Tips to Recruit More Business Listings to Your Online Business Directory

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Attracting business listings to an online business directory is essential to operating a successful directory. The key to attracting business listings is to create a positive online presence. There are a number of methods one can use to spread the word in the online business community about the benefits of listing their business on your directory.

1. Because businesses need to know why it is beneficial to list their business in your directory, you need to let them know the advantages of adding their listing. Write a series of articles and submit them to a number of article directories throughout the internet. Write about why business directories are a great way for a business to gain exposure such as helping a business improve their search engine rankings and creating name and brand recognition.

2. Because online business directories allows one the flexibility of being creative in how they create categories and subcategories, you can target businesses in your local community by creating a category just for them. The subcategories can be divided into the various types of local businesses such as hotels, restaurants, computer services…etc. Send out emails or letters promoting your local business category of your directory. You can also go to each business and talk to them about the benefits of listing their business in your directory. Carry business cards with you to distribute.

3. Create a free e-book that teaches people how to effectively promote their own business. This e-book can be a 50 or 100 page guide on marketing one’s business both online and offline. It should be informative with a many strategies on how a business can reach their targeted customer.

4. On your business directory, offer free stuff that can benefit a business such as free animations, free website templates, HTML checker, keyword check tool, free spyware scan, website submission tools, Meta tag analyzer, and free back grounds. As well, post articles on your site on tips to promoting a business and how one implements various types of marketing strategies.

5. There are many online business discussion forums and business Blogs where one can post comments. It is important that your comments are relevant to the discussion and Blog post, and not just blatant advertising. Make sure your signature includes your directory URL. As well, post your directory URL to many online classified sites.

6. Make your online directory a niche directory. For instance, if your main website is computers, create an online directory that targets the computer industry. This can include categories that focus on the computer industry. You can create it so that it is for businesses that are related to your own business, but not your direct competition. You can then set up an email campaign to target these businesses for listing in your directory. You have to explain why listing in your directory will benefit their business.

Recruiting businesses to your online directory is easy, but takes patience. You have to implement some form of marketing technique every day to spread the word about the benefits of listing with your directory. In no time, you will have a thriving and money making online business directory.

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Source by Adriana N.

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Make Money Online by Selling Other People’s Products

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A lot of people are now getting into internet businesses and online marketing either to add extra income or eventually making it their primary source of income. Why? Because online marketing can provide better benefits!

First, you can contact and communicate with just about anybody in the world who has internet connection if you advertise your products online. That indicates a broader market reach for you, which can convert to larger profits. Second, setting up an internet based business needs only a portion of the cost required to set up an actual company establishment, which indicates lesser expenses for the business owner

Another thing that has drawn a lot of attention from people towards online marketing is the fact that you are not required to have your own product to begin. In online marketing, anyone can start generating profits online just by promoting, or even by just trying to sell other people’s items. Getting started with this type of marketing procedure is actually quite simple. All that you need to do is to set up a compliance agreement with an online merchant or vendor, and after everything is set up, one can instantly begin to generate profits by promoting the vendor’s or the store’s items.

Furthermore, the most popular and the fastest method of selling other people’s products and services on the internet is affiliate marketing. Affiliate marketing, in its basic definition, is a relationship between an internet merchant or store, who has items to sell, and his affiliates, who are willing to sell the vendor’s product on their website.

In a common affiliate marketing set up, the vendor provides his affiliates with advertisements, either banner or text type that directly links to his site. The affiliates will then get these ads placed on their site and they get compensated whenever visitors or product purchases directed to the vendor’s web page. Affiliates are often compensated on sales by commission, although other online product vendors would opt to pay a set fee for the affiliate’s compensation.

Getting started to make money online through affiliate marketing is fast and simple. You just need to sign up as an affiliate marketer to an affiliate program. Another option is to sign up as an affiliate on an affiliate network that hosts different affiliate programs. Signing up usually costs nothing, although some networks might require you to pay a small fee that may be the amount as a payment for the additional service those companies render like tools, webinars and training materials.

When you sign up with an affiliate program, you are usually required to fill up an information form about yourself. Some affiliate marketing programs may also need you to present the URL of your web page and describe its content. This will allow the retailers to verify that you actually have a web page with material that are relevant to their products. Some affiliate programs, however, does not require you to have a website. After filling out the form, you are then free to choose the affiliate programs you want to use.

After signing up with an affiliate program and becoming an affiliate, you are now ready to make money online by selling other people’s products. How do you make money? There are actually various ways for you to generate income as an affiliate marketer, and most of these ways depends on the type of affiliate program you’ve sign up for.

