Creating Your Home on the Internet

Creating Your Home On The Internet

Business has changed, and the internet is a constantly changing place. While it’s important to have your Twitter, Pinterest, Facebook, Instagram, and other social media spaces, the core of any digital strategy is a website that you own.

One of the most cost effective and essential tools that any business can have is a blog, an effective place for your business to communicate to your customers.

There are many different platforms out there, from Drupal and Joomla, to Squarespace and WordPress.  Here at NorthIQ, we lean towards WordPress because it is easy to implement, and quick to develop for, but any tool that lets you quickly post to a website domain that you own, and which will allow you to get your content back out of it later is a great choice.

No matter what you choose, there are some things you should consider when building your home on the internet. Continue reading “Creating Your Home on the Internet”

Auto Responders with Mail Chimp – Revisited

How to Set Up An Automatic Email Download

We’re doing a bunch of work on Manage Comics this week. One of the things we were working on were the landing page and auto-responder for Manage Comics.

When you inquire about Manage Comics, you get a 32 page download sent to you automatically.  This download tells you everything you need to know about Manage Comics and how it works.

My plan, like everything else with Manage Comics, was to build the guide when the first person asked for it. That day came, and I started writing. Continue reading “Auto Responders with Mail Chimp – Revisited”

Storytelling is a Powerful Content Tool

Storytelling in an era of echo chambers

It was a Saturday morning, I was just sitting on my couch when my phone pinged to let me know an email had arrived. I put down my coffee and looked at the notification. It was my friend Jonathan, and the subject had one word. “Help.”

“I’ve been posting online for a month now and I’m not getting any traction at all. I don’t have a bunch of money to put into ad words, and people tell me that I’ve helped them in the past. Why can’t I get any traction online? It seems like everyone is shouting and nobody is listening,” he asked.

He was right, I struggled with how blunt I was going to be, I saw the problem – the reason nobody was reading Jonathan’s posts was that they were boring, unoriginal, and had no unique point of view.

“You’re right, Jonathan, Twitter often feels like a big, vast echo chamber. The idea is to present a unique point of view in a way nobody else is doing it. You’ve got some awesome insights, but you’re fighting against the big guys, they’re louder, there’s more of them, and they aren’t afraid to post constantly. You seem afraid to actually take a position, so you’re showing two sides to the story when we both know one of them is right and the other is wrong. Let’s meet for a beer (my treat) and we’ll put together a plan.”

What Jonathan needed was to tell a story, he didn’t need to “share his unique value proposition.” We sat down for an hour, and I explained to him how storytelling works.

Continue reading “Storytelling is a Powerful Content Tool”

How to Come Up With Content Ideas

Where to Get Content Ideas

This is the third post on content marketing that I’ve written, the previous ones “Getting Started in Content Marketing“, and “How to Write Content that Helps Find Your Customers” were about the process, this one is about the actual writing and how we come up with our ideas here at NorthIQ.

The number one thing that stops people from content marketing is that they are afraid they’ll run out of things to say. I’ve been writing semi-professionally in some way or another since 1997, I’ve had a personal blog for pretty much that entire time. I’ve never run out of things to say.

I’ve got a few simple rules for what I write, and I find that following those rules gives me good stuff to write about. Continue reading “How to Come Up With Content Ideas”

How to Write Content That Helps Find Your Customers

Content That Finds Customers

We have previously written about “Getting Started in Content Marketing” where we discussed content strategy, and what you want to get out of the experience of content marketing, where you will send people, what channels you’ll market with, how to format your postings, and how you’ll know you’re successful.

In our NorthIQ Smarter Business Guide we talk about figuring out who your customers are and creating personas around them.

Today we’re going to discuss how you can use content marketing to find your customers. Continue reading “How to Write Content That Helps Find Your Customers”

Simple Rules for Writing on the Web

Zombies and Giant Fluffy Kittens

When you’re writing on the web, you need to think about your what your message is, and how you will tell your story. A great idea with poor execution will fail. Great execution with a bad idea will fail. You need both a great idea with an amazing “hook,” and you need to execute on that idea well.

Well-written content will be read by more people, more often, and will be shared more than poorly written content.

There’s a few simple rules you can follow to make your writing better. Continue reading “Simple Rules for Writing on the Web”

Getting Started in Content Marketing

Content Marketing Journal

Communication is the key weapon in any marketer’s toolbox. Content Marketing is a trendy term now. Companies and people are using high quality content to get more traffic, and to build more leads. In order to effectively content market you need to understand the basic principles of communication that will get your content noticed.

Before you even get started in content marketing there are several things you need to have ready. Continue reading “Getting Started in Content Marketing”

Good Video Makes You Look Good

NorthIQ Videos

Before I was an internet superhero, I learned how to be a TV producer. I spent three years learning how to make good video. After my education, I did some work in music videos, and I worked at a world renowned Canadian Sports Network for a decade where I got hired because I knew how to use a computer, and I understood the principles of good video.

Most of the video on the internet sucks, and it makes me sad for the people who are making it. To be completely open, I have a much higher bar than the average person. I’ve used cameras worth tens of thousands of dollars, have had access to wireless mic setups worth thousands of dollars and used high end editing machines. Continue reading “Good Video Makes You Look Good”

How to Create an Autoresponder That Delivers a Download…for Free

Mailchimp

Automation is a marketing trick that can seem like magic, but just like anything, there is a very simple recipe you can follow to make it happen. Automation reduces the amount of work that you have to do in order to reach out to every new lead, and it helps to create an instant connection to your brand, because you are immediately reaching back.

One of the most valuable things you can do is offer compelling content that provides insane value. We do this with our How to Make Your Business Smarter guide, and by following these simple steps, you can do the same thing we do! Continue reading “How to Create an Autoresponder That Delivers a Download…for Free”

Inspiration from The Archangel Summit

Archangel Summit

On Wednesday September 21st, we had the opportunity to attend the Archangel Summit at the Sony Centre in Toronto Ontario.  This was the first time we had heard of the Archangel group, but we were attracted to the event due to the amazing line up of guest speakers, and the promise to be added to an exclusive Facebook group, and some really cool extras. Continue reading “Inspiration from The Archangel Summit”