Are You Taking Responsibility?
This one is fairly straightforward. Are you taking responsibility in business for both the good and the bad? What does that even mean? That’s our topic for discussion today.
Let Me Tell You a Story
President Harry Truman had a sign on his desk that said “The buck stops here”. What he meant by that was, as President, he did not have the option to pass the buck when it came to mistakes or failure. He was the boss and the buck stopped right there. “What does that have to do with my business?” I can hear you say that pretty clearly.
That’s pretty smart advice for any business owner who wants to be more successful. When it comes to the results of decisions you make, don’t pass the buck.
Everyone is happy to take credit for a successful outcome; as well they should if they were directly responsible for that success. That’s the easy part. The hard part is owning up to your own mistakes.
Now This is The Hard Part – The Guilt
Taking responsibility in business means it’s up to you. There is somewhat of an inclination to try and blame someone or something else for a negative outcome. The most successful people fight that inclination and accept the blame for their mistakes as readily as they accept congratulations for their successes.
They do so because they realize that being the captain of the ship means that all decisions start and end with you. Am I right? Don’t be that one business owner that suffers from guilt.
Making Decisions About Responsibility
If you happen to make a bad decision then you own that fact, tighten your belt, and move forward armed with the knowledge to never repeat that mistake again. This is a part of the process of growth. It is a process that demonstrates that the greatest opportunity arises from failure.
By avoiding the repercussions of that failure, you also avoid the opportunity to grow as a leader and learn from your own mistakes. In other words, you condemn yourself to make that same mistake over and over. Yikes!
So, if and when you are faced with a bad business situation of your own making, don’t pass the buck.
The buck stops with you. Accept that and move on.
Success Requires Persistence
Today let’s talk about persistence and whether or not success requires persistence. For starters, how many old sayings, aphorisms, and clichés are there about persistence? The early bird gets the worm. Slow and steady wins the race. If at first, you don’t succeed, try again. If life gives you lemons make lemonade. The list goes on and on. Right?
The reason that there are so many old sayings about persistence is twofold: First, it’s a really important element in success and second, it an element of success that gives a lot of people a lot of trouble.
The Importance of Success
Something that’s as important and troublesome as persistence deserves a lot of clichéd sayings and a lot of attention. Are you persistent? Meaning = do you never give up?
The problem with the road to success is that many people only picture the destination, not the journey.
When they do this, they not only fail to see that true success is not a destination (it’s a lifelong process) but they also fail to see the potential problems that routinely occur when striving for success.
The Prepared Person Has Persistence
Are you prepared? Or are you the person who is so unprepared that you get stopped dead in your tracks?
And in your confusion, you forget where you’re going and why? Are you going backward or forward toward success?
When you are prepared for and anticipate the setbacks that can and will happen on the journey to success, you are ready to repair, rethink and reengage.
Persistence is a Two Way Street
The persistent person understands that failure is a temporary condition that affects everyone at one time or another before they reach their goal. They also understand that failure and setbacks teach powerful lessons that ultimately make you stronger.
As Gandhi said, strength does not come through winning. Instead, strength comes through failure. When you struggle and decide not to quit, that is strength.
It is also persistent and points to why every successful business owner understands that setbacks are opportunities in disguise.
Now here’s an opportunity for you. I would love to help you find success in your business. I’m the type of person that doesn’t like other people to struggle unnecessarily. So, if you’re looking for help, please reach out to me and let me help you discover how persistence can help you and your business.
Complete the form below and let’s take action.
The Risk-Taking Business Owner
We’ve all heard the old saying “nothing ventured, nothing gained”. Like most old sayings, there’s a strong element of truth in those words. Are you a risk-taking business owner? Maybe you are and you don’t even know that you are one. Simple to find out though, take a look at this definition.
Definition of risk-taking: the act or fact of doing something that involves danger or risk in order to achieve a goal Starting a business always involves some risk-taking.
At the risk of following one old saying with another, without risk, there is not, and cannot be any reward. There is an element of chance inherent in every venture and unless that chance is recognized and faced, the venture will never become reality.
A Natural Risk-Taker
There are people who are natural risk-takers, as well as people who are very risk-averse. Do you find that to be true? The key to success when it comes to risk-taking is understanding what type of person you are. Take this quiz here ⇒ Quiz and see how you fare.
How does this personality trait affect your business when it comes to dealing with risk? It is important to keep in mind that the secret of success when it comes to business risk is mitigating potential damage in favor of potential gain.
Is it a Risk or a Danger?
Therefore, neither type of risk personality, in and of itself, provides an advantage over the other when it comes to risk management. A risk-taker can just as easily overreach themselves as a risk-averse person can underreach themselves. Interesting yes?