A lot of affiliate programs pay their affiliates in either of three methods: pay-per-click (PPC), payper-sale (PPS), or pay-per-lead (PPL). In pay-per-click marketing, the affiliate is compensated whenever he directs traffic to the vendor’s site. PPS and PPL online marketing programs is different. In PPS, the affiliate only gets paid when his referral converts into a sale. In typical PPS online marketing program, the affiliate would usually get 15% to 20% commission for each conversion. Pay Per Lead works the same way, although affiliates are paid a fixed compensation whenever his referral converts into a lead for the vendor.

Some affiliate programs are two-tier, which means the affiliate is also allowed to refer other affiliates to the vendor. In such affiliate program, the affiliate would not only be paid for the visits or sales that he would redirect to the merchant’s site but also for the visits or sales directed by the affiliates who signed up with the program through his referral.

Another way of earning more profits with affiliate marketing is through residual affiliate programs. Residual marketing programs are affiliate programs where the affiliate gets compensated a number of times for as long as the vendor keeps the customer the affiliate has recommended to his site. One type of residual program gets the affiliate compensated a commission every time the referred customer purchases something on the vendor’s site.

Another form of residual program gets the affiliate paid every month for as long as the merchant keeps the customer being referred.

With a lot of choices available and a lot of methods to generate income, affiliate marketing is simply the most popular and the easiest way to earn cash by selling other people’s products on the internet. As to how much cash an affiliate can generate from affiliate programs actually depends on the affiliate. A persevering and diligent affiliate would certainly get more from affiliate marketing compared to those who would simply sign up and forget about it later on.

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Source by Clive Hitchcock

5 Steps to Business Success With Brand Recognition and Marketing Strategies

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Brand recognition plays a significant part in growing a successful business online. Knowing the importance and details of growing your business using brand recognition, can make or break your marketing strategy. Let’s look at the details!

While everyone recognizes that success is a matter of expectations, expecting great things to come your way may not be the only thing you need to build a successful online business. Perhaps pouring heart and soul into your business and funneling these five necessary ingredients into the mix can be helpful in building the dynamic success you desire from your business.

1 – Keyword Domination in Your Industry

Keywords are more than just the search engine optimizing jargon that goes well with your business niche, they are the recognition factor that grows your business, builds your list, and brings your buyers to your website. By applying a well-focused content promoting plan to the development of your online presence, strategically marketing your products and services through daily communication with your buyers.

2 – Effective Brand Identification

Will your customers recognize your brand? Do they know how they feel about you? Do they trust you? Can they feel the warm and caring touch you provide through your products and services? How your customers feel about you is the biggest reflection of your brand. When you’ve liberally sprinkled your brand identification through your website, throughout your content on the web, and scattered it over your customers as you serve them, they’ll recognize you, appreciate you, and refer others to you. That’s brand recognition worthy of bragging points.

3 – Liberal Use of Successful Marketing Strategies

The most successful businesses find working strategies for marketing their businesses and use them over and over and over again. In fact, they’ll use those same successful marketing strategies, even when they apply them to new and sometimes different marketing plans. One such plan is the unequalized option of bringing a buying client, who is happy with their purchase, back to purchase from you again. In the online industry, we often refer to that as list building, and generate a marketing list from our happy customers at check out. Of course, there’s the option of being part of the list prior to purchasing anything, as well.

The key component of this strategy is to keep your customers happy.

4 – Innovative Sales Techniques & Tools

After you’re on target with your marketing program, the next step is to bring in an innovative sales team to brainstorm the best sales techniques and tools and implement them in your overall marketing plan. Some of the most successful and productive marketing strategies used in my business came from my ‘then’ 12 year old son who didn’t know there was a right way to market a product, but had innovative ideas about what he thought would work. And they worked. He’s now – 9 years later – a top performing sales rep with a tech industry, at the tender age of 21. His ideas worked for me, and they’re working for them too.

5 – Visibility Through Content, Publication, & Name Recognition

“If nobody knows you exist, how can they purchase your products?” was my most effective coaching question for many years of teaching people how to market their business online. Be visible. My business started out on the small side street of an obscure community in southeast Colorado. Nobody traveled that street, so a sign out front would have been worthless. Working online offered ample opportunity to not only be visible, but to promote my business in ways that took me to the forefront and top of my industry as a recognized expert. Success means that when you open a Google search form and plug in the name of your business, your signature, or your primary product, YOU show up on the first page – preferably at the top of the results page.

