You Want to Market Your Business…But Do You Have The Time?

Well, do you? If not, how do you have time to run a profitable business? By profitable, I am not just talking about money. I also include time to do what you want in profitability. Time is money right?

I am going to give you golden nuggets of time management wisdom that I personally use in my direct response copywriting business. To qualify that these actually work…I utilize all of these methods personally, and I “work” no more than 4 hours a day! Use them in your business today!

1) The foundation is your desk.

How clean and organized is your desk? Do you adopt the principle of “use it, file it, or throw it away” with every single item that comes across your desk? You either use information (paper, email, whatever), file information (only if you have TIME STAMPED when you are going to use it), or throw it away completely! Some items are just not important enough to waste valuable time on.

2) Magazines, do you read them?

Really, do you? Or, like I used to, do you let them stack up in a pile…hoping to get to them someday. When you finally do, they are outdated…or you manage to read a small part of a magazine, then throw it back on the pile you created.

Here is the secret: Use the table of contents! Find those articles you like right away, and rip or cut them out of the magazine! Then, read now, or file the article in a folder for that magazine subject or title. It is much easier to read the articles you are interested in only…and it makes sense.

3) Do you find yourself listening to audio recordings?

If so, a real timesaver is to listen to the recording at double speed (2x). In 99% of the cases, you can still understand what is being said, and it doubles your efficiency in getting information. This cuts your listening time in half.

4) How organized is your office?

No really, I mean it. Is your office chair in easy reach of filing cabinets, supplies, and other necessary items without having to get up? Getting up and down for a few seconds each time adds up quickly…this technique alone can save you an hour a day! What can you do with an extra 60 minutes?

Perhaps take lunch?

5) How do you process “interruptions?”

Do you end up checking a blank email box 20 times a day, or check it three times at specific times of the day? Do you schedule phone calls, or do you pick up the phone and answer it every time Aunt Mable calls? How you handle your incoming activities (phone, email, people visiting etc…) can seriously take away from your valuable time! Remember one idea here…NOBODY AND NOTHING controls your time except YOU!

It is a conscious decision that you make to take a phone call or send another email…attend a meeting…or any other time suckers.

Please don’t take it out on other people when “you don’t have enough time.” It is YOU that made that decision in the first place.

That is all for this month’s lesson.

Joseph Ratliff
Marketing Consultant

Can Internet Marketing take your business to the top?

From The Overture Keyword Selector Tool you will see the millions of searches done to a certain keyword.

When these keywords are typed on search boxes of search engines, indexed websites containing articles with those keywords will be displayed. And this is what leads traffic to websites with keyword-rich articles. Yes, the magic word is articles.

Content is king. You can say that again. That is why writing articles is one of the most utilized Internet marketing media today. Internet surfers just can’t get enough of information on various fields. Providing information through these articles is a surefire way to drive hot traffic to your web site, and then dollars to your business.

Why is this so? Here are the benefits that writing articles can give your Internet business.

1. It’s absolutely free.

Too good to be true? Nope. Okay, you have to pay for your Internet Service Provider. That’s it. All you need is your thoughts, your computer, and your hands. If you have those, nothing will stop you from typing words that will make you complete that article for your website. Be sure to include valuable information in the article for the reader…then we can talk about conversion rate for your business.

2. Your website will be noticed in a short period of time.

Submit that article of yours to article directories such as Ezine Articles that get good web traffic and in no time your web site will be crawled. Don’t forget to include a complete byline or contact information with each article you write. Including your website is especially important.

3. Obtain back links automatically.

When you submit your articles to directories, surely, other websites will make use of your article too. With the copyright terms of your articles, the URL of your website will still be in tact and will subsequently direct more traffic to your website.

4. Improve your reputation.

As an Internet marketer, if you plainly display your products on your website, you will not gain much conversion rate. Conversion is when your traffic converts to sales. You have to show that you are knowledgeable on your field. And what better way to show that than by writing articles that will allow you to establish yourself as an AUTHORITY in your particular industry.

Just make your creative juices flow and jot down or key in those ideas quickly to jumpstart your article writing momentum. With those benefits listed above, a writer’s block is the last problem you will ever be able to surmount. There is more to come…so stay tuned to this blog.

Joe Ratliff

Are You Leaving Your Yellow Pages Advertising Results To Chance?

Well are you?

When a potential customer looks through the Yellow Pages, they are looking for someone to help them with something pretty specific (i.e. plumbing, auto repair, attorney, etc…). This is about the most targeted prospect you are going to get in your marketing efforts…yet I can tell you that you are missing out on about three to four times the potential that your Yellow Pages ad will deliver!