When faced with a situation that offers reward and risk, the key is to coolly and impartially assess the potential positive and negative outcomes. And then decide accordingly. No danger there right?
Being a Successful Business Owner
Successful business owners are sometimes seen as risk-takers simply because they understand the danger in a situation better than anyone else involved. So, while it appears that they are courting disaster, the reality is that the risks involved have been managed. This allows them to control negative consequences.
The successful business owner who takes a risk is very much like a professional tightrope walker. To the observer, it looks death-defying and, perhaps, frightening. To the performer, it is simply another day at the office. Their skill, training, and preparation sufficiently offset the inherent risk to make the feat only appear to be remarkably dangerous. What do you think?
In your own business, don’t be afraid of risk but, at the same time, don’t take the risk lightly. Weigh your options carefully and, when you arrive at a prudent decision, move forward with confidence.
And speaking of confidence, I have a great course on confidence.
You can access it right here ⇒ The Lady Boss Confidence Course
Planning Your Content
Continuing on with our Content Marketing Plan, this time we are discussing how to PLAN your content. One thing that’s very important, if you plan to leverage the power of audio, video, and text, is to have a comprehensive content marketing plan.
Here’s a little checklist that might help you do that.
Setting Your Goals
All your content creation should have a purpose and that purpose should not only benefit your readers but benefit your business as well.
Some purposes might be:
- Search engine traffic
- Word of mouth and viral effect
- Pre-selling and warming up the audience to a product
- Establishing credibility and authority
- Reader satisfaction
- Boosting your opt-in list subscribers
- Boosting customer relationships
- Selling your products
Just remember, the goal or purpose of each content piece is aligned with your overall marketing strategy. This may also help you decide whether content should be in audio, video, or text format. For example, if your goal is to boost customer relationships, you might choose a video of yourself to do that.
When you do your content marketing plan, make sure your content includes a call to action that supports your goal. For example, “For more information about how to manage debt, grab our free report 12 Steps to Eliminate Debt in 12 Months.” – tell them what you want them to do next.
Carving out time for research is very important. From brainstorming topic ideas to finding supporting information for those topics, there is plenty to be done. You also want to research potential places to distribute your content as well.
Here are some things that will make your research easier:
- Keep a list of content ideas throughout the month.
- Use the following to generate content ideas/topics:
- Social networking
- Keyword research tools
- Blog comments
- Client interaction
Review the analytics and results of last month’s content and evaluate which pieces generated the most interest or results. Know which pieces your audience responded to and use that information to create content topic ideas for this month.
While you’re researching topics, take note of interesting articles, statistics, and other items you might reference later as you’re creating your content.
Keep your eye out for places where you might publish your content. Connect with other website owners who might publish for you. Connect with them by subscribing to their sites, on Facebook, Twitter, and more.
Creation and Distribution
Here are some things to plan and keep in mind, so your content gets out there to your audience.
- How much content will you need? Will you write it all yourself, hire a writer, or use PLR? If you’re using a writer, ensure they have all the information they need well ahead of time, so they can meet your deadline.
- Have you created your content publishing schedule? Plan ahead, so that you can match content topics with products you’ll be promoting. Decide where each piece will be published and which pieces will be published in multiple places.
- Guest blog
- Social networking page
- Article marketing site
- Video sharing website (ex. YouTube)
- Audio sharing website (ex. iTunes)
The best way to make the most of your monthly content is to find ways to reuse it and repurpose it. However, when creating your repurposing strategy make sure that you’re still focusing on your goals. Each repurposed or reused piece of content still needs to serve a purpose and support a goal.
- You’ve created a plan to reuse or repurpose some or all of your content. For example, an article published on your blog can be rewritten and published on an article marketing site. Or an article that resonated with your readers, could be made more visual and viral by turning it into a video.
- Each piece of content that is repurposed or reused content has a goal/purpose. You should always keep benefiting your business (and your audience, of course) in mind.
It may seem overwhelming to have to plan all this content in a variety of mediums, but over time you’ll learn what your audience responds to and where you should focus your efforts.
And remember, quality is more important than volume, so focus on delivering quality.
This ends this series on Content Planning. Hope you enjoyed it and found it useful.
The Dos and Don’ts of Audio and Video
Part 3 in the series of a content marketing plan. In case you missed Part 1 or Part 2 use the links provided to catch up in the series.
Using audio and video on your site can greatly enhance your visitors’ experience. It gives them alternative ways to receive information and makes your site more interesting. But it is important not to push these mediums on your visitors, because it may be a turnoff for some.
Here are some things to look out for:
- Try to avoid using audio or video that automatically starts when a visitor arrives at your site. Most people want the power to choose when they watch a video or listen to audio on the web, and if that is taken away, it could leave a bad taste in their mouths.
