How to Spot a Good Content Writer?

It is quite ironic and boastful writing about how to find a good content writer when you yourself are struggling to grab hold of some ground in this field. Anyway, so following write up shall help you find the right people for the right jobs in the writing field.

These days you can find a number of inspired writers in the social networking sites and blogs. Inspiration mostly coming from the writers of national books mostly on romantic issues and those people start calling themselves content writers. A content writer’s job is much different and difficult than just sharing one’s pathetic love story or cribbing about one bad day.

A content writer is someone who is hired by a particular company to create content meaning matter for the company in various fields that are relevant for the company. Any company or organization always has a target audience that they intend to focus on. So a content writer has to understand the mindset of the target audience and create matter that will be liked and followed by the target audience.

Coming to finding a person who can do all this is not a herculean task.

Germane Advertisement:

Finding the right person for the job is more of smart marketing and advertisement than screening. Suppose if one company XYZ based in ABC deals with toys for children, then specifying the fact that they need content writers for the particular work will make it easy for the company as well as the people as most of us have a preferred liking of a subject. Of course few are gifted with the amazing ability to write on any matter but that will be an exception.

A quick background check:

Apart from spot on marketing one should focus on the blogs or the write-ups written and done in the past. The quality of language use in the matter tells a lot about the person’s character and frequency of posts can hint towards the interest of the person.

The vista from the belvedere is bodacious.”

Such a phrase is attractive to read once but gets 100 times more annoying when you do not comprehend it. One cannot expect all its readers to be from the Shakespearean era so the use of bombastic words should be minimal.

SEO writing knowledge:

Any company would want the customer to have a look on their product or service before going through the same of the competitor. So the writer should have the basic knowledge of SEO writing which basically means to write in a way that the search engines pop up your content before anything else. One should do this without compromising with the quality of the article. Having knowledge of softwares like scribe and traffic travis will be an added quality.

Writing in adverse conditions:

Content writing is a skill that is cultivated over time. So to master it one needs to be able to write in any condition given at any point. Writing a big article and giving several points is easy but making sure you include all the points in a restricted space or suppose writing a heading, it takes serious skills. So the hiring body can audition the applicants on this.

6 Skills that Make Freelance Writers More Marketable

Freelancing is one of the best ways to earn both money and experience as a commercial writer. You get to work from home, design your own schedule and set your own pace. But for these reasons, the number of people looking to freelance is unsurprisingly large.

If anyone wishes to stand out from this immense mass of wannabe freelance writers they would need to learn to develop skills that make them notably more capable of publishing better content than others. Such skills include:

  1. EXPERIENCE – Having professional experience in commercial writing will be a great aid for those looking to be hired by more clients. Even beginners may have some experience through unpaid internships. While applying for work, make sure to submit any certificate or employment records you might have. This will make you stand out as the client will see you as a candidate who is well versed in the art of writing content. If possible, create a portfolio with your best work and present it at an opportune time so that the client gets a full understanding of your skills. Keep sample works prepared at all times for readily presenting it to the interested clients for their consideration.
  2. SEO SKILLS – The purpose of displaying content on a website is to get the page to rank high in the search results. Clients hire content writers for producing relevant, quality content to keep the attention of the readers. A content writer with knowledge of how search engines work, and how to influence search rankings will prove to be very useful and the clients are aware of this. Educate yourself about SEO and learn how to work with it, and use the internet to do so. Read up on the importance of keywords and how to use them. Inform interested clients of your SEO skills by putting it in your resume or online portfolio.
  3. SUPERIOR RESEARCH SKILLS – Potential clients will demand to know about your research skills since research is of utmost importance in this sphere. They may assign a topic to you to test your capability of conducting a relevant and on-point research or they may ask detailed questions about your previous experiences doing it. For a freelance writer it is absolutely necessary to be well practiced in studying extensively about topics before writing about them. Having access to electronic library databases makes this easier. Using other online resources like Google Scholar also yields beneficial results for thorough research on most topics.
  4. EXPERIENCE IN PHOTOGRAPHY AND/OR PHOTO EDITING – Some clients want text along with photographs for content. Having some experience in photography paired with knowledge of an advanced photo editing software like Adobe Photoshop may help you to get hired by clients who would not be willing to hire you otherwise. The ability to shoot and edit images to cater to the needs of the client will attract more employers. Apart from this, experience in photography and photo editing also distinguishes freelance writers from their peers because adding a suitable picture to written content makes the article more attractive and easy to read.
  5. BASIC KNOWLEDGE OF HTML/CSS – Hypertext Markup Language (HTML) and Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) are used to design the look of the content on a webpage including the title, body, header, footer, font, font colors, text size etc. Being proficient in these web languages will help your chances in the market. Even a basic knowledge will make you stand out from most of your competition and help you qualify for more commercial writing jobs. Websites like the World Wide Web Consortium can be useful for this purpose as they provide free classes for beginners to learn HTML and CSS and get a clear understanding of how to use these while writing content.
  6. CONTENT MANAGEMENT SYSTEM (CMS) – Although this skill is easily learned, knowledge of how to operate a content management system like WordPress may prove to be very advantageous. There are some blogs and e-zines which require the writers to submit their content through a CMS login profile as opposed to sending it via emails or content hosting networks. Websites like WP101 and LearnWordPress provide free tutorials to help you learn the how-to of one such CMS.

