When it comes to marketing, every method is the same as long as it yields results, right? Actually, there’s a variety of ways to market and a difference depending on what techniques get used.
But what are the key differences between inbound vs outbound marketing? And is one better than the other when it comes to generating interest that converts to sales?
This ultimately all comes down to what you are trying to promote to an audience, how that market can take action, and also how you can measure your results as well.
As we all known, online advertising is much easier to set up and track, versus offline advertising. The good thing about ‘inbound’ and ‘outbound’ marketing methods, is that they can also be tracked in the same way.
Learn more about inbound vs outbound marketing, and see which techniques can bring the most success to your business.
Understanding Inbound Marketing
Inbound marketing techniques focus on giving customers (or potential customers) information and letting them decide how to execute a plan or suggestion. That means presenting consumers with information in the form of blog posts, social media and even a white paper or other free downloads that would inspire them to purchase something.
Inbound marketing ideas range from making use of your website to curating other viral content that folks take interest in. By combining your own ideas with that of other people, you’ll gain attention in what you have to offer.
It sometimes takes a while to build up viewers for this type of marketing. However, many people view this as working smarter, not harder, and believe that a focused effort on this type of marketing pays off in the long-term.
If you like the idea of appealing to folks but not doing a hard sell, inbound marketing is a form of promotion to consider for your business.
In the eyes of Google, it’s also important to make sure that your content not only delivers a message — but also that it’s one of the most in-depth and detailed articles out there. If you are going to focus your efforts on inbound marketing and writing content, put in the time and effort to make sure they each have at least 1,500+ words of content per article.
Know What Outbound Marketing Involves
In contrast to inbound marketing, outbound marketing involves traditional methods that have long been staples in the business world.
Some of these forms of marketing include:
- Cold calling
- Ads on TV, billboards etc
- Focuses on the product
Many people gravitate toward this type of marketing simply because it’s what they’re used to. The idea of approaching customers and trying to make a sale with folks who might not necessarily express interest is not a concern for those who use outbound marketing techniques.
Outbound marketing has a place in today’s world of promotion. For example, it can prove useful for branding and making a company’s name known but isn’t always the best option when it comes to gaining long-term customers.
You can read more now about the differences between inbound marketing vs outbound marketing. Knowing how to apply marketing to your company’s needs makes a difference in how well it can work.
What Today’s Consumers Want
Many consumers today are wise when it comes to marketing and what someone’s selling. They fully expect to get upsold and asked to buy the most expensive option on the market.
With that in mind, it’s better to appeal to an individual’s intellect before anything else.
One of the best ways to do this (and encourage sales in the process) is through content creation. If your company doesn’t already have a blog and make use of search engine optimization with content, you’re missing out.
Blogging and SEO go hand-in-hand with attracting the right kinds of consumers who actively seek your products and want to purchase from you. Since more consumers are on social media now more than ever, posting and discussing information on there does wonders for increasing company growth.
Another factor to consider is how well cold calling works when most people don’t want to pick up their phones anymore. Many people screen calls with caller ID or even block unknown numbers from calling.
You’re likely to get ahead more using techniques that get your product and services in front of folks, but don’t force them to read more if they’re not interested. If you’re curious about how blogging can help your business, check out a previous post on this here.
The Key Differences Between Inbound vs Outbound Marketing
Now that we’ve discussed the two types of marketing, what are the key differences between the two?
In general, inbound marketing drives the customer to you. You can do this through written content on your blog or website, social media outreach, and even engaging folks on a forum or other public form of communication.
While you might not make a sale right away, you’re developing a relationship with folks interested in what you have to offer. That is considered more important when it comes to marketing than trying to make a quick one-time sale.
In contrast, outbound marketing generally means you go to the customer. You’ll do this by cold calling, going on the radio or making a TV commercial, and even engaging in print advertisements.
Many of your outbound marketing methods are old-fashioned and direct. The focus is on the product and what it does, rather than the individual and what they need. If you’re concerned about approaching people in a laid-back fashion, this isn’t the method you’d use.
Can You Do Both?
Now that you know the difference between the two marketing methods, you’re likely asking yourself, “is it possible to do both?” The answer is yes.
Use outbound marketing sparingly, and to help establish your company’s brand. This allows people to know what you’re about and to get your name out there.
When you want to cultivate meaningful connections and show how your products or services can change someone’s life, use inbound marketing. This allows people to learn more about your product and how you can help them succeed.
There’s no reason not to do both. It just depends on your company and how you’d like to reach people and have them remember you.
Now that you know the differences between inbound vs outbound marketing, you can see how to apply them to your business for success. Choosing to blog or utilize social media instead of cold calling can help push your business to new heights as you reach a large number of people.
