Posted by Jason Ciment Monday, 03.03.2014 12:23pm Comment

Communications Strategy for Customer Engagement

Websites need to talk to their customers — more often and more intelligently.

More often because you don't want them to forget about you as they are deluged with offers from other sources.

More intelligently because you need to figure out a way to stand apart from a barrage of other communications.

If you want someone to "see your message" and act on it, you may have to send it up to 29 times. It's called the Rule of 29. The number of messages isn't important here. Rather, it's the idea of meaningful repetition.

The Rule of 29 applies to someone who opts in to receive messages. juwt like a good shampoo, you need to Rinse and Repeat. The key is to reinforce your message to your clientbase. Guide them down the path you want them to follow. Lead them to the sale.

The best way to learn is often by trial and error. Until you get your hands dirty and start "testing" your abilities, it's a long-distance relationship — and we know how unsatisfying long-distance love can be. Case studies are the second-best way to learn (at least, that's what they told us in law school). So, I submit for your review a case study and primer on client communications developed at my first company by its first communications director, Vanessa.

Her first step was to develop a format that would be consistent in all communications to customers.

Here's what we've adopted when we launched this previously.

  • New products being offered and which products were no longer going to be available. This tells customers our catalog is constantly changing and enables them to make certain their needs are in sync with ours.
  • Cut-and-paste featured offer. This offer is usually for the most popular or most profitable product.
  • Category killers. We offer 12 product categories. It's difficult to predict which categories will interest individual affiliates. So, we provide links to specially designed pages devoted to each category.
  • A feedback link. This link requests input from customers on how we can improve our program. We include a quote or testimonial from a customer to make it seem real and participatory. As important as it is to enage customers, you need to listen, too. Affiliates and your customers are the best barometers for how your business can be improved.
  • A viral tell-a-friend link. This link forwards the newsletter, or portions of it, to people who may become new customers.
  • A time-sensitive incentive. The incentive can stand alone or be applied to any of the above items. An extra commission or freebie will incentivize customers to take advantage of particular offers or provide feedback. Customers love giveaways, and salespeople (i.e., affiliates) love them even more. They'll demonstrate that love right into your bank account. Any incentive should be for a limited time, or human nature will take over and they won't act.

Keep one thing in mind before you set a communications strategy: spoon feeding. Assume your customers just woke up and don't have a clue how to proceed.

Make your call to action simple and easy to implement. I try to lay out my propositions step by step in this column. Do the same for your customers. If you don't want to use valuable space in an email message, put the longer, more detailed step-by-step scenario on a Web page and link to it from the newsletter. Your customers will appreciate the effort you've made to show them how it should be done.

If you're interested in a 12-month communications plan or tactics that have worked for other companies, drop me a line. If you have comments on the above, which, as with anything else on the Web, is a work in progress, please share them, and I will update the program in a future article.

Posted by Jason Ciment Thursday, 02.20.2014 5:19am Comment

Search Engine Optimization and Marketing Services

Search Engine Optimization

Having top search engine listings is important for any company who sells a product or service that people search for online.

A first page search engine listing will position your website to attract targeted visitors who you can covert to leads and sales!

It's fair to say that if you fail to achieve website listings in the first 20 positions on the major search engines, you will not see impressive results for your lead generation efforts.

This is why companies with websites spend considerable marketing dollars on promoting their websites with Search Engine Optimization and Pay-per-Click advertising campaigns.

In my capacity as co-founder of LADezign I have spent six years sharing tactics and strategies that create more sales for businesses. My partner Michael and I with our team have spent more hours than we can keep track of in perfecting our techniques to drive more traffic through broader and more comprehensive and ultimately higher search engine rankings.

And because funding these campaigns is a moving target, our search engine optimization services can be modifed to support the right service for every reasonable budget.

Are you currently paying for search engine rankings? It pays to do a review and see how you are really doing. Don't just pay the monthly retainer. Make sure you have an expert review your results at least twice per year.

Consider selfishly that our search engine optimization services may actually increase traffic and cut down on your website promotion cost at the same time!

Here are services you can get help with

  • Natural Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
  • Paid Inclusion (PPC) Bid Management & Tracking
  • Paid Search
  • Shopping Site Promotions

Posted by Jason Ciment Monday, 02.10.2014 5:15am Comment

Website Design Services Overview

Is your website hitting the mark?
Are visitors connecting with your goals?
Bottom line: Are you converting visits into leads or sales?

