MIH 046:5 Ways to Set Yourself Up as an Expert

MIH 046:5 Ways to Set Yourself Up as an Expert

Listen to “046:5 Ways to Set Yourself Up as an Expert” on Spreaker.

Are you an expert? If not, what’s stopping you?

Setting yourself up as an expert online isn’t rocket science, but I admit it takes some leg work.  Running an online business might seem pretty intimidating if you’re unsure of your digital marketing strategy– or how you plan to get known online.  It’s one thing to own a website, another thing to keep it updated, and an entirely different program to use your blog as a platform to display your expertise.

Mompreneurs: How to set yourself up as an expert online.

So, what’s stopping you from  setting up yourself as an expert? 

Is it fear of the unknown?  Lack of information on how to go about doing it exactly? Fear that maybe you’re not actually an expert?

Let me calm your fears a bit- you don’t have to do much to be an expert. You just need to know yourself.  Know your business. Know what you bring to the table.  And most of all, be confident in your field and in your expertise.

If you’ve done any of the initial groundwork and the laid the foundation for your business it won’t be so difficult to know what your expertise is.  This groundwork includes discovering your passions, setting up your online presence, developing your pricing model, discovering your customer avatar, and maintaining relationships with your tribe. You can find out more in my book.

The first step is to acknowledge that you are, indeed, an expert. Then you’ll be ready for the following steps.

1. Crank out awesome content!

Developing an online presence that matters means cranking out awesome content, and on a regular basis. I shared about batch scheduling a few months ago, and it’s one way I manage to keep content rolling at my three blogs.

You’ll need to do a bit of research and find out what your audience likes. You want to give them the kind of content they’re looking for, so keep their questions answered and keep them happy and looking for more from you.

There are more ways than one to deliver content (as you’ll see in my following points), but blogging is definitely a great way to start building your expertise online.

There are a few steps to creating a great blog post and it’s necessary to make sure you follow a decent format so that your audience knows what to expect when they read your blog. After a while, once you start getting pretty comfortable with blogging, you might even feel confident enough to reach out to sponsors for support and partnerships which can definitely further your brand a do a lot for your business!

2. Give your audience good visuals.

I can’t stress enough how important it is to maintain consistency with branding and to create visuals that flow well with your brand. I haven’t always done this and I’m guilty of brand conflict. What do I mean by this?

Well, typically it’s a good idea to have your social media profiles all match with your business brand being the same throughout. I haven’t always stayed on top of this in my own social media profiles and just so you know, it is confusing to viewers who come to my Twitter page and see an entirely different logo than the one they see on Facebook.  So, I’ve gone through a cleaning spree this year to ensure that I get a lot of this brand mix-matching cleaned up.

Another important thing about visuals to note is that when you are blogging you have an important opportunity to capture an audience of image lovers- right there on Pinterest! So, including a Pinterest-friendly image with each post you write is going to be of paramount importance if you plan to incorporate Pinterest into your digital media strategy.  By Pinterest-friendly, I just mean images that are the best size for Pinterest so that they are more likely to be re-pinned and give you that extra boost of traffic to your blog.

I can affirm that Pinterest works for traffic-building and good visuals make the difference.

Your images definitely connect your audience to your brand and help them to connect to you as an expert in your field.

3. Consider public speaking, podcasting, or both!

Public speaking in front of a live audience isn’t my thing, but it might be yours- in which case, you should start booking some speaking engagements! This is probably one of the best ways to establish your expertise.  You’ll have an audience at your fingertips who want to hear from you and they are eager to hear your words.  This makes you an expert.

Since I don’t currently do live speaking, I decided that my best ways to connect with an audience on a more personal level was through podcasting and vlogging.  These two forms of public speaking behind a camera and a microphone have been my way of connecting to moms and entrepreneurs for the past 10 years and it has worked for me. My kids were young and I couldn’t get out and travel so I made the decision to build my business from my laptop.

I LOVE podcasting and vlogging because it’s a significant way to connect to my audience, hear from them, and establish relationships with them (some of whom I enjoy phone chats with or get to see in real life).

