Small Biz Advice en Virtual Real Estate Brokerage: The Future of Real Estate <div data-history-node-id="459" class="node node--type-blog node--view-mode-rss ds-2col-stacked-fluid clearfix"> <div class="group-header"> <div class="field field--name-node-title field--type-ds field--label-hidden field__item"><h2> Virtual Real Estate Brokerage: The Future of Real Estate </h2> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-date field--type-datetime field--label-hidden field__item"><time datetime="2017-08-08T12:00:00Z" class="datetime">August 08, 2017</time> </div> </div> <div class="group-footer"> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-image field--type-image field--label-hidden field__item"> <img src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" width="1000" height="667" alt="virtual real estate brokerage" data-src="/sites/default/files/2017-08/virtual-real-estate-brokerage.jpg" class="b-lazy" typeof="foaf:Image" /> </div> <div class="clearfix text-formatted field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field__item"><h1>Virtual Real Estate Brokerage: The Future of Real Estate</h1> <p> </p> <p>Real estate is a local business, right?<span>  </span>Well, maybe not so much.<span>  </span>Technology has flattened the world and now allows us to hire whom we want for what we want, for whatever we want, largely unimpeded by geography.<span>  </span>Why should commercial real estate brokerage and be any different?  Can we have a world in which virtual real estate brokerage exists for commercial real estate? </p> <h3> </h3> <h2>Virtual Services in Other Industries</h2> <p>Let's look at some examples of services you can now get through the internet:</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank"><strong>Luke's Place</strong></a> a virtual legal clinic through Skype.<span>  </span>Perfect for people who live in rural communities and find it hard to meet with a lawyer.<span>  </span></p> <p> </p> <p><img alt="lukes-place-virtual-legal-advice.png" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/lukes-place-virtual-legal-advice.png" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p> </p> <p> </p> <p><a href="" target="_blank"><strong>Vet Partners</strong></a>  - yes, you can now be hooked up with a veterinarian through Skype - perfect for emergency situations in which you need on-demand advice for an emergency with your pet.<span>  </span></p> <p> </p> <p><img alt="virtual-vet-advice.png" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/virtual-vet-advice.png" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p> </p> <p> </p> <p><a href="" target="_blank"><strong>VarageSale</strong></a> why go to garage sales in your neighborhood when you can go to virtual garage sales?</p> <p> </p> <p><img alt="varage-sale.png" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/varage-sale.png" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p> </p> <p> </p> <p><strong><a href="" target="_blank"></a></strong> a marketplace of all kinds of experts collected in one can search by topic, pick an expert and schedule a call on a pay per minute basis to reach out to an expert that can answer a question on just about any topic.<span>  </span></p> <p> </p> <p><img alt="clarity-virtual-advice.png" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/clarity-virtual-advice.png" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p> </p> <p><a href="" target="_blank"><strong>Kim Doyal</strong></a> book 1.5 hour session with Kim and she will talk you through your website strategy.<span>  </span>Kim specializes in Wordpress and marketing.<span>  </span>Your business can get unstuck in just 90 minutes.<span>  </span></p> <p> </p> <p><img alt="virtual-coaching.png" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/virtual-coaching.png" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p> </p> <p><a href="" target="_blank"><strong>Virtual Assistants</strong></a> through a service like Virtual Staff Finder, you can hire a full-time assistant for as little as $500 - $1,000 per month.<span>  </span></p> <p> </p> <p><img alt="virtual-staff-finder.png" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/virtual-staff-finder.png" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p> </p> <p> </p> <p><strong><a href="" target="_blank">Virtual High School</a></strong> get your high school education from anywhere in the world.<span>  </span></p> <p> </p> <p><img alt="virtual-high-school.png" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/virtual-high-school.png" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p> </p> <p> </p> <p><a href="" target="_blank"><strong>Talkspace</strong></a> has over 1,000 licensed therapists to choose from to help you through tough times.</p> <p> </p> <p><img alt="talkspace-online-therapy.png" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/talkspace-online-therapy.png" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p> </p> <p><strong><a href="" target="_blank">Virtual Yoga</a></strong> take a yoga class with others online.<span>  </span></p> <p> </p> <p><img alt="virtual-yoga.png" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/virtual-yoga.png" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p> </p> <p><strong><a href="" target="_blank">Financial Advice</a></strong> Katie Brewer of Your Richest Life offers fee-only financial advice for a monthly retainer.<span>  </span>All of her advice is provided virtually through Skype sessions.</p> <p><img alt="virtual-financial-advice.png" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/virtual-financial-advice.png" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p> </p> <p> </p> <p><a href="" target="_blank"><strong>Udemy</strong></a> learn virtually anything you want, taught by individuals from all over the world.<span>  </span></p> <p> </p> <p><img alt="udemy.png" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/udemy.png" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <h3> </h3> <h3> </h3> <h3>Virtual Real Estate Brokerage in Residential Real Estate</h3> <p><a href="" target="_blank"></a> offers high commission splits to their agents, a powerful app that allows realtors to conduct all of their business through that app, and does not offer an office.<span>  </span></p> <p> </p> <p><img alt="virtual-real-estate-agent.png" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/virtual-real-estate-agent.png" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p> </p> <p>As an agent at their brokerage, you pay either $40 per month or $100 per month, and then enjoy taking home 85% of each commission.<span>  </span></p> <p><img alt="Join-real.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/Join-real.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p> </p> <p>Their model is to attract enough agents through the high commission splits and save money on the costs associated with running an office.<span>  </span></p> <p>The agents and real estate service themselves are not virtual...the agents of the brokerage will still meet up with you and show you homes to buy...they just all work from home (or Starbucks).<span>  </span></p> <p>Basically any service that is advice-based can be transmitted through text, audio and video from anywhere in the world.<span>  </span></p> <p>So long as the provider of the advice has credibility, location should not matter.<span>  </span></p> <p>So how does this tie into commercial real estate?<span>  </span></p> <p>Shouldn't a <a href="">commercial lease review company</a> have local market knowledge?<span>  </span></p> <p>Well, in the case of a small business owner looking to renew a lease...not really.<span>  </span></p> <p>You see, if a commercial tenant is negotiating a lease renewal and not involving a real estate broker (which is the most common scenario), then where is the business owner getting their market information in that case?<span>  </span></p> <p>The answer is that either the business owner has paid attention to where the local rental rates are at, or has not, but in either case the business owner has made the decision on whether the price (rent) is fair or not.<span>  </span></p> <p>The problem is the rest of the items in the lease.<span>  </span>The stuff the business owner is not even aware of.<span>  </span></p> <p>Think of the rent as the tip of the iceberg and all the other issues are beneath the surface.<span>  </span></p> <p>That is the stuff that typically a real estate lawyer would advise on.</p> <p>But if the small business owner did not want to hire a real estate broker to assist on a renewal, chances are they may not want a real estate lawyer, either.<span>  </span></p> <p>The problem with the conventional lawyer model is that there is an incentive to build billable hours.<span>  </span>And those hours are usually at a high price per hour.<span>  </span></p> <p>Lawyers serve their purpose and this article is certainly not designed to discourage anyone from hiring a lawyer to assist with their lease.<span>  </span></p> <p>But in our experience most commercial small business tenants view lawyers as a bit too expensive for something they are not sure about.<span>  </span>They are just not sure how much value a lawyer will add to their lease, so many small business owners tackle the commercial lease negotiation all by themselves.<span>  </span></p> <p>In seeing over 500 commercial lease transactions, there are plenty of cases in which a lawyer's comments seemingly were not in proportion to the bill.<span>  </span></p> <p> </p> <h2>Virtual Real Estate Brokerage in Commercial Real Estate</h2> <p>So why should a tenant's choice of advisors be restricted to commercial real estate brokers and commercial real estate lawyers in their town?<span>  </span></p> <p>What if there was a virtual commercial real agent that could offer a <a href="/blog/lease-abstracting-complete-tenant-guide">lease abstracting service</a> for a one-time fee?<span>  </span>What if that one-time fee was at a reduced rate, given the reach and scale of the internet?