Signs That Your Startup Is Failing

Signs That Your Startup Is Failing

Every second person that you meet may seem to have their own start-up these days, but not all of them are succeeding. The thought of having your own start-up does have a nice ring to it. But in reality, it is not everyone’s cup of tea. Truth is that running and sustaining a startup is more difficult than beginning a new one.

Keep a lookout for these signs if you feel that your startup isn’t doing that well.

Signs That Your Startup Is Failing

No audience!

This is one of the first and major problems that you may face. You may have put a lot of efforts in designing your product, making it as user-friendly as possible, but to realize that no one actually needs it is really heart breaking. Think it through, ask advice of others, consult people before launching your product.

Or there are chances of happening the opposite too, that the product receives good customer reception, people sign up to the mailing list in huge numbers, but customer acquisition rates are going down. People are just signing up but not actually buying the product.

Shrinking market

It is difficult to sustain a business in a shrinking market. If your company is unable to handle the competition, the price is becoming a concern and demand is gradually decreasing then it is time to rethink your position in the industry.

Deviation from the core product

Managing time is a real challenge and not everybody can win it. If you get more engaged in other aspects of your start-up and deviate your attention from improving the core product then you are destined to doom. Competitors do not come announced and you may never know when they might sweep your business away if you keep yourself busy in other distractions which may pop up along the way. So keeping your attention focused is a must.

Dying enthusiasm

The excitement of starting and running a new business of your own have chances of wearing off. When obstacles come in your way, the thought of running and leaving it all of behind may come in your head. After all, the stress of managing all the things from designing, marketing, financing, accounting, promotions, sales, customer care etc. is not less. Some people are born with the talent of entrepreneurship, some learn the tricks of the trade but some are definitely not meant for it. Trying it may seem tempting as it is trending these days but sooner or later the truth will come out. The point is to keep the spirits high. Don’t overburden yourself with achieving all in the beginning itself. Give it time. Slow and steady wins the race. Enjoy the journey of your business. Don’t rush it. Savor each moment.

No plans for monetization

Charity is good. But if your idea is worth it then start of monetising it if you haven’t already. Always keep the option open.

Cutthroat competition

The market is flooded with numerous start-ups. If your idea is not unique and innovative enough or it is not being marketed properly then it is a problem you should be worrying about.

If it is in a commodity market then, price wars may get into your way. Try to keep your product or service as cheap as possible to avoid being run down by other large-scale manufacturers or service providers out there.

Do not get demotivated if you notice these signs. Remember, the taste of success can only be felt after having failed. So don’t be afraid of failures.

Take them in your stride and give them a seasoning of your own endurance! Times change for everyone. The tables will eventually turn. The real question is: Are you working on your weaknesses and making proper use of your strengths and capabilities?

There are a lot of things we don’t like about ourselves. Instead of worrying about things we cannot change, we need to work on our bad habits which can be replaced by some good ones.Never limit yourself to what you already know. Embrace your dark side, and incorporate them into your work. All of the best stuff comes from it when you allow yourself to remain open to the unknown.

