The Web For Business.com Blog

Internet marketing observations, perspectives, tips and tricks for your education and enlightenment.


Who likes to eat?

Mark Kawabe - Thursday, October 31, 2013

In theory, everyone likes food. I know it's a necessity, but some people seem to enjoy eating more than others. I am starting a month-long experiment that if it goes well, will mean more people read my blog and engage with the content (and hopefully each other). It will also mean I'm going to meet some people and some local restaurants are going to get some business

My experiment is as follows:

I am going to run a weekly draw for a free breakfast or lunch - with me : )

To enter, all you have to do is interact with recent posts on my blog in some way. When you do, you'll receive a ballot in the draw. Different interactions will receive different numbers of ballots, as below.

  • If you like my blog post on Facebook, you will receive one ballot.
  • If you share my blog post, you will receive three ballots.
  • If you comment on my blog post, directly or on Facebook, you will receive five ballots. Only the first comment you make on each post will be counted.

At the end of each week, I will look back at the interactions with the week's blog posts and tally up how many ballots each person gets. Then I'll do a random draw and announce the winner on Monday. It will be announced on the blog and elsewhere, of course : )

This experiment starts today, so any engagements made on blog entries posted during the week of October 28~November 1 will count towards your ballots. Good luck!

P.S. If you're not local to Niagara, my apologies, but unless I happen to be headed to where you are, if you win, you'll have to come to Niagara to collect. While the internet is worldwide, my ability to travel the length and breadth of the globe to have breakfast or lunch is limited. Then again, it would make for an awesome reason to visit other parts of the world!

Wake Up!!

Mark Kawabe - Wednesday, October 23, 2013

The only thing I generally like scrambled during my day are my eggs. And even then, I prefer them over-easy. Here's my tip on not having to scramble to get your online marketing done: wake up earlier.

Really Mark? Yes, really reader :)

Wake up a bit earlier. Say 1/2 hour. I've been tracking how long it takes me to think of an idea, write and edit a post, source an image and do a bit of cross-linking to social media sites that don't automatically pick up my blog. 1/2 hour seems to be about right.

If you're not a "morning person", my suggestion could be a challenge. Here's another: stop watching 1/2 hour of television per day. I'm not talking about the commercials either. You need unbroken time to concentrate on your task. Once you get good at it, you'll likely be able to create a quality post in 15 minutes or less.

Most people can find 1/2 hour of unproductive time during their day. Turn that time into online marketing gold by sharing your expertise and perspectives with your online visitors. Fulfill the promise you made when you created your website and social media accounts. See the benefits instead of the challenges and get cracking!

Rank Up on Google!

Mark Kawabe - Thursday, August 01, 2013

Here's the first line of an email I got today:

"*Name withheld* will get a better Search Engine Rank for www.thewebforbusiness.com/
by submitting your site to over 500,000 Search Engines, Directories and Speciality Sites - but you must act Now!"

My first question:

Can anyone please tell me the name of twenty more search engines that matter?

Good. Now that you've done that (and we all know virtually everyone's list starts with Google), what are the other 499,980+ search engines, directories and specialty sites they're talking about?

They are probably local search engines and directories and link farms.

My second question:

Is submitting your site to a search engine in Latvia or a specialty directory of Kelowna going to help you with your ranking in Google?

Answer: no.

My third question: Why would anyone pay to spam all of those directories with irrelevant submissions?

Answer: I don't know.

Save your money and time. The consensus online is these services don't work.

Sorry to say, but getting good search engine rankings still takes time to create decent, unique content that people (and search engines) will find relevant.

Remember the adage about the best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago - or NOW? The best time to start building great content for search engines (and people) to love was a few years ago - or NOW.

I hope your content tree takes root soon!

Turning the Online Monster into your Servant

Mark Kawabe - Thursday, July 25, 2013

Websites. 1000 social media websites. Blogs. YouTube. SEO. There are thousands of ways to market online. What's a business to do? Here are some tips on how to turn the online monster you've created (or are thinking of creating) into your servant.

