Blogging The Right Way

If you are setting up an online business, or you are building a website to support your offline venture, then blogging is a great way of driving customers to your site. Doing so allows you to promote your products and connect with potential customers. However, blogging only works if you do it well. Here are some tips to make sure you blog successfully.

Regular new posts

It is important to put fresh new content on your blogs on a regular basis. This will keep readers interested and make it more likely that they will return. Keep the articles relevant to your products and services with current issues relating to your industry. You don’t need to add new posts every day, twice a week is usually sufficient.

Keep your blog clean

Readers want to read relevant and current information. Any posts you have with outdated information or historical issues you should either remove or update. This will prevent visitors from having to trawl through old blog posts to find posts that include current information. Having out of date posts can also lower your search engine ranking, so it is worth taking the time to sort this out.

Use professionals

If you are not the best writer in the world, then it may be better to use the services of a professional to write content for your blogs. This way you can be sure that the spelling and the grammar are correct, the content is engaging and the post is search engine optimised. Content writers can be hired relatively cheaply to write content as and when you need it for your blog. Also, consider using a company that provides specific website hosting for businesses, as they will be able to help you with many of the technical aspects of your site.

Social media

Writing a blog is one thing, attracting visitors to it is quite another. One of the simplest ways to get visitors to your blog who will engage with the content is to make effective use of social media sites. Make sure you have accounts on all the biggest of these, such as Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. Post links to your content on each of these. Don’t limit yourself to adding links to your blogs; add pictures and comments to keep your social media pages interesting. Also, make sure that visitors are able to ‘like’ and ‘share’ your blog posts directly from your blog.

Be informative and interesting

Although one of the purposes of your blog is to promote your products and services, constantly writing promotional content will drive visitors away and they will not be able to engage with the content. Therefore, it is essential that you manage the ratio of informative and promotional content.

A recommended ratio is 20 percent promotional content and 80 percent informative and educational content. Regardless of whether the content is promotional or educational, it must be interesting enough to attract the attention of readers and make them want to visit your blog and website again.

Use meta tags

Meta tags are a type of coding that you use for aspects of your blog including headings, sub-headings and content description. These HTML attributes help you to get your posts listed on search engines and are also important for user click-through in SERPs (search engine results pages). It is worth taking the time to learn how to do this effectively.

Connect with readers

Customers like an interactive experience. Providing this will help you to connect with customers. In turn, this makes it more likely they will click on links to your products or visit your blog again. One way of doing this is to end a blog with a question. This opens up the option for them to make a comment or ask a question themselves.

Keywords are key

Using keywords in your blogs is important for adding links to your posts and also to help optimise your blog for search engines. The keywords must be relevant to the content and related to the products and services you provide. However, it is important to be careful to avoid ‘keyword stuffing’ as this can have the reverse effect of what you were hoping to achieve as many search engines do not like this practice.

By following these tips, using a blog can have a positive impact on your businesses success. It can help drive traffic to your site, increase the number of potential customers you have, develop interest in your business and increase sales and profits. Why wouldn’t you want that?

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Prism Werks Web Design, Social Media and Consulting

prism-werks-web-work-blogs

Web Design Services

Are you a new or an established company?   No matter what your level of business development, you need to expand the reach of your business to your customers.  What better way then with Prism Werks’ Web Design Services?

We have used this company and HIGHLY RECOMMEND THEM!

Your company’s website should also be an extension of your personality.  It is a vital tool for you to use to expand your growing business.  Your potential customers use the Internet to research businesses that they are willing to do business with.  They want to know more about you and the products or services that you offer.  What better way to reach those potential customers and introduce your company, than your very own custom website designed by Prism Werks.

Do you know what you want but just can’t put it in a format that will get the exposure?  Let us do the heavy lifting regarding the technical aspect of design and functionality for your website.

We will create web pages (prices may vary depending on what you need) according to your needs.  Each website will include basic services for:

  1. Spam blockers
  2. Basic SEO integration
  3. Google Analytics
  4. Instructions for user interface

They can also help with your Social Media:

Here are some simple questions you should be asking yourself:

1.  Who is your target market?
2.  How do you reach your target market?
3.  Do you have a blog?
4.  Do you use photographs?
5.  Do you have conversations with your followers?

Social Media can be overwhelming for most people, especially if you’re a small business and you just don’t have the time to add another task to your list.  Prism Werks can handle all of your social media needs buy implementing a few simple strategies.

