Tag Archives: Marketing

Famous Closing Words and Winning Conclusions

by Lauren

Lauren, My Web Writers Team Member

“With a good conscience our only sure reward, with history the final judge of our deeds, let us go forth to lead the land we love, asking His blessing and His help, but knowing that here on earth God’s work must truly be our own.” -J.F.K.

This conclusion to President Kennedy’s 1961 Inaugural Address represents the features of a winning conclusion. Why? Because President Kennedy’s closing words provide a powerful statement that stirs the heart and engages the mind. In this case, the message to go forward doing good in the world and to make a difference not only calls for reflection but for action.

All winning conclusions, whether written or spoken, contain some element that provokes and enables the target audience to respond to the conclusion’s call to action. Inspiring and motivating closing words aren’t only for those in a leadership position. They are as equally germane to any materials included in a marketing campaign. Given that a company’s goal is growth, all written and spoken materials should include a winning conclusion whose closing words resonate with the target audience.

How do you come up with winning conclusions that rival the likes of famous closing words like John F. Kennedy’s? Three keys come to mind:

  • connect with the target audience’s,
  • aim high,
  • provide your audience with the means to act.

Conclusions that Connect
Returning to President Kennedy’s famous closing words at his inaugural address, we see that his vocabulary drew everyone together into a sense of oneness. He achieved this by using the words our, us, and we. The conscious decision to position himself among the American people instead of above them reassures the people that he, himself, expects as much of himself as he expects of them. Moral of the story – make sure that your conclusion speaks as much about what you can do for your target audience as about what you ask the customer or client to do for you in purchasing your product or employing your services. The relationship you aspire to forge is not one-sided but mutually beneficial.

Conclusions that Aim High
Although not explicitly stated, President Kennedy’s closing words aimed high. How so? He spoke of generations beyond the one to which he was sharing these closing words by alluding to history being “the final judge of our deeds.” In essence, the true measure of his generation’s legacy would not be measured by the certain quality of their own life but by the potential good of future generations, the beneficiaries of their noble deeds. Along this same value of aiming high, President Kennedy’s mere proclamation to reach the moon, inspired a whole generation to galvanize their efforts in making that happen.

When putting the finishing touches on your company’s marketing materials, aim high! Just go for it! If you think that a new customer will realistically just buy one of your products, encourage them to purchase two in your conclusion. TV infomercials are notorious for aiming high. In their ten minute segment of closing words they offer free bonuses or second, free sets for customers who respond to the call to buy their item. Although infomercials use high pressure tactics to get people to aim high, strive to convince your customer to aim high and buy more than they originally intended, or to subscribe to your service for a longer period of time than anticipated, by reemphasizing the real benefits you offer.

Conclusions that Provide the Means
President Kennedy’s famous closing words recognized that his call to put country before self could require sacrifice and struggle. Given the demands of his call to action, he declared to his audience the means that would enable them to realize Kennedy’s vision for the country. Those means consisted in “asking [God’s] blessing and His help.” Unlike Kennedy’s reference to God as the means to carrying out his famous closing words, closing words for marketing purposes should include your phone number, mailing address, email address, website url and social media sites. In the end, your objective is to begin a long-lasting dialogue with your target audience and, if they cannot contact you, the dialogue never begins.

If your marketing efforts aren’t garnering the kind of growth in customers or clients you want, then maybe your conclusion’s closing words and content are weak. Does your conclusion connect with the target audience’s, aim high, and provide your audience with the means to act? Look it over, make some adjustments, let an objective eye critique it for you and, if you just haven’t managed to come up with those famous closing words that will earn you a winning conclusion, consider outsourcing your project to professional content writers whose business it is to bring a winning conclusion to all textual materials of your marketing campaign.

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Filed under Closing Words, Conclusions, Marketing

Harnessing the Voice of the Consumer Leads to Successful Marketing

by My Web Writers

The voice of the consumer has never been more important to a company than now. Marketing has traditionally functioned on a top-down model. That is to say that companies used all their resources to come up with a logo, slogan, and static image that appeared in commercials, magazine ads, in-store display material, and brochures. How times have changed!

