reach.
    • Facebook is now telling you that you have to spend money to get seen.

    Juicy Links:

    Rich Brooks
    Be my guest…blogger.

10 Social Media Tools You Can’t Live Without – Ian Cleary

Ian-Cleary-PinterestReading, commenting, sharing, and curating content isn’t always easy. Ian offers solutions to this issue.

Getting the most out of your own content, or other content can save you time and money. 

In today’s episode, we turn to social media expert Ian Cleary, who has used various social media tools to curate his content, and help his audience share theirs.

We talk about Ian’s favorite tools, WordPress plugins, and guides to help you get the most out of your content across your social media platforms.

Now, if YOUR favorite social media tool didn’t make it make it into our top ten, be sure to let us know in the comments below!

Big Ideas:

How did RazorSocial start?

  • Started as a blog focusing on social media.
  • Offered tips and how-tos on social media management tools and analytics tools.
  • Now a business that offers social media advice to other companies, as well as offering valuable content to their audience.

What are your favorite social media tools?

  • 1. Post Planner: Installed within Facebook, it helps manage page content, scheduling content, and is also a content discovery engine. You can search keywords by like or share popularity. This gives you thousands of status update ideas as well as the ability to schedule shared posts in a queue.
  • 2. & 3. Feedly w/ Buffer: Track content across many blogs. Subscribe to blogs within Feedly and then read content on your desktop or mobile device. Buffer integrates to save you time by letting you schedule content sharing at a later date.
  • 4. Social Oomph: Automate distribution of older evergreen content (content that’s still relevant despite it’s age). Use this tool to recycle your evergreen content so relevant Twitter content recycles and thus gives you a chance to pull in more audience and shares.

What are your favorite WordPress plugins?

  • 5. OptIn Monster: A pop-up that helps build your email conversions. It won’t appear unto you mouse over a specific area of intent or if you try to exit the website.
  • 6. WordPress SEO: Helps you identify what to change or edit within your posts and pages to optimize your keywords for search engines.
  • 7. Flare: Social sharing plugin that will follow user as they scroll on the left or right side of screen. Helps people actively share your content on Twitter, Facebook, Google+, Pinterest, Reddit and more.

Any other social media sites or resources you recommend?

  • 8. Agora Pulse: A Facebook management platform that has lets you manage many applications. You can even run a Facebook competition and test it before it goes live. It’s like ShortStack, but with more management options.
  • 9. ScoopIt: Helps you find people that have already curated content. You can follow them to see their best content and then share it with your audience as well as post your own content to broaden your reach.
  • 10. A media monitoring, community management, and analytics tool. Great for small businesses to monitor social media chatter from an audience or niche. Learn what your audience or competition is saying about your brand by keyword and venue. Great for targeting industry keywords as well as giving you ideas for new content or business opportunities.
  • Social Media Tools Guide (from Razor Social): A free e-book that has a list of social media tools. Offers steps to set up these tools and how to manage them.

Juicy Links:

Rich Brooks
The Original Social Media Tool