PRISM WERKS

 

Posted in Consultants, Social Media | 1 Comment

Networking is DEAD

Do you go to networking events with a pocket full of business cards
and hand them out with your elevator pitch in hopes of generating a
couple of leads?

Do you meet people at trade shows or seminars and
hand out a few more, figuring maybe they have a friend of a friend who
might be interested in what you offer?

And how well does that usually turn out?

I don’t know about you, but I have literally hundreds of business cards
(all neatly stored in cases and folios) for people I’ve met at Chamber
of Commerce events, social gatherings, meetups and any number of
“meet-and-greets”. And I’ve never worked with a single one.

It’s not that I didn’t need insurance. Or my carpet cleaned. Or a party
planned. Or a massage. It’s just that I couldn’t possibly tell you who,
in that massive pile of dead trees, is who.

If that sounds like you, you may be relieved to hear that networking is dead… at least in
the traditional mind-numbing way that we’ve been taught to think about it.

You may also be relieved to hear that the new networking is less painful and results in more business.

Want to know how it’s done?

Then you’ll want to read this book.

A Tale Of Two Networkers

The intriguing thing about this book is that it’s fiction.

Instead of the usual business book that talks at you like a grad school
lecture, this one is told as the story of two individuals who want to
boost their networking power.

One is a bit shy and doesn’t have a lot of connections. One is outgoing and has a whole lot of connections.  Neither is generating any business.

When they’re introduced to a professional networker – correction, someone who knows how to help people make connections that matter – they learn how to do just that.

I had the chance to ask the authors why they chose to tell this story as a
fable instead of writing a traditional business book and this is what
they said:

Networking is Dead By Melissa G Wilson and Larry Mohl

Read more at Web Search Social

BUY THE BOOK

Posted in News and Events, Recommended Reads | Leave a comment

Is Teresa Jo Young in Columbus Ohio Scamming People with Hennessey Car e mail?

BEWARE - I came across a new email scam – well, new to me – it was the first time I had ever seen it. 

Last week I got an email, stating Hennessy was looking for people with cars to help advertise their product. 
We are currently seeking to employ individual’s in united states. How
would you like to make money by simply driving your car advertising for
HENNESY.

Concept: HENNESY seeks people — regular citizens that drives to go
about their normal routine as they usually do, only with an advert for
“HENNESY”  advertised on your car. The ads are typically vinyl decals,
also known as “auto wraps” that’s almost seem to be painted on the
vehicle and which will cover any portion of your car’s exterior surface.

What does the company get out of this type of ad strategy? Lots of
exposure and awareness. The auto wraps tend to be colorful, eye-catching
and attract lots of attention. Plus, it’s a form of advertising with a
captive audience, meaning people who are stuck in traffic can’t avoid
seeing the wrapped car alongside them. This program will last for 3
months and the minimum you can participate is 1 month.

You will be compensated with $500 per week which is essentially a
“Rental” payment for the use of space. No fee is required from you,
“HENNESY” shall provide experts that would handle the Advert placing on
your Car. You will receive an up front payment of $400 inform of cheque
via courier service for accepting to carry this advert on your car. It
is very easy and simple, No application fees required, Contact the
E-mail along with the information’s as requested, if you are interested
in this offer.


But then the  sign off signature was a bit weird…


-Edwin Berg- of Agent No: 9876.

E-mail address: trustedone@att.net

You will be contacted you as soon as this information’s is received.

Kind Regards

Marcos Maldonado
Hiring consultant

Gamma advertising Agency�



So I looked up Gamma  Advertising - and sure enough they have several offices, including Chicago, where I live.  So I thought this sounded legit.  Plus, there are actually 2 cars not far from where I live, that I see all the time, that use these car wraps for advertising. AND I had seen a Hennessy vehicle in Chicago!  So it sounded very feasible and legit. ( I did not catch Hennessey was spelled wrong in the email! Shame on me!)

So I sent the company my basic information. They said great, lets get started.  We will send the money to your PayPal account. – Now most scams I have seen, involve sending the person a bogus a check, that they hope a bank will cash. – So this Paypal routine I figured, what could go wrong?  They were going send me $1100.  They said for me to keep $500 for my first payment, and I was to wire $500  to the car place. And there $100 to cover the fee.  Red flag!
Now I am thinking, why would I wire the $500 to my local car place, who is going to do the work?   So my Paypal email comes – and sure enough,  it looks fake. This is a portion of the email…..

