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Week Six: Creators in Our Corner

 

It is finally the end of the week and time to meet another content creator we have on our Content Refined team. This week I would like to introduce you to another writer from Deandra’s team.

Katie has been an integral part of Deandra’s team for some time now and is no stranger to producing great content while adhering to sometimes strict deadlines.

 

 

 

Here are a few fun facts about this week’s creator:

1- I am fascinated by other cultures and have been slowly teaching myself Korean for two years. My goal is to go to Korea someday to explore the country and study Korean literature/poetry.

2- I am a devoted aunt to two beautiful girls. My weekends are typically filled with little feet running around and lots of giggles. I was a nanny for six years but seeing these two girls growing up is the greatest privilege and joy in my life.

3-  At 22 years old I underwent my first of a few open-heart surgeries. I was born with a heart defect that resulted in my aorta valve needing replaced. I am in the upswing of recovery and looking forward to a healthier and active lifestyle exploring nature walks up in the mountains.

 

When asked why she chose a remote writing position with Content Refined she said:

A remote writing position is the perfect job for me. Working from home has allowed me to be a caretaker and also easily take time off for my own medical needs. I finished my last two years of high school at a cyber academy and learned that I work well in solitude.

I love working for Content Refined because of their devotion to producing high-quality content for their clients. Everyone is friendly and easy to communicate with. I am very happy to be a part of this wonderful team and to have the opportunity to increase my writing skills.

Using LinkedIn to Grow Your Professional Network

You have just started up your company and established a small base of clientele to kick things off. Business may be going smooth and steady at first but when do you decide to start taking the required steps to promote your company’s growth and reputation? How do you even know what steps to take?

Putting your complete confidence in the hands of your clients and trusting that they’ll bring other people and other professionals in contact with you, is a good way to prevent expansion. This is not the way to conduct business if you want to actually compete with similar companies and have them take you as serious competition.

It’s good to have multiple outlets to fall back on. Multiple connections and business opportunities on hold and available to you if you ever need to use them in a time of crisis; or at any point in time for that matter. It can only do you good. Create a strong network to keep you standing on your feet or else you’ll fall into an abyss of regression.

A network will allow you, and those connected to you through it, to share opportunities, talent, clients, contracts, and jobs. It benefits everyone involved, but you must get involved in the first place. This will start building your reputation of being trustworthy and reliable in your professional relationships and partnerships; so, people know you’re easy to work with.

We can confidently say that if we were looking for an unswerving partnership, we would not choose a partner that has little to no reputation/information known about them that is accessible to us. That, and/or if they lack a significant amount of good reviews. People do their research in these situations, so think about what you would be looking for yourself and base your strategy off that.

 

LinkedIn

A great place to start reaching out to others is on a professional networking site. Some well-known sites are BranchOut, whose main focus is job opportunities and AngelList for startup jobs.  Zerply is used by creative and talented professionals in the entertainment industry, and PartnerUp is an online community for small businesses and startup companies. Finally, LinkedIn, which is going to be the main focus of this article, as they are the most highly recommended and have the most variety of services and products at your disposal.

Each of the sites listed above has a particular service that their website is generally based around. LinkedIn offers a combination of all of these services in one place. They combine job opportunities, easy and direct messaging, convenient document sharing, and readily available connections with people from multiple different industries.

Upon initially creating your LinkedIn account page, recommendations for connections are given to you based on the information you provided. These connections include companies, CEO’s, and people in the same industry or with the same interests as you. Some may personally recommend students or alumni that went to the same college as you also.

Once you add a connection, you’re essentially following them, so you’ll see their content in your feed. According to LinkedIn, “More connections mean you’re more likely to hear about new opportunities.”

 

Products and Business Services Provided by LinkedIn

Jobs

Along the navigation bar at the top of their home page, is a tab labeled ‘Jobs.’ There are two options.

