How to Create a Free Website using WordPress

How to Create a Free Website using WordPress

Many sites allow you to create a free website or a blog without writing a single line of coding. However, WordPress stands out due to an easy user interface, feature-loaded framework, a vast community of developers, and search engine friendly pages. This article acts as a guide to help you get started with your first blog or a website.

  1. Visit: https://wordpress.com/
  2. Click on Get StartedCreate a Free site with WordPress
  3. Fill in the fields appropriately. (You can also skip this step)
  4. Enter a few keywords or name to check which one is available. Try it until you get your favorite name. Then click on “Select” button in Free plan.How to create a free blog using WordPress

5. Click on “Start with Free.”Free WordPress Site

6. Enter your email id, username, and password. (You can choose a username that is different from your domain name.)

WordPress Site Pricing Plan

7. You will receive a confirmation email. Confirm your email id, and login into your WordPress dashboard.

8. Congratulations! your first site is ready. You can now use relevant links in the left panel to add new pages, blog posts, or customize the design of your site. Free WordPress Site Dashboard

WordPress is equipped with various powerful features. You need to invest some time and explore them. I advise you to take one step at a time to avoid confusion. Start with writing your first post about your favorite topic and share it on social media. With time, you can improve the design, add new pages, and include more features.

Want to learn more about WordPress website development? Check out the following blogs:

How to create a responsive website?

How to register a domain name on GoDaddy? 

A guide to buy a server or web hosting?

How to install WordPress on your web server?

How to change design and layout of a site: Working with WordPress themes

Do you still have questions? Write them into comments, and I will help you develop your first site effortlessly.

Viewly vs. Vimeo vs. Youtube: The Ultimate Face-off

Viewly vs. Vimeo vs. Youtube: The Ultimate Face-off

Creativity and entertainment walk hand-in-hand! With the internet connecting the world, people everywhere can now create, share, and showcase their ideas with the power of numerous online technology platforms. Video content platforms make for a big chunk of this internet industry. They are now part and parcel of our lives. But this domain is evolving dramatically.

With every flourishing technology comes the instincts to monetize it. And, middlemen pop-up reaping substantial profits. Same is the case with popular video content platforms. Recent changes in the Youtube’s monetization policy hit the video creators hard. This centralized action needs to be addressed. In this post, we will take a look at the autocracy and democracy paradigms of the video content tech-platforms. It is the ultimate face-off between Viewly, Vimeo, and Youtube!

The Autocratic paradigm!

Autocracy simply means that absolute power lies with a single person or an organization. A dictatorship if you may! And platforms like Youtube, Vimeo, Amazon Prime, etc. are central platforms with total control of the content lying with them. However, these popular video publishing platforms have entertained us for long. The creatives beg to differ. Why so? Here are the reasons;

  • Unjust monetary distributions: Video creators and content developers power this industry. But central platforms give them only a fraction of revenue in return. While creative professionals deliver the most value to such platforms, they are often struggling to make the money they deserve. And, their monetization is only limited to ad revenues, without any direct contribution or connection with the audience to support their work!
  • Costly content delivery: It is a herculean task to deliver video and creative content globally. The cost of this expensive operation is loaded on the shoulders of the content creators. High-performing content creators usually have to pay for hosting and storage of their content.
  • Unwanted ads: Autocratic video platforms worship ad networks. The reason is that they get revenue from them. This relationship creates a diminished user experience for people, often bombarding them with irrelevant and annoying ads. This becomes a challenge for the creatives as well as their audience with platform keeping the most of the revenue.

Solution? A democratic Blockchain video platform

Enter Viewly! A democratic video publishing platform at its core that is powered by the revolutionary Blockchain technology. Viewly has stepped up to address the fundamental challenges faced by the video content creators and the viewing audience. Viewly is a decentralized social video content platform that empowers the creatives to share their content with their audience freely. The users here can support the work of their favorite video creators with the micro-payments ecosystem. The control of the platform belongs to the users, and the currency used here for incentives is called ‘VIEW.’

Here is why Blockchain platforms like View.ly are the future of video content & entertainment;

  • Peer-to-peer content delivery: Viewly uses a Peer-to-peer content delivery network to connect video creators with their audience. Not only this reduces the cost of video content delivery, but also utilizes redundant (extra) resources of the users and incentivize them with VIEW tokens.
  • No ads: Since Viewly is a Blockchain platform, the users, and the content creators are directly connected. An absence of the middle-men means no ads are required to generate the revenue in such an ecosystem! It automatically translates into a win-win situation for both the viewers and the content developers.
  • Direct Support: With vote-based tipping, recurring payments from fans, and business endorsements, video content creators on Viewly get the real value for their talent! Unlike the unfavorable policies of platforms like Youtube, Vimeo, etc., Viewly’s revenue flows through a Blockchain mechanism. One can start earning right away even with a small audience. As a content creator, you make money as long as you add value to your audience.

How is Viewly’s ICO doing?

Well, View.ly has already achieved 66 percent (US$8m) of their ICO sales goal (US$12m) in VIEW token pre-sales at this point. While this post is being drafted, only 9 minutes are left for its Token sales to go live. It seems that the platform will reach its goal easily.

But how about its future?