YOU HAVE GOT A NEW FUNDS


Specialist Company (CROSS COUNTRY LOGISTICS COMPANY)
Name: Teresa Jo Young
Address: 804 Colton road, 
City: Columbus
State:Ohio
Zip Code: 43207

I thought Gamma Advertsining, in Chicago, would be doing the work. Now it says Teresa Jo Young of Columbus Ohio is the “specialist”!  So I Google her – and what do I get??  A whole list of mug shots of Teresa Jo Young,  from Columbus Ohio. She has been arrested 3 times!
http://www.justmugshots.com/ohio/columbus/1502613
http://www.justmugshots.com/ohio/columbus/1239780
http://www.justmugshots.com/ohio/columbus/1452484
I also Googled  CAR WRAP SCAM and a whole bunch of stuff comes up.
Moral of the story – People do in fact get paid to wrap their cars with advertising. This is a new trend. In a city of 50,000 people a vehicle wrap is seen 8.5 million times per year. Compare the cost of a billboard to the cost of a vehicle wrap and you will see how much you can save. and heads will turn!  There is nothing more cost effective then a wrap for your one car, or your entire fleet!

 However, drivers are not usually found through emails.

Posted in Facts and Myths, News and Events | Leave a comment

The Benefits of Getting Payroll Service Software

With so many things to juggle with your small business, sometimes it pays
to outsource a few of your responsibilities to a trusted company. One of the
most complicated parts of running your business is the financial aspect. From
payroll for your employees to keeping track of your transactions, it pays to
keep things simple and organized. That’s why you should consider consulting a
payroll service company to get on board with your business.

 
Times are tough in today’s economy and often times employee benefits  can be one of the first things to go. However, with the right
payroll service company you can offer your employees a few perks for their hard
work. For example, you can set up an account for each of them in which you set
aside a small portion of their paycheck that can be used for doctor’s visits and
prescription costs. You don’t have to sign up for a full insurance plan, but the
little bit you set aside could prove useful for you and them in the future. It’s
tax free for them and you can even receive tax rebates and deductions as a
result.
 
And if an employee gets hurt, you can set up a pay-as-you-go worker’s
compensation account that you can pay into monthly. This could be a big help as
you may have to pay a one lump sum if you don’t. That could be a big hit in your
finances if not. And speaking of worker’s compensation, if you sign up with the
company, you’ll receive all the latest labor law posters (which are mandatory
and could result in a heavy fine if not displayed properly).
 
Running a business is hard enough. Why not look into getting some help with
the tougher aspects so you can focus your time and energy on the things you care
about. It’s good for you, your employees and business in general.
Posted in Interesting data, News and Events | Leave a comment

SOBcon 2013 Happens in MAY in Chicago!

 This is one the BEST conferences

you will EVER attend!  

From May 3 to 5, 2013, at the Summit Executive Center in downtown Chicago, we cordially invite you to be a participant in something special – our 10th SOBCon.

SOBCon is more than just a conference – it’s an interactive 3-day
business “think tank” that has been described by past attendees as

  • A brilliant collection of outstanding minds”
  • “Amazing and informative about business and marketing”
  • “An inspiration incubator”
  • “TED meets Startup Weekend”
  • “An oil change for the brain”

This SOBCon will build on our tradition of turning ideas into action, by focusing on

The Customer-Centric Business, Where Collaboration IS Key To Innovation

Come to SOBCon Chicago 2013 to learn how

Customer-centric businesses are more responsive and faster growing -  Get 6 models for building deep working relationships with customers across every square-inch of your business.

Knowing what to measure is more important than measuring. – Discover
how to adjust your current business metrics and information filters to
have a customer-centric understanding of your competition. 

Leadership is the art and practice of wielding influence -   Learn how to foster and sustain persuasive influence through information sharing. 

Engagement drives richer customer experiences  –    Use gamification to move from transactions to meaningful interaction. 

First impressions create lasting connections -   Build meaningful and valuable customer relationships from the very first contact point. 

Learning need not be lonely -  
Experience true collaboration in action. Discuss the models in depth
with your mastermind team and leave the session with new strategic
action plans.  

