The Changing Shape Of Business

  • September 9 , 2013

You might have noticed that over the last year or two there has been an economic crisis going on around the world.changing shape of business feature image Some places are hit worse than others, while Europe and America have been surfing the waves of ‘will they’ or ‘won’t they collapse’ places like Australia were not hit as hard.

The effect of countries like Ireland, Greece, Portugal and Spain crashing and requiring to be bailed out does mean that countries like Australia will and have been affected even though their economy wasn’t mixed up with the awful greed and mismanagement of the banking systems here in the northern hemisphere.

Picture courtesy of NyTimes.com

But let’s put those economic woes aside for a minute and think about what else is going on. You see the world we know is a lot different to the one we knew 20 years ago. In fact it is a lot different to what it was like only 10 years ago.

Back To The Future

I am 39 so I am going to use my experiences as examples of the changes. You see I feel relatively young, well mentally, my knees do now have a bit of a creak but I put that down to years working in the building trade. I still feel like I am in my late teens – early twenties and that really doesn’t feel that long ago yet, unfortunately it was 20 years ago.

When I went to the big Helter Skelter raves at Milton Keynes the DJs would mix vinyl records that were often carried into the event by the DJs friends in big boxes. These days music is mixed on laptops and memory sticks. Some might still use CDs but then the format of the music is probably MP3.

Just that one example will explain why big stores like Woolworths and HMV have been on the decline; you see the way we buy things has changed massively. Very few people buy vinyl these days and why would you? When you can buy music by any artist from anywhere in the world instantly as an MP3 from shops online like iTunes and download them straight to your mobile phone or MP3 player?

In fact, MP3 players will soon be a thing of the past themselves, with smart phones and tablets becoming more powerful, well they are actually hand held computers with a huge amount of memory that can not only do tasks like ‘call people’ …

·         They are cameras that can hold thousands of images which can be modified and shared with the world in seconds.

·         They can access the internet and search thousands of websites worldwide and connect to all of your favourite social media networks like Twitter and Facebook.

·         You can check your bank account, send and receive money and pay for items with them.

·         They can hold and play more songs than what you will find in the average music fans CD library.

·         They can now hold and play full high definition movies thanks to the MP4 format

And get this…

·         They can live stream TV, films and webinars from the internet!

·         Oh and did I mention that you can set your TV to record a show or turn the lights of at home from anywhere in the world?

So believe me when I say that MP3 players will be a thing of the past even though they are relatively new gadgets.

So you can see, technology is changing and it is changing fast. Stores that were selling records, CDs and DVDs have been closing down in droves and that doesn’t have anything to do with the economic crisis. It might not have helped but it was a dying market anyway, the fact people couldn’t afford to buy music or film like they used to is irrelevant, if they could then the majority would most certainly buy them in MP3 and MP4 formats.

It’s Not Just Music & Movies

Things like clothing and food is now bought online in increasing amounts by more and more people. I myself posted T-shirts all around the world when I used to have a T-shirt printing business on eBay. My father used to run a local corner shop selling groceries and believe it or not renting out videos to the local community. He relied on the people living in the surrounding area and passers-by to earn his income.

He was amazed when 20 years later I was sending parcels out to places as far away as Moscow, Singapore, Australia and The USA etc, all from my own home. Only bigger companies with money were able to import and export stuff but now virtually everyone has access to this thanks to sites like eBay & Amazon and companies like UPS & DHL who have improved global postal delivery.

The End Of The World Is Nigh

The world is changing and we must change with it, years ago when industries were being closed down like Coal Mining. People really thought that was it for the country. Thousands were out of work and people feared the future employment for the children.

It might have been only 30 years since we had the Miners strikes and closures of the coal fields in the UK but the world our children live in today is a million miles away from those days.

In fact I am one of the children from that era and I have worked since I left school and have had a lot of different opportunities that they thought were not available. Much of the work I have done was not even thought possible at that time. Imagine telling someone 30 years ago that I get paid to write articles for people overseas that I have never met or spoken to and that my money is in the bank that very same day.

They wouldn’t believe it was possible, but it is and so are many different new and exciting opportunities. Today people are creating software and apps to go on phones, tablets and now even smart TVs. We have people who can now set up services like TV on Demand and the greatest invention for any television addict pausing live TV and recording it without a video tape or disk.

All of this new software and technology needs to be designed, made, packaged and delivered so even for those people who cannot use the internet as a way to work such as being a freelance writer or social media manager the internet and modern advancements are still creating jobs for them.

The future isn’t bleak, it is what you make it and we are at an exciting time in our history to make more money than we ever thought possible with all of the advancements in technology and the great connections and networks we can now make thanks to them.

Not only can you get paid to write content for websites that are owned by people you have never met but you can hire people overseas to write a lot of it and then sell it on for profit after you have checked it.

There are so many ways to make money these days with the internet and modern technology. Isn’t it time you started to utilise it and take your share?

Real People + Real Trust =Success

  • September 6 , 2013

In the offline world, the quality of the customer service can make or break a business especially in its early years. A big company with millions of customers can ride out the storm of negative feedback on their customer care services but that doesn’t mean they do not care or try and improve the care they give to their customers.Invisiable man

They will try their best to make it as easy as possible for people to contact them and to rectify any issues there are to the service they provide as smooth as humanly possible. They know that you cannot please everyone all of the time and that occasionally there will be gripes from people that they simply cannot control yet they will do their hardest.

For many of the bigger companies, they probably wouldn’t have grown to where they are now without first setting a quality customer service in place. It only takes a few bad reviews to start people talking and that can then lead to a growing negative social opinion of your company.

It is very much like creating a bad brand, you probably want to be known by as many people as possible like a brand name similar to Nike or Coke but instead you could become known as the ‘you don’t want to buy from them’ company and that is it, game over. With today’s social media networks and online forums it doesn’t take long for rumours or gripes to spread like wild fire!

With many of us being small online businesses  with many probably being nothing more than a single person based blogging or social media marketing business, it can be very dangerous if we get a bad name or reputation from the beginning.

