Friday, August 31, 2012

4 Ways to Promote Your Blog Without Spamming


One of the keys to blogging successfully is knowing there's a thin line between self-promotion and spam. It's important to remember that you need to build relationships instead of spreading links everywhere. If you just place links, you'll likely turn off potential readers; if, however, you take time to particpate in conversations and get to know people, they'll want to know more about you and what you do.

Check out these tips for promoting your blog without spamming:

  1. Read and visit other blogs. The other blogs in your niche aren't your competition or enemies -- they're your colleagues. So, instead of worrying about another website taking your traffic or who's higher on Google, use other blogs to your advantage. Take part in the comments, and provide a useful viewpoint. If you leave a thoughtful comment, other people may be inclined to visit the link in your signature line. One other thing to keep in mind: It's considered spam if you put your links anywhere but the appropriate space. So don't put links in your comment post unless you're invited to do so.
  2. Join and participate in Facebook groups. Whatever topic you blog about, there is, more than likely, a Facebook group about it. There are a couple of reasons to join: You can share news and tips with others in the group (which will likely lead to ideas for new posts);and as you build relationships and friendships, they'll go to your profile and check out your other links.
  3. Guest post on other blogs. Find the top blogs in your field, and offer to write a blog post. Or, consider doing an exchange with other bloggers -- that way, you can each benefit from each others' traffic. (Just don't mistake guest blogging for supplying someone else's blog with content for free).
  4. Post frequently. The more you post, the more likely people will come back to your blog on a consistent basis. If you leave people to wonder when you'll post again or only post sporadically, readers will respond the same way. They may bookmark your site to read later, but they probably won't stop by frequently. But if you're known for posting often, readers will come by more frequently.

For 13 more tips, check out 17 Tips for Promoting Your Blog Without Being Spammy.

How do you promote you blog? Please share below by leaving a comment! 

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Monday, August 27, 2012

Motivational Monday - 8.27.12

Motivational quotes to inspire you

"The achievement of your goal is assured the moment you commit yourself to it."

- Mark R. Douglas

Friday, August 24, 2012

Social Media Sharing: 3 Questions to Ask Before You Post

The good and the bad about social media is that there aren't any firm rules. You can choose how you want to use it, post whatever you want, connect -- or not -- with whomever you want. For example, some use LinkedIn to connect only with those they already know, and some use it to expand their network and are willing to accept invitations from anybody. Both approaches are totally valid and the best one for you depends on the goals of your business.

But, just because there aren't any firm rules doesn't mean there aren't some best practices you should be following. If your intention is to use social media to build your business, then focus on activities that advance your cause, and stop doing or minimize everything else. If you're killing hours of time playing games or watching videos of kittens, and then complaining that social media takes too much time and doesn't work for you, you should re-evaluate what you are doing.

And this lack of rules leaves some people a little lost. In every social media workshop I've attended, those who aren't active yet say they haven't jumped in because they really don't want to post what they've had for breakfast that morning. And yes, if you feel compelled to post things like that, then please don't bother. But there's so much information that you could be sharing.

What you need to do is ask yourself these three questions:

  1. What can I share to enhance my credibility? The majority of your posts should be intended to increase your reputation as an expert in your field. That means sharing articles and resources -- your own and from others -- that your followers would find helpful. It's perfectly okay to share something personal every once in a while, that's what adds dimension to your profile and helps people connect with you on other levels, especially if they share your same interest.
  2. What can I share to help me stay in touch? Social media makes it easy to keep in touch with so many people in your network in just minutes a day. On Facebook, you can see which of your friends is having a birthday. On LinkedIn, you can see who just got promoted or changed jobs. It takes just seconds to say "happy birthday" or "congratulations" or to "like" a post. It's like tapping someone on the shoulder and saying, "Hi, I noticed you today."
  3. What can I share that will help someone else? Again, it takes seconds to share a link or retweet a post on social media, which means that in seconds, you can help someone in your network spread their message. No matter how busy they may be, they'll notice you in a very positive way because you've helped them. Every little touch point helps strengthen your relationship over the long term.

Hopefully, this simple but powerful framework will help you become more visible and relevant in your industry and to the people in your network, and spark many more opportunities to advance your goals.


(c) 2012, Liz Lynch International LLC
Liz Lynch, author of Smart Networking: Attract a Following In Person and Online, shows accomplished business professionals how to connect to the right people and attract the opportunities they deserve. To become a more visible leader in your organization or industry, visit www.LizLynchOnline.com.

Monday, August 20, 2012

Motivational Monday - 8.20.12

Motivational quotes to inspire you!

"Success is a state of mind. If you want success, start thinking of yourself as a success."

- Dr. Joyce Brothers

Friday, August 17, 2012

5 Types of Stories to Tell on Your Blog



Are you a blogger who's stuck with no ideas? If so, here are a few stories to try on your blog:

  1. Personal Discovery Stories. Tell your readers how you discovered a lesson. This will show them how similar you are to them, and it may provide practical advice on how they can learn from your experience as well.
  2. Success Stories. Share how you achieved a goal. These can be motivating or inspiring for your readers.
  3. Failure Stories. These stories can be very powerful, especially if you can show some of the lessons you learned from your setback.
  4. Biographies. Choose a key person in your niche, and share that person's story with your readers. Pull out the valuable parts that can be applied and used to improve your readers' lives. 
  5. Reader stories. Ask your readers to share their stories/experiences on a particular topic. You might start things off with your own short story, but then quickly give it over to others to share. 
For nine more ideas, check out 14 Types of Stories You Can Tell On Your Blog

Need some inspiration in your life? Check out my shop, The Motivation Station

Monday, August 13, 2012

Motivational Monday - 8.13.12

"The discipline you learn and character you build from setting and achieving a goal can be more valuable than the achievement of the goal itself."