<span>  </span>And what if this advice given to the tenant was behind the scenes, so the tenant could still be in control of the negotiation?<span>  </span></p> <p><img alt="lease-ref-virtual-real-estate-brokerage.png" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/lease-ref-virtual-real-estate-brokerage.png" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p><span>And most importantly, why should a tenant not have access to the best agents.  Agents the tenant chose by experience or specialty, rather than geography. </span></p> <p>That is why Lease Ref exists. <span> </span>To provide the future of commercial real estate today.<span>  </span><span> </span><span>  </span></p> <p> </p> <p>For more on how we provide virtual commercial real estate advice, check out this super serious video:</p> <div class="video-embed-field-responsive-video"><iframe width="854" height="480" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen" class="b-lazy" data-src="" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw=="></iframe> </div> <p> </p> <p> </p> <p><a href="" target="[objectObject]"><img alt="" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/lease-review_0.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></a></p> <p> </p> <p> </p> <p><img alt="commercial-lease.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/commercial-lease.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p></div> <div class="bottom-links"> <div class="field--taxonomy-terms clearfix field field--name-field-blog-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-above"> <div class="field__label">Post Tags</div> <div class="field__items"> <div class="field-item--taxonomy-term field__item"><a href="/taxonomy/term/72" class="taxonomy-term" hreflang="en">Negotiating</a></div> <div class="field-item--taxonomy-term field__item"><a href="/taxonomy/term/76" class="taxonomy-term" hreflang="en">Small Biz Advice</a></div> </div> </div> </div> </div> </div> Tue, 08 Aug 2017 12:07:24 +0000 Jeff 459 at Help a Reporter Out (HARO): The Ultimate Guide | Lease Ref <div data-history-node-id="458" class="node node--type-blog node--view-mode-rss ds-2col-stacked-fluid clearfix"> <div class="group-header"> <div class="field field--name-node-title field--type-ds field--label-hidden field__item"><h2> Help a Reporter Out (HARO): The Ultimate Guide | Lease Ref </h2> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-date field--type-datetime field--label-hidden field__item"><time datetime="2017-06-26T12:00:00Z" class="datetime">June 26, 2017</time> </div> </div> <div class="group-footer"> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-image field--type-image field--label-hidden field__item"> <img src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" width="560" height="370" alt="help a reporter out" data-src="/sites/default/files/2017-06/haro.PNG" class="b-lazy" typeof="foaf:Image" /> </div> <div class="clearfix text-formatted field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field__item"><p>What is <a href="" target="_blank">Help A Reporter Out (HARO)</a>?  It is a free email subscription service that allows business owners and entrepreneurs to provide news, tips, stories and expertise to journalists, writers and bloggers.  Businesses get exposure, and journalists get content. </p> <p>Have you ever wanted to get your business featured in Inc, Entrepreneur, CNN, or the Huffington Post?  It could happen through Help a Reporter?.for free!</p> <p><img alt="media-outlets-using-HARO.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/media-outlets-using-HARO.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p>But you need to know the rules of the game. </p> <p>And this guide is your one stop to learn everything you need to know. </p> <h2>Why Help a Reporter Out Was Invented</h2> <p><a href="" target="_blank">Peter Shankman</a> invented HARO in 2008.  It was originally a Facebook page, but quickly took off and was converted into an email platform.  </p> <p>It's success is largely due to the explosion of content marketing.  </p> <p><img alt="Content-marketing-interest-over-time.png" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/Content-marketing-interest-over-time.png" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p>Why has content marketing grown so much?</p> <p>Well, anyone can now be a publisher - whether it is free (social media), or through your company website, which is almost free. </p> <p>And everyone wants website traffic.  Because web traffic provides you an opportunity to generate more leads, build a brand, develop a following, and make sales. </p> <p>Take the <a href="" target="_blank">American Express Open Forum blog</a> for instance. </p> <p>They have created a community where small business owners can continually read their blog and get advice on how to run a better business. </p> <p>That in turn makes people more loyal to their brand. </p> <p>And more likely to use their products. </p> <p>Here they are giving leadership advice. </p> <p><img alt="Open-forum-blog.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/Open-forum-blog.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p> </p> <p>Leadership advice?  From a credit card company?  Whaaaaat?</p> <p>The basic marketing principle is that your target market has interests outside of your industry / product.  Therefore if you can provide value to them online when they are searching for other things, you will be more top of mind (and tip of tongue). </p> <p>...and less likely to worry about the transaction fees American Express charges :-).    </p> <p>In American Express' case, here is the strategy....</p> <p><img alt="american-express-blog.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/american-express-blog.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p>Take this blog post you are reading right now for example, what does HARO have to do with <a href="">commercial lease reviews</a>?  The common thread is that businesses want PR, and many of them also have leases.</p> <p>So eventually every small business reading this article may also need a <a href="/blog/lease-abstracting-complete-tenant-guide">commercial lease abstract</a> at some point too.  Sorry - shameless plug...back to our story... </p> <p>In other words, everybody is a publisher today.  And HARO connects 35,000 reporters, journalists and bloggers with over 400,000 sources. </p> <h2>Help a Reporter Out Benefits</h2> <p>Ok, so you are interested in becoming a source for some reporters.  Great!</p> <p>Let's just summarize the benefits - because you will be making a commitment to answering some queries and that will take some time and effort. </p> <p>So here they are:</p> <p><strong>Authority / Thought Leadership</strong></p> <p>This one is the most obvious.  If you are quoted in a credible news story by a credible news outlet, it can have a profound impact on your business. </p> <p>Here is an example of small law firm in Irvine, CA - <a href="" target="_blank">Legally Nanny</a> - who was quoted in the Wall Street Journal. </p> <p><img alt="legally-nanny.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/legally-nanny.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p><a href=""></a></p> <p>Here is their "in the news" page, which lists where they have been featured (they have been busy): <a href=""></a></p> <p> </p> <p><strong>Improved SEO (Search Engine Optimization) / Google Rankings</strong></p> <p>Google built their empire on an algorithm that counts backlinks from other sites as the primary method for knowing how to rank sites. </p> <p> </p> <p><img alt="backlinking.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/backlinking.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p> </p> <p>That is changing (Google is now trying to simply rank the best content), but the strongest ranking factor still remains links from quality sites on the internet. </p> <p>(a full list of the Google ranking factors: <a href="" target="_blank">The 200 Ranking Factors</a>)</p> <p>Guess what?  HARO only brings you story opportunities from extremely strong sites (well?mostly). </p> <p>So being successful with your submissions means you will get a nice backlink to your site from an authority site. </p> <p>That means you will now rank higher in Google for keywords you want to rank for, as some of that trust is spread to your site. </p> <p>Like this, the movement we experienced in June</p> <p> </p> <p><img alt="lease-ref-keyword-rankings.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/lease-ref-keyword-rankings.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p> </p> <p><strong>More Website Traffic Through Referrals</strong></p> <p>Not everyone who reads those articles online will end up clicking through to your website.  But any that do are people that never would have known about you. </p> <p>Each time you are quoted on an article, that link back to your site will now live on the internet, acting as a little soldier that send over referral traffic from time to time. </p> <p>For instance, this contribution we made to <a href=""></a>.  It only took a few minutes to make the contribution and so far we have received 17 new visitors to our site that we would never have seen otherwise. </p> <p> </p> <p><img alt="referral-traffic.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/referral-traffic.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p> </p> <p>You can check out the entire article HERE: <a href="" target="_blank"><strong>10 Workplace Productivity Tools</strong></a>   </p> <p>So even if you do not end up ranking any higher in Google, you will end up having more traffic from the referrals. </p> <p>And guess what? </p> <p>Those people will already know, like and trust you more than someone who is just clicking on a search result. </p> <p> </p> <h2>Help a Reporter Sign Up Tips</h2> <p>The sign-up process for HARO is seamless, but ensure you do one thing regularly that will really boost your web traffic. </p> <p>1) Make sure you fill in your website address</p> <p>2) Modify your company name every month or so</p> <p>Here is why:</p> <p>Just in case Google gives any weight to your website in your profile, make sure it is filled out and it will count as a backlink to your site (making it easier to rank). </p> <p><img alt="include-website-information.