One of the best ways to do this is to simply be you. If you have a website set up a company blog to run alongside it where you introduce people to the real you. Create a Facebook page and Twitter account and post some semi private information such as photos of you enjoying a night out at the big game or stating that you are having a night in with your other half watching a great film with pizza. Do a mixture of work based posts and home life posts.

Make your readers and clients know that you are a real person; make them see that you are not just a faceless corporation trying to beat targets and suck profits from every angle and that you are instead trying to build a business that offers an excellent service. This can build a lot of respect and trust from people as they can see you as being one of them and make a huge difference to the type of questions and issues you might get from customers as they are not seeing you as just some standard automaton in a paid call centre somewhere with a script.

Real robots

If you do have some staff that deal with your complaints try and make it well known that they are going to deliver a quality service and that if they fail you or your company should be informed so that you can also remedy the issues. Why not start a blog for your staff so again people can see that they are real people just like your clients.

When people send you emails or Facebook and Twitter questions try and answer as many as you can in the best way possible. Try not to start a public battle or argument if the person is making a complaint or gripe that is deemed unfair or inaccurate.

By all means put them straight and be polite, if they persist invite them to discuss the matter further via a private chat but stay friendly, if they do not want to chat in private or stay friendly themselves then it will soon reflect on them, your actions will reflect on you so always be mindful of that when you are dealing with customer complaints in a public arena.

People like real people, they trust them more than a faceless corporation and it can be very easy to slip into becoming a faceless business online. Many websites are created to sell services and products but the creators can hide behind them, customers sometimes do not know who they are buying from or dealing with. That can lead to distrust and lose potential sales.

You need to build up trust as people generally spend money with people or organisations they trust.

It makes sense really, would you buy a bag of crisps from Bob and Margret who run the local shop that has been trading for 20 years or would you bypass them and buy a slightly cheaper bag from the guy standing on the street corner who has suddenly appeared, wearing a dark hooded top hiding his face and appears to be looking over his shoulder every few seconds as if to be looking for the local constabulary?

Seriously, who would you choose? You might think that I have gone overboard with the two extreme examples but we are talking about trust here. Who would you trust and why? It makes me wonder why some people start businesses, when they cannot even greet you, a new customer, with a smile. It isn’t hard to say something like ‘hello, how are you today?’ and just be genuinely polite.

Everyone knows that rudeness just puts people off, so why start a business whose very survival is dependent upon having many happy customers only to be rude and not use the most basic and understood concept in human interaction. Being polite and making your customers feel that you are pleased they are there will gain loyalty and trust which in turn leads to sales.

I do mean genuine politeness and not that awful American craze that was popular a few years ago. When entering a store you were greeted by a young spotty part time robot with a false smile and a cheesy line which they had to use for everyone. They also said upon leaving ‘Come back soon, missing you already’ and all that kind of pap. They worked from a script; it never came across as genuine and was very sickly. Maybe that is the English in me but I do dislike false business practices.

Trust can be destroyed when you do things without sincerity; estate agents and car salesman have reputations that are hard to shake off thanks to years of over the top smarmy sales patter. A new person entering the industry has already got a label as ‘dodgy’ or ‘untrustworthy’ before they have even attempted to sell their first car or property.

Real trust is grown from being real and genuine. So if you have just started or intend to start an online business then I suggest you spend some time focusing on letting your potential customers know who you are and build up genuine trust by interacting with them as well as creating your products and services.

 

 

Sharing On Facebook - Best Practices | Bizzebee

Sharing On Facebook – Best Practices

  • September 4 , 2013

During the course of me running my own Facebook business page, I’ve seen a lot of changes from Facebook HQ with regard to its algorithm (known as Edgerank) that calculates who see’s what when you are posting from your business page.

Some “experts” believe that Edgerank is pretty much null and void now with the introduction of promoted posts / boost post on Facebook, and to a degree I make them right.

The essence of this post is to highlight the best ways in which you should post updates from your Facebook page in order to reach the most amounts of people organically (without parting with your hard earned pennies)

Since the introduction of promoted posts / boost post irrespective of how many likes your Facebook page has, you will only ever reach around 12% of your audience for free, and that is being generous!

Facebook “weight” posts and they de-value many posts for a number of different factors, and if you don’t understand this, you could be potentially reaching far less people than the 12%.

It’s NO LONGER good practice to “share” updates from page to page!  Not so long ago, as a page owner working through the newsfeed and connecting with other pages you liked, it was good Facebook ethic to “share” a post with your likes from somewhere else inside Facebook.

** Newsflash ** 

Facebook have completely DE VALUED this function, and it receives the lowest organic reach out of ALL the updates you can make as your business page.  I’ve personally found this one a bit of a blow to be honest, and I know so many of you reading this will too.

Facebook encouraged sharing, infact it was the biggest trigger and the most heavily weighted in the Edgerank algorithm – but on a page-to-page level it is no longer the thing to do!

If you don’t believe me, then you need to go and take a look at one of the posts you have shared from another page to your own – I think you will be quite shocked at its organic reach.

I am not so sure of the whys and where’s of Facebook making this decision or quite where it leaves their whole “sharing” mantra, but I am telling you now you are wasting your efforts in making those kinds of updates page to page.

I now make a lot of effort to share information from a page to my personal profile because that does work. A post is still seen to be popular if it has a lot of shares – and yeah of course that makes sense, but to those people who are sharing the posts, they just won’t be reaching the level of people they think they are.

Sharing On Facebook – Best Practices 

If you REALLY want to get the most visibility on your 12% organic reach (and actually reach a little further) then you need to be sharing TEXT only updates.

I know what you are thinking here “but I have a link to my website I want to share” – that’s FINE, there is always a loophole, and I’m about to let you into a little secret!

If you make a post that is only text, and you include a URL, if you “Remove Preview” from the URL Facebook treats it like a text only update – the link is still FULLY clickable and you will reach even more people organically (within the approximate 12% I mean)

This is an image direct from my own Facebook insights, my latest post contained a URL, which I removed the preview from, and Facebook thinks that the post is only text, thus pushing it out further organically than if it contained the preview which showed it was a link to somewhere outside of Facebook.

