Vik Rajan

Top Seven Overlooked Benefits Of Testimonials

Top Seven Overlooked Benefits Of Testimonials by Vikram Rajan

When was the last time you updated your website’s testimonials? Google and other search engines promote websites with frequent updates. Do you find the process awkward — asking a client for a testimonial, following up to actually get it and then publishing it on your website?

Read the whole article on Forbes.

 

Vikram Rajan, Co-Founder
Telephone: (888) 952-4630
Email: Vik@phoneBlogger.net
Website: phoneBlogger.net

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Help Us Help You…More

Every Monday morning, your dedicated phoneBlogger.net team huddles on a conference call reviewing what I call the “Vital Signs” for each client. The “vitals” include:
  • when your latest blog article was published,
  • where it was promoted,
  • the date of your latest newsletter, 
  • the upcoming step of your upcoming article,
  • your idea bank & approved article bank, etc. 

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7 Surprising Benefits of Testimonials

{Read length: 7 minutes} Why do we showcase testimonials on our websites and other marketing? We all know that testimonials edify our credibility and trust; nowadays, this is called “social proof.” Of course, some use testimonials to “humblebrag” (y’know, to humbly brag about yourself – in this case, through a third party). Citing testimonials helps to overcome objections from prospects; testimonials also combat negative reviews found online. Those are 4 basic benefits: You may be overlooking 7 other surprising benefits of testimonials.

Before we get to those, when was the last time you updated your website’s testimonials? Even if you do have easy access to your site (via WordPress, etc.) it can be a pain to ask a client for a testimonial, and then follow-up to actually get it, and then to get it onto your website, and then to do this over and over again. Here’s a cheap plug: Check out Raviate.com; it’ll automate this whole process for you, make it fun, and really capture your client’s passion. Now back to our regularly scheduled programming: Continue reading

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Apps to Make Social Media Less Time-Consuming

Apps to Make Social Media Less Time Consuming by Vikram Rajan

{4:05 minutes to read} It’s hard to keep up with all of the emails you get from clients and other VIPs. It’s also hard to keep up with the marketing outreach you have to do. It’s equally hard to find time to keep up with all the social media networks like Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter in your day-to-day work.

phoneBlogger.net can help you with the blogging. But there are also phone apps that you can use to keep up with others and market yourself in an authentic way. In a few taps, you can like, comment on, and share what your friends & VIPs are doing.

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3 Ways to Increase Your Twitter Followers

3 Ways to Increase Your Twitter Followers by Vikram Rajan

{4:09 minutes to read} Twitter is best for anyone who wants to be seen on a stage. This includes the obvious people who are usually on stage, including performers, entertainers, and celebrities, but also government officials and politicians, authors, and subject matter experts. If you are looking for more speaking engagements and more opportunities to be behind a microphone and literally, if not figuratively, on a stage, then Twitter is the right platform for you.

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Does Your Marketing Actually Make You Money?

Does Your Marketing Actually Make You Money? by Vikram Rajan

We are pleased to share this article by guest author, Rod Bristol.

OKAY! You went to your annual conference and heard the highly paid, highly profane keynote speaker rail at you for 90 minutes about how you need to run Facebook ads! You got convicted! You then went through the process of creating the ad, measuring the ad for reach, amplification, content, and engagement trends; figuring out if anyone likes it, comments on it, or actually shares it with others. But how do you know if you’re actually MAKING ANY MONEY from the ad?

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What’s the Right Length for Your Blog?

What’s the Right Length for Your Blog? by Vikram Rajan

{3:07 minutes to read} There really isn’t one perfect length for blog articles. But given people’s short attention spans these days, you should make sure that readers remain interested from beginning to end. If you’re using your blog as a marketing vehicle, keep your articles short and simple.

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4+ Surprising Benefits of Testimonials

4+ Surprising Benefits of Testimonials by Vikram Rajan

{2:30 minutes to read} When we obtain a testimonial, we benefit in 4 ways:

1. When our clients say it in their own words, we’re able to fully understand the value that we’re providing. Sometimes testimonials on websites and brochures don’t sound “authentic” because they are not in the client’s actual words.