Viewly incentivizes the users to pool their bandwidth and data storage resources to power the P2P content delivery network. Content creators get rewards and support from their audience. There are no annoying ads. The users are the decision makers. The preceding statements make one thing very clear. That democracy is a form of freedom cherished by all. A system where everyone wins for adding fair value to it is the choice of the masses. Blockchain technology has allowed us to embed this paradigm in the technological domains too.

This is a nascent point to figure out if Blockchain video publishing platforms like Viewly will surpass giants like Youtube, Vimeo, Metacafe, or Amazon Prime. But one thing is definite. The future of human technology lies in decentralizing them to deliver value to the masses. Democracy has always trumped Autocracy!

Are You a Nocoiner?

Are You a Nocoiner?

According to Urban Dictionary, a nocoiner is a person who doesn’t hold bitcoin. However, the meaning of term “nocoiner” has evolved in the past few months. Being a nocoiner is all about the sanctimonious attitude of those who don’t hold bitcoin towards those who have bought bitcoin. It means you are not necessarily a nocoiner if bitcoin doesn’t form a part of your investment portfolio.

Nocoiners are those who didn’t buy bitcoin at a low price (thinking it is a scam) and are now bitter about missing out the opportunity. Nocoiners are usually well-educated professionals like economists, investors, socialists, lawyers, etc. who play an essential role in spearheading discussions around new asset classes.

What makes nocoiners a nocoiner?

  • Nocoiners think that there is no use case of blockchain technology or bitcoin
  • They keep telling you that bitcoins have no underlying asset, so one day it will crash, and your entire investment will be equal to zero
  • Some of the nocoiners believe (or pretend to believe) that bitcoin is beneficial only for criminals, scammers, and terrorists due to its anonymity
  • They frequently remind you the outcome of dot-com bubble and tell you that blockchain technology will see a similar fate (but they won’t discuss how the internet has changed the economies)

To put it simply, nocoiners are full of what psychologists call “ressentiment.” La  Wik defined ressentiment as “a reassignment of the pain that accompanies a sense of one’s own inferiority/failure onto an external scapegoat.”

My take on nocoiners

Nocoiners are similar to frustrated fringe elements (minus violence) who couldn’t find a partner but preach that teen or premarital sex is immoral. They are also like wannabe riches who couldn’t muster the courage to take risks or put themselves into the grind but claim (without any evidence) that all rich men have acquired wealth through unethical or illegal means. The critical lesson from the dot-com bubble was that we shouldn’t accept all technologists’ or tech commentators’ claims unchallenged. Instead, we should keep our eyes and mind open, think beyond the quarterly results of listed companies, look beyond media hype, and question our assumptions about how the economy and technology works. More importantly, learn to differentiate beautiful horses (like bitcoin or world wide web) from the flies buzzing around their rear end (like Mt. Gox, Pets.com, etc.).

In Marc Hochstein words, “you don’t have to hold or even like bitcoin. Just don’t be a nocoiner.”

(Image credit: Reddit)

SEO Strategy in 2018 – White Hat Techniques that drive long term results

SEO Strategy in 2018 – White Hat Techniques that drive long term results

What is SEO?

SEO or Search Engine Optimization is a process of promoting your website so that it ranks higher on search engines such as Google, Bing or Yahoo. Since Google is the most widely used search engine, the prime objective of SEO is to rank your website on 1st page of a Google search for particular keywords. Simply put, SEO is a technique to ensure that websites are ranked amongst top 10 results on Google for particular keywords. The exercise is aimed at increasing the traffic to your website and creating awareness about your brand. It is a cost-effective and long term internet marketing technique which amplifies your revenue over a period of time.

How do we achieve best results through affordable SEO services?

SEO Audit

We do a comprehensive SEO audit of your website to understand the current scenario. This is what a typical SEO audit looks like:

1Domain AgeX Years Y Months
2Meta tag optimization Need to be optimized
3Title TagTitle has 82 characters but it should be up to 60 Characters
4Keyword TagThere are 15 keywords in this tag but it should be 5-6 specific and targeted keywords
5Description TagDescription tag limit is 160 characters, but it has 226 characters
6URL StructureFine
7Image optimizationImages are optimized
8H1, H2, H3 TagNot present
9Robots.txt fileonly h4 tag Present on the website – Needs to be optimized
10Canonical issuePresent
11XML sitemapCanonical issue found
12HTML sitemapPresent
13Google Analytics CodePresent
14Social ButtonsPresent
15404 Error Present
16W3C validation65 Errors, 42 warning(s)
http://validator.w3.org/check?uri=http%3A%2F%2Fmvpboxing.com
%2F&charset=%28detect+automatically%29&doctype=Inline&group=0
17BackLinksThis Page has 0 backlinks from External domains and 0 from Internal.

Keyword Planning

Keyword planning is the most critical stage of any SEO strategy. It is imperative to devote adequate time and efforts to choose the best keywords for your website. This will help in achieving higher ranks on search engines like Google for relevant keywords. If done incorrectly, the end results of SEO can be disastrous even if your site ranks well on Google temporarily.

The Adwords Keyword planner, an extended feature provided by Google, assists in finalising the foremost keywords for your website. Keywords should be chosen bearing in mind factors such as sufficient search volume, business relevance which in turn helps in producing tangible business value in the long run.