Sharing On Facebook - Best Practices | Bizzebee

The next image shows a post that Facebook clearly sees as a link – and you can see the reach is FAR lower

Sharing On Facebook - Best Practices | Bizzebee

In order to help my own cause (and believe me I don’t like paying for Facebook Ads) I make sure I share ALL my website links via my Facebook page to my personal profile – it helps with the reach, if you got 5 people / friends to share your page post on their own timeline you would see your reach jump up to as many as 1000 FOR FREE.

Combine that tactic with some well placed hashtags inside your text only post and you will also find that more people are in with a chance of discovering your post, and more importantly YOUR BUSINESS!

Photos used to be the single most shared and seen thing inside of Facebook, but again, unless you have a VERY compelling image that actually has a purpose, rather than just for the sake of it, and you are teaming it up with quality text and the right keywords for the hashtag search, then it really is a pointless exercise.

Facebook are making it tough, with no direct word over the changes to do with Edgerank weight, a lot of people out there (like myself) who are constantly analysing their insights and running different kinds of tests, are making these discoveries to try and help the people like YOU.

If you don’t have the budget to pay for those likes to see your posts, then don’t – you can speak to any member of the Bizzebee team who would be happy to help you find some more innovative ways to be “seen”

Engagement is WAY more important than total likes NOW – there is no point in having 1500 Facebook likes and only 2 people talking about your page. Those 1498 likes might as well not even exist, and that is why we are here to try and help you make sense of how this works, and you learn from the benefit of our experience.

Clair  🙂

Get 100% Approved Adsense Account : 2013 Working Tricks

  • September 2 , 2013

All new bloggers or semi seasoned bloggers know that Google Adsense is one of the best programmes to earn money through advertising on your blog or website. But recently, it has become quite  hard to get a 100% approved Adsense account because of the numerous new Google Adsense policies. Google like to update their policies regularly and this can cause many issues to bloggers.

Many bloggers or website owners would like an Adsense account but most of them are not successful in getting one. There are many people online who sell their Adsense account to the non successful website owners. We recommend that you do not to buy a Google Adsense account from any resellers online because it is against Google’s Adsense Terms of Services. If you have gained an Adsense account by buying it, then it could be banned any time without warning.

If you want a Google Adsense account and fear you may not get one then, don’t get upset! There is no need to worry at all. I am going to share with you the best way to get an approved  Adsense account with a simple method which is 100% legal and working in 2013 -the method has been tested by myself and many others.

approved-adsense-account

Steps to Get Approved Adsense Account :

I believe you already know that YouTube is the most popular video sharing website on which users can share, upload, download and view videos by different users or channels. You can easily get an approved Adsense account with YouTube simply by sharing your own videos online.

This is by far the best method to get an approved Adsense account within 24-48hrs maximum (Of course you have to do some work).

1. First step, Let’s go to www.youtube.com and create a Youtube account (I recommend to create the account with your Gmail ID). If you do not have a Gmail account then we recommend you get one first.

2. Upload some videos to your account (Say at least 3), You can use  a video converter for cutting different parts of a movie up or use Windows Movie Maker for creating some basic videos. (It is the best idea to upload trending videos for getting more views).

3. Increase your video views by sharing on other social networks like Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest , and  Google+ etc.

4. Now when your YouTube account reaches 300+ views in total from all  the videos combined you will get an email invitation sent to your Gmail inbox or a message in your YouTube inbox to  monetize your videos. ( If you haven’t got the invitation don’t worry. You can simply apply for an Adsense account in your YouTube Settings.)

5. Now after applying to Adsense for an account you will get an email within the next 24hrs saying that, your account is now enabled for monetization.

6. Hurray! You now have a fully working Adsense account. Make sure to use it properly and stay within the TOS and you will be fine. ‘Do No Evil’ as Google say, Google will hunt you down and kick you out of the service if you do illegal activities.

I hope you have enjoyed this simple trick that I have shared with you so you too  can get a Google Adsense account. Please share with us any other easier methods that you know by commenting below.

Enjoy the new account that you have created by reading our  “Get 100% Approved Adsense Account” article. 🙂

How Often Should You Post On Your Blog?

  • August 30 , 2013

How-Often-Should-You-Post-On-Your-Blog

One question that comes up time and time again when talking to new bloggers is “How often should you post on your blog?”  It’s a valid question, I mean how many times should you post?  I’m sure everyone will have their own opinion, but I thought I would share my views and explain why I view them like this.

Every Blog Needs Regular Content

In order for your website to even stand a chance of being a success, you will need to produce and publish regular content.

Search engines absolutely love sites that are regularly updated as they will view it as being active.  This is VITAL as if your site isn’t seen to be active; you are much less likely to be sent traffic from them.  Active sites generally get much higher rankings in the SERPs (Search Engine Result Pages), which leads to more traffic.  It’s not quite as simple as that, as search engines also take a lot of other factors into consideration about a site, but regular content does help a lot.

Your site visitors will also appreciate regular content on your site, as it encourages them to keep coming back for more.  At the end of the day that is what you are after – more traffic to your site.  Think about it, if you found a site that you liked and then came back in a couple of weeks to find that nothing had changed, would you keep revisiting the site?  Probably not!

So updating your site regularly with new content will help to encourage new (and returning) traffic.  But when we say “regularly update your site”, how regularly do we mean?

How Often Can YOU Post On Your Blog?

Before I give my views – how often can YOU post on your site?  I only ask this as it’s important to think about how much time you can give to your site.  You may have; other work commitments, other sites that need your attention, a family, etc.  After all, you are the one that is going to need to put in the work into updating and publishing new content your site, so only you can judge how often you can post.

If you are just starting out in the world of blogging, it can often be good to start by publishing only a few (maybe 1 a week) and then work your way up.  This way, you can get a feel for what you are doing and learn about all the other aspects that go with it along the way.

Quality not Quantity

Ideally, you want to post as often as possible.  HOWEVER, when I say that, I mean you want to publish as many “high quality posts” as possible.  Posting 4,5, even 10 posts a day is just ridiculous as you can’t hope to publish anything of “quality”.

If you want to build a successful site, you will need to publish quality content that people actually want to read and share with their friends.  Anything less and you won’t last very long online!

So… How Often Should I Post?

