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30 Great Franchise Business Ideas

July 21, 2021 0

30 Great Franchise Business Ideas

If you’re a new entrepreneur looking for profitable business ideas with minimal risks, a franchise business can be a great place to start.

A franchise business carries the success, credibility, and popular associations of established brands, reducing the need for extensive marketing and brand building for you as a franchise owner. This can save you much time and money as you focus on making your business more profitable.

A franchise business model can also help you scale rapidly because you inherit the operation processes and framework from the licensing company.

Think about it this way: What would be easier?

Starting a company from scratch, working on branding, operations, funding, and marketing—or buying a license for a pre-established company?

In most cases, it’s the latter. That’s why entrepreneurs are so eager to buy into franchise businesses.

What Is a Franchise Business?

A franchise business is a licensing model of business where a successful company allows you to run a version of its business using its logo, processes, and in-house resources.

Think of the many fast-food stores you see worldwide.

These “franchise” businesses exist in multiple locations, selling the same products under the same branding, which helps build loyal customers and instant brand recognition. Some examples of worldwide franchises include McDonald’s, Domino’s Pizza, and Subway.

Option #1: Start a “Home Services” Franchise Business

Home service franchises offer services related to moving and housing. These work best for regional companies as most people prefer using local home repair and renovation services to save time and money.

Painting Franchise Business

As more and more houses are built every year, the demand for painters keeps growing. You can cash in on this growth by launching a painting franchise business.

Companies like CertaPro Painters let you start your own business under their name, so you can begin offering painting services using the CertaPro branding.

Great Franchise Business Ideas - Painting Franchise Business

Repair Services

No matter where you live, there is always a need for repairing services.

If you’re looking for a steady business with minimal market shocks, start a repair service franchise. This model is fairly stable because houses need recurring repairs—meaning you have the opportunity to develop long-term customers.

Some popular options include Paul Davis Restoration, Mr. Handyman, and 911 Restoration.

Moving Services

Another popular home service franchise business opportunity lies in the moving industry. Beyond moving series, these franchises offer temporary storage and junk removal services. You can find franchise business opportunities with companies like UNITS Moving & Portable Storage.

Although, it’s important to keep in mind that managing a moving business can be incredibly tricky because there’s a greater degree of responsibility involved.

House Cleaning Services

As the average citizen moves towards continuously busier lifestyles, the need for house cleaning services has grown significantly over the past few years. You can benefit from this booming trend by launching a housecleaning franchise business with companies like Chem-Dry and Merry Maids.

Option #2: Start a “Retail Franchise” Business

When people think about shopping, retail is one of the first industries that come to mind.

Retail franchise businesses come in many shapes and sizes. This way you can focus on an industry that truly matches your interests and skillset.

Fitness Franchise

The fitness industry, and especially sportswear, is thriving.

It’s one of the few sectors that saw huge growth throughout the pandemic, with people paying more attention to their health than ever before. From training shoes to yoga accessories, people have an ongoing need for fitness products.

Starting a fitness franchise business with companies like Anytime Fitness and Planet Fitness can help you target these customers and scale your business.

Real Estate Franchise

Real estate is a tricky but lucrative market for aspiring entrepreneurs. It has a steep learning curve but can help you build a profitable business with a generous cash flow—if done right.

Companies like HomeVestors of America are a great place to start a real estate franchise business.

Car Wash Franchise

Car wash franchises with strong branding can benefit from repeat-purchase loyalty, helping you attract new customers and build long-term relationships—keeping your business profitable.

Some great car wash franchise options include Prime Car Wash, Tommy’s Express, and Mr. Clean.

Sports Franchise

If you have a passion for sports, consider investing in a sporting business. Companies like Soccer Shots offer great franchise opportunities with a mission-driven business model.

You can also focus on companies selling sporting goods, offering training spaces, sports club memberships, and other sport-adjacent activities.

Furniture Franchise

Similar to the growing popularity of housing services, furniture stores are seeing a surge in demand. From selling individual furniture pieces to offering rental packages, franchises in the furniture industry offer a wide range of scaling opportunities.

You can work with franchises like Bloomin’ Minds and Slumberland Furniture.

Option #3: Start a “Food Franchise” Business

People love food, especially fast food. So if you’re looking for a hot-selling, customer-favorite franchise business, start a food franchise. These are super popular, tend to do well economically, and carry great brand recognition across a wide geographic region.

Pizza Franchise Business

Popular food items like pizza have the potential to sell well, offering you a chance to build a profitable franchise business. This is one of those categories where there’s tight competition, but great growth potential.

You have many options to choose from including Domino’s Pizza, Pizza Hut, and Papa John’s.

Coffee Franchise Business

Coffee is another hot-selling item, literally.

