All Posts by Sylvia LeRahl

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Apr 02

4 Things Your Business Absolutely Needs to Maintain Great Online Presence

By Sylvia LeRahl | Blog

It is an absolute necessity in today’s business climate for small business owners to maintain a great presence online. An online presence will provide your small business with a greater level of credibility while causing your business to become much easier to find by potential customers.

It may seem a bit complicated to new business owners who wish to establish a solid presence online. However, there is no reason to fear the process. The following steps are available to all owners of small businesses who are interested in making their mark online.

A Blog

Business blogging is an essential tool for business owners who possess the desire to stand out from the crowd while maintaining their online presence. An exceptionally written blog post will keep your customers engaged and encourage them to share the post with others, according to Keap. This is a great way to build your customer base.

Some business owners feel it is difficult to find the time necessary to research and prepare well thought out blog entries. You should take some time each morning before the start of the business day and dedicate it to your blog. If this proves too much of a challenge, you may need to enlist the help of others to maintain this vital process. Pressive can help your blog posts provide insightful tips or encourage feedback or even incite action.

Google My Business

Google My Business is an excellent tool offered by Google to business owners free of charge. The tool will allow you to set up a profile for your business that includes the name of your business and general contact information. Customers will be able to better locate your business through Local Finder, Google Maps, and organic search results.

Your business information will appear whenever someone searches specifically for your business or your business type in three separate locations: The Google sidebar, Google Maps, and local results. Because of this, you should be sure to claim your Google My Business listing and make sure all pertinent data is added accurately to the profile.

Another great benefit of Google My Business is it provides a central location for customers to leave reviews of your business and access the views of past customers. While it may seem tedious it is highly important to pay close attention to the reviews you receive. According to Podium, the vast majority of people, 84 percent to be exact, trust online reviews as much as recommendations from friends and family.  

Social Media

If you decide to only use one social media platform to gain exposure for your business, it would probably be a good idea to choose Facebook. The platform is used by 1.5 billion people across the planet and is by far the most popular social media platform.

Market research further demonstrates many Facebook users are decision makers for their households and use social media to procure a number of products and services.

Another benefit of Facebook is the targeted advertising offered by the platform. It is both inexpensive and effective. You should be creative with your use of Facebook for your business. You can use the platform to share news regarding your company, remind customers of seasonal services, advertise offers from your company, and share your company culture with those who interact with your company Facebook page.

Instagram and Twitter are natural places to expand once you are ready to increase your exposure on social media platforms. You should remember consistency is key when it comes to social media interaction. So, be sure to set up a schedule of posts that you will be able to maintain.

A Company Website

A company website is the home base online for your business and in many ways is just as important as your physical location. Potential customers will expect to find your company website online if they hear about your business by some other means.

Your website should be simple and convenient to use while answering the common questions potential customers are likely to have says Dogulin Digital. Your website should also provide a quick and effective way for customers to connect with your products or services.

More than likely, the information you need to provide the material for your website is in your head or written down somewhere. If you do not already have a website, invest the time needed to organize the information into content that can be exhibited on your new website.

There are a number of free website platforms available for business owners who are not ready for advanced website solutions. There are also more advanced platforms for business owners with a little more skill in regard to web design.

Today’s competitive business climate makes it an absolute necessity for business owners to maintain a strong presence online. The four tips above are simple to use methods any business owner can use to increase their online presence.

Mar 14

3 Tricks for Making Content People Will Want to Read

By Sylvia LeRahl | Blog

A lot of people want their content to stand out from the rest. Whether you own a blog or business that uses a variety of types of content to promote your product or service, mediocre should never be your goal. Content that gets read is rated higher by Google, which helps SEO, and it also helps your readers and gains their trust. But how, exactly, do you make content that people actually want to read? Here are three tips to help you create it.

Provoke an Emotional Response

You want to create content that emotionally resonates with a broad audience, but how do you do that? Research shows pride, love, achievement, man’s empathy, friendships, loneliness or memories perform best. Make sure your content stands out by using examples of relatable and specific situations that spark emotion. For instance, if you have a storefront, telling a story about an employee helping an elderly person bring their purchases out to their car or doing some other service that promotes a sense of friendship and empathy can engage readers on an emotional level.