Our keywords planning look comprises the following elements:

KeywordAvg. Monthly Searches (exact match only)Competition
email marketing181000.97
ppc advertising29000.96
logo design905000.95
Website design495000.95
web development99000.94
app development99000.94
Mobile Development16000.94
professional logo design10000.93
software development services2100.92
content writing16000.91
digital marketing agency54000.91
business card design121000.89
SEO Services121000.89
Creative logo design2600.89
brochure design66000.88
online reputation management services4800.87
press releases36000.83
graphic design905000.81
research paper writing1400.81
Online marketing company8800.8
corporate identity design3900.76
visiting card design1100.75
Internet Marketing Company16000.75
Internet marketing services8800.74
ux ui design4800.74
corporate brochure design1700.74
Digital marketing experts1400.71

On-Page SEO:

On-page SEO plays a crucial role in the overall ranking process. Our On-page SEO services are aimed at ensuring your website appears to have good authority within the given industry. It also helps users identify your products and services quickly. This is, of course, done in strict compliance with the Google guidelines.

Our On-Page SEO services are an intrinsic mix of the following:

On-Page SEO Services
Title Tag
Meta Description
Meta Keywords
Content Optimization
XML Site Map creation & Submission
URL Structure
Anchor text & Internal Link Structure
Image & Alt tag Optimization
Broken link fixing
Duplicate content fixing
301 Redirect
H1, H2, H3 tag Optimization
Robots.txt file creation
Canonical Issue Testing
HTML Sitemap
Google Analytics Configuration
Google Search Console Configuration
404 Error page
Website speed
HTML/CSS/Java Script Code Analysis

Off-Page SEO :

This is ‘The Differentiator’ of our services in the SEO process and proves to be the most critical in ensuring long term benefits to our clients.

Through this part of the optimization process, Google is able to measure the relevance of your website in the respective industry, thereby, providing higher ranks in the results page.

SEO results need to be watched closely and frequently to measure output in terms of actual execution.

We do not resort to quick-fix SEO techniques which may result to higher ranking easily, as resorting to such unethical practices can lead to removal of the website from the search engine forever. Once removed, it is next to impossible to bring a website back on top of Google search results in the foreseeable future. This makes off-page optimization not only crucial but also a critical factor in the SEO process.

Our off-page SEO involves:

Off-Page Activites
Search Engine Submission
Social Media Pages Creation and Promotion
Bookmarking
Link Building
Article Submission
Web 2.0 Creation and Submission
Blog Promotion
PR Submission
Forum and Blog Commenting
Directory Submission
Guest Post Writing
Video Submission
Social Media Activities
Classified Posting
Image Submission
Forum Participation

A sound, long term white-hat technique may take up to three months or more to bring about the desired results but pays handsome dividends in the due course. Though tangible results take time surface, clients can measure the progress by the improved keyword rankings, on a weekly basis. We have achieved tremendous long term results by applying these techniques for our clients. Mentioned below is some of our work:

Case Study

Duration: 6 months

Our client’s sites were constructed on WordPress/PHP/Codeignitor. We were given 20 high-competitive keywords for which we had to make the website appear on first page of Google. After an SEO campaign run for 4-6 months, we were able to achieve almost 45 keywords (including 20 agreed keywords) on 1st page of Google. Today, even after 3 years, the rankings have not been affected despite several web spam updates by Google. This is the kind of output every webmaster should look for while preparing a comprehensive long-term SEO strategy.

SEO Results 1 SEO Results2 SEO Results3 SEO Results4 SEO Results5

SEO Results6 SEO Results7

Lead Generation Strategies and an Action Plan for Recruitment Companies

Lead Generation Strategies and an Action Plan for Recruitment Companies

Recruitment companies face three critical challenges in acquiring new clients: intense competition, lack of differentiation in pricing and services, and a lack of exclusivity (the practice of having multiple vendors working for the same client). Most of the placement agencies’ owners depend on personal connections and references from the existing clients to generate leads. These methods may be useful in acquiring a few clients in the long term. However, it is time-consuming and highly unscalable.

The revenue or growth of the organization will be limited by the personal connection of its proprietors. Therefore, branding and innovative lead generation strategy are necessary to create more vendor empanelment opportunities.  Fortunately, the internet has created endless possibilities for everyone including the HR and recruitment organizations. You can use various elements of digital marketing to generate high value leads for your recruitment business.

In this blog, we have covered five lead generation strategies and a 10-week action plan to generate more leads for your recruitment company. Some of these strategies deliver results in the long run while others produce instant results.

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Lead Generation Strategy for Placement Agencies

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Five Lead Generation Strategies for a Recruitment Business

1. Offline Events

Attend offline events to expand your network. Integrate it with your email and social media strategies as discussed in the next section. The internet will play the role of an enabler or a catalyst in fructifying your offline plan. Don’t sell yourself or your services in the events. Talk to as many people as possible and build a personal rapport. Add them to LinkedIn, collect their email ids and start following them on Twitter. Initiate a conversation (online or offline) once in a while to engage with them without selling your services.

Generate Leads Offline Events

2. Email Marketing

HR heads (or more precisely Talent Acquisition heads) receive a lot of emails from recruiters and HR software solution providers on a daily basis. Sending a sales pitch to random HR professionals will not lead to meaningful results. In fact, it hampers the reputation of email senders. The last thing you will want is to be known as spammers in the close-knit HR community. Thus, you need to build an email strategy carefully to develop and expand personal relationships.