With the advent of the Internet and social media tools, the nature of building your consumer base has evolved. Marketers can no longer win over customers by manipulating them with catchy lines and controlled taste tests. I remember the commercials where a company would pit its product against the competition in a taste test. The unbiased participants would taste both products labeled with A or B and say which one they thought tasted best. The commercial would allow us to watch the person say that the sponsor of the commercial’s product tasted best and then, at best, hear a five sentence statement on why it beat out the competition. The company would rely on those “testimonials” to sway the public to purchase their product.

Taste test testimonials have now been replaced with consumer-generated forums, blogs, reviews, tweets, Facebook, and other social media postings. These powerful tools have, in essence, taken away business’ power to dictate the communications agenda and placed it squarely in the hands of the consumer. So what is a company to do? How should it approach its marketing strategy given the new voice given to the consumer? Marketing agencies and departments need to shift from the traditional top-down, static positioning of their product or service in front of the eyes of the consumer, and join in the discussion. Here are some specific bottom-up, conversational, marketing ideas:

  • get a Facebook page,
  • put a review or feedback section on your website,
  • provide as many different “contact us” options as possible,
  • make online chat a possibility,
  • post a video on YouTube,
  • invite customer’s to submit an original commercial that you’ll put on your website,
  • get Facebook, Google +1, Tweet, and share links on your page,
  • participate in forums,
  • give links to positive reviews written by a third-party, and
  • address negative reviews in a positive manner.

These are just a few ideas of how to join in. Embrace the empowered voice of the consumer and make it work to your advantage. Instead of devoting resources to generate the profile of your customer, let the true profile of your customer come to you. Monitoring the social tools that are being used by your customers helps ascertain a true, organic identify of your audience. A company may think that their product or service targets a specific audience without realizing that it is actually meeting more success with another audience. Another benefit to embracing and encouraging the voice of the consumer lies in the fact that free and open discussion has the potential to create additional buzz about your product or service.

This leap of faith in acquiescing some marketing power to the consumer is definitely a leap of faith. Control freaks can barely imagine letting go of the reins to such an extent. However, joining the company’s voice with that of the consumer does not ultimately result in “letting go of the reins” but in harnessing and monitoring the opinions and comments of those that the company is trying to please anyway. So, get out there and join the conversation. If venturing into the virtual world of social media and Internet dialogue seems too foreign or new to you then solicit the services of content companies like My Web Writers to handle your social media needs.

~Marni

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Filed under Customer Profile, Marketing, Social Media

Marketing Content for Brochures

by My Web Writers

Oftentimes, companies take great pride in christening their emergence in the business world with printed brochures. Unfortunately, unless the premise and objective of the brochure is clearly identified, the brochure turns into an informational treaty instead of a persuasive marketing tool. For that reason, great care should be placed in well-thought out, and well-designed content that addresses each of the following aspects of the brochure.

Objective and Role
A brochure is not a stand-alone piece in a company’s marketing strategy. Take the time to know

  • how the brochure fits into the sales process (are you introducing your company or selling a product?),
  • the desired outcome of the brochure (will it establish credibility or make people aware of your website?),
  • and what action you want the reader to take (do you want the reader to request more information or take advantage of a promotion?).

Answering these questions establishes the framework necessary for effective marketing content.

A major concern which paralyzes anyone marketing a service or project in a brochure is whether or not to add prices. The creator of marketing content can easily put that debate to rest by simply defining the brochure’s objective. If you are generating interest in your company then don’t include prices. If the brochure comes into play near the close of a sale, include prices. Having established the objective and role of the brochure, all questions concerning marketing content should be easily resolved.

Know and Hook the Audience
Equally important to identifying the brochure’s objective is the need to define and understand your audience. What concerns your target audience? What is your relationship with the audience? A successful brochure contains effective hooks.  Just like a fisherman studies the appetite of the fish he hopes to reel in in order to choose the right hook, those creating marketing content for brochures must understand the appetites of the target audience, identify the hooks that appeal to those appetites and incorporate them into the brochure. Don’t put all of your hooks at the beginning of the brochure, spread your hooks throughout the brochure’s content so as to not lose the interest of your reader. What creates a hook?

