Earlier this year, I went through a period where I was buying every educational program possible. Buying tickets to Problogger Training 2013 coincided with that period. Although Problogger Training was also the one that took me out of my comfort zone the most. Have I mentioned how terrible I am at live networking?
I stepped into this vortex of learning in a bid to try and grow my business. Education, to that point, hadn’t been high. Now, I feel like I could transform anyone’s business with all the incredible knowledge I’ve acquired from some of the best minds in the world.
The problem is, I’ve yet to implement all of it for myself. So, here I am, coming home from Problogger with a million ideas bubbling away in my head and the high possibility of not implementing any of it.
So this post is going to serve as my action plan – my accountability post, if you like.
This is what I learnt from Problogger and this is how I’m going to implement it over the coming months. Hopefully there’s some takeaways here for your business too.
Amy Porterfield: Facebook Marketing Success
What Amy taught during this session on creating a giveaway (also known as an ethical bribe to get people to subscribe to your list), adding it to a Facebook post and turning that post into a paid Facebook ad targeted your competitor’s Facebook followers isn’t new to me. I’m an alumni of Amy’s Facebook Marketing Profit Lab. It was part of that period where my education levels were high!
I’ve gleaned so much more than this from Amy, but yet to implement a large part of it – or at least focus on it. Although, I have clients who are happily benefiting from it!
Some other takeaways from Amy included changing your Facebook timeline cover regularly and using a call to action in your cover. The latter I’m already doing.
Another tip was to post two to five times a day to Facebook, looking to educate, entertain or empower each time. Another post idea is the Sneak Peek Strategy, where you share some behind the scenes of what you do. People love personal stuff.
One thing I’ve been experimenting with and had success with is taking a snapshot of a blog post and using that as the image. It looks really effective and, if you have likes and shares from your social channels shown in the image, it provides great social proof. In general, using more images in my statuses is working. I might get lower reach, but I get higher engagement.
ACTION STEP: 1. Repost my ethical bribe to Facebook. 2. Advertise more using the Power Editor, targeting some of the business groups I’ve been part of. Still trying to get over the idea of targeting my competitors, so I’ll sit on that one for a while! 3. Monitor the conversion on my lead page (I’m happy to share how I do this if anyone’s interested).
Jim Stewart: SEO for WordPress
Probably my only disappointment with Problogger Training (and it’s pretty minor) is that the questions for SEO for WordPress were in such abundance that Jim didn’t finish his presentation. I would have liked to have heard more from him. I would have happily missed the tea break just to hear the rest of what he said (did I mention I’m not good at event networking?!).
The real highlight from his presentation was learning about some tools to use since Google Keywords disappeared. They include Google Trends and Google Keyword Optimizer. I also loved seeing how he ranked for certain keywords while we were standing watching the presentation and hit home how much I need to concentrate on pulling my posts into a series to rank for certain words.
Another tip was about no follow links. Jim advises against it and asked the questions: why are you putting no follow links in the first place? You should only be adding links that are relevant to your site. A fair point! I know this one is more a hot topic for personal bloggers than business bloggers.
ACTION STEP: Use Google Trends to make sure I’ve got the right keywords and see how they compare to my old keywords found using Google Keywords Tool. Concentrate on a series of posts to rank for those keywords.
Trevor Young and Yvonne Adele: Launching Your Speaking Career
I used to be incredibly shy. Well, still am in a networking setting. But put me on a stage with a microphone and I feel right at home. It hasn’t always been that way. I started singing lessons in my early 20s and had a teacher who pushed me to perform publicly. Next thing I was singing original songs to thousands of people and hosting many of the concerts as well.
Now I just love the thrill of the stage. Speaking is one area I’d love to grow more in. I’m already doing a bit, having done social media and blogging talks for the University of Tasmania and Tasmanian small businesses, but need to have a particular focus on it. And I need to charge more!
One of their takeaways was to determine what your speaking goals are – is it to get consulting gigs, get paid for speaking or sell products? For those of you still trying to muster the courage to speak publicly, one tip was to get yourself on an interview-style panel.
ACTION STEP: Create a Speakers page and tab on this site. Put together some video showing an example of a section of a keynote to help sell myself as a speaker. Pull together some of the images of me speaking live to go on the page. Determine what my speaking goals are. Revisit the outline of my keynote speech. “Start thinking and acting like a speaker’’.
Justine Bloome: Designing Your Blog
I’ve had so many tweaks done to this site lately, it’s just not where I want it to be anymore. Which is a shame, because I’ve always received comments on how much people have liked the simplicity of the site and all that white space.
One of the tweaks I had done to the header has also now meant the navigation bar isn’t responsive in mobile. That’s the sort of stuff that makes me feel slightly frazzled. I’m a perfectionist, so I like things to be just right.
Justine talked about first-time visitors being clear on what the blog is about and “what’s in it for me?’’ Another tip was not to build a homepage with lots of “doors’’ or the paradox of choice will simply paralyse people.
On that point, you shouldn’t commit “share button suicide’’ by giving people too many social share buttons. She recommends two or three, where your audience is most likely to share it, and get rid of the rest. Her experience has shown you’ll get more shares and more traffic.
She also talked about not needing a separate mobile site or using the WP mobile plugin (which I’m guilty of!). Instead, she recommends choosing a template that has responsive design built into it. Sounds smart to me!
ACTION STEP: I’ve already put a feeler out in regard to getting this blog back to where I want it to be visually and from a customer point of view. Enough of trying to do this myself. It’s go pro, or go home! Now to 1. Revisit the first impression of my site, 2. Finding a responsive design, and 3. Look at my navigation and calls to action.
I have to admit, there’s a few sessions I missed that I’m going to devour via the digital pass and then likely add to this list, but this is the main list for now! Overall, there were just so many brilliant takeaways, things to think about and inspiration that it’s hard to do the event justice in one post.
Have you put an emphasis on any of these topics in your marketing lately? If so, what have you been doing? I’d love to hear!