If it’s just you running your site, then I would aim to publish 1-2 posts a week.  When I first started ‘Online Income Teacher’, I published 2 a week (every Tuesday and Thursday).  This was great as it allowed me to work on the other aspects of my site (monetizing, email list, branding, social media, guest blogging, etc.) for the rest of the week.

I’ve since switched to 3 times a week (Monday, Wednesday and Friday) as I am a much faster writer now and can manage my time much better.

Here on Bizzebee, we also publish 3 times a week.  Whilst we could publish every day (and did for a bit to get the site up and running), we all have individual work that keeps us busy, as well as creating content for ‘The Hive‘ – the Bizzebee membership area.

It’s important that you pick a posting schedule that you are happy with.  If you feel that you can produce a quality post every day, then go for it!  But like I say, you may be better off starting at a slower pace and working your way up.

Post On Your Blog Like Clockwork

Whatever your schedule is, make sure that you stick with it.  If you decide to publish twice a week, publish 2 posts a week – every week!  There is nothing more frustrating for a reader than their favourite blogger running out of steam.  You would be quite disappointed if you found a blogger that you liked, only to find that they went from publishing every day to now only 1 a month (if that).

Similarly, if you write 5 posts one week, then 1 post the next, then disappear for a month, etc. people aren’t going to stay very loyal.  Readers like to know where they stand.  They will only keep visiting your site if they can expect to find something new.  We are all creatures of habit, if we know that you publish once a week, we will come to expect that.

Summary

There is no magic number of how often you should post on a site.  Publish as often as you can, but make sure that what you are publishing is of the highest quality.  Consistently publishing quality content (however often) will always attract traffic.

How often do you post on your blog?  Have you changed how often you post?  If so, why?  Please let us know in the comment section below!

The Internet, The New Frontier Of Modern Business

  • August 28 , 2013

The Internet, The New Frontier Of Modern Business

If you were not quite aware, the world has been witnessing a global recession since 2008, just when we think it is improving we hear of the sudden collapse of countries like Greece and Spain. There are a lot of factors that caused the global recession and much of it is down to bad banking practices based on greed but it has to be said, not every business that has closed down recently is down to the economic crisis.

hmv

Picture courtesy of TheTimes.co.uk

Over the last few years large high street chains have closed down forcing thousands of people out of work. But contrary to belief this is not down to the global crisis, it is down to the changing world and the change in the retail industry. No longer do we need to go down to the town centre to rent out a film or buy a CD by your favourite band.

hmv2

Picture courtesy of The Guardian.co.uk

No we can easily buy these things online from anywhere in the world, in fact CDs and DVDs are now slowly being phased out and replaced with MP3s and MP4s that are downloaded instantaneously. In fact films and TV are now being streamed live directly to our computers and smart phones. It doesn’t stop there, even clothing, books, birthday cards, and food can be bought online.

I wasn’t just referring to a full grocery shop worth of food that you can order from your local supermarket and have delivered, no I was meaning the food you enjoy from your favourite local take away can now be ordered online and delivered to your door.

just eat

The internet has changed the way we buy the things we like, of course the online world will not replace every kind of business or industry, for example Amazon might sell all of its products online but they have big distribution centres and they will need building, the products need packing by staff into boxes that were manufactured in factories.

There will always be offline industries, the houses we live in still need building but on the whole, the internet and the new technologies that is being developed since its creation are changing the world we live in and it will never be the same again.

Mankind is at a point similar to the old industrial revolution, at the turn of the 19th Century people were afraid of the future as new machinery like the loom were replacing weavers. This machinery made thousands of people unemployed; people were not living the life of leisure as the industrial revolution expected.

Only a few became wealthy and lived better lives as the machinery helped increase profits and decrease the overheads of running a business. But, as new machinery is created new jobs are also created.

During the industrial revolution bigger and better ships and transport networks were created meaning products could be sold to more people further afield. This meant more loom operators, delivery people, and ship builders were needed also railway lines and canals were being built so navvies and builders were employed in large numbers.

We are seeing a very similar change in the society we live in today. If you are feeling low believing that we are living in times of high unemployment and insecurity think again. It could be far worse, how many people have smart phones, high definition TVs and all manner of computing equipment like tablets and iPads? Most of us do and they need making, someone somewhere is being employed to make these things which were not available 10 years ago.

Yes you can argue that much of the electrical gadgets we enjoy are made overseas but even so, there are businesses in the western world dedicated to creating apps and software for these machines. There are shops that employ people to sell them and of course these shops have online stores that need people.

The advancements in technology do mean that a machine can do the job of several people so yes people will be made unemployed because of some machines but then again, these machines need building, designing, delivering and managing so jobs are created.

Companies that were offline now are online and that means they are hiring people to manage websites, create website content and manage social media profiles so again more new jobs have been created.

The great thing about the internet is that it has opened up the doors of the world for the average person to create a business from the comfort of their home using staff in countries like India and the Philippines to do most of the work. Only today I was going through 51 applications to a small job that I posted on oDesk.com. There were applicants from the U.K., India, Bangladesh, Philippines, Jamaica, Kenya, U.S.A. and Lithuania.

odesk

These people can work for me from their own homes in countries that I probably never visit because they use a VPN from https://getmoreprivacy.com/, they can do web design, writing work, app building and many more and when the job is done it can be emailed to me or simply dropped into a shared folder like Dropbox.com or Google Drive. This means I can access files from any computer and smart phone from anywhere in the world as can the people I give permission to.

So what can the average Joe Public do to make money online? Well to be honest there are a lot of things, way too many to list, there is so much opportunity online and when you consider how little a website can cost to host it makes you wonder why more people do not have one.

The good thing about this is that use a canadian vpn service which is the perfect tool for a secure sharing mode, we have our data in a restricted zone to be access just by the ones we need to, the vpn offers privacy and a better network connection to work with. These shared folders make sharing projects a lot easier than emailing work to each other.

A website can cost as little as £60 a year to host if you use a WordPress theme that is free. If you invested in a premium theme and your whole cost for the year was £100 you have 365 days to make that back, and it is possible. You put £100 in a bank and leave it for a year you will not earn much in interest.

