How to Improve Your Content for the Search Engines… Fast

by Melanie Rembrandt, www.rembrandtwrites.com on April 9, 2014

3 No-Cost Ways to Get Noticed Online

Improve your content to boost online awareness.

As an entrepreneur, you know you need to build online awareness and get high rankings on the search engines. And, of course, there are hundreds of services out there ready to help you… from very expensive, full-services to consultants to do-it-yourself tools to classes, and more.

Who has time or money for that? You have a business to run!

With this in mind, here are 3 ways to increase your site rankings at no cost…

1.     Review your content.

When was the last time you read the content on your Website or had someone critique it? If it has been a few weeks, take some time to actually review what you are saying on your site. Then, ask yourself a few questions:

  • Is it easy to understand what we offer in a matter of seconds?
  • Will our target market see “what’s in it for them” right away?
  • Do we provide simple steps and current (and correct), valuable data?

By answering these questions, you’ll be able to see what your site lacks immediately and start e to make changes.

2.     Provide value.

If you were a potential customer visiting your site, what information would you want to see?

Use your answer to write blogs, tip sheets, social media posts, articles, case studies, etc. that provide value to your target market.

Offer unique data, stories, photos, and more that only you and your organization can offer. This way, you’ll stand out from the competition.

3.     Don’t worry about keywords.

If you spend an appropriate amount of time researching your target market and providing valuable information specifically for them that is unique to you and your business, you shouldn’t have to worry about inserting a bunch of keywords into your content.

Why? Your content should already include key phrases that your audience is looking for!

If you’re not sure, review your finished content. Then, add headlines and sub-titles with pertinent keyword phrases in them.

For example, if you have a blog about cleaning a boat, add a headline that includes this information such as, “Tips to Clean Your Boat.” Then, throughout the blog, add titles that explain what you are talking about such as, “Tools to Clean Your Boat Windows Fast,” “Avoid This Chemical When You Clean Your Boat,” etc. This way, we know the blog focuses on ways to “Clean Your Boat.”

Make it easy for customers, and the search engines to find your content online by including appropriate titles and sub-titles.

SEO is Not about Keywords. It’s about Value.

As a busy entrepreneur, you have important things to take care of, and the last thing you want to do is waste time and money on SEO. If this sounds familiar, schedule some time to review your Website and content. Then, update it accordingly with the tips above. You can also get a marketing intern to help you at no cost. Then, when your business starts making money, look into hiring an experienced, SEO content strategist to help you. This way, you can focus on your core responsibilities and know that you are presenting the best content possible to your target market.

By providing valuable and current information that only you and your business can provide, your site will get noticed by the search engines. More important, customers will appreciate the information, and you’ll see word-of-mouth and sales increase!

What are you going to do today to update your Website content?

For additional, free tips on boosting online sales, awareness and credibility with SEO content strategy, check out these tips.

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Speed = Sales and Success in PR and Marketing

by Melanie Rembrandt, www.rembrandtwrites.com on April 2, 2014

How Fast Does Your Team Respond?

How many of you are waiting for a response from a new client, partner, publicist, or someone else?

In today’s busy, business world, it’s probably quite a few of you.

Although we now have speedy tools like e-mail, social media, texting, and even the old standard of actually talking to someone on the phone, response rates seem to have gone down. And while this may seem frustrating and rude, you can actually turn it into a positive.

How?

Respond Fast to Boost Business Sales and Awareness.

Just because others don’t’ respond quickly, that doesn’t mean you need to as well…

Don’t wait for a potential, new client to respond to your proposal.
Don’t wait until you have your content perfect before posting it.
Don’t wait to respond to a media member.

Take action now!

As Andrew Palmer of Agora Publishing and other, successful business people say, “money loves speed.” This refers to acting on ideas quickly and making things happen. The same goes for working with people. If you are just waiting for others to respond, you are not being proactive.

Instead…

Know Your Goals and Action Plan.

Do you have an action plan for your public relations, content, sales, marketing, and overall, business processes?

It may seem like extra work, but you’ve got to know exactly what you are trying to accomplish and the tactics you are going to use to meet those goals. If not, you can waste a lot of time, money and effort. Write down what you want to accomplish, how you are going to do it and when.

Then, once you have your plan in place, follow it!

After you finish a particular pitch, content piece or other item and are waiting for a response, make a note of the status of that particular activity and then move on to the next item on your list. This way, you will keep the momentum going and be able to meet your set timelines – not someone else’s!

Don’t Let Others Slow You Down.

If you spend your life waiting for others to respond to your requests, you may be waiting a long time! Instead, set goals and tactics and follow your schedule and deadlines.

Also, be known as someone who responds to others quickly. People will appreciate your speediness, and you will actually accomplish more.

Currently, I’m waiting to hear back from over six people on some very important activities. But instead of getting frustrated and focusing on these projects, I’m moving on. There are plenty of business and media opportunities out there to pursue, and there is no way I’m going to miss them by waiting for others to get in touch with me!

How about you? Are you waiting on a response when you could be pursuing something else right now?

For additional information on boosting sales, awareness and credibility fast, check out these content and PR strategy tips.