If you’re a fan of the beverage and have a desire to manage a consistent business, starting a coffee franchise can be a great option for you. Consider working with companies like Dunkin’, Aroma Joe’s Coffee, and Scooter’s Coffee.

Great Franchise Business Ideas - Coffee Franchise Business

Ice Cream Franchise Business

If you’re looking to target the frozen foods market, consider starting an ice cream franchise business. Brands like Baskin-Robbins have a huge customer base that you can leverage with a franchise business model.

You can also consider companies like Kona Ice which are smaller than the top industry names but offer great variety and opportunities for reaching new customers.

Burger Franchise

When we talk about franchise businesses, we often picture McDonald’s, which is still popular decades after its launch. If you’re looking for that kind of growth, consistency, and brand power, choose a burger franchise.

You can also choose other companies like Wendy’s, Burger King or Carl’s Jr.

Noodle Franchise

Starting a noodle franchise business can offer a great breakfast and snacking option for local residents. You, as a business owner, can build relationships, expand locations, and still remain consistent in your offerings.

You can work with companies like Nothing But Noodles and Noodles & Company to launch noodle franchise businesses.

Option #4: Start a “Professional Services” Franchise Business

If none of the options so far appeal to you and you want to take a more personalized approach, consider launching a professional services franchise business. These offer the greatest potential for customization, adaption, and variation compared to other franchise business models.

With a professional service franchise business, you have a multitude of customer retention opportunities that can be quite profitable in the long run.

Shipping and Mailing Franchise

Nearly every company and residential community needs a shipping and mailing service today. This rising demand offers promising potential for franchise owners.

Established brands like The UPS Store can help you find your customers faster and retain them for decades to come.

Such franchise business models also offer a huge expansion potential as shipping and mailing companies continue to expand the geographical areas they serve.

Printing Franchise

Just like shipping and mailing companies are a cornerstone of work-life across several industries, printing businesses are also a key component of modern living.

The best part of starting a printing franchise business is that it’s easier to set up and manage. It’s relatively low-maintenance, carries low risk, and has much potential to grow, making it an ideal option for new entrepreneurs.

Look for companies like Minuteman Press for launching a successful printing franchise.

Staffing Franchise

Another popular corporate franchise option is a staffing franchise business. Companies like Spherion and Express Employment Professionals help other companies fill their staff positions by connecting them to people looking for jobs.

These franchise business models can help you build positive relationships with major companies in your industry while making a decent profit.

Training Franchise

Along with staffing agencies, companies also need training providers to help upskill their staff. Whether it’s quarterly seminars or yearly upskilling boot camps, working with companies like Sandler Training and Dale Carnegie can help you establish an impactful thought leadership and corporate training franchise business model.

Great Franchise Business Ideas - Training Franchise

Design Franchise

From rebranding to interior decor, design teams are a key player in most major industries.

If you’re passionate about art, decoration and understand the fundamentals of marketing design, you can work with companies like Closets by Design and Decorating Den Interiors to launch a design franchise business.

Frequently Asked Questions About Starting Franchise Businesses

Here are some common questions new entrepreneurs ask when they’re planning to launch a franchise business.

Do I own the rights to a franchise business name?

When you buy a franchise business, you’re only buying the license to use the company’s resources and not the rights to own or manage the company itself. This means, you can own and control the franchise but the original company still remains an independent entity.

Do I have to pay a royalty when I sell through the franchise?

The payment structure for each franchise business depends on the agreement you have with the owning company. For instance, a company may choose to accept royalties for every purchase in addition to a licensing fee. Companies can also work with a fixed-fee payment structure for each franchise location.

What is the difference between a franchise fee and a royalty fee?

While both the franchise fee and royalty fee are necessary to own a franchise, the two are not the same. The franchise fee is the cost of buying a license to use the owning company’s branding and resources. A royalty fee, on the other hand, is a revenue-based fee you pay based on your sales and profits.

An easy way to remember this is to keep in mind that franchise fees are one-time payments for buying the trading license, while royalties are ongoing payments based on your revenue.

Can I sell a franchise?

If you’re not happy with your franchise business, you always have the option to sell it. Franchise exits are pretty common, especially in larger cities where multiple businesses are vying for consumer attention.

However, it’s important to check your agreement before making any selling decisions. Your owning company may not allow you the rights to sell their franchise outside of their organization.

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Franchise Businesses Conclusion

Starting a franchise business has many benefits to offer entrepreneurs at all levels. New business owners may find it easier to run a pre-established business than starting a new brand from scratch.

Mid-level entrepreneurs can also use a franchise to pivot their career, especially if it’s an industry change.

Finally, senior entrepreneurs can hugely benefit from the brand recognition the owning company has built.

Most franchise brands have thousands of loyal customers who become a source of recurring revenue for the business. If you’re able to leverage this reach for further growth, it can be easier to scale your franchise business rapidly.