The biggest challenge in implementing a successful email marketing campaign is generating a list of relevant email ids. Attending offline events and connecting with more people on social media will give you a heads up on making an email list.
Posting relevant contents such as latest news, HR trends, interesting blogs, etc. will fetch more readers. Add an email subscription form on your website and integrate with an email marketing or lead generation software such as MailChimp or Optin Monster. Over time, you will build an excellent email list.
Create a separate list of candidates whom you have placed in your clients’ organizations. Stay in touch with both, the successful candidates as well as the clients.

Start sending a weekly or a monthly newsletter to your subscribers, social and personal connections. Don’t send more than four email newsletters in a month. Creating a system to send personalized birthday or festival greetings will particularly be helpful in nurturing the relationships. A recruitment business is all about building meaningful relationships, and email marketing serve precisely the same purpose.

3. LinkedIn and Twitter

As a recruiter, you know the value of LinkedIn more than anyone else. Be more innovative on LinkedIn to acquire clients. Make your LinkedIn experience more meaningful and productive.
You may add connections from the industries which you currently serve. Be location specific so that you can meet prospects to pitch for vendor empanelment. Many times, clients look for local vendors for close collaboration while hiring for critical positions. Thus, connect with HR Professionals or CXOs only from a particular location and industry for better results in fewer efforts.

Twitter may not be useful in generating leads. However, it is an excellent platform to engage with industry leaders and initiate meaningful conversations. If you can spend at least 10 minutes a day on Twitter, it will help you in building a meaningful rapport with talent acquisition heads from top companies.

4. Google Adwords

Very few recruitment firms use Google Adwords to promote their services. Their biggest fear is of getting irrelevant clicks from job seekers. Of course, it is tough to ensure that your ads will be clicked only by clients and not job seekers. However, in my experience, Google Adwords is an effective marketing tool to generate leads for placement consultancy organizations. You need to monitor your campaign, use negative keywords and optimize it on a regular basis to ensure that the ads get clicked by potential clients. You can also run Display Ads campaign on select publishers and websites which serves to HR professionals. Remember that if you want to use Google Adwords, then you need to spend significant time to monitor the campaigns. It is advised to hire Google certified Adwords expert to run the paid campaigns.

Use following techniques to generate better results:

  • Create industry and location specific campaigns
  • Focus on long tail keywords
  • Update the list of negative keywords on a regular basis
  • Write Ad copy that depicts that it is meant only for employers
  • Run Google Adwords campaign for at least 30 days to evaluate its effectiveness

5. Search Engine Optimization

SEO works in the long-term. You need to invest time, energy and money and patiently wait for six to twelve months to see the impact. However, the results of SEO are exceptional. You may get inquiries from international companies and reputed brand names (of course you must have the capability to meet the requirements). If you provide HR services such as RPO (Recruitment Process Outsourcing), Temp Staffing, Entry level hiring and bulk hiring solutions, then the SEO should be the most crucial element of your marketing strategy. It also helps you in getting more clients from startup and growing SMEs community.

Quick SEO tips to rank faster:

  • Each page of your site should have at least 1000 Words
  • Use LSI method to make content more user as well as SEO friendly
  • Never write generic content – If you are a startup, do write more about skills and experience of founders. But avoid writing generic stuff.
  • Work on long tail keywords which will be used by client to search for specific HR services
  • Industry and Location specific keywords
  • Write Guest Posts
  • Publish high-quality blogs on a regular basis

Implementing all five strategies at one point in time will be difficult for small recruitment firms and startups. Outsourcing all these activities to a qualified agency may also be an expensive proposition. Thus, prioritize your goals, set a budget (in terms of time and money), and work on any two strategies at a time which can fit into the budget. Remember that until you have a sound strategy in place, no amount of efforts will deliver an optimum result. Thus it is crucial to have a sound strategy and an action plan ready before you start promoting your business.

Generic Action Plan for Marketing or Promoting recruitment services

Digital marketing can become overwhelming and confusing if you don’t plan it properly and implement it step by step. A lot of business owners and marketers start with great enthusiasm but soon lose motivation after discovering the sea of tasks that need to be done to achieve even average results. Here is a generic Action Plan that will guide you to implement a digital marketing campaign successfully without creating a big hole in your pocket or putting you through the stress of managing time between your core business and digital marketing.

Week 1 – Create and Document a Strategy

Create and document a digital marketing strategy for your recruitment firm. No internet marketing efforts will ever be successful until it creates value for the target audience. So, build a plan around your users and not around your business. The strategy should include at least the following items:

  • The objective and goals of the campaign
  • Budget
  • Identification of a distinct target audience
  • Media Mix
  • Resource Requirements
  • Action plan with a predetermined timeline
  • Measurement metrics
  • Campaign optimization plan

Document your strategy 2-3 pages. You may also hire an internet marketing consultant or a writer to do this for you.

Week 2 – Selection of Keywords

Select keywords for which you want to optimize your website for search engines. This step is essential even if you don’t plan to do SEO in the future. So spend significant time on this activity and shortlist a list of a few relevant keywords.