Does your company have a social media plan? If not, check out our blog post on the importance of social media marketing, and see how having one can grow your business even more.
Developer To-Do List: The 8 Best Programming Languages to Learn in 2019
What are the best programming languages you need to know in 2019?
People who are new to coding will find that there are a ton of programming languages to learn. Of course, you want to start with the easiest programming language.
However, at the same time, it’s important to realize that you don’t need to code in order to have a website or blog. WordPress has made the process of creating a site or making a blog extremely easy — with little-to-no coding or design skills ever required.
Surprisingly, there isn’t an easy answer to find the best programming language to learn. This article will break down all of the basic programming languages.
Which one is the easiest programming language? Read on to find out which programming language you should start with.
Best Programming Languages to Learn
In order to decide which programming languages to learn, you should have an idea as to why you want to learn to code.
Are you starting a new affiliate marketing business? Maybe you want to jump to a more lucrative career. Programmers often start at six-figures, making it one of the more lucrative jobs.
Some programming languages are great if you’re planning to create an app, while others are great for building a website. The best programming language to learn is the one that you can grasp easily and apply in your work right away.
If you want to start with an easy and versatile programming language, start with Python. It is a very popular language and would be the best programming language to learn for almost any application.
Companies are migrating to Python to handle data management to building web applications.
3. Ruby on Rails
Developers love Ruby on Rails and many consider this the best programming language to learn. It’s used quite a bit in website development, and you’ll see it on the backend of sites like Air BnB and Hulu.
The reason why developers love it so much is because it’s intuitive and fun. Many people will tell you to learn this language first.
Facebook, WordPress, and Yahoo! Are run on PHP. If you’re looking to develop WordPress websites, PHP is the language to learn.
It’s not intimidating for people just starting out to code to learn PHP. If your dream is to make money through affiliate marketing sites, then this language would be a good one to learn.
This is a programming language that’s been around forever. It’s been around for so long, it’s considered to be a language that’s obsolete.
While it is a legacy programming language, it’s still very useful. It’s alive and well in assisting engineers to solve complex mathematical equations in an instant.
It’s also used to develop games, and system software. As you can see, this programing language is alive and well.
In the corporate world, you’ll see a lot of companies that use Microsoft’s .NET framework. Pronounced C-Sharp, this language is meant to make development easier to learn than other programming languages from Microsoft.
If you want to develop games, you’re definitely going to need to know both C++ and C#.
What does SQL stand for? Structured Query Language. What does that mean? It’s a language that’s used to extract, update, and delete information in databases.
While some people view SQL as an old and cumbersome way to communicate with databases, but it’s the best way there is.
You’ll see SQL used in WordPress sites and projects that contain large databases.
Swift is one of those programming languages that not many people know. If you plan on developing an app, you’ll want to be familiar with it. This is the programming language that’s used to drive iOS apps.
If you want to fast track your learning, this is a great language to know. Think of this way, there are millions of iOS devices out there, from phones to watches. This presents a great opportunity for you to get your business out to a larger audience or join a company that develops apps.
How to Learn to Code
You know which programming languages you want to learn. How should you go about learning? There are many options to learn to code. The most common ways to learn is to go to school for a degree, programming boot camps, and teaching yourself.
No matter where you start, you should read a few books about the history of computer programming. This will give you a background on the various programming languages and how they evolved. One such book is “The Art of Computer Programming,” which by many is a book that has shaped computer science.
There are also algorithms in there that are tied to Babylonian tablets from 3000 years ago.
If you want to learn Python, you can learn with a few good books and videos that are available online. There are also courses where you can learn Python and data science, which can help you take your skills to another level.
There are blogs, books, course, and more that you can use to learn just about any programming language. Most programmers are self-taught, and it is possible that you can do the same.
If you’re serious about learning to code, you’ll need to be disciplined about learning.
The best thing you can do is to set up a schedule to study your chosen programming language.
Start Your Programming Adventure
In 2019, you want to have the best opportunities in front of you. Whether you’re building a business or want to give your career a fresh boost, programming languages are great to know.
You can create customizations on your websites, build apps, or do anything your imagination wants.
Want to know more? Check out this article on building a million dollar website.
7 Tips to Boost Email Subscribers and Grow Your List in 2019
Did you spend most of this year struggling to figure out how to grow your email list? If you did, don’t worry you’re not alone. Many small businesses and new bloggers can’t quite discover the secret sauce that many other websites use to grow their email list from nothing into hundreds of thousands of subscribers.
But fear not, there are some easy to implement tips and tricks that will help you build an email list full of loyal fans who will hang on your every word, become brand ambassadors for your business, and buy your products or services again and again.
Get ready to ring in the new year with a ton of new subscribers, check out these seven tips to boost email subscribers in 2019.