Which franchise business idea best suits your needs? Which idea would you like to try first?

[…]

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Internet Marketing

The 10 Elements of a Successful Social Media Profile

July 21, 2021 0

The 10 Elements of a Successful Social Media Profile

Having good social media profiles can get you more exposure online, help you connect with your fans or customers, and improve your online reputation.

Unless you have a major site associated with your name (like NeilPatel.com), your social media profiles are usually the first results Google shows when someone searches for you.

Start thinking of each social media profile you create as a landing page for your personal brand.

Your social media profiles are possibly the first encounter that someone is going to have with your brand, and you want that first impression to make the visitor interested in knowing more about you.

Here are 10 elements of successful social media profiles.

Element #1: Your Social Media Profile Display Name

Okay, this seems fairly basic. The name that displays on your social media profile should just be your own name, right?

Usually, that’s correct. However, sometimes that doesn’t make the most sense.

On platforms like Twitter, where you don’t have to use a real name, a pseudonym might make more sense.

Element #2: Your Social Media Username and URL

On most social networks, your username is included in your URL, and it’s often different from your display name. Usually, you can’t change your username, so choose it carefully.

If possible, it’s usually best to just go with your own name. Sometimes, if you’re the face of your company, the company name might work better.

On Twitter, Brian Dean isn’t @briandean but @Backlinko, since that’s the name of his company.

Backlinko Twitter Social Media  Profile Example

Finally, while it isn’t always possible, try to keep your username the same across platforms.

It can be confusing when this isn’t the case, like Instagram being @yourname and Twitter being @yourcompany or @yourmiddlename.

Element #3: Your Social Media Profile Picture

Should you go with a logo or a personal picture?

Of course, if it’s for a personal account, you should almost always go with a headshot.

What about for a company? It’s a tough call, but it really depends on your goals. If you run a smaller operation or are the face of your company, include a headshot of you.

That’s what Brian does on Twitter, even with his company usernames. This also applies to people that are brands themselves, like musicians, artists, or politicians.

If you have a more recognizable brand or don’t want your company to be associated with you specifically, go with the logo.

Microsoft Instagram Social Media Profile Example

It’s also a good idea to stick with the same (or at least a similar) photo across different social networks. That way you’re easier to recognize on different platforms.

Element #4: Your Social Media Profile Link

This varies from one social media network to the next, but be sure to seek out any opportunity to get your link on the main page of your social profile.

For example, you can add a link on the “front page” of your profiles on Twitter and LinkedIn.

Make sure that your link is front and center so that people can find it quickly and click through to your website.

Another good idea for your links is to create a social network-specific landing page so you can track which profiles are bringing your site the most traffic.

You can use these pages to offer a special discount for people who have found you on Twitter or share information that is specific to a network, like recent blog posts you have written about Facebook.

Element #5: Your Social Media Profile Bio

Your main social profile bio should usually include a sentence or two about yourself or your business. Think of it as a perfect place to put your elevator pitch and include keywords.

In a few words, what would you say about your business? It’s also a good idea to use your bio to its fullest potential. Some sites, like Twitter, only let you write a short description.

If you’re on a platform like LinkedIn, your “about” section can have up to 2,000 characters. This is a huge opportunity to explain what you’re all about and make a great first impression.

To make this succeed, you’ll want to add more than just a simple description of what you’ve done and your current projects. Instead, create a story with a basic call to action.

For example, you can tell how you started with the industry you’re working in. What got you interested in it, and what makes you stick around and keep learning?

Larry Kim LinkedIn Social Media Profile Example

Finally, you can finish your bio with a simple call to action. This can be a link to a free report, an offer for someone to call you, or even a mission statement asking “will you join me?”

Element #6: Your Social Media Profile Interests

Some profiles allow you to have additional extended information about yourself in the form of favorite books, television shows, movies, and so on.

A lot of people skip over this, especially when it comes to business profiles, but that is a big mistake.

Look at these fields as an additional place to get some great value and connections

I doubt there is a niche out there that doesn’t have at least one or two published books.

Find books, documentaries, and profiles of influential people in your industry and add those in these additional fields (assuming you actually enjoy them, of course!)

This adds credibility and a new level of connection you can build with people who are learning about you for the first time.

Element #7: Your Social Media Profile Background or Cover Image

Different platforms have different requirements, but most social networks today have some way to add a larger image behind your main profile page.

Some users, especially on Twitter and LinkedIn, choose to use the default background image, but this is a mistake.

A customized background will allow you to share additional information and give personality to you or your brand.

Don’t make it distracting or more important than your profile picture, but a great cover image can go a long way to personalizing your social page.

Product Hunt Facebook Social Media Profile Example

On some platforms, like Facebook, this can even be a video. If you have the option (and decent video), this can be even an even more engaging way to connect with others.

