Monthly Archives: March 2013

The Power of Affiliate Marketing – Make Money Selling Products & Services

Affiliate marketing has always been a miscellaneous source of income for me, which I have started after a few months I got into the online marketing and blogging industry. It’s a great way for people to make money by promoting and selling other people’s products, all you need to do is to find the right way to find customers for the products and sell them successfully to obtain a commission on each valid sale of the product or service. If you have just started to involve in affiliate marketing, then here’s a informational infographic which will teach you the basics to sell products as an affiliate marketer – starting from engaging with the customers and make out conversions:


Courtesy & Credits: This infographic about affiliate marketing is brought to you a Commission Junction. All thanks goes to the designer and the sponsor (s) of the infographic.

By PrIyAnGsHu

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Anyone Can Be Successful With These Mobile Marketing Tips


Mobile marketing is an effective form of advertising to a large audience. Make sure you invest some time to learn how to implement a successful mobile marketing campaign by reading the tips below.

The best mobile marketers out there take things a progressive step at a time, continuing to climb the mobile ladder. You should also take this approach for your company. If you started off by texting, move to videos and then to interactive games. Always take advantage of the technology you can use, and if it is beyond your expertise, hire someone who does understand how each type of technology works. Utilize all available tools.

Get some of your friends to help test your emails, site, ads, and other aspects of your campaign. For an unbiased opinion, you could pay a tester.

Incorporate a discount offer or a promo code in any mobile marketing message you send out. When customers receive something worth some money, they are much more likely to visit your site and redeem the offer.

To really boost the chances of your campaign succeeding, promote your mobile marketing call to action whenever and however you can. Use social networking, your website and your physical store to inform people of your mobile phone offers. This ensures that your campaign receives as much exposure as possible, and also allows your customers a variety of ways to connect with your business.

If you want to create a mobile app for your business, make sure it does something useful that will make customers want to use it again and again. If your customers feel that your app is unnecessary, they will not use it.

Be aware that the real value of mobile marketing lies in cultivating your relationship with existing customers, not in soliciting new business. Your existing prospects will most likely be more receptive to updates and text messages than newer prospects. Many times, the types of mobile marketing aimed at new prospects is perceived to be spam.

Mobile apps that are connected to your niche can be very useful for marketing purposes. Most users enjoy apps that give them breaking news and helpful tips. You can use the app to direct potential customers to your business site, or you can make the app itself part of your product line.

Advertise the benefits of your mobile marketing campaign in every location you can think of. Advertise your mobile campaign in your traditional marketing methods such as your social networks and your website. Prove that you can help people, and they will be eager to sign up. Promote it as an entertaining way to stay informed about your special offers.

Location is the key to effective mobile marketing. Much different to other marketing types, mobile marketing allows you to key in on your exact location. This means that mobile campaigns can do things no other kind of marketing can. Consider what it can do for your business and how a location-based marketing strategy could work for you.

There will always be some way to sharpen your advertising. And, of course, you must always analyze the competition. This article should have given you some ideas on how to keep a competitive edge in the innovative world of mobile marketing technologies.

5 Critical Questions About Your Email Marketing


Why are we still talking about email marketing? It’s 2012! Facebook has almost 900 million people on it. LinkedIn over 170 million people. We have smartphones…

Not sure about you but I feel compelled to check my email every 5 minutes, just because I can get it on my phone. It is always with me, and that is exactly why you need to be using it more strategically. We are bombarded with emails, messages on social networks, and texts all day. Why should anyone open, not to mention read your emails?

Email is still the preferred method of communication for a wide range of audiences. For that reason it is crucial that you test, measure and pay particular attention to your email marketing.

Here are the top 5 Tips to Reviving your Email Marketing.

First, look at your email marketing and say, “What’s the Point? Who Cares?” Look at it as if you got your own email to your inbox. Would you open it? Would you read it? Would you click on a link? If you answered “nope” to any of these questions, it is time to redevelop your email campaign. Start with your customer in mind and what value it brings to their business or their life.

Once you have a reason to send them an email, think about how you are going to get them to open the email. This is your subject line. You measure the effectiveness of your subject line by the open rate on the campaign, the more people who open your email, the better the subject line. The most effective subject lines are very specific, offer a benefit to the reader, pique their curiosity, or utilize scarcity.

Now that they have opened your email, what’s next? Think about how many people may be opening it on their phone… totally different experience reading it on a phone than a laptop or desktop. Does the call to action send them to a page on your website, now you have to see how your website performs in a mobile environment. Is it slow to load, do you have a separate mobile site? Mobile devices are changing the way we look at all marketing.