1. Offer a Content Upgrade
Everyone loves getting a free gift, so use that to your advantage when growing your email list. Offering a freebie or content upgrade to your website visitors in exchange for their email address is one of the easiest ways to get more subscribers in 2019. People won’t hesitate to join your email list when you’re offering extra content that’s relevant to your niche.
You can use a free tool like Canva to easily create PDF guides, checklists, worksheets, calendars, templates, and more. One great tip is to turn your most popular existing blog post into a content upgrade. It will be less work for you to put together because you’re not coming up with new ideas from scratch and you know it will perform well.
2. Add an Opt-In at End of Articles
When a visitor has just finished reading one of your useful blog posts they’re fully engaged and in the mood to subscribe, so give them the opportunity to do so by adding an opt-in at the end of your articles. You already know they’re loving your content because they’re reading it, which makes it the perfect moment to turn them from reader to subscriber.
Like in the example below, you can let readers know that if they enjoyed the article they just read, they can get more of the same great content by signing up for your email list.
You can easily create a sleek looking opt-in that will grab the attention of users and convince them to sign up.
3. Create an Exit-Intent Popup.
Another amazing way to catch the attention of website visitors and encourage them to become subscribers is to use an exit-intent popup. Many people will come across a great article on your website, read it, and never return again. In fact, over 70 percent of people who leave your website will never return. So in order to convert abandoning site visitors into subscribers, you need to add an exit-intent popup to your site.
You can build a stunning exit-intent popup in minutes using a tool like OptinMonster. An exit-intent message works like this: When a user is on your site, the exit-intent technology tracks when they’re about to leave and then displays a targeted message to them at exactly the right time. So before you’ve lost a visitor forever, you can turn them into a subscriber.
4. Promote Your List on Social Media
You can’t expect to grow your email list if you don’t promote it. That’s why it’s important to promote your email list not just on your own website but on social media too. There are a number of ways to promote your email list on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn etc., including:
- Sharing your blog posts on social media and include hashtags related to your niche
- Adding a link to your profile bio
- Pinning your email list opt-in to the top of your profile
- Join Facebook groups relating to your niche
- Make connections and interact with people in comment sections
Promoting your email list on social media will widen your reach; you’ll introduce your blog and your email list to online users who have never heard of or visited your website before.
5. Add a Contact Form to Your Site
If you’re a blogger you might think that having a contact form on your website isn’t necessary for you, but it is. Your website visitors need an easy way to contact you if they have any questions or if they just have something to say, plus you can use a contact form to grow your email list. You can create a contact form with a field for an email address that users are required to fill out before they can submit their message. So even visitors who ignored your email list opt-ins on your website will be able to be converted with a contact form.
Adding a contact form to your website isn’t difficult, it’s actually quite easy with a tool like WPForms. With their drag and drop builder you’ll be able to create a contact form in minutes that will capture all of the information you need. They also have some other cool features like a Form Abandonment Tool that will capture a users info even if they don’t submit the form. By adding a contact form to your site, you’ll have the opportunity to connect with your website visitors and turn them into email subscribers.
6. Display Testimonials
It’s natural for humans to want to be a part of something awesome. For instance, if you drive by a restaurant and see a line up down the street, you’ll want to eat there too. If that many people think it’s great, it probably is. You can create the same effect with your email list by displaying testimonials. Showing social proof is an effective way to grow your email list. People will take notice of all of the subscribers singing your praises and want to become a part of the club too.
So, ask some of your biggest fans to write a review or testimonial you can showcase on your website. You could also retweet users who are talking about you and sharing your content on social media. Seeing social proof helps users build trust with your brand and more trust means more email subscribers for you.
7. Redirect Commenters
The people who are commenting on your blog are the perfect people to encourage to become subscribers. If they’re commenting on your articles, you already know they’re interested in what you have to say and right after they’ve spent time sharing their thoughts with you is the most opportune time to convert them into email subscribers. So to get a boost in your email list, redirect users who are commenting on your blog.
A great tool for this is Yoast Comment Hacks. With this plugin, after a user has commented on your blog for the first time, they’ll be redirected to a “thank you” page that encourages them to sign up for your email list. An engaged user who’s commenting on your blog posts is one that will likely take you up on your offer and subscribe.
Over to You
With these actionable tips you’ll be able to take your email list from zero to hero in the new year. But don’t wait until 2019 to get the ball rolling. Start implementing these tips now so that by January 1st you won’t only be celebrating the New Year, but you’ll be celebrating the huge growth of your email list.
Thwart the Thieves: How to Protect Your Company Data from Hackers
Running an online business where you are dealing with customer data and private information can be scary. It doesn’t matter if you are a sole affiliate marketer or a huge 500+ person company, a data hack or leak can happen at any time. Even scarier than the initial leak itself, is that if hackers find a way to access private company data, they may be able to bring down your business. If you’re worried about this potential threat, you might want to learn how you can protect yourself.
