Tag Archives: make money from home

The meaning of “branding” nowadays

The word “brand” is an extraordinary example how language can change over time. Depending on the application of the word, its use can transform with a use for different purposes.

The origin of the word dates from Middle English when it referred to identifying something by a hot iron. Ranchers in the past used it to show ownership of animals. They would mark heads of the cattle and as it moved across the country for pasture, branding was an easy way to indicate who the animals belonged to. Later on, at the beginning of the 19th century branding started to be used for a specific type of goods. As soon as packed goods and mass production appeared on the market, the source or the manufacturer was put on the products.

For example, Levi Strauss is a very distinguished American clothing company that has been attracting customers for more than a century by their appealing logo. In this case the brand is a kind of non-generic name for a product that tells about the origins of the product. Levi`s are blue jeans created by a guy with the same name. Earlier these names were called “brand names” but today there is no difference between a brand name and the brand. For instance, the Italian chocolate producer Ferrero is a well-known brand and so is their brand name Tic Tack.

Actually the term brand name goes back to the beginning of 20th century when marketers became aware that the very product or service is more important than the sound of names. The name only speaks about the source of the product while the brand tells how people perceive the product and its worthiness. So they started aiming towards creating a particular perception among the customers about the quality and characteristics of the non-generic products or services. This is how the perception was named “the brand”. In other words, this feeling or perception is what people think of when they come across your brand name. It gives them the sense of knowing about you. It can be factual, like how your product looks like, a blog, a network service or any other form of marketing. Also, it explains the emotional side like what it offers-is it informational, entertaining and so forth. To put it simply, the brand name can be seen but the essence of the brand is held in people`s mind.

As the brand is growing and getting stronger the brand name may alter. Apple, the tech giant was initially called Apple Computers but later “computers” was dropped as more and more consumers adopted the more convenient variant “Apple”. Customers` perception is a very fragile issue. If people experience multiple advantages of a product or service they may use the brand name for a wide range of similarities. Take the example with Google. What do you do when you want to look up something online? You  just Google it.  This is what branding does nowadays- product, service, organization, cause, or ideas are not only identified by their names but the mindset of people using them.

Asking clients for feedback

Getting feedback from your customers is an imperative for your business as it helps you sell your products or services in the best possible way. The question is how to get it so that you can find the suitable solutions to convert customers` opinions into more profit.

Customer feedback provides you not only with possible ideas of how to direct your business but it also enables you to do the right measurements of satisfaction with current customers and visitors to your website. In order to obtain reliable information you need to clearly define what exactly you want to improve regarding customer service. Then, how you will utilize the collected data and finally figure out which are the most beneficial channels to achieve your goals.

  • Get in touch with customers via email

Email correspondence can help you receive honest feedback from customers and in this regard you must consider some aspects to assure that your customers are heard.

Firstly, you need to provide your customers with fast replies without any delay. A simple body text such as `We will contact you soon` may convince your customers that their voice is important to you.  Secondly, try to organize a feedback loop within your mailbox. This makes easier to keep things in order. A convenient board system for these purposes is available under the name of Trello, were you can keep your tabs on the projects you are currently working. It serves as a reminder of which customers` requests have been asked before as well as whether to implement certain features. Lastly, use personal emails. Upon signing up through their email, customers can reach your website which gives you the possibility to ask them simple questions regarding the reason why they have signed up difficulties the face, what their preferences may be. This may develop into a thread of correspondence since it is not public, only between you and your customers. Remember to reply on timely manner otherwise your request might be rejected next time.

  • Use surveys to engage your customers

You may find this a rather tough task but once you have gone though it you can have multiple benefits. Survey answers will increase your possibilities to enhance your business since they are more thorough than random questions via email. They provide various types of questions from the simplest yes/no questions to more insightful ones. Pay attention how you formulate your inquiries, let your goal lead to construct short, clever questions one by one. Do not follow similar questions in a row. In case the answer does not require a yes or no answer, do not ask questions that can be answered dimly or without a definite clue. Make them precise without a hidden trap or implication. Customers do not wish to be guided to a desirable answer. Include rating scales for your respondents with a defined format that focuses on specific details you are curious about.

