internet marketing options

Too many Internet Marketing Options? These Great Tips Can Help!

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internet marketing options

Just tossing your product on the market into the realm of the Internet is really a terrible idea. Your product could flop without proper preparation. You need to take time to sculpt your message with your product. Internet marketing can have a terrific effect on your business whatever your field is, but you have to know how to pull off it. Keep reading to explore good internet marketing strategies.

You can trick your potential customers into hitting the ads you might have by creating an image that is discreet which will link readers to a product page. The image are able to use lettering that matches your article’s font and be placed with the article’s end. This does not really seem like an advertisement.

Market your company

growing social media through marketing

Make sure you advertise your company on many popular sites. By investing enough time to advertise on reputable websites, you give yourself a lot of great exposure. Make certain to chose the website your ad will be seen on wisely; it ought to be very popular along with a great place to showcase your business.

Many businesses possess a place on their website called a ‘squeeze page.’ It encourages people to share their email address contact information. The things you will offer here are endless. You could supply a free eBook, some form of other informational product, a discount on a future purchase, etc. You will get somebody else on your email and they will get a nice freebie.

check on your competitors

Always keeping your eye on the competition is an essential strategy for Internet marketing. Look at your competitors’ sites to obtain a better concept of how they are marketing many of their services. At a more in depth level, you are able to compare their traffic statistics with yours. This gives a good idea in what kind of share of the market you’re getting.

When promoting a company via website marketing, focus on detail and also the content you might be providing your web visitors. Do your very best to write original and relevant content for your site. You want people who visit your site to learn something about your business and you also need to make sure that you are adding new content regularly.

Prove your marketing claims

Any claim you create about products on your site ought to always be backed up with proof. Offer concrete evidence; create videos of yourself demonstrating your products or services or the skills required to providing the services you offer for instance. This is why it is so important to sell products that you’ve used yourself.

Wherever possible, avoid spam. Even though it might appear like a wise decision to use automated programs to publish comments on blogs, that strategy will never result in the desired effect. As a matter of fact if you are generic with advertising, customers may be driven off.

The tips in this article can help you in your venture. If you prepare well ahead of time of listing your products and/or services, you’ll have a better chance with success. Soon, you will likely be counting your dollars and reaping the rewards of success. Just remember, internet marketing takes time. So don’t give up on it before you even get the ball rolling.

wistia

Hosting videos for your site with Wistia

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In today’s world video is everywhere. You can find them on websites, social media and the biggest place of all, Youtube. Now, most people who run a website or blog will use Youtube to host the videos on their site. And for the most part, that’s fine.

Why people use Youtube?

Well it’s free… in a sense. Yes, Youtube will allow you to upload as many videos as you want and they’ll even let you do it for free. You can then turn around and embed those videos into your site and life is grand.

But why does Youtube let you do it for free? Well, we are talking about Google aren’t we. It’s because they will display ads for hosting videos for your site. And for some businesses that might be a problem. Because you may not want ads being displayed on your sales pitch video for your product right?

Or what if you’re running a paid membership site. How are you going to show your members videos and keep them from being viewed by the entire world?

Enter Wistia

Wistia

Wistia is a video hosting company. I personally heard about it from Chris Lema. And if you’re in the WordPress world, then you’ve most likely heard his name or visited is blog. Here’s a little clip from that article I read from Chris.

If you’re a business that is trying to incorporate more video, you may want to check them out as well. And if you’re a blogger that’s getting decent traffic, and want control over (insert anything here), then Wistia may be the right choice for you too.

Source: Businesses & Bloggers: You and YouTube may not be in sync

Here’s the gist of why you might want to use a service like Wistia. It all boils down to control of your videos. With Youtube, you don’t have much control over your videos. Sure, you can make the videos public, unlisted or private. But when it comes to displaying ads on your videos, you don’t have any control. And if you have videos you don’t want shared with the world then Youtube is not the choice for you.

While Youtube has the right price for their service, sometime you need something just a little more professional. Now Wistia does offer a free plan and for some people it might be all that you need.

The free plan over at Wistia allows you to upload 3 videos and gives you 5gb a month in bandwidth for those videos. Plus your videos will be displayed in a branded player that says “Powered By Wistia” on a little tab that disappears when your mouse cursor isn’t on top of the video.

Wistia also comes loaded with a ton of cool features for your videos. From analytics, call to actions, email captures and more. To get a better idea, you may want to check out 10 Reasons Why You Should Host Your Videos On Wistia over at Explainify.

Wistia can be a little on the pricey side if you need to host a lot of videos. All of the prices below are monthly.