4. Take advantage of social media.

I get it- social media takes time. But if you can, carve out a little time to batch schedule your social media posts, using nifty tools like Post Planner or Meet Edgar.

With Post Planner I’m able to plan out weeks in advance of Facebook posts and tweets. I use Tailwind for Pinterest sharing also and that has been major for me in driving traffic to my site from Pinterest.

Other social media platforms that have been proven beneficial to me are YouTube (mainly for my homeschool platform) and I use Google Plus for SEO benefits only.

The key is to find the social media platforms that work for you and work them.  I don’t especially like Twitter much, so I don’t use Twitter often. I only use what I love and what works for me.

Using social media will help to draw your tribe and help you establish your expertise across many platforms.

5. Leverage the power of search engine optimization.

Last, but not least, is the power of SEO. You don’t have to do it every time you write a blog post (although it’s optimal) but if you have strong search engine optimization habits you’ll land your blog in a better position of getting noticed in Google.

Remember your titles and header tags and to include pertinent keywords in each. Add your keywords in your blog post description and in your images as well. If you need a little help figuring this out, simply installing the Yoast SEO plugin can help you navigate through these steps.

You have an awesome piece of content- so why not ensure Google finds your blog post one of the relevant ones on the topic and rank your site high for it? Just doing a little extra prep work in advance and learning how to use your keywords effectively throughout your blog posts can be extra helpful and go a long way in helping you establish your expertise online.

That’s it guys! I loved sharing this podcast (and blog post) with you and hope that this episode helps you to see yourself as an expert in your field.

Leave comments below if you’d like to add to this conversation! I always like hearing from my listeners 🙂

 

MIH 040:How to Develop Your Winning Digital Media Strategy

MIH 040:How to Develop Your Winning Digital Media Strategy

Listen to “040:How to Develop Your Winning Digital Media Strategy” on Spreaker.

Why is a digital media strategy important?

Recently I’ve been designing websites and working with women entrepreneurs to better their web presence. I’ve been helping mompreneurs with creating their own digital media strategy. And you want to know something?  I LOVE IT!!

digital media strategy

Helping female entrepreneurs develop a winning website is a passion of mine.  But I can’t just stop there.  I have to literally keep pressing for more- and helping women to shoot for higher.  It’s not just about having a website, but using it as the tool that it is for helping you increase your income.

That’s why I talk about having your digital media strategy at hand before you even begin to develop your blog.  I talk about this in my book- in full detail.  You’ve simply got to have a digital media strategy in place so that your website has the potential for success.

Set up your blog for success up front.  I know you’re probably thinking: “How on earth am I supposed to do this?”  Great- let me answer that for you!

Start with the end in mind.

What’s your vision? Your purpose?  Who are you trying to reach?  What is your main goal for your blog?

When you start with the end result in mind, you’ll have a better shot at creating the website you really want.  If there’s anything I try to stress when developing and designing blogs for creatives, it’s to know what you want your end result to be.

Do you want people to buy from you?  What do you want them to purchase?  Do you want them to listen to you?  Will you have a podcast?  Do you want them to watch you?  Will you have videos?  Do you want to provide a service?  What will you provide?   How will you provide your products?  Will you need a shopping cart?

There is so much to think about, and you really should sit down and map it out.  Never believe anyone who would have you think that the perfect site is one that looks beautiful.  Yes, you want to have a beautiful blog you can be proud of, but you absolutely need to think about functionality.  At the end of the day, beautiful blog and all, did your blog accomplish its goal?

Start with the end in mind and work your way backward so that your planning is much more effective.

(I love helping with these kinds of planning sessions, so reach out to me if you need to.)

Set up a strong web presence.

Once you’ve begun with the end in mind, get your blog designed, and have your designer set it up with keywords that will give your blog the cornerstone it needs to compete for your future customers.  After all, we want your customers to be able to find you in Google.