So do me a favor right now…

Pull out your copy of the Yellow Pages and look up Auto Repair. What do you see? That is right, almost all of the ads are the same! Why is this I wonder? What would differentiate your business from the other businesses in your particular section of the Yellow Pages?The reason that almost all ads are the same within a particular section of the Yellow Pages is that they are designed by the Yellow Pages company that produces the book or sells the advertising! There is no opportunity for market differentiation with the “cookie cutter” approach that most Yellow Pages advertising companies (the ones that sell the space) use in their approach when they position and place the ad…and speaking of positioning…could you be in a better spot so your ad stands out?

What about trust and credibility? Does your Yellow Pages advertising separate itself from the competition in these KEY areas?

Can you really say that your ad “separates” itself from the crowd? If the answer is no…then you need to rethink your marketing through the Yellow Pages, and quit wondering why you fork out $300 or more a month and get no results!

That is all from this month’s tip…keep tuning in…because we are just getting warmed up here!

Joe Ratliff

When the going gets tough, can you afford to market?

Can you afford not to? Do you want to grow your business in the tough times?

Do yourself and your business a favor and click on the Google pic above, then do a search for business marketing ideas…how many different ideas come up?

I already know the answer to these questions, so don’t worry about emailing me or anything. It is during the tough times that I can almost assure you most other businesses have also cut their marketing budgets, among other expenses like training, supplies, and other necessities to run a business. The fear of becoming unprofitable is overwhelming isn’t it?

I am writing this May’s tip to tell you that because most of your competitors and other businesses are not devoting as many resources to marketing during the tough times…That you are in prime position to take advantage of the situation! Get out there and market your business! The “marketing traffic” is down, so your message will be more clearly received when not combined with as many other messages during these times. Some quick ideas (and inexpensive ideas) to take advantage of:

1) Speak in front of groups of people at your location or at a hotel with useful information related to your industry. For example, an automotive business owner may have a “clinic” on a topic pertaining to vehicle maintenance.

This event at his/her shop would include beverages and hot dogs or other refreshments. Advertise in the local paper and throw away papers three weeks before, then two weeks before, then the week of the event you are going to hold. At the event, you make contact with the buying public interested in what you have to say.

How wonderful is that?

Distribute your promotional materials freely, complete with incentives for the new clients to do business with you. While you may not sell anything depending on the type of business you operate, you have made contact and put your name in front of the buying public.

2) Offer a irresistible discount or free service or items as a means of drawing people to your business. Advertise something that the buying public just cannot resist, even if you “cringe” at the thought of giving something away.

Remember, these are tough times, and you are going to be doing what other businesses will not to continue to drive customers through your doors.

Remember also to advertise this discounted “loss leader” through a newspaper, magazine, or by just going out to a public place and handing out flyers.

Also, make sure that you have other items or services to sell when the customer traffic is flowing.

Thanks for viewing this months tip.

Joe Ratliff

Do you have a website? Does it have effective copy?

The internet is an exciting place, isn’t it?

Most business owners have gone through the “paces” of developing a website. Either you paid someone to do it for you, or you did it yourself. As most business owners are self – motivated people, they try to do everything themselves without consideration of the possible time and energy savings of hiring a professional. This includes typing website sales copy for each page in their site.

I am writing this month’s tip to inform you that hiring a professional web copywriting service to generate sales copy that sizzles for the customer is crucial to your online success! An important concept to remember is the online shopper looking for products or services is typically looking for valuable content rather than a quick introduction as to why to invest in your products or services. Many a business owner loses sight of this important fact, and therefore loses potential clients visiting the respective website. You can find out more on this subject by visiting Contacting Us Today and requesting our Marketing Opportunity Analysis. This package does require a small investment, but the information and coaching you will receive is valued at more than $1000!

Some quick ideas for delivering content in your own website:

1) Publish an E-Zine – This is an easy way to provide information for the internet consumer. An E-Zine also adds value to your business by allowing you to develop a list of subscribers that you can market to.

2) Avoid sounding “salesy” in your introductory page – This is an immediate turn off for most consumers. Closely adhere to the W.I.I.F.M. (What’s In It For Me) principle throughout your site, and focus on how the content in your site “informs” rather than sells.

3) Provide complete contact information – An often overlooked part of a successful website. Ensure you make contacting your business as easy as possible for the consumer.

4) Keep the “fancy graphics” to a minimum – Make your web pages easy for any internet browser to load, or you may lose clients right off the bat.

That’s it for this month…but stay tuned for upcoming timely information on the proper marketing and profitability of your business!

Joe Ratliff