Facebook and WordPress offer an integrated marketing solution
There are many things that I like about WordPress, but by far, one of my favorites is how it can be setup to take care of your work for you. This means that you can do one thing and have it tie in with other marketing venues AUTOMATICALLY!
For example, if you set things up properly, you can write a POST in your WordPress site (NOTE – This doesn’t work with WordPress PAGES, just for POSTS) and have it automatically appear on your Facebook Business Page.
The other night I was putting up a Post for a client and I didn’t need to worry about dealing with Facebook because the Facebook post was created automatically.
Another example is the ability to place a simple widget in a WordPress Sidebar and have it display your recent Facebook Posts or your most recent Twitter Tweets — all automatically.
Let me take a moment to clarify — these options work if you are using WordPress installed on your own domain. I don’t know whether they work on a free blog hosted on the WordPress.com site.
As more and more web sites are built using WordPress, there are more plugins being developed and more functionality being added. If you have a specific need, it is worth checking to see if there is a plugin yet. If there isn’t, just wait a while…
Survival Tips for your Online Business
I am very lucky! I have a number of offline coaching clients, all with offline businesses and actually, most of them have more than one business!
Because of the nature of their businesses, they all have brick and mortar locations…
I find that I learn a LOT from them, which is wonderful
Here is a tip from Client K -
When she arranged for internet access at her office, she deliberately signed up with a DIFFERENT Internet Service Provider than she has at home.
Her town was hard hit with storms last week and most of the internet service is down. At home, she can only get internet access for extremely limited periods of time, but at the office, all is going well — slower than usual but working adequately. So, with a little bit of reorganization, she is able to get her online work accomplished.
Whenever possible, try to distribute the risk… in this case, it is by having different ISPs for your internet access, or, if you work from home, knowing of a public location where you can get internet access.
In most cases with an ONLINE business, we aren’t actively working on the business all of the time, but we do need to keep in touch — whether by email or by website comments or both.
Adding social media such as Facebook and Twitter in to the mix further complicates things.
Many times, without realizing it, we rely on multiple hardware options to run our online empires
It may be that you find that you are using a combination of technology to keep in touch — bouncing between your smart phone and you computer.
Obviously, the smart phone provides redundant backup for email and social media, so you have that covered. But do keep in mind that your website may need updates or other work and your smart phone may not provide an effective way to accomplish those tasks.
Plan Your Online Redundancy
When you have the time, take a few minutes and list all of the online activities you are involved in over the course of a week. Then, think about everything else and see if there are any irregular tasks that may not appear on that list.
These might include tasks or circumstances that occur rarely.
Now, take that lists of tasks and identify your MAIN method of access — home computer or smart phone, for example.
Next, decide on a backup method of access — this could be office computer or internet access at the library. In the case of using your smart phone, is there a way to access those resources by way of your computer? If not, is there another smart phone — such as a family member or friend — that you could utilize in a pinch?
Finally, identify the information you would need to utilize those backup options… for example, if you might need to use someone else’s smart phone, how would you access YOUR email addresses?
Ask yourself if there is a practical way to provide yourself with secure information in a different geographical location, to add another layer of security. In my case, my sister lives about 650 miles away. It is unlikely that a weather disaster affecting me will also affect her, so storing information with her and/or providing her with access to my online backups makes sense. Even if I can’t get to the information, she can, under my supervision.
Let’s face it — life happens!
We can’t change how it affects us, but we can control how we react. Being prepared for the worst case minimizes the effect a disaster can have on us and our online businesses.
Editing Product Images Requires the Right Editing Software
I am currently working with a very driven client. She is, finally, working to get her offline business online. Her website is an issue that she has been circling for years, literally, and finally she has decided to buckle down.
Unfortunately, she has convinced herself that she can’t handle the technical stuff.
Now, truth be told, if I EVER had my back to the wall, she is the person I would want beside me (did I mention that she is also one of my best friends?) I KNOW she can learn all of this stuff ! Believe me, she is more than capable!