- Bo Bennett


Friday, August 10, 2012

9 Simple Solutions for Procrastinators

By Christine Kane



Irony: As I started to write this article, I thought, "I'll just go play one Sudoku game first." I caught myself in the act and marched to my laptop.

People who say that procrastination is about laziness are probably the same people who think that anorexia is about not eating enough.

Procrastination isn't about laziness. It's about fear. It's about perfectionism. It's about overwhelm. We all experience it, and there are some tricks to help you get moving again.

Here are nine ways to break the procrastination habit:

When you get an idea, do some little thing to begin. When I read Stephen King's book On Writing, I noticed something. I noticed that when Stephen King gets an idea, he writes it. Immediately and imperfectly.

Most people get an idea. Then they sit there. They wonder if it's a good idea. Then, they wonder if it's a good idea some more.

Got an idea? Begin it now!

2. All hail small chunks of time! Lots of us complain about having no time. My guess is that we all have lots of time. It just doesn't happen to be all at once.

Are you waiting for many hours of spare time to begin your idea, your project or your taxes? Stop waiting! Learn to use the spare half hour that comes up here and there. (I gave myself 45 minutes to write this article just to take my own advice).

3. Agree to do it badly. Set a goal to do it badly. Set a goal to show up. Let go of doing it ALL or doing it WELL.

Some of my coaching clients' biggest victories have a lot more to do with getting over perfectionism and fear than they do about getting it all done perfectly.

4. Commit aloud. Call a friend and say something like this: "I'm going to spend the next half hour working on my Law School Essay." Then go do it.

Call the friend after the half hour and make her congratulate you. Repeat daily.

5. Define quantities. Nebulous goals make for nebulous results. "I'm gonna get my office organized" is a lot like saying, "We oughtta do something about Global Warming."

Most procrastinators have a hard time defining quantities. We think everything needs to be done NOW. When are you going to do it? For how long? Which part of your office? The file cabinet? Or your desk? Define the goal and acknowledge its completion.

6. Install this System Upgrade into your Mental Hard Drive: Less is More. Have fewer goals. Have no more than three priorities for a week.

Why?

Because you're not lazy. You're just trying to do too much.

Find out what it feels like to accomplish one thing instead of not quite getting to everything. Wow -- what a difference this makes!

7. Do it first. My first coach made me write songs first thing in the morning. He told me to schedule the two-hour chunk as my first activity upon waking.

Why?

"Because you're telling the universe that this is your priority. And then the universe lines up everything to align with your priority."

Action grounds your priorities. It makes them real. It also makes your day easier because you're not wasting energy thinking about this thing you're supposed to be doing.

8. Avoid nose-bleed activities. Email, voicemail, web stats -- any activity that bleeds itself into your whole day becomes a non-activity. It becomes a nose-bleed.

When you do it all the time, you never complete it. You just let it slowly drain the very life force from you. Define times for these activities. Then, turn off your email, your cell phone, your web stats until that time comes.

9. Don't ask how you "feel" about doing the activity. Have you ever committed to getting fit? And then when the alarm goes off, you lie in bed, thinking, "Do I really feel like going to the gym?" (Like you even have to ask!).

Change this pattern. Make your decision the night before. Commit to getting up and going right to the gym, the computer, the blank canvas. Don't have coffee and sigh and think, "I'll probably feel more like it at lunch time." You won't!

If it's a priority, don't waste time asking yourself how you feel about doing it. Feelings are an easy out.

___________________________________________________

There. I did it. I wrote this article. And now, I don't even want to play Sudoku! How about that?

Christine Kane is known as the Mentor to Women Who are Changing the World. She is the president and founder of Uplevel You(TM), a million-dollar company committed to the growth and empowerment of entrepreneurs and creatives around the globe through teaching not only high-level cutting-edge authentic marketing business strategies -- but also transformational techniques to shift mindsets and wealth. To get started with the very basis of upleveling your life and your success, download Christine's popular "Create Your Life Kick Start," which includes her eBook "The Complete Guide to Vision Boards." It's totally free. 

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Monday, August 6, 2012

Motivational Monday - 8.6.12

Motivational quotes to inspire you!

"Don't wait until everything is just right. It will never be perfect. There will always be challenges, obstacles and less than perfect conditions. So what. Get started now. With each step you take, you will grow stronger and stronger, more and more skilled, more and more self-confident and more and more successful."

- Mark Victor Hansen

Friday, August 3, 2012

3 Ways You're Wasting Time (And Don't Realize It)


Feeling overwhelmed? It might be time for you to reconsider how you're using your time. Check out three ways you could be wasting it (without even knowing):


  1. You put quick tasks on the back burner. If you can schedule an appointment or pay a bill in a few minutes, do it right away. Putting tasks to the side for later (no matter how dull) is a common way small business owners waste time. 
  2. You don't have a clear social media strategy. Limiting the amount of time you spend on social media will definitely help your productivity. However, even if you set aside only an hour a day for social media activity, you'll still waste time if you don't have a game plan, according to Cathy Sexton, productivity coach. "Social media is a part of your marketing plan. You really need to understand what your desired results are."
  3. You do the same things over and over. Yes, customer communication is important. However, if you're always answering the same questions from different clients and customers, you're wasting time, according to Chris Guillebeau, author of The $100 Startup: Reinvent the Way You Make a Living, Do What You Love, and Create a New Future. So, instead of starting from scratch every time, Sexton suggests making a template for routine tasks like email replies to common questions, client letters, invoices and meeting agendas.

See four more ways you could be wasting time by checking out 7 Ways You're Wasting Time and Don't Even Know It

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