Best Blogging Tips: The 6 Tools That Will Cut Your Work in Half

Guest post by Ivana Taylor

You’ve got a business to run, customers and clients to serve, oh, and then there’s your blog!  Starting a blog is a HUGE responsibility to your business and your readers.  It requires persistence and consistency and when it’s just your staff of “me, myself and I”, this can become truly overwhelming.

Today, I’m going to share the blogging tools I use that make my budget brand look big and save me at least two hours a day in busy work. 

1. TweakYourBiz Headline and Title Generator

You need a headline and you’ve been trolling the web, news feeds and swipe files – still no great headline.  Ditch those and try the TweakYourBiz Headline Generator.

Enter your phrase, click on submit and out will pop HUNDREDS of proven, tested and creative headlines that will not only inspire you, but generate sticky traffic and crazy social sharing!

2. Optimize Press 2.0

DIYMarketers runs on Optimize Press 2.  This was the best investment I’ve made in my site in YEARS!  You can use it as a plugin to create landing pages, opt-in forms and even membership downloads for training that you offer for your community.  You can run it as a theme (like I do) or you can get the plugin to use with your existing blogging platform.

I’m recommending it as a blogging tool because of one awesome little feature – the ability to insert opt-in forms ANYWHERE inside your blog post.

Blogging gurus recommend relevant downloads and opt-ins that seem close to your blog post and that offer a download or offer that amplifies your existing post and I’ve found this to be the best-value option.  Sure you can use HubSpot and pay about $800 per month, or you can pay for each plugin, but this is already included in your single price for Optimize Press.

Here’s what it looks like in action:

 

I inserted this opt-in form inside of an article about how marketing and gardening teach similar lessons.  Then I made the offer to receive a free guide that helps readers “prune” the overwhelm out of their marketing.

This took as long to insert as an image – and has doubled my opt-in rate.

 3. MyCurator Content Plugin

Since I’m always on the lookout for low-budget tools, tips and strategies, I decided that I wanted to use a “curation tool” to help me leverage the time I spend researching online.  This one does the trick like a dream!

 

This is a FREE plugin (up to a point) and if you make it a larger part of your blogging strategy, the professional version goes for $10 per month and the business version is $30.  I’m still using the free version and would recommend you start there.

MyCurator helps you grab content from the web and easily whip it into an engaging blog post.  You can do this manually and this is fantastic.

Here’s an example of a post I did that way: How to Track and Measure the Success of Your Social Media Campaign.

I grabbed the post and wrote my own intro, then simply selected the key points from the original article and then sent the reader to the original post.

You can also automate MyCurator to automatically find you relevant posts based on criteria that you set up.  That means it’s ALWAYS running in the background collecting posts.  All you have to do is go into the dashboard and select the ones you want to customize and post.

And get this – it LEARNS.  The more you use it, the smarter it gets and the more relevant posts that it delivers daily.

This is a fantastic way to round out your blog AND support influential bloggers and their content.  It’s like getting a guest post – without getting a guest post.

4. SocialOomph for social media automation

This is my secret weapon against overwhelm.  It’s not free, It’s about $27 per quarter, but it’s like having a social media manager working full-time.

SocialOomph gives you the ability to BOTH schedule and automate your social media posts across multiple platforms.

One of my absolute favorite features is their ability to create Queues and then to bulk upload posts to those Queues.

Think of Queues as “categories” or “campaigns” for example here is a snapshot of the different queues that I have:

Notice I have #FF (Follow Friday for Twitter) and then I have “Holiday Quotes” as well as queues for specific time-sensitive events.  My staff and I research who to follow, create tweets and shout outs and upload them here.  When we find great quotes, we upload them and when we run specific events and promotions, we can upload the promotional messages to these queues.

SocialOomph is NOT a replacement for your engaging in social media, but it’s a fantastic way to get conversations started, help promote your partners and free yourself from the shackles of social media platforms that you want to take part in, but just don’t have a lot of time for.

5. Use BuzzSumo to discover influencers and viral content

Are you looking for a blog topic or influencer to build a relationship with?  BuzzSumo Is your tool. 

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This tool has received a lot of “buzz” , and for good reason.  It’s free.  It’s easy to use and after spending just a few minutes playing with this tool will help you not only uncover the blog topics that your audience wants to read more about, you might event build some great relationships with influencers.

6. Use Nimble to nurture profitable relationships

Are you doing most of your networking online?  How many times have you “met” someone online and then lost the conversation?  If you’ve experienced either of these circumstances, then you really need to check out Nimble.

Nimble is a “social CRM” which means that it’s function is to help you move relationships that started online into profitable relationships.

Nimble saves you time and money by eliminating the need to enter contacts into the system.  Nimble is populated by your existing contact, and by simply right-clicking on people you find online.  Nimble magically grabs their social streams and online conversations and then allows you to insert these conversations into a sales pipeline so that you can focus on turning these prospects into customers.

Set goals first

If you’re like me, you’ve probably been reading and clicking over to these tools and thinking “WOW!  That’s cool, I’m going to use this!”  But hold on a minute!  Don’t just dive into a tool without being clear on what you’re trying to do.  Start with that, then pick the tool that works best for you.

These best blogging tools will help you save time, money and aggravation!

Happy blogging!

Ivana Taylor is the publisher of DIYMarketers.com – an online marketing publication that provides marketing advice and short cuts for CEOs with no marketing department. She is the DIY Marketing expert and book editor for Small Business Trends and a contributing author to AMEX Open Forum. Her strategic consulting firm, Third Force  specializes in helping companies find their best customers and be the one they choose – regardless of price. Ivana is the co-author of Excel for Marketing Managers.  You can find her on Twitter as @DIYMarketers and @StrategyStew

 

6 Effective Conversion Tweaks To Skyrocket Your Email List

A guest post by my colleague, Adam Connell.

You’ve got a blog and you’ve heard about how important growing your email list is.

You’ve seen others grow their subscribers to a huge number and you want to do the same.

The ugly truth is that it takes time and most people give up before they get close or get chance to figure out what does work. Don’t be that person.

I was almost that person but I held out a little longer and found what tactics worked.

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Blog Name Ideas: Why Is Creating Headlines So Darn Hard?

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On one hand, there are tons of writing principles you can use to catch attention, to get people to read, to build connection and to stand out.

On the other hand, the great blog names subject lines you write ultimately have to come from you. They have to stand out because they’re an expression of you and your brand.

The best way to learn how to write a good title for a blog post isn’t to copy other people’s titles. Instead, use other people’s creative blog name titles to learn what works. Then use those same principles to help guide you in writing your own titles.

With that in mind, here are ten blog subject line tips, along with examples to illustrate them.

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  Adam Connell, Founder of Blogging Wizard

Leverage the influencers of others in your niche: there are bloggers in your niche that have direct influence over your target audience. You can leverage that influence to grow your own blog but the great thing is that this all starts with helping.

Focus on developing relationships with key bloggers; engage with them via social media, promote their content, write an awesome guest post for them, link out to it and most importantly – let them know about it.

When you publish a blog post that says awesome stuff about someone, they will be more inclined to share it because it’s a validation of their authority.

 Lynn Terry, Professional Blogger at ClickNewz!

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If you have an audience, you can monetize it – period.

Repeat visitors (a readership) are most valuable, so focus on list building and social media – and making strong connections through conversations and responses!

 

[Read more...]