The content of the email is crucial to getting them to what you want them to do next. Is it impactful, persuasive and meaningful? Does it help them with a problem they are having? Does it move them in the direction of contacting you to utilize your product or services? Your content should be compelling enough that the reader should want to take the next steps.

Finally, are you telling them what to do next? A strong call to action is often misused in email marketing. Too many businesses just put the call to action as “Buy From Me Now” without ever really giving any value or reason to buy from you. Your call to action should appeal to the reader’s interest in your services. Give them clear directions of what you want them to do.

To recap and review your email marketing campaign here are the 5 tips:

1. Does your email add value?

2. Test subject lines to get more opens

3. Are your messages mobile friendly?

4. Is the body of the email compelling?

5. Do you tell the reader what to do next?

One last comment, how does your email marketing plan fit into the rest of your marketing strategy? Like I said, it’s 2012 and there are many ways to communicate with your audience. You have to communicate with them the way they want to be communicated with. Remember, an email doesn’t have to get stuck in an inbox. Create shareable content and your readers will take care of the rest.

At A Social Media Marketing Loss? Try These Tips To Jumpstart Your Brand


Getting yourself set up online with social media is now becoming an absolute necessity for any business, whether based in a physical location or explicitly online. This article will show you how to effectively market your company using this new marketing outlet. It’s not as hard as you might think it is.

Use social medias to get in touch with your community. You should establish yourself as a professional and a trusted resource regarding issues your community is facing. If you can, involve your company in fund-raising activities. This will help you add new people to your online network and foster a good image.

When using social media marketing to improve your business, you want to create a synergy between all the social media sites that are out there. As you know, there are many sites and each one has its own characteristic or style. Use each style to your advantage and make your online presence known.

Try using polls on your social media profiles to engage your customers and get them involved. People love to give their opinions and have their voice heard. A poll is a great way to get them to voice their opinions and give feedback on new products and ideas that are relevant to your company.

Regarding retweets, acknowledge them when you do them and when they are done to you. What this means is if you like what someone tweeted, use “RT” and paste in their @name and the message. This gives them credit for the content. And, if someone retweets your content, thank them. These are simple courtesies.

Try to make it so that all of your social networking sites are connected with one another. This is good so that everything you say reaches your entire audience. A good example of this is changing your settings so that everything that you post on Twitter is automatically posted on your Facebook as well.

Make it really easy for consumers to subscribe to your blog. Have a “subscribe” button easily located on your page, and make sure it is visible with an easy-to-read font and color. Also mMake the process of subscribing short and simple. If people can handle this task easily, they are more likely to do it. If more individuals subscribe, then business will increase.

Experiment with letting your customers help out each other. Many social media sites will allow you to put a user discussion forum on your social media page. Not only does this help build a community among your customers, it can help enhance your customer service. Customers may discuss different products with others and come to your sales representatives already knowing what they want.

Odds are that your company will receive negative reviews on social media because it is easy for people to post when they are dissatisfied. Address and try to make amends with these customers to stop the spread of negative publicity. Social media is a great tool for this because your responses will be seen along with any negative commentary.

As you can see from this article, while social media can seem intimidating for someone who hasn’t spent much time on it, it is really quite simple. As far as marketing goes, social media is actually something that is free and simple enough to do yourself without having to hire a professional.

Businesses Can Send Text Messages Online To Enjoy Profitability And Success

Today mobile phones are the most widely used gadgets. They have simplified several tasks of people. The features of the mobile phones are very sophisticated which prove highly beneficial for a number of individuals and organizations. Today the scope of cell phones has considerably increased. They are used for a variety of purposes in addition to just talking. They have become a medium of communication and interaction for people all around the world. The text messaging services are an example of how mobile phones have helped mankind today.

Short messaging service or SMS is a feature which almost every cell phone has today. People can send SMS in case the phone lines are not reachable. Today another way of sending SMS is through the internet. Online SMS is actually a text message which is sent from a website. This does not require any software to be installed. The only requirement is an online SMS provider which would help people in setting up the service for their account. Today many business organizations send SMS online as a way of communication and resource sharing.

Today marketing has become a challenging task for business organizations. However there is not much to worry about this aspect. Businesses can opt for online SMS services. By sending SMS online, most of the marketing needs of organization are met effectively. They are able to generate messages in bulk quantities and send them to a large number of people. This allows them to reach a large number of customers in the most convenient way. It involves almost no costs and saves a lot of time. It takes very less time for firms to type the message and send them. This is because the message is typed on the computer instead of the mobile phones.

