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Content is Fire: Social Media is Gasoline 25

The world of Social Media Management can seem complex with myriad platforms and numerous ways to share information. Yet, the primary motivation is shared by all companies; maximize ROI with increased likes, follows, shares and engagement.

What does all this mean and how will it impact your business’ bottom-line?

Eric Bradlow, Professor of Marketing and Statistics at the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania guarantees that if you run a regression of purchase data on Facebook likes, products that have more likes on Facebook will be bought more. In fact, knowing how many likes you saw on Facebook for a given product helps to predict purchase data more so than traditional online or television advertising.

Additionally, the effectiveness and credibility of Facebook’s metrics and analytics cannot be overstated. In fact, Facebook passed the 300 billion dollar net worth in 2016, making them the leaders in significant ROI for businesses. In the same way, platforms like Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram are helping companies to engage with their customers in new ways and ultimately driving sales.

 

Where do you start?

The place to begin is with your target customers. First, we need to identify them and their problems. By focusing on pain points, you can create content that solves their problems. Knowing your audience also means being able to find them where they are, whether they are on one particular platform, in specific groups or following certain pages. Understanding your audiences helps you to target them with more effective content and achieve better results.

Regarding audience, you are writing to solve a pain point for them, so you need to know who they are, both so you can write for them, and so you can target them with your social media and/or email campaigns.

 

Marketing is no longer about the stuff that you make, but about the stories, you tell.

Getting to know your customers will allow you to build a bank of questions that they may have. Your first content creation strategy will be to answer those questions. Not only will you grow your community but you will also build your professional reputation and brand recognition.

 

Time to build credibility.

Writing great content and publishing it via your company’s blog and social media platforms is only one-half of the process. Distributing good content does not guarantee significant increases in engagement, traffic, and sales. Still, if your customers aren’t coming to you, you must go to them.

Now, it’s time to become a thought leader. Start by answering questions from your target audience. You also want to acknowledge the influencers in your industry. Responding to the content of major influencers in your field helps you to not only stay up to date with trends but it also aids in giving your content more visibility. By making thoughtful comments on content shared by influencers, these same influencers may also read and share your content to their audience.


How Can We Help You?

Here at Write Right International, we will get you started with our Social Media Starter Kit. Now you can access Social Media Management for one low affordable flat rate. Perfect for solopreneurs, start-ups, and SMEs.

Our Social Media Starter Kit includes;

  • Classifying your target customers.
  • Pinpointing where to find ideal customers and what platforms to focus on.
  • Creating and scheduling 1 week of powerful content to be shared twice daily.*
  • Uncovering a minimum of 10 influencers in your industry.
  • Making 2 retweets/quotes/shares from influencers daily.*
  • Your Social Media Assessment Report and Recommendations.

*(once on Saturday and Sunday)


How to Write a Business Letter 7

Need to write a polished, professional letter? Most business letters follow an established, easy-to-learn format that you can adapt to any type of content. A business letter should always contain the date, information about the sender and recipient, and a few body paragraphs. Follow these steps and modify as necessary to fit your company’s standards.