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/include-website-information.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p> </p> <p><strong>Newbies</strong>: reminder - other websites that link back to your site is a good thing?it pushes you up in Google rankings. </p> <p>The second tip is an advanced SEO technique. </p> <p>You see, when you submit your story or tip, it is intercepted by HARO and they put a stamp on it.  That stamp essentially says ?Hey, you received a response from?:</p> <p><strong>Company</strong>: ABC Flowers</p> <p><strong>Name</strong>: Rose Smith</p> <p><strong>Website</strong>: <a href=""></a> </p> <p> </p> <p>It looks like this:</p> <p><img alt="haro-email-to-reporter.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/haro-email-to-reporter.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p> </p> <p>If the reporter likes your response she may just copy and paste your response and then give the attribution to with the words used in the link being "ABC Flowers. </p> <p>What is wrong with this? </p> <p>The "ABC Flowers" keyword combination is called anchor text. </p> <p>This link is not only a "vote" for your website, but it also gives Google a signal to rank your website for the search term "ABC Flowers". </p> <p>But ABC Flowers is probably already ranking # 1 for that search term.  Google has probably already figured that out.    </p> <p>So we want to modify that to include other keywords that are useful to rank for. </p> <p>Let's say that ABC Flowers is located in Denver. </p> <p>And margins on roses is higher than tulips. </p> <p>But ABC Flowers does not rank well for things like "Denver Flower Shops", and "Roses in Denver". </p> <p>By rotating the anchor text, ABC Flowers will have a better chance of ranking for those terms. </p> <p>So ABC Flowers should go back into the profile and change the company name periodically to things like:</p> <p><strong>ABC Flowers | Denver's Best Roses</strong></p> <p><strong>ABC Flowers - Denver's Best Flowers</strong></p> <p><strong>Best Denver Roses - ABC Flowers</strong></p> <p><br /><img alt="haro-signing-up-process.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/haro-signing-up-process.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p> </p> <p>See what I mean?...</p> <p> </p> <p><img alt="HARO-profile-modified.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/HARO-profile-modified.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p> </p> <p>Now there is no guarantee that the writer will be willing to add a slogan or description to the anchor text - they may truncate it back down to just your company name. </p> <p>But for every link you acquire with the expanded version, it will provide a more diverse array of keywords that you can rank for. </p> <p> </p> <h2>Help a Reporter Categories</h2> <p>As you can see, there are a number of categories.  My advice is to pick what you want to be known for. </p> <p><img alt="haro-categories.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/haro-categories.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p> </p> <p>The General category is quite broad, but I recommend you sign up for it - you can always change your preferences later. </p> <p>If you happen to have knowledge on a topic that is not related to your business, feel free to answer, but the link / PR mention will not have as much value than if it is right up your alley. </p> <p> </p> <h2>Signing Up as a Reporter</h2> <p>If your Alexa rating is in the top 1,000,000 (meaning you are one of the top 1M most visited websites worldwide), then you can also sign up as a "reporter" and you can get input from sources to add content to your blog.  You can check out your ranking <a href="" target="_blank">HERE</a>. </p> <p>If you are just starting out, do not worry about being a reporter.  Worry about being a source. </p> <p> </p> <h2>How to Use Help a Reporter Out</h2> <h3>How to Get Your HARO Submissions Accepted</h3> <p>Ok peeps.  Time for the tips you have all been waiting for.  After all, we are only using HARO to actually get our submissions accepted, right? </p> <p>At the time of writing this article, Lease Ref has been successful 21 times on Help a Reporter.</p> <p>Here is a screen share:</p> <p><img alt="haro-wins.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/haro-wins.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p> </p> <p>We recently spoke with a PR specialist in NYC and he said Holy &amp;@$#!? </p> <p>By the way, that guy was a great guy and he works on a performance basis (although there is an onboarding fee).  Here is his website in case you are interested in finding a credible PR guy: <a href="" target="_blank">Chis Barrett</a>.</p> <p>(tip: he is pretty well established and normally only accepts clients by referral so if you reach out, ensure that you are not just kicking tires).</p> <p>So before we get into the pro tips, feel free to check out what our submissions looked like:</p> <p>Like this one from Kabbage (see full post <a href="" target="_blank"><strong>HERE</strong></a>)</p> <p><img alt="kabbage-haro-contribution.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/kabbage-haro-contribution.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p> </p> <p>And this one from Fit Small Business (see full post <a href="" target="_blank"><strong>HERE</strong></a>)</p> <p><img alt="haro-response-fit-small-business.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/haro-response-fit-small-business.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p> </p> <p>And this one from Invoiceberry (see full post <a href="" target="_blank"><strong>HERE</strong></a>)</p> <p><img alt="haro-invoiceberry-response.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/haro-invoiceberry-response.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p> </p> <p>So hopefully checking out those submissions you have picked up on the cadence of what a successful submission looks like. </p> <p>Did you notice that almost none of them had anything to do with real estate?  LOL.  But they were business related.  And our customers are business owners. </p> <p>By the way, in case you are wondering what is a good success ratio for HARO submissions, that can really be all over map.  Ours currently is 21 out of 94.  </p> <p> </p> <p><img alt="haro-success-ratio.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/haro-success-ratio.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <h2> </h2> <h2>Here are the guiding principles we use for responding to HARO:</h2> <p><strong>Self Awareness</strong></p> <p>Folks, talent has a way of rising to the top.  Not everyone is a great writer.  We all have our own set of unique talents. </p> <p>Many of the HARO requests are designed for short, useful, insightful tips from multiple experts - "round up" type of posts.  If you can deliver on that, then stay in the game.  If it is not your forte then you should focus on one of two things: get better or move on. </p> <p>In order to get better, I would suggest following up on the articles when they are published and see what the successful submissions looked like.  Ask yourself why those were accepted and yours were not. </p> <p>For instance, I realized on a few submissions that my content was a little too skinny and I did not tie it back into a real-life example.  So I beefed up my submissions a bit and got better at story telling.   </p> <p> </p> <p><strong>Be Unique</strong></p> <p>If the story is about tools you use for your business don?t be the guy who submits Dropbox or Evernote.  Come up with something that makes the reporter go "Hmmm... I have not heard of that tool before".</p> <p>You have stories and experiences that are unique to you.  So when responding to HARO queries, ask yourself what unique knowledge you have that nobody else has.  Make it so your reporter cannot say no because you are putting something so unique and compelling that they just HAVE to include your submission into their story. </p> <p>Afterall, they want to look good and create an article that people will bookmark, share and link to.  So your job is to make them look good. </p> <p><a href="" target="_blank">Evan Tarver</a>, an author, business writer, screenwriter and HARO veteran (as a reporter), has the following Help A Reporter advice:</p> <p><em>My number one tip is to respond as if you're being quoted directly. Reporters are looking for quotes that support their articles rather than novel-sized responses that explain things they might already know. </em></p> <p><em>Unfortunately, a lot of people try to "data dump" their answers to HAROs without taking the time to clean it up and make it quotable. This isn't good. When you respond to a HARO, assume that the person will copy / paste your response into their article. Of course, they probably won't actually do this, but it's good practice to make sure your responses are up to snuff.</em></p> <p><em>To that end, you'll want to include some stats when possible. The best way to get chosen for a quote is to write a 2 - 3 sentence pithy response that has a fact or figure that supports your claim. This helps reporters and other HARO users quickly skim your response, understand the value you're delivering, and include it in an article. </em></p> <p><img alt="help-a-reporter-out-tips.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/help-a-reporter-out-tips.