Element #8: Your Social Media Profile Privacy Settings

After you have all of your profile filled out and pictures uploaded, the next thing that you will need to take a look at is your privacy settings.

These vary from network to network, but you will want to make sure that the information you would like to be public is viewable.

Chances are, if this is a business-related profile, you’ll want almost everything to be public. Of course, if your profile is more personal nature, you may want to hide some things.

Element #9: Your Social Media Activity

Once your profile setup is complete, your on-going mission will be to maintain a healthy level of activity on your main social networks.

It’s not enough to leave a profile blank. You need to contribute to the platform and build connections. After all, that’s what they’re there for in the first place.

No matter what social network you’re on, the basic guidelines still apply. You’ll want to connect with friends and followers by asking questions and responding to comments.

Provide value by posting interesting ideas, or at least sharing interesting and relevant things you find.

If you’re in any groups, become an active participant. Be helpful, connect with others in the group, and share things the group will find interesting.

Element #10: Your Social Media Promotion

Finally, there is nothing like a little healthy promotion of your social network profiles to help more people find and connect with you.

Be sure to add your social networking profile links to your website, email signature, and business card.

Also, don’t forget to interlink your profiles to each other. Many networks have places to include links to other networks, and you can and should use them whenever possible.

Stay connected, become an active member on the social network of your choice, and you’ll start acquiring a following.

Social Media Profile FAQs

What should my profile picture be?

This depends on what you do. If you have a personal profile or your brand centers around who you are, use a headshot. If you have a business where you aren’t the face, your logo will work well.

What should I do if my preferred username is taken on another platform?

Using the same name is ideal but not always possible. If your username is taken on another platform, then use something very similar.

What should I put in my social media bio?

Your social media bio should have everything people need to know about your brand. Let them know what makes your brand stand out, what you do, and a call to action whenever possible.

How can I do to personalize my social media profiles?

You can brand your social media profile by using a custom cover image with your brand colors and logo. You can also put important information in your cover image. On some platforms, you can also add your interests. This is a great way to add a personal touch.

What can I do to promote my social media profiles?

You can cross-promote your social media profile with each other, by adding all of your links to each profile. You can also all links to your website, and email campaigns.

Social Media Profiles Conclusion

If you’re getting started with social media marketing, the first step is to set up your accounts and profiles correctly.

If you’ve already been in the game for a while, it’s probably time to take a look at the profiles you set up.

Are there ways to improve what you already have online? Is the profile picture you uploaded last year still relevant? Does your bio or link need updating?

Since it’ll be the first impression many people see, it’s worth spending some time to improve your social media presence and make it compelling and interesting.

What strategies have you used to improve your social media profile?

[…]

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How to Utilize Automated Email Marketing

July 21, 2021 0

How to Utilize Automated Email Marketing

What are your goals with email marketing?

If you’re going to achieve those goals and see a return on investment, then chances are you’re not going to be able to do it without some level of automated email marketing.

What Is Automated Email Marketing?

Automated email marketing is a series of emails you automatically send to your prospects or customers. Using an autoresponder, you can schedule emails to send based on your audience’s interactions with your business. 

For example, when someone signs up for your newsletter, you can automatically send out an automated welcome email.

Don’t let the automated part fool you, though. 

To be effective with automated email, what you’re producing should be far from spam. Instead, it’s high-quality, personalized content that your audience has signed up for. 

This may all sound a little bit complicated, but the great thing about modern automated email marketing is that the software is simple to use and offers you some powerful capabilities. 

Why Should You Automate Your Emails?

The key here is scale. If you’ve got thousands of people in your sales pipeline, it’s impossible to write out individual emails for everyone that signs up. 

Instead, automated email marketing allows you to create email series that are perfectly tailored to your audience’s needs and send them out at a specific time. Rather than spending all your time writing and sending out individual emails, you can focus on creating the perfect copy that inspires your audience to take action

That’s great, but don’t you lose the personal aspect?

If you’re writing everyone individual emails, then switching to automated email marketing reduces your level of personalization. Each email won’t be unique, but it can still be personal. 

Email responders allow you to segment your audience based on their interests and behaviors. 

Say someone signs up for my email newsletter from a page titled “Link Building 101.” I can put them into a link-building segment so they receive handy tips on how to improve their backlink profile. Someone who signs up through a page titled “50 Content Ideas for Niche Websites” will go into a different segment and receive different emails. 

Segmentation means there are endless ways you can personalize your automated emails, so you’re getting both convenience and personalization.

This combination clearly works because email automation is the most popular form of marketing automation, with 64 percent of businesses using it. With email marketing offering an average ROI of $42 for every $1 spent, this gives you plenty of reasons to automate your emails. 