For the purposes of carrying out a survey you can use various tools like Qualaroo for conducting short surveys for a few customers or Survey Monkey which can be adapted to different types of questions.

Tips that guarantee success when starting an online business

Starting and running an online business is connected to many difficulties and issues that should be considered. Secrets to success vary among the individuals engaged in cyber work and tips that warrant a success may differ as well. Yet, here is a hit list of some common hints to follow.

Getting ideas

The capacity of our brain is predetermined to thinking and observations. This is how creativity emerges in the process of acquiring, gathering and storing information. You may never know when the right time is for an idea to come out of the bubble. This refers not only to places but people as well. Never avoid meeting a new face that may give you a refreshing perspective and an entirely new way of thinking. You might have come across useful tips on the benefits of searching the net for solutions, though it can be hard to remember everything we find interesting. Sometimes our mind is crowded with loads of thoughts and data. That is why keeping structured and developed tracks of the records you want to keep. It may be a diary or a bookmark folder in your browser. Something that is easily accessed when work has started.

Sell your experience and uniqueness not your items

Online business is not a physical space where customers and clients can see and touch the products or the service. You may think you offer and sell a service but it is more than that. It is an entire process which involves a range of activities based on your experience that need to guarantee success. The best way to do it is to be different and not imitating others. The more areas you are different the greater chance you have to make progress. For example, you can have a few satellite web pages or projects revolving around one venture. Though, remember that even in the most popular attraction you need to find and launch a very peculiar part that will make others follow you. Do not copy, but let others copy you.

Keep track of the community following you

Even the most successful business might fall apart unless you a constant back up from the people giving assurance that your job is meticulously directed to meet their interests. Try not to rely on your good sense or perceptiveness. What you actually need is a valid metrics to see where you are heading or whether you need to change your trends. Also, do not hesitate to cut off ideas no matter how much enthusiastic that might have looked at the beginning. Keep watching what people like or detest as there is no universal rule about leading a successful on line business. Just like scientists collect data based on field work before they have come up with a revolutionary theory. Measure your impact and keep your eyes wide open for any fluctuation in the process.

Working from home -how to boost your self-improvement

Home working can be an amazing experience for everyone if you have in mind the commodity and flexibility of doing your job. In comparison to the office work, homeworking offers your more flexibility but probably less competitiveness. You are on your own as you dictate your pace without any stress produced by the environment. However, you should know how to become more productive and catch up with the latest trends.

The first thing that pops up in mind when talking about home working is “time”. Creating a schedule according to your needs can be awesome but it can also lead to procrastination and laziness. If you don`t have to wake up at 7.00 am to catch the bus for work, it does not mean that you can`t keep the habit when you work at home. Setting your working time and sticking to it is important to develop good working habits.

Dress code is something that you are bound to in your company so why not to go on with the habit. People often say it might be fantastic being able to stay in your pajamas during work but wearing the clothes that bring to your mind rest and sleep would not make any good. There is no need to dress up but some casual everyday outfit can cheer you up and break the monotony of the day.

When you work from home you are not stuck to work hours as you would be in the office. Though, you should set your specific working hours and stick to the schedule. Find out when you are most productive. Some people do better early in the morning, while others are night birds.

Make sure you set aside a specific place for work. No matter how handy is using your laptop it does not mean you can crawl around your home with it. Being disciplined when working from a particular place can make you get in the working stream right ahead once you enter this realm. It does not have to be a room- a small, cozy corner in a room is enough to be named “my office”.

Being in a place accessible and needed to use by all the family members is not a good idea so you need a quiet space and the possibility not to get interrupted. Make it clear to everyone around your household that you are working seriously and you need your privacy and complete concentration. If it is difficult, use headphones and pick up some good ones with sound cancellation option.

Finally, you can`t work without a break, so go ahead and use your time for a nice cup of coffee. You can do it even better, take the opportunity to stretch your legs and go to the nearest coffee shop. Just as in a regular office when having lunch time.

Remember-you can always change your workload, but always think about ways you can work smarter not easier or harder.