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p> </p> <p>Maggie Aland from <a href="" target="_blank">FitSmallBusiness</a> (a popular blog for small business owners) had similar advice:</p> <p><em>As a journalist, I get tons of responses every time I use HARO. In order to stand out, I recommend <strong>not pitching the first response that comes to your mind</strong> when you read the query. It's likely that your first thought was also the first thing multiple other people thought as well. Instead, dig a little deeper and get creative with your response. It's way more likely that your pitch will be accepted if it's unique and doesn't sound similar to multiple other pitches. If you're struggling to come up with a unique spin, consider <strong>adding insight from your own personal experiences</strong>. Journalists like to include this in their articles as it adds a different perspective than reporters are able to provide on their own. </em></p> <p><img alt="help-a-reporter-submission-tips.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/help-a-reporter-submission-tips.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p> </p> <p><strong>Do Not be Salesy</strong></p> <p>This is not about you.  Do not try to sell your stuff on this platform.  Answer the queries and be helpful.  That is it. </p> <p> </p> <p><strong>Do Not Follow Up</strong></p> <p>Following up in business is always good advice.  But not here. </p> <p>Remember - there are over 400,000 sources on HARO and under 40,000 reporters.  So the inboxes of the reporters get filled up with plenty of story submissions. </p> <p> </p> <p><img alt="ratio-of-sources-to-journalists-haro.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/ratio-of-sources-to-journalists-haro.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p> </p> <p>Do not be the annoying person. </p> <p>This is a transaction - they provide the story opportunity, and you fill it with good content.  Don?t bother the authors as they have plenty of other people providing content for them to choose from. </p> <p>Take that time and energy and channel it into the next submission. </p> <p> </p> <p><strong>Follow Up on the Articles to Learn</strong></p> <p>Do follow up on the articles once they are live.  You can do this by keeping track in a spreadsheet all of your submissions. </p> <p>Editorial calendars will differ from site to site, but as a general rule it seems like websites publish their articles about 4 weeks after you see their query on HARO.  Although some turn around articles just a few days after they post their query. </p> <p> </p> <p><img alt="haro-turnaround-time.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/haro-turnaround-time.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p> </p> <p>So in the above spreadsheet example, go back and search for the title of the query + publisher website (or author).  If the post has gone live, read it and see what the successful submissions looked like. </p> <p> </p> <p><strong>Speed</strong></p> <p>This is important. </p> <p>HARO sends out their emails 3 times per day: 5:35am EST; 12:35pm EST and 5:35pm EST. </p> <p> </p> <p> </p> <p><img alt="times-haro-sends-out-emails.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/times-haro-sends-out-emails.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p> </p> <p>HARO reporters will tell you that they receive a flood of emails shortly after the email blasts go out.  Especially if they are writing an article for a prestigious outlet like the Huffington Post. </p> <p>So ask yourself, if you were a HARO reporter and you get a ton of email in 3 spikes every day, wouldn't you cater your schedule to be checking those emails starting at 5:40, 12:40 and 5:40? </p> <p>Of course you would.    </p> <p>And the quality of those initial responses is probably high.  Because it is the keeners who are really dedicated to HARO being a part of their business strategy. </p> <p>Add in the fact that sometimes these writers are on a short deadline.  Now they are not necessarily taking the absolute best content, but taking the best content that comes in early. </p> <p>So your odds go up dramatically by being a first mover. </p> <p>In fact, if you have not responded to a HARO query within 12 hours, you might as well move on. </p> <p> </p> <p><strong>Follow Instructions </strong></p> <p>With so many sources compared to reporters, follow instructions carefully.  If they ask for your social media links with your submission, do it.  If they want less than 200 words per response, follow the rules. </p> <p>Do not eliminate yourself by forcing the reporter to roll their eyes on your submission and hit delete.</p> <p><iframe allowfullscreen="" class="giphy-embed b-lazy" frameborder="0" height="270" width="480" data-src="" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw=="></iframe></p> <p><a href="">via GIPHY</a></p> <p> </p> <p><strong>Be Relevant</strong></p> <p>We caught up with Chris Guillebeau, who is known for <a href="" target="_blank">The Art of Non-Conformity</a> and red hot podcast <a href="" target="_blank">Side Hustle School</a>.  Here is what he had to say:</p> <p>For me the #1 thing is to be relevant and on-topic. I use HARO for sources for Side Hustle School, my daily podcast that is downloaded millions of times a month. </p> <p>I'm very specific about what I need to feature someone on the show. Quite often someone will write in who doesn't meet the criteria or doesn't want to share real details about their side hustle. That doesn't work! But when you <em>do</em> meet the criteria and have a great angle, I'd love to hear from you and the odds are good that we could feature you. </p> <p> </p> <p><img alt="help-a-reporter-quote-chris-guillebeau.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/help-a-reporter-quote-chris-guillebeau.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p> </p> <p>In case you may be wondering what a HARO query looks like, this is one from from Side Hustle School:</p> <p> </p> <p><img alt="side-hustle-school-haro-pitch.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/side-hustle-school-haro-pitch.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p> </p> <p><strong>Research Your Reporter...But Don't Email Them Directly</strong></p> <p>Ok, so do not get creepy, but a quick Google search and a scan of social media could give you a bit of insight into your reporter.  Many of them have their own blogs and you can see what they write about. </p> <p>And guess what guys?  They are human.  And so are you.  So be human. </p> <p>Make them laugh.  Give them a helpful tip.  Follow them on Twitter.  Like their Facebook page.  Comment on a blog post they wrote. </p> <p>But don't email them directly.  Matthew Kosinski, who uses Help a Reporter to crowdsource blog content for <a href="" target="_blank">'s blog</a>, advises:</p> <p> </p> <p><em>"People often email me directly to respond to our HARO queries, rather than using the website itself. I understand the urge to get in touch with the human being behind the query, but in all honesty, sending your response to my inbox instead of to HARO is only hurting you. Part of the reason why I use HARO is because of how easy it is to organize and sort through responses. My inbox, on the other hand, is a constant mess of press releases and story pitches. If you're emailing me instead of responding via HARO, there's a good chance I'm never going to see your response ? and if I do, I'm probably going to delete it. Everyone else responded through HARO ? what makes you special?"</em></p> <p> </p> <p><strong>Preplanning</strong></p> <p>If you really want to geek out on this stuff, go ahead and create a Word document with some pre-planned responses. </p> <p>Let's say that your niche is digital marketing.  Go ahead and type up your top 20 tips.  There are always queries that will ask for these kinds of tips and having them all in one place will allow you to just copy and paste your responses so you can act quickly. </p> <p>Since all reporters also require your name, position, company name, social media handles, etc. you can also have this in your Word document, ready for copy and pasting. </p> <p>This pre-planning can really pay off, given the number of responses each HARO reporter receives.  </p> <p>Constantina Kokenes at <a href="" target="_blank">Kabbage</a> (a leader in small business loans - now over the $3B mark for small business owners) tells us they typically receive 80-120 responses for each story request they submit.  You can read their blog <a href="" target="_blank">HERE</a>.</p> <p><img alt="kabbage-blog.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/kabbage-blog.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p> </p> <p><strong>Researching the News Outlet</strong></p> <p>Before you submit a story, you may want to check out the website of the news outlet to see if it is a good fit. </p> <p>Additionally you may want to check out the domain authority of the site as well (somehow some fairly low authority sites somehow can manage to show up on HARO). </p> <p>To do this for free, head over to and follow these steps:</p> <p> </p> <p><strong>1) Click on Free SEO Tools</strong></p> <p><img alt="moz-toolbar.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/moz-toolbar.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p><strong>2) Click on Open Site Explorer</strong></p> <p><img alt="open-site-explorer.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/open-site-explorer.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p><strong>3) Type in the website you want to get a link from</strong></p> <p><img alt="domain-authority.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/domain-authority.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p> </p> <p>Most sites will have a domain authority of 50 or 60.  You may not want a link from a site with a domain authority of less than 20. </p> <p> </p> <p><strong>Monitoring Your HARO Mentions</strong></p> <p>Unfortunately reporters are busy and they do not always email you back let you know if they have included you in their story. </p> <p>So?.</p> <p>I would recommend doing two things,</p> <p>1) Sign up at <a href=""></a>. </p> <p><img alt="brand-mentions.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/brand-mentions.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p> </p> <p>They monitor the web and will email you when a term you have inputted shows up on the web.  