Innovative Ways to Boost Exposure for Your Business and Attract New Customers

Alright, so many if not most of us would like to make money from doing something online. Maybe this is literally running an online business, maybe this is using digital marketing boost exposure.

Innovative Ways to Boost Exposure for Your Business and Attract New Customers

How to keep warm leads coming in (even if you hate marketing)

Do a quick search and you’ll find tons of tactics for getting word out about your products or services, and for attracting new customers My best advice is only do what feels natural to you. Keep things simple.

You’ll find that your customers will respond far better to your marketing if it’s coming from an authentic place rather than copying what others are doing. Plus you’ll end up being more innovative too! Seriously!

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Let’s do a quick jargon check before getting into my tips for using digital marketing for lead generation.

For example, “lead generation.” What is it? This is the process you apply (or the strategy you execute) to bring people into your sphere of influence.

Next, “warm lead.” This refers to anyone in your circle of influence who has interacted with you or your brand in the past, and has the potential to become a customer in the future.

Alright, here are three tips for attracting new leads to your business using digital marketing strategies.

Use Social Media Effectively

Social media is one of the most powerful tools available for promoting your business. But it can also be one of the biggest time sucks. Develop a simple social media strategy and then start posting engaging content. You may find inspiration from professionals such as Dan Rascal so make sure to watch what others are doing and generate ideas from there (without copying/stealing of course).

Invest in SEO

Search engine optimization (SEO) is another handy tool for promoting your business online. Just remember this is a long game! If you want people to discover your website when searching for relevant keywords, then it’s important to ensure your site is optimized for the search engines.

This can be confusing at first, but there are plenty of free resources to help you get started. Search engines (and humans) prefer websites that are easy to navigate, provide a good user experience and contain well-written, engaging content.

Content Marketing

Content marketing often goes hand-in-hand with SEO. Your content marketing efforts will likely be in the form of blog posts, articles, videos, or even eBooks. The goal is to provide value to your audience and build relationships with potential customers.

Pay-Per-Click Advertising

Pay-per-click (PPC) advertising is a form of online advertising that allows you to place ads on search engines and other websites. The good part is you only pay when someone clicks on your ad and it can be a great way to get immediate exposure for your business.

The most popular form of PPC advertising is Google AdWords. With AdWords, you can create text, image, or video ads that will be displayed on Google and its partner websites. In addition, you can target your ads to people based on their location, keywords they’ve searched for, and more.

Email Marketing

Email marketing is my favourite way to build relationships with your ideal customers/clients. This can involve sending nurture-type emails, protomotions, and even educational-type articles to help build your credibility. These emails are sent to subscribers who have opted in to receive your emails.

Alright, so many if not most of us would like to make money from doing something online. Maybe this is literally running an online business, maybe this is using digital marketing boost exposure.

One more thing. If you’ve got these tasks down you may be interested in my free resource library. This is where I keep my files, downloads, ebooks, worksheets and whatever else I manage to create. I love sharing what I learn and want to keep adding to this library so it becomes a wealth of helpful goodness.

This is a free resource but I do require a password to access the library itself. You can get access by popping your email address into the form below.

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5 Great Sites to Get Free Stock Photos

These days there are endless image sites to get amazing free stock photos.

There are so many sites offering royalty-free images there is no longer any reason to take any old image from the Internet and use it on your website.

5 Great Sites to Get Free Stock Photos

Hey, do you love this stock photo in my blog header image? It’s available exclusively from Sage Media & Marketing and free for your personal or commercial use.

What are royalty-free images?

There’s a difference between stock photos and royalty-free stock photos, although they can be one and the same.

At times.

A free stock image means you can use it free-of-charge. Royalty-free means you can use the image however you want but you may have to purchase it.

When you’re on a stock photo website, take a moment to review the terms and conditions. Sometimes you can download a free stock image but there are restrictions in how you can use it or you must credit the source and/or photographer.

Some sites allow you to use an image once for free and require you to purchase a license to use it again or in another way. Some free stock image photo sites are also royalty-free and allow you to use the images for commercial use.

There are some great commercial use, royalty-free free stock photo websites out there. And that’s important to us because we’re writers, not photographers.

We need the help!

While I do purchase stock images and take my own photos from time to time, I mix in a good amount of free stock photos on my website and social media.

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Image sites to get free stock photos

Sage Media & Marketing

These images are a customized mix of flat lays and lifestyle, perfect for bloggers and small business owners alike. There are 10 free stock photos available from Sage Media & Marketing with more promised in the future.

The best part about these stock images is they aren’t available on any other stock photo website so there’s a good chance you haven’t seen them around.