Week 3 – On-site Checklist

Ensure that your site must have the following

  • Word count on every page (except “Contact Us” or similar pages) – at least 1000 Words
  • The website content should reflect your expertise. Don’t put generic content (you can check the relevance of content by replacing your company name with a random Name XYZ. By changing a company name if the information doesn’t become incorrect or irrelevant, the content is generic.
  • Optimize Title tags, meta description, and Image alt-tag optimization
  • Inclusion of Site Map on the website
  • Integration of Google Analytics, Webmaster tool and Social media sites with the website
  • “Contact Us” form is working correctly – Check where do you receive the data, when a user generates an inquiry
  • Integration of Newsletter Subscription form
  • A blog section is must on the site

Week 4 – Work on the budget for six months

Decide a budget for six months. Think how much money you are ready to spend over next six month even if you don’t get any results. (Setting the expectation is critical in deciding the budget. No marketing activity has ever guaranteed results. However, all skilled marketers know that every penny spent on marketing activities never goes waste). Plan your resources according to the budget.

I am dedicating one full week to this activity as the tasks which need to be executed in Week 1 & Week 2 may get extended in Week 3. Thus putting extra time here will keep your schedule intact.

Week 5 – Pick up two marketing activities and create a mini-plan for one week

In business, a lot of unexpected things happen within a short span of time. So, we can’t plan accurately for more than a few days. If you have just started with digital marketing, then it is advisable to prepare your schedule for a week and execute it properly. At the end of the week, you will get an idea of how much bandwidth and money you need to perform a task properly. I recommend that in the beginning you plan only those activities which can be implemented by spending 30 minutes a day.  Keep in mind that you have many other things to do. So you can’t dedicate more than half an hour in one particular activity on a regular basis.

Recommendations – Start with LinkedIn and SEO if you are a beginner.

Week 6 – Adjust your targets for Week 5 and optimize your schedule

Based on the work done in the previous week, you need to adjust your target for this week. It must be achievable despite all the uncertainties and exigencies that may come up as a part of the business.  Optimize your schedule to boost your productivity. Research for tools which can improve your efficiency.

Week 7 – Workforce Planning

By now, you will have a better understanding of the manhours required to do various tasks. At this point, you also need to make a decision about whether you want to hire a dedicated staff or outsource the work to a qualified digital marketing agency. Hiring a new employee can add to your fix expenses and management workload. Outsourcing is the best way to get more work done at a faster pace. However, you need to spend some time in selecting the right agency and communicating your vision to them appropriately. You may also need to make adjustments in the budget at this stage.

Week 8 – Check the Site’s Performance

Check site’s performance with Google Analytics and Search Console tools. Set a performance target for next four months. It will help you monitor the outcome. Remember that your clients go through a purchase journey before hiring a placement agency. You need to assist your potential leads at every stage of their purchase journey. Thus, you need to create relevant and fresh content (through blog section) to educate your customers and help them make informed decisions. Also, don’t expect the results in just a few weeks of work. It requires time and efforts to capture the attention of your target audience during the different stages of the purchase process.

Monitor the following metric to evaluate the digital marketing efforts (it is the bare minimum, the actual parameters depend on your business objectives):

  • Unique Visitors
  • No of email subscribers
  • Bounce Rate
  • Time spent by users on your site
  • Most visited pages

Week 9 – It is time to go aggressive

By now, you would have a fair understanding of time and efforts required to achieve a particular marketing goal. Now is the time to set outrageous goals and pursue them aggressively. Accelerate the efforts and make sure that quality is compromised in the pursuit of chase the quantity. 80% of the businesses give up on their digital marketing efforts by the time they reach this stage. So, now is the time when you strengthen your resolve to continue the digital marketing efforts.

Week 10 – Pursue Excellence

Rome was not built in a day. So don’t expect everything to be all right so soon. Monitor the performance, identify gaps and optimize your campaign to bridge these gaps. Don’t fear to be original and take risks. Take feedback from your employees, customers, and partners, and build further on what you already have. Remember that the Facebook and Google products have gone through numerous revisions to become what we see today. So, pursue excellence and improve your performance every day. Keep optimizing the resources and improving efficiency. Over time, it will help you achieve more in fewer efforts.

This basic framework will help your recruitment firm build a solid web presence. The results will entirely depend on the teams’ creativity and vision. The power of the internet is limited only by your imagination. So, be original, persistent, creative, and imaginative while pursuing your marketing goals, and you will accomplish outstanding results. Being in an intensely competitive and highly undifferentiated market, it may take some time before the audience starts noticing you. However, once they do, there is no looking back.

Did I miss something? Do you a better formula for digital marketing success for recruitment firms? Share it in the comments, and I will include the same in the blog when it is updated next time.

Enjoyed reading the post? Share it with your community and do your bit to make this world a better place to live, earn and grow!

Guest Posting Sites

Guest Posting Sites

Guest posting sites are useful for marketers, writers and bloggers to gain exposure and boost their SEO efforts. Guest blogging provides an opportunity to share your experiences and insights with a targeted audience. If you write unique and quality contents and share them on top blog submission sites, then you see a gradual increase in your referral traffic over time. You will also get quality DoFollow or NoFollow backlinks from the best blog sites which are extremely helpful in improving search engine ranking of your site. Selection of right guest posting sites is the first step towards achieving better marketing results.