Plan

When managing your online presence seems overwhelming, it's probably because you didn't plan. If you don't know where you're going, you'll have no idea if you're getting there or not. Fortunately, you can change this whenever you want.

Implement

This is where many people start - they start doing before planning. If this sounds like you, take a deep breath, back away from your monitor and take some time to plan your activities. Make a schedule. Define your goals. Then work on making them happen.

Social media sites make it easy to implement. Slap up a post or a picture or comment and voila! You're done! But how do you know it's what's most beneficial?

Websites or other corporate social media tools that are not current demonstrate a failure to implement. Most businesses can improve in this area. My business included.

Measure

Do you know how many people read your last Facebook post? Did anyone like them? Do you know who they were? How did that Facebook post compare to the previous one - and the one before it?

How about your site traffic? Is it up or down from last month? How about your search engine rankings?

Not measuring the results of online activities means you're shooting at targets without knowing you've hit them. This is why many business owners say marketing online doesn't work for them. They or their staff don't measure the results they get.

Analyze, Study & Plan Again

So you've planned, implemented and measured. Can things be improved? Of course they can. Take what you've done and build on it to make it better.

If you don't know HOW to make it better, you're in luck. There are at least a few million pages of online advice (including this one) on how to improve every aspect of your online presence.

If you've read my earlier blog posts, you'll know this stuff isn't rocket science. It's "common sense" - but we all know how prevalent that is these days. I came across a website just before writing this post that proudly exclaimed their latest news on the homepage - except it was from 2011. When the primary purpose of a website is to create confidence about doing business with you, how does something like that benefit your business?

Most "problems" with websites and online marketing are solved by following the steps above. If you don't have time or patience to follow the prescription, then feel free to call "Dr. Mark" at 905-227-6667. I'd be happy to help you manage your online marketing needs so you don't have to.

You Have Choices

Mark Kawabe - Monday, February 27, 2012

What did you choose to do online today?

What was the purpose of your actions?

How will you measure their success?

The work day is almost done. You have 1.5 hours left.

It only takes a few minutes to inform, inspire, or lead by example.

I'm hoping you spent a few minutes today to be special.

It's Monday. How you live it is your choice.

Choose well : )

It's never too late . . .

Mark Kawabe - Tuesday, February 21, 2012

. . . to start moving in the right direction.

What could you do today to start moving in the right direction?

More importantly, are you certain you're doing the right things right now?

It's Monday. The start of a new week. A chance to start again.

A chance to change. To grow. To improve.

How will you choose to spend this day?

Do you measure?

Mark Kawabe - Thursday, February 16, 2012

And how?

Do you rely on statistics from your ISP to know how your website is performing?

In my opinion, most of the stats I've seen from ISPs are useless.

It doesn't take much to install Google Analytics. It's free.* It measures most of the things you need to know about your site's performance.

Do you have it installed? If not, you can have it installed today. In most cases it should take around 15 minutes by an experienced website developer. Budget 30 minutes if you call someone unfamiliar with your website to do the job.

 

*Free: depends on your perspective. There is no financial cost to use Google Analytics. However, you do give Google information about your website's performance. Whether that matters to you or not is up to you.

What's New for YOU in 2012?

Mark Kawabe - Tuesday, January 03, 2012

Welcome to 2012. I'm glad you've made it this far. What's going to be new for you in 2012?

Here are my predictions about the changes most small business owners will make in 2012 to their online marketing efforts.

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If you don't see anything listed above, well, I hope you get my point.

It is my prediction that MOST small business owners will continue to market themselves online more or less the same as they've been doing.

I think there are many reasons for this, and they're remarkably similar to the reasons most other new years resolutions fail.

  • It's too much work.
  • I don't have time.
  • It won't make a big difference.
  • I don't know how I can do things better.
  • I don't have time to learn how to do things better.
  • I don't want to learn something new.

And so forth.

Most want results without the investment required to achieve them. That's nothing new.

What I'm hoping is new this year is for more people to choose to prove my predictions wrong.

I wish you peace, health, happiness and prosperity in 2012.

With my Best Regards,

Mark Kawabe