Tag Archives: blog posts

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!

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!

Keeping Your Website in the Public Eye

There’s something special about summertime! Whether you love spending your free time catching some rays as you work in the garden or soaking up the sun as you relax in the pool, summertime is a great opportunity to unwind. However, summer brings more than fun in the sun. It is a time of planning for the months to come.

Just as the farmer or wise homemaker knows, the fresh produce of the summer must be prepared for use in the fall in winter, the wise business owner is always looking ahead for ways to sure up their business. That may be planning new strategies, finding a fresh way to showcase an existing product or service or perhaps it is to have a stronger presence on the Web. All of these steps and many more are great elements on which to focus.

One of the best things you can do is to keep your company name, services or products in the forefront of the web consumer is by ensuring that your website is ranking in the top pages of web searches for whatever it is that you provide. A great way to do this is by frequent blog posts. These can be something as simple as a few pictures, a video, client reviews or a adding a post about a topic related to your field.

You can also take advantage of the many benefits of social media. After all, with 600 million Facebook users, the multitude of LinkedIn users, millions of Twitter followers and sites like YouTube, Stumbled Upon, My Space and more, you can keep your company in view with just a few minutes a week. It’s up to you.

So, what are you using your summer months for? If you are looking to make your website more interesting, but have not invested a great deal of time in your blog, I would love to hear from you and help you start utilizing your blog post to add new content to your site and keep your page on search engine’s horizon. Contact Write Away Copywriting today to learn how we can help you.

The World of Copywriting: Making the Most of Your Website

In days gone by, if you wanted to advertise your business, it was necessary to spend large amounts of money on printed ads, signs, and media. And, while much of that still holds true today, these are no longer the standard in advertising.  The newcomer to the advertising world is the internet. After all, many people are so busy with work, school, family, sports, etc. that spending hours at the store shopping for just the right items is time they don’t have. To counteract that, the wise service provider is including on-line shopping, customer reviews and coupons, all available at the click of the mouse. Consequently, one of the best ways to make sure that your website ranks high on a web search is through the use of Search Engine Optimization (SEO).

By definition SEO is “The process of improving the volume or quality of traffic to a web site from search engines via “natural” or un-paid search results as opposed to search engine marketing (SEM) which deals with paid inclusion.” Ideally, you want your website to rank high on the list generated by web searches so that you will have more “hits” on your site.  There are several methods that allow a copywriter to decide what the best words/phrases are to ensure high placement on this list.  When you decide to upgrade (or build) your website, you will want to be sure that the content writer understands search engine optimization and will be employing SEO as part of their writing.

When it comes to the actual content of your webpage you can either supply the copywriter with the basic information you want posted and have them insert/edit it to meet search engine optimization needs or you can simply provide the ideas/products to be discussed and ask the copywriter to do the research. Depending on the method chosen, the copywriter will then begin writing your webpage content.  If you opt to have the copywriter do the research, they will employ a variety of research methods ranging from the use of books and magazines, interviews, polls and web sources. Of course, the more work the copywriter has to put into the research and writing process, the more it is likely to cost.

Taking time to explain the needs of your webpage is important. Be sure that your copywriter understands what you are looking to accomplish.  This will result in web content that is more pleasing as well as more SEO friendly.