The world is full of examples. Examples of people who have achieved laurels in different fields regardless of their injuries, disabilities, low-income conditions, marriage bounds, or conservative families issues. This is your life. You and only you get to decide what you want to do with it. You can’t rely on someone else for your happiness. You can’t blame someone else for your failures. People tell you all kind of things, force you into decisions, but it’s you in the end who makes the decision.

You can’t rely on someone else for your happiness. You can’t blame someone else for your failures. People tell you all kind of things, force you into decisions, but it’s you in the end who makes the decision.

The Hyper Reality of Stock Market Fluxes

The Hyper Reality of Stock Market Fluxes

The market forces a swing in the direction of stock prices every day – it’s simply the law of supply and demand that creates the fluxes. Yet, there is more to it than the exchange of products and services.

But we’re not here to discuss the simple basics of the stock market.

The hyper-reality that dictates much of the global transaction can be attributed current events.

It’s the reason why a simple tweet from President Trump can drop Toyota stock, losing them $1.2 billion on their market cap. It’s the reason why Nintendo stock can drop 7 percent even after revealing their new console, the Switch. Or even how ‘fake news’ has created rumors and disruption on Wall Street.

It’s safe to say that investors are fickle.

The general consumer base could be enthusiastic about a product or service launch but if investors are on the fence then stock can go either direction. It makes or break for the publicly offered company.

The market goes through a turbulent time whenever there are big changes:

·  World events

·  Economies

·  Hype

·  Scandals

·  Natural disasters

·  Politics

Speculation being the mother of them all. Trends following suit.

Who would have thought how the market would react after the most recent election of Trump?

There are ways to keep ahead. These are tidbits of information that can send you soaring into tremendous returns on your investment or bottom you out faster than you can hit cancel on the trades.

It’s a Wall Street bet and you’re ready to play the game.

Here are some ways to keep your pulse on the speculation and trends:

·  Stay on the beat – You don’t have the multi-million dollars’ worth of revenue to pay analysts and players to monitor the action compared to large firms. Good, you don’t have to. Save your money. Instead, follow today’s stock upgrades by tapping into data aggregation sites such as MarketBeat.com to see the best picks from respected brokerage firms. Read into the data, check the rating and suggestions, and you’re already ahead in the game.

·  Follow China – There’s no beating around the bush that China is, perhaps, the dominant player in the global market. Globalization is here to stay and much of what China plans will dictate the entirety of the market. Do yourself a favor and subscribe or follow ShanghaiDaily.com, Reuters & CNBC’s ‘China’ section, or go as far as learning basic, conversational Chinese to talk with other brokers in the actual region.

·  Data Scraping (Twitter Style) – Twitter may limit the conversation to 140 characters but it doesn’t mean it can’t have a substantial impact on the market. We’ve already covered how a tweet from Trump (and other influential individuals) can shape stock but you can go one deeper. Services such as Dataminr provide advanced analytics to scrape and report on trends found within social platforms (especially Twitter) which can be used for projections and reinforcing speculations. You now know how the market is reacting to news and trends in real-time through the clever use of data scraping and mining.

The Web has been an incredible game-changer for improving your investing. You can certainly take the time to keep journals, be logical, and keeping calm but when you’re ready to bet big – you’ll want to tap into the big data that’s available.

So, keep up with the trends, follow the global leaders, and roll up those sleeves to try online services to gain an edge in the marketplace.

Your turn: What process do you take to capitalize on trends that will affect the stock market?

The Email Marketing Mistakes That (Almost) Everyone’s Made

The Email Marketing Mistakes That (Almost) Everyone’s Made

You’ve probably read or heard that email marketing has one of the highest returns on investment of all the marketing tools out there. This means that if you have an ounce of sense and you actually DO want to grow your business then you’ve added it to your marketing campaign. But while email may be all digital, and there is a lot about email that can be automated – at the end of the day every single email, whether automated or not, is created by humans.