When to Use Automated Email Marketing

Automated email marketing can bring big results, but it’s not always the best option. Here are a few of the times when automated emails can help you make the right impression with your target audience. 

1. Abandoned Carts

Abandoned carts are highly frustrating. 

The person has gotten so close to making a purchase, yet you’ve lost them at the last moment. There are many reasons why people abandon carts, but a common one is that they’re not quite ready to buy yet.

Just because someone isn’t ready to buy today doesn’t mean they won’t be soon, and an automated email is a perfect way to keep them engaged. 

When someone abandons their cart, you can schedule an email to go out to them, prompting them to return and complete their purchase. 

The average cart abandonment rate is estimated to be 77.13 percent, so bringing people back to your checkout page through well-timed emails can be invaluable. 

2. Sending Automated Email Newsletters to Subscribers 

Once someone leaves your website, you may never see them again. 

If you’ve got their email address, you’ve got an opportunity to keep the connection alive and build a relationship (hopefully until they become a repeat customer). Just having someone’s email doesn’t achieve this, though, and instead, you’ve got to be able to offer something valuable.

In the case of a newsletter, you’re offering your amazing content to grow the relationship and keep bringing people back to your website.

3. Promotional Emails

One of the key things with email marketing is providing value to the customer. It’s no good spamming them with links to your product all the time because they’re simply going to treat it as spam. 

That being said, we’re here to market our businesses, and sometimes that means sending promotional emails. 

To get the maximum value from this, you want to make sure your promotions are part of a carefully planned email series, and it’s almost impossible to do this without automated emails. 

4. Welcome Emails

When someone signs up for your email communication, it’s a good idea to send out a welcome email. 

Of course, you can’t be on your computer all the time, monitoring the moment everyone signs up for emails, so this is something that is best to automate. 

It allows you to set expectations and explain the value proposition of receiving your emails. Once someone has a good idea of what they’re going to receive from your emails, they’re more likely to open them and interact with your content. 

5. Automatic Replies to Customer Complaints

When someone has a complaint, they want to be assured you’re taking it seriously. The longer they wait for a response, the more their frustration builds. 

You can’t be monitoring your inbox 24/7, so it’s just not possible to be able to respond to each complaint right away. What you can do is set up an automated email that explains your complaint process and ensures you’re working on fixing the issue. 

This gives people confidence that you’re taking their complaints seriously, and they can expect a response in due course.

When to Not Use Automated Emails

We talk about personalization a lot in marketing, and it’s something that’s very important when it comes to automated emails. 

You can personalize automated emails, but there’s a limit to what you can do. With automated email marketing, you’re reliant on segments to personalize your communications. While putting someone in a segment means they’re not just any person, it still doesn’t mean they’re an individual. 

In many cases, segmenting email subscribers works because it’s an effective way of offering them personalized content. However, there are times when you need to treat people as an individual, and automated emails don’t work in these cases. 

Take our previous example about replying to customer complaints. The immediate response might be an automated email, but the follow-ups should be personal. 

This is something you need to keep in mind when setting up your automated email marketing. In what situations does it pay to address people as part of a segment, and when do you need to address them as an individual?

The farther people progress through your customer journey, the more likely it is they will need personalized communication.

Best Automated Email Marketing Tools

How can you get started with automated emails? The key is finding the email marketing tools that best fit your needs. 

There’s a lot of competition in this space, which is great for the consumer because it means there are some powerful tools available to us. 

Here are some of the best automated email marketing tools.

1. Drip

Drip gives you all the tools you need to run successful automated email marketing campaigns. It’s all about streamlining the process, and that’s exactly why people turn to automated emails in the first place. 

This is a straightforward tool to use, but it’s also powerful. Attract more customers with high-converting forms and schedule creative emails with ease.

2. Sendinblue 

Sendinblue combines email marketing services with SMS messages to offer a complete marketing tool.

It allows you to easily segment your audience, meaning you can work on personalizing your emails to your audience. When you create your content, the drag-and-drop feature makes it quick and easy to produce high-performing emails.

3. Mailshake 

Mailshake offers excellent automated email tools, especially if you’re doing cold outreach. With lots of plugins, it allows you to build out your mailing list, clean it to make sure you’ve got live emails, and schedule the perfect email sequence. It’s also got great social integrations!

The A/B testing and scheduling features are extremely easy to use, which means you can keep testing your emails until you find the right formula.

4. Mailchimp

Mailchimp might be the biggest name in email marketing, and for good reason: It offers some great tools. 

This is an all-in-one marketing platform that allows you to send drip emails, segment your audience, A/B test, and much more. 

5. Emma

Emma is a great tool for large businesses with big marketing teams. Its tools allow for easy collaboration between team members and make the process of automating emails much more seamless.

With lots of handy integrations and great personalization options, it’s a professional email marketing tool that can bring in serious results. 