- If you’re embedding videos, don’t put too many on any one page. This can cause slow load times, and possibly even browser crashes for users who do not have the fastest connections or the newest computers.
- Don’t take a “one size fits all” approach. If you’re streaming audio or video, offer options for those with slower connections alongside the standard options. You can provide written summaries for recorded content, for example.
- Don’t forget to seek input from your website’s visitors. If you’re considering audio or video but have not implemented them yet, consider doing a user survey to find out how they would like to see it used. If you are already utilizing audio and video, ask them if they feel you are using it in the best way possible. You’re providing these things for the benefit of your users, so it’s crucial to make sure that they are benefiting from them.
It’s important not to alienate anyone through your use of audio and video. The idea is to give your users more options, not to make things more complex or decrease usability.
Why Bother With Text When You Can Use Audio and Video?
With all of the possibilities that audio and video have to offer, one might think that plain old text would be outdated. But even though these things add a great deal to the Internet, there still is, and probably always will be, an important place for the written word.
The Internet was founded on text. And while text is no longer the only thing you can find online, it is still what the Internet is based on. It’s largely what the search engines use to determine whether a page is relevant for a given keyword, and it’s often what people want when they are seeking information that they can share easily.
Text is currently the only medium that allows for easy searching. This is not only important to the search engines, but also for the average user. This is starting to change as technology advances, but currently, you can’t type in a search term and skip to each instance of it on an online video or audio recording. But if you’re on a web page and need to find a specific word or words, you can simply use your browser’s search function to go directly to it.
It’s also important to consider that there are people who use text-only browsers to access the Internet. Those who are blind often use browsers that read the text on a page aloud, and if there is not sufficient text to describe what the page is about, they may seek information elsewhere. In addition to this, some users do not have sound cards or speakers, rendering audio useless and video usable but silent.
There are many things online that need to be presented as text. Doing them any other way just doesn’t make sense. For example, you probably wouldn’t want to access your bank account information as an audio file. And you might not benefit very much from your digital camera user guide being presented in video form, although videos showing specific picture taking and maintenance techniques might be helpful.
Text is still an important part of any web page. Audio and video can great assets to your website, but in most cases, they shouldn’t completely replace your text. Text is still favored by many Internet users, and it gives the search engines more to go on when they index your site.
Text Can Be Portable in your Content Marketing Plan
Online audio and video are becoming easier and easier to take wherever you go. They can be downloaded to watch later on your computer, or you can put them on portable audio and video players. But text doesn’t have to be bound to the Internet or computer screen either.
When people find information that is valuable to them online, they often want to save a copy of it for later reference. They can bookmark the web page, but subsequent changes may move or eliminate the information they want. They can save the page in question to their hard drives, but few people do. Making it easy for your site visitors to take your words with them is good for business. Here are some ways to accomplish that:
- Offer printer-friendly versions of popular pages. Your site design may cause pages to print out poorly, especially if you use frames. Making it easy for users to print pages that look like they should allow them to easily archive information for future reference.
- Consider putting certain information in PDF format. This is the file format that is often used for ebooks and brochures, and it provides easy readability. It prints out nicely if your users want a hard copy. And there are now portable ebook readers on the market that allow one to save his ebooks and other PDF files and take them with him wherever he goes.
- Provide options for mobile web users. It is worthwhile to set up mobile web pages and for, some businesses, text alert systems. If your website offers up-to-date information such as news, weather, or account information, your users could benefit from mobile options.
The many recent innovations that utilize text indicate that it is still a medium that should not be ignored. While it may not have the potential for the personality of audio or be as visually stimulating as video, it is easy to transfer and doesn’t require any special software to use.
Audio and Video Should Complement Text, Not Replace It
One of the most important things to realize about audio and video is that at this point, they often don’t translate into money as quickly as text can. Utilizing audio and video is more about making a name for yourself and building your brand than immediate monetary gratification. It helps generate traffic to your website and boosts your business’s image.
Of course, there are exceptions. Popular videos participating in the ad revenue sharing program with YouTube can earn some decent money. YouTube is also always developing their technology for embedding links and other more interactive elements into videos.
Besides, you may find using video on a sales page increases your conversions and it can work as very well in this regard. So, you should think about this when you’re creating content for your market planning.
But overall, text is so vitally important on any website. Audio and video can enhance a website or sales letter, and they can go a long way toward convincing a visitor to become a customer or client. But ultimately, it is usually text that seals the deal. At the very least, text is the most effective way to instruct visitors on how to order or sign up.
Audio, video, and text can work together to make your website nice to look at and listen to, as well as highly functional. Each medium appeals to visitors in its unique way. Taking advantage of the multimedia opportunities available online can boost your site’s popularity while making it more useful.
Planning your content is up next in this series of Content Marketing Plan so stay tuned. You’re NOT going to want to miss it!