When an individual is able to send text messages online, they are no longer dependent on the mobile phones for composing the messages. Things become very easy and simple for them. The mobile phones are no longer needed to search the contact details of the recipient and length of the message can be monitored easily. When a marketing campaign is organized through online SMS the firms can manage the contact details very effectively, compose the message easily and also add different features. All these features have convinced several marketers to use online SMS services for promotion of goods and services.

Gone are the days when communication was challenging. All thanks to the various technological developments which have helped people in establishing communication. Today with the help of online SMS services people can interact with each other irrespective of the location. The most noteworthy advantages are reaped by the business organizations. They are able to enjoy a profitable position in the market. They can witness larger sales and revenues because the promotion is carried on in an effective manner. Their products and services gain a good market position and firms can enjoy repeated sales. The success of the firms become a surety and the society as a whole benefits.

By : Jack Samuels

Watchdog wants CRTC to tackle SMS short codes



Surprise charges, hidden sign-up clauses plague users of the texting short cuts, PIAC says.
Watchdog wants CRTC to tackle SMS short codes

Canadians love firing off text messages using short codes, but surprise fees and subscription clauses are creating a wireless wild west that needs to be more strictly regulated, a consumer watchdog says.

Short codes are five- or six-digit numbers used for faster text messaging. They are often easier to remember and use than standard cell phone numbers and are popular for quick one-time texts such as entering contests, or voting in online polls or reality TV competitions like “American Idol.” They can also take the form of content sent to wireless devices through ongoing subscription services, such as jokes of the day, horoscopes, sports scores or weather updates. Since they often cost more than standard texts, short codes are also referred to as mobile premium services (MPSs).

They’re also growing in popularity. Canadians sent and received a total of 2.3 billion short code messages in 2010, a 36 per cent jump over 1.7 billion in 2009, according to the Canadian Wireless Telecommunications Association (CWTA) in Ottawa.

Related Story: 10 terrific things you can do with text messaging

But many Canadians are getting hit by surprise fees for short code use they thought was free, or discovering that one-time short code use triggers a long term wireless subscription to unrelated content they didn’t want, says a report by the Canadian Public Interest Advocacy Centre (PIAC).

“A lot of consumers don’t understand why they’re receiving these services (and) a lot of consumers don’t understand these services may result in extra charges,” says Janet Lo, counsel for Ottawa-based PIAC and co-author of the study.

The PIAC report goes so far as to say that “consumers are frequently misled by advertisements for MPSs,” pointing the finger at online pop-up ads that lack clear information, feature tiny print, or disappear too quickly after coming on screen.

“There’s a disconnect between consumer expectation based on the way these services are advertised and the services they’re receiving,” Lo says, adding that long term content subscriptions automatically activated by one-time short code use are like “a bait-and-switch.”

On top of facing these unwanted fees and subscriptions, Canadians are not getting enough help from the wireless industry to deal with them, PIAC says.

“The (wireless) industry often dismisses the complaints that are brought forward,” the study says, adding that consumers who complain about short codes “routinely encounter hassles, blame, misinformation, denial of assistance and denial of proof that they opted-in to the MPS.” Some consumers said they continue to receive content they don’t want even after repeatedly following the carrier or content provider’s directions on how to unsubscribe, PIAC says.

PIAC’s study calls on the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) to take a closer look at short codes and ultimately consider regulating them under Canadian law, similar to how Australia and the UK moved from industry oversight to an outside regulator. Canada’s wireless service providers currently self-police short code use under rules spelled out in the CWTA’s membership guidelines.

“We have a self-regulated model here but it’s not clear how strongly the industry is being moderated and enforced,” Lo says, noting CWTA does not keep statistics to track how many short code complaints it receives.

Yet the CWTA says it’s doing all it can to ensure short code complaints are few and far between.

“It’s a very, very strict code of conduct and guidelines in place,” says CWTA spokesman Marc Choma.

It’s almost impossible to receive completely unsolicited short code texts because CWTA rules stipulate all short code use must be initiated by the consumer first, Choma says, which means all short code content sent to consumers is solely on a reply basis.

He points out that anyone who wants to start operating a short code text content service must apply to the CWTA first under a “very rigorous process.” And premium short code messages require a double opt-in process, meaning consumers must twice confirm their desire to be signed up before the short codes are valid, Choma says. If users do complain, CWTA already has a fulltime auditor dedicated to overseeing short code programs, he says.

As for PIAC’s suggestion that the CRTC start regulating short codes? Choma says the whole thing feels like a case of déjà vu.

“It’s been less than two years since the CRTC looked into this,” Choma says.

He’s referring to 2009 when Quebec consumer group Union des Consommateurs asked the CRTC to make wireless providers waive disputed charges. The CRTC declined to do that, ruling that market forces and the wireless industry’s self-regulatory framework were already strong enough to protect consumers.