Steps

Sample Business Letter


Beginning the Letter

  1. Know the format. Whatever the content of your letter, there are a few business standards to follow regarding the way it looks. Business letters should be typed and composed in a common font such as Arial or Times New Roman. Employ block paragraphing. This means that you start a new paragraph by hitting ‘return’ twice. Don’t use indenting for block paragraphs.[1]
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    • Use one-inch margins on all sides.
    • An emailed business letter should also be composed in a common font. Don’t use script or colors other than black and white in a business email.
  2. Choose the right kind of paper. The letter should be printed on 8.5” by 11” (known as “letter size”). If you are outside the U.S., you might use size A4 paper. Some lengthy contracts may be printed on 8.5” x 14” (“legal size”).
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    • If you’re printing the letter to send, consider printing the letter on company letterhead. This lends it a more professional air and provides your company’s logo and contact information.
  3. Include information about your company. List your company name and the company address, with each part of the address written on a different line. If you’re self-employed or an independent contractor, add your name either in place of the company name or above it.
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    • If your company has pre-designed letterhead, you can use this instead of typing out your company and address.
    • If you’re typing out the address, it should appear either right or left justified at the top of the page, depending on you and your company’s preference.
    • If you’re sending the letter to an international location, type out the country in capital letters.[2]
  4. Include the date. Writing out the full date is the most professional choice. For example, write either ‘April 1, 2012’ or ‘1 April 2012.’ This should appear left justified a few lines below the sender’s address.
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    • If you wrote your letter over several days, use the date that you finished the letter.[3]
  5. Add the recipient’s information. Write out the recipient’s full name, title (if applicable), company name, and address in that order, with each piece of information on a separate line. If necessary, include a reference number. The recipient’s information should be left justified a few lines below the date.
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    • It is best to address the letter to a specific person. This way, an actual person will be able to respond to your letter. If you don’t know the name of the person to whom you should send the letter, do a bit of research. Call the company to find out the person’s name and title.[4]
  6. Choose a salutation. The salutation is an important indicator of respect, and which one you use will depend on whether you know the person to whom you’re writing, how well you know them and the level of formality in your relationship.[5] Consider the following options:
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    • Employ ‘To Whom It May Concern’ only if you don’t know whom, specifically, you’re addressing.
    • If you do not know the recipient well, ‘Dear Sir/Madam’ is a safe choice.
    • You may also use the recipient’s title and last name, e.g. ‘Dear Dr. Smith.’
    • If you know the recipient well and enjoy an informal relationship with him or her, you may consider a first-name address, e.g. ‘Dear Susan.’
    • If you are unsure of the recipient’s gender, simply type the whole name, e.g. ‘Dear Kris Smith.’
    • Don’t forget a comma after a salutation or a colon after “To Whom It May Concern.”

Composing the Body

  1. Strike the right tone. Time is money, as the saying goes, and most business people hate to waste time. The tone of your letter, therefore, should be brief and professional. Make your letter a quick read by diving straight into the matter and keeping your comments brief in the first paragraph. For instance, you can always start with ‘I am writing you regarding…’ and go from there.
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    • Don’t concern yourself with flowery transitions, big words, or lengthy, meandering sentences – your intent should be to communicate what needs to be said as quickly and cleanly as possible.
    • Be persuasive in your letter. Most likely the purpose of your letter is to persuade your reader to do something: change their mind, correct a problem, send money or take action. Make your case.
  2. Use personal pronouns. It is perfectly fine to use “I,” “we,” and “you” in your business letter. Refer to yourself as “I” and your reader as “you.”
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    • Be aware if you’re writing the letter on an organization’s behalf. If you are stating the company’s perspective, you should use “we” so that the reader knows that the company stands behind your statement. If you are writing your own opinion, stick with “I.”[6]
  3. Write clearly and concisely. Let your reader know exactly what you are trying to say. Your reader will only respond quickly if your meaning is crystal clear. In particular, if there is some result or action you want taken because of your letter, state what it is. Explain your position in as few words as possible.
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  4. Use the active voice. When describing a situation or making a request, make sure to choose the active voice, rather than the passive voice. The passive voice can make your writing ambiguous or impersonal. In addition, the active voice is more streamlined and straight to the point.[7] For example:
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    • Passive: The sunglasses are not designed or manufactured with attention to their durability.
    • Active: Your company designs and manufactures sunglasses without attention to their durability.
  5. Be conversational when appropriate. Letters are written by people to people. Avoid form letters if possible. You cannot build a relationship with canned impersonal letters. However, stay away from colloquial language or slang such as ‘you know,’ ‘I mean,’ or ‘wanna.’ Keep the tone businesslike, but be friendly and helpful.
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    • If you know the recipient well, it’s fine to include a friendly line sending good wishes.
    • Use your judgement when determining how much personality to reveal. Sometimes adding a little humor is actually helpful in a business setting, but err on the side of caution before making a joke.
  6. Be courteous. Even if you are writing with a complaint or concern, you can be courteous. Consider the recipient’s position and offer to do whatever you can, within reason, to be accommodating and helpful.
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    • For example, a discourteous complaint might read: “I think your sunglasses suck and I am never buying them again.” A courteous complaint might read: “I am disappointed with the construction of your sunglasses, and I plan to take my business elsewhere in the future.”
  7. Use “second page” letterhead for additional pages. Most business letters should be concise enough to be one page in length only. But if you have something lengthier, such as a contract or legal findings, you may need additional pages. Use “second page” letterhead, which usually has an abbreviated address and is made of the same type of paper as the first page letterhead.[8]
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    • Include the page number on the second and subsequent pages, at the top of the page. You may also want to include the recipient’s name and the date.[9]
  8. Wrap it up. In the last paragraph, summarize your points and clearly outline either your planned course of action or what you expect from the recipient. Note that the recipient may contact you with questions or concerns, and say thank you for his or her attention to the letter/matter at hand.
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Closing the Letter