How to Select the Best Guest Posting Sites

The most critical factor in choosing blog submission sites is their target audience. Create a list of blog sites that cater to a niche audience which is similar to your customers. Many experts suggest that you should choose sites based on their Page Rank (PR) and Domain Authority (DA). However, I firmly believe that a backlink from a low PR and DA site that generates relevant traffic is significantly better than those from high PR and DA sites which yield no or little traffic. Also, quality of content and user engagement are other critical factors that determine your success in guest posting.

Here is a list of guest posting sites where I have successfully posted blogs on behalf of our clients:

Note – We have a huge list of blog sites and it is hard to put them all in one go. Thus, I will keep adding sites in this list on a regular basis. Contact Us to get a list of 1000 blogs that accept guest posts.

Huff Post

Category – News, Media, Miscellaneous
DA – 98
Guideline – Send a Blog
Word Limit – 500 Words
Our Sample Post – Promote B2B Niche Businesses
Difficulty Level – Extreme
Send your post directly to the Editor for review. They may take 2-3 weeks to respond if the post gets approved. 

Entrepreneur

Category – News, Media, Miscellaneous
DA – 93
Guideline – Guideline
Word Limit – 700 Words
Our Sample Post – Email Marketing Tweaks
Difficulty Level – Extreme
Apply Here! They select contributors based on their profiles.

Crazz Egg

Category – Marketing, Copywriting
DA – 86
Guideline –  Propose Three Headlines
Word Limit – 800 Words
Our Sample Post – Influencer Marketing
Difficulty Level – Hard
If they like your headlines and approach, they make come up with a list of titles that you can choose from.

SEMrush

Category – Digital Marketing
DA – 83
Guideline – Guideline
Word Limit – 750 Words
Our Sample Post – Advanced Facebook Marketing
Difficulty Level – Moderate
Pitch Your Idea to the Editor first before sending the final content. You may get a few brownie points by praising SEMrush tool.

Small Biz Trends

Category – Small Business, Marketing, Finance
DA – 82
Guideline – Guideline
Word Limit – 700 Words
Our Sample Post –  Increase Conversion Rates
Difficulty Level – Hard
Send an email request to experts@smallbiztrends.net. Include the following items – Your industry or field of expertise. Two or three topics, your website link,a sample of your writing.

Capterra

Category – News, Media, Miscellaneous
DA – 74
Guideline – Pitch an Idea
Word Limit – 1000 Words
Our Sample Post – Marketing Automation
Difficulty Level – Moderate
Content must be epic. They usually respond in a week. However, your article might get published 4-8 weeks. 

Smart Insights

Category – Digital Marketing
DA – 81
Guideline – Contact
Word Limit – 700 Words
Our Sample Post – Marketing Trends for Niche Businesses
Difficulty Level – Moderate
Send your post directly to the Editor for review. They may take 2-3 weeks to respond if the post gets approved. 

BuzzFeed

Category – News, Media, Miscellaneous
DA – 93
Guideline – Post Your Buzz
Word Limit – 1000 Words
Our Sample Post – How Students Perform Better
Difficulty Level – Easy
You can directly post your content. However, only quality content gets featured on the main site. 

Business2Community

Category – Small Business, Marketing, Miscellaneous
DA – 81
Guideline – Guideline
Word Limit – 300 Words
Our Sample Post – Generating Sales without Spending on Ads
Difficulty Level – Easy
Apply Here! They may take 2-4 weeks or even more to approve your profile. 

Torque

Category – WordPress
DA – 53
Guideline – Guideline
Word Limit – 500 Words
Our Sample Post – Email Plugins
Difficulty Level – Easy
To contribute, send your titles to editor@torquemag.io! Please include 2-3 sentences summarizing the topic you wish to write about.They will respond in a week. Your article may be published in 4-6 weeks. 

All Top Startups

Category – Startups
DA – 43
Guideline – Guideline
Word Limit – 500 Words
Our Sample Post – Succeed in a Competetive Market
Difficulty Level – Easy
If approved, your article will get published within two weeks of submission 

B2B Marketing

Category – B2B
DA – 71
Guideline – Guideline
Word Limit – 700 Words
Our Sample Post – Pricing Strategies
Difficulty Level – Moderate
Apply Here

Tweak Your Biz

Category – Miscellaneous
DA – 57
Guideline – Guideline
Word Limit – 1000 Words
Our Sample Post – Things to do after Publishing a Guest Post
Difficulty Level – Moderate
They respond in 3-4 weeks. Subject to approval, your blog may be published in after 3-4 weeks of submission

Digital Information World

Category – Digital Marketing
DA – 52
Guideline – Guideline
Word Limit – 2500 Words
Our Sample Post – Social Media Trends
Difficulty Level – Moderate
Expect a response in 2-3 weeks. They now charge $10 for each submission to check spam.

Motivation Grid

Category – Miscellaneous
DA – 38
Guideline – Guideline
Word Limit – 1200 Words
Our Sample Post – Start Your Business
Difficulty Level – Easy
Quick Response. 

eLearning Industry

Category – News, Media, Miscellaneous
DA – 73
Guideline – Guideline
Word Limit – 700 Words
Our Sample Post – Knowledge Transfer
Difficulty Level – Easy
2-3 Weeks of Response Time 

Onrec

Category – HR
DA – 55
Guideline – Contact
Word Limit – 500 Words
Our Sample Post – Skills for Recruiters
Difficulty Level – Easy
Contact editor with 2-3 titles and you will get a quick response. 

