Happy New Year… (Almost!)

End of the year… almost. 

How do you feel? Are you excited, nervous, relieved, or some mixture of these emotions?

If I could speak for most people it would be to say that most people are excited for the fresh start. I know I am every year! Perhaps, like me,  you also enjoy  tossing out last year’s planner or calendar and replacing it with this year’s calendar, or planner, or both.

And, maybe you’re also looking forward to refreshing your content strategy.

Or, penning  a new online course or brainstorming for a book.

Or, offering a new service for your clients.

Or, connecting with like-minded networkers.

Maybe you’re looking forward to attending a conference or festival to enhance your connections.

Whether you set goals for this New year or prefer to choose one word to focus on in your quest for a greater you, it’s a fresh start when you wake up the morning of January 1st, and that’s something to look forward to. 

It’s true the resolutions rarely stick, sadly, even with the goal setting. Why is that?

But, here’s one technique that does seem to be growing in popularity is simple and powerful. Strength lies in simplicity. And, it’s nothing new. Many visionary entrepreneurs have been adapting this as their own strategy, with success.

Here it is, are you ready?? (Drum roll, sil’ vous plait)

Ba-da-dum-da-dum-da-dum…

Choose one word to focus on this year.  (Told ya it was nothing original!)

So, what’s your one word?

Whether it’s “networking,” or “lead-generation,”or “closing,” or “income”…

Or, “faith,” or “family,” or “serving”…

Or, “self-care,” or “gratitude,” or “forgiveness,” or “success”…

Have a blessed New Year!  Thanks for reading!

Vanessa

PS- Need some assistance with planning,  I know a lot of marketers and others who have learned that envisioning is the ONLY way to create your ideal future. Or consider going to a vision board workshop. (I know of a GREAT one coming up!

 

 

 

What does it mean to hear joy?

“HEAR JOY”

Driving past a  row of stores two weeks before Christmas, I noticed an ad outside one of the shop’s doors.

The picture for the ad was simple: A gray-haired man and a gray-haired woman smiled at each other. White sand and blue salt water behind them. They both wore “Santa caps,” red caps with white pom-poms. They were, in my opinion, reasonably attractive and fit. Above their heads, two words in bold red print: “Hear Joy.”

I had to pull over and take a picture.

Why was the ad placed this way, and what does it mean to hear joy?

First of all, the ad was for a shop that sells hearing aids.

But, what does it mean to hear joy?

Biblically,  joy is found in the good news of the gospel, that Jesus Christ came to seek and save. (Not condemn.) (John  3:16, 17)

From a worldly standpoint, joy is an internal knowing.

So, in other words,  joy means peace; a feeling that all will be OK no matter the outcome.

If this is what the ad wanted to convey: that buying this product would bring more joy into the buyer’s life?

But,  “hear Joy” Hear is an active word, which means to listen. Listen to the joy around you.

What does joy mean to you?   Or, what part of the ad speaks joy to you most?

Is it:

  • The picture –or the inference of —  a happy couple?
  • Perhaps hearing joy is being able to hear your loved one or loved ones laugh.
  • Perhaps joy to you is hearing the ocean behind you, indicating retirement or vacation, or retirement in a vacation spot.
  • Because the couple is wearing red and white caps, I think of hearing joy as hearing the laughter of grandkids and family together again.

To summarize, this ad is a great example of good copywriting.

It’s one of the reasons I love marketing, and the art and skill of copywriting, especially.

So much emotion sparked by so few words and just one photograph.

And that’s what great communication is: Learning how to say so much, with  few words.

Most of us are visual people, so ads like (interruption marketing, especially) is more compelling when it nudges an emotion.

The best ads and copy motivate buyers  by stirring up  their (our!) emotions. 

I don’t  know if this ad stirs more emotion that the Christmas video by foreign supermarket chain Edeka a few years ago, but this one features great acting, great filmography and directing, a full script and a believable story with a surprising outcome.

Buyers buy for emotional rather than rational reasons.

The word ‘Joy’ means:

1.) the emotion evoked by well-being, success, or good fortune.
2.) A state of happiness or felicity.
3.) A source or cause of delight.