Publication can take you to that realm of recognition, if you do it right…

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Source by Jan Verhoeff

The Rules of Building a Personal Brand That Stands Out

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What’s the number one thing that can make or break a business? Simple – it’s your reputation. Branding is a word that’s thrown around quite often in the marketing industry, and for good reason. It’s key for getting customers to know, trust, and more importantly, purchase from you. This is why online reputation management is so essential. Without it, your brand will either go unnoticed, or will suffer from a bad wrap due to negative posts that are left unchecked.

The same goes for personal branding, which too gets overlooked by businesses and entrepreneurs. Today’s consumer is looking to connect with brands that are like people, not corporations. This makes personal branding a significant tool for building your authority.

If you have yet to start building your personal brand, then here are some tips to help get you started with your online reputation management.

Always Be Authentic

Your personal image online should be authentic, so refrain from creating an alter ego. The idea of faking it until you make it needs to be tossed out the window because that won’t fly here. Online users are savvy about who they come to trust, so if they get a whiff of ingenuity, they will not only unfollow you, but they will call you out, which can potentially tarnish any branding you were successful enough to build. In this case, you would have to hire online reputation management services to turn around your fate.

Become a Thought Leader

You don’t want to just be a person that regurgitates what others are saying. Have your own mind and thoughts about your industry and topics related to your market, and speak about them. Your social platforms are your playground for sharing your thoughts, which could in turn help strengthen your position as an authority and trusted source. Think of Steve Jobs, Bill Gates and other entrepreneurs who were well-known by their customers and the world. They were known best as thought leaders and innovators.

It’s a Marriage Not a Date

Personal branding is a long-term commitment, so you have to be ready to put in work for the long haul. You need to develop an online reputation management strategy that will be implemented over the course of years. This should be in effect for as long as your company is in business – and this includes managing your personal branding.

If you need help with your personal branding, then consider hiring professional online reputation management services.

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Source by Hugh Benjamin

Naming a Consulting Company

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With the economy on the skids, many experienced mid and upper level professionals are striking out on their own, leveraging their expertise to build their own future and control their own destiny. For many of these aspiring entrepreneurs, creating a compelling brand name is new territory, a complete and utter mystery. They know it’s an important part of the equation, and they may have even had a full time marketing department at their previous firm. But now it’s “do-it-yourself-time,” and there’s a dearth of information on how to brand a new consulting company successfully. Fear no more. The first step in branding a consulting company is to know your objectives. Here are four key questions to clarify your goals…

1. Do you want your company name to stand out, or fit in? This may seem like a trick question, but there is not a right or wrong answer. Some new consultants are so concerned with gaining acceptance in their industry, they are much more comfortable with a name that sounds established and credible, right from the outset. If that’s the case, try looking up a list of others in your industry on sites such as dmoz.org. You will then gain a sense of the nomenclature used in your field. You may be able to emulate the feel, much like other industries have done (i.e. Microsoft’s Outlook, Apple’s Safari, Netscape’s Navigator, etc.) If want to gain notice, then do just the opposite. Look at the company names in your field and use interpretive naming strategies. For example, if nearly everyone in your category uses proper names (sometimes known as “legacy” names) then go with a metaphor (i.e. Jaguar, Caterpillar, Amazon, Monster, etc.) to convey your company’s attributes. Or try positive connotation words to create an entirely new identity (i.e. RedHat, OnStar, FireDog, etc.) Just make sure you have a rationale that can explain why you chose that name, and one that leads to a deeper dialog about your company.

2. Have you explored all the possibilities? Frequently, new business owners become frustrated and discouraged when naming their new businesses, simply because they’ve attempted only one or two naming strategies. Many times they’ve created a list of literal/functional names, (i.e. Custom Software Consulting) only to find the domain names are gone. Or they’ve attempted some obvious metaphors (i.e. Summit, Pinnacle, etc.) and found dozens of companies with similar names. The trick is to employ several methods. These include…

* Key attributes — For an example, we named one staffing company BrightHire.com based on their desire to attract the most intelligent candidates. You can see this employed with company names such as SirSpeedy, EconoLodge, Priceline and Smart Cuts. Is there an overarching benefit you provide that you can incorporate into your name?