Some basics of affiliate programs and affiliate marketing

Global Network by fdecomite, on Flickr
Global Network” (CC BY 2.0

Affiliate programs are used for businesses when you want to promote your product or service to affiliates.  It can be done either through companies and networks like Awin and Tradedoubler or individually.

Affiliating through networks can be rewarding though it has a few drawbacks. Indeed your business can grow up quickly as there are teams who look for affiliates for you. However, this can be costly, around 30% of your charge of affiliates.

On the other hand, building your own affiliate program can be an enjoyable experience and also beneficial for your online business. You can affiliate people and groups via different sources. LinkedIn is one of the best know social networks for connecting and affiliating. If you want to recruit affiliates you need to advertise your business with a few words. You can mention your conversion rates as well as your preferences what you are looking for. For example, affiliates with product review experiences might be preferable to you, though you should opt for possible testing to each interested party.

So what are the benefits of having an affiliate program?

First of all it is much cheaper, around 5 % for each commission. Also, contacts are more direct because key affiliates can be contacted immediately to arrange promotions. This makes it easier to get a better understanding of the product and the needs of the customers. Also, you can have a complete control of the affiliate program.

A few disadvantages should be considered with this type of affiliating. You will have to take care of all the payments and commissions. It might be difficult to monitor the performance and variables as it can be time consuming for one person to do it.

When affiliating, it is important to set your aims and objectives. You may want to increase sales over a year or to increase the order value in a defined period of time. After you have defined the aims you need to build the strategy of how to find the right affiliates. There are a few steps of this strategic engagement. You must clarify how the affiliates can promote you. Then, you must define what will be promoted through cost-per click and one of your aims can be to increase your visibility within search engines. There are other things to think about, like linking to your website straight away or by using your URL.

Next you will have to define the cost you are ready to spend on a new customer. Calculating the commission is important because the profit and costs must relate to visitors, leads and sales. It means you decide how you want payment to go: per click, per lead or per sale so that you improve your conversion optimization.

Speaking of affiliating marketing strategy, there are many more details to take into consideration, such as customer retention rate, customer lifetime value and  the ability to calculate the optimal commission without putting your business into a financial risk.

What is AdWords?

AdWords is a system for advertising provided by Google where advertisers bid on specific keywords so that their adverts appear in Google`s search results. It`s an online advertising platform and the most widely used online advertising network. If you want to advertise your business. This tool is the right place to reach new customers and let your business grow.

Advertising through Google AdWords can be done across the two central networks –the search net and the display network. The search network is the advertising when clicks are paid. Advertisers make offers on keywords connected to their business. Thus, users who are searching a particular item or service will be able to see the advertisement for a keyword they have put in the search field. This is also known as paid search as what customers do is paying per a click. With the display network, those who advertise can put advertisements visually looking like banners on websites that are part of the display network. The display network is used by millions of global internet users.

How to use AdWords

The question is how to stand out of the crowd when the world in a highly competitive online business world. Here are some helpful copywriting tips that will enable you to create desired ads that will attract customers. The very first thing you should keep in mind when you start using AdWords is that the number of words is limited to 130 characters. It means, you have 25 characters for your headline, 35 for the URL, and 35 words for the first and second lines respectively. These are the lines where you give the description of your ad.

Be purposeful when you decide what keywords to use in the search for your target audience. Be familiar with them using “you” so that they know you speak directly to your audience. Also, tell them what they will achieve of your product/service in a specific way. For example, instead of saying “How to become a good portfolio writer” you can title it “How to become a good portfolio writer in ten steps”.

Make use “camel case”. The words “PowerPoint” and “SlideShare” are examples of camel case as well as “AsWords”. They are compound words and each of them begins with a capital letter. This is related more to the URL than to you as combination of long and multiple words are easier to be read when word beginnings are marked with capital letters. For instance, if your website`s URL is creativecontentblogger.com, it`s easier to read if you write it as CreativeContentBlogger.com.

Creating attention grabbing Adwords is not that much difficult if you consider the above hints. A catchy logo design with some ASCII characters, like percent sign, registered trademark, plus sign and the asterisk can be all used at one place and can do a great job. Finally, do not forget that people want to know what they are supposed to do. So, let them use a Call-to Action and you may have an online order of your dreams.