One mobile marketing company says the CWTA’s short code rules offer plenty of incentive to keep content providers from straying beyond the boundaries.

“If we don’t follow the rules our (short code) privileges get removed and we take this very, very seriously,” says Brady Murphy, vice-president of mobile for Transcontinental Interactive in Toronto, which runs mobile marketing campaigns for clients like Labatt, Scotiabank and the Toronto Transit Commission.

Even if one of Murphy’s clients violates the short code rules without his knowledge — perhaps by sending unsolicited short code content — Murphy and his company are still responsible under CWTA guidelines and their short code privileges would be suspended for all of their clients, he explains.

“It really scares me. When we engage with a (content) partner, if we think they’re not going to be on the up and up, it’s not worth losing our good standing with carriers and with our consumer brands,” Murphy says.

Carriers like Telus Corp., are also showing willingness to act swiftly on short code complaints.

Following consumer complaints, Telus recently found that a third-party content provider was violating the CTWA’s rules of conduct for short codes. So Telus opted-out all of its customers from that particular service and credited one month of related charges back to their wireless accounts, says Telus spokesperson A.J. Gratton.

Telus will also waive unexpected short code charges the first time a customer complains about them, Gratton adds.

To avoid falling victim to short code scams or violations, here are some tips courtesy of both Lo and the CWTA: Be aware that you may be billed for short code text messages simply for receiving them, even if you do not open the text message or reply to the text messages, and you may be charged even if you have an unlimited text messaging plan.

  •     Be wary of online contest entries or surveys that require you to provide your mobile phone number to participate.
  •     Read the fine print to ensure that you are not signing up for a subscription service and that you are clear on what the charges will be for the premium text messages.
  •     You can opt out of a subscription-based service by cancelling it; simply text the word “STOP” to the originating short code.
  •     To get more information on where the short code originated and what it pertains to, text “HELP” to the short code. The content provider must send one message containing their (or their client’s) company name and customer service contact information.
  •     Any short code subscription service requires that a monthly reminder be sent out that includes information about the content, its provider and the cost. If you’re receiving short code content with no reminder, contact your service provider to make sure you haven’t subscribed inadvertently.
  •     To dispute a charge on your bill, contact your wireless carrier. Ask for a full record of the charges, including details of whether the opt-in was completed online or via handheld device, etc.

You can voice concerns to CWTA, the Competition Bureau, the CRTC and the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre.

By : Christine Wong

Are You Prepared To Make The Leap To Social Media Marketing? Read On!



Once upon a time, sites like Facebook and Twitter used to be places that people would share photos of their kids or reveal what they had for lunch. Since then, social media sites have evolved to become powerful marketing tools. Keep reading to find out how to promote your business.

You must be sure to keep your professional and personal Facebook accounts completely separate from each other. Potential customers of your business do not need to see family photos or keep track of the games you like to play. If you use your real name for your professional Facebook page, use a nickname on your personal page, so that people won’t find that page in a search.

If you’re not renown for your formatting abilities, think about posting your next article as a list in social media updates. That way, all your information can be concisely presented in order of importance. Most people using social media are younger and appreciate being able to gather information quickly.

When using Twitter, there’s always a possibility that your stuff is going to get lost. Make sure that you’re updating consistently enough to keep your material fresh. Update your tweets often. Short posts are valuable as they get the information across that is necessary without taking away time from your readers.

To help get visitors that are targeted to your site, you should use Youtube in social media marketing. Allowing consumers to preview your products on YouTube will give you an advantage, for your customers will have a better understanding about the products that you are marketing. Therefore, the more viewers visiting your site with prior knowledge of what you offer, could help to increase sales.

Allow consumers to easily subscribe to your social media pages. Many individuals these days incorporate social media into their lifestyle, so allowing them easy access to your Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn profile is a surefire method of letting them have your content delivered to them when you post.

Letting your employees have blogs on your website is a great way to use social media to promote your company. Customers love an inside peek into a company’s workings, and these blogs offer just that. It gives them a window into your company climate, your business culture, and the different processes that go into producing and delivering your services and products. A customer that knows about the inner workings of your business is likely to trust it more.

Respond to people who reach out to you. Make it a practice to look at commentary that is left on your site, and communicate with those who are communicating with you.

Forget what you know about social media. Social media is serious business; don’t think of it as a way people waste time with games or by sharing status updates about the mundane details of their lives. Here, you can attract an entirely new set of people. Hopefully, this article has helped you to understand the impact that social media can have. Log onto your favorite site and get started.