One: if you’re looking for a job, you can go through a list of postings and save them to look at later and compare to each other. It also provides the possibility to help you stand out in recruiter searches and increase your chances of receiving relevant messages from those recruiters by filling out your career interests: when you would like a new job, what job titles you are considering, etc.

Two: if you’re not looking for a job, but rather wanting to seek out new employees to hire, you can post a job as well. Those employees will become part of your professional network. They can provide you with the talent you’re looking for to get recognition, thus making new connections come about, further building your network.

 

Talent Insights

Another tool provided is Talent Insights. Use this to find people that are talented in certain skill sets to work for you. They are essential to have in your network. There are listings from all over the world, from hundreds of thousands of people, all looking for work and connection opportunities.

The Business Intelligence Tool on this page is available to help you compare your company to other peer companies to see what you’re up against. It shows you the number of professionals, percent growth, and the number of jobs each provides.

 

Advertising

LinkedIn allows you to create easy and effective ads to reach your ideal customers and help your business achieve its goals, whether it’s to target a specific audience or to help yourself be a little more well-known amongst your peers. Getting your company’s name out there, in general, is going to build your reputation even further and make it more likely for others to want to begin and develop a professional connection with you.

 

SlideShare

SlideShare provides the ability to conveniently share your knowledge with your newfound connections through presentations, infographics, documents, and more. In return, they will hopefully share their knowledge with you. Being able to use technology in this way will increase your professionality and solidify your current connections.

 

InSalary

“Discover your earning potential by exploring how salaries vary by industry, company size, education level and field of study”. This service would be useful when researching a reasonable salary to offer to potential employees that you find on their Job page.

 

Get Connected!

Now that you’re aware of all the capabilities LinkedIn can provide you, use them to your advantage and get connected to lots of new people out there. As a well-known and established site among professionals, it will quickly accelerate the growth of your company in so many ways.

Simplifying Google Analytics for Your Business

Having an online presence for your business is essential nowadays. A study conducted by Pew Research Center revealed that 79% of Americans were shopping online. That is eight out of ten Americans who are purchasing products and services through the internet. Google Analytics is used to measure your business’s online data. This data is used to provide insight into how users are finding your website and what they are doing once there.

What Does Google Analytics Track?

There is no shortage of data that is tracked by Google Analytics. Any specific data you want and need will be provided. Google Analytics uses tracking codes to track the wide array of data that is important for enhancing your marketing strategy. This data includes but is not limited to:

● Sales and sales revenue
● Transactions
● Page views and unique page views
● Bounce rate
● Time spent on a webpage
● User demographics such as geographic location
● Where users are coming from
● Marketing strategies that work
● Conversion rates
● Loading time
● And much more

The data that is tracked by Google Analytics fall into two different categories: acquisition data and behavior data. Acquisition data examines user activity and data from before they visit a webpage. This shows what media channels they are coming from, their demographic information, and what campaigns drove them to the site.

Behavior data is the information that Google Analytics collects when the user is active on your website. What webpages are most popular on your site, time spent on the website, and what specific pages they are visiting. This information can be used to change your website to cater to the user.

Why is Google Analytics a Necessity?

The online market is massive and continues to grow each year. You need to understand your data to successfully launch marketing campaigns. The data collected from Google Analytics can help increase your ROI and boost your SEO as marketing trends change. The information that Google Analytics provides webmasters is valuable and can make the difference between a business flourishing or flopping.

Understanding your audience is key to launching effective marketing campaigns. The information from Google Analytics tells you exactly who is visiting your website, what channels they are coming from, and what they are viewing. Increasing the traffic to your website generates new leads and can increase sales. Tracking your marketing campaigns with Google Analytics is the best way to improve your efforts.

Simplifying the Information

Google Analytics provides a full analysis of your website and user data. Looking at and trying to translate the information is confusing for most since there is a lot of data to sift through. Luckily, there are ways to simplify what you are looking at and put it into an easier-to-read format.

