5 Ways to Make a Genuine Connection with Your Virtual Community

You’re a good person. I’m a good person.

But how do we know that about one another?

How can you build trust across the virtual divide that separates us?

If you can’t reliably connect with the prospects you want to reach, you don’t have much hope of building a profitable online business.

Over the years when I’ve met readers for the first time, they’ve said, “I feel like I know you!”

That reaction happens because somehow my work at Big Brand System has connected with them.

Genuine connection in the virtual environment takes time. It’s not simple or easy.

But it’s a worthy goal.

Here’s how to make community connection happen …

Read article …5 Ways to Make a Genuine Connection with Your Virtual Community

How to Stand Out from the Crowd with an Unforgettable Personal Brand

How to Stand Out from the Crowd with an Unforgettable Personal Brand

Oprah Winfrey has a stand out brand.

If I say her name, you get an instant image in your mind of Oprah: her physical appearance, her personality, her TV shows, her movie roles, her magazine.

As these thoughts flow through your mind, consider that they have been carefully crafted by Oprah’s marketing team over many years to create a consistent brand image of her in your mind.

After all, what is a brand but a harmonious series of images, thoughts, and beliefs about a person, business or product?

We often talk about creating a strong, consistent brand for your business or product.

What if the “product” you’re selling is you? Can you stand out with a personal brand that’s as strong as Oprah’s?

Read article …How to Stand Out from the Crowd with an Unforgettable Personal Brand

Persuasive copy

5 Copywriting Tricks for Turning Blah Text into Persuasive Copy

Feeling overwhelmed when writing your content?

You’re not alone.

Learning to write better copy can be frustrating. Everyone has more tips, more advice, more copywriting rules.

Write tight. Use attention-grabbing headlines. Add features and benefits. Don’t forget the hook. Check your grammar rules and punctuation. No jargon. No adverbs. No … whatever.

Trying to remember the advice makes your head spin. Following the rules sucks the energy out of your content (and out of you, too).

But writing doesn’t need to be such an exhausting, grueling and tortuous process. It can be relatively simple.

The five most critical copywriting rules follow.

Concentrate on these five basic rules only, and you’ll find yourself writing pretty persuasive copy. You’ll turn so-so text into seductive content, and win more business.

Sound good?

Read article …5 Copywriting Tricks for Turning Blah Text into Persuasive Copy

Design: It’s Not Just Wrapping Paper

brand marketing is like choosing how to wrap a gift

I’ve been invited to a birthday party, and I want to get a fabulous gift for the person who we’ll be celebrating. What’s the best way to choose something they’ll like? I can’t start picking out wrapping paper colors or writing the message on the gift tag quite yet.

Think About the Recipient

I like to think about what their hobbies are. How do they spend their free time? What’s their daily life like? When I focus on them, it’s easier to find a gift they’ll enjoy.

Once I’ve purchased a gift, it’s time to wrap it. I can’t wrap the gift until I’ve thought about who it’s for, and I’ve purchased it, right?

I have to know who I’m giving it to, and what I’m going to give before I look for a box and pick out the wrapping paper.

That’s the way it is with design, too.

Read article …Design: It’s Not Just Wrapping Paper

Plan a Promotional Page that Provokes Action (And Download a Free Checklist)

If you’re putting together a promotional message for your small business, whether it’s a newspaper ad, a web landing page, or a flyer, there are design principles you can put to work for you that will make your page more effective.

These principles aren’t just about color and typefaces.

Good design starts with a well-thought-out message and then it focuses on the visual.

Master the basic content and appearance elements, and your promotions will move your audience to take action.

brand marketing with a promotional page that provokes actionA checklist for now (and later)

Are you planning to work on promotional materials in the future?

Download this editable Promotions Checklist to use as a reference every time you start work on a promotion. Going through this checklist will ensure you include the most important elements for a successful piece. You’ll have a plan to follow that will guide the process.

Read article …Plan a Promotional Page that Provokes Action (And Download a Free Checklist)

Strip Down to the Bare Facts

He that uses many words for explaining any subject, doth, like the cuttlefish, hide himself for the most part in his own ink.  —JOHN RAY, Naturalist (1627-1705)

brand marketing is stronger when you strip down to bare factsThree hundred years before the Internet, John Ray wrote the words above. How could he possibly have known that blogs would explode, communicating with your customers in a conversational tone would become the norm, and “hiding yourself in your own ink” would turn out to be the gravest mistake a small business could make?

Because using too many words does just that: it hides you, and it obscures your message. You spray a bunch of random words out, your readers’ minds wander, and you lose their interest.

Good marketing holds interest, so let’s see what you can do to edit your copy until your message shines through.

Read article …Strip Down to the Bare Facts