  • a free report,
  • a discount,
  • a pre-order option,
  • an articulation of the target audiences concerns, etc.

Nature of the Content
Content isn’t just about vocabulary. It’s about voice, credibility, and atmosphere. Address the reader in an authoritative yet engaging voice. The tone of the brochure needs to inspire confidence in your reader’s mind as to your expertise and approachability. Address your target audience directly so that they feel as if you are engaging in a one-on-one conversation with them. Add atmosphere and warmth to your brochure content by painting a scenario in which the reader can imagine himself or herself reaping the benefits of using the products or services affiliated with that brochure. Avoid any potential monotony and substantiate your credibility by adding customer testimonials or third-party verification to the brochure’s content.

Simple Yet Intriguing Content
Resist the urge to sacrifice the persuasive nature of your brochure with too much information. With so many great features associated with your innovative product or top-notch service, it is easy to fill the brochure with paragraphs that talk all about you and forget the audience. This is not to say that a thorough discussion of your product or service’s features or technology can’t be included. Highlight these aspects in easy-to-read graphs, charts, diagrams, bulleted lists, or photographs. Write captions for these more visual components of your brochure because they carry a lot of value. In fact, captions rank as some of the most read and remembered text because of the simultaneous transmission of meaning through both language and image.

Make the Brochure a Keeper
The most effective brochures are those that the reader finds value in holding on to. How does one encourage the reader to keep the brochure even after having gone through it in its entirety?

  • Add how-to’s, tips, recipes, or useful information.
  • Include a calendar highlighting important dates.
  • Put sweepstakes or promotional event information on it.
  • Provide all of your contact information with maps and directions if appropriate.
  • Print discount coupons in the brochure.

Call to Action
A brochure loses the potential of fantastic marketing content if it doesn’t end with a call to action. After having gone to such herculean efforts to engage your target audience at every level, don’t forget to invite them to act. Leaving a call to act out of the marketing content would be akin to spending countless hours making and displaying the perfect cake only to never let anyone taste it. Without the invitation to act, you risk having done nothing more than present your target audience with a creative, well-designed, and well-written brochure that ultimately misses the mark of generating a lead or a sale.

Effective marketing content for brochures doesn’t come together by happenstance. It entails a very deliberate and researched process. Remember the adage that if it isn’t worth doing right it isn’t worth doing at all. Businesses who want to succeed want and must create a winning brochure. If the effort required into creating effective content for winning brochures stretches your resources too thin, then outsource your content writing to content providers like My Web Writers.

~Marni

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Filed under Brochures, Content, Content Marketing

Revise for Mis-Tweets – A Social Media Marketing Story from Bill Hybels and Willow Creek

by My Web Writers

A Marketing Example- Effective Social Media

Recently, I summarized my experience at Willow Creek Association’s 2011 Leadership Summit.  While attendees flocked to various simulcast sites throughout the United States to learn from and be inspired by highly engaging business and church leaders- there was a glitch.

Howard Schultz, the Founder and CEO of Starbucks, was slated as the keynote speaker, but backed out of his contract a week prior to the event.  Bill Hybels, senior pastor of Willow Creek, had about a week to simmer emotions and to prepare a speech addressing the last-minute, speaker change:

I outlined my thoughts on this change in Hybels, Starbucks, and a Teen and noted Starbucks’ clever burying of bad PR with good PR that week.

Jim Mellado, Willow Creek Association President, debriefed with Bill Hybels about the 2011 Leadership Summit and asked Hybels to describe how he crafted the speaker change announcement.

The Writing Process & Your Marketing Team

Hybels wrote a draft. He then asked for input from his wife, a professional writer and editor. He took the draft with changes to his daughter who added a youthful editor’s perspective. Then, he presented the draft to the Willow Creek Association team, church development team, campus pastors, and elders. Each group fine-tuned the document.

Consider Social Media & Mis-Tweets

Finally, the day before the Summit, after he thought his document was complete, Willow’s social media expert approached Hybels and suggested, “Just for fun, go over every single phrase and see how it could be twisted or mis-tweeted.”