Invest £100 and build a website, add content and create T-shirts using a site like  as an example, then use free networks like Facebook, YouTube and Twitter you can drive traffic to your site where people can buy your T-Shirts.

If you had a website based around a hobby that you love, a website that cost little to set up where you paid someone to create content for the site as well as doing some yourself then your site has a healthy chance of being found. You are then in a great position to generate money from  advertising revenue where people pay you to show their adverts, to generate money from promoting affiliate products via email lists or reviews on your site.

An online business for the average person with a day job is a great way to generate a second income from little investment. It is far better than putting money into a bank. This is a changing world, the internet is the new frontier for business, people can access the internet from mobile phones and small hand held tablets anywhere. Isn’t it time to take your slice of the action? CafePress.com

How To Become a bizzebee Yourself.

  • August 27 , 2013

To be successful in business takes work, now before you panic and start shouting at me all those great quotes about how to become a bizzebee featured image‘working smart and not hard’ let me just say I said ‘work’, not ‘hard work’. That work can be hard and/or smart but importantly you have to know that whatever it is you want to achieve in life then you are going to have to put some work in.

I get so annoyed at people who complain that they never get any breaks in life or that they have no money to play with or that life is simply crap for them. These people generally dream of a better life but never do anything. If you are one of those people who complain that there simply isn’t enough time to do things that can change your life then I am afraid that I am going to tell you that you have exactly the same amount of time each day as Richard Branson, Sir Alan Sugar, Donald Trump and Bob Proctor.

the wealthy blokes.jpg

We all have 24 hours in a day to work with, now I appreciate we have different circumstances in life and energy levels, some of you might have family and children and some of you might be single with no attachments. Some of you might be athletes with a lot of energy who can work effectively on only 5 hours of sleep and some of you might be unfortunate to have something like ME which saps you of energy and means you could be in bed more than the average person.

We are different that we cannot get away from that fact but what if your energy levels were low because you ate rubbish food? Wouldn’t it pay you to eat better food so that you were better in mind and body which would mean you could get more work done that could change your life?

Putting that aside let’s look at other fundamental things in your lives that could be holding you back from becoming more successful. As I said earlier, we all have the same 24hours a day to play with. It is often down to what you do with that time that gets you your positive or negative results.

So you want to make more money each month and you have a great idea how, but it means that you need to spend at least 10 hours on the project each week. Where do you find that extra 10 hours? You could have a day job that robs you of 12 hours of the day and then you get home to the family. You could be working for 8 hours then go and spend 2 hours at the gym, 1 hour for the work out and then an hour getting showered and travelling etc.

You might be single and doing 10 hour shifts who then loves to go out and socialise most nights and weekends. It can be easy to clock up how many hours you are busy and show how little time you actually have spare.

What Do You HAVE To Do & What Do You CHOOSE To Do?

Get a notepad and create two columns. At the top of one column write ‘Things I Have To Do’ and at the top of the other column write ‘Things I Choose To Do’. Now fill in both columns and be honest here, do not go adapting times to suit your opinions as you are only fooling yourself.

In the column ‘Things I Have To Do’ write down things like your day job, family commitments and household chores and how much time is spent doing them. You could do this for the day or for the week it is up to you. As for the column ‘Things I Choose To Do’ write down things like watching TV, visiting friends, going out etc and how many hours you spend doing it.

two columns.jpg

Also include the times you get up and go to bed, work out how much sleep you get and if you really need that amount.

As I say be as honest as possible, this is for you, you are only fooling yourself if you are not honest. It doesn’t matter to me. Once you start to write down you will see a more balance view of what you spend your time on each day/week.

If you want an extra 10 hours a day and finding it hard to work out where you will find it you could soon start to see that you spend a lot of time doing things that really do not benefit you at all. For example you may find that you have fallen into the habit of watching TV soaps like Coronation Street, Emmerdale and Eastenders with your other half. She might not even be bothered whether she watches them with or without you. Giving them up will release time to work on that all important new project.

You need to ask yourself what is more important, do you want that extra money each month or do you want to know if Norris really does get Emily’s house for nothing? Which is more important to you?

norris and emily.jpg

Do An Earlier Start To The Day

Maybe you wake at 6am everyday and enjoy a lie in for another hour or two; do you really need that lie in? Maybe you wake up naturally and try to get back to sleep but just end up laying their getting annoyed. If you do not get back to sleep and still do a full day’s work then it is safe to say that you do not need any more sleep so why not get up and get to your laptop and do an hour or two of writing or whatever it is you need to do?

Bob Proctor used to get up an hour earlier each day to write his book ‘You Were Born Rich’ that extra hour a day meant he would write 1 or 2,000 new words which over a short period of time resulted in him having a whole new book to sell or giveaway which greatly benefitted his business and his life.

bob proctor book.jpg

Utilise A Wasted Evening

It could be that you go to bed and watch repeats of Family Guy and American Dad every night on BBC3 like I used to. That is roughly 2 hours each night, you might really love it, (I did :)) but do you love the feeling you have each month when you are struggling to pay the bills or when you realise you have no money left to spend once all of the bills are paid?

family guy american dad.jpg

What Do You HAVE To Spend Your Money On?

If money is an issue and you are finding that you have very little money to invest on things like WordPress themes, website hosting or getting written work done etc then go back to your note pad again and do another two columns but this time instead of focusing on time you should focus on money.

Compare the money you Have to spend on things like bills, food and family etc with the money you Choose to spend on things like take away food, cigarettes and alcohol. You could be amazed at how much money you waste on non essential things that could prevent you going forward with your new business venture.

You would be right if you are beginning to see another fundamental rule in this post, and that is planning. When you spend time doing your time and money comparisons you will see that you are in fact not planning your time and money as effectively as you could so now you can see you have spare money and time to do the work and that you have several time slots when you can focus on your new projects.

Planning your time effectively is important; you need to have a list and a schedule of when you will do certain tasks and what you will spend your money on and in what order. Get a large hard backed note book, I prefer one that has a ring binder so you can flip the cover right over, and write down what tasks need doing and in an order of priorities. Then assign each task to a time slot that you know you have.