And humans are not perfect. We make mistakes. Sometimes our mistakes are small, other times they’re not. But when it comes to email marketing, even the smallest of mistakes can have huge consequences. Especially when those tiny little mistakes become viral sensations on social media! So for those of you who want to avoid the most common email marketing mistakes, here’s a list of the bloopers every email marketer has made at least once:

Forgetting to optimize the Inbox view

For those of you who don’t already know this, the Inbox view is how your email appears to a subscriber in their inbox. In other words, it includes the Sender name, the subject line, and the preheader/preview text. And seeing as the success of an email campaign depends entirely on whether or not your subscribers actually open your emails, you would expect email marketers to be taking more care here. But no.

So before you send an email make sure that:

  • The sender name is one that your subscribers expect to see and trust
  • That your subject line is optimized for the content of your email (that means it should encourage opens but NO bait & switch!)
  • That your preview text supports your subject line and further encourages opens (doesn’t just say “open in browser” or something similarly boring)

Forgetting to proofread and test emails properly

Spelling and grammar mistakes are more common than you think, and most of the time people will ignore or not notice them. But emails are only about a page long and usually don’t have very many actual words – so these mistakes stand out like flashing neon signs (especially in the subject line and preview text). So proofread EVERY word, then get someone else to proofread them too!

The other thing that happens a lot more often than you think is broken links in emails, or links that don’t go where they’re supposed to. If it’s happened to you before then you KNOW how frustrating it is – especially when it should take you somewhere or get something you’re very interested in. So send a test email, then click on EVERY link to make sure they’re working properly!

Another thing you absolutely have to test is whether your email works properly in the most popular email clients, and whether your mobile optimization is working properly. Because while some subscribers might opt to open that email somewhere else later, the majority of them will just delete it and the time and effort you spent on that email will be for nothing!

Lastly, make sure that any automated personalization techniques you’re using are working properly – because no one likes to get an email that opens with “Dear First Name”!!

Not managing their email lists properly

Now, this is actually quite a big banner with lots of little mistakes that fall under it. They may seem insignificant but may easily get you on the blacklist which is actually a big marketing problem. However, the majority of these mistakes would be avoided if the relevant people were taking proper care of the lists of subscriber email addresses.

  • Sending one size fits all emails (not using list segmentation and simple personalization techniques)
  • Sending targeted emails to the WRONG list (sometimes repeatedly!)
  • Buying email lists (if you have to do this, then use an email scrubber before launching a campaign and GET PERMISSION before sending more emails!!)
  • Not monitoring the click-through and open rates of email campaigns (this info helps plan future content for emails and also segment lists further)
  • Not sticking to a fixed email schedule (this includes sending too many OR too little emails)
  • Emails not reflecting subscriber behavior (this means making sure the triggers for automated emails work properly!)
  • Never using A/B testing to find which content is MOST engaging

And the list can go on forever!

Forgetting about the subscriber experience

You may have never had anything to do with developing a website, mobile app or even a game; but you probably have heard about user experience. Now subscriber experience is not exactly the same because it’s not just about what your email looks like. Rather it’s about the whole email as a package.

  • Is your content relevant to that subscriber (this relies on list segmentation too),
  • Do you have the right balance of text and images (don’t forget about ALT text and plain text versions of your emails),
  • Is your email too busy (too many links will overwhelm subscribers)
  • Is your content engaging (meaning it will attract clicks – not too boring and not too pushy)

Hiding or not including the links subscribers want

As much as you might not WANT to include it, in order to be CAN-SPAM compliant you absolutely have to include an unsubscribe link/button in every email you send. Now you may think it’s very clever to basically hide that unsubscribe link where no one will notice it – but then subscribers will block you AND probably report your email as spam. So rather make it easy to find (and use!!)!

While including contact details is another CAN-SPAM compliance requirement, what many marketers don’t include is an EMAIL address for subscribers to use. Even when you’re using a “no-reply” address to send emails, sometimes subscribers want to contact you – but NOT phone you! So include a “reply to” address or else provide a link to a contact page WITH an email address.

Now while this list might help you avoid the most common email marketing mistakes, and maybe make you feel better if you’ve ever made a mistake of your own – just remember that it would take a whole book to list every single mistake that you could possibly make in an email campaign. And because we’re human, mistakes are going to happen. Hopefully, they won’t have too many serious consequences, but if they do then just do your best to make sure it doesn’t happen again!