Change Your Style

While writing, many people think about the message and information that they’re trying to convey, but this isn’t the only factor in what makes content engaging. The type of style that you use will depend on your readership and the concept, service, or product that you’re trying to promote. For example, some blog writing styles use the second person to engage readers and create the impression of having a conversation. There are many styles to choose from, but not all of them are easily usable on an online medium. For instance, blog posts are rarely written in the first person because it pulls the reader’s attention away from themselves and onto the speaker. This technique can also appear self-absorbed in the wrong context.

Find Fresh Topics

If you’ve read 27 listicles on a particular topic, you can’t merely make the 28th version and expect it to feel fresh. You need to take a new angle on a familiar topic, incorporate new resources, or talk about something that’s on the cutting edge. Brainstorm ideas and make a process for creating content. Case studies and thought leadership posts can also garner engaging, unique ideas. Fresh topics will make your blog feel relevant and worth reading.

If you’re looking for ways to make your content engaging, you’re on the right track to making a better blog. After all, blog posts are meant to inform and engage, not merely fill up a white page.

If making engaging content just isn’t in your wheelhouse, or perhaps your time would be better used doing something else, let On the Verge Writing help!

Mar 01

4 Things You Have to Know Before You Start a Business Blog

By Sylvia LeRahl | Blog

Blogging has become more competitive than ever, especially when blogging about business. This means that you’ll need to ensure that your blog is set up for success. Knowing your audience, the best keywords, the best topics to write about, and some basic code to bring it all together can be a great formula for success. Keep reading to find out more.

Your Audience

It is important to know who you are talking to. Are you talking to men or women? The elderly or teenagers? In the case of business, you’re probably talking to young adults and older adults who are from a variety of races, backgrounds, genders, and religions.

This is an extremely wide spectrum of people so you can find ways to narrow down your audience. Mary Pomerantz explains, “figure out who your target demographic is by talking to them! Experiment with different styles of posts, and find what works best for you. Make sure you are talking with your customers and not just talking at them. If you are worried about starting like that, look at other successful brands in your desired quadrant, or other areas, and see what works for them.”

Keywords

Keywords are extremely important when you are creating an SEO blog. Many people think that stuffing keywords into their writing over and over again is the best way to do this. In fact, they may stuff keywords so much that sentences just don’t make sense and it just looks ugly. This is not the right way to do this.

Keywords should appear in a blog as naturally as possible. It should appear in the beginning and only a few times in the middle. It could also appear in a heading. You also want to make sure you are using the right keywords. This can be the difference between your blog getting no traffic and your blog becoming extremely popular.

Podium cautions, “shouldn’t use blog posts to just cram a bunch of keywords you want to rank on. People come to blogs looking for answers or advice, and if your business blog doesn’t provide those, then you’re doing a disservice to both your business, and your clients.”

Trends

Knowing the most current trends in business can help you write content that people want to read about. This ensures that your blog is meeting your readers’ needs. If your readers are happy, you’ll likely get repeat visitors.

Snap Agency recommends, “staying on trend can also lend a hand to your credibility. Listening to podcasts, keeping up with the news, reading books, going to networking and marketing events, surrounding yourself with interesting people and things, and always be searching for more information can keep you up to date, and able to give a topical opinion on things.” Readers want to be able to trust you and it’s hard to do that if you’re blogging about some twenty-year-old topic that isn’t relevant anymore (unless you happen to have a history blog). Blogging about old, irrelevant topics can also make you seem even more uninformed than the reader.

Basic Coding

Hello You Designs encourages, “you don’t need to know how to build a blogging site from scratch–they have plenty of free or inexpensive blogging platforms for that–but knowing some basic HTML or CSS can help you to make your blog look good.” Looks and layout of your blog is important because it makes it easy for your readers to navigate your blog.

These four tips can set your blog apart from competitors and help keep visitors flowing to your blog. They will help you organize your most relevant information in an attractive way to readers. Before you know it, you could have one of the most successful blogs on the internet.

For reliable, consistent blog content, let On the Verge Writing help! We can help with blog writing, SEO content, technical writing, promotional writing, and more!

online writing
Nov 06

5 Copywriting Techniques Your Blog Needs Today

By Sylvia LeRahl | Blog

Creating a blog is one of the best ways to project your voice while appealing to readers around the world. Before you begin sharing content, it’s essential to understand the differences between print writing and online writing. Only then can you truly succeed at launching a blog and generating content for your intended audience.

Online Writing vs. Print Media

online writing

Online writing is vastly different from print media. Both mediums have their advantages, as explained by Newstyle Media: “Digital is the latest way to reach new and existing customers, and print ads in magazines are still a viable option.”