2. When clients express or vocalize the value that they have experienced, they are reiterating it to themselves too—essentially reaffirming their loyalty. If a competing vendor or practitioner comes knocking on their door, literally or figuratively, hopefully, their testimonial has already resold them.

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The Final Phase of the Sales Funnel: Asking for Testimonials and Referrals

The Final Phase of the Sales Funnel: Asking for Testimonials and Referrals by Vikram Rajan

{2:55 minutes to read} As professional marketers, our goal is not to close the sale but to open a relationship. This is the difference between a customer and a client.

When a potential client, aka “a prospect,” walks through the door or calls on the phone, the sales process has begun. A sales “funnel” is wider at the top, where there are multiple prospects, and grows narrower as a smaller number of prospects actually become active clients. Inside the sales funnel, there are many phases, involving multiple meetings and interactions, before a prospect becomes a client.

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Is Your AVP Still Right for You?

Is Your AVP Still Right for You? by Vikram Rajan{3:27 minutes to read} More than just being informative and showcasing your expertise, your blog should be an expression of who you are… as a professional, and as a person. Your blog can be a handy tool for referrals. The more distinguished your blog is, the more interesting it tends to be. When someone reads such a blog, it ought to sound like you. Correspondingly, your partner’s article would represent her voice.

Then again, this is my preference and suggestion for you. You may, however, prefer your blog not to sound like you, and not to have the personality of any one person in your firm. Well, that’s why we call it your “Author Voice Preferences” (AVP). We document such preferences in your Master Checklist (Google Spreadsheet).

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3 Ways to Measure Results

3 Ways to Measure Results by Vikram Rajan

{4:00 minutes to read} There’s an old adage: “Only 20% of marketing works; 80% is a waste. We just don’t know which 80%!” Even worse, the 80% is a changing set: What worked yesterday may not work tomorrow, and so forth. Unfortunately, much of marketing is trial & error and A/B testing. Still, I find clients who have “tried nothing and are all out of ideas” (a Simpsons quote; email me for the episode).

How can we improve the odds if we don’t measure what we’re doing? A leading indicator of positive results is our automated, systematic, and repeated actions. These include our marketing technologies (e.g., Constant Contact and its autoresponder, and a new entrant to automating testimonial marketing, Raviate, which is looking for private testers — email me).

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7 Traits of Marketing Maestros

7 Traits of Marketing Maestros by Vikram Rajan

{2:20 minutes to read} I’ve only had one real boss: my father. He’s a deep thinker & very learned—inspirational to many people. He taught me pretty much everything I know in terms of business.

I’d like to share one of the best lessons he taught me, which still rings true on a daily basis: 7 core values around which he based his company. They are known by the acronym MAESTRO (he was from the AT&T days of “TLA”—Three Letter Acronyms—and was a fan of acronyms himself).

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Redesigning Your Website? I Told You So! Part 1

Redesigning Your Website? I Told You So! Part 1 by Vikram Rajan

{4:20 minutes to read} One of my favorite blog article ideas on blogbrainstormer.com is in the client Q&A section. It’s often dubbed the “Anti-Success Story” or the “I-Told-You-So Story.”

As an advisor to others, you may have had an opportunity to tell your clients not to do something, but for whatever reason, they went ahead and did it, leaving you to clean up the mess. While that can lead to greater billing and, in some ways, reinforces your expertise and wise counsel, it can also be a scenario or lesson you can present to others in a blog article. Of course, it’s important to do it without being smug or revealing anything private, confidential or otherwise embarrassing to your client.

The opposite is also true in terms of telling the client to do something. For whatever reason, they don’t and, once again, you find yourself cleaning up a mess that could have been prevented. “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure,” and may be a valuable vaccine to prevent frustrations down the road.

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3 Reasons to Keep Marketing During Your Busy Season

3 Reasons to Keep Marketing During Your Busy Season by Vikram Rajan

{4:30 minutes to read} Very often, during the barrage of business, there isn’t as much time or energy for marketing. Yet, the busy season doesn’t literally happen all at once: It happens sometimes over the course of 3 or 4 months, which means someone in that 2nd or 3rd month is very often being affected by the people who “pulled the trigger” during the 1st month.

