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Your marketing: do you know who’s watching?

Someone who's watching your marketing without you noticing.
Image by Daria Shevtsova via Pexels

That sounds a bit creepy, doesn’t it? Like you might have a stalker. In a sense, you probably have, just in a good way. I’ve been in business for over 5 years now* and it’s taught me a lot about the way people respond to marketing. Here are 5 types of people that are watching your marketing – whether you know it or not…

*I celebrated the anniversary in January, with home school and weeping.

The ones that make a lot of noise

There are two kinds of noisy person on social media. There are the ones that comment on your posts without really saying anything useful.  Then there are the ones who share your posts, offer insightful comments, or say thanks for a helpful tip. Both will potentially increase your reach, but I prefer the latter. They don’t just help me; they often add something for my other followers (or their own). Some of them even turn into customers.

The ones that act on your marketing

I’ve got to admit, this is a relatively rare experience. Everyone has followers who never really engage with anything. Then suddenly, something hits the mark and they become a customer. Even more rarely, you might get someone that hasn’t even followed you, but they respond to a post and turn into an instant customer. I have no idea how this works unless they’ve been lurking so stealthily that you haven’t noticed them at all.

The ones you meet networking

I love networking and it has helped my business to survive lockdown. I’m not exaggerating – every customer I’ve had over the past 15 months has been someone I met networking. That doesn’t mean I stop marketing online. When I meet someone networking, I still go and check them out online. It helps me to learn more about their business and whether my first impression was the right one. The same is almost certainly true of your networking contacts too.

The lurkers

Lurkers are the people you get rid of when you have a follower cull. They don’t leave a like or comment. Maybe they don’t even see your posts. Yet I’ve heard tales of people who lurk on other business owners’ pages because they want to know what they’re doing without supporting them. That bothers me. None of us are a good fit for every customer and if I can send someone to a writer that will do a better job for them, I’ll do it.

The quiet ones

I love the quiet ones. I still see you, reacting to my posts (but hardly ever commenting) and I’m so glad you’re there. Sometimes you’re the ones who tell me face to face that you enjoy my blog.  My favourite thing about you is that you’re the people who turn up just when I need you. I’ve had plenty of those moments where I wonder why I bother marketing because everything’s gone quiet. Then one of you appears out of the woodwork because you’re ready to work with me. It’s like a little bit of magic.

If you’re worried your marketing isn’t working, keep going. Get help if you need to, but don’t give up. If you’re one of my quiet ones, thank you. I hope I’m helping you. If you’d like to stick your head above the parapet and let me have your email address, I send helpful hints and tips out once a month. If you’ve been biding your time and are ready for a chat, here’s the link to book a Zoom chat. I’d love to see your face!

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Fight, Flight or Watch the Flames – A Mindful Approach to Stress

Guest blog from Jo Round about mindfulness and stress

Hi, I’m Jo Round, Mindfulness Teacher and guest blogger.  It’s taken me ages to decide on the subject area for this blog.  That’s not because I’m indecisive (at least I don’t think I am 😀) but because mindfulness is so far reaching, I could have gone down any one of many different paths.

In the end I chose stress because it’s something we can all relate to so I hope this blog will be helpful.  Also, if I look back to what I believe was the very start of my mindfulness journey, it would be an appointment with my GP when he told me I was stressed and his advice was to take my foot off the gas for a little while!  Hmmm!  Ironically, that sent me into an even greater tailspin.  But here I am writing a blog about it as a fully qualified Mindfulness Teacher, so I guess it all worked out in the end.

Let’s talk about stress!

Feeling stress is normal. It’s the body’s way of preparing us to deal with threatening situations (whether real or perceived).  You may have heard of the fight, flight or freeze response.  This is where the body detects a threat and releases hormones so we can either stand up and fight, run away or be still until the threat has gone, at which time the body stops pumping the hormones and returns to its resting state.

Our stress can come from many sources – the workplace, family issues, financial difficulties.  A little stress can be beneficial to get us through a challenging situation – a job interview, that presentation you’ve been working so hard on, even trying to buy your dream home.  It’s when the stress becomes so great, persistent and left unchecked, where our body doesn’t adequately return to its resting state, that stress becomes a problem.

Spotting the dangers

Most of us recognise the types of stress highlighted in the examples above.  But in the modern world, perhaps the greatest stressor is psychological – coming from our own thoughts and beliefs but so subtle that we don’t realise the negative impact on our wellbeing. Maybe we wish things were different to the way they are or the way we think they should be.  Our thoughts and projections about a situation can often cause us more stress than the actual situation itself.  We start to believe the negative thoughts in our head “I’m not good enough”, “what will people think”, “I don’t like this”, “why does this always happen to me?” – trust me, these thoughts are not you and they are not reality. Yet this type of stress can be constant, like being on a hamster wheel going round and round and preventing our body from returning to the resting state.  The stress continues to build until we start to feel it physically as well as mentally and simple tasks become too much to deal with.

How mindfulness can help

Like I said, stress is normal and we can’t make it go away – life just isn’t like that. But practicing mindfulness helps us to learn how to deal with stress so that it doesn’t have a detrimental effect on our wellbeing.  Imagine stress as a fire and every time we have a negative thought or wish things were different or get too caught up in our thinking, we’re adding fuel to the fire and it grows, burns and consumes until we’re quite literally burnt out.  In mindfulness we learn to spot the signs, we learn to step back and we learn to watch the fire, as though we were watching it on a TV.  We don’t get involved or pass any judgement or think too much about it, and in doing this, the fire dies down on its own and eventually it goes out.  Mindfulness isn’t about changing things; it’s about accepting things as they are.  When we can do this, things no longer take a hold and we can live our lives with much more calm, clarity and contentment.