Examples of Great Automated Email Marketing Campaigns

There are plenty of automated email marketing tools out there, but what should you be looking to achieve with your campaigns? 

Here are some great examples of automated email campaigns.

Automated Welcome Email

The welcome email is the first step in what will hopefully be a long and prosperous relationship. It’s all about introducing your brand, setting expectations, and showing the value of what the person has signed up for. 

Asana does this well in its welcome email. 

Examples of Great Automated Email Marketing Campaigns - Welcome email from Asana
Examples of Great Automated Email Marketing Campaigns - Welcome email from Asana

It focuses on the idea of teamwork, neatly showing you how its features can make your day that bit easier. It finishes with actionable tips, encouraging users to take the first step and engage with their software.

Abandoned Cart Automated Email

Your goal is clear with an abandoned cart email: You want people to come back and complete their purchase. 

Marketing isn’t always that straightforward, though, and you often have to put the customer’s goals before yours. This means finding ways to help the customer make a decision, not just telling them to buy. 

The first step is typically sending a reminder that they have left items in their cart. Casper does this well in the following email.

Examples of Great Automated Email Marketing Campaigns - Abandoned Cart Email from Casper

It’s not pushy but has tons of character and playfully engages with the customer, highlighting the items left in the cart.

You’ve now reminded the customer that they’ve got an open cart, so it’s up to them whether they return and make a purchase. Some will, but there will still be some people who aren’t convinced. 

The next email is an opportunity to overcome people’s doubts by answering their questions and showing how your product solves their pain points, as this email from Dollar Shave Club does.

Examples of Great Automated Email Marketing Campaigns - Abandoned Cart Email from Dollar Shave Club

Sometimes an abandoned cart is just an abandoned cart, and there’s no way to get people back. However, there’s one last tool you have at your disposal: People love a good promotion. Try sending one to see if you can tempt them with a discount.

Newsletters

There are lots of ways you can use your newsletters to engage with your audience. How you approach it depends on your goals. 

If you look at my email communications, you’ll see my goal is pretty simple. I want to give people quick access to information that will help them achieve their goals, and I want to bring them back to my site. 

Examples of Great Automated Email Marketing Campaigns - Newsletter email from Neil Patel

To do this, I use an engaging subject line and keep things extremely simple. 

Your email campaigns will differ based on what you’re trying to achieve, but the key is understanding what your target audience wants. 

Automated Email for Marketing Frequently Asked Questions

How do you automate marketing emails?

You can automate marketing emails using email marketing software, which allows you to set up email sequences and auto-responses to streamline your email marketing campaigns.

What is the best tool for automated email marketing?

There are lots of different automated email tools. Some of the best include Drip, Sendinblue, Mailshake, Mailchimp, and Emma.

What are the types of email automation?

You can automate almost any type of email. Automated email marketing works especially well for abandoned cart emails, welcome emails, lead nurturing, and newsletters.

How often should you send automated emails to your leads?

The timing of your emails is an important factor. You want to keep them updated without being overly pushy. A good way to find the right balance is through A/B testing.

Automated Email Marketing Conclusion

It’s just not feasible to create individualized emails for each person on your mailing list. Automated email marketing gives you the best of both worlds, allowing you to give your followers consistent updates while still offering a good level of personalization. 

This is important because email marketing is still a valuable digital marketing tool. It helps drive people to your website, nurture leads, and boost conversion rates, so it’s something every business should consider. 

Luckily, there are some great automated email tools out there, and with a bit of hard work, they should allow you to maximize your email marketing campaigns.

How have you used automated email marketing to help your business?

[…]

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Internet Marketing

How to Create Ultimate Guides to Drive Leads, Traffic, and Conversions

July 21, 2021 0

how to create ultimate guides to drive leads

Ultimate guides are everywhere. You’ve probably read your fair share, and maybe you’ve even written a couple.

They can be a great way to get traffic, build links, and increase your authority, but they’re far from easy to create. The issue most people run into is the sheer amount of content out there nowadays. How do you create an ultimate guide if there are already tons of posts on your chosen subject?

In this post, we’ll look at the steps to creating the ultimate guide on just about anything.

What Is an Ultimate Guide?

What turns a lengthy blog post into an ultimate guide? Well, there are a few things that almost every in-depth guide has in common:

  • It goes very deep into a pretty broad topic.
  • It contains several chapters that look at the topic from a variety of angles.
  • An industry expert or researcher writes it.

Apart from that, what you put in your ultimate guide and how you design it is up to you.

ultimate guide advanced SEO

Why You Should Create an Ultimate Guide

If you didn’t know how powerful ultimate guides are already, here’s why you should start creating them right now.

Rank for Many Keywords

The length, depth, and authority that go into ultimate guides make them a fantastic weapon in your SEO arsenal. The fact that they are so detailed means they should rank for a huge number of keywords. Including internal links to your other blog posts boosts their rankings, too.