Pay close attention to SEO for your blog and for many of your posts.  This can be the difference between getting noticed on Google or staying in the background behind other similar blogs.

Create loads of content.

Content, content, content is king.  I know you’ve heard this catch phrase in online marketing before, but it really is true.

You’ve got to keep pumping out helpful content and stay in the forefront of your customers’ minds. Make sure you are offering helps and freebies along the way, as well as rewarding your clients with discounts and special bonuses.

Besides blogging, think on terms of creating worksheets, ebooks, webinars, podcasts, videos…the sky is the limit. There are a variety of platforms to do this from: Periscope, Google+, YouTube, Vimeo, Instagram, Facebook Live.

There are just so many options out there for creating good, juicy content your readers want.  No excuses!

Solve their problems!

If you want to be considered at the top of your field, you’ve got to be willing to solve problems.  Being a problem solver is what makes money, and the more problems you solve for others the more desirable your services and products will be.

Engage and network.

The best way to make your digital media strategy a success is to engage and network.  The only way you can solve your customers’ problems is to get out there and start networking!

Get involved on Facebook groups.  Engage on social media like YouTube.  Keep an ear and eye out for the needs of your niche market and pop in to see how that you can be of value to them by answering questions on forums and groups.

I’ve met some really wonderful people through networking this way. Awesomeness!!

Balance it all out.

The hardest part and the most important part of this entire process is balance.  You’ll notice I talk about balance a lot on this blog- and it’s because every single mompreneur has to learn to balance business life and the intricacies of it plus family life.

When it comes to your digital media strategy, you’ve got to be able to balance working for yourself, working for and with your clients, developing new products, keeping up with current services you offer, and using your blog as the platform to set all this into motion.

Seems like a lot?  Well...because it is!! But no worries…we’re here to support one another (well I’m here to support you!) And that’s what this blog is all about.  It’s a support system to help you figure out how to pull it all together.

I guarantee you – this is the digital media strategy you need that will help you be effective in your online business.  If you set up your website for success by planning in the beginning (starting with the end in mind), pay close attention to setting up an attractive blog around strong SEO, create loads of juicy content, solve your clients’ problems, engage like crazy, and then balance this out so you don’t make yourself and your family crazy- you have a winning digital media strategy!

And because I’m speaking to women entrepreneurs here, my take on what a successful digital media strategy is will always be spoken with the mompreneur in mind.

I know you’re busy.  I know you have kids and you’re probably exhausted from all your daily activities. I’m there and I completely understand.  And I wouldn’t encourage you to do something that I am unable to do.  You can do this!

If you need a digital media strategy consultation, reach out to me and let’s talk!

 

 

MIH 039:What Makes a Successful YouTube Channel

MIH 039:What Makes a Successful YouTube Channel

Listen to “039:What Makes a Successful YouTube Channel” on Spreaker.This week’s user question is: what makes a successful YouTube channel?

I love YouTube and when you don’t find me blogging about blogging, you’ll either find me podcasting or creating a video for YouTube. Currently I have two channels (one which is rather tiny, but another which has more leverage.)
 YouTube for business is a phenomenal thing that helps to bring more eyes to my business mission and ultimately lands me more deals with clients.
I have found that in addition to podcasting, YouTube has been one of my most productive ways of getting the word out about my business offerings.  Because I recently had a viewer questions about what makes a successful YouTube channel, I thought I’d offer an answer- and this time via podcast!  I’ll probably create a video to go along with this as well.
 successful youtube channel

So what makes a successful YouTube channel?

Success is not necessarily dependent on the number of people who view your channel, because at first you will have very few views.  Success is contingent upon the necessary steps you take in order to make your channel useful, and also how well you communicate with your viewers.

So, let’s dig into some specifics on what exactly makes a successful YouTube channel.

Narrow down your vision so it is specific and strategic.

