Category Archives: Write Away Copywriting Blog

8 Things Being Involved in Ministry Has Taught Me about Being a Business Owner

(image from dae-lee.com)

I have been involved in church ministry for over 2 decades. I have worked with preschool children,  elementary children, behind the scenes as an admin assistant, been involved with the music and currently work with the youth. And while the level of involvement, the responsibilities and the manner in which  communication is accomplished has changed over the years, much has stayed the same.

Recently, I was thinking about how often my ministry involvement and having my own business are alike. Here are my observations. If you have others to add to the list, I would love to see them!

  1. If you don’t have a plan for the day, the children/teens will. From time to time I get up and turn on my computer for the day expecting my workload to be light and thinking that I might take time to chill out. More often than not, those are the days that rather than simply working just a few hours, I end up with a full day’s work! (Not a complaint, just an observation.)
  2. You have to be flexible. Just because you have a plan, it doesn’t mean that the lesson prepared will be the lesson taught. In business, you have to be open to new approaches in getting a job done. After all, the Web and the way one does business is always changing.
  3. Mistakes happen; don’t dwell on them! Find a way to correct the problem and deal with it effectively and efficiently. Sometimes that great object lesson or game completely backfires and you have to be able to address the situation and move forward. In business, that idea that sounded so wonderful in your head might not be a great in practice. Be willing to step back, re-assess and move forward again.
  4. You can’t please everyone; sometimes you have to sign off on a project. This doesn’t mean failure, just the need to find a better way. Also keep in mind, that some people refuse to be pleased with a product/service. These people are always going to be there. Learn what you can in those situations and move forward.
  5. The client/customer must feel valued. Even if you cannot provide the exact service or product one might want, going out of your way to provide service with a smile is a great way to build repeat customers. In a ministry, you must make each person, from the team members to the people being served, feel like they matter…because they do!
  6. Everything eventually works out, It might not always be the way you envisioned it, but a solution can usually be found that pleases most of the people involved.
  7. It takes work. There is always something to be done. Whether it is planning the next meeting, writing another blog post, visiting with new clients or ministry team members, etc. Like in business, you can count on ministry taking time.
  8. There is always room for improvement. No business, regardless of its size, can’t be improved with more training, better procedures, etc. Ministry is no different. There will always be ways to make the space more inviting, help leaders to be stronger and attendees feel more welcomed and connected.

5 Ideas for Blog Posts

5 Blog post ideas for the tired blogger (pic from www.gapyear.com)

Having a blog on your website is a great way to boost your site’s SEO, but only if you take the time to post to it on a regular basis. In fact, many experts recommend posting at least once a week. But for many of us, that is a steep assignment as life and the daily needs of running a business can get in the way of blogging. For others, it might not be the time involved for blogging so much as having ideas for the posts.

If you fall into this latter category, then you are not alone. Write Away Copywriting has some ideas and tips for your next blog posts.

Be informed of the latest changes, new products, etc. in your industry so you can share that information with your readers.

Lessons learned about running your business are not only inspiring but lets others know that they can overcome obstacle, too. It also lends some credibility to you and your business.

Ongoing saga of what is going on at your company. Do you have a new product or service? Perhaps you have hired a new sales rep or expanded your service area. Letting your readers know what is going on helps them connect and builds loyalty.

Goals you are working towards also lets people know where your company is headed.

Surveys are a great way to get customer feedback or to ask leaders in your field for their input. Consider posting pictures with names and companies of the survey contributors, as way to boost link opportunities, as well.

Blog posts are a fun way to generate interest and excitement about what is happening at your company. They don’t have to be long, technical diatribes, just something that keeps site guests engaged and wanting to hire you or use your products. So, don’t let that blog page sit empty…write a blog post this week!

Being Number 1– Having a Web Presence is Important!

2012.05.02_seoWhether you are competitive or not, we all like to be in first place. But when it comes to SEO and being found on the Web, there is no greater pleasure than discovering that your website is listed in Google’s top spot….or at least being listed on the first page.  However, this does not happen merely because one has included their primary keywords through out their website, and set up several social media accounts. It takes work.

Having a top ranking webpage means spending time each week at your pc (or whatever mobile device you use) making social media post, interacting with others on the various social platforms, writing monthly blog posts, and ensuring that your site’s SEO practices continue to meet any changes that Google may send. In addition, it means making sure that your website is mobile device friendly -after all, well over 80% of today’s web user are searching the web on something other than their computer.  All in all,   being found on the first page of  Google -or even just keeping up with all the many actions needed to keep your social media followers engage- can be a large part of your week…or it can be a job that you pass off to someone else in your company.