So sign up and input your company name. </p> <p> </p> <p>2) Do the same for Google Alerts.  Between the two you should be covered off. </p> <p><img alt="google-alerts.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/google-alerts.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p><strong>Pro Tip</strong>: from time to time you may find a random website mention your company name.  When you see that, reach out to those websites, thank them for mentioning your company, and kindly ask them to turn the text into a hyperlink back to your website. </p> <p>Most of the time they would be willing to do it, and a simple email like that boosts your SEO. </p> <p> </p> <h2>Help a Reporter Out Alternatives</h2> <h3>SourceBottle</h3> <p>There are not may sites similar to help a reporter out.  The second best option is <a href="" target="_blank">SourceBottle</a>. </p> <p>But they are second place like I would be to Usain Bolt in the 100 meters.  They have about 5 stories per day compared to HARO's 100+. </p> <p>Here is what Rebecca Derrington, Founder of SourceBottle says on Quora about Sourcebottle</p> <p><img alt="sourcebottle-quote.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/sourcebottle-quote.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p> </p> <p>We have been successful in getting a mention / link using Sourcebottle, and technically are success rate is 100%...but just do not think it is going to solve all your problems when you only get one email from them per day and it only has 5 story opportunities. </p> <p>Note that a lot of the stories are Australian based.  Mate.</p> <p> </p> <h3>Expertise Finder</h3> <p>We just stumbled across <a href="" target="_blank"></a>.  You can sign up as an expert and it is free to search and contact experts.  It appears to be mainly academics, however, you may have to get creative to figure out how that ties into promoting your small business. </p> <p> </p> <p><img alt="expertise-finder.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/expertise-finder.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p> </p> <p>If you have had any success using this platform, please reach out to us (we may even give you a media mention). </p> <p> </p> <h3>Profnet</h3> <p>Similar to Help a Reporter, but it?s not free.  To sign up you have to "Request more information" and then that leads to a sales call.  So we did not bother to learn more about it.  If you want to check it out, go to <a href=""></a>. </p> <p> </p> <p><img alt="profnet.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/profnet.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p> </p> <h3>Muck Rack</h3> <p>From what we can tell, Muck Rack is HARO on steroids and the target market is Fortune 1000 type of companies.  The sign-up process involves a software demo, so it is for serious PR users.  They have an impressive list of clients.  If you want to find out more, visit <a href=""></a>. </p> <p> </p> <p><img alt="muckrack.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/muckrack.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p> </p> <h3>Media Kitty</h3> <p>Originally focused on tourism, <a href="">Media Kitty</a> now has 10,000+ journalists and they are reaching new alleys like design, entertainment, mobile technology and style.  It is free to sign up, but it looks like it is a $99 minimum after the free trial period. </p> <p>Although it is not free, it could also mean that there is much less competition amongst other sources and may be worth checking out.  They say that their 28,000 editorial pitches each year result in 240,000 interviews and reviews. </p> <p> </p> <p><img alt="media-kitty.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/media-kitty.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p> </p> <h3>PitchRate</h3> <p>Their slogan is Speedy Media Match Making.  We just signed up for <a href="" target="_blank">PitchRate</a> so the jury is still out, but it looks promising.  There are quite a few categories to choose from. </p> <p> </p> <p><img alt="pitchrate.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/pitchrate.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p> </p> <h3>Blogdash</h3> <p>Although not free, Blogdash hooks you up with bloggers who have agreed to hear from brands.  We have not had any experience with this platform, but Kari DePhillips, owner of <a href="" target="_blank">The Content Factory</a> posted this on Quora:</p> <p> </p> <p><img alt="blog-dash-review.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/blog-dash-review.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p> </p> <h3>Quora</h3> <p>The world's question and answer site.  Although any links on the site are "no-follow" (meaning Google does not count them to improve your search rankings), if you genuinely add value to people's questions you can end up getting the benefits of authority, website traffic, and trust. </p> <p><img alt="quora.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/quora.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p>You are not answering reporter story requests, but you are answering questions the general population has, so do some searching on your industry, answer some questions, and over time if you are helpful you should see an increase in your website traffic. </p> <p>Afterall, there are now 400M people visiting Quora every month?</p> <p> </p> <p><img alt="quora-website-traffic.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/quora-website-traffic.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p> </p> <h3>Reddit</h3> <p>Did you think that 400M was a lot?  How about 1.3 billion (yes, that is billion with a B). </p> <p><img alt="reddit-monthly-website-traffic.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/reddit-monthly-website-traffic.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p> </p> <p>Be careful of this though - Reddit has a very particular culture.  Nobody wants to be sold to.  So do not do any selling.  It is a community of hardcore people who have very passionate interests. </p> <p>So if you sell widgets, go on to Reddit and just educate people about widgets.  Do not push your widgets. </p> <h3> </h3> <h3>Facebook Groups</h3> <p>Facebook groups are booming as it has become the perfect way for people to network online and get to know others quickly, while coming together and helping each others businesses out. </p> <p>You can get all the free publicity you want through Facebook groups, but as per above, do not go on and say "Hi everyone, nice to meet you, please buy my stuff." </p> <p>If you are interested in building your our Facebook Group, Moz has a great article here: <a href="" target="_blank">How to Build a Facebook Group</a>. </p> <h3> </h3> <h3>Just Create Epic Content</h3> <p>Want people to talk about you?  Create something that people love and talk about online.  Make it a no-brainer for bloggers to link to and for people to click their social share buttons (hint hint). </p> <p>If you are interested in a simple, 9 minute video from Moz, the authority figure on epic content, here is their <a href="" target="_blank">Whiteboard Friday on 10X Content</a>.  </p> <p>There are plenty of other ways to get free PR as an alternative to HARO - we thought we would list of a few of the big ones.  Let's keep moving along.</p> <p> </p> <h2>HARO Upgraded Packages</h2> <p>HARO is a freemium model.  You can use it for free, or get more benefits from paying. </p> <p>The paid options range from $19 per month to $149 per month.  You can see the packages below, or you can click <a href="" target="_blank"><strong>HERE</strong></a>. </p> <p><img alt="help-a-reporter-pricing-model.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/help-a-reporter-pricing-model.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p> </p> <p>The two most interesting upgraded features are:</p> <p>1) Building profiles so that reporters can find out more about you (not sure what real value there is on this, given how easy everyone is found on social media these days)</p> <p>2) Getting a head start - get the story requests before the general public.  The Fast Pass! </p> <p>It would be very difficult to quantify the value of the fast pass, as they do not indicate how much of a head start you get. </p> <p>Also, while speed is important, if you answer HARO requests quickly (and provide useful content), that should be good enough. </p> <p>If you want some more information on the benefits of an upgraded HARO profile, check out this article: <a href="" target="_blank">How to Build Backlinks and Get Press Using HARO</a>.  Christopher Gimmer of <a href="" target="_blank">Snappa</a> shows you how a premium profile can help build your credibility with reporters through your profile.</p> <p> </p> <h2>Creating a HARO Submission Template</h2> <p>Remember people - we want to get to the point as quickly as possible and want to provide value. </p> <p>Here is a sample template response:</p> <p><strong>Subject:</strong> &lt;Pick a flashy subject that will stand out - do not be boring&gt;</p> <p>Hi Alison,</p> <p>Great article idea!</p> <p>Here are my best tips on &lt;subject&gt;:</p> <p>1</p> <p>2</p> <p>3</p> <p>I hope this helps!  Good luck with the article.  If you happen to use my contribution I am happy to share on social as well as link to it! </p> <p>To save some time, all of my social media handles are below, and if you link to my site, please feel free to use: <strong>Lease Ref | Commercial Lease Reviews Online</strong> (website: <strong><a href=""></a></strong>). </p> <p>Best regards,</p> <p>Since many times the blogger will just copy and paste the response directly, write it as if you are placing it directly into their blog post. </p> <p> </p> <h2>Reporters That Use HARO Just to Promote Their Business</h2> <p>Beware of HARO reporters that are actually gaming the system for their own financial gain. </p> <p>Whaaaat?</p> <p>I have noticed that there are reporters that have the exact same topics that they seem to run over and over.  