  1. Choose a closing. The closing, like the salutation, is an indicator of respect and formality. ‘Yours sincerely’ or ‘Sincerely’ is generally a safe bet; also consider ‘Cordially,’ ‘Respectfully,’ ‘Regards’ and ‘Yours Truly.’ Slightly less formal but still professional closings include ‘All the best,” “Best wishes,’ ‘Warm regards,’ and ‘Thank you.’ Use a comma after your closing.
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  2. Sign the letter. Leave about four lines empty for your signature. Sign the letter after you’ve printed it, or, if you’re sending it via email, scan an image of your signature and affix it to this part of the letter. Blue or black ink is preferred.
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    • If you are signing the letter on someone’s behalf, write “pp:” before your signature. This stands for “per procurationem,” which means “by agency” or “on behalf of.”[10]
  3. Include your typed name and contact information. Beneath your signature, type your name, title, phone number, email address and any other applicable means of contact. Give each piece of information its own line.
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  4. Add the typist’s initials. If someone other than the writer typed up the letter, you should add this person’s initials below the signature block. Sometimes, the letter writer’s initials are also included. Then it is clear who worked on this letter.
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    • For example, if you include just the typist’s initials, write them in lowercase: mj
    • If you include the writer’s initials, put these in uppercase with the typist’s initials in lowercase: RW:mj. Some styles add a slash between the two sets of initials: RW/mj.
  5. Make note of enclosures. If you’ve enclosed additional documents for the recipient to review, note this a few lines beneath your contact info by noting the number and type of documents. For example, write: ‘Enclosures (2): resume, brochure.’[11]
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    • You can also abbreviate “Enclosures” by writing “Encl.” or “Enc.”
  6. Add additional recipients’ names. If you are sending a copy of the letter to another person, you should include this on the letter. This is noted by typing “cc:” below the “Enclosures” line, which stands for “courtesy copy”, along with the person’s name and title (“cc” used to indicate “carbon copy” when letters were typed on carbon copy paper).[12]
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    • For example, write: “cc: Mary Smith, Vice President of Marketing”
    • If you are adding more than one name, align the second name underneath the first name, but without the “cc:”