Summary reports: Google Analytics has an option you can enable to receive emails with a summary report whenever you like. This can be enabled by clicking the ‘reporting’ tab at the top of the Google Analytics page. You can determine the frequency of the emails, how you would like them to be formatted, and who will receive the emails. The report can be customized to fit your needs.

Reporting automation tools: several websites analyze the information being reported in Google Analytics and summarize it into a document for you. They show you the relevant information you need in an easy-to-read format. Your website metrics, such as traffic, will be translated into a written format and will explain why some data has changed.

Customize your dashboard: Google Analytics has a feature called dashboards. It is a group of widgets that allow you to receive an overview of the metrics and reports you value the most. A widget is a small application that displays the specific information it is used for. You can customize your dashboard to include the information you want. It can also be made to share with other people.

There is no restriction on how many widgets you can have. You are also able to create different dashboards in multiple areas. You can have a dashboard dedicated to data relating to SEO or a dashboard about your social media sites and campaigns.

Spreadsheet add-on: many people use spreadsheets as a way to organize and share their information. The Google Analytics add-on works with Google Sheets to make it easier to transfer and view information. The add-on allows you to have access to your Google Analytics data from within the spreadsheet. This helps you to create data visualizations, schedule when you get your reports and customize calculations.

Installing Google Analytics

Obtaining the services from Google Analytics is quite simple if you haven’t done so already. You will need a Google account (used for Gmail services). You can search for Google Analytics in your search engine or find the service under your account. Once you click the sign-up button, you will fill out the information about your website(s). Each Google Analytics account can have 50 websites managed underneath it. This step is also where you can configure the places your data can be shared.

Next, you need to put the tracking code that Google Analytics gives you and paste it into the coding for every web page of your site. Once the code is installed the rest of the work involves going through the settings and enabling features that you want. You can set up goals, a site search, and much more.

Final Thoughts

Businesses with an online presence should not pass up on the benefits of Google Analytics, especially since it comes with a free price tag. Not everyone can view a list of data and understand what they are looking at. Everyone wants to be able to use the data provided to help them reach their business’ full potential. This is hard to do if you can’t decipher the data.

There are many resources available to take the data collected by Google Analytics and put it into simpler formats and terms. Google Analytics collects a lot of data from multiple areas. Using tools that condense the information into what you need and want will make the experience using Google Analytics much easier. It will also allow you to easily understand what changes you need to make in your marketing strategy to improve your business.

Second Installment of the “Creators in Our Corner” Series

Welcome to the second installment and fifth week of the “Creators in Our Corner” series where we will introduce four more of our content creators.

We are going to start this second half off with one more writer from Adriane’s team!

Say hello to Casey!

 

 

Three Fun Facts About Casey:

  1. I have a super large collection of books, from fiction to poetry to non-fiction. I can’t get enough of reading or collecting books
  2. I played the clarinet in band in middle school and in high school
  3. I have two loving Pits and a goofy Pug as well as two ninja cats. My furbabies are my kiddos!

 

Why do you enjoy a remote writing position with Content Refined?

I adore working remotely because I can set my own hours. I am a night owl and my peak creativity and writing time is always after the sun goes down. A flexible schedule is super important to me. Even better, it also gives me more time with my family!

 

 

How Messaging Apps are Changing the World of eCommerce  

The internet has completely revolutionized the way businesses and consumers operate. Consumers are now used to obtaining information in real-time and are always connected to others somehow. Messaging apps have transcended beyond chatting among friends and family and are now used in a variety of ways for eCommerce.

Apps used for communication can revamp a business’s marketing plan and strategy. The popularity and wide use of messaging apps can help grow a business. According to Flurry Analytics, between 2015 and 2016 the time people spent on messaging and social apps grew by 394%. It would be a large missed opportunity for a business not to capitalize off of messaging apps.

 

Important eCommerce Components of Messaging Apps

 24/7 Customer Support

 An increasing number of businesses are utilizing artificial-intelligence bots for their customer support communications. According to digital market moguls, it is projected that more than 85% of customer support interactions will involve communicating solely with an AI bot by 2020. Why are they so popular?