Dumb Little Man

Category – Miscellaneous
DA – 63
Guideline –
Word Limit – 800 Words
Our Sample Post – Career Killers
Difficulty Level – Moderate
Publishing Time – 2 Weeks. 

Personal Growth

Category – News, Media, Miscellaneous
DA – 33
Guideline –  Guideline
Word Limit – 500 Words
Our Sample Post – Life long Learning
Difficulty Level – Easy
Subject to approval, the article may get published in 4-5 weeks

Teacher Cast

Category – News, Media, Miscellaneous
DA – 48
Guideline –  Guideline
Word Limit – 700 Words
Our Sample Post – G-Suite for Education
Difficulty Level – Easy
Quick response. The article may get published within 2 weeks of submission 

How to Choose a Right Digital Marketing Agency?

How to Choose a Right Digital Marketing Agency?

A digital marketing agency helps its clients develop marketing strategies and build campaigns to deliver tangible business results. Since every business is different, they require a unique approach to internet marketing. Although most of the agencies claim to provide customized services, not all of them possess the expertise or have the bandwidth to walk the talk. However, there are a lot of digital marketing firms which create a real difference to their clients’ businesses through a sound strategy and its flawless execution.

As a business owner, how will you choose the right agency which is the best fit for your organization?

Here are some tips which can help you spot the right company:

Bigger is not always better

The safest way to choose an agency is to select the industry leaders. However, the majority of businesses can’t afford their budget. Moreover, their style of working may not be compatible for small and medium size businesses. Ideally, you need to find the agencies which can become an integral part of your internal team.

Thus, your focus should be the “right fit” and not the big name.  Hire a firm which has a flexible approach and ready to adopt your style of working.

Know your requirements

Define your objectives of hiring an online marketing company. The objectives could be to increasing traffic, generating more leads, improving search engine visibility, social media branding, etc. You may even require all of these. However, you need to prioritize the goals and define your immediate as well as long-term requirements.

Also, define the outcomes which must be delivered by the agency to justify the investments.  If you don’t know your requirements, then it is good to state this clearly to the agencies and ask them to come up with a plan based on whatever you have in your mind.

How to find agencies

Searching on Google is the most obvious way to find out companies. You can also find a plenty of digital marketing firms on freelance marketplaces such as UpWork, Freelancer, Guru, PPH, etc. Since most of these platforms offer a rating system, you can easily find out the work history and track record for the digital marketing firms. However, you must follow a due diligence process before hiring freelancers or agencies on these platforms as the ratings can be easily manipulated. Also, a lot of entities on these platforms are one-man shops who outsource the task to local freelancers. Thus, many times you may get an inferior quality work despite choosing a high-rated freelancer or an agency. Follow the tips mentioned in this article to scrutinize the firms before hiring and don’t go just by their rating on the platform.

Shortlist two to three firms

Always shortlist two to three companies before making a final decision. Compare their quotes, activities and expected outcomes. Don’t make price the only criterion to compare two agencies. Cheap marketing services are usually quite expensive for the clients.

Ask Questions

Ask everything that you have in mind. You can even ask a few questions related to your industry to check the company’s understanding of your business. Some of the must ask questions are:

  • Who will work on our projects? – Remember that the quality of work will be as good as the quality of people working on the project.
  • Do you outsource the work? If yes, then which part of the task is outsourced? – Avoid agencies which outsource the entire job. In fact, such companies work as brokers and hardly understand the nuances of building effective marketing campaigns.
  • How will you communicate with our internal team?
  • What all do you need to get started?
  • How much time will you take to deliver results?

Follow the Process of elimination

Use the answers to the abovementioned questions to eliminate the agencies which don’t fulfill the basic criteria such as budget, experience, deadline, etc. Some of the red flags to spot the bad apples are extremely low price, promising big results, giving unusual guarantees, not answering your questions directly, etc.

Make an agreement or contract

Once you finalize an agency, make a contract. It is important to define the terms and conditions, and activities that need to be done as a part of the campaign for achieving the expected outcomes. A written contract helps both the parties to set expectations and avoid surprises during the project. It also works as a reference document if a confusion arises in the future.

Conclusion

Choosing a vendor is not a straight line process. It requires serious deliberations among the stakeholders. While hiring an agency, do remember that you will work with the people and not with machines or software. Thus, use one rule of thumb – don’t work with agencies whose initial conversations didn’t make you comfortable.  In other words, choose an organization only if you are comfortable dealing with people who work on your project and not just with the salesman or the agency owner. The effectiveness of the campaign will entirely depend on the quality and experience of people who work on the project and not on the name or size of the agency.

SendPulse Review – An Email Marketing Platform for Everyone

SendPulse Review – An Email Marketing Platform for Everyone

At SixPL, we have got some of our prized customers through email marketing. Thus, it forms an integral part of our marketing strategy. In past few years, I have used several email marketing platforms and keep trying new ones to find out alternatives that deliver a better return on investment. Recently, I stumbled upon an email marketing platform, Sendpulse. After checking its reviews online, I used it for one of my blogs.

Here is my take on this email marketing platform:

It is Cost Effective

SendPulse is an affordable email marketing platform. You can send up to 15000 emails and store up to 2500 email contacts for free. If you have 10,000 subscribers, you can send unlimited emails to them at $53, which is cheaper than the similar email marketing platforms like Mailchimp, Sendgrid, etc. Many businesses send occasional emails and like to pay on per message basis. For sending 100,000 email messages, you need to pay $212. I think this is on a slightly higher side if you compare it with similar products from Elastic email.