For example, some clients wait until April to contact their accountant to file their taxes. Others, who may be ready and are much more organized, approach their tax preparer in February or even during the fall to plan for the end of the year; they are very often the ones leading by example for those who are coming in March and April.

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Asking for Testimonials is AWKWARD! Not with These 6 Tricks…

Asking for Testimonials is AWKWARD! Not with these 6 Tricks...by Vikram Rajan

{5:00 minutes to read} How often are you asking clients to give testimonials? When they thank you for the great service you’ve given them, how can you leverage that for more word-of-mouth referrals?

Considering the ubiquity of social media sites like Yelp, Avvo, G+, Fb and LinkedIn Endorsements, it’s natural to question “the Truthiness” of online reviews. The good news is that there are alternative ways to obtain, grow and share testimonials.

And they need not only be from clients. For example, testimonials can be garnered from:

  • Colleagues who refer business to you.

  • Members of the community who believe in your character and believe in who you are as a person.

  • Friends who happen to be business colleagues as well, even if they originally started out vice versa.

  • Members of the audience at the end of your presentations or seminars, or panels you are on.

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5+ Ways We SEO Your Articles

5+ Ways We SEO Your Articles by Vikram Rajan

{2:15 minutes to read}

Recently a client emailed me to ask if we use Search Engine Optimization (SEO) practices to enhance the articles that we edit for her.

At phoneBlogger.net, we are SEO-conscious, and we use this knowledge when editing our client’s articles. Here’s how we “SEO” our client’s articles:

1. WordPress comes optimized for SEO & mobile by default. It’s like a sports car being aerodynamic, rather than an old-fashioned website reminiscent of a clunky station wagon.

2. When publishing the article, we pull out keywords (“tags/categories”) which WordPress & Google use to index the article (and create links back to the article, further boosting SEO).

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Are My Blog & Website Mobile-Friendly?

Are My Blog & Website Mobile-Friendly by Vikram Ragan

{2 minutes to read} One of our clients emailed me a question, “Vik, I was wondering if you think my main website is mobile-friendly?” This is how I answered my client’s question:

1) Your main website is not mobile-friendly, Google offers this tool & solutions (which are more than a lay person can handle):

Google Mobile-Friendly Test

“What can I do to fix it?” she asked.

2) Your main website can become mobile-friendly by turning it into a WordPress website, and incorporating your blog.

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Are Your Email Lists VIP-Centric?

Are Your Email Lists VIP-Centric? By Vikram Rajan

{4:15 minutes to read}

Email marketing is convenient and efficient. Yet, efficiency & effectiveness are often counter to one another. Meaning, as something is more efficient, the less effective it often is. Very often the most effective forms of marketing aren’t a very efficient use of time or resources. However, quality time spent with VIP relationships often pay even greater dividends (than mass blasting, for example).

I was asked a great question last week by a new referral relationship: “How do you help clients grow their email lists?” It’s actually not about increasing the quantity, but rather increasing the quality of the email list, I told him.

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What’s Better than Know, Like, Trust?

What’s Better than Know, Like, Trust? By Vikram Rajan

{1:30 minutes to read} In order to be recommended, you must be remembered.

“Know, Like, and Trust” has become an often bandied-about sales & marketing term. Productive relationships go through 3 phases:

  1. Knowing one another.
  2. Liking one another.
  3. And trusting in each other’s expertise & character: Each side must deliver on promises.

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When is the Right Time to Send Your Article?

 When is the Right Time to Send Your Article? By Vikram Ranjan

{3:50 minutes to read} What time is the right time to send your email newsletter to promote your blog? At phoneBlogger.net we have a set of best practices that maximize your audience and your impact. Many sources, including Constant Contact, have determined what times are best to post to social media or send email newsletters.

Friday afternoons are considered among the worst times to send emails or posts. The best days are Tuesday, Wednesday, & Thursday. The best hours are between 10:00 a.m. & 2:00 p.m. — when people have more free time & mental focus. The 10:00 a.m. & 2 p.m. hours are similar. After lunch, people get back to their desks & clean out their inboxes.

In the morning, you’re usually dealing with a deluge – by 10:00 a.m., you’ve gone through all of your inboxes. So when a fresh, new email arrives, you’re able to look at it. Even if it’s an email newsletter from a sales professional, you have a few minutes to peruse it.

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