If you want to make money from home, this tool allows promotion and advertising controlling your budget, so I think it is very useful foor all the projects that are just starting.

Branding your blog

Branding is essential for your blog as it creates important messages for your clients. It helps them see how different you are from your competitors.

When you create your content it is necessary that you have in mind what picture you present to your customers.

Here are some hints to follow for the purpose of having a branded blog.

Come up with a creative and catchy blog name. Naming gives the first impression to the audience. Therefore make sure is it related to the product or service you are blogging. Also, are easy search terms included in the name?

Select a unique address. Many bloggers use WordPress.com but having your own URL is more authentic. Put a tagline as well as taglines tell more about the blog`s content. What is the blog about? An effective keyword in the tagline is a must. For example, if you have a blog on learning Spanish, you can define the type of information you present with “Actionable Spanish. “

Carefully choose the blog theme and the colours. The theme gives the overall framework of what you present and adds up to your brand name. Pay attention to the sample texts given by default and change them so that the captions look catchy to readers. Colours are an integral part of branding, so at this point keep in mind the psychological effect colours have on people`s perception and feelings. Now you can say I am not following this. It is because speed is against design and I bet in speed above everything when it comes to SEO results.

Typography is another element to be considered when branding a blog. It refers to the text in a blog and it can be incredibly influential on visitors to your blog and may have either positive or negative impact on to prospective customers. Typography expresses the general attitude about your content. The more creative and innovative you are, the more you can reinforce your personality and ideas by using the right typography.

Creating a blog brand in content writing for example, means considering the length of posts and the language that is used. Depending on the topic, you may go for longer articles, such as in language learning instructions or you may just share short notes in the entertaining business. As for the language, no matter whether you write in a standard language or in slang, good grammar and correct spelling are important.

Another authentic feature when branding your blog is to produce a voice for your blog. Remember that in the cyber world there is no real human interaction and you need to be recognizable as a brand among your visitors. Here comes the true meaning of “a brand”. Ask yourself these questions: “How do I sound to my readers? Will they recognize me? “

Finally, you need to protect your exclusiveness. You may choose one of the many public online copyright licenses.  Decide about the terms of use on your blog and whether you allow others to use your content. If you do, on what conditions they can do it. Do not forget, you are the one who is creating the brand.

The importance of fluent communication with clients

Someone once said that the client is always right. But until getting to say that your client is always right, you have to first get to know some information about who you are working for.

Why is this important?

The client is ultimately the one who decides whether he or she wants to work with you or not. Knowing who your client is gives you the upper hand. You can learn to adapt to their needs and what things to say or not to him or her.

Adapt your offer

Adapting your offer to the needs of your client is key. For example, if you are a Spanish content writer and your client is from Latin America, then you should adapt your vocabulary to that of the region, as it can be a bit different from the one in Spain.

Spelling and vocabulary are not the only things that you should take into account. For example, when applying to a job which requires technical writing skills, send them a sample of similar work, as opposed to your poems from 5th grade that you are so proud of.

Communication is key

If you are not sure what to do regarding an aspect, you should always double check with the client, as it is better to be safe than sorry. For example, if you are writing a SEO article, you should ask beforehand if the client wants the keywords to be highlighted, in bold. An other example would be whether the post should include images. All these aspects are key, because knowing them beforehand could save you a lot of work and time.

Feedback

The job ends, but your relationship with your client does not always stop here. It is important at the end of every task to ask for feedback. By knowing what you did wrong, you can improve your skills and not repeat the same mistake again. Also, you can use this opportunity to modify the things that your client is not happy with in order to ensure that you have delivered your task in a satisfying manner. It will leave both you and your client happy with the job that you have finished.

Respect deadlines

Regardless of your client, respecting deadlines is very important. Not doing so can reflect badly on your part and it can also have negative consequences such as: not being paid the full amount or the client never working with you again.

Knowing who your client is represents a key aspect in any type of business, regardless of whether it is freelance or not. You should take into account the above mentioned elements as they can take the relationship with your client to the next level. These little things make you get higher paid jobs and long lasting relationships with clients. Here is an other article that you might find useful.

