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Brace Your Online Presence In 6 Easy Steps

Brace Your Online Presence In 6 Easy Steps

In today’s age of near internet-ubiquity, developing your brand’s online presence is key if you don’t want to be left in the dust of current marketing trends. Here are six tips to help you make sure your business creates and maintains a strong online presence.

Use Social Media To “Meet” Consumer Needs

Too often, companies will simply treat their Facebook or other social media page as just another place to post advertisements or press releases. This doesn’t realize the potential for communication with your customer base.

Allow your customers to actually communicate with your company’s social media accounts, and reach out to them when possible. You might be surprised at how much you could gain in terms of customer relations from a little back-and-forth online. Need concrete evidence? Check out this article on how JetBlue overcame the fallout of its “Valentine’s day crisis” by utilizing social media.

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Know How To “Go Mobile”

Now smartphones seem to be popping up everywhere you look; a lot of people are browsing the internet on smaller screens. If your company website only has a desktop version, it won’t look as sleek on the screen of a smartphone.

See what you can do to develop a mobile version of your website, and customers should notice your commitment to streamlining. You can still keep your regular site’s overall theme or format—just optimize and cut it down for a smaller device.

Pay For Ads A Click At A Time

Don’t have a lot of wiggle room in your marketing or advertising budget? Your company should invest in pay per click ads: customizable online ads for your business you only pay for when someone clicks on them.

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Pay per click ads are ideal for smaller operations who don’t have the budget for advertising agencies or SEO companies to provide them with quality marketing on the internet. Check out Google’s AdWords to get a feel for the concept.

Be “Real” Online

While it’s important to stay professional online, keep things a little more personable than the boardroom. Imagine turning off a prospective customer simply because they couldn’t relate to the voice of your online content like blogs, mission statements, or any other content that wouldn’t count strictly as marketing or advertising.

Adding a personal touch to your online content lets the consumer know an actual, real person is behind the message. Try to make your web content as “real” as humanly possible.

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Know Who You’re Selling To

No-brainer, right? You can’t sell your product if you don’t know who you’re selling to. In reality though, we know it isn’t so simple. But not every company has the disposable funds to get the latest focus group findings or case study results from Proctor & Gamble.

Smaller companies need good literature on their targeted demographic, too. This is where cheaper or free literature can become a real boon. Two examples: check out this Mashable article called “14 Tips to Nail Down Demographics,” as well as this free eBook, “Getting Women to Buy,” which aims to clue would-be advertisers and marketers in to selling to women as a demographic.

Keep Track Of Your Net Presence

Don’t fall prey to this online faux pas: posting great marketing content, then falling out of step with market trends by failing to update content over time in an ever-changing world of online advertising.

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Maybe you’ve heard of a concept called “file and forget.” Whatever you do, don’t let your website become an example of “post and neglect.” If you take care of your company’s internet presence, it will take care of you in the form of happier customers and a better relationship with your target demographic.

Featured photo credit: photopin.com via farm1.staticflickr.com

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Last Updated on July 10, 2020

The Power of Ritual: Conquer Procrastination, Time Wasters and Laziness

The Power of Ritual: Conquer Procrastination, Time Wasters and Laziness

Life is wasted in the in-between times. The time between when your alarm first rings and when you finally decide to get out of bed. The time between when you sit at your desk and when productive work begins. The time between making a decision and doing something about it.

Slowly, your day is whittled away from all the unused in-between moments. Eventually, time wasters, laziness, and procrastination get the better of you.

The solution to reclaim these lost middle moments is by creating rituals. Every culture on earth uses rituals to transfer information and encode behaviors that are deemed important. Personal rituals can help you build a better pattern for handling everything from how you wake up to how you work.

Unfortunately, when most people see rituals, they see pointless superstitions. Indeed, many rituals are based on a primitive understanding of the world. But by building personal rituals, you get to encode the behaviors you feel are important and cut out the wasted middle moments.

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Program Your Own Algorithms

Another way of viewing rituals is by seeing them as computer algorithms. An algorithm is a set of instructions that is repeated to get a result.

Some algorithms are highly efficient, sorting or searching millions of pieces of data in a few seconds. Other algorithms are bulky and awkward, taking hours to do the same task.

By forming rituals, you are building algorithms for your behavior. Take the delayed and painful pattern of waking up, debating whether to sleep in for another two minutes, hitting the snooze button, repeat until almost late for work. This could be reprogrammed to get out of bed immediately, without debating your decision.

How to Form a Ritual

I’ve set up personal rituals for myself for handling e-mail, waking up each morning, writing articles, and reading books. Far from making me inflexible, these rituals give me a useful default pattern that works best 99% of the time. Whenever my current ritual won’t work, I’m always free to stop using it.

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Forming a ritual isn’t too difficult, and the same principles for changing habits apply:

  1. Write out your sequence of behavior. I suggest starting with a simple ritual of only 3-4 steps maximum. Wait until you’ve established a ritual before you try to add new steps.
  2. Commit to following your ritual for thirty days. This step will take the idea and condition it into your nervous system as a habit.
  3. Define a clear trigger. When does your ritual start? A ritual to wake up is easy—the sound of your alarm clock will work. As for what triggers you to go to the gym, read a book or answer e-mail—you’ll have to decide.
  4. Tweak the Pattern. Your algorithm probably won’t be perfectly efficient the first time. Making a few tweaks after the first 30-day trial can make your ritual more useful.

Ways to Use a Ritual

Based on the above ideas, here are some ways you could implement your own rituals:

1. Waking Up

Set up a morning ritual for when you wake up and the next few things you do immediately afterward. To combat the grogginess after immediately waking up, my solution is to do a few pushups right after getting out of bed. After that, I sneak in ninety minutes of reading before getting ready for morning classes.

2. Web Usage

How often do you answer e-mail, look at Google Reader, or check Facebook each day? I found by taking all my daily internet needs and compressing them into one, highly-efficient ritual, I was able to cut off 75% of my web time without losing any communication.

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3. Reading

How much time do you get to read books? If your library isn’t as large as you’d like, you might want to consider the rituals you use for reading. Programming a few steps to trigger yourself to read instead of watching television or during a break in your day can chew through dozens of books each year.

4. Friendliness

Rituals can also help with communication. Set up a ritual of starting a conversation when you have opportunities to meet people.

5. Working

One of the hardest barriers when overcoming procrastination is building up a concentrated flow. Building those steps into a ritual can allow you to quickly start working or continue working after an interruption.

6. Going to the gym

If exercising is a struggle, encoding a ritual can remove a lot of the difficulty. Set up a quick ritual for going to exercise right after work or when you wake up.

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7. Exercise

Even within your workouts, you can have rituals. Spacing the time between runs or reps with a certain number of breaths can remove the guesswork. Forming a ritual of doing certain exercises in a particular order can save time.

8. Sleeping

Form a calming ritual in the last 30-60 minutes of your day before you go to bed. This will help slow yourself down and make falling asleep much easier. Especially if you plan to get up full of energy in the morning, it will help if you remove insomnia.

8. Weekly Reviews

The weekly review is a big part of the GTD system. By making a simple ritual checklist for my weekly review, I can get the most out of this exercise in less time. Originally, I did holistic reviews where I wrote my thoughts on the week and progress as a whole. Now, I narrow my focus toward specific plans, ideas, and measurements.

Final Thoughts

We all want to be productive. But time wasters, procrastination, and laziness sometimes get the better of us. If you’re facing such difficulties, don’t be afraid to make use of these rituals to help you conquer them.

More Tips to Conquer Time Wasters and Procrastination

 

Featured photo credit: RODOLFO BARRETO via unsplash.com

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