Run a Challenge and Build Your List!

Run a Challenge and Build Your List!

Is your ideal community driven to reach a measurable goal, such as losing weight before summer, publishing a Kindle book or landing their first client?

If your answer is “yes”, running a time-limited challenge may be the best kick-starting strategy for you to build your list.

Challenges are wonderful because they tend to attract people ready to break past long-term obstacles and take action. Once you understand the psychology of this, you have a captive audience that is not only eager but motivated to succeed.

Make sure that your Challenge benefits and advances your ideal member in a transformative way.

For example:

  • Helps your challenge member achieve a specific goal or fulfill a dream
  • Empowers your challenge member with the confidence and/or skills to finally take the next step
  • Provides her with a knowledgeable community offering support and encouragement
  • Provides her with validation—from other members, as well as from you
  • Allows you to share in—and celebrate—her success

Challenges are exciting. They make people feel “in the moment” and alive. Members of your Challenge are drawn together by a common bond and goal—and they all look to you for guidance.

Reasons to use it:

For your own benefit, there is no more powerful testimony than from a person you have directly helped to succeed in attaining a measurable goal or result. As with a Facebook Group, you will also receive priceless feedback in the form of questions, praises and comments.

You will be able to gauge:

  • What really excites your typical member
  • What she still struggles with
  • What major obstacles she finds hard to overcome
  • What she finds easy
  • What she still needs
  • What she desperately wants next

And, of course, you are interactively engaged—with multiple members and potential clients at once.

How to Use it:

Setting up a Challenge can be done in several ways such as via a Facebook Group, through a membership site—whatever works best for you and your ideal audience.

You can set up instant or mini-challenges in contest form. You can use challenges within challenges to keep your members fired up and moving forward: For example, while you are running your Sixty-Day-Finish-your-Novel Challenge, throw in weekly mini-challenges with prizes, such as “Best Title”; or if your paid Challenge includes a deal on software such as eCover Authority, “Best eCover Design”.

Mini-challenges give people small, attainable goals—and there’s no shame in deciding not to participate in optional mini-challenges. They also boost confidence and keep excitement levels high—and let’s not forget that large successes are often built on smaller successes.

That being said, make very sure any Challenge you create is neither too easy nor too hard. It should feel like a “challenge”—but inspire your participant with the feeling that they can do it!

You can also create a free mini-version of your challenge to inspire people, give them a taste of what you’re offering and create momentum.

Create milestones, check-in points and those mini-challenges—and decide in advance if people will be permanently eligible for the next time you run the Challenge; if they can put your Challenge “on hold” if some life event throws a wrench in the works, or if they have to pay full (or partial) price to start again.

Challenges create focus for you, as well as for your members. They help you fast-track your members—and your reputation-building and visibility too.

Challenges create a core community of loyal, engaged followers and subscribers.

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Get More Prospects and Sales with YouTube Videos

Get More Prospects and Sales with YouTube Videos

Get More Prospects and Sales with YouTube Videos

It’s getting harder to get people to come to your website and stick around long enough to see what you’re offering. In fact, most people spend less than 20 seconds on a website before they click away, never to return. Thankfully, there are solutions to that problem. The way to attract more prospects, engage viewers, get more email subscribers, and make more sales is with video and specifically, YouTube videos.

Create a niche YouTube channel, with lots of great information. You don’t need thousands of subscribers to make it work. You just need to target and market to your viewers effectively on your YouTube channel, as well as other places. Let’s get started by looking at how to create your channel.

Create a Targeted Niche Channel

The first thing you need to do is create your YouTube channel. Give this a lot of thought because you want the name and branding of your channel to describe what your viewers can expect.

  • Design – YouTube allows you to create a cover photo, backgrounds, and other branding that will make a lot of difference for spreading brand awareness.
  • Watermarks – Use a watermark for your videos to help keep your branding there along with the YouTube branding. In your dashboard, under channel, you’ll find a link to “branding” that will help.
  • Intros & Outros – Create a standard intro and outro for your videos. That will also help a lot with the branding of your channel. You can use your video editing software to pop your newest video into the middle of the intro and outro.
  • Keywords – When you create your “about” description take the opportunity to include as much information as space allows using keywords that your audience will use to find you. Look for keywords under your dashboard, channel, advanced.
  • Cross Promote – Include a link to your website as well as your social media accounts. This gives visitors the ability to choose what works best for them. You’ll find this information under the dashboard, channel, advanced.
  • Contact Info – Just in case someone wants to use you as an influencer (that can mean a big payday) include plenty of contact information.

Use keywords and information that helps anyone know exactly why you’re on YouTube and what you’re promoting. Keep it friendly and valuable. Avoid hard sales tactics because visitors are coming to you for information and solutions, not ads, links, and annotations that distract them from getting the info they want.

