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content strategy

Navigating AI in Content Creation for Small Businesses

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In a time when artificial intelligence (AI) is changing the way we do content marketing, small business owners stand at a crossroads. How do we harness this technology without losing the personal touch that defines our brands? And how do we continue to stand out … Keep reading…

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Evergreen Content Scheduling

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I used to do production scheduling for batches of bleach in a chemical plant. Well, lots more than bleach but that’s what I always smelled like after work according to my boyfriend at the time. Fast forward 30 years and the scheduling I do now … Keep reading…

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Features vs Benefits in Small Business Marketing

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We can get so caught up in all the details of what we do that it’s often hard to see our businesses from the outside as customers and potential customers. It’s that “too much knowledge” thing. Our brains naturally fill in blanks to create a … Keep reading…

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Interesting or Useful? Aim for Both

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Many years ago when I started this blog, I focused a lot on email newsletters. I used to say that a newsletter must be interesting or useful… and both are what you’re aiming for. I was saying that before ‘content’ became a thing but, of … Keep reading…

Talking to More Than One Market? There’s a Strategy for That

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It can be hard enough to figure out a marketing strategy for one target market, let alone two or more. Yet it’s absolutely worthwhile to create content as specific to your contacts’ interests as possible. Because if you are trying to satisfy everyone, no one … Keep reading…

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Is Your Website Social-Media-Sharing-Friendly?

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You come across some really great information that you want to share on your LinkedIn feed (or Facebook, Twitter…). You write the post with care, telling your followers why they should check it out. You paste in the website URL and… ugh. There’s no image. … Keep reading…

Answers to Email Marketing Strategy Questions

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Over 13 years of specializing in email newsletters, I’ve been asked a lot of different questions. And I’m pretty sure you’ll find answers to most of them here on my blog. But of course, nothing stays the same for long when it comes to marketing. … Keep reading…

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Perseverance. Persistence. Patience. Repetition. Determination!

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When Ann Perry first got in touch to ask if I could help her with ActiveCampaign, I had no clue what I was in for. But I was hooked right away because she had just under 5000 email subscribers and almost 20K YouTube subscribers. One … Keep reading…

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To Drip, or Not… What is the Goal?

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If you’re new to the lead magnet game, you may be confused… and rightfully so. There’s a lot of info and advice out there, much of it is conflicting. This article comes nowhere close to covering the whole gamut of options but my goal is … Keep reading…

Newsletter, Blog, Promotion, Advertisement, Spam – An Email by Any Other Name

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When you scan your inbox each morning, how do you decide what to open, what to delete, or what to leave for later reading? People choose to open emails based roughly 50% on the subject line and 50% on recognizing the sender’s name. That’s a rough … Keep reading…

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Always Showing Up

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One night last week I dreamed that Mary Jane Copps and I co-authored a best-selling book called “Always Showing Up”. It was about the importance of being seen often and always bringing value to clients, potential clients and referrers – the commitment to building relationships … Keep reading…

What are You Curious About? That’s Your Marketing Content!

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My friend Anita Kirkbride has been digging deep into all the social media platforms for years and regularly shares updates on changes and new developments. Another friend Alison Knott enjoys reading about stats, trends and best practices, and shares interesting tidbits in her monthly newsletter … Keep reading…

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I Want to Start a Newsletter for My Small Business – Where Do I Start?

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It’s easy to get hamstrung by what you don’t know… and then do nothing at all. If starting an email newsletter for your small business has been on your to-do list for a while, here’s the perfect place to start. Below I’ve gathered my best … Keep reading…

What Are Your Small Business Blogging Goals?

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If your answer to the title of this post is “increase sales”, you’ve got that part right. But you should also realize that there’s no direct path from one to the other. You don’t start a blog and immediately make more sales – although I … Keep reading…

Try a Newsletter Full of Tidbits

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Tidbit is defined as “a small and particularly interesting item of gossip or information.” (Just in case you’re Canadian and were thinking about chocolate Timbits.) The most successful newsletters I’ve seen are full of tidbits. A tidbit is short, delightful and easily digested (just like … Keep reading…

What Are You NOT?

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Every small business owner struggles with their messaging from time to time and this is especially true when developing content for a new or refreshed website. I – and you – can sit and make a long list of words and phrases that describe the … Keep reading…

BE the Rabbit Hole

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You know when you’ve been online for a while – scrolling, reading, tapping – and then realize the time? We may feel good (because we learned something), bad (because something pushed a hot button), or indifferent (what level on HayDay?). Regardless, we still think of … Keep reading…

Email Newsletters – Develop Your Strategy First

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The process of starting an email newsletter for your small business involves focusing on these aspects: strategy, tactics and tools. It makes sense to approach them in a logical order from high-level thinking through to detailed work. Strategy First This is where you consider that your … Keep reading…

Pinpoint Your Unique Content Marketing Opportunity – An Example

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If you read Pinpoint Your Unique Content Marketing Opportunity last month and are still stuck, this article may offer some hope. First, if you are sitting at your desk alone, new ideas may not come to you easily. This process requires brainstorming – and more than … Keep reading…

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Find Marketing Opportunities in Your Own Content

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Marketing analytics can be confusing. You need to learn how to use the software to get data. Then you need to figure out what information you want from the data. Then you need to figure out what actions to take now that you’re wiser. Here’s … Keep reading…

Pinpoint Your Unique Content Marketing Opportunity

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If you think writing blog posts about what you do is your best content option, you might be sorely mistaken. The popular approach to content marketing usually includes some combination of blogging (podcasting, video, etc) + email + social media. (I love that equation!) The … Keep reading…

3 Ways Having a Social Media Strategy Will Save You Time

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Have you ever noticed how being overwhelmed by something tends to make it suck the time right out of your day? The more overwhelmed you feel, the longer it takes to get it done? All entrepreneurs get that feeling about something and many have learned … Keep reading…

How to Share Yourself Through Your Content

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Content marketing strategy can be complicated but this is a good place to start. Are you a learner? Share your learning. Are you a teacher? Share what you teach. Are you an experimenter? Share what you discover. Are you thoughtful? Share your conclusions. Are you … Keep reading…

Who Are You Marketing To?

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You know those workshops you go to where the instructor puts you on the spot right at the start by asking you to describe your target market? I’m one of those instructors. And I do it because a discussion about target markets is a critical … Keep reading…