If you’d like to find out more about mindfulness, courses or working with me, do pop along to my website www.likeacircle.co.uk or drop me a message through the contact form on the website.

And finally, thank you so much to Kirsty for allowing me to be a featured blog.

Stay mindful

Jo x

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Want to help new customers find you? Use your blog.

Woman working on her blog to find new customers
Photo by Ivan Samkov from Pexels

Have you started a blog and are wondering how long it will be before it brings those lovely new customers to your (virtual) door? Maybe you’re just thinking of starting one but are hesitating because you don’t know whether the time and effort is worth it. Whilst a good, helpful blog that’s relevant to your customer base is a wonderful thing, there are still a few things you can do to give it a better chance of being found and read. Here are my top 5.

Optimise your blog for keywords

You might already have your SEO strategy sorted, or you might not. Whatever your situation, one of the simplest things you can do is to optimize each blog post for relevant keywords. If you’re a hairdresser with a blog post about elegant wedding hairstyles, use that as your keyword phrase. Using the right tech will really help you with this. If you have a WordPress website, Yoast have an excellent plugin that will help you to use your keywords in the right way.

Share on social media

Yes, I know this seems blindingly obvious, but it’s worth including for completeness. There are loads of ways to do this, like creating a short video summarizing the main points with a link in the comments. You can also post snippets with an image and add a link to those. Don’t be afraid to share multiple times and add a link to your Instagram bio if there’s space. You can find more ideas here.

Reuse your blog in your emails

Email marketing is a great tool for making sales, as your readers already like you enough to have signed up for your emails. If you’ve written a blog with gift ideas for an upcoming occasion, or services that will support them with a current challenge, you’re already being helpful. Add links to buy or book and they’re more likely to click through because you’ve just made their life a whole lot easier.

Write good headlines

A great headline can make the difference between someone clicking through to read your blog and scrolling on to find something more interesting. The important things to remember about headlines are that they need to be relevant to the post and your customers. Basically, avoid clickbait (it’s annoying) and show people that you understand what they need. Headlines that feel personal are more likely to be read, so using words like ‘you’ and ‘your’ work really well.

Track what’s popular

If you’ve got website analytics set up, review them once a month to see which of your blog posts got the highest number of visitors. You can also check what followers engaged with on social media. Is there a pattern in terms of the headlines you’ve written, or the type of content you’re covering? You might also have a post that didn’t get lots of readers, but which prompted people to get in touch. By working out which posts get the best results you can do more of the same.

If you want to attract more new customers by starting a blog, let’s have a chat. I offer a range of options to support you, from topic suggestions to writing it all for you. Email me or book your free discovery call here.

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Want more website visitors? You need to speak your customers’ language

Photo by EKATERINA BOLOVTSOVA from Pexels

You’ve probably gone to a lot of time and effort creating a great looking website for your business. There’s a lot of technical work you can do if you want more website visitors but one of the most important bits is the one that’s overlooked most often. The words. If your website copy (the technical term for the words) doesn’t tell your visitors that they’re in the right place within a few seconds they’ll bounce off to another site and you might have lost them forever. Then you have to work on attracting more website visitors rather than deepening the relationship with the ones you already have. The great news is that the words you use can help you to attract more visitors and impress them when they get there. How do you do it? I’m glad you asked…

Know your customer

When someone lands on your website, it’s because they were looking for something. You need to show them that they’ve found it. Say they’ve found your shop by typing ‘gifts for Mother’s Day’ into Google. The page they land on should tell them what gifts you’re offering, whether it’s jewellery, chocolates, or something else. If you offer a service, sum it up in a couple of sentences, or with a question they’ll answer yes to if they’re in the right place.

Apply the ‘so what’ test

It’s important to remember that your visitors don’t really care about you. Your credentials are important in that they help you to build trust, but your customer is only really interested in what you can do for them. If you’re an accountant helping small businesses with their tax returns, make it obvious. This can just be something like ‘Want to make your next tax return quick and easy? We can help.’ Yes, it’s really that simple.

What if your visitor isn’t ready to buy?

Sometimes you’ll get a new visitor, but they’re not ready to make a decision yet. They might just be doing some research or perhaps they need to talk to someone else before they decide. Inviting them to sign up to your mailing list or follow you on social media gives you the chance to stay in touch and remind them why they were looking for you in the first place. Then when they’re ready to buy, they’ll remember you.

Are you making it easy to buy?

If you’ve got a website visitor who’s ready to give you their money, make it easy for them. If you sell products online, you know that good photos and clear pricing are both essential, along with a quick and easy checkout. If you offer a service and need to talk to the customer before they buy, show people how to make an enquiry or book a call. Give them a button to click or a form to fill in so they don’t have to go searching.

What do you want to be found for?

If you’ve done any work on your SEO, you’ll know how important key words are. Yours might be easy to identify, particularly if you offer a service in a particular location. It’s worth thinking about the kind of terms your customers will understand. Most people know what a hairdresser does, but a copywriter like me? Not so much. My customers are more likely to look for advice on how to write a blog so I talk about that.

If you want to attract more website visitors and you think your website copy needs an update, let’s have a chat. Email me or book your free discovery call here.