We’re also very excited about our presenter lineup for the event – check out who’s confirmed so far:

(Just added 2-18!)) Leadership maven and best-selling author Steve Farber

NY Times bestselling author and WGN Radio Host Carol Roth

Lifestyle entrepreneur & founder of Location 180 Sean Ogle

NY Times bestselling author and Human Business Works CEO Chris Brogan

BlissDom events co-founder and Blissful Media Group CEO Barbara Jones

Chief Customer Experience Investigator™ & founder of 360Connext Jeannie Walters

Author of “Social Marketology” & DragonSearch CEO Ric Dragon

Co-Founder and CMO of Copyblogger Media Sonia Simone

Entrepreneur and Glam Media Co-Founder Dianna Mullins

Entrepreneur, Humanitarian and Co-Founder of BlissDom Events Alli Worthington

Innovation consultant & principal of Primed Associates Drew Marshall


Join us in Chicago - sign up now and save $100.  

Hurry, the offer expires on February 28th.

Posted in News and Events | Leave a comment

Gender Gap in Retirement Savings Growing, says Study

Women continue to be affected
disproportionately by the economic downturn and this is presenting itself
through the ever-increasing gap in retirement savings, when compared to men.

According to the eighth annual
Scottish Widows Women and Pensions report released on October 22nd 2012,
the gender gap in retirement savings has increased by over 10 per cent in one
year.

Half of women report feeling
worse off than 12 months ago, compared to 45 per cent of men.

When it comes to retirement
savings, women are now saving an average of £776 annually less than men for use
in retirement. This is drastically higher than the £700 gender gap evidenced in
2011.

For example, if a 30 year old
woman keeps up with this annual rate of saving, at retirement age (65 years
old), she will have a £29,800 shortfall in today’s money, compared to an
equivalent male.

The amount of women not saving
anything at all for retirement has also grown since the previous year.

The study was based on a sample
of 5,200 adults and showed that more than a quarter (26 per cent) of women are
presently failing to save any amount of money for retirement. In 2011, this
figure was 23 per cent, three per cent lower than this year.

In contrast, only 19 per cent of men
admitted to not saving anything for retirement, said the report.

This disquieting shortage of
provision has reverted back to levels from three years ago, rolling back any
improvements made in 2010 and 2011.

Women find it harder to save money
for the long-term and retirement because of important lifestyle differences,
such as having a full-time caring role or being employed part-time, explained
Lynn Graves, head of business development at the firm.

This is why it is vital that
employers, the government and the pensions industry raise awareness of the
gender gap in retirement savings to assist women in prioritising their
pensions. Lombard Odier has a
specialist occupational pension team that can assist people in planning for
their retirement.

Over the last year, the savings rate
among women has decreased immensely partly due to the repayment of short-term
debt.

A third of women (31 per cent) are
putting debt repayments ahead of saving for retirement.

The average amount owed – excluding
mortgages – increased extensively from £10,174 in 2011, to £10,922 in 2012.

Within widespread economic
uncertainty, many people in the UK are under pressure regarding their household
finances. However it is obvious that women are side-lining long-term saving in
favour of a more short-term approach, with 42 per cent of women placing living
expenses above retirement saving this year.

Further to this, the most popular
reason given by 31 per cent of women for saving long-term is to “save for a
rainy day”, not to save for retirement.

The perspective of saving for a rainy
day shows that women see their savings as a fund to dip into anytime to cover
any unexpected costs, not one to be protected for the future to pay for
retirement.

On the positive side, women who are
already saving for their pension would rather cut back elsewhere if faced with
an income drop, than decrease their pension contributions. Just three per cent
said they would decrease their pension contributions.

Additionally, 28 per cent of women
surveyed are planning on boosting their contributions over the next year.

While women are right to focus on
ensuring their debts are managed, alternative sacrifices need to be made to
make sure retirement planning is in place. Lombard Odier has recognised
expertise in occupational pensions, including tax consultants, actuaries and
lawyers to help people make the most of their pension plans.

Posted in Interesting data, Useful Links, Useful Tips | 1 Comment

Is Apples iPhone 5 Worth Upgrading To?

 We live in a society of speed. 

We want it NOW! 
What the heck were we 
doing 20 years ago??