And it is all designed to get small business owners to trip into the products or services they sell. </p> <p>It is a brilliant strategy actually. </p> <p>But ethical?  Well...</p> <p>Here is how it works. </p> <p>The reporter runs a story that tons of small business owners will respond to.  Something like "Do you do your own PR for your small business?" or "Are you seeking influencers to promote your product?"</p> <p>And the story is to be run in a household name news outlet like Entrepreneur or Inc. or the Huffington Post. </p> <p>Obviously there are tons of small business owners that would want to be featured in that article. </p> <p>What is beneficial for the reporter is that a whole bunch of new leads come right to that reporter's inbox. </p> <p>Now I am not insinuating that there are any scams on HARO, but you should be aware of the fact that you may think you are on a platform to provide stories to reporters, and then find yourself being offered to join a mastermind, online course, private Facebook group, etc. </p> <p>Just be careful that when you think you are building a relationship with a credible journalist that can open doors for you, that person could have been using HARO as a platform to get customers. </p> <p>You should also be aware that if a reporter offers you a placement in exchange for money, that is against Google's guidelines so you could be in the sandbox (that means they will take away your rankings). </p> <p> </p> <h2>Building Relationships with Journalists</h2> <p>I am not here to tell that you once a HARO reporter accepts a submission from you, then you are now best friends and you will be featured over and over. </p> <p>But on the other hand, if it was a positive transaction for both sides, the door may be open for you to pitch ideas to journalists rather than waiting for stories to come to you through HARO. </p> <p>My advice is act like a normal person.  Do not hound journalists.  Be real.  Add value.  Ask yourself "what's in it for them?"</p> <p>Here is what Jake Johnson, Head of Content and Creative at <a href="">Infusionsoft</a> (and HARO reporter), has to say about building relationships:</p> <p> </p> <p><img alt="haro-recommendation.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/haro-recommendation.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <h2> </h2> <h2>How Long to Wait Before Using Your HARO Submission for Yourself?</h2> <p>Props to Ksenia Newton of <a href="" target="_blank">Crosscap</a> for emailing us this question.  </p> <p>Sometimes you will come up with some good content in your submissions.  Good enough to use on your own blog!  When should you go ahead and use that material on your own website?  (hint: Google hates duplicate content)</p> <p>The problem is that often reporters will forget to let you know if they used your material (if they do not use your material you most likely will not get an email to let you know).  </p> <p><strong>General rule</strong>: give it 4 weeks.  Worst case scenario - if they use your submission after you have put it on your won site, then either delete that page from your site, or dramatically renovate it so that it is not duplicate content.  </p> <h2> </h2> <h2>Help a Reporter Out Reviews</h2> <p>If you google "help a reporter our reviews" and follow those links and read blog post comments you may see a wide range of reviews on HARO. </p> <p>But Help a Reporter Out is just a platform. </p> <p>The people that are upset with HARO should not hate the game.  Not everyone is going to win. </p> <p>There are a lot of people in the HARO game now, so it is competitive.  Everyone wants media mentions and links to their website. </p> <p>We can speak from experience that it has been a positive experience (and a lot of hard work).  We continue to get free referral website traffic and our rankings continue to improve, thanks to the backlinks we have created for our site. </p> <p> </p> <h2>Help a Reporter Out Training and Consulting Services</h2> <p>Well, you managed to get through over 5,000 words on this topic! </p> <p>Hopefully you are ready to sign up and start getting media mentions and links. </p> <p>Good luck with HARO!  </p> <p> </p> <p><img alt="jeff-at-lease-ref.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/jeff-at-lease-ref.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p></div> <div class="bottom-links"> <div class="field--taxonomy-terms clearfix field field--name-field-blog-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-above"> <div class="field__label">Post Tags</div> <div class="field__items"> <div class="field-item--taxonomy-term field__item"><a href="/taxonomy/term/76" class="taxonomy-term" hreflang="en">Small Biz Advice</a></div> </div> </div> </div> </div> </div> Mon, 26 Jun 2017 21:18:14 +0000 Jeff 458 at 132 Insanely Useful Websites for Entrepreneurs and Small Business <div data-history-node-id="452" class="node node--type-blog node--view-mode-rss ds-2col-stacked-fluid clearfix"> <div class="group-header"> <div class="field field--name-node-title field--type-ds field--label-hidden field__item"><h2> 132 Insanely Useful Websites for Entrepreneurs and Small Business </h2> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-date field--type-datetime field--label-hidden field__item"><time datetime="2017-04-23T12:00:00Z" class="datetime">April 23, 2017</time> </div> </div> <div class="group-footer"> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-image field--type-image field--label-hidden field__item"> <img src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" width="1200" height="628" alt="132 useful entrepreneurial websites " data-src="/sites/default/files/2017-04/132-insanely-useful-websites-for-entrepreneurs-and-small-business.png" class="b-lazy" typeof="foaf:Image" /> </div> <div class="clearfix text-formatted field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field__item"><h3>We spent over a year bookmarking the most insanely useful entrepreneurial websites for entrepreneurs and small business so you don't have to.</h3> <p>You may want to bookmark this page.  And put on a pot of coffee.  These entrepreneurial websites are going to knock your socks off.   </p> <p>We broke it down into different categories.  Since everybody loves website traffic, let's start there... </p> <h2><span>Website Traffic</span></h2> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Yext</a> puts businesses on the map.<span>  </span>Just fill in a profile once and Yext ensures you are cited on every directory so you can be found and all the information is consistent and seamless.<span>  </span><span> </span></span></p> <p><img alt="yext_0.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/yext_0.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Ahrefs</a> is possibly the greatest SEO tool ever invented.<span>  </span>Their blog and YouTube videos also rock.<span>  </span><span> Watch one of their YouTube videos and get started on your strategy to rank higher.  </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">WooRank</a> has a chrome extension that allows you to click a button and get the on-page SEO score for a website.<span>  </span>So you know what internal plumbing needs fixing and you can then rank higher in search engine results.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><img alt="woorank.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/woorank.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Soovle</a> is a super cool and free keyword idea generator for your website.<span>  </span>Type in what you want to rank for and it instantly lists popular searches on all of the search engines.<span>  </span>For instance, type in "shoes" and you will find that the most popular Yahoo search is "payless shoes", but on Google it is "shoes for crews".<span>  </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Backlinko</a> is run by one man wrecking crew Brian Dean.<span>  </span>He regularly ranks with or outranks armies of digital marketing teams.<span>  </span>He has courses he does periodically throughout each year.<span>  </span>Among other things, he is known for his article on the <a href="" target="_blank">200 Google Ranking Factors</a> and How to use the <a href="" target="_blank">Skyscraper Technique</a> to outrank your competition.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Position Checker</a> allows you to enter your domain name, what search term you want to know about and spits out where you rank for that keyword.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><img alt="google-position-checker.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/google-position-checker.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Word Cloud</a> creates a cloud of words to show you want keywords are most often used.<span>  Use to see what keywords your competition is using most often.  </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Google Trends</a> allows you to quickly verify interest levels of the public on your industry or business idea, based on the number of search queries it receives.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><img alt="google-trends-content-marketing.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/google-trends-content-marketing.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Google Search Console</a> most businesses set up Google Analytics but forget about Google Search Console (formerly Google Webmaster Tools).<span>  </span>It is easy to set up and provides valuable information on what happens BEFORE each click.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Marketing Inc.</a> You know when someone has world class talent, like underground poker room players or world class art thieves?<span>  </span>Glen Allsopp and his partner Diggy have been doing SEO for so long and they have seen and done it all.<span>  </span>Marketing Inc opens up periodically to provide intensive training focused around ranking websites.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Yoast SEO</a> should be immediately installed into every WordPress website - it is your watch dog on making sure your on page SEO is in order.