Print media is often highly journalistic and requires in-depth reporting and fact-checking for each published piece. It comes out on a regular schedule, has limited readership, and tends to be read all the way through.

Online writing, on the other hand, provides more freedom and flexibility. It allows you to share personal opinions and thoughts with each new piece of content you post, and it tends to be designed for faster reading. This is especially true if you’re in a high-value market, such as a membership site business.

Whether you prefer writing articles on the latest news stories or you want to share original stories with your fans, the sky’s the limit when launching a blog.

Get to Know Your Audience

online writing

Getting to know your audience is essential when you begin a blog. Consider the type of people you want to reach, as well as their age, interests, and even their location. Maryville University teaches that “the key is to know your audience and its likes, and to tailor your writing style to your audience… The expectations of an online reader are far different from those of someone accustomed to reading print publications.”

The more familiar you become with your target audience, the easier it is to generate relevant content that truly resonates with them, keeping them coming back for more.

Use Your Own, Unique Voice

online writing

Choose a voice for your blog that is uniquely your own. Steer clear of copying the format and wording of other blogs. Users are likely to find such copying less authentic. When you keep your thoughts and voice consistent, you’ll create a following that’s sincere. It’ll want to see you continue to succeed with your blogging venture.

Set Goals for Your Content

online writing

Set goals for each piece of content you create. Create outlines and consider the emotions you want each article to evoke. Spend time brainstorming each blog entry you plan to make sure it fits with your real thoughts and opinions on the subject matter.

SEO Matters

Keep SEO in mind when launching a blog or official website of your own. Learn the basics of SEO (search engine optimization). That includes implementing proper subject lines, headers, and keywords to outperform your competition in top search engine results.

You would be surprised by just how critical proper SEO writing techniques can be when putting out online content. If it’s not optimized, it might never be seen by your target audience. Fortunately, our team at On the Verge Writing offers SEO writing services. Consider them when crafting your dream blog. We’ll make sure you get noticed.

When you understand the differences between print and online media, you can start a blog that’s easy to read and well-liked by your followers. The more time you spend on crafting a unique voice and viewpoint, the easier it is to appeal to your target audience while maximizing your reach online.

Oct 31

The Keys to Writing Professional Blog Content for Your Business

By Sylvia LeRahl | Blog

blog post

As more companies take their business online, many are starting to publish blogs on their website. The online blog post replaces former print newsletters and marketing fliers full of information.

Now, however, millions of blog posts are published by individuals and organizations around the world. That said, we all know that not everyone is a good writer.

Fortunately, there are several basic types of styles to utilize to improve your writing.

An article can be expository or narrative, persuasive or analytical, or even a hybrid of all. Companies who want to promote their business in this way should designate qualified writers to develop blog post content. Content then shares relevant information in an accessible manner. Of many writing styles, the following are especially common and effective to create conversions.

Try Out Expository Content

The root word of this writing approach is “expos-,” meaning to reveal or illuminate a particular concept. An organization might use this style of blog post to expound hypothetically about a what-if situation within the industry. Similar to an essay, which means to “try out” an idea, an expository approach examines a trend, a crisis, an event, or some other phenomenon to share the company’s perspective on relevant business issues pertaining primarily to the economy or company dealings.

Utilize the Narrative Style

blog post

A narrative blogging style uses a first-person perspective or experience. A business writer could discuss a recent company transaction or a personal experience that helps to explain a current situation. The narrative mode follows a chronological or sequential order and makes a valid point by the end.

Write Persuasively  

One of the most commonly-used communication styles in the professional realm is the art of persuasion. Popular in advertising and marketing materials, the persuasive writing strategy seeks to inform and influence readers about a topic, person, product, or event. According to eCommerce CEO, 95% of our purchase decision occurs in the subconscious mind, which means persuasive copy is going to be essential to describe a product or service during a blog. Which means this is probably the most important writing style to utilize for your business.

Add a Few Analytical Posts Here and There  

blog post

Some writers use an analytical approach for their business blog posts. Someone who is an expert in areas like manufacturing, finances, or management often has plenty of topics to write about, including those that will interest the public. The average shopper does not understand much about current business trends, financial forecasting, consumer interests, and concerns, and other topics, so the writer enlightens them.

Business blogs help to promote companies. Find your inner persuader by contacting On the Verge Writing today.

blog content writing
Aug 25

How Do I Make Sure I Have Regular Content for My Blog?