Free

$0
  • Up to 3 Videos
  • 200GB of Bandwidth
  • Branded Player

Pro

$100/month
  • Up to 150 videos
  • 200gb of Bandwidth
  • Unbranded Player

Premium

$300/month
  • Large # of videos
  • Millions of views
  • Unbranded Player

Wistia used to offer several plans starting from $25 per month. However, it appears as though they have over simplified their pricing model. Personally I think this new model alienates a lot of small businesses from using their service as they used to have a $25 and $50 per month plan.

And with their current pro plan running at $100 per month, this allows you 150 videos with 200gb of bandwidth. The old plan that ran for $100 per month allowed you unlimited videos with 200gb of bandwidth.

YouTube is still the king of free video hosting. But if you need a more professional solution where you’re not displaying ads or related videos to your customer, then Wistia is the way to go. Although a pricey way to go.

Learn CSS Animation for your web projects

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CSS has been around for a number years. The usual method one might benefit from using CSS is to design the look of a website. This is typically done through the use of a CSS stylesheet.

With the stylesheet you can dictate just about everything with regards to the look of your website.

CSS animation?

A lot of people don’t know about CSS animation. Even I thought the majority of animation was done with a javascript code like jQuery. But it appears as though it is not overly difficult to add animation through the use of CSS.

For some CSS Animation Examples visit http://codepen.io/collection/EIqBg/

What to learn CSS from an Expert?

Well, one of my Twitter friend has written a publication on CSS Animations. Her name is Val Head and her book is called The CSS Animations Pocket Guide. And for the time being you can get it for just about any price by visiting her site. Val’s offering a pay as you like system.

But before you do that here’s a run down of what’s in the book.

Part 1: CSS Animation Basics

An explanation of the basic building blocks for creating animations with CSS.

Part 2: Exploring animation properties

Slightly more advanced and highly useful properties like animation-direction, animation-delay and animation-fill-mode give you more fine-tuned control over your animations. This section shows how and when to use these properties.

Part 3: Understanding Easing

Where an object goes is important, but how it gets there is even more important. This section covers the details of the easing keywords and custom bezier functions.

Part 4: Common Animation Tasks

This section puts our CSS animation knowledge so far into practice, going into the details behind four example animations: an infinitely looping animation, animating with steps, using animation-play-state and applying multiple animations to one object.

Part 5: Performance and browser support

This section looks at the practical aspects of using CSS animations in production work. It covers how to determine browser support and what to consider when choosing your approach to fallbacks.

Conclusion

It is a well written book, giving you concise instructions on how to do you own CSS animations. After you finish this book you should be able to make all sorts of object move on your web page.

free photos for wordpress

Get free photos for your WordPress site

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That’s right, I said free photos. Finding free photos that you can use in your site, legally, seems to get harder and harder by the day. But there appears to be a shift in the photo world.

A few weeks ago, Getty Images made using the bulk of their images free. At least through the use of their embed process. Here’s a short quote we found in a post from TheVerge.

Starting now, that’s going to change. Getty Images is dropping the watermark for the bulk of its collection, in exchange for an open-embed program that will let users drop in any image they want, as long as the service gets to append a footer at the bottom of the picture with a credit and link to the licensing page.

http://www.theverge.com/2014/3/5/5475202/getty-images-made-its-pictures-free-to-use

But that story is not why I’m writing this article. Earlier today another big name in the photo world made the leap into letting people use their images. And that big name would be Dreamstime. But they went one step further and created a WordPress plugin.

Lake view

We used the new Dreamstime WordPress plugin to add the above image to this article.

Are there any catches?

Not really. I will tell you that you’re not going to get every image on the Dreamstime site for free. But you can find a ton of free images that you can use in your site. Just make sure that you leave the attribution alone, and you’ll be legal.

There is one thing that you will need in order to download images into your posts. And that is a free account at Dreamstime. But you can also do that while you’re in the plugin.

Installation

Installation works just like any other WordPress plugin. You can get the plugin from the WordPress repository, here. Or you can search for Dreamstime from within your WordPress site in the plugins section.

After you install and activate the plugin you’ll get a new button added to your editor when you go to add or edit new posts or pages.

dreamstime plugin

Once you click on that button you’ll get the interface for accessing Dreamstime photos. You can also access this screen by clicking Add Media, like you normally do, then just click on Add images from Dreamstime.

dreamstime plugin interface

Now if you’re just looking for the free images you need to make sure to click on the tab that says Free Stock Images. Then you can either browse through the images, or search for something in the search box.

They also provide an easy way to purchase and download the commercial stock images, in case you need something better than what’s in the free stock images.

The plugin can be a little slow, but what can you expect, you’re looking through 1000’s of pictures.

Don’t forget to download your copy of the plugin. And share this post with someone you know who could use some free photos for their WordPress site.

Sendy Email Marketing

Is your email marketing killing your wallet?