Luckily, there are specific tactics you can put into place to shield your company data from hackers.
Keep reading and you’ll learn what it takes to keep your data safe. When you’re done, you’ll understand how you can lower the odds of a hacker stealing precious company data.
Enable 2-Factor Authentication
2-Factor authentication means that a password is not the only thing a person needs to access a certain ‘account.’
This is helpful because if someone accidentally exposes their password, their data is still going to be safe.
Most of the time, 2-factor authentication means you need an authentication code whenever you want to login to a specific account. Or, you’ll need to login to an app, that is constantly generating new authentication codes.
When you sign up to something like this, you’re also given some ‘backup codes.’ These codes are ‘hard-copy’ codes you can use should you lose your phone. You can write down these codes on a piece of paper and put that paper somewhere safe. You’ll then have a way to login to your account even if you don’t have your phone nearby.
There’s also the option of using a ‘key.’
This method is growing in popularity because it’s a lot more secure than using a message sent to your phone. With this option, you buy a special USB key. You then need to insert the key into your computer before you can log in to your account.
If you want to keep things as secure as possible, security keys can be the best option. Just make sure you buy your keys from a reputable source.
Be sure to enable 2-factor authentication for all your digital business systems.
Teach Employees How to Keep Data Safe
Data breaches often happen due to human error. If you can train your staff on potential scenarios that might lead to a data breach, you can reduce the odds of an issue related to human error.
One thing you need to teach employees is the importance of verifying URLs before they enter information.
For instance, there are a lot of hackers that will use a method which involves creating a duplicate web page. When people reach this duplicate webpage, they’ll think it’s the original version. Following this, they’ll enter in their login information. The hacker will then have this login information and they can then use it to access your data.
It’s worth noting that using methods like 2-factor authentication can help reduce the odds of this becoming an issue. After all, even if someone has access to the password, they’ll still need the authentication code/security key to gain access to your systems.
Another thing you should teach employees is to be wary of how they carry/transport data.
You should also let them know that they’re not allowed to store data on their USB sticks. USB sticks are convenient, but they’re also an easy way to lose company data.
The alternative is to store everything on a cloud server. This will help prevent a scenario, wherein an employee accidentally leaves their USB lying around and someone then steals You should also tell employees that they should always make sure there is a password on their computer.
Make Use of Business Specific Cloud Services
If you’re using a cloud service, use one that’s designed specifically for business. Such a service can often provide a lot more security, than a normal cloud offering.
You’ll find certain options provide you with a lot of insight into who has access to certain files and folders. Using the administrator login, you can control who has access.
This is especially helpful if someone loses their laptop.
You can just log in to the dashboard and make it so that the computer in question no longer has access to the files. If someone steals the laptop, they’ll be unable to access the data and exploit it. If you’d like to know how access rights work, check out this post for more info.
Such services also provide you with logs.
This can be helpful if you’re trying to spot unusual data access patterns. If you notice a login from an unusual location, it could be the sign of someone trying to hack your system. You can shut down this login as soon as you’re aware of it.
Hire People to Check Your Systems
There’s also the option of hiring people known as ‘white hat’ hackers. Such individuals will look for ways to hack your systems and gain access to your data. These people can let you know what vulnerabilities exist in your system and how you should fix such issues.
According to HeimdalSecurity, the following cyber attacks and threats are the biggest risks to data companies of all sizes:
- Getting their info compromised in massive data leaks
- Smartphones shipping with malware and malicious apps
- Ransomware attacks on cloud services
- Cryptojacking that affects their hardware
- Financial losses and data compromise due to cryptocurrency trading
- Scams with advanced social engineering tactics
- IoT devices like smart locks or smart assistants being hacked
This preemptive approach gives you the chance to address issues before they’re exploited in a way that can damage your business. Good white hat hackers can be expensive. But you need to compare this cost to what you might expect you lose if someone hacks your company data.
Do You Know How to Protect Company Data?
There’s really no way to escape the fact that your company will have sensitive data stored on electronic devices. This can be a problem because people who are looking to exploit your data can hack these devices.
In this post, we’ve reviewed how you can protect your company data from hackers. You need to focus on training your employees so that the odds of human error are low. You also want to make use of things like 2-factor authentication.
If you want to keep your data really secure, consider hiring some white hat hackers. They’ll be able to take a look at your setup and can provide qualified advice on how you can make things better.
No matter what type of business or brand you are running online, it’s extremely important to protect your own, and your customer data. This is also true for any bloggers and affiliate marketers that might want to further protect their ad campaigns, company marketing plans, and business models.
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