How to Write reviews for affiliated products or services

Affiliate marketing is very useful to enhance sales of goods or services.  The workflow is easy:

  1. You have a website about a topic related
  2. Join an affiliate program
  3. Place adverts
  4. You get revenues from the conversions (not from the clicks)

One of the most common ways to do it is by writing reviews about products and services and adding your affiliate links in the page.

In order to be able to write a good review you need to make a solid strategy and keeping in mind certain useful information.  Although the specifics may vary for different sites there are some standard requirements.

First of all, you need to be familiar with the product or service that you present. Describe how it functions and give reasons why people should buy it.  Using the keywords users will use when researching in Google searches is an imperative. Don’t think that success is easy. Profitable affiliate programs and keywords have a great competition. It is difficult to cope with the complicated search engine algorithms and it always take time and money.

Next, your concept should be original. Offering a unique content with a possibility to engage users and leave comments is something that creates user-based signals of a frequently visited website on Google. If you do not allow users’ voices to be heard, they will soon leave your website.

How are products sold? You can use your blog to earn from affiliate marketing. Convincing your readers that the product or service is really good because you used it yourself is not enough for them to spend their money. You need to know the importance of audience size and the types of conversion rates that you may expect. Of course it is crucial to know the quality of visitors and the type of marketing you use, but numbers are important. If 100 people spend 1$, then 500 readers might bring 500 $. Easy to calculate, the more readers you attract, the more money you will make.

Speaking of blogging and making sales, unfortunately most readers expect information to be free, therefore consumable content is more attractive to people. If you write about widely used devices like cameras or mobiles, your readers are likely to buy what you write about. However, with blogs which are not about products it is more difficult to affiliate products to promote but you can often find something to sell. For example, if you write about online working you can focus on tools you use and then review them and make money from affiliated sales.

In the following link you can watch how purchase can be made through an affiliated link

You can find a number of really good product review site on the Internet with some examples on the following link.

In general, apart from the description of the product or service, you have to make an effort to show the user how easy is to get and use the product. Your objective is the reader visualizsing themselves using the product or service. Also give additional information like, niche, about the founder, what id their goal and key challenge. Name the key stats. Facebook, Twitter, Google = and so forth. Also, give a top content, some top promotions and what readers can learn from it.

I have a broad experience writing reviews for affiliate purpose. If you are looking a writer for affiliate reviews in Spanish do not hesitate to contact me.

Rules for working from home

Working from home might seem like the ideal thing for you. You have are your own boss, you have a flexible schedule and you can dress however you want. In addition, you can select your own clients and take on whichever amount of work you feel like doing for the day.

It seems almost ideal, right? Well, it is what most people wish for in their lives, but it can also go wrong if there is a lack of structure. Do not worry, because this post will help you get a bit organized and less distracted. So let’s get to it.

Below are some rules or tips (call them whatever you want to) that might help you.

  1. Set a place specifically for work

Even though you are your own boss and you can theoretically do anything that you want to do, working chaotically might not do the trick. You will still need to have the idea of a home office, whether it is simply a table in the kitchen or in the living room. If you want to go all the way and have the possibility, you can even set aside a special room for this purpose, or simply isolate a space which you use it as a working area. If you need more tips about how to make your home office a more efficient space, click here.

  1. Create your own schedule

Strict schedules might have been the thing that made you decide to start freelancing or working from home as opposed to working in a company. Well, the thing is that you do need some structure and planning in order to get things done. For example if you have an online blog, you should at least try to make a content plan for the year or at least for the month. This way, you will not be left without ideas and keep your blog up to date. If you have other tasks, it is always good to keep an agenda as this way you will make sure that you will complete all of the tasks in time.

  1. Networking is very important

Stanley Milgram once conducted this experiment known as the small world or the lost letter experiment. The subjects had to get a letter to a certain person, but if they did not know him, they had to give it to someone who they thought might know him and so on, until the person got the letter. The result showed that you need approximately 6-7 people in order to get to who you need to. This is why networking is important. The more people you know, the easier it is to get to who you need. Also, it can help your business or blog get more attention.

So these are only some rules for working from home. Here is another article that might interest you and it has more rules that you should consider when working from home. I hope they are useful and maybe you already apply them.