Author Archives | Caitlynn Cush

The Ultimate Email Checklist [Infographic]

We’ve all been there. Spending precious time drafting and re-drafting an email that will be blasted to hundreds if not thousands of subscribers, only to realize a blaring spelling or grammatical error right after you have hit that blast button.  <facepalms>

Wouldn’t it be nice to have a checklist of sorts to help you avoid the most common of mistakes? The people at Moosend felt the very same way, so they put together this handy dandy checklist below.

What are some items you might add to the already awesome checklist that have worked for you?  We would love to hear all about it in the comments below.

Happy emailing!

newsletter check infographic

Posted in Affiliate Marketing, Email Marketing0 Comments

Instagram to Add Shopping Function to Stories

Hold on to your chair! Buckle up buttercup! It’s about to get real…

Ha! No seriously.  If branding yourself to the millennial crowd via Instagram is your thing, then have we got the news for you.

Instagram is expanding its Shopping function beyond the main feed into its Stories channel. This will allow businesses to tag products in their time-sensitive content, thus enabling consumers to seamlessly shop directly from these posts.

Game changer, for sure.

“Instagram isn’t just a place of inspiration, it’s also a place of action, and we know that inspiration can come from anywhere,” said an Instagram spokesperson. “From Adidas and Aritzia to Louis Vuitton, people have been able to shop from their favourite brands around the world, and now you can shop these businesses in Instagram Stories.”

Instagram Stories are accessed by 300 million or so users each and every day. The channel has become increasingly important for marketers looking to promote products to their consumers.

Shopping on Instagram has allowed us to differentiate between the posts that get a lot of likes vs actually driving sales,” said Louise McCabe, spokesperson for luxury retail platform SilkFred. “It has helped us to identify the products that get the most taps to shop, so that we can focus more on those products and drive overall revenue from Instagram.”

 

 

 

 

 

Posted in Social Media Marketing0 Comments

6 Hacks That Are a Must for Solopreneurs

You are living the American dream, or so it seems.  However, even with all the advantages that come with being a solopreneur the fact still remains that you are a one person company most likely doing the work of five or more.

There is no one to remind you of appointments, personally answer your calls, manage your sales leads or customer service, help with taxes, or keep your accounts up to date.  Of course, there are numerous geeky technological tools that is there to ease the sting, but which ones are the best?

Below you will find a list of handpicked tools that seem to ease the pain of being a one man/woman do it all.

  1. 1Password  – not only can  you up your security measures with two-factor authentication making your passwords even that much more secure, but this password generator keeps everything stored for you in a user-friendly easy to use spot that seamlessly syncs between your browser and your other mobile devices.  1Password also makes it easy to pick and choose which passwords you might want to share with clients or even family members.

  2. Dropbox –  What would happen if your hard-drives were to be damaged in an accident or natural disaster?  Would you be able to recover from lost data and time?  You really need an off-site backup system in order to safeguard yourself against that kind of vulnerability.  An automatic backup is by far the easiest.   I’ve personally used Dropbox for years, and though I’ve never had a disastrous hard drive failure of any kind, I’ve found it to be super useful.  I’m able to grab files whenever needed, from whatever device I happen to be using at the time.   They also make file sharing a headache of the past.  A quick copy and and past of the file or folder url and you have now shared that huge data hungry document with your client with ease.

  3. Rescue Time – We have all had those days where at the end it feels as if you haven’t accomplished anything at all on the long list of “to-do’s”  but where or what exactly sucked up all our time?   Rescue Time can help you by tracking the activity on your computer and letting you know where your time is spent. Heck, it could be that you just lack self-discipline and need to get your eyes off of Facebook for those two hours that you could have been being productive.  If this is the case you can set it to block those distracting sites for certain periods of time.  Look at it as a self-preservation technique or your very own Net Nanny.