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If you run an online business then there’s a pretty good change that you do email marketing. You’ve probably got yourself a nice list of people you email newsletters, updates and offers to right?

Maybe you use one of the following services:

Aweber
GetResponse Email Marketing
MailChimp Newsletter Service

Personally, I was using MailChimp. It worked well, fairly easy to use and I was still using their free version. My list was still within the 2000 limit. The emails we’re a breeze to create and life was good.

Until MailChimp decided to suspend the account, I got an automated email and that was the end of that. Any emails I sent to them asking for an explanation were ignored. So it was time to find something else.

I was at that point with MailChimp where I needed to switch over to a paid plan if I had stayed with them. Thankfully I didn’t stay. For the number of subscribers I had it would have cost me $30 per a month. I might send out 2-3 emails a month, so $30 a month is a little steep. And If I didn’t send out any email, end would have still cost me $30 a month.

Enter, Sendy

I came across a product called Sendy. Sendy will allow you to create subscriber lists, campaigns and auto-responders just like all of those services I mentioned above. However, it will do it a fraction of the cost.

Sendy Newsletter

The way this works is Sendy uses Amazon’s SES service for sending out your emails. And here’s a quote straight from Amazon.

Email Messages*

Email messages are charged at $0.10 per thousand.

*A message is defined as a single email communication sent to a single email address. A single email communication sent to multiple recipients is considered to be a unique message to each recipient.

So let’s do some math.

I have 2000 people on my list

I sent out 5 emails to all 2000 people in one month

That makes for 10,000 emails sent

10,000 times $0.10 per 1000 = $1

So I could either pay one of the big mail services $30 for a month or I could pay Amazon $1. I think the math speaks for itself.

Sendy Fees for email marketing

Sendy cost $59 and this is a one time fee, sort of. While it’s true there are no recurring fees with Sendy, your $59 is good until there’s a new major release. The current version of Sendy is 2.1.2. So I will receive updates for free until they move to version 3.0. At which time I’m sure I’ll have to pay another $59.
But you know what, I’m OK with that. Not having to pay $30 or more dollars a month is worth the occasional $59.

The only other fees you have are those to Amazon. Which you pay only when you actually use the service. So if one month you don’t have any emails to send out, guess what, you’re not paying a dime.

Additional Information

Before you start doing back flips about how much money you can save, there are some things you should know. Sendy is a self hosted email service application. What does that mean?

Sendy Report

It means that in order for you to use Sendy, you will need to host the application on a server somewhere. Just like you host your website on a server. Depending on where your website is hosted at, you might be able to setup Sendy as a sub-domain.

While you do get most of the necessities you need for email marketing, there are some things you might miss. The biggest thing you’ll miss is the drag and drop email makers. Sendy does provide an editor to help you create emails. But it is certainly not as fancy as the one in MailChimp.

And of course there’s the set up for Sendy. It’s a little on the technical side, but once you get it setup you’re good to go. The instructions are easy enough to follow, and in about 30 minutes you’ll be right as rain. And saving yourself money on your email marketing efforts.

So if you’re ready to take the plunge, or just curious and want some more information, click the button below and get started.

 

Here’s a little update

After sending my first newsletter with Sendy I went in to Amazon account and checked the billing. And here’s a screen shot of the billing graph.

Amazon Bill

I sent out an email marketing campaign to over 1200 people and all it is going to cost me is a whopping 14 cents! And who said marketing had to be expensive? If you haven’t made the switch to Sendy then what are you waiting for?

Really, take a little bit of time and figure out what you’re spending now in email marketing and check out how much you’re going to be paying with using Sendy.

Better WordPress Category Descriptions

Create better category descriptions in WordPress

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We all know that you can create posts and pages inside of WordPress. We also know that you can create categories so you can better organize your posts. You might even know that you can add category descriptions.

But unless you know how to write html code there’s not a lot you can do with the category descriptions. See when you go to edit a description for a category all you get is a simple text box to put your text into. You can’t do any of the formatting stuff like bolding, italicize or even add a picture.

Category Description Box on WordPress

Now, if you don’t make use of category descriptions, then you’re not missing anything. But if you do use category descriptions what would you say if I told you there was a way to add an editor to the description box?

I think the word you’re looking for is Awesome!

You can turn that sad little description box into full blown editor window. Use the same editor that you use when you make your posts and pages.

Category description with editor tool bar

And the best part is it’s FREE.

All you need to do is install a plugin called Category Tinymce. This plugin was made by Kevin Heath and it has but one simple task. Add the tinymce editor to your category description text box. Thus, making it possible to format your category descriptions without messing with HTML code.

Check out the short video we made.

So what are you waiting for? Grab the plugin and start making better category descriptions on your WordPress site.

While I would like to thank Kevin Heath for making this little gem, but it really should be a feature that is included with WordPress by default.