* Invented names — This is a favorite with consultants but proceed with caution. It’s easy to get caught up in with the chase of a new name and gradual twist the spelling and message until it’s unintelligible. It’s okay to use Latin word parts and obscure references if the name can still be spoken and spelled easily. Small firms have the advantage of conveying part of the brand message in person, over the phone, or at a trade conference. But don’t push it. If you find yourself having to constantly spell or correct the spelling, then it’s a miss. And keep in mind the name can be invented and still carry a sense of meaning. We named one company Claricent, because they were able to provide clear insight and direction to their client base. So you can still convey an attribute, even in an invented name. (i.e Verizon = Horizon, Agilent =Agile, etc.)

* Descriptive Hybrid Names — These names combine an industry descriptor word and marry it with an evocative word. Examples include companies such as Emisstar, consultants in the emissions control industry. Big brand examples include JetBlue and CarMax. If you use this approach, just be sure that your industry descriptor is one that won’t change over time.

* Metaphors — Since the proverbial “picture paints a thousand words”, then metaphors are a great way to convey multiple company attributes with a single image. FourBridges Capital, for example, expresses this investment banking firm’s ability to “bridge the gap” and “connect business with capital,” etc. With four major partners and four major bridges in Chattanooga, TN, the story gains even more traction.

3. Have you prioritized your wants? Starting a new consultancy provides a beautiful blank page upon which to craft your story. Take time to determine what is most important in that story.

* Do you want a name that’s memorable?

* Do you want a name that’s easy to say and spell?

* Are you most concerned with trademark?

* Are you adamant that to have the exact matching.com domain name? Figure out the key driver(s) behind your naming challenge, so that when you come down to a final list, you can look back and pick the one that meets your top criteria. Often the process can get foggy and unfocused after a prolonged search for a name, and all the words start sounding alike. So be sure you know what you want before you begin. That way it will help you when it’s 3 a.m., your eyes start to cross, and your spouse no longer wants to be your sounding board.

4. Are you seeing the big picture? — Create a short list of your favorite names, and then test them out. Make sure you choose people who are either in your potential market, or who understand good branding. Rather than randomly tossing names around, create some context for each name, so that when the name is said, it falls into place. You may even want to invest in some quick logo treatments to help visualize the brand. Many major brand names would ring hallow if only spoken. Judge the whole package… name, rough tagline, sketch of logo, to get the real feel. A consulting name such as BearingPoint gains traction once it has a logo, tag line, and a story line. Decide if you want to fit in or stand out, utilize multiple naming strategies, prioritize your “wants” list, and test your ideas, and you’ll be well on your way to a great consulting company brand name. Once you make your selection, be sure to run it by your trademark attorney and to acquire the matching, or closely matching, com domain name. Continue to integrate your brand message throughout your web site, corporate identity, collateral materials and advertising to further strengthen your presence. If done properly, you will have a company name that serves you well, both now and for years to come.

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Source by Phillip Davis

How Did Facebook Become So Popular?

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Have You Heard Of Facebook?

By now, you are probably familiar with the popular social-networking website called Facebook.

According to Wikipedia, Facebook has more than 19 million registered users across 47,000 regional, work-related, college or high-school networks.

I Was Skeptical At First

Initially, I was very reluctant to embrace the Facebook phenomenon. However, my friends kept asking me “Hey Vincent, are you on Facebook?”…”Did you join Facebook yet” “You need to visit Facebook.” This went on for weeks.

Surprisingly, when I checked my Hotmail account, I also received invites from dozens of friends including Andre, David, Trisha, Renee and Kevin

How Did Facebook Become So Popular, So Fast?

Finally, I decided to visit this website called Facebook. Once and for all, I wanted to discover why Facebook is so popular. I wanted to know how they managed to gain millions of members in a few short months? How did they become so big, so fast? I had to know the truth. I wanted to know their secret!

Facebook’s Secret Exposed

Aside from having an easy to navigate layout, the ability to keep tabs on friends, great content, and, amazing search capabilities, Facebook is utilizing one of the most powerful viral marketing strategies ever conceived.

It’s so simple, but yet extremely powerful.

Once my account was created, I immediately clicked on the friends tab. I noticed a drop down menu with several options including Invite Friends. Once clicked, I was taken to a page that allowed me to Import Email Addresses from my Yahoo, Hotmail, AOL, and Gmail.

I was also greeted with the following message:

“Enter your email login info below and Facebook will securely import your contacts from

your address book.”

I simply inserted my email address and password and instantly all 78 of my Hotmail contacts appeared before me. With one click of a button, I was able to invite all my contacts to join Facebook.

I Quickly Realized The Power of This Application After using this tool to instantly invite all 78 of my Hotmail contacts; I quickly realized the power of this application! What impressed me the most was how simple it was to import and invite all of my contacts. Unlike traditional tell-a-friend forms, it only took a few seconds to invite 78 people using Facebook’s PHP address book importer.