For many large companies, they have a team of people who handle each of these aspects, so the sales persons, designers, marketers, etc. can focus on bringing more business. But if you are a smaller company, then you might find yourself deciding that things like social media and blogs aren’t really that important. This could be a costly mistake! Rather than overlooking blogs and social interaction too time consuming, contact Write Away about managing these job for you.  WAC is always happy to step in and help you keep your web presence on track. Contact WAC today to learn more.

 

 

Having Fun yet Staying Busy!

busy-calendarWhen one owns their own business, it is nice to stay busy. Consequently, it is easy to say, “Yes” each time someone asks if you can do something.  But sometimes I look at my calendar and I think, “My goodness, what was I thinking when I agreed to that many projects for this week!” It is then that I realize that I truly do love my job because no matter how daunting a calendar might look, I find that I love the challenge and the opportunity to learn new things. Yes, there are weeks that are busier than others, but I also love the feeling I have when on Friday afternoon, I look back and realize that my crazy busy week was also one filled with learning and adventures.

This month, I have been asked by a client to read the book, Crazy Busy: A (Mercifully) Short Book about a (Really) Big Problem by Kevin DeYoung.  In reading it, I have learned many tips that will help in both my business and personal life. Also as part of this month’s work, I was blessed to be asked by ClickReady Marketing to write about one of my other passions–cooking! So for a few days, I got to read -then write – about grilling, barbecue and seafood. Yes, I love my job!

So, while I have been busy with work, there are often times that the work feels more like play. Those are the weeks when I am especially glad that I don’t punch a time clock.  Rather, I am blessed to work hours that suit my schedule and fill my calendar with work I enjoy. So to all you who help send me work requests, thanks! You allow me to have fun while staying busy!

 

(Image from stickyegg.com)

It’s in the Cookies!

 

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I love Chinese food! From Moo Goo Gai Pan to Wonton Soup and Egg Foo Young to Spicy Orange Chicken, the spices and textures there comprise a well-planned Chinese meal. But, perhaps as much as the food brings pleasure, I love to open the fortune cookies and read their words of “wisdom”. (By the way, did you know that fortune cookies are not actually Chinese? Rather, they are based on a Japanese recipe and then made popular by Americans.)

Shown here are some fortunes I have received in recent months. No, I don’t base my work – or life- on the little slips of paper, but I must say these four have definitely given me something to think about.

What about you? Do these statements inspire you? What actions do you need to take? If your answer includes developing SEO web content, publishing blog posts, writing newsletters or making the most of social media, then talk to Jan at Write Away Copywriting to learn how to get started. I will be happy to help.

Choosing the Game Plan for Your Company Website

footballfieldI love football! The camaraderie in team spirit, the thinking and strategizing, the physicality and the competiveness all work to make it a great game. But, in order for a team to be a success, they must have a solid game plan. Your business is no different. To have a profitable business, you must have a game plan.

Your plan will be different from the company’s down the block, but you must put some intentionality into what you want you to accomplish. However, sometimes it can be difficult to determine what direction to take for your business, especially when it comes to building a website. You may struggle with whether to have an Events page versus a Blog spot, if you should have a Company History page or an Employee Bio page-or perhaps both.

If you need help in moving forward with your game plan for creating an online presence, then it’s time to talk to a web developer about what needs to be done. This is similar to when the coach lays out the approach for the upcoming game. Whether you enter the discussion with a web developer carrying your tablet or notebook, expect to get answers for the following:

  • How many pages your site must have to fully represent your company?
  • Will you have a blog or an events page? You should have at least one of these, as you don’t want your page to be static or Google is unlikely to notice its existence.
  • To what social media platforms will you link?
  • How much do you want to invest in building your website and its ongoing management?

These are but a few of the questions you will be asked as you craft your wining game plan, but they are very necessary to building an online presence. If you need direction in finding a trustworthy web developer, be sure to contact some of these web developers:

These are all friends of North Carolina copywriter, Write Away Copywriting. They will be happy to help you with the design and content of your website. And, if you should prefer to not do the writing for your website’s content, don’t hesitate to contact J. Slagell. Get started on your web presence game plan today so you can score a touchdown sooner and not later!

Breaking it Down: Managing Your Web Presence and Beyond

thJust having a website is no longer enough. Today’s savvy business owner must keep up with Web trends, use social media, write newsletters or blog posts, plus be in the know about the latest advances in your current field. With so many jobs to do, it can be easy to let things slide or to get overwhelmed. How can you manage everything? By breaking it down into bite size jobs, and delegating jobs you don’t have time for or interest in.