100 Stock Photos from Sage Media & Marketing

If you want to up your game, Sage Media & Marketing also sells packs of 100 high quality stock photos, perfect for bloggers!

desygner

Desygner is a design solution for just about everyone. In addition to offering royalty-free images for commercial use, it is also a powerful design tool for content creation, where you can use these images on your designs or thousands of pre-designed templates that you can get for free. Honestly? It’s Canva on steroids.

Pixabay

I’ve talked about Pixabay before and I still recommend it. It’s a great place to go for general images. The free stock photography site offers more than a million images and videos including illustrations and vector graphics. It’s worth checking out.

Unsplash

Unsplash is the hipster mecca of free stock photos. These beautiful, free photos are gifted by the world’s most generous community of photographers, according to the website.

All photos are licensed under Creative Commons Zero, meaning you can copy, modify, distribute and use the photos for free, including commercial purposes, without asking permission from or providing attribution to the photographer or Unsplash.

Gratisography

These quirky, creative, always free photos are toted as the world’s quirkiest collection of free high-resolution pictures. According to the website, these free stock photos are comprised of the world’s best, most creative images and are free of copyright restrictions.

New Old Stock (this is such a cool free stock photo site)

This site curates old photos for personal and non-commercial use, at minimum. Links to the original image location are provided for users to check the licensing details for themselves.

Most or all of the images available on this site are in the public domain, which means no permission is required to use these free stock photos at all.

These are a few of my go-to image sites for free stock images and I hope you find great images from them.

5 Great Sites to Get Free Stock Photos

But if we’re taking free stock photos, how do photographers get paid?

I wanted to address this objection because this freelance lifestyle isn’t easy. And, if you’re like me, you’re friends with professional photographers and you want to support them whenever possible.

And you may be wondering if taking free stock photos is a bit hypocritical since many photographers are freelance and we work so hard to not work for free.

When you use free stock photos you’re not stealing from the photographer. Many of them are trying to make a name for themselves and are gifting their images to the community as part of their long-term strategy.

Once they gain a larger following they’re able to make money from their photography through bookings, selling images to their follows and fans, and many other income streams. They’ve decided by offering some things for free it will help them reach their career goals.

Hmm…free stock photos are much like offering free advice on blogs….

Here’s the bottom line: if you don’t feel comfortable using free stock photos then don’t. Take your own or purchase them.

There are upsides to not using free stock photos. Not only will your conscience be clear, you’re images will be unique and customized if you take them yourself. If you purchase stock photos your images will likely higher quality and less “all over the Internet.”

So there are there’s that.

Once you have great photos, here’s how to make them even better.

These days there are endless sites to get amazing free stock photos. There are so many sites there's no excuse not to have great images on your website.

One more thing. You may be interested in my free resource library. This is where I keep my files, downloads, ebooks, worksheets and whatever else I manage to create. I love sharing what I learn and want to keep adding to this library so it becomes a wealth of helpful goodness.

This is a free resource but I do require a password to access the library itself. You can get access by popping your email address into the form below.

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These days there are endless sites to get amazing free stock photos. There are so many sites there's no excuse not to have great images on your website.

3 Tips for Branding Your Freelance Services Online

Are you wondering how to best represent your freelance services on social media? Whether you’re new to freelancing, staring a side hustle or going full-time with your writing business, branding your freelance services online can be challenging!

3 Tips for Branding Your Freelance Services Online

Freelancing has always been a popular option for folks wanting to start a side hustle or launch a business, but since the pandemic even more people are giving online business a try.

This is for a couple of reasons.

First, the chaos and uncertainty of the pandemic opened many people’s eyes to the imbalance of their current lifestyle and work habits. Freelancing allows for a (more) flexible schedule—you get to say when and how you’ll work.

Second, with rising inflation and the cost of living, it’s almost necessary to bring in extra cash. Or at least have a level set up that you can pull when needed.

If you’re freelancing or thinking about trying freelancing, then you’re already in the thick of it. Here are a couple suggestions for branding your freelance services online.

By the way, optimizing your social media profiles is important! You want to ensure potential clients know who you are, what you do, and why they should hire you.

Download your free ebook from my resource library! All you have to do is pop your email address into the form below and I’ll send you the password.

Once you’re in the library, navigate to the social media section and download the ebook called “Social Media Optimization.”

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Use social media as a portfolio

If you’re used to using social media for your personal life, then switching things over may feel like a chore. But it’s so worth it!

Talking about the projects you’re doing and the clients you love working with helps potential clients see what you can do, what you’re interested in working on and a little insight into your personality.

There may be some aspects of your work you can’t share, or that don’t show up well online (sitting behind a computer writing all day? You can only show that photo so many times before it becomes boring!).