Create Videos that Get Views & Shared
A lot of people do have videos “go viral” by accident but you can, with planning make sure that you have a bigger chance of a video going viral. Going viral can be defined as being shared a lot more than other videos but how much depends on your niche. For some niches, that can mean a million views. For others that might mean 1000. It just depends on your niche. However, you will have more of a chance of going viral if you follow the tips here.

Lighting & Sound Matter
If you really want a video to go viral, invest in the tools necessary to create high quality videos. Don’t worry about perfection. Just concern yourself with ensuring that people can see clearly and hear what you’re saying. The more professional the video appears and the better the information you provide, the higher your rating will be.

Add in Some Background Music When Appropriate
For some videos, adding a little mood music can be helpful. However, don’t make it too long or loud. Background means that it’s more like subtle white noise. Also, make sure that you have the right type of royalty free music. If you use music that is not approved for this use, your video will be taken down for copyright infringement. YouTube has music you can use but you can also do a search for “royalty free music” to find more options.

Create Custom Thumbnails
The best way to get attention for your videos is to create custom thumbnails that draw attention to the topic you’re going to talk about. You can pick a thumbnail that YouTube snaps from your upload or you can upload a special thumbnail. Branding will be increased if you use custom thumbnails that help the viewer determine what’s inside.

Be Authentic
That might seem like an obvious statement but a lot of people get so nervous doing any type of video that they start sounding like a robot. The best thing you can do is know your topic very well and just keep an outline in front of you about what you want to talk about, then just talk about it without memorization. It’s okay to look down at notes, share your screen, or look away from the camera. However, it’s very important to talk to the people as if they’re in the room with you and are your friends.

Keep Them Short
YouTube videos work best if they cover only one point of action. This means that a video less than 10 minutes is ideal. If you can get your videos down to two minutes, it’s even better since those tend to do best on YouTube. You want to cover one point, one “how to,” and one call to action in each video.

Interview Others
When you can involve other people in your videos, it makes for something more exciting than one person talking to the screen. Interview successful people within your industry, a customer who has had success with your products, or even a famous influencer that you know your audience will enjoy hearing from.

Keep Posting
When you first start posting YouTube videos try to stick to a schedule. Usually, it’s best to post one short video a day than it is to post one long video per week. After you’ve gained momentum, you can slow down, but at first plan on posting one video a day for 30 days for the best results.

Finally, make sure that you appear in your own videos. You can make plenty of videos that don’t include you but the ones that include your face will get a lot more results than videos that only include products or screen shares. With over 1.5 billion active YouTube users online watching videos, you’re sure to find your audience.

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How You Can Use Pinterest to Grow Your List

How You Can Use Pinterest to Grow Your List

Pinterest is a virtual pin board service. Users can create boards that they pin content to. This content is usually in the form of pictures but it can sometimes be video. A user can have multiple boards spanning different topics.

Marketers love Pinterest because it sends customers to their websites. In fact, Pinterest is one of the best social media platforms to use if you’re trying to sell a digital product. Here’s how to use Pinterest to get more traffic which will in turn help you build your list…
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Think of boards as categories. Some marketers struggle with the concept of Pinterest boards. That’s why it can be helpful to consider boards as categories for your content.

If you’re in the health and wellness niche, you may have content on topics like ‘healthy meal prep’, ’10-minute workouts’, or ‘weight loss success stories’. Take each of these categories and turn them into a board on Pinterest.

Describe your pin. It isn’t enough to just grab an image from your website or blog and add it to your Pinterest board. Take a moment to describe what the content is that you’re linking to.

Tease readers about what they’ll get and make them eager to clickthrough. Don’t share something boring like, “Learn 5 Tips for Clean Eating”.

Instead, spice it up a bit. Try using this instead, “Discover the 5 Secrets All Clean Eaters Must Know to Succeed. If you’re struggling with clean eating, these tips will motivate and inspire you. Be sure to download the free eating plan mentioned.”

Sign up for a business account. If you’re using Pinterest to send traffic back to your website, you should make sure you have a business account. This will give you access to statistics about your pins. You’ll know when the best time is to pin, what keywords your audience loves, and which pins get the best traction.

If you’re already created an account, you don’t have to lose your pins. You can simply convert the account by going to Pinterest Business Accounts and filling out a short form.

Use group boards. Some Pinterest users create a group board and allow other members to contribute pins to it. Often, the group board is built around a theme that other users may find helpful like ‘Best Weight Loss Tips for New Moms’ or ‘Styling Tips for Petite Women’.

Group boards usually get thousands of followers, so pinning to one is a great way to increase your traffic. But you need to read the owner’s rules before you attempt to pin. Some owners will want you to email them so they know you’re a real person. Others may ask you to follow them on social media before you contribute.