Get Backlinks

A big, in-depth resource like an ultimate guide can be a fantastic source of links. Not only can you use it to go out there and request a backlink as part of your link-building process, but other sites naturally start linking to an authoritative resource, too. So much so that your ultimate guide can continue to attract links for years to come.

Build Your Authority

There are few pieces of marketing collateral better at positioning your brand as an authority in your industry than an ultimate guide. This is your opportunity to showcase how much you know about your subject to the world and go above and beyond what has previously been written about your topic.

How to Pick Topics for Your Ultimate Guide

Picking a topic can be a huge stumbling block for many aspiring writers. Don’t get bogged down overthinking it, though. Here’s how you can find the perfect topic quickly.

Choose a Topic You Know About

This first point is obvious, but it needs to be said. You need to know your topic inside and out if you want to write an excellent guide. That doesn’t mean you can’t use a freelance writer to help you out, but you should give them a thorough brief and create the outline of the guide yourself.

Choose a Topic With High Search Traffic

Not every guide needs to be written with the express purpose of ranking in Google, but it can seriously help drive traffic and generate customers. That’s why I recommend you enter your topic ideas into a tool like Ubersuggest to see the keyword volumes of the main topic and the volumes of every other related keyword.

Don’t just pick the topic that has the main keyword with the highest search volume, however. You may find another topic has so many more related keywords that it could actually generate more traffic overall.

Choose a Topic That’s Trending

Ultimate guides are successful when they’re written about trending topics. When people are excited about a topic, they want to consume all the information they can find about it. Your guide should be a part of that, too.

That’s not the only reason you want to focus on what’s trending, though. The newer your post is, the better it might do in search results if someone is searching by posts made within the last week, month, and so on.

How to Create an Ultimate Guide

With your topic picked, it’s time to get to work creating your guide. Here’s how I recommend you go about it.

1. Consume as Much Content as You Can

Even if you’re an expert in your field, you’ll still want to read blog posts on your topic before you start writing. Doing so will help you understand the level of content currently out there, the common threads writers pull, and the things you need to mention.

Pay attention to the results that Google serves up, too. You’ll find that specific formats are more popular than others, and you’ll want to try to mirror these when it comes to writing your content.

2. Identify What’s Missing

While you’re reading other people’s content, make a note of everything that’s missing from the posts. If you’re writing a how-to post, be sure to go through the steps yourself after reading posts by others.

Then, jot down things you notice during the process that others might have missed or not explained thoroughly. It also might help to sit down with someone who is unfamiliar with your topic and see what questions they come up with.

3. Do Research

You can write an ultimate guide off the back of your expertise alone—but you can make it stand head and shoulders above everyone else’s content if you conduct your research.

For some, this is a case of canvassing their colleagues and contacts for their opinion on a certain topic. Others might want to commit to more detailed research and partner with a market research company that’ll carry out a study on their behalf.

The more effort you put into the research, the more valuable and link-worthy your ultimate guide will become.

4. Put It All Together

To create your ultimate guide, simply combine the basics plus the additional details you found were missing from other posts and your research. This way, people coming across your guide as the first piece of content they have read about a topic will get all of the basic information, and people who have read many other guides will be wowed by all of the missing pieces that you included.

5. Promote, Promote, Promote

An ultimate guide is no good if no one reads it. Considering the amount of time and energy you have spent on your ultimate guide, you owe it to yourself and your readers to promote it well. Do so by:

  • Sharing it on all of your social networks: Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn are the best. Promote it on your personal and business accounts, if possible.
  • Sharing it in groups on social networks: LinkedIn, for example, has some great groups on particular topics. Facebook has some as well, although many are full of spammers who are just there for their promotions. This will expand your guide’s exposure from just your network to all of the members of the groups you select.
  • Emailing your list: If you have a mailing list, let them know about your latest and greatest piece of content.
  • Repurposing your content: If you can turn your ultimate guide into an infographic, video, slide presentation, or PDF document, you can spread it on even more networks.

4 Tips to Create an Awesome Ultimate Guide

If you want to take your ultimate guide to the next level, bear in mind these four tips when writing.

Write Clearly and Format Appropriately

You don’t have to be Hemingway to write a great ultimate guide, but take a lesson from Ernest regarding clarity. Short, clear, punchy sentences win out here, especially when writing thousands of words on your topic. Long, convoluted paragraphs may help you get your message across, but they’ll only cause the reader’s mind to wander.

Formatting will also help in this regard. Clearly labeled titles and subheadings will make your guide much more digestible. Short paragraphs will, too. Don’t forget that most of your audience will be reading your advice on a screen, so consider how they might skim it for the information they’re looking for.