You’ll want to ask yourself why you created the channel and keep that vision in front of you at all times.  This will make your channel even more laser-focused. Make the vision plain, write it down, refer to it every time you make a video. Your passion shows through your videos and that is always a plus.
Narrowing down your vision helps you to see what’s important.  It helps you to realize potential topics for your audience, and topics that are random.  You want to put the majority of your energy on creating content that is useful for your viewers based on your own vision for your channel.  If you want to have a successful YouTube channel, you have to be laser-focused.

Pair your vlog with a blog for additional impact.

A lot of people miss this or skip this step because it is more work.  But in my experience it has been worth it.
People who don’t find my vlog on YouTube find my blog first. It’s just giving your readers and viewers more than one way to connect with you. On my blog, I like to add posts that include one or two of my videos.  I find that my readers love rich media, and adding videos to my blog is a great way to add a bonus boost to what I’ve written.  Everyone has different learning styles- some love listening to audio, some love watching video, while others prefer reading or skimming through a blog post.
I’ve found that my best contacts on YouTube tend to be those who also follow my blog.  This seems to make for more of a specialized, small-niche vlogging community where I’m meeting the needs (hopefully) of my viewers who love my content in different ways.

Find ways to monetize both your blog and your vlog.

At the end of the day, those with a successful YouTube channel tend to find ways to monetize it– whether through Google ads, digital products, or services. Most successful YouTubers enjoy the fruit of their labors through Google ads, which is super easy to set up.  Once ads start rolling on your videos, you get paid a percentage based on views and impressions.
Unfortunately, back in 2010, I had my Adsense account banned through no fault of my own, and have been unable to use it either for my blogs or my YouTube account.  I’ve since moved to Bing ads for my blogs, but haven’t found a comparable solution for my videos- so they currently run ad-free.  I use other methods for monetizing my YouTube account by offering my products and services regularly.

Post regularly.

Viewers love it when they see additional videos on a regular basis.  I run two channels, and I’m not always successful at getting both updated frequently being a busy mom and all, but I try not to let too many weeks slide between posts.

On my homeschool channel I usually post about once a week and lately it’s been once per month on my mompreneurs channel.  I’m planning to change that to once a week as well.

Create catchy thumbnails.

One thing that gets viewers’ attention is catchy thumbnails.  When scrolling through a list of videos on YouTube, a viewer is more likely to click on a video that has an attractive and catchy thumbnail, so you’ll want to make sure to start creating these.  I currently use PicMonkey and create an image with the dimensions of 1280×720.

Interact consistently.

When you constantly and consistently comment on others’ channels and reply to your own channel comments, you’ll find it more likely to have a successful YouTube channel. It’s all about the conversation!
Viewers love it when you respond and you’ll have much less spam and trolls on your channel when you take time to consistently interact with your tribe.

Do these tips help?  Do you feel motivated to begin a YouTube channel or to create a plan of action that will help you maintain it?

If you need support with vlogging- or just an extra ear to listen to you- I’m available for coaching.
Find Your Mompreneur Web Success Strategies!

Find Your Mompreneur Web Success Strategies!

For this post, I had to dig way back: way back to 2014 when I was first re-building my tech consulting business. I found that I had some true nuggets to offer mompreneurs about using web success strategies to jumpstart your online business.

web success strategies

I realize there is wisdom in the old nuggets, so I’m revisiting an older video which is all about coining some different techniques for pulling together a successful web based business.

I believe your blog should start with your brilliant business idea and passion.  Next, I think you should consider some different online strategies and venues for promotion of your business.

The cool thing is that all of this can be done online- and that’s saying a lot for busy moms with a heart for her family and for business.

Web success strategies I discussed in the video 

  • Creating digital products (and adding them to a service-based business.)

As of the summer of 2016, I finally completed my first major digital product- my book, Mompreneurs in Heels:A Guide to Passionate, Purposeful Blogging– and I’ve found this to be an excellent basis from which to serve my clients.

It wasn’t an easy process, but looking back I’m really glad I took those many months to write and edit, and the six weeks to refine the book and publish it.  I just had to make up my mind to get moving and to do it.

  • Creating a service (adding it onto a predominantly product-based business).

