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Friday, 29 July 2016

Matt Lloyd Guidelines: How to Define a Strong Customer Avatar

A customer avatar is an imaginary person that describes the ideal demographic for your business. This avatar is a composite of many characteristics that describe your target market—the customers your business desires the most. The characteristics will vary depending on what your company is selling, but will comprise of someone who will buy from you over and over again.
Matt Lloyd Guidelines: How to Define a Strong Customer Avatar

Businesses create customer avatars instead of just using preferred demographic statistics because these avatars can ultimately help you make better decisions. Imagining an individual that has his or her own backstory that buys from your company can give executives a more complete picture.

Define but Don’t Limit

Where does a company begin in determining their own avatars? Think of video game avatars. When those are created, you have to do much more than just name them. They are constructed with specifics, in a number of categories. When specifying your customer avatar, it will be no different. Establish categories that must be filled out, such as, their name, a photo, age, interests, family information, psychological traits, etc. There are websites that provide avatar builders like Mad Men Yourself and Face Your Manga.
Defining your customer avatar is crucial so your business can focus its marketing and new offerings appropriately. Companies can then tailor a message that will resonate with customers most likely to buy from them. Just be certain not to limit your target audience too much. After years in this business, I’ve discovered that casting a wide net is more productive. Then, within that big net, people from your avatar’s main demographic will buy from you. There will also be others that don’t fall into your targeted demographic that will also buy from you. This wouldn’t happen if your marketing didn’t encompass this broader strategy. The last thing you want is to limit anyone from buying from you, even though they might not fall into your originally identified avatar.


Once you have defined your customer avatar, it’s now time to market. Keeping in mind that you want to broaden your marketing efforts to a scope further beyond your ideal demographic, it’s time to place some ads.
Where to begin? This is where your avatar can be used as a key advantage. It can force you to brainstorm actual marketing channels that you would use to advertise and other methods to reach those customers. It helps answer key questions like the types of ads that would be effective or the vocabulary and tone that should be used. Just remember to broaden the scope beyond the rules of your avatar to cast a wide net.

Capture Leads

The leads that resonate the most with you, will buy from you. You’ll get these leads with your funnel and lead capture page. These potential customers will subscribe to your list. They’ll start getting your emails, your videos and all of your marketing efforts. Introduce yourself within that messaging, explaining what you’re doing and why.

Final Thought

One last thing that is very important when communicating to your avatar’s key demographic: be authentic. Adding personal details, when appropriate, can help show your authenticity. This will help your business stand out in a crowded market.
Creating your company’s own customer avatar is beneficial. It provides focus for marketing and new products. It helps answer key questions, is a great point of reference, and adds a little imagination when trying to define your ideal customer.

-Matt Lloyd 

Friday, 22 July 2016

MOBE Training - 3 Steps to Developing a Winning Content Marketing Strategy

A content marketing road map can and should be a nice blend between strategy and execution. To get started, think about your content marketing road map as a document with the following table of contents
  1. What do you want to achieve? (Content marketing strategy)
  2. How will you achieve it? (Content marketing tactics)
  3. Who will do what to help you make those tactics a reality? (A content calendar, for example)
Now all you have to do is fill out your TOC. Here’s how:

MOBE Training - 3 Steps to Developing a Winning Content Marketing Strategy

What Do You Want to Achieve? (Content Marketing Strategy)

Or in other words, what are your goals? If you’re having trouble formulating an actionable goal, pick a version of one of the following:
  1. Drive more new unique users to my site.
  2. Get visitors, leads, and/or existing customers to increase how much they engage with my content or product (trial downloads, shares, likes, tweets, etc.).
  3. Convert visitors into leads or leads into sales or both.
These sample goals are a good start, but I encourage you to get as specific as possible. Make your goals easy to measure by specifying quantities and time frames wherever possible. Also, don’t forget to make sure that each goal is well-researched to contribute to your overall business strategy. After all, content marketing should only be one component of your total marketing mix.

How Will You Achieve Your Goals? (Content Marketing Tactics)

Next, you have to align content marketing tactics to each goal that you want to achieve. How many goals and how many tactics you choose will depend on the amount of people, money, and technology you have at your disposable. I personally recommend focusing on a few goals and tactics at a time. By staggering your goals, you can build a long-term road map where each phase can be informed by what you learned prior.
Examples of content marketing tactics are:
  1. Rewrite site content to target high volume or long-tail keywords.
  2. Write a whitepaper or eBook that can be distributed via social media or other paid channels.
  3. Build a blog section targeted to leads who are considering a purchase (e.g., more in-depth product walk-throughs, implementation best practices, etc.).
  4. Create gated content to collect email addresses.
  5. Recruit influencers to write syndicated content for your blog and to share each blog post with their countless followers.
The important thing is to map each specific tactic to one, and only one, goal from section 1 above. Of course, you can have different tactics support a single goal. This will help keep your content road map focused and easy to execute.
Be thoughtful about which tactics you choose to support each goal. Make sure that you understand what tactics are most effective for what types of goals.