At the moment, she is struggling to learn how to edit the photos for her website and most recently we have been working on the thumbnails needed for her shopping cart products.
Product Images are Vitally Important Website Content!
As I tell my clients, product images on a web site are an extremely important element, for a number of reasons:
Product Images – Pros
For Human Visitors -
- Product Images can provide information in an efficient way. However, images are NOT an appropriate substitute for meaty, detailed, written product descriptions
- Product Images can provide appealing eye candy
For Search Engine Visitors -
- Image file names can be a powerful search engine tool
- Image alt text tags can also reinforce the appropriate product keywords and brand names when used judiciously
Product Images – Cons
For Human Visitors -
- If your pictures aren’t sized correctly, they may load slowly and your human visitors are likely to get impatient and leave your site
For Search Engine Visitors -
- Google has begun to assess websites by loading time. If your web site loads slowly, it may be penalized in the SERPs (Search Engine Results Pages)
And with the cons, we reach the crux of the biscuit… my client has not been able to successfully and consistently handle the resizing and editing needed for these ever important Product Images.
She has been insisting on using a couple the free Microsoft Image programs that seem to come loaded on new computers. They are designed for loving grandparents and not for serious business people.
We have run into permissions issues (first time I have ever had this problem… and boy, was it hard to track down!), and resizing issues. In spite of the fact that I had her download a free solution — IrfanView — she has avoided taking the time to learn it…
As a result, she (and I) have wasted a number of hours trying to fix what shouldn’t be broken in the first place…
I was a painter in a previous life and believe me, having the proper brush for the job is non-negotiable!
I have been wracking my brains trying to figure out a way to explain this to her and have finally figured out an analogy that will have meaning for her — basically, she has been trying to knit with two crochet hooks… for those of you who are woodworkers – you can’t use a straight blade screwdriver if you need a crescent wrench!
As in every endeavor, take the time to find the right tool for the job, and then take the time to learn to use it correctly. Trust me, it will save you time and tears in the long run!
Sharing the Road to Success,
Need a Website? Build it NOW!
This year (2011) has been an interesting one. For the last several years, I have had about a dozen off again, on again clients… They knew they needed to work on their sites, they wanted to work on their sites, but somehow life got in the way. ;-(
Now, I TOTALLY understand.
My niche for clients is primarily offliners who already have at least one offline business going. I have a number of clients with more than one offline business. Needless to say, they are busy people.
Suddenly at the beginning of this year, a handful of them suddenly woke up and smelled the coffee… and they went from the occasional *I need to work on my site* email to become intensely focused clients, showing up on Skype at least once a week and sometimes multiple times a week. (YIPPEE!)
They end every Skype call with a list of what THEY need to accomplish before the next Skype meeting.
They are extremely busy business people and for the most part, they are learning how to do everything themselves, so that they will have the option to do it themselves or hire and/or train someone.
They are very aware of the fact they they each know their own business better than anyone else and that they need to be making the decisions.
They are learning *hands on SEO (Search Engine Optimization)* and already they know more than many *SEO Pros* and more importantly, they are understanding HOW to apply it for their businesses.
We keep things flexible, so even if they have given themselves *Homework* to finish by the current Skype meeting, in the grand scheme of things that task may or may not be the task that is the priority come appointment day.
I am REALLY enjoying the time I spend with such motivated and creative people, and their ability to squeeze one more *To Do List item* into already busy days.
If you don’t have a website, what do you need to know?
So after waxing lyrical here, what is the take away?
- They know that sometimes you need to *Just Do It*
- If you want results, you need to put in the work
- And, more importantly, they realize that delaying online is an easy trap to fall into
I emphasize *Finished is better than perfect*
If necessary, throw the page or product up and get it moving and come back to tweak it later. (The key here, of course, is to make sure that LATER actually happens! LOL)
You can always fix your new site or post or page… but you can’t fix a site or post or page THAT DOESN’T EXIST!
Sharing the Road to Success!