Dec 19, 2013

5 Reasons to use Email Marketing

use email marketing to grow your business

A great deal of individual entrepreneurs and small business owners use the two big social websites to promote their business online. Why? Because setting up an account and using it to promote the business is free, to a certain extent. Another important online marketing service that business owners can use to stay in touch with their customers regularly is Email Marketing. Is it free? Yes, it is.  

Most of the email marketing services are free to use, up to a certain extent to learn and understand the guidelines.


5 reasons why you should use email marketing to grow your business


1. Good Investment

This is a very cost-effective marketing service to promote businesses.  According to this 2013 survey66% of sales promoters claim that e-mail provides an ‘excellent’ or ‘good’ ROI, with 8% of companies accomplishing more than 50 percent of their revenue through this sales channel. 


2. Easy to use

You don't need to be an expert in designing. Offers, advertisements, or just an article with an image can be made quickly and easily using the available tools and templates.

3. Good Relationship Building 

Make your prospects and customers feel special and cared. Compared to Social Media, building a one on one relationship is effortless in email marketing. You can tailor the messages to suit individual prospects and customers to boost sales. You can ask your existing customers to share the offers with their friends.You can schedule birthday cards, anniversary cards etc to your prospects and customers. There are several methods to build a personal relationship using email marketing.

4. Easy to Track

Though Social Media enables you to reach a larger audience, it is difficult to know whether your messages are read or action taken. You can easily track your email campaigns. You can get to know whether the messages are opened, links clicked or action taken by your prospects and customers.

5. Save Your Time

You can schedule a series of messages to save your time when you know that you are going to be occupied for the rest of the week. Time sensitive messages like offers can be scheduled to reach a large number of people in diverse locations spread across various time zones.

I have given below some of the email marketing services. Give them a try and find out the one that would work best for your business.

Image courtesy - Stuart Miles, digitalart, nirots | freedigitalphotos.net

Dec 12, 2013

3 Reasons to Say No To Social Media Marketing



Say NO to Social Media Marketing if

1. You don't have a website for your business
2. You don't have a good logo for your business
3. You don't have a business card


Build a Website for your Business

A website is a virtual home for your business. The one place where people can find the information and facts about your business is the website. Having a website, in fact, would reduce the amount of time you spend on the internet promoting your business. When you have a website for your business, you give the people an opportunity to know you as well as your company. So if you don't have a website for your business, build one. Until then don't spend your valuable time on the internet to publicize your business.

Here are a few websites of different niche, that I have given below. Take a look at them. You can get some ideas to build a website for your business.

Carpenter - Barcelar's Woodworks
Kids classes - Gymboree Classes for Kids
Gym for tiny tots - The Little Gym
Photographer - Generations Photography
Network Marketer - Health Coach, Author, Speaker

Ok. Now that you know the reasons to have a website for your Business. The next important step is to design a good logo for your business.

Get a good logo for your Business

A good logo represent your Business. A good logo tell the story of your business. A good logo is not just a visual art but represent the nature and theme of your business. A good logo should have a memorable style and design. A good logo is an identity for your business. Get the help of a graphic artist or a logo designer to design the logo for your business.

Here are some of the sample logo designs for you to get inspired. More designs here.

Logo Design Sample1
Logo Design Sample2
Logo Design Sample3
Logo Design Sample4

Have a business card

You would wonder why should you have a business card, when you are going to promote your business online. A business card will give immediate access to you, when some one is not online but want to connect with you. A business card not only will have your contact details such as phone number and email address, but also your website address. You can also include your social media account details. Business card is a must for your real world networking strategy, which in turn could help you in your Online Marketing. Having your QR code in your business card will connect potential clients to your website and social media page. Your business card will come in handy in a chance encounter with other business persons. 

Here are a few sample business card designs

Business Card Sample1

Business Card Sample2


If you have a website, a logo for your business and business card, then lets talk about promoting your business online.

Dec 5, 2013

Time Management of a Virtual Assistant

Time Management of Virtual Assistant


Prioritize:

Start the day with a TO-DO list that has the list of tasks and the amount of time to spend on the tasks. Having this list save myself from overworking. Living in India and serving clients from the other part of the globe gives me an edge over other virtual assistants who live in the same country. For example, I start my day by doing those tasks that has to be completed before my clients wake up. Because many of them assign tasks to me that has be taken up by them the very next morning when they wake up.A few of my clients prefer to share their posts in their social media accounts in THEIR time zone manually, instead of using any scheduling applications. In that case, I spend the end of the my day posting messages from their social media accounts which is the time of day-break for them.

Shared Time: 

I don't promise more than 2hrs a day for a client when I submit my proposal. And I stick to it by paying attention only to that client's tasks. By specifying the amount of time that I would spare for their work everyday, my clients would know how much of completed work can they expect from me on any given day.

Build Career: 

Just like any other virtual assistant, I find myself with very little work on some days. I make use of the free time to build my career. So what should virtual assistants do to build their career?  I write blogs, develop new skills and network with other freelancers. I also, send seasonal ecards, to those clients who are on the verge of forgetting my service, to remind my availability.

All work and no play makes Virtual Assistant a dull person! So, take time off for yourself, your family and for your friends.

Dec 4, 2013

How to watermark your images using picmonkey.com

Watermarking images

This is quite easy. Just follow these steps and you will have your picture watermarked in few minutes. I am not a very creative person, but I tried my hand to do some creative work. haha. So, please bear with me, if the images are not very attractive.
Step1: Got to http://www.picmonkey.com and click on  and select the image from your computer. I selected quite an ordinary photo from my iPhone. The one that you are seeing below is "before the watermark". Its just a mushroom, that I photographed using my +AppleiPhone from my backyard after the rains overnight. Just played with the +repix app to apply some flares.

Step 2:  This is the basic Edit Screen.Click of text "Tt".



Step 3: When you click on "Add Text" button, you will see a text box on the image. Also, the Text editor to choose the blend mode, color of the text etc.

Type the word you want to appear on the image.I typed my name UMA MAHI. Select the desired "Blend Mode". I chose "Overlay" . Adjust the "Fade" bar to get your desired level of fade effect on the text. You can use the "Size" bar to adjust the size of your text. If you want to change the place of the text on your photo, then place your mouse over the text. You will see a four headed arrow cursor. Click and drag the text to place it anywhere you want on the image. This is how the watermarked image look like.

Some more sample watermarked images of mine that I did in picmonkey.com

Original image sample 1

Watermarked image sample 1

Original image sample 2

Watermarked image sample 2

Original image sample 3

Watermarked image sample 3


But before actually learning to watermark your images or photographs, you have to know why should you watermark your images.

Do you want to watermark a bunch of photos? Then here are the detailed step by step instructions.

I have given below some of the watermarked images. Take a look at them and get inspired.
        
This beautiful image was watermarked using a design application called "Photoshop" version 7 by Sarah

A hidden watermarked image below - photo credit: J.P.Robertson via photopin cc

If you found this post useful then please share it with your social media friends.

If you want to share your watermarked images, then please feel free to share it in the comments. Thanks for your time.