Include Images and Screenshots

One thing I sometimes find missing from other ultimate guides is good screenshots. Take yours using your account of the topic as opposed to generic stock photos. This will make it easier for others to follow along and visualize the process.

Use Real-Life Examples

Once you have the basics and missing pieces down for your ultimate guide, look for some good examples of your tips in action. If you’re talking about creating great timeline cover photos, then include some examples from pages in different industries.

If you’re talking about using Pinterest to drive traffic, then link to top Pinterest users who are doing things right. Think about your target audience and find examples that they can easily relate to so they feel they must follow your advice to be successful.

Don’t Break Up Your Hard Work

There is a lot of advice out there suggesting you should take long posts and break them up into a series, so you can get people to come back to your website over and over again. However, I find that if someone hits a piece of content that says 101 Tips on ___, and the post only includes steps 1–20 with the promise of more to come, they move on to find everything they’re looking for elsewhere.

People want to consume information now, not wait for it. When they read the words ultimate guide, they’re going to expect to get everything in one chunk, so unless you are planning to write 5,000+ words on a topic, keep it in one piece.

Examples of Great Ultimate Guides

There are a lot of great ultimate guides out there, but here are some of my all-time favorites.

The Ultimate Guide to Startup Marketing

Examples of Great Content Guides - Neil Patel

If you’re looking to grow your startup, I’m pretty sure you’ll get a huge amount of value out of my ultimate guide on the topic.

How to Design a Logo: The Ultimate Guide

Examples of Great Content Guides - How to Design a Logo

With 12 chapters and virtually every angle covered, there’s no reason to read another guide before creating your logo.

The Ultimate Guide to Cart Abandonment

Examples of Great Content Guides - Cart Abandonment

If you’ve ever wondered why shoppers are leaving your website at checkout, this mammoth guide by VWO will answer all your questions.

The Ultimate Guide to Writing & Illustrating Your First Children’s Book

Examples of Great Content Guides - Guide to Writing Your First Children's Book

Ultimate guides don’t have to be about marketing, as this guide by Eevi Jones proves.

How to Pick a Career

Examples of Great Content Guides - How to Pick a Career

While Tim Urban hasn’t called this an ultimate guide, you’re unlikely to find a more thoughtful or detailed blog post on picking a career anywhere online.

Further Resources on Ultimate Guides

This blog post isn’t exhaustive by any means. If you want to dive deep into creating high-quality long-form content, then check out these five resources:

  1. How to Create an Ebook From Start to Finish by HubSpot
  2. The Ultimate Guide Template by Copyhackers
  3. Your Ultimate Guide on How to Write an Ultimate Guide (Infographic) by Express Writers
  4. The Ultimate Guide to Creating a True ‘Ultimate Guide’ by Search Engine Journal
  5. The Ultimate Guide To Content Promotion by Marketing Insider Group

How to Create Specs for an Ultimate Guide

You don’t have to write your ultimate guide yourself. If you’re hiring a freelance writer to write your guide for you, here’s how you can create a spec they can follow with ease.

  1. Give an overview.

    A top-level overview can help a writer quickly get to grips with the topic and goals of the ultimate guide.

  2. Create a clear structure.

    Take the initiative and write an outline that includes all of the major points you want the writer to talk about. This makes sure all of the gaps you identified in other pieces of content get covered.

  3. Include keyword research.

    If improved rankings are one of your main goals, then highlight the keywords you’re aiming to rank for.

  4. Note or record your expertise.

    Where appropriate, make notes for the writer to help guide them. Alternatively, you can record yourself talking about the topic.

  5. Provide additional resources.

    Highlight a handful of top-quality resources your writer can turn to for inspiration.

  6. Set a deadline

    Expect an ultimate guide to take a fair bit longer to write than a standard blog post.

Ultimate Guide Frequently Asked Questions

How long should my ultimate guide be?

There isn’t a defined length for an ultimate guide, but most are at least 3,000 words in length.

How do I distribute my ultimate guide to my target audience?

You can use social media and email to get your ultimate guide in front of your target audience.

Should I create more than one ultimate guide for my website?

Absolutely. Ultimate guides offer a lot of value in terms of SEO and building your authority, so you should write as many as you can.

At what part of the funnel are ultimate guides most useful?

Ultimate guides can be used at any part of your funnel, but they’ll be most useful towards the top. They are great at attracting users into your funnel and converting them to email subscribers.

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How to Create Ultimate Guides Conclusion

Ultimate guides are an incredibly valuable marketing resource. I’ve used them to generate huge levels of traffic, build my reputation as an authority in the industry, and improve my site’s SEO.

Follow the advice I’ve given above, and you’ll be on your way to achieving your content goals while sharing valuable insights about your chosen topic.

Have you created an ultimate guide on your website or blog? What other tips would you add to making your ultimate guide a success?

[…]