AI bots allow consumers to have access to customer support anytime during the day and week. They also allow more people to receive assistance at once because there is no wait time to speak with a representative. AI bots can be integrated to provide the business and customer with a variety of data and information:

  • Recommend offers and discounts
  • Properly recognize a customer issue
  • Suggest solutions and products for an issue
  • Identify and resolve future issues
  • Examine the customer behavior pattern
  • Link to relevant reports, FAQ’s, and blog posts
  • And much more

AI bots are constantly gathering and processing new information in order to better assist customers. This helps reduce customer complaints and abandonment. All businesses want customers to have a good experience at every stage of the buying process. AI bots are convenient for customers and are likely to give a good impression of the business. This is largely due to the level of reliability that AI bots achieve. Besides capturing various customer data to improve itself, AI bots provide other benefits such as:

  • No biases towards customers or products
  • Precise and clear communication with no emotion
  • Real-time assistance

 

Promotions

Mobile messaging apps currently (2018) have over two billion users worldwide according to Statista. Many users enjoy connecting with their favorite brands or businesses through the app and it’s because of special promotions. Messaging apps allow companies to offer time-sensitive promotions such as coupons, discount codes, and special offers.

Regular email promotions can sometimes show up in a customer’s mailbox after the promotion it is detailing has ended, or the email ends up in the junk folder. Sending a promotional message via a messaging app allows for customers to quickly receive and view the offer. This is ideal for short-term promotions that may only last 24 or more hours.

 

Obtaining Client Feedback

It is easier to send surveys to clients through messaging apps. Surveys or questions can be answered in the chat itself, or a link will open up a webpage where the survey is conducted. It is a quicker way of finding out what the customer wants, needs, and would like from a new product or promotion.

 

Better Brand Image

Messaging apps can increase customer loyalty, strengthening your brand’s image. The convenience of AI bots and messaging apps help create a personalized experience for each customer and integrates itself further with each interaction with its cognitive knowledge. The elimination of negative emotions, like annoyance or aggression, as well as any biases that come with human representatives, the AI bot helps to build the brand’s reputation through each positive and helpful interaction.

 

Reminders

Online shopping makes it easy to add something to the cart and pay for it whenever. This also makes it easy to forget about items that have been added to the cart. eCommerce sites can send instant notifications to a customer through a messaging app to remind them of the item and ask if they want to move forward with the purchase.

Status updates on where a package is can be received as well. For a customer, it is convenient to have all the updates in one place. Scrolling up through a message thread is easier than sifting through different emails.

 

Engaging Content

Customer messaging apps make it easier to engage with your target audience. They are people who have either liked or followed your business’s social media pages or downloaded your specific messaging app. Messaging apps make it easy to send pictures, videos, audio, polls, and links to your customers. Content, specifically quality content, is likely to draw your customers in and keep them interested. This helps drive more sales and create loyal customers.

 

Privacy

It is a commonality for customers to publicly voice their unhappiness about a product or service online. A messaging app allows them to directly communicate with your company easily and in a private forum. They are able to share private information within the app and work on resolving the issue with instant responses. This also helps with your brand image by providing a private channel between you and the customer to resolve problems hassle-free.

 

Segmented Target Groups

A major benefit of messaging apps is the ability to advertise to certain demographics more easily. You can share content with any number amount of people based on who you want to view it. This enhances promotional content as well as driving sales based on customer behavior patterns.

 

Final Thoughts

The main focus of messaging apps when it involves ecommerce is to deepen the relationship between your business and your customers. Customers are being given a better sense of autonomy through AI bots because of its real-time response. Customers feel they are able to govern the conversation unlike with a human-interaction.

Businesses have a better idea of how their customers behave online through the use of messaging apps. This allows for more precise content and information to be shared to the customer, increasing its value. Starting a one-on-one conversation with customers is the best way to grow your business in a market that is constantly growing itself.