Source: Merriam-Webster

Hearing is the physical process, and listening is the mental process  that leads to understanding. But our minds don’t stay there. Because we are intelligent and analytical beings, our minds are conditioned to analyze further. If not consciously, subconsciously.  So when we read those two words hear joy, we may engage more than our hearing sense (to think the visual sense is the first one touched in visual ads!),  we actually see joy, smell joy, taste joy, imagine joy and sense on every level all that  joy means to you. Less is more. Simple is stronger. Ads speak personally on many levels.

Thanks for reading!


Merry Christmas!

 

Is Blogging Right For Your Website?

By V. Lewis, Writer

In 2009, more than 100 blogs existed. IN 2014, more than 130 million blogs existed, and more are being added today!

Blogging for your business:

• Builds brand awareness.
• Tells your story.
• Helps visitors get to know you, learn your voice, and gain your trust (especially when you post on a consistent basis.)
• Positions you as an expert and valuable resource to your target market.

Is blogging dead? No, blogging for business is alive and well. (See intro above.)

Run-of-the-mill, boring, run-on posts that neglect SEO (Search Engine Optimization) are no good.

So, why blog?

Because you have something to say; or something to sell.

Maybe you have a book coming out and you want your clients to know about it. Maybe you have an online fundraiser, or a new product to launch. Maybe you have an event coming up. Or, you want to announce a new employee, or highlight a long-time loyal customer.

Rather than shouting out on social media, blogging helps you sell in a classier,  even tactful way. (Nothing against social media.)

In the world of sales, blogging is a type of “soft selling.” In fact, blogging is one of the best ways entrepreneurs and others can attract attention to their work and website.

Here are some of the benefits of blogging for business:

• SEO (Search engine optimization) and drawing people back to your site.
• Collecting emails and having your clients hear from you on a consistent basis (Builds trust.)
• Blogging gets your foot in the door with your prospects—it is an effective way for them to remember who you are and what you offer (and sure beats cold-calling)!
• It helps businesses listen to their customers. Blogging invites comments and ongoing conversation.

Have you been thinking about a blogging strategy for your website for 2018? I’d love to have a conversation with you. Together, we can decide if blogging is a worthwhile strategy, or choose a different method altogether. Either way, I’m happy to chat. Thanks for reading!

Content Writer vs. Copywriter: what’s the difference?

By V. Lewis, Writer

These past few years of being in business,  I’ve been asked if I’m a copyrighter.

(Notice the spelling.)

“Are you a copyrighter? ‘Cuz I have this song…”
I patiently reply with “No, I’m not a copyrighter, I’m a copywriter,” to which they give me a confused look. (The two words sound the same; aren’t spelled the same.)

I don’t work for the Library of Congress.

I don’t license songs. (In my old life, I wrote and published songs—I know, I know, how confusing!)

I tell people I’m a professional content and copywriter and sometimes I still get the blank stares.

Some people don’t know what either one is.

“Ohhh.. so you write… copy? Right? Isn’t that the same thing as content?”

“Well, yes… sort of!” Sigh.

“No… not really.”

I just so happened to present a networking group recently where  I decided to educate on this very topic.

The main distinction between copywriter versus content writer is: the writer’s purpose.

Quite simply, if she is writing to persuade or to sell, she is copywriting.

If she is writing to entertain and engage your audience to stay a little longer on your website, then she is providing content, without the sales motive.

Those are the differences.

Some similarities include:
• Both content and copywriting help to promote your goods, services, programs.
• Both write with the intention of getting a specific response.
The difference is the method that is used.

Let’s recap:A content writer doesn’t sell, they warm up your prospect and help to keep you top-of-mind.
Copywriters, on the other hand, are sales writers.

Whether it’s through emails, landing pages or video scripts, the content is designed with the intent to sell.

Common questions asked:
• Do copywriters charge more than content writers? Yes, copywriters can command more because they may offer more “bang for your buck” and help persuade your readers to purchase your product or service.
• Can content be tracked? Yes. You want to make sure your get the best ROI (return of investment) that you can, so copywriting can be tracked. The best way to judge if something is successful is to measure it. Very often the services such as email marketing programs do help you to keep in touch with your clients and prospects.
• Remember people don’t like to be sold to, but people still like to buy. When people are the buyers, they are in control.
• People buy from those they know, like and trust.
• Through providing useful content that aligns with your readers needs, (free useful, entertaining,or inspiring information) on a consistent basis, your prospects will be primed to buy from you in the future.

Thanks for reading!

Vanessa