And, by the way, if consistency is your challenge, you may want to consider services like White Label Social Media or stock photos.

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Align yourself with fellow freelancers

On the surface, networking on social media may not seem like a branding exercise, but hear me out.

When you find a supportive community, join in. Participate in the conversation, like or share good advice and give shout outs whenever possible.

Your other friends and followers will see this activity and it helps cement that you’re a freelancer in their minds. It’s subtle, but it works.

Also, networking is good for business. As you build authentic relationships with other freelancers, you just never know where that will go. Maybe they end up looking for a subcontractor and you’re top of mind. Or perhaps they post a job that is right up your alley. You can’t anticipate when or how these opportunities will come up, but they will eventually. Trust me, social media is a great tool for networking!

Social media makes it easy for people to contact you

Yes, you have a preferred way leads connect with you, but we live in a multi-channel, extra-connected, instant DM society and sometimes you just have to accept it!

Being available to connect with on social media, whether it’s in direct messages or comments, can help you nurture leads who aren’t quite ready to reach out to you formally.

This omnipresence can be a bit stressful because there are so many places people can message you, but you can limit the overwhelm by limiting your social activity to the places where you can sustain an active presence.

Need a strategy? This simple five-step social media strategy for writers should help.

I hope this helps you to make the most of social media as a freelancer!

Are you wondering how to best represent your freelance services on social media? Whether you're new to freelancing, staring a side hustle or going full-time with your writing business, branding your freelance services online can be challenging!

One more thing. You may be interested in my free resource library. This is where I keep my files, downloads, ebooks, worksheets and whatever else I manage to create. I love sharing what I learn and want to keep adding to this library so it becomes a wealth of helpful goodness.

This is a free resource but I do require a password to access the library itself. You can get access by popping your email address into the form below.

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How to Effectively Market Your Services to Boost Freelance Success

A common complaint I hear from freelancers is they’re so busy working in their business they struggle to find time to work in their business. Maybe you’re in this position now, you’re busy working and you’re wondering how to market your services to take things to the next level.

A common complaint I hear from freelancers is they're so busy working in their business they struggle to find time to work in their business. Maybe you're in this position now, you're busy working and you're wondering how to market your services to take things to the next level.

Let me paint a picture. You’ve been running your business for a while, getting paid for your services and you’ve also built a portfolio you’re proud of.

And while you like the work, you’d like to explore what steps you can take to push your success further. And make more profit.

When you reach this point (or rather, plateau), you may feel like taking things to the next level is some sort of mystery only the REALLY good freelancers solve. But once you understand the steps you need to take to grow your business, you realize it’s simpler than it seems. 

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How to market your services to boost your freelance business

When it comes to marketing your freelance business, there are a lot of simple routes that you can take to find success.

Believe it or not, marketing your business isn’t rocket science. It’s simply a case of knowing what steps you need to take to see results. That, of course, is unique to you and your business so it may take some trial and error. But rest assured, you’ll find your secret sauce.

No really! You will! 

Bearing that in mind, here are three quick ways you can market your services to make growing your freelance business a little easier.

Use social media Effectively 

When used properly, social media marketing can be an effective way to grow your brand and your business.

If you’re keen to use social media, then optimizing your platforms and using them consistently with on-brand messages is a great place to start. Figure out your content marketing mix and you’re on your way!

Like I always say, one of the best ways to find work when you’re looking for work is to tell people. Get the word out about your services. 

Extra credit: Simpe 5 Step Social Media Strategy for Writers

Consult an expert

If you’re feeling unsure of what strategic steps you should take to boost your biz, then hiring a coach is an excellent step. Find someone who has experience in your specific niche or area, and also make sure you connect with them and their teaching style.

Coaching isn’t cheap but if you find the right person then you will get that money back quickly with all you learn and apply.

Freelancers can fall into the trap of thinking they have to do everything themselves. But the truth is, no one is an island. Ask for help from those who have gone before you, or are at least a few steps ahead.

Utilise testimonials to market your services

There are so many solopreneurs and side hustlers these days. And often, prospects want some assurance that the small business or freelancer they’re considering is reliable, trustworthy and skilled. That’s where testimonials come in.

One of the best ways to give potential clients assurance that you are, in fact, a good bet, having testimonials from previous clients can be important and useful in snagging that business. 

Of course these are just three simple suggestions to market your services to showcase just how easy marketing can be. So the next time you find yourself saying you’re too busy to market, give your head a shake and go put up another client testimony on your website.

A common complaint I hear from freelancers is they're so busy working in their business they struggle to find time to work in their business. Maybe you're in this position now, you're busy working and you're wondering how to market your services to take things to the next level.