Pinch Time Out Of An Empty Weekend

Today I knew that my other half was going out to the garden centre with her parents, for me it isn’t my favourite past time and there is no need for me to go with them so I knew I had several hours spare. So what did I do?

I used the time to work on a few posts including this one. I have a few projects that I am working on but I knew these posts needed doing over others and so these became the priority. I could go into town and have a few cheeky beers or I could stick the TV on and get lost in some Sci-Fi adventure which I would really love but I need these posts written so that is what I chose to spend my time doing.

It’s not really that hard as I often stick music on as I write as long as it isn’t too distracting, it is really very enjoyable so not only am I having fun I know it is all going towards a better future outcome. The more I do the better the results will be and the better my life will be.

It is all about choices and decisions, we have time and money to spend on things that can help us change our lives, we might have different amounts of money or time spare but it is simply down to us to use what we do have more effectively and decide what and when we do things. So I have shown you what I do to become more of a bizzebee, it is now over to you. 🙂

A-Z Guide

A-Z of Online Marketing

  • August 26 , 2013

a-z online marketing

This is the complete A-Z of Online Marketing from BizzeBee – this list could have been very different, it got re-written several times. In fact if I was to write it again some time down the line it would change again. But – these terms are all relevant in today’s online marketing efforts. Whilst I would not expect businesses or individuals to use each and every term I am sure you will find some value in some of these. There may even be one or two you are unfamiliar with. So, read on then let the debate roll on……

A – Affiliate Marketing

Affiliate marketing is essentially when you promote other companies products and in turn they will pay you a commission for doing so. So, you do not even need your own product to start your own business online. There are many affiliate networks online; Commission Junction, JVZoo and PayDotCom are just a few. There are many more in many different niches online.

B – Blogging

Having a blog is a great way to get fresh new content to your site. Just because your main niche is not blogging doesn’t mean you should not have one. In fact, I would argue that every website or company could and should have one. Blogging is a great way to interact with your readers which in turn are your potential or even existing customers. Google loves fresh content and blogging regularly is a great way to please the search engines, which in turn helps your site and traffic overall.

C – Content Marketing

Content marketing is virtually what all respected online companies will do – to some degree. Content marketing is when a business tries to acquire new customers by publishing new content out across the web. Content can be in the form of a blog, eBooks, videos, presentations photos – basically anything.  We strongly recommend content marketing as you will reap the rewards in the long term as your brand will be in many places across many different mediums.

D – Domain Name

Your domain name is key so choose it wisely. We have discussed this before on the blog and there is a very detailed free report in the email guide. When registering your domain name try to avoid things like hyphens or too long, confusing names. Something that people can “reel of the tongue” will be better overall.

E – Email Marketing

Email marketing is a great way to keep in touch with your customers. Check out Andi’s post on why you should build an email list from the start. By not having an email list you could be leaving potential customers behind. Offer something of great value to get your visitors to opt-in and treat your list as a very valuable asset to your business.

F – Facebook

Facebook is huge and every business should have some presence on there. It can be a great way to reach out to your customers perhaps in an informal way. It could also be used to run competitions or show off pictures from a staff event. Check out “The Social Media Commitment” and “Tips For Your Business Facebook Page

G – Google Plus

Not quite as popular in terms of numbers alongside Facebook but it is essential to have a profile with your business here too. The benefits of having a Google Plus account are very big indeed. Linking your authorship on your blogs, Google hangouts, free storage with Google Drive are all benefits of having an account with Google Plus.

H – Help Others

Being helpful in the online world is a given. This should be up there on your mission statement, if you try to solve other people’s problems and offer a helpful and effective solution then you will be on the right path that is for sure. If people email you – email them back, if people make comments on your site/blog/Facebook page then interact with them. Basically, care.

I – Info-products

You don’t have to only sell physical products in order to succeed online. The digital marketplace is now bigger than ever and continues to grow. You could create a short course, or a tutorial, write a kindle book that promotes your brand. All of these options are potential income streams for your business.

ebooks

J – Joint-Venture

A joint venture is where you form a partnership with somebody else or many others with a product or website launch. Joint ventures can be a great way to split the workload and utilise each other’s skill sets better. For example you may have one person who is great at creating online products and other who has a large list of affiliates and has many years of writing sales copy. You could form a joint venture and split the profits 50/50.

K – Keywords

Keywords are for when writing content on your site. A keyword is usually something that you will target for somebody to search for. Great content and just as importantly unique content though will have Google picking up your content for keywords you had not even thought of. These may be long-tail keywords, such as full sentences or 4/5 words together. You should at least be wary of what keywords you are targeting.

L – Links

Links are what the Internet is essentially made up off. A link can be an internal link, i.e going from your website to another page on your website. Or, it can be an external link, going from your website to a different website. So – links are important if you want your website to be a success. But the quality of the link is where it matters. I would much rather have one link from the CNN website than 100 links from some very low quality sites that nobody visits.

M – Mobile Friendly

Try to remember not everyone is using their desktop PC’s anymore. People like to use tablets, laptops and smartphones now. So you must make your site user friendly for this audience. I think you will be surprised if you actually looked at the figures for the percentage of people that viewed your site that wasn’t on a traditional PC. If you are a WordPress user there are plugins and themes available that are suitable for this.

N – Niche

When choosing your niche make sure you have an interest in it yourself. This will make the whole thing one hell of a lot easier when it comes to providing content. Whilst it is important to choose a niche that is profitable, choosing one that you are passionate about is arguably more important.

O – Organic Growth

You want your visitors to your site to grow, and this will happen naturally over time if you follow the rules outlined in SEO and social media campaigns. As your site grows with content as will your numbers that are flocking to your site organically.  Organic traffic is what comes to your site from search engines.

P – Promotion

No business either offline or online would have success without promotion. The key is getting the right balance. Do not fill your Facebook page just with promotions to your products or sites, but on the same note make sure you drop a few in now and again. These are your customers after all and they would not be there if they did not like what you do – however over promotion can put people off and drive customers away.