By implementing this viral marketing strategy, Facebook has become one the most popular websites online.

5 Reasons Why Traditional Tell-A-Friend Forms Are Obsolete!

  • They forced your visitors to manually input email addresses.
  • Your visitors must also manually type the name beside each email address.
  • Most forms only have around 10 input fields. Remember, the average person, has over 100 web mail contacts. Why limit yourself?
  • People are lazy. Nobody wants to sit around and insert dozens of email addresses into your form!
  • Ongoing subscription fees.

Once you make the decision to upgrade to a PHP address book importer. You will need to implement a variety of marketing strategies to maximize your success. In other words, simply installing such a script is NOT good enough.

3 Viral Marketing Strategies You MUST Do In Order To EXPLODE Your Online Business

Strategy #1: Motivate Your Visitors!

Let’s get real. We live in a very selfish world. I’m sure you have a fabulous website. However, nobody is going tell his or her friends about it without asking the following question what’s in it for me? You will be surprised what people will do if you provide the right incentive! Offering Free Giveaways is a good place to start.

Strategy #2: Don’t Hide Your Tell-A-Friend Link

Hiding your link is a huge mistake. This is very frustrating to me. Most webmasters will place their tell-a-friend link at the bottom of their web page. They place it in some remote area of their web page and wonder why nobody uses it.

You must add your tell-a-friend link to the main navigation of your website. For example, most websites will have “About us”Contact Us” “Products” added to the primary navigation. Your tell-a-friend link must also be added to the primary navigation of your website.

Strategy #3: It’s All In The Name

Here’s an idea. Instead of using the same boring link title “tell-a-friend” Why not say “Free Ipod” “Free Coupon”, “Free E-Book” This will cause your visitors to actually click on the link. At that point, you can provide contest details / instructions.

Viral marketing is not a fad or gimmick. It’s a real marketing strategy that can increase the profitability of your business. Adding a PHP address book importer to your arsenal will instantly provide your visitors an easy way of inviting others to your website.

Facebook is already utilizing the new technology, shouldn’t you?

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Source by Vincent Newton

Emerging Trends on Reputation Management to Note in 2016

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Brand Recognition not only concerns with market share and media penetration. Standing in the era of tech-dominance, businesses must draw significant attention on shaping customer conception. Alike search engine rankings and content management, online reputation also impels on conversion rates. Thus, reputation management acts as the secret pathway to success.

In 2016, thankfully, experts have come with a series of ways to shape your online reputation shine.

The task is no more limited to SEO

Earlier, this entire process was a part of Search Engine Optimization that facilitates the Google results to show positive and relevant links. But, in 2016, it will get a wider picture, thereby becoming an expansive umbrella for all the marketing messages sent to the community. On an advisable note, here’s what you have to do to manage the online reputation of your brand in 2016.

Social listening

It is becoming more crucial. Monitoring what people are saying about your offerings, brand, business rivals and industry will give an idea about where your brand stands and what are the possible suggestions for improving it. Addressing the honest feedback of clients over social media will help you to make significant improvements.

User-generated content

Besides the web-design and marketing agencies, there are a number of users who produces contents everyday including images, videos, tweets, vines and many more. In 2016, the marketing strategy and actions of yours can possibly influence the type of content your viewers generates. Thus, try to reap the underlying benefits of it by making it an effective marketing material.

Client Reviews and Testimonials

Be it Google, glassdoor or Yelp, you must lure the consumers to share pleasing experiences with the world. Surprisingly, food and beverages, beauty and movie industries are mostly built on reviews and it serves as the base for online reputation. This trend is going to expand in other industries as well in 2016.

Try to attract the customers and educate them, as they act as your best marketers and of course, nevertheless, work in consideration to the bad reviews as well.

Community engagement

Viewers have already seen millions of the ‘good self-praised’ declarations and are quite immune to them. Try something different. Focus on showing them what sets you apart from the competitors. When the consumer Googles you, will they be able to come across any blog post of their interest? Will they be able to relate you as a part of their own world? That’s what you need to target for facilitating greater community engagement.

Final word

Reputation management certainly takes time and the company requires a consistent strategy and approach to succeed. Reputation is more like a long-term ROI and not a holiday sale. Thus, your strategy must show a perfect amalgam of your business goals and ongoing trends of the industry to build a credible brand image and sustain in the long run.

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Source by Ritika Basu