One more thing. I think you’ll enjoy my free resource library. This is where I keep my files, downloads, ebooks, worksheets and whatever else I manage to create. I love sharing what I learn and want to keep adding to this library so it becomes a wealth of helpful goodness.

This is a free resource but I do require a password to access the library itself. You can get access by popping your email address into the form below.

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How to Write an Elevator Pitch

The phrase “elevator pitch” in a freelancing or writing context comes from the idea of communicating what you do, who you serve and what makes you different in the time it takes to ride from floor to floor in an elevator.

An elevator pitch is a short, compelling sales pitch.

How to Write an Elevator Pitch

Do you want the worksheets that go with this training?

I’ve added the two elevator pitch templates from this post as a free download to my resource library. This is a freebie you’ll need a password to access the library itself. You can get the password by popping your email address into the form below.

Once you’re in the library, navigate to the “freelancing” section and look for “Elevator Pitch Templates.”

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How to write an elevator pitch

We know how our writing can help others but our potential clients don’t. If they did they probably wouldn’t need a writer. It’s a classic conundrum.

We can get so wrapped up in our writing world we forget that those not in our world have no idea what we do or why it matters. It’s our job to educate them.

This is where the elevator pitch comes in.

  • I know, how can you explain all the facets of your writing business in a way that both makes sense and persuades someone to hire you?
  • How can you craft a pitch that not only positions you as an expert but convinces the listener you’re the right person to deliver the solution he or she wants?
  • (Yes, this is the hard part.)

Telling people “I’m a writer,” is great but it’s vague. What do you write? How do you make money? Who reads what you write?

See what I mean?

  • Think about what you do and then expand your definition to include someone who has no clue about your industry
  • Think of your grandmother or someone in an unrelated field
  • How would you describe the service you provide to them?
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Break it down

Before we write the pitch let’s answer these questions:

  • Who do you help (in an ideal world)
  • What problem are you solving
  • What is your solution?

Who do you help?

When I first went through this process I realized I couldn’t be a generalist and “help everyone with their writing stuff.”

I needed to zero in on an audience/group. It took some soul searching, but I recognized I had a passion for helping new/emerging writers learn how to make money from their writing and helping established writers market themselves.

Yeah, I know. Specific. Scary stuff, right?

Except it’s not scary. It doesn’t mean I can’t help non-writers with writing (I do it all the time), it just means I have an ideal client who I focus on the most.

In the end I found the easiest way to write an elevator pitch was by filling in the blank. Here are two formulas I found helpful.

networking tips for introverted writers

Free elevator pitch templates

I’ve added the two elevator pitch templates from this post as a free download to my resource library. This is a freebie you’ll need a password to access the library itself. You can get the password by popping your email address into the form below.

Once you’re in the library, navigate to the “freelancing” section and download “Elevator Pitch Templates.”

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How to write an elevator pitch example ONE

The biggest problem my audience has is _________________ and I can solve this problem by (showing them, giving them, etc.) ___________________, which will allow them to ________________ and that really speaks to their desire to ________________.

I found this over on Zach Spuckler’s site in a freebie called Your First Course Playbook. I have no idea if it’s still kicking around but I thought it was a good exercise.

How to write an elevator pitch example TWO

I help _________________ (target population) with/gain/develop _________________ (problem) by delivering _________________ (your solution).

This is from a six-week coaching program I did last summer called Simplify Your Social Media and Spark Your Sales. It isn’t offered anymore but if it ever is again I will let you know.

I LOVED every second of it and ran through it a few times after the initial course. I like how simple this sentence is. It helped me narrow my gaze enough to commit to an elevator pitch.


networking tips for introverted writers

Do you want the worksheets that go with this training?

I’ve added the two elevator pitch templates from this post as a free download to my resource library. This is a freebie you’ll need a password to access the library itself. You can get the password by popping your email address into the form below.

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Other Helpful Articles

The phrase "elevator pitch" came from explaining what you do, who you serve and what makes you different in the time it would take to ride an elevator.

One more thing. You may be interested in my free resource library. This is where I keep my files, downloads, ebooks, worksheets and whatever else I manage to create. I love sharing what I learn and want to keep adding to this library so it becomes a wealth of helpful goodness.

This is a free resource but I do require a password to access the library itself. You can get access by popping your email address into the form below.

Get Access to My Free Resource Library

* indicates required
The phrase "elevator pitch" came from explaining what you do, who you serve and what makes you different in the time it would take to ride an elevator.
Elevator speech. Elevator statement. Elevator pitch. Why are we on an elevator all the time? The phrase came from the idea you need to figure out a way to explain what you do, who you serve, and what makes you different in the time it would take to ride an elevator. It's a short, compelling sales pitch. So, how do you write an elevator pitch?