Q – QR Codes

QR or Quick Response Codes are a neat little way of keeping your customers interacting. These are bar codes that when scanned can take the user to a specific page, give them an offer, a website, phone number or many other things. These are huge in the Japan and the East. Soon enough you will see these on product advertising, printed on billboards and being used for marketing and advertising all over the place. Something to consider for your business?

QR codes

R – Research

Essential for when either choosing your niche or even when you are established. Things change all the time so you need to keep up to date. When deciding on a specific product launch or maybe a new website tutorial – make sure you do your research first. It’s amazing how much money can be lost if you get something so trivial wrong. An incorrect pricing structure for example can result in thousands of lost dollars if you haven’t researched the current marketplace.

S – SEO

Search Engine Optimization. You should at least make some effort to try and do this, even if you do only the basics. We have discussed this here on the blog, little goes a lot further than nothing. Do not try to rank for too highly competitive keywords and remember the key principles. Take a read of ‘Now You SEO Me‘ to learn more.

T – Traffic

Traffic is the life-blood of your online business or website. There are many forms of traffic generation from free traffic to paid traffic. Social media can have many great benefits with traffic but can be time-consuming, advertising can be a great way to increase the visitor count but can be expensive, SEO can be great at gaining new visitors but Google change the rules all the time. Basically it can be a bit of nightmare when you start your traffic mission. But – there are literally tons of ways. Check out ‘What To Do After Hitting Publish‘ and ‘10Twitter Traffic Tips

U – USP

Unique Selling Point – what is it that you offer that is different or unique from your competitors? It may be that you offer more, offer it at more competitive pricing, offer more in terms of content? Whatever it is you should stress this in your sites content and marketing strategies. What is our USP at BizzeBee? Well, it’s the fact that we are a team of individuals and with all of our experiences online there is not much that we have not seen or cannot offer advice about.

V – Viral

Going viral is great for your business. This term cropped up in and around various social media circles when pictures or videos got thousands sometimes millions of views. Companies are started to get on board with Viral Marketing as a way of generating traffic and leads to their site. It only take one funny caption, picture or video on a couple of platforms and you could be getting thousands of visitors in a very short space of time.

viral marketing

W – Web Hosting

It is critical from the outset that your online business is hosted the best possible way. We recommend Hostgator here and with their uptimes and great support package you could do a lot worse that signing up with them.

X – ConteXt

Ok – so I didn’t have one that began with ‘x’! – But context is the next big thing to sweep the search engines. If you are an SEO guy and plan to use this for a large part of your traffic methods then you should do your homework on context. It is quite complex but basically it is a new algorithm that is going to be built into the search engines which will make search results more “human” – for example if you search “What is the best traffic method” and “whats the best traffic methods” you would get a mixed amount of results and possibly only a few matching websites across both queries, they will certainly rank differently. So – remember this.

Y – YouTube

YouTube as you probably know is a free to use video hosting platform. This can also be a great traffic source too. Your online marketing efforts can see great benefit from video, not only do marketing videos convert well they can also be a more suitable medium for explaining something. If you have a series of training tutorials you want to teach then using video may be a better way than text. With YouTube you can host them for free and then post them on your site. You need a Google account to upload to YouTube.

Z – Zest

And finally  – ZEST. You must have zest in order to succeed online. You will get knockbacks, you will get hurdles to overcome, you will get bad customers – but it’s how you raise up above these challenges on your journey to the top. Zest is defined as living life full of excitement, energy and anticipation. All great strengths that will help you in your bid for your own slice of the online empire.

I hope you have taken something from this article. Please feel free to drop a comment in below, I would love to hear your thoughts. Or perhaps you would have given some letters different online marketing terms?

Dealing With Negativity | BizzeBee

Dealing With Negativity

  • August 23 , 2013

Dealing With Negativity

So it’s happened, you knew it would only be a matter of time, but there you see it right in front of you on the screen. Someone has left you an unhappy message on your Facebook wall, or sent out a Tweet to all their followers expressing their concerns with something you’ve said / not done / sold.

That’s the problem with the public nature of Social Media, it’s given the people power!

Now the comments could be fabricated, perhaps a little mountain / molehill situation, or maybe absolutely on point. I’m here to tell you today that this isn’t the end of the world, and (if) handled correctly will not have as much of a “bad” impact as you are first thinking.

Kneejerk reactions are great (believe me I’ve made them myself) in the heat of the moment, when someone is unhappy they say things they might not mean/say on reflection, so it’s VERY important that you don’t react in a similar manner.

Building your online reputation takes time and is hard work – the effort and thought gone into your website, email marketing campaign, even your social profiles all counts. You really don’t want to see that destroyed by an irritated customer.

Dependant upon your business type and where the negative comment was posted will determine the effect it has on your business however.

For example, if you are running a hotel / B&B and you are in Trip Advisor, or a hotel booking site like booking.com, or you are an Amazon seller and something negative has been said it can be a little bit devastating.

If it’s a rogue tweet, it tends to disappear from the newsfeeds quite quickly so it doesn’t tend to be too much of a problem, that said however I do firmly believe and recommend that you respond – follow up with a call, email or message to try and rectify the situation.

In those situations, take note of it, and try to avoid it from happening again in the future.

Responding to Negative Comments on Facebook

The easiest and most simple way here is to delete said comment if it has been posted on your own Page wall, or alternatively you can just make a few page updates – text, links, photos, videos and pretty quickly the comment will just filter down the page list, without too many people seeing it.

If the comment is made on another person’s Facebook page then the only option you really have is to ask the page owner to remove it, or report it to Facebook or just ignore it (which yes I know can be hard, especially if you find it to be untrue)

Personally I’m actually a fan of the negative comments, they give you an opportunity to REALLY excel with your customer service skills and actually turn a positive into a negative pretty quickly.

Take a look at the screenshot below – a perfect example of someone who was disgruntled by some Facebook advertising appearing in their newsfeed so decided to take it out on the page post. Some carefully polite words later, another person picked up on the attitude of Affordable Printing Co’s good manner and actually said that reading the response had made them sit in that person’s mind for any printing if they needed it in the future. The disgruntled customer didn’t come back with any reply, but it certainly sparked some good feedback.