  4. Shake – Agreements, contracts, proposals, acckkk!   Sometimes it’s hard to know exactly where to start in creating a simple but legally binding agreement.  This mobile app will help with that.  It’s a quick and easy way to create contracts for freelance jobs, but you can also use it to create NDA’s, leases, loans, and sales.  It’s like having a contract attorney (well a cheap one) at your fingertips.

  5. Shoeboxed – Paper, receipts, business cards, forms, books = unnecessary clutter on my desk.  There were days in the past where I simply wanted to take it all and trash it in one swift sweep of my arm over the top of my desk.  Well that day, I’m happy to say, has come and gone thanks to Shoeboxed.  This gem of a tool let’s you easily scan, take pictures using your mobile device, or even send them via snail mail anything and everything that you would like to save but not necessarily keep on your desk or in a drawer.

  6. 17hats – This wondrous time saver combines many of the apps you are likely using into a single flawless interface.  It’s creators have built 17hats with the solopreneur in mind.  They have given us a suite of functions to from from sales leads to research and information gathering via an online questionnaire on to a proposal to hand off to your potential client.  They don’t stop there though the ball continues rolling downhill to contract, invoicing and finally payment.  It’s like a fortune 500 company CRM system but designed for the single DIY’er.  It also doesn’t carry the big fortune 500 company price tag.   For only $13 a month (two year plan) you are given unlimited everything!

 

Bonus Productivity Hacks

  1. Have clearly defined hours of business – Biggest hurdle for most solopreneurs or work at home freelancers in general, is defining their work hours.  True one of the pluses of working from home or for yourself is the ability to make your own hours.  However, thats where many of us tend to fall down.  Make a schedule for work and stick to it.  View your business work schedule just as you would if you were punching a clock.  If you have to take time off for a personal commitment then you need to also set aside time to make the time missed up.  In the same respect you also need to learn to “shut off.”  Just because we live in a 24 hour society doesn’t mean that you need to be available 24/7 to answer that client’s call.

  2. Be picky about who you say yes to – Most of us have a deep need to be liked and in business being liked normally equates to added income.  As a solopreneur you have to learn that it’s simply impossible to be able to say yes to every client that crosses your path.

  3. Outsource when possible – Delegate tasks to freelancers when it all possible.  The sooner you realize that rome wasn’t built in a day or by one single person, the quicker you will ultimately get to your goals.

  4. Schedule personal time including vacations – Burnout happens and often!  Take a break, go on a family vacation, recharge those batteries.  In the end your creativity and productivity will be thanking you.

  5. Use the above productivity tools!

Posted in Affiliate Marketing, Blogging, CPA Marketing, ecommerce, Home Business, Mobile Marketing, Productivity, Social Media Marketing0 Comments

The Periodic Table Of Email Deliverabilty [Infographic]

I don’t know about all of you, but if I see another article regarding when the best time to schedule that next email campaign… I’m probably gonna scream.  Ok, maybe I won’t actually scream, but I’ll definitely give an aggressive eye-roll.

The folks over at Moosend actually did put together a pretty stellar, research driven plan that seems easy enough to follow.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Not only is the “Deliverability Score” they have put together straight forward and simple, but they also took the time to go into further detail of many other key points surrounding this heavily discussed subject.

Posted in Affiliate Marketing, CPA Marketing, Email Marketing0 Comments

How To Approach People at Networking Events

You have heard this a million times, if not more, “One of the key strategies for every entrepreneur is to build, maintain, and nurture a network.”  For many this comes naturally. The gift of gab some would say.

Although approaching others at a networking event, should be more than just about gabbing. You should have a clear and concise plan for how to work the room.

With Affiliate Summit East 2018 coming up in just a few months, it’s important to have all your i’s dotted and t’s crossed so to speak when it comes to what your overall strategy is regarding networking the event.

To make the most out of your time at Adtech, or any other networking event, be sure to employ the following tips:

Have a topic of conversation ready.