“Oh my,” Hybels responded looking upward, “that’s another layer in all this, isn’t it?”

He took the manuscript home and “changed about a half a dozen other little phrases” for Twitter.

Willow’s perceptive leadership, content, and social media team helped Hybels to draft a graceful and memorable leadership statement.

Who reviews your most important speeches, articles, and press releases? You might not always have the time needed for feedback, but when possible, do accept input from others. Expert marketing, social media, and editing teams are invaluable.

~Jean

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Filed under Marketing, Revising & Proofreading, Social Media, The Writing Process, Twitter

Customer Profile Needs Customer Behavior

by My Web Writers

Content may be king but the consumer is at the center of everything. This shift from static content to dynamic consumer has become more evident by the latest efforts by the big search engines to create a more real-time, interactive, and dynamic search experience. This emphasis focuses on predicting the motivations of the inquirer’s online behavior before displaying the search results. How does their shift from the static to the behavior inform the type of strategies that online companies should use in their marketing efforts? It simply boils down to needing to understand the target consumer on both a static profile level and a real-time, behavioral level.

Customer Profile
Initially, the task of a marketing strategy was to create a profile of the target consumer.

  • age
  • education
  • income range
  • location
  • skill level
  • etc.

An accurate consumer profile permitted the marketing team to gear the language to the level of the consumer. In addition, this information helped ascertain the best marketing approach whether it be via e-mails, print, radio, or social media. In addition, the marketer would make assumptions about whether the target consumer would best respond to ads conveying a sense of attitude, value, pleasure, sentimentality, or any other specific quality based upon the age and income range.

Many companies, recognizing the value of this information, solicit a general profile through customer surveys, through the membership enrollment process, and through sweepstakes entry forms. Some of this information is also gleaned through a questionnaire or a discount code extended while following up on the purchasing experience of a customer. However, the customer profile, although still a valuable tool, provides a more static depiction of those individuals that the marketing team is trying to reach. For this reason, information beyond just a customer profile need to be incorporated into the marketing strategy.

Customer Behavior

Customer behavior adds an important new layer to getting to know the company’s target customer. Understanding why and how the consumer arrived at purchasing a product is equally important to a company’s success and growth. When a product transaction occurs face-to-face those types of questions can be immediately asked. In the virtual world of online business, that type of information is a bit more elusive.

Google recognizes the importance of understanding consumer behavior that leads to conversion and has created effective behavior analysis tools like Search Funnels. Google explains that “Search Funnels can help you understand how users search for your products before converting so that you can optimize these conversion paths.” Google describes Search Funnels as “[a] set of reports describing the Google.com search ad click and impression behavior leading up to a conversion.” Notice the action words of “how users search” and “impression behavior.”

Obviously, efforts to simply identify the stagnant characteristics of the target audience are no longer enough – at least not in the online world. It’s no longer a question of who but a question of how.

  • How Does my target consumer shop?
  • Does my consumer research before buying? What is the time lag between first click and conversion?
  • Is my consumer an impulse shopper or a methodical shopper?
  • What type of path does my shopper follow before converting?

Understanding your customer at a behavioral level can help make better, more effective campaign management and content decisions. You may discover that a certain content keyword, previously considered ineffective in leading to a conversion or a sale, actually plays a key role in that conversion simply because of its role in search assists. Much like basketball players get credit for having made the pass that led to a basket, keywords that led to a conversion should be credited for their role as well. Those keywords may not have been the last click at a point of sale, but they may have been the keywords that consistently lead the consumer to the purchase. Understanding how your target consumer interacts with various online ads also helps the management team identify where they can make the best use of their advertising money.

In conclusion, once the profile and behavior of your target customer has been established, great care should also be made in assuring the quality of the content put into your marketing materials. Much like the outsourcing of profile and behavioral analytical services is beneficial to a company wanting to make an accurate depiction of their target consumer, outsourcing copywriting services also assures that the company’s marketing materials will appeal to both the search engines and the consumer. We, at My Web Writers, can generate all of the quality content that you need for your blogs, social media feeds, articles, white pages, e-mail campaigns, product pages, and more.