Dealing With Negativity | Bizzebee

Responding To Negative Comments On Twitter

The same goes with Twitter; the very public nature of the platform with the hashtags means that if an unhappy customer tweets with a relevant hashtag to your business it will be seen by all who are looking for that keyword.

You need to be quick off the starting blocks, don’t ignore those messages / tweets if they are persistent. By remaining silent those people who are seeing these comments with your business name attached may think you simply don’t care.

My advice in that instance is to respond with all the relevant hashtag keywords used directly to the user, and offer to get the situation resolved in a mutually beneficial way, and steer the conversation onto email asap – out of the public domain.

People don’t like to be ignored, they know that by using their virtual “speakers corner” they will be heard and taken seriously. I’ve seen many instances of negatives becoming positives by the swift action of the person at the centre of the negativity.

Responding To Negative Comments On Your Website / Blog

The good thing about your website / blog is that you are often in control of who / what posts on it. People generally respond and will warm to those who keep their cool, so its very important to remain composed in these instances.

If the comment on the site isn’t derogatory or carrying bad language I’d be inclined to let it ride on the site, and you respond demonstrating your company’s ability to handle the good, the bad and the ugly.

State fact: if it’s over lost or damaged goods, provide proof; offer an alternative solution that keeps the customer with you.

Ask yourself “are you at fault? If the answer is YES then you apologise and make the situation right (i.e. refund, resend goods, re supply service)

There are those people that no matter what / how you respond will just go on a rampage of negative comments, this can be quite tiresome. Aside from taking legal advice if the comments are bordering on slanderous, the only thing you can do is try to use it to your advantage.

Screenshot the comments, and put it out there for your happy customers to see – let them respond, or collate testimonials in favour of your services, if you are doing a good job the ratio won’t take long to imbalance itself in your favour. Varied positives from different customers soon stamps all over repeated comments from the one source.

In conclusion, don’t panic! It’ really isn’t the be all and end all on your social channels if this does happen. You can use this to your advantage, and turn it into a PR success! If, you don’t feel confident in your responses, then the Bizzebee community team are here and happy to provide impartial advice on the best course of action you could take to keep your brand in the best possible light.

Clair 🙂 

Quality Content – The Lifeblood Of Your Website

  • August 22 , 2013

Quality Content

All websites need quality content as that is what ultimately attracts visitors.  Content also helps you rank well in the search engines and (hopefully) will be shared on social media by your readers once they find it.  That is why it’s important that your content is up to scratch, because if it’s not, you can’t expect to create a popular site.  Content is king after all!

What Makes Quality Content?

So what makes good content I hear you say?  Well there is no secret formula; a lot of it will just come down to practice.  There are, however, certain things that you can do to improve your posts.  Let’s take a look at some.

Check Your Spelling & Grammar!

Create Quality Content for your site

One thing that readers really hate is poorly written articles!  Nobody will begrudge the odd genuine mistake (we all make them), but if your posts are littered with them, then it doesn’t look very good.  It doesn’t take long to double or even triple check your posts before you publish them, as it will certainly make a difference.

This may seem obvious, but I’m constantly finding blogs that don’t seem to do this.  It gives the impression that they have rushed writing the article or just don’t care.  These types of mistakes will just end up costing you traffic.  I’ve seen lots of great quality posts written by people whose first language isn’t English, so it’s even more frustrating to find poorly written posts by people who actually speak English as their first language.

For me it is a matter of pride.  You are creating something to be published online, which is a reflection on you.  You don’t know who will end up reading that, so you may as well make sure that it is of the highest standard that you can.

Use Paragraphs, Subtitles & Bullet Points

Let’s face it, large chunks of text can be quite boring.  If we wanted to read a novel, we would have bought a book.

Readers can be quite intimidated by a mass of text, especially when it is a rather long post.  That is why it’s important to try and break up your posts as much as you can.

Structuring your posts with short paragraphs, subtitles and bullet points are all great ways to break up your posts.  Not only does it make it easier for people to read, but it makes it easier for them to scan through.  Like it or not, the vast majority of people scan through posts to find the bits they are after, so you may as well make it easy for them.

Add Images

Quality Content

Similarly, adding images can help break up your posts.  Text on its own is rather dull, so adding images can help brighten them up and make them a lot more visually appealing. 

Don’t just use them for the sake of it though.  Images are great to help make a point or explain something in a more visual way.  Tutorial posts are a good example as you would want to include as many screenshots as you could to help guide the reader through what you are talking about.  Infographics or slideshows are another way that you can add quality information to your posts in the form of images.

The added benefit of images (that most people forget about) is that they can help bring in traffic to a site.  Your post images can appear in the Google Image search results, so people can find your site that way.

Add Videos

People are lazy!  If given the choice between reading something or watching something, more often than not they will choose to watch something.  Adding videos to your posts can help to engage your readers and keep them on your site for longer.

The added benefit to videos is that you can convey a lot more information in them.  Instead of simply writing a tutorial, why not record a tutorial showing people how to do something (or better yet do both).  That way, your readers can see exactly what you are trying to show them.

They don’t even need to be your own videos!  You can embed any videos from YouTube into your posts.  People won’t mind, as they will get more views and you get a nice video for your site.  It’s a win-win.

Just make sure that your videos are responsive so that they can be viewed on mobile devices.

Write For Your Readers, Not For Yourself!

At the heart of any quality content should be your readers.  They are the people that you should be writing for, they are your audience, your customers, the lifeblood of your site – so make sure you are writing for them!

It’s easy to get distracted and end up writing on what you want to focus on (believe me, I’ve done it enough times), but you should always try to take a step back and assess whether this is what your audience wants.

Why not just ask them yourself!  Get on social media and ask your followers what they want to read about next or whether they have any questions they want you to answer.  This is one of the best ways to produce quality content as you are giving your readers what they want.  Plus, you can get some very loyal readers if you made a post for them specifically.

Be Patient, It Takes Time

At the end of the day, you can’t expect to write quality content from day 1.  It will take time for you to find your voice and get into the swing of things.  All these tips will help you along the way, but the more content you write, the better you will get – it just takes practice and perseverance.

What do you think makes good quality content?  What do you think makes bad content?  Please let us know by leaving a comment below!

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