Finalizing the Letter

  1. Edit the letter. Presentation is a key element of being professional. Make sure that the recipient will easily be able to see you as capable and in charge by editing your letter for errors. Run spell check on your word processor, but also give the letter a thorough read before you send it.
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    • Ask yourself whether the letter is clear and concise. Are any paragraphs more than three or four sentences long? If so, determine whether you can eliminate unnecessary statements.
    • If the letter is extremely important, you might want to have a friend or colleague look it over. Sometimes a second pair of eyes can help you catch errors or awkward wording you may not have noticed.
  2. Don’t staple your letter. If you have multiple pages, staples are generally avoided. If you want to ensure that the papers stay in order, then use a paperclip at the top left corner.
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  3. Post the letter. If you’re sending the letter via post, use a business envelope. If available, use one with the company logo printed on it. Neatly print your return address and the recipient’s address. Fold the letter into third parts, such that the recipient will first unfold the top flap, then the bottom flap. Make sure you affix sufficient postage, and send it off.
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    • If you feel like your handwriting is messy and doesn’t match your professional persona, type the addresses in your word processor and run the envelope through your printer.
    • If the letter is extremely important and/or time-sensitive, consider having it delivered by courier.
    • If you want to email the letter, convert the letter in HTML or save it as a PDF to preserve formatting. It is better, however, to send the physical letter.

Tips

  • Use a quality pen to sign the letter.
  • Be prompt. If you cannot respond fully in less than a week, tell the recipient so and note when he or she can expect a response from you.
  • Emphasize the positive. Talk about what you can do, not what you can’t. For example, if a product is out of stock, don’t tell the customer you are unable to fill the order; instead, tell them the product is very popular and you have sold out. Then tell them when you can get the order to them.
  • If you’re writing a complex letter, consider writing an outline first.
    • List out the topics you want to cover. Do not worry about the order.
    • For each topic, list keywords, examples, arguments and facts.
    • Review each topic in your outline for relevance to your aim and audience.
    • Cut out anything that’s not relevant.
    • Sort the information into the best order for your reader.

Warnings

  • Don’t employ too much flattery. A genuine compliment is acceptable, but going overboard will indicate that you have to rely on flattery, not competence, to do your job.
  • Don’t be too blunt and forceful in your tone. Remember, you’re trying to improve or start a professional relationship with a business letter.

Related wikiHows

Sources and Citations

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The Effect of Image-based Posts on Social Media Insight 1

Oreo generates buzz on social media through memes and visual communication

Memes and gifs are dominating social feeds, the rise of which could cause problems for those using social media for insight, as words diminish and image-based conversations become the new form of communication.

Over 80 million photos are uploaded each day to Instagram and users watch six billion videos on Snapchat every day, according to Brandwatch, while Twitter says more than 100 million gifs were shared on the platform in 2015.

“People aren’t typing things now to share emotion, they’re taking photos,” says Darren Jones, social media lead at the Post Office. “It’s a growing space as more people take and share photos on the likes of Instagram – that is something that’s on my mind for the next campaign.”

It is “a natural way that the landscape has shifted”, according to Pollyanna Ward, digital and social media manager, biscuits at Mondelez, who says brands need to “move forward with consumers” and the users of those platforms.

She adds: “It’s just a new way for customers to talk about us. If someone is posting a meme about Oreos, it’s more for us to know that it is positive – if it’s negative, we can try to understand why.”

Visual listening is the next frontier for the providers as it is their platforms that will need to develop to enable brands to see this data. Many already identify sentiment through emojis and others can identify brand logos in images through AI and advancements in computing power.

Brands have to “develop with it” and look to providers, says Richard Bassinder, head of social media at Yorkshire building Society. “There are things like image listening coming in on the emoji side, that is interesting as it gives a universal way of understanding sentiment – and if we can search and categorise by emoji, that gives us an interesting way of looking at things.”

He says it does “make it tougher” but adds that “part of the new world of marketing is adapting to how people want to communicate and if they want to communicate through images and emojis, we need to be supportive of that”.

The post The effect of image-based posts on social media insight appeared first on Marketing Week.


5 Simple Tips for a Successful Phone Interview 12

You’ve done all you can, prepared a world class professional resume or kick-ass proposal. A few days later you receive a phone call. They are interested in conducting a preliminary interview over the phone.

While the phone is a less common medium for interviews these days, with the advent of Skype and Google Handouts, they are actually still quite prevalent for the busy Recruiter/Hiring Manager/Investor.