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Are You Preparing for May Flowers Right Now?

by Melanie Rembrandt, www.rembrandtwrites.com on March 27, 2014

Start Spring PR and Content Activities Now!

If you have a big “To Do” list for your business and PR and marketing activities right now, it’s time to take action. Start big projects, reach out to new customers and review your goals.

After all, the snow is thawing. Do you really want to be stuck behind your desk when you could be enjoying a nice, weekend outside in the near future?

To help you get things going here are three questions to ask yourself:

1. What can you do now to avoid excessive work in the spring and summer?

Take a look at your schedule and annual plan. What deadlines do you have now and what’s coming up in the future? Review your calendar and set small goals for each day. This way, you can help avoid distractions and finish priority tasks.

2. Do you need to hire an intern, employee or virtual assistant to help you finish key projects?

Although spending the time and/or money to hire someone to help you may be out of the question due to budget concerns, can you afford NOT to hire someone?

It’s possible to significantly increase your income and accomplish more by focusing on your key strengths and hiring someone to help you with administrative duties or other tasks. Take some time to review your options. You may just find a helpful intern willing to work for college course-credits, a freelancer on www.elance.com or a part-time employee who wants to work on a per-project basis.

3. What kind of media opportunities can you pursue now?

Now is the time to start pitching your “Back-to-School” and holiday stories to print publications. After all, many media-venues start on stories four to six months in advance of publication dates. Check the online editorial-calendars for your targeted, media venues today so you don’t miss out on any opportunities.

Spring into Action!

I’m sure you can think of many other ways to get organized and prepare now for the lazy days of summer that are not too far away. But this offers a helpful reminder to prepare in advance and work hard now so you can enjoy yourself a little more in the warmer days ahead!

What are you going to do today to boost awareness for your business?

For more PR and content strategy tips, click here.

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Spring Tips to Spend More Time Having Fun

by Melanie Rembrandt, www.rembrandtwrites.com on March 20, 2014

Get ready to take a break and enjoy the season!

Spring is finally here, and that means you will probably want to spend more time doing fun things outside.

But if you are a small business owner, it can be difficult to get away from the office in order to enjoy yourself.

With this in mind, here are three ways to market your business while having more time to enjoy the things you want to do!

1. Get organized.

Set aside a few hours to review your business activities. Are you working on payroll, taxes and other, administrative tasks that you could easily give to someone else?

Write down all of the things that you need to personally handle and make a separate list of items you can outsource.

2. Find help.

Yes, it may take some extra time at first, but there are plenty of ways to outsource the “administrative” activities you don’t need to be doing – without spending a fortune.

Look for a college intern who can assist you for course credit. Check Craigslist and local newspaper sites for assistance.

There are also many resources online for inexpensive virtual assistants.

Conduct some research, and you’ll find people who can help you.

3. Set processes.

Once you find assistants to help you, create systems for activities, deadlines and reporting.

Let your team members know what you expect of them… and the data that you need to receive at the end of each month.

This way, you can monitor what’s going on and relax knowing that things are being taken care of the right way.

Take Some Time Off.

As an entrepreneur, it’s essential to work hard to be successful. But that doesn’t mean becoming a workaholic and actually missing out on “life” just to build a business.

Instead, organize activities, find people to help with appropriate areas and monitor the results on a regular basis.

This way, you will still have control of your business AND be able to focus on your core, business responsibilities.

More important, you’ll actually have time to have some fun in the sun!

For help with your content strategy, please see these entries, or write to me here.

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How to Create a Pitch the Media Wants to Hear

by Melanie Rembrandt, www.rembrandtwrites.com on March 13, 2014

Stop sending hundreds of pitches to a massive list of media members.

If you are new to the world of public relations, you may think that sending out a press release to the masses will help you get the media coverage you are looking for. Well, many businesses and organizations do this, and that’s one of the reasons it doesn’t work!

Media members are inundated with press releases and pitches every day. And while some press releases from well-known companies can get a lot of coverage, others do not. With this in mind…

How do you get the media attention you are looking for?

In a nutshell: You need to create a specific story, for a specific media-member. And to help you do this, here are…

3 Ways to Create a Good, Media Pitch.

1. Research.
Conduct online research and figure out which media-members cover your industry. Read what they have written. Know what topics, or beats, they cover. Then, write down the contact information for the appropriate people you want to pitch.

2. Create a Specific Story.
Now that you know which reporters you want to reach, figure out a specific story-angle for each reporter. That’s right. You need a unique story idea for each person you are going to pitch. It needs to cover their area of interest and be newsworthy and relevant to their audience.

3. Practice.
If you are new to pitching the media, practice first. Either work with a friend or a recorder, or both. Try to be friendly and succinct.

Start Pitching!

When you are ready, pick up the phone and call each media-member on your list and give your pitch. You will either get a “Yes” or a “No.” More important, you will introduce yourself to new people and start building relationships. Eventually, you’ll fine tune your pitching abilities and see more of your stories in print.

It takes hard work to pitch media-members the right way. Conduct research, create relevant and unique stories and practice what you are going to say in advance. This way, you’ll get a lot more media-coverage and stop wasting money and resources on “easy” PR activities that don’t produce results.

Do you need help with your public relations and content strategy? Check out these articles.

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