When it comes to time and job management, perhaps one of the most necessary, but still overlooked, aspects of promoting your business is through an online presence. But, like other elements in business, the challenges of building a Web presence can be handled by breaking the job into smaller steps. To help you begin building a Web presence, ask yourself these questions:

What do you want your website to look life?

  • Does it explain who you are or what you do?
  • What is it that makes your product/service stand out?
  • Are there pics of your product or services posted on your website?
  • Do you know what your site’s keywords are (or should be)?
  • Do you have employee bios, company history or other elements that lead to personality and credibility?

What are you doing about social media?

  • What platforms are you using? The top four are Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus and Pinterest, but LinkedIn, Foursquare, Tumblr, and Yelp should not be overlooked. However, not every one of these platforms is a perfect fit for every business, though it is safe to say that Facebook and Twitter should not be overlooked by any business.
  • If you do have social media pages, how often are you posting? Social media pages must be used –at the very least, 1-day a week to be of use. Your posts need to not just promote special events and services offered but also encourage engagement, build rapport with your customers and add personality.
  • Social media pages can be a big asset but only if managed. There will often be people who leave high praise on your page, but there can also be negative comments. Be sure to watch for the negatives so you can deal with the problem sooner, not later.

How are you getting the word out about your company? Do you…

  • Send out a newsletter?
  • Write link articles?
  • Write at least one blog post a month?
  • Have you ever held a lunch and learn event for local businesses?
  • Are you involved with local events where you can share what you do?
  • Take advantage social media advertising campaigns?

These are but a smattering of bite-size actions to consider as you build your Web presence. If you need help with social media, blog posts, articles or other writing elements, contact Write Away Copywriting, to learn how Jan can help.

Creativity: Writing is not for Everyone!

writing help

The writing process is more than merely having a good idea. It is time spent researching your topic and determining the best way to present your findings. For some people, the writing process is far more intimidating than the development aspect, but both portions are necessary in showcasing your new idea. If you have realized that you would much rather be on the design and developing side rather than the writing and advertising side, then don’t beat yourself up over it. After all, everyone had different skill sets.

And, even if your product is unlike anything that has ever been showcase, Write Away Copywriting can help you promote your product. Janet S. is happy to tour your facility to see what you can do, will take notes so that your product or services can be well represented and even get you set up on social media pages, so that you can get the word out about who you are and what you do. You don’t have to be a writer…just focus on the creativity and let Write Away do the rest. If you have questions about WAC can help, please contact Jan S. today.

 

Say What You Mean: Using Keywords in Your Online Presence

 

Snellen_chart.svgI was recently told the following story:

A mother brought her young son to the optometrist because he had complained that he could not see everything that was written on the blackboard. The child is an excellent reader, so the doctor opted to use the traditional alphabet-based eye chart.

The doctor pointed to one of the smaller rows and asked the boy if he could read it. The boy replied, “No, Sir.” The doctor then pointed to a row with larger letters, and again asked, “Can you read this?” The little boy again answered, “No, Sir.” As the doctor moved up the chart, the little boy said that, no, he could not read the row. Finally, the doctor reached the second row from the top– the one just below the big “E” – and once again, the little boy replied that he could not read it.

By now, the doctor and the mother were quite concerned. The optometrist finally asked, “Are you sure you cannot see the letters?” The little boy replied, “Oh! I can see the letters but you asked if I could read it and none of the letters in the rows of letters made words!”

Conclusion: Be sure the words you use convey the message you want the recipients to receive.

Writing for the Web is no different. You have to not only use your company’s keywords, but you need to use then often enough –without overdoing it – to be noticed by the search engines but without forgetting that you are writing for people. After all, keywords are not just important to your Website content, but if you wish to be found on the Web, you need to use them as part of your social media updates, PPC campaigns, landing pages and blog posts.

However, not every company specializes in writing for the Web (also known as Search Engine Optimization) or has time to learn the nuances of SEO writing. As a result, their online presence suffers. This is where NC copywriting professional, Write Away Copy Writing is there to help. Whether it is through providing SEO rich Web content, making weekly/daily social media posts, writing company newsletters or providing keyword rich blog posts, Write Away Copywriting would love to help you get found on the Web.  Contact J. Slagell, your NC SEO copywriter today to learn how the words you use for your business can be incorporated into website and social media posts so that your intended recipients are getting the message you want them to receive.