~Marni

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Searching for Fun—Social Media Contests Boost Rank & Sales

by My Web Writers

Generating traffic and flow to your website is the goal in search engine optimization (SEO). One of the most popular ways to increase sales and ranking is through the use of social media. As tweets and posts circulate, readers click on links that seem relevant in content and are directed to your website. There are several strategies to keep traffic streaming to your social media sites, but the most popular is the use of contests!

Twitter Contests/Ideas

• Hold writing contests: Let contestants enter writing pieces and choose your favorite 5. Post them on varying days to your website and tweet them away to your followers. They will be thrilled to return each day to read and vote on their favorite! Give the winner a permanent spot on your website, a writing job for your company, or a small cash prize!

• Post different pictures that your company is considering for its front page. Your Twitter followers can vote for their favorites and ask their followers to vote as well. This will generate the traffic to your webpage, so be sure to have eye-catching and interesting web copy so that people stay on your page for a while.

• Re-Tweeting contests: A re-Tweeting contest gives prizes to the person that re-Tweets (or reposts) your links the most. This inevitably will generate traffic as it will reach massive amounts of people.

Facebook Contests

Firstly, it must be said that holding contests and promotions on Facebook costs companies money. If you can afford the fees, promoting on Facebook is a great option as you must purchase ad space in order to promote a page/contest. Promotions and contests that give prizes often require permission from Facebook before they can be run.

• Fan fanatics: Host a contest that will encourage fans to invite their friends to view, like, and become fans themselves of your webpage. There are new apps that track friend density on Facebook which can make tracking this contest a breeze. As more and more people “like” you page, this will show on their walls and subsequently on the walls of others in their networks. This idea is similar to having an ad on Facebook (but it’s FREE)!

• Voting on __________: Fans will return to your Facebook page to vote on their favorite picture, post, intern, etc. which will generate traffic to your page and entice friends of fans to get involved as well.

Tips for Successful Social Media Contests

• Consider using 3 rules or less for your contest—don’t make it too involved
• Be sure the prize interesting & intriguing
• Do your research & market to your target audience
• Keep the contest light-hearted and fun
• Set a goal for your contest (know where you’re going with it)

No matter how you choose to generate traffic, social media PA takes time (and sometimes money). Sound like too much thinking, time, and effort? Let My Web Writers put a professional writer on your account. We have a marketing writer that can help boost your social media optimization, thus increasing rank and business for you.

~Lauren

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Filed under Marketing, SEO (Search Engine Optimization), Social Media, Social Media contests

Marketing in Resumes

by My Web Writers

During lunch today a friend and I were speaking about resumes. The discussion led to proper ways to market yourself on paper. I immediately thought about my work as a content writer selling products.

Selling products, much like selling yourself to future employees, is a process that takes time and needs careful consideration. Whether writing your resume or content for a client, try these tips for successful marketing:

Choose exciting action verbs that describe your skills.
o Words such as “has” or “worked” don’t intrigue readers. Try words such as “developed”, “trained”, “earned”, “collaborated”, or “produced” to hook the reader and keep him or her interested in you or what you’re selling.

Use at least three details about yourself or tips about the product you’re selling.
o Explain and describe how your skills or products are valuable. If you give your reader some ideas of how to use what you’re selling (i.e. yourself or products), they’ll be more interested in it and your creativity.

Keep the word count down (limit yourself to one line per skill)
o When marketing yourself: Interviews are short and employers don’t have time to read three pages about you. Tell them what they would need to know if there was no interview. Let them use interview time to follow up with further questions.
o When marketing products: Remember that no one has time to read pages of reviews or descriptions. Give a glimpse of product ideas that cover different types of uses.

First impressions are important. Resumes say a lot about you and your abilities. It’s crucial that you take some time to think about what you want people to know about yourself professionally. Follow the above tips to help guide you through the process and remember My Web Writers is only a call or click away.

~Lauren

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Filed under Marketing, Resumes, SEO (Search Engine Optimization)