You are given a time for the phone interview. Now how do you prepare?

No worries – Here are five simple techniques to ensure your success.

 

Tip #1 for a Phone Interview: Make Sure Your Equipment is Fully Functional.

Chances are, you only use a cell phone so make sure that it is fully charged. You should also make sure that you are in an area with great reception, so if your home has spotty connection issues go to a quiet place where service is guaranteed.

Have your phone compatible earphone or Bluetooth earphone ready and waiting. The phone interview may go on for some time and you don’t want to be holding your phone to your ear for an extended period. Free hands will also come in handy for Tip# 5.

 

Tip#2: Do Your Homework. Research the Company or Investor.

In many ways a phone interview is the same as a face to face interview and the interviewer will be asking many of the interview questions that you are familiar with. Especially, the all-important question “How do you think you can add value?” A good answer to this question requires that you have a firm understanding of what the company’s/Investor’s activities and goals are.

 

Tip #3: Eliminate All Interruptions

You want to concentrate on your interview and you don’t want your interviewer to be assaulted by background noise coming from your surroundings. Therefore, if people have to be around you while you are being interviewed make sure they understand that they have to be silent. Similarly, ask a friend to babysit or take your dog for a walk, if necessary.

 

Tip #4: Don’t Forget To Smile.

Even though the interviewer can’t see you, your body language will still be transmitted.

According to research, persons can differentiate vocal intonation not only between a smile and a non-smile but among different types of smile. “Smiling affects how we speak, to the point that listeners can actually identify the type of smile based on sound alone…”. Not to mention that 84% of the message over a phone is your tone of voice, so making sure that “smiling tone” comes through is imperative.

 

Tip #5: Move Your Body To Increase Energy.

Ever seen those movies where the sales personnel gets up from their desk and walks around in order to close a deal? Well, that’s because walking around, making hand gestures or even standing alone increases passion and energy.

Think about it, when you are arguing passionately, it’s almost impossible to do so without gesticulating. Accordingly, if you want a high energy invigorating successful Phone Interview, make sure to move about.

 

There you have it, five simple Tips for a Successful Phone Interview, now you are ready to land that job or close that deal. Just be confident, you did your homework and you are ready to rock.


Thought Leadership vs. Promotional Content 1

When you are ready to begin planning your content, it is essential that you understand that promotional content and thought leadership are two different things. Thought leadership takes you into the realm of subject matter expert, making you and your organizations into entities that know not just how to provide a solution but also has a significant understanding of your objectives, the pain points of your clients, and how to guides them toward appropriate solutions.

Any seller can publish feature focused product description brochures and other product-related content. Still, only the trusted seller will triumph as they understand their target audience and knows exactly how to help them. In this way. Most of the work is already done as buyers will naturally gravitate toward these sellers. Remember, instead of constantly pushing sales messages to your leads, you want to teach people the benefits of what you do.

Content Marketing and the Call-To-Action

Now it’s time to walk the tight rope because even educational content should have a strong, clear, call-to-action (or CTA). Your CTA is part of your marketing message that should persuade people to act. Your standard CTA might ask the reader to subscribe to your blog, download another ebook, or sign up for a demo.

Tips for a powerful CTA, it must:

  • Stand out
  • Clearly define what you want the lead to do
  • Create urgency
  • Be positioned in a prominent area

Content Creation For Lead Generation 17

Content is the foundation of your lead generation efforts. The Content Marketing Institute defines content marketing as “the marketing technique of creating and distributing relevant and valuable content to attract, acquire, and engage a clearly defined and understood target audience—with the objective of driving profitable customer action”.

Think of content as the fuel for all of your marketing campaigns—from email to social to event collateral. Marketers have come to rely on content to engage prospects and customers in today’s new buyer landscape. You must create content that educates, inspires, and begs to be shared. It should help leads overcome challenges and achieve their aspirations. If you are able to do that, leads will flock to you, and you’ll gain their trust. Trust is ultimately what creates customers out of leads.