However, you shouldn’t compare two email marketing products solely by prices. Deliverability, features, and ease of design also play a crucial role in choosing a right email marketing platform for your business.

Easy Template Design

I found drag and drop editor of Sendpulse quite intuitive. It doesn’t require a high learning curve even for a beginner to create attractive HTML email templates. You will also find plenty of beautiful pre-designed templates which can be used directly without much editing. If you are a beginner, the preloaded templates should be sufficient to get started with ease. You can also design great responsive email templates in minutes.

Subscription Form Builder

This is a great and most desired addition in the SendPulse email marketing platform. With the flexible subscription form builder, you will never need an HTML coder or any other software/plugin to develop attractive responsive signup forms. In addition to Name and Email, you can also add additional fields such as Mobile, gender, etc. to personalize your emails. It will help you experiment with the design and placement of subscription forms to increase your conversion rates.

Features

Today, no email marketing platform will be useful if it doesn’t have the automation features. Sendpulse has all the automation features which are needed for sending personalized email and improving conversion rates. You can send different emails based on your customers’ demography. You can also use the Scheduler to send the emails automatically based on certain rules. Use the power of email A/B testing to eliminate guess work and find out what works best for your business. Easy-to-understand and advanced reporting will be helpful in getting an actionable insight about your campaign performance.

For agencies and marketers, SendPulse offers a 100% White label product. It means that you can also use the platform to send emails on behalf of your clients without mentioning the name of SendPulse.

Conclusion

I find the platform attractive for beginners as well as for advanced email marketers. Do a need assessment for your organization and evaluate whether the features in SendPulse email marketing platform can meet your immediate needs. Get in touch with me for any query or help in integrating the platform with your existing CRM.

Take Care of Your Body. It’s is the Only Place You Have to Live.

Take Care of Your Body. It’s is the Only Place You Have to Live.

This quote by Jim Rohn epitomizes the importance of contribution of healthy lifestyle in our success.

No matter what you do or what you become, your body will always be with you. Thus, if you want to achieve anything in life, you must take care of your health. You simply need to do following two things to develop a healthy lifestyle:

  1. Develop a healthy eating habit
  2. Maintain some Physical activity on a regular basis

It will not take a lot of your time. However, consistent efforts will deliver incredible results.

Don’t wait for tomorrow. Start Now.

Three Rules of Scaling a Consulting Business

Three Rules of Scaling a Consulting Business

Scaling a business requires achieving the economy of scale while selling the products or services to a large number of customers. To achieve economy of scale, the per unit cost of output must go down as the production increases. The output of consulting firms is intangible services that vary with each project. Thus, they can’t produce standard services at a large scale. The service production and the delivery are limited by the availability of time and the skilled manpower.

Thus, the revenue of a consulting firm is a function of time, competencies and number of its employees.

Revenue of a consulting business -> f(Time) + f(Expertise)

To scale the operation and grow revenue, a service company must follow these three rules:

Rule No. 1 – Provide one Niche Service

Master a skill set and provide one service that is significantly better than the competition. It serves three purposes:

Firstly, for exceptional services, most of the clients pay a premium price. With time, the average ticket size and the margin go up which results into increase in revenue and profits.

Secondly, big brands like to work with the best in the industry. If your services are better than that of the competition, you may get an opportunity to work with the big brands. An addition of one big brand in the portfolio can increase the revenue manifold.

Finally, managing the business growth becomes simple with one service. Hiring even one or two experts in the field can provide enough bandwidth to service many more clients. Whereas with multiple services, you need to hire many professionals to service just one customer.

Rule No 2 – Track Time Spent on each activity

“You can’t manage what you can’t measure” – Peter Drucker

The revenue of consulting firms is directly linked to the number of Manhours they put to deliver a project.

Tracking time helps in pricing the services, deciding the compensation of team members, making the right commitment to the clients, and preparing a roadmap for the future of the company.

Moreover, for a five members team, even 1% improvement in productivity per person per day is a huge gain without any pain at the end of the month.

Thus, tracking time and improving efficiency goes a long way in scaling the business operations of consulting firms and increasing their top and bottom lines.

Rule No 3 – Develop three Processes – Service Delivery, Client Acquisition, and Talent Development

Processes are the bedrock of growth of any service business. Irrespective of the number of team members, an ambitious firm must develop processes and adhere to them to conduct business activities. Over time, the processes can be innovated and improved to accommodate emerging scenarios and circumstances.

Develop following three set of processes:

  • Operational Processes to deliver exceptional services
  • Business Development and Marketing Processes to acquire bigger and better customers
  • Talent Development Processes to hire, train, manage and retain employees and partners

Once developed, all team members must adhere to the processes irrespective of the size of projects or urgency of deadlines.

Explore the options to automate or outsource a part of the processes and increase your focus on core competency and business growth. It makes business growth a simple and pleasant experience.

Conclusion

Businesses which sell products take advantage of all three rules by default for scaling their operations. The service providers, on the other hand, lose focus by adding multiple services in their offerings and then struggle to maintain and improve the quality of the services. They can accelerate their revenue growth by concentrating on their core competencies and innovating in the way they deliver services.