The new iPhone 5 has some new features. Faster Connectivity. Faster Processor. Thinner. Lighter. Better camera. Better display. Smarter SIRI. More Storage choices. And a better battery. 
Nothing REALLY earth shattering. My opinion; if you have the 4 – don’t upgrade now. Wait for the 6. If you have a  3, it is worth upgrading for the $200 charge.
 Some people say, if they have a 3, maybe just get the iPhone4s for $99….the answer is no. Spend the extra money and get the 5, for sure!
FYI – ever wonder how much profit Apple is making?

Apple’s basic new iPhone costs the company just
more than $200 to make, according to a preliminary component report from
analysis firm IHS iSuppli.

The materials in the 16GB model of the
phone, the firm said, cost Apple $199 while manufacturing shakes out to
about $8 per phone. The iPhone 5’s materials come to a slightly higher
total than the iPhone 4S. Andrew Rassweiler, IHS’s senior principal
analyst for teardown services, said that the lowest-end iPhone 4S had a
bill of materials of $188.

The 32 GB version costs Apple $209 to
make, while the 64 GB is estimated to cost $230. With carrier subsidies,
the iPhone 5 retails at $199, $299 and $399. While there’s no unlocked
version of the iPhone 5 for sale, carriers list the full prices of the
device at $649.99, $749.99 and $849.99 without a contract. More info at Daily Herald. 

Posted in News and Events | 2 Comments

Iran Wants to Help Facebook Cleanse the World of Porn

Iranian officials are hoping to team up with Facebook in an effort to remove Pages and Groups that feature pornography or are soliciting prostitution. More broadly, the Iranian police force has announced plans to cleanse the Internet of content its country deems inappropriate.

The new tidbit comes from the semi-official Iranian news agency ISNA (via the Associated Press), which interviewed Commander Kamal Hadianfar, the head of Iran’s cyber-police. He promised the country will work with Facebook for the new initiative, but did not elaborate on what the plan would entail.

“Pornography is a crime not just in Iran but also in other countries such as the United States,” Hadianfar told ISNA, according to a translation by Radiozamaneh. “In 2010, Facebook served as a free domain for criminals, but in the name of God and with the presence of the police over the past 15 months, we have made many significant moves to cleanse social networks, especially that of Facebook.”

Good Luck with that!

Read  more.

Posted in News and Events, Social Media | 1 Comment

Using Social Media Tools to Manage your Finances

If you’re a small business owner, you’re most likely well aware of the importance of utilizing
social media to drive traffic to your website and communicate with your clients. Yet there
are other online tools out there that can help you with the more technical financial aspects
of running a business. Whether you’re interested in increasing your capital with short term
investments, researching your competitors’ statistics, or streamlining your online banking,
there are networks and platforms that can help you.

Assess your Competition

Learning more about your online competition can help you focus your own marketing efforts
more effectively. Your competitors will include not only those who are competing with
you in terms of search engine rankings, but also in terms of sales figures in your industry.
Using social media can help you identify these competitors. A quick Google search will
reveal who is winning the rankings war and can direct you to their websites to learn more,
but a Facebook business search will direct you to a wider range of businesses selling similar
products.

With access to websites and social networking profiles, you can take a look at your
competitors’ customers and their demographics. You can then use this information to target
that demographic you may be missing out on with your own marketing strategy.

Research Short-Term Investment Opportunities

Social networking also leads to new sources of information for investment research purposes.
If you’re in need of a way to increase your cash flow for your business, you can turn to a
variety of short term investments. The goal is to make as much money as possible in a short
period of time with the lowest level of risk involved. Money market mutual funds are one
option, pooling the resources of several investors into securities with large denominations.
Look for a mutual fund that allows you to access the money when you need it.

You can learn more about the best options by following financial expert social media
accounts online and reading financial betting  blogs.
Trading penny stocks and looking for the best
spread betting offers are other
means of potentially making money with a quick turnaround rate. There is a gamble involved
in any short-term investment, so be sure to use online research tools whenever possible.

Interact with Financial Institutions

Staying savvy with your finances can also include interacting with your bank on a more
regular basis. Many major financial institutions have made a recent push to become more

interactive. Following your bank on Twitter, Facebook, or other social media sites can help
you learn more about new financial products and promotions. Some banks will offer rewards
for those who recommend their services, and you can receive financial advice while learning
new tips to get you ahead with your banking and investments.

Posted in Facts and Myths, Interesting data, News and Events | Leave a comment