Pinterest is a great source of traffic, but it can also be a huge distraction if you’re not careful. To keep this from happening, try to schedule your posts and only login when you have a few spare minutes. Otherwise, you may find your productivity goes down when using the site.

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Using Facebook Live to Drive Traffic to Your Website

Using Facebook Live to Drive Traffic to Your Website

Another great way to find free traffic is to use a tool you already have available, and that’s Facebook Live.

This can be useful if you’re counting down to a big launch and want to share it with your community or if you want to show off a new product you’re reviewing.

To get the most out of Facebook Live streams and send traffic back to your website, you’ll want to do these things…

Engage with your viewers. You can do this by paying attention to the comments on your video and responding to them out loud.

Focus on interacting with your viewers throughout your live stream. This builds relationships and makes people want to learn more about you and your business.

Brainstorm content suggestions. It’s great for those days when you feel blocked and can’t come up with any content ideas on your own. Let your audience help you brainstorm something different. You can use this technique when you need new content for your blog or when you’re looking to create a low-cost product.

Once you’ve finished your creation, come back and start a new Facebook live. Tell them about your new content and give a link to it. Doing this is a simple way to drive traffic back to your site. Plus, it makes your viewers curious to see if you used their suggestion.

Have a content upgrade ready. If you’re live-streaming and you want to transform those views into site visits, consider putting together a content upgrade. This should be a relevant gift that your community will enjoy like a quick start guide, fun printable, or a case study.

When you create a content upgrade, make a special landing page for it. Then link to the page in the comments section of your live stream. Viewers who are enjoying your stream can quickly click-through and download your gift.

Ask viewers to share your video. This is a simple way to get more traffic and exposure for your brand. In the middle of your video when you’ve gotten a few viewers, encourage them to click the share button.

You could say something like, “If your bestie is always looking for new makeup tips, share this video with her so she can follow along!”

Now you’ve asked them to share but you’ve done it in a way that reminds them your content is valuable. You’ve made them eager to share because they can discuss your topic with their friends later.

Facebook’s live-streaming feature is a great way to get traffic flowing back to your website. But make sure you have something valuable to share before you start the camera rolling. You want your viewers to remember you and your brand for all the right reasons.

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Write and Speak Your Way to a Bigger List

Write and Speak Your Way to a Bigger List

Write and Speak Your Way to a Bigger List

There are many strategies you can use to grow your list. Today, we are going to look at three list building strategies that leverage audiences that other people have built. When you come up with brilliant content, and you share this content with a new audience, you will link back to your own landing page so people can join your list and learn more about you and what you have to offer.

Guest Blogging

Becoming a guest blogger is not as hard as you might think. In order to find the best opportunities to guest blog, search for the popular and high authority blogs in your industry. Once you have a list, visit their websites to see if they accept guest contributors, and the process for submission. If the blog doesn’t list the opportunity, find the email of the blog owner and pitch yourself as a guest contributor. If the email isn’t listed on the website, you can find the blogger on social media and reach out to them directly there as well.

Before you pitch yourself, read a few posts to get an idea for the style of the blog and the most popular topics. Then, when you pitch yourself as a guest blogger, you can reference a post or two that you liked, and why you liked them. You will also want to give a couple ideas for blog posts you would like to contribute, along with a summary of each proposed post. If they say yes, you can go ahead and write the post and send it to them. If they say no, don’t worry about it. Move on to the next blogs on your list.

If you do get a guest post published, be sure to share it across social media and tag the blog owner. They will love the extra attention, and you will position yourself for future guest blogging opportunities.

Get Interviewed On a Podcast

Podcasters are always looking for new people to interview. Curate a list of podcasts that serve your audience, and pitch yourself as a guest expert. Be sure to find podcasts in your niche that fit your areas of expertise. When you are featured, promote the show date ahead of time, and be sure to share the podcast on social media once it goes live.

Most podcasters will ask you to submit your bio and social media handles so they can include them on the show page and in the show notes. Instead of listing your website home page, link to a specific opt-in page that relates to your show topic. In this way, if listeners enjoy the show, they have a direct link to join your list. You will also want to mention your website and your current opt-in offer during the show.

Be a Guest Expert on a Webinar

As with podcasts, people often look for guests to feature on webinars. These webinars can range from a simple slide show presentation to an on-camera Facebook Live. Webinars are yet another way to get in front of people who are otherwise new to you and your brand.

Similar to podcasters, the webinar host will typically ask for your bio and social media handles so that they can promote your appearance on their webinar. Again, do not send people to a home page. Because a webinar usually covers more in-depth subject matter, it may be a good idea to create a special opt-in for that audience. If you do this, be sure to send people directly to opt-in page, so they can get more targeted information and you can grow your list at the same time.

No matter which one of these methods you choose, be prepared to shine! When you position yourself as the expert, people will want to learn more about you. Give them the easiest way to do this, by directing them to join your list.

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