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Varvy</a> is a simple and elegant tool.<span>  </span>Put in your website and it will tell you how well it follows Google?s guidelines.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">BuzzSumo</a> is the best tool to use if you want to create content that gets shares and links.<span>  </span>Just type in your topic and it will show you how often the most popular articles have been shared, on what social platforms, and even give you the backlinks and people who have shared those articles.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><img alt="buzzsumo-analysis.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/buzzsumo-analysis.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Answer The Public</a> is very cool for creating ideas for your blog.<span>  </span>Type in your topic and it will generate all kinds of questions people ask on that topic.<span>  </span>So then you create content that answers those questions, and rank well in Google when people search.<span>  </span>Warning, the guy is a little creepy.<span>  </span>Pro tip: the default country is set to the UK so switch that to your country.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Moz</a> has created the world's greatest online community of digital marketing experts and Rand Fishkin is one of the heroes of the digital marketing world.<span>  </span>Go to their blog, pick the topic you want to learn more about.<span>  </span>Start with the oldest posts make your way forward.<span>  </span>It is like a free online university.<span>  </span>You can also use their Open Site Explorer and find your domain authority - it is a widely accepted metric of your website's street cred.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><img alt="moz-open-site-explorer.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/moz-open-site-explorer.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Hemingway</a> is another amazing WordPress plugin that turns anyone's writing into something Hemingway would come up with.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Similar Web</a> allows you to spy on web traffic your competitors get.<span>  </span>You can see if they get it from searches, social or referral.<span>  </span>Then you can replicate their success.<span>   </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Content Marketing Institute</a> we live in a content marketing world, so you should be following the folks who invented the term.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Spyfu</a> allows you to spy on the competition.<span>  </span>See what keywords they qualify for, what Google Adwords they buy, how successful those ads are and you can generate reports on opportunities for what keywords you can qualify for organically or through paid search. </span></p> <p><img alt="spyfu.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/spyfu.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <h2><span>Social Media</span></h2> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Likestagram</a> automates the liking process on Instagram.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Pluggmarket</a> matches brands with influencers.<span>  </span>Are you a B to C company with a product that you want to get into the hands of influencers.<span>  </span>Sign up and see what happens.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><img alt="pluggmarket.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/pluggmarket.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Ripl</a> allows you to take your social media ads to the next level by turning pictures into quasi video.<span>  </span>Static image Facebook ads are singles.<span>  </span>Videos are homeruns and Ripl allows you to generate movement on your ads, which catches attention. </span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Meet Edgar</a> allows you to take your best content and automatically recycle it so new people can always be seeing your best stuff automatically.<span>  </span></span><span> </span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Social Media Examiner</a> puts on the best social media conference in San Diego each year and they have amazing content on social media and a great podcast with Michael Stelzner.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><a href="" target="_blank"><span>If This Then That (IFTTT)</span></a><span> allows you to automate everything.<span>  </span>Want your blog posts to be automatically posted to all your social channels?<span>  </span>Want to get an email when it calls for rain tomorrow?<span>  </span>Want a text alert when a stock hits a certain price? </span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Rick Mulready</a> is an authority on Facebook Ads.<span>  </span>Tune in and you will find out right away on his podcast The Art of Paid Traffic.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Amy Porterfield</a> is also a Facebook guru, but probably is best at creating online courses.<span>  </span>Tune in to her podcast and you will soon know how awesome she is.<span>  </span></span></p> <h2><span>Productivity</span></h2> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Noisli</a> block out annoying noises so you can get in the zone.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Rescuetime</a> tracks time spent on applications and websites so you stay away from Facebook!</span><span> </span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">The Freedom Journal</a> is a 5 minute per day journal that allows you to be grateful for what you have, and gets you focused on your goals.<span>  </span>Brought to you by podcast superstar John Lee Dumas of Entrepreneur on Fire.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">TaskRabbit</a> is like Uber for your household chores so you can spend more time focusing on your business.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Rainy Mood</a> helps you relax and get into a creative mode.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Coffitivity</a> recreates the sounds of coffee shops to get in the zone.<span>  </span>Bonus props for being awesomely creative on this concept!<span>   </span></span><span> </span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Trello</a> is a simple and easy way to get stuff done with your virtual team.<span>  </span>And it totally eliminates the need to email back and forth.<span>  </span>Just log in, see what's posted and get stuff done.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><img alt="trello-dashboard.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/trello-dashboard.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Feedly</a> consolidates all the content you consume into one spot so you do not have to surf multiple sites.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Rev</a> transcribes video and audio into text.<span>  </span>So you can create a video or podcast and get those spoken words into written words, so that you can get the SEO value of written words on your site.<span>  </span>All this for just $1 per minute.<span>  </span>Now that's a deal.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><img alt="rev.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/rev.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Muse</a> is your meditation personal assistant who monitors your brain waves and provides you feedback on when you are not relaxing.<span>  </span>Muse allows you to mediate for just 3 minutes per day so that you can unwind when your business is hectic.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Blue Apron</a> takes the guesswork out of eating healthy when you are busy.<span>   </span>It is a subscription based healthy food delivery platform so you can get the nourishment you need without going to the grocery store.<span>  </span></span></p> <h2><span>Inspiration</span></h2> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Gary Vaynerchuck</a> is a $@&amp;#ing living legend.<span>  </span>Every business owner and entrepreneur should be consuming his content daily.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Tony Robbins</a> needs no introduction.<span>  </span>Spend the 90 minutes to watch his special on Netflix I am Not Your Guru and you see what happens in his special programs.<span>  </span>It is pretty awesome.<span>  </span>Tony has also become such a powerful digital marketer<span> that Sumo just featured him in an epic article here: <strong><a href="" target="_blank">Growing Your Web Presence</a>.</strong></span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Tim Ferriss</a>, the author of the 4 Hour Work Week, is smart, insightful and thoughtful.<span>  </span>He also has such a soothing voice on his podcast that my kids are actually quiet and entranced in the car.<span>  </span>Thanks Tim!</span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">James Altucher</a> may be the world's greatest interviewer.<span>  </span>Extremely bright and successful but plays the role of the inquisitive student.<span>  </span>His podcast guests are world class because he is.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Side Hustle School</a> is a daily podcast under 10 minutes hosted by Chris Guillebeau.<span>  </span>It is inspirational to hear creative ideas people are coming up with to make money and there are lessons for even conventional small businesses.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank"></a> is start up advice from world class experts.<span>  </span>Shop around, pick out who you want to get advice from and then pay per minute on a call with them.<span>  </span>Pretty amazing concept.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><img alt="clarity-fm-dashboard.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/clarity-fm-dashboard.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Pat Flynn</a> is a hero for the little guy how wants to make some money online by adding value.