By Sylvia LeRahl | Uncategorized

Blog content writing is an excellent way to share fresh, new content with an audience. It’s also a great way to connect with new followers. Many companies are realizing the value of blogs and are including a blog content writing section on their corporate websites. It’s also helpful for search engine optimization strategies. However, it’s important to make sure that you provide content on a consistent basis. If you skip this step, it’ll be easy to lose engagement. Consistency is one of the main components that serves as a pitfall for many content creators. To avoid falling off the wagon, consider these four tips to help you regularly produce.

Make a Long List of Potential Topics.

Sit down and make a list of topics you would like to cover on the blog. Take time to brainstorm and get creative with your ideas. You can consider creating a diagram to help you flush out ideas. Once you create the list, go back and break down each topic into subtopics. You’d be surprised by how many ideas you can come up with.

Decide How Often You’d Like to Post Content

When you’re creating content, you must consider the consistency. If you know that you won’t be able to produce content on a daily basis, do not present your blog as a daily read. Try not to post less than once a week. Understand that it’s perfectly fine to produce once or twice a week and still gain traction.

Craft a Blog Content Writing Calendar

One of the best ways to express your consistency is by sharing your content at a particular time. If you are committed to producing blog content writing once or twice a week, publicize the day and time that you will do that. If readers know to expect your content on Tuesday mornings at 11 a.m., then place that date on your blog content writing calendar. Creating a content calendar that is realistic with your schedule is essential for you. If you choose to do Monday, Wednesday, and Friday at 5 pm, put that on your schedule and stick to it.

Create a Production Schedule

While you can set the dates and put them in your calendar, you need to make sure that you set aside time to produce the content. A great way to tackle this project involves setting aside one day for production. Create content in batches. When you do it in advance, you don’t have to worry about falling behind with your content.

As you become consistent with the process, you’ll find that things will get easier over time. Before you know it, you’ll be a content-creating machine. You’ll also be able to develop a following of people who appreciate the content and engage with your company.

influencer marketing
Aug 24

A Step By Step Guide To Influencer Marketing

By Sylvia LeRahl | Uncategorized

With the creation of social media platforms such as YouTube, Instagram, and Facebook, people have turned away from traditional sources of influence and information. The masses turn to people who have been dubbed as “influencers.” An influencer is someone who has the ability to sway the purchasing decisions of a large group of people because of their perceived authority in some area. Here is a step by step guide to influencer marketing.

Find a Target Audience

The whole merit behind influencer marketing is predicated on the concept of a targeted audience. Before marketing to this selected group of people, companies must conduct market research to determine their ideal avatar. Target audiences should normally be comprised of a company’s ideal customer. ‘Ideal’ customer simply refers to a customer from the main target demographic for which a company serves or produces products for. Market research must then be conducted to find a larger group of ideal customers to be targeted.

Finding an Influencer

Once a target audience has been identified, efforts should turn to finding a pertinent influencer. While there are several people with influence, it is critical to find one that is relevant to the company’s particular niche. For example, Tiger Woods would be a poor influencer for Louisville Slugger, a well-known provider of baseball bats. Although Woods is an influencer, he is only relevant in the golf world. Companies should begin researching what influencers are relevant among their target audience. Who does this group of people listen to and take advice from? These are the kinds of questions to ask when searching for a relevant influencer.

Developing a Strategy for Influencer Marketing

After determining a target audience and a suitable influencer, its time to develop a strategy. Putting a relevant service or product in front of a targeted audience isn’t enough to make a conversion. As with all forms of advertising and marketing, there needs to be a relevant strategy. Influencers are there to help bridge the gap between a company and their target audience. They can’t make the sale for the company. That job still remains with the business.

Once You Have An Influencer…

After a business has chosen an influencer, there are a few things that must be done in order to keep the relationship with the influencer and the promotion of the products legal. The Federal Trade Commission has specific rules for companies working with influencers, and most of them relate to making sure that all paid endorsements are made clear and conspicuous. Help your influencers meet FTC compliance by making sure that all hashtags, disclosures, and other promotional content are done the right way.

