Blog

Here's an archive of blog posts I've shared since 1999, including articles, interviews, books, and news. Topics include marketing, digital marketing, copywriting, communications, and business.

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letters, envelope, old

5 Ways to Promote Anything By Email

October 19, 2020

I'm subscribed to several newsletters, as you know. I love soaking up as much information as possible and learning as much as I can about my profession. I want to stay relevant and on top of what's going on.

I already talked about my “news” newsletters. But other newsletters fall into three categories: marketing, digital, and business (including consulting). In the business and consulting fields, the senders typically write every day, like I do.

I love their daily emails and don't find them intrusive. But some of them I do ignore once in a while because they are overtly promotional and pushy.…

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criticism, write a review, review

10-Step Process for Responding to Reviews

October 17, 2020

Reputation management is becoming such an important service that many marketing consultants and agencies are offering this singular service. For example, there's Reputation.ca, a Canadian digital marketing agency that specializes in reputation management and SEO services based on it.

They offer negative content suppression services, review management, corporate communications, and internal reputation management (such as managing employee reviews). They even offer services related Wikipedia profiles, libel issues, and crisis management.

But of all the reputation management steps you can take, responding to reviews is the most important. Both good and bad ones.

Negative reviews can influence your customers' decisions and hurt your business.…

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percent, one hundred, 100

On Perfect-Fit Clients and Productized Services

October 16, 2020

I may be a professional independent marketing consultant, but I'm still a freelancer. Sure, the distinction I often hear is that a freelancer does mostly execution work where a consultant mostly… consults. As in, she advises, coaches, guides. She steers while freelancers row.

One of the newsletters I'm subscribed to is from Kai Davis. His newsletter for Indie Consultants always offers some brilliant insights. Much of what he says resonates with me because they mirror my philosophy.

Today, his newsletter answered a question from one of his subscribers about chasing a client who owes them money. The amount was small, according to Kai, but it was still infuriating to this subscriber who has done the work and wants to get paid.…

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chest, trunk, treasure

Break Free From The Burden of Backlinks

October 15, 2020

One of the most common tactics for SEO, and it's something that a lot of SEO experts swear by, is building backlinks. In fact, some of the most prominent SEO agencies (I won't mention any names but they have a very popular YouTube channel) tout that backlinks is the single, most important SEO strategy.

I disagree.

There are four schools of thought on the topic:

  1. You need a high backlink quantity,
  2. You need high quality backlinks,
  3. You need both, and
  4. You need neither.

Some say that the amount of backlinks pointing to your website or articles is far more important than their quality.…

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What Reality TV Shows Teach About Marketing

What Reality TV Shows Teach About Marketing

October 14, 2020

It's that time where that much-anticipated event is taking over our screens, social media feeds, and pop culture news.

Yes, it's the new season of The Bachelorette.

Something you may not know about me is that my wife has a nephew who's part of the 2020 lineup. Blake Moynes is the son of Emily Moura-Moynes (my sister-in-law, who is also an author, coach, and client of mine).

He's the dapper gentleman in the green suit on the right.

While I'm not a personal fan of the show, I think it teaches a lot about marketing.

Last night, as the show's premiere graced our screens, my wife's family were all huddled in front of their TV sets, posting Instagram and Facebook snaps with #teamblake as their hashtag.…

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girl, english, dictionary

Great Marketing Tells Great Stories

October 13, 2020

I'm a history buff and an armchair linguistic anthropologist. I love learning about languages, where they came from, how they evolved, and how they shaped culture and civilization.

The reason is, when I learn where words come from, I can also understand how they evolved and how that evolution was either an indication of how society has evolved, or how society's evolution forced the language to change.

To me, learning languages is a great way to learn how society has changed as the changes in language are a reflection of the changes in society.

Similarly, my favorite videos on YouTube are from polyglots.…

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content writing and seo

My Content Outsourcing Order Template for SEO

October 12, 2020

The other day, a client asked me about to outsource content for SEO purposes. I explained the various steps and enclosed my “content order” template.

I thought about it and realized that this might be helpful to you, too.

Before I get to the point where I need to fill out this template and order content for my clients, I first conduct three major steps:

The pagematch document helps me to map topics to specific pages on my client's website. Sometimes, they have all the pages already that simply need to be refreshed, massaged or edited, or rewritten entirely to fit the matched topic.…

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Start up entrepreneur

Testing a Reverse Content Marketing Approach

October 10, 2020

I'm trying something new today. After watching a presentation by Philip Morgan, he recommended that, to improve your writing, you need to reduce friction from your writing process. I agree.

First, a few important points.

Content marketing is one if not the most effective methods to market your services. It's good for SEO, for communicating your expertise, for creating a greater perception of authority, and for a vast number of other reasons.

You need to create content, true. But you also need an email list, too. I may have mentioned it a few times in the past.

I also recommend writing to your list every day (daily is preferable, but three times weekly is the minimum), and posting your emails to your blog — your emails become content you can use, reuse, edit, disseminate, and amplify.…

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What A Career Coach Can Teach You About Communications

What A Career Coach Can Teach You About Communications

October 10, 2020

I once worked with a career coach. J.T. O'Donnell, who used to own her own recruitment agency and now coaches job seekers and executives, teaches something she calls “the disruptive cover letter.”

Sure, it’s meant for job seekers. But as a professional, there’s a great lesson in there. This technique can be easily applied to any letter designed to capture attention, create interest, and drive action.

While most cover letters are yawn-inducing rather than awe-inspiring, it makes sense that, to stand out, you have to… well, stand out.

This is true when every other cover letter out there has all the same overused lingo and boring, me-too approaches.…

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Stop Writing For SEO, Do This Instead

Stop Writing For SEO, Do This Instead

October 9, 2020

On ClientCon, hosted by Liston Witherill, presenter Margo Aaron gave a great presentation on writing for one's audience. An Inc.com contributing writer and talented copywriter, she had a lot to say on the topic.

During the Q&A at the end, an audience member asked about SEO when trying to write for one's audience. Her question was:

“There seems to be so much emphasis on writing stuff that will have better SEO, but that’s not really what I want to write about and I get stuck there. Any tips? I just want to be recognized as a trusted advisor in my niche.”

Margo's response was spot-on.

She said to write for the user, not the search engines.…

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Strategic marketing consultant Michel Fortin