No! We are not saying to have this weird candy bar in your pocket, ready to share.  We are just saying that it’s best to avoid the interview setting, which is what happens when the conversation goes a something like this:

You: “So what do you do?”

Them:  “I do this.”

Them: “What do you do?”

That is more on the lines of fact sharing, not an insight into what the other person might have to offer you intellectually.  It’s certainly not connecting or networking.

Instead, have a clear topic of conversation in mind before approaching someone.

Start with a handshake.

The type of handshake you extend to someone has the ability to speak volumes about you and your intentions.  When approaching someone new at a networking event, start off on the right foot (er hand) with a firm handshake and unwavering eye contact.  Accompany both with a welcoming smile. This type of nonverbal communication will help you to build a good rapport before word one is even uttered.

Make yourself interesting.

You should strive to memorable when you are meeting new people, and one of the best ways to accomplish this is by coming off as interesting.  Possibly tell a story as it relates to the conversation, charm them with your wit, and of course have plenty of business cards on hand to leave behind with people that  you have met.

Win the name game.

Personally I’m horrible with names.  I might very well forget my own someday.  However, when it comes to business contacts remembering names is an essential skill to the art of conversations.

When others hear you repeat their name, it gives them a sense of connection to you and of course the conversation.  They are also left with the impression that they felt important to you. Be careful though not to overkill the name dropping, because that can quickly come off as creepy.  It often helps me to repeat their name silently to myself as if to anchor it into my memory bank.

At the end of the conversation after they are out of view, write their name on the back of their business card in your own handwriting and add a little note that relates to the conversation and/or their business.  This will hopefully help to jog your member about who they are when you study your cards later.

Show genuine interest.

Speaking of business cards, many marketers I’ve come in contact with over the years at the networking events use a popular but ineffective approach to networking.  Instead of using the opportunity to build relationships, they just go around collecting and handing out a many business cards as they can.

To effectively form professional connections, you should approach everyone with genuine interest in their business, interests, thoughts, and niche.

When conversating attempt to as open-ended question to both show sincerity and continue to keep the discussion flowing.

End the conversation with grace.

The last moments of a conversation will define how people remember you.  Try to make the ending of the meeting solid and memorable, instead of being strangely abrupt which could be construed as rude.

Take a moment to make the final eye contact with the person, so that it doesn’t seem as you are running away.

Networking events are a fabulous way to market yourself and your business. Take this valuable opportunity to develop new relationships.  

Posted in Affiliate Marketing, Events, Networking0 Comments

Twitter made some changes to their battle against internet ‘trolls’

Twitter Inc  made some significant changes to their strategy for fighting internet “trolls” on Tuesday.  Twitter will begin using a wider range of key points to rank tweets in conversations and searches, hiding even more replies that are likely to be abusive. The company is turning to greater automation, saying its software will start automatically demoting response posts that it determines are likely to disrupt users’ conversations.

Twitter’s rules already prohibit abuse, and it can suspend or block offenders once someone reports them. Users can also mute people they find offensive.  Chief Executive Jack Dorsey said Twitter now would try to find problematic accounts by examining behavior such as how frequently people tweet about accounts that do not follow them or whether they have confirmed their email address.

“We want to take the burden of the work off the people receiving the abuse or the harassment,” Dorsey said in a briefing with reporters. Past efforts to fight abuse “felt like Whac-A-Mole,” he added.The new algorithm will roll out over the next week.

Posted in CPA Marketing0 Comments

Follow the Influencer to Follow the Money [Infographic]

Influencer marketing is on the rise. With 39% of marketers planning to increase their influencer marketing budget in 2018, and 19% planning to spend over $100k per program, the growth of this industry simply can’t be ignored.  The infographic below, created by St. Joseph Communictions, outlines the industry’s growth over the next few years.

Check out the informative infographic and let us know what you think in the comments below.

Posted in Affiliate Marketing, Influencer Marketing0 Comments

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