How your website looks and reads is a leading indicator of how well it will perform to drive visitors through your sales funnel. Just like the old adage you are how you look, the same can be said about a high performance website.

I've been selling things online since 1997. I've written for the main marketing journals like SearchEngineLand and ClickZ. I can name drop with the best of them. But really who gives a hoot about things I've done when what really matters is what can be done for you going forward.

This website is all about your future and your sustainability. If you want to survive you need more than a me too website. You don't need to be ahead of the curve or cutting edge. Instead you just need to abide by 3 time-tested, proven principles that come right out of debate team:

Tell 'em what you do.
Do it.
Then, tell them that you did it.

This is the formula.

I'm going to save you money on your car insurance.
Here's how I am going to do it.
Here's how i did it for Mr "X" just last week.

If you are believable, you will be believed.

All you need is to tell your story with good copy, strong headlines, nice graphics and an overall intuitive design and you will close more business.

it's really that simple.

if you want to take the dramatic first step and achieve the growth you are pining for then just drop me a line and let's talk = for real.

I am not going to distract you will sales copy about the highest quality website design at affordable prices because you do't need affordable. You need to win. If it costs more to be victorious then make the wager and invest in yourself to be a leader not a follower.

If you are starting a new project from scratch or having a current website re-designed, I will guide you and direct you to get the job done.

Think of my as your website architect. I have the information and development resources here to help you organize what you might need. I will be glad to design and/or oversee a complete strategy for the entire site design and development process.

Just to recap:

Still wondering what makes for a terrific Website?

Attractive graphics are appealing but great Web sites are designed at the intersection of your brand message, what your customers are trying to accomplish and what you want them to do. Based on this information and analyzing these factors, the right overall design and technologies can be created and implemented.

With every project, I will help you integrate a balanced blend of your customers' needs with your business requirements, while at the same time providing a measurable return on investment and encompassing your interactive goals. Now if you understand what i Just wrote you can be obliged to tell me because I don't even understand it.

Let's try again in plain english:

If you want a website that will drive dollars to your bottom line, then let's talk.
If you just want a second opinion on your website project, then let's talk.
If you aren't sure what you want but you know you need to make a change, then let's talk.

Anyone else with a different agenda? let's not talk. You are probably not the right fit for my website services.

Posted by Jason Ciment Saturday, 01.25.2014 12:23pm Comment

Ecommerce Shopping Cart Software Solutions

If you are selling online then your success quite often is tangible connected to the quality,functionality and flexibility of your eCommerce shopping cart enabled web software platform.

Selling online is a tricky thing.

As the world continues its transformation into the Google economy, any competitor is often just a click away from your website.

The challenge of making the sale often comes down to engaging your customer not only with a competitive price but also with a user-friendly and content compelling (what some might term "Persuasive") web site experience.

As the selling experience proceeds to be commoditized – especially with the adoption of the very very boring responsive and very impersonal websites – the challenge to differentiate is even more complicated.

Your online ecommerce success boils down to 3 things:
- Good Copywriting,
- Fast Load Times
- Smooth User-Interface

I have spent years on the inside working on upgrade after upgrade with the developers of the Adrecom enterprise eCMS system, one of the original ecommerce shopping cart platforms that evolved from the Webcart platform.

The Adrecom developers have taken the Best Practices from other web site platforms and integrated them into one comprehensive web site solution that is designed for one purpose in mind – make you money from online sales.

If you want to tour the Adrecom platform, visit

Posted by Jason Ciment Friday, 01.10.2014 12:22pm Comment

Is Your Website Trustworthy?

Does giving away something free still work to induce people to give you their contact details?

In this age of the "what's in it for me" society I advocate that it still can work.

Once you hhave initiated the give-to-get strategy, you still face a new challenge:

Who are you to deserve their ongoing attention — not to mention their money?

Web site owners are often slaves to their own need for credibility.

Ask yourself, is your web site trustworthy? 

Do you have years of experience in your industry? Do you have clients that will go out on a limb and vouch for your pathetically trite yet valid "total commitment to customer service"? Exclusively Web-based businesses, because they lack the brick-and-mortar reputation their competitors may enjoy, have an even tougher uphill battle to satisfy new users.