What Form Can My Content Take?

Content is more than just ebooks. It can come in many forms, so think outside of the box!

 


Does your resume work for you or against you? 2

job-hunt - EditedIf I had to give you just one piece of advice to help you land your dream job, it would be to have your resume professionally written. If you can’t afford that then you should at least get some expert advice about what makes a good resume. The simple truth is that one of the most shocking things I discovered in my role as a Recruiter is that too many people just have truly awful resumes. Even worse is the resume of someone who seems qualified but who goes to the bottom of the pile because their resume is just a simple list of roles and responsibilities.


 

Insights from a Recruiter

As a Master’s degree educated Human Resources professional let me give you some insight into what goes on behind the scenes when you see a job advertisement in the paper or on-line.

Recruiters spend some time carefully crafting a job description that outlines the desired candidate. Pay close attention to it. We have included the desired educated, experience and of course given some idea of the duties required of the successful candidate.

Now, you as the candidate will think, “no problem, I can perform all those duties and here is my resume outlining where and when I did those things”. Except that you have forgotten that you are not the only candidate applying for that job; so why then would I as the Recruiter choose you over any other candidate?

Clearly, you have to sell yourself and how do you do that you may ask? One infallible way is to highlight your accomplishments. Remember, Recruiters get tons of resumes and in order to go through them all, we have to formulate opinions quickly. Subsequently, 6-8 seconds is enough to decide if your resume will be read further or put to the bottom of the pile. Therefore, your resume MUST be properly formatted with clear headings, relevant information (specific to that job) and contain absolutely no errors.

If you are unsure about whether your resume is ready to get you noticed; why not get your resume critiqued?


 

What is a resume critique?

resume-clipart-gg57215963A professional resume critique will cover all the areas that your resume must include for you to be successful in your job search. Here at Write Right International we have developed the ultimate two-page Resume Critique to determine how your resume stands in the areas of:

– First impression
– Summary
– Format
– Writing Style
– Experience and Accomplishments
– Relevance
– Final Assessment

Finally, as a bonus we will teach you the CAR (Challenge, Action and Result) method for writing your accomplishments. The CAR technique is a popular solution to BOTH resume writing and interview situations. This is as employers need to gain a clear picture of your ability to handle obstacles and create the results they need – prior to calling you for an interview.

For more information on resume critiques or to take advantage of the special introductory offer of only $9.99 – please visit – www.writerightinternational.com/resume-critique/

 


What to do when the interviewer asks, “Do you have any questions for me?” 2

Interview

Interview

The interview is coming to a close and your interviewer asks, “Do you have any questions for me?”

If you are like me then you already have your two or three ‘smart’ interview questions ready to go. But what happens when the interviewer already answered your questions. You need back-up questions, right.

I was on LinkedIn today and read this post “The 5 Best Questions a Job Candidate Can Ask” and I realized that I really have missed a few tricks, so I’m sharing them with you.

1. “What do you expect me to accomplish in the first 60 to 90 days?”
2. “What are the common attributes of your top performers?”
3. “What are the one or two things that really drive results for the company?”
4. “What do employees do in their spare time?”
5. “How do you plan to deal with…?” (a major challenge: technological changes, competitors entering the market, shifting economic trends, etc.)

I highly recommend reading the original article for more information – found here.

Good luck in your job search – bye for now 🙂


The Do’s And Don’ts Of Resume Writing! [Infographic] 1

I love infographic, they are pretty awesome – I even try my hand at making them sometimes but sadly, I’m no artist – can’t even draw a straight line with a ruler sometimes 🙁 So whenever I find a really kool infographic I have to share it here.

resume-infographicIf these tips aren’t enough for you to write your own resume, we can do it for you. Purchase one of our premium professional resume writing services and we will write you a brand new, effective resume – guaranteed to get you more interviews. Contact us today!