Influencer marketing is becoming one of the most popular tools that businesses can use to effectively connect with a large audience of people. This marketing change is due in part to the different methods of entertainment that have developed with recent technological changes. With the power of influencer marketing, your business can reach members of its target audience that might have otherwise remained out of reach.

blog
Jul 19

Must-Have Content Pieces for a High-Traffic Blog

By Sylvia LeRahl | Blog

In order to build a successful blog, it’s essential that you continuously publish great content. But it’s also important that you publish different types of content to keep your audience engaged. If you just post the same kind of content over and over, your readers will start to predict what you’ll post and may lose interest. Publishing a variety of content appeals to different types of people, as some may prefer visually-oriented content over text-based content.

Here are some of the must-have content pieces you need for a high traffic blog:

How-to Guides and Tutorials

This is the most basic kind of content but also the most proven. Most people naturally go online to look for how to information. That’s why providing your readers with how to content about your topic is a great way to keep them engaged and attract new visitors to your blog.

The key to making great how-to guides is to start by figuring out what kind of information your audience often searches for. But don’t limit yourself to these topics. Come up with how to information that’s related to what your readers are interested in but may not necessarily be on the top of their heads. Need examples? Look no further:

Listicles

The listicle is another type of popular content that people can’t get enough of. The reason why content based on a “top list of x” appeals to readers and attracts visitors is that it gets to the point. It offers value, presents it in an orderly fashion, and is concise.

You can see many examples of top lists done by businesses and prominent publications:

Reviews

People are always looking for a trusted authority or expert to help guide their purchase decisions. That’s why reviews are still one of the most popular forms of content you can publish on your blog. To make reviews work, you have to make sure that it is unbiased analysis or it will look like a blatant attempt to make a quick buck off your recommendations.

There are different types of reviews you can do as well. You can simply create an in-depth review of one product or do a compare and comparison review for similar products. If you want to take it further, you can do case studies on various products or services to provide closer details into whatever you are reviewing. Instructions on that can be found here:

Infographics

One of the most engaging types of content you can create is infographics. An infographic is a visual-based content that presents text content with visual cues, helpful graphics, and enhanced typography. This makes this types of content easy to follow, consume, and understand. It also appeals to the instant gratification part of people’s brains because they can extra value out of it very quickly.

Because infographics are visually attractive, they tend to get passed around a lot. So if you put in the time to create an infographic that’s relevant, interesting and valuable to readers, you’ll tend to receive a lot of traffic from your efforts. Of course, you can always curate infographics from other content creators if you don’t have the time create your own. Here is a sampling of infographics to inspire you:

Videos

According to Hubspot, more social media users are starting to prefer video content over traditional content. Videos are valuable to many people that prefer watching and listening to content over reading it. It’s also a form of content that can be easily distributed to popular videos sites.

Another great thing about video content is that videos tend to rank well in the search engines. If you put in the effort of optimizing your videos (providing captioning, creating a great title, writing great descriptions, including relevant keywords, etc.), you’ll start to bring in traffic from Google as well as video sites like YouTube and Vimeo.

Podcast Blog

While creating a podcast may not be appropriate for every blogger, it can be a great way to keep your audience engaged and help others discover your blog. Many bloggers aren’t aware of why podcasts can really help promote their blog. They think that it’s simply content in an audio format.

In reality, this type of content works because new podcasts are updated instantly to subscribers. Many of the subscribers are also listening to your content while they’re driving or engaged in some other activity. As a result, you get the undivided attention of the listeners. There’s no radio commercials, competing videos, or sites that are a click away.

Resource Guides

People are always looking for helpful resource guides that get to the point. For example, a quick checklist of the things you need before going to the airport may help many first time travelers. It is especially helpful if these resource guides can be downloaded on to their computer via a PDF file.

Think about what your audience may want a resource guide for. It may be a list of camping gear they’ll need for their next outing, or a cheat sheet that helps them save time or money pertaining to their upcoming plans. These types of content always tend to attract traffic because people always refer others to them.

Google My Business

Although articles posted to Google My Business don’t go on your blog, these are essential posts for making sure your business blog gets the traffic you’re looking for, and if you’re not using it, you’re missing out. Google My Business posts are the most efficient way to tell your target audience about new locations, special promotions, new products, etc. GMB posts can include photos, videos, links, and up to 300 words of text, so make it compelling. That way when your business comes up in any of Google’s apps, people can see your posts and click right to your site.

This list is just a snippet of the content you can create to build and maintain a high traffic blog. Of course, this is far from the different types of content you can publish. The idea here is to keep your audience engaged by publishing different types of content. Don’t be afraid to experiment either. You’ll be surprised at how much better certain types of content perform over traditional content. If you have any more questions about creating content for your business, feel free to contact On The Verge Writing.