Here are three techniques to encourage visitors to stay on your site and enjoy a cup of virtual tea and perhaps even spend some money or share in some sage advice before leaving.

1. Make your site easy to use and intuitive in order to be perceived as credible and desirable,

Look up Bryan Eisenberg online and search for anything he writes. His books and articles have done loads for me personally over the years. You can even stop reading this article until you absorb his simple building blocks for Web site usability.

2. Be relevant, yet independent.

In this shift from just "giving" to "giving and satisfying", you can greet them with symbols of unbeatable convenience and reliability.

The first symbol can be a logo of an independent and reliable verification service such as Yelp. This puts the user one mouse click away from a variety of comments and ratings about your site. A second symbol might be a shopping verification logo of an organization such as the BBB (Better Business Bureau) OnLine. These two emblems reinforce the idea that your business may develop a relationship which is credible and capable of backing up its integrity.

3. Make visitors feel special.

People want relationships. Some want a really quick experience with no follow up — get in and get out. Others may want the cushy feeling.

Regardless of the nature of the relationship that will develop between Web site owner and Web site user, your customers want to know that you care and that you will make yourself available to provide help.

This is really the easiest technique and can be addressed by focusing on one mantra — "no time, no time, no time." No time is what everyone has tons of. Therefore, since people have no time, don't make them waste time hunting for answers.

- Make your frequently asked questions (FAQ) section obvious.
- Make your phone number bold and beautiful.
- Make whatever experience you provide online really fast and easy so that your users leave happy.

I call this the "FEH Principle," from an old Yiddish word that I'll more properly describe one day.

To recap, running a successful credibility strategy requires more than just ongoing communications. It requires that your Web site experience be enjoyable to each and every customer. To make sure that your customers keep sending you targeted traffic, just obey the FEH Principle. Because by doing so, the "who are you" question will answer itself: "I am Web site, hear me roar."  


Posted by Jason Ciment Wednesday, 12.25.2013 12:20pm Comment

Launch Your Web Site

How do you launch a new Web site in a highly competitive marketplace?

Here's a step-by-step methodology to follow — even in an environment with many established players.

1. Identify keywords. Use deductive reasoning and some keyword matching software — similar to how NameBoy comes up with domain name matches. For example, in the nutrition space you might find phrases like "nutrition products," "health food," "protein drinks," and "keeping fit" as highly relevant terms that people would type into search engines to locate relevant nutrition product sites.

2. Create personalized pages for each keyword set. Design each page with slightly different content and target it to a specific demographic audience. For example, on the two pages designed around the keywords "health food," the content on one page is targeted at health food store owners and the content on the second is uniquely targeted toward health food lovers.

3. Get links from other sites that offer content or commerce specifically relevant to your products and services.

4. Link to sites as well that are highly authorative like Wikipedia. For example, on a page targeted at store owners, he added links to other health food stores online (mostly noncompetitive) so that his buyers would think of his nutrition site as more than just an e-commerce store.

5. Ask for reseller relationships. Personally contact (not email) site owners to discuss more intricate affiliate relationships. Sometimes, instead of offering standard commissions make special deals.

6. Focus on quality — not quantity. 10 targeted super affiliates could bring you much more business than 1,000 randomly acquired resellers. Supercharge your impact by asking for referrals to other affiliate marketing or joint venture opportunities and frequent updates on the types of promotions (and the results) each affiliate was running internally.

7. Implement a Pay per click campaign. Look for bidding software, like Tangare, to bid on high placements on pay-per-click engines such as Google and Bing. Don't buy untargeted ads; the best ROI for your money today is specific keyword buys on search engines or pay-per-click engines.

8. Provide something for free. Using the guidance of Robert Allen, author of "Multiple Streams of Internet Income," emailing short surveys designed to motivate participation in the development of the site. Space the surveys a week or so apart and slowly build momentum among the email recipients. As an example in the nutrition space, to whet their appetites for a "revolutionary new nutrition site," the email surveys can include some viral recommendation components attached to a giveaway (either a discount coupon, a contest to win free supplies, or a surprise bonus gift to be determined).

So there you have it. For less than $1,000, you can initiate a site launch with instantaneous traffic from both affiliates and search engines. After the launch, wyou can then try other indirect promotions such as public relations and personal appearances.

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