I tried to shy away from service-based business for a few years.  Between 2014-2016 I have announced on several occasions (like on my podcast and newsletters) that I was going to focus mainly on offering digital products, and not so much services.  (My services are website design and maintenance, podcasting consulting, and WordPress coaching). I offer a few more tech-related services, but that’s the gist of it.

Although I’ve been on the fence about offering services, I recently have finally come to terms with the fact that my services really are needed.

Between December and February of 2017 website design and podcast consulting clients have been flowing into my life more quickly than I can count- all a God-blessing I know- and definitely unplanned! How can I say “no” when the need is clearly there?

So…I’m back to both a product and service-based business- and I’m perfectly okay with that for now.

As a woman in business, you have to decide what’s right for you during this season of your life. Will you offer products only?  Services only?  Both? Figure out what works for you and set out in that direction.

  • Authoring and speaking.

Speaking is something I haven’t done yet (besides podcasting), but it’s definitely in the works.

I appreciate mompreneurs like Tammie Polk and Theresa Ceniccola, and many other speaker moms who are making it happen!

(Just a side note: it’s always a good idea to have business women in your life you aspire to or who influence to be a better you.)

  • Creating and promoting ebooks and other digital products (reports, worksheets and workbooks, audios, videos)

This is where I have found my real drive- in creating workbooks, podcasts, ebooks, and such. It’s easy for me to sit behind the laptop and create something from my heart, and sell it; at least, easier than offering a platter of services.

But I’m finally finding my niche in both worlds: services and products.  Products are neat because you make it, sell it, and walk away while watching it work its magic! Products make money for you when you’re eating, sleeping, and hanging out with your kids.

So, here’s the video I promised you from 2014…take a look and tell me what you think.


What are some success strategies you use to build and promote your online business?

Are your blog posts filled with shareable content?

Are your blog posts filled with shareable content?

Okay, so if you’ve been at this blogging game for a while I’m sure you’ve picked up the newest and latest rules over the course of time about how to make shareable content on your blog.

shareable contentBut what if you’re not sure you have content that is shareable?  What does this all mean anyway?

That’s why I’m here to help 🙂

You have shareable content when readers feel attracted to your post title.

Is your blog post title attractive in some way?  Fun and engaging?  Edgy or controversial?  Informative?  How do you peek your readers’ attention with your posts?

You could ask a provocative question or give a how-to hook, but whatever you do, make sure your title draws them in.

Does your content add value to your title?

If you’ve got the catchy title, just make sure your content follows suit and backs it up with good information.  There’s nothing like a reader grabbing that catchy hook, taking the bait to visit your site- then finding out that your post flopped in comparison to the title that grabbed their attention.

If you say you’re going to give the latest on Paris Hilton, then when they land on your page, you better have some news to share!

In all honesty, readers come for content and they just want to know that they’re getting what you promised out in the social media networks.  So if you broadcast it, be sure to back it up.

Do you have plenty of social media sharing options in your post?

This one’s a biggie- although I might say a no-brainer in today’s social media world.  If you don’t have social media sharing options on each and every blog post, you’re missing out on a major opportunity to allow others to share your content.

Use plugins like sociable or shareaholic– but whatever you do, find a sharing plugin, get it installed, and make it available for others to use.  You can use it too!

So how about your blog?  Do you have shareable content? If you haven’t already, which of these strategies will you put into place?

MIH 009: 5 Web Success Strategies That Work!

MIH 009: 5 Web Success Strategies That Work!

web success

Today’s podcast is about 5 web success strategies that I believe you’ll find important in building your online business plan.

Just to recap, here are the five steps to a web success strategy that prove successful:

  1. Find your niche
  2. Build your web presence
  3. Promote your blog
  4. Connect with your tribe
  5. Form partnerships

Listen to the podcast episode for more details 🙂

I hope this has been helpful. Feel free to leave me a message on my Speakpipe (on the far right where it says “Send Voicemail”)—>

(leaving your name and blog URL) and I’ll be glad to play it on my next podcast. :-)

To your web success!