Who Will Do What to Help Make Your Tactics a Reality? (A Content Calendar, for Example)

A content calendar may sound cumbersome to create, but it’s not, and it can be a great tool to keep everyone organized and on schedule. A content calendar outlines a number of basic needs:
  1. What content pieces will be created for each content tactic you choose to pursue—For example, ‘Write a whitepaper explaining how to calculate build vs. buy for enterprise analytics software.’
  2. When each content piece will go live—For example, ‘Whitepaper will be published by mm/dd/yy.’ Time each content piece in a way that makes sense for your overall marketing strategy. If you plan to run a traffic campaign, make sure you’ve got all your best lead generating content pieces live by then.
  3. Who is assigned to write or work with a vendor to create each content piece -For example, ‘The CEO will write a blog post announcing XYZ product launch. The content manager will recruit influencers to try the new product and write syndicated content.’
I used bullet form to explain my point, but it’s best to use a spreadsheet for planning purposes, where each content piece is tied to a tactic and each tactic is tied to a strategic goal.
These days, content is being created faster and in more volume than people know what to do with. Instead of creating content volume, focus on building content for the right time, at the right point in the sales funnel, and for the right audience.

Jehan Lalkaka

Read Jehan Lalkaka’s comments on, “Influencer Marketing—How to Get the Most Out of It” on Quora.

Friday, 15 July 2016

How to Manage Your Time: Lessons from the Cat

As the founder of MOBE, I find myself juggling an awful lot of tasks and projects from day to day. I am full of ideas and always motivated to grow the company. I also love getting out there and meeting people that have joined the business. The problem is, there are only so many hours in the day to accomplish all these things—and I didn’t decide to start my own business so that I would have to work 24 hours a day. You probably didn’t either.
How to Manage Your Time: Lessons from the Cat

Be like the Cat

So I’ve come up with a model for the ideal time management of a person that has their own small business: Be like the cat. Okay, I know that might surprise you. After all, a cat doesn’t seem very productive at first glance, but bear with me.
Look at your average housecat. It spends half the day and half the night doing something it’s famous for: relaxing. Let’s say on average your cat spends 16 hours just chilling out or sleeping. It spends the rest of its time eating, washing, hunting, playing, and checking out its territory.
If we take into consideration that sleeping and relaxing are the cat’s favorite activities, then this is a very effective use of time! In total, that’s about eight hours of wakefulness and productivity during every 24-hour period. That’s about the same amount of time you probably spent working as an employee.
Essentially, the cat spends the same amount of time working as most of us do, but arguably a lot more time enjoying itself than the rest of us.
Time management is all about deciding what you really want to be doing with your time and then getting your necessary tasks done so that you can spend more hours doing the things you enjoy. After all, that’s part of the reason all of us become entrepreneurs—to get the maximum benefit out of our working hours. Ideally, we needn’t work any more hours in a day than our cats!

The Business Owner’s Time Trap

In an article discussing how to work smarter, not longer when running your own business, Robert Craven of The Directors’ Centre says, “Whether unintentionally or not, many of us don’t work as efficiently as possible some or even most of the time.” He’s specifically addressing business owners, since we have a tendency to overwork ourselves and forget about things like food, breaks, and sometimes even other human beings.
I’m a numbers guy, and a lot of you probably are too. So how does better time management affect your bottom line? According to the Happy Planet Index, feeling non-stressed and happy during work results in 31 percent high productivity levels, and 37 percent more sales. The lesson I take from this is that we all need to work smarter and more effectively, not necessarily longer.

Final Thought

Try to dedicate a specific amount of time to your business each and every day, and keep a clear list of goals to work on so you don’t waste time. When you limit your working hours, you’ll discover that you stop fiddling with unprofitable activities and focus on the money-making activities instead. That’s the best way to work! If you need help with administrative tasks, look into hiring an assistant or part-time worker to help you maximize those working hours.
When work is finished, remember to relax and focus your attention on the things that make you relaxed and happy. Conversely, use your time at work effectively.
So is your cat awake? Don’t let him think he’s the most efficient creature in the house. Go be productive!