<span>  </span>He is transparent, has given back and just a down to earth good dude.<span>  </span>Everyone can learn a ton of Pat.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">CEO Blog Nation</a> provides actionable advice to small businesses.<span>  </span>Many of the articles are crowd sourced so you get a range of opinions from entrepreneurs and small businesses that fight their battle every day.<span>  </span>Gresham does a great job with the site.<span>  </span></span><span> </span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Springwise</a> has the best newsletter.<span>  </span>It gives you the best new products that come out.<span>  </span>So you can stay on top trends.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><img alt="springwise.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/springwise.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">OKDork</a> is a blog you should follow because Noah Kagan is just an awesome person.<span>  </span>He just gives, gives, gives.<span>  </span>And he is super smart.<span>  </span>And he has been super successful.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Conferencebites</a> gives you the best soundbites from conferences to keep you fired up!</span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">The Hustle</a> is like having your most interesting friend spend the week to scour the internet and send you a curated list of the cool things that are going on in business and tech.<span>  </span>Except you get it every day.<span>  </span></span></p> <h2><span>Video</span></h2> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Tube Buddy</a> is basically an SEO tool for YouTube.<span>  </span>So if video is part of your strategy, you need to look into this tool.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Wistia</a> is a super high end, super slick video host alternative to YouTube and Vimeo.<span>  </span>It looks better, and provides way better metrics on who is watching your videos.<span>  </span>They have a free version that is Wistia branded and the premium version is about $100 per month.<span>  </span>Moz uses it for their <a href="" target="_blank">Whiteboard Fridays</a>.   Check out their free video course on <a href="" target="_blank">Udemy</a>.  </span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Camtasia</a> is an amazing $200 product allows you to produce super high quality videos with their editing software.<span>  </span>There is a course on that can bring you up to speed on how to be an expert.<span>  </span>It is an investment of about 10 hours to become pretty awesome at your own video editing. </span></p> <p><img alt="camtasia.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/camtasia.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">ScreenCast-o-Matic</a> allows you to record what is on your computer screen.<span>  </span>It?s free, but it watermarks your video.<span>  </span>The un-watermarked version is just $15 per year.<span>  </span>The video quality is HD.  I use it every day.<span>  </span>Great customer service and every easy to use.<span>  </span></span><span> </span></p> <h2><span>Marketing</span></h2> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">App Institute</a> allows small businesses to build apps.<span>  </span>Online.<span>  </span>Without any code.<span>  </span>Whaaaaaaaaat?</span></p> <p><img alt="app-builder.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/app-builder.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Moo</a> provides premium business cards, postcards and more.<span>  </span>Upload your own design, or pick from their templates.<span>  </span>Everybody makes comments about how great our business cards are.<span>  </span>Thanks Moo!</span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Venngage</a> is an incredibly simple infographic maker that has great business infographic templates.<span>  We have used it for every graphic on this website.    </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">99Designs</a> allows you to auction your logo design needs.<span>  </span>We just completed a round in which we received 90 designs for $400.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><span><span><a href="" target="_blank"></a> allows you to design your own logo.  </span></span></p> <p><span>Marketing School is the best tactical podcast for growing your web presence.<span>  </span>It is hosted by thought leaders <a href="" target="_blank">Eric Siu</a> and <a href="" target="_blank">Neil Patel</a>, it is about 7 minutes every day and packed with a punch!</span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Hub Spot</a> - they are kind of a big deal.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Prezi</a> is an amazing alternative to Powerpoint.<span>  </span>Seriously.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Cover Action Pro</a> focuses exclusively in making product shots look amazing for $297.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><img alt="cover-action-pro.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/cover-action-pro.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Iconfinder</a> is the largest database of icons on the internet.<span>  </span>Kind of like Shutterstock for icons.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Snappa</a> allows you to make marketing graphics in a snap.</span></p> <h2><span>Website Stuff</span></h2> <p><span><a href="">Giphy</a> allows you to jazz up your web content.<span>  </span>Just copy the code on their site and insert it into your post.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><iframe allowfullscreen="" class="giphy-embed b-lazy" frameborder="0" height="246" width="480" data-src="//" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw=="></iframe></p> <p><a href="">via GIPHY</a></p> <p> </p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Make A Gif</a> is for people who want to take it to the next level by making their own gif with their personal photos.<span>  </span></span><span> </span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Click Funnels</a> can allow you to abandon your website.<span>  </span>You run an ad, it goes to their landing page, your clients buy the product right there, or provide their email.<span>  </span>You may not give up your website, but Click Funnels still provides a powerful turnkey solution for your business.<span>  </span>Their home page has a great video to explain.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Lead Pages</a> is just like Click Funnels, but has fewer features and a lower price point.<span>  </span>A better option for people just getting into the concept of landing pages.<span>  </span>And they have been around for a long time and are probably the # 1 player in landing pages.<span>  </span>Pro tip: your ads should drive people to landing pages in order to drive the sale, not your web page, where customers can get distracted.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Mouseflow</a> allows you to stop guessing where people leave your site.<span>  </span>Just look at the heat map, which is based on where users move their mouse.<span>  </span>Ok, this is a bit creepy.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><img alt="computer-screen-heat-map.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/computer-screen-heat-map.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Elegant Themes</a> is a premiere provider of Word Press themes (over 400,000 clients).<span>  </span>I recommend subscribing to their blog posts.  They are detailed enough, but not too technical.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Social Triggers</a> focuses on the psychology behind consumer behavior online.<span>  </span>I recommend checking out Derek Halpern's YouTube videos and podcasts.<span>  </span>He knows his stuff and he talks about different things than other internet marketers.<span>  </span>His podcast guests are thought leaders in psychology.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Flippa</a> is the online marketplace for buying and selling websites.<span>  </span>Want a boost to your web traffic?<span>  </span>Buy a site on Flippa that already has backlinks and web authority and redirect it to your site.<span>  </span>Or buy a domain that is already getting traffic instead of starting a new one.<span>  </span>Pretty cool stuff huh?<span>  </span></span></p> <p><img alt="flippa-website.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/flippa-website.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Expired Domains</a> is like Flippa but keeps track of domains that are about to expire and ones that are up for auction.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Way Back Machine</a> allows you to determine if your web domain was used for something shady in the past.<span>  </span>Simply put in your website and it will show you screen captures of what the site was used for in the past.<span>  </span>So if you cannot rank in Google, maybe your web address was used for something spammy in the past.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Tiny PNG</a> allows you to crush the size of your images on your website, which allows your pages to load faster, which increases your Google rank.<span>  </span>Enough said.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><img alt="tiny-png.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/tiny-png.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">LinkMiner</a> is an amazing Chrome extension that plugs into the tool bar of your Chrome browser.<span>  </span>When you click on the icon, it highlights broken hyperlinks on that web page.<span>  </span>Not only can you find broken links on your site, but it is a great business development tool by checking the websites of prospects and approaching them with something of value - "Hey, I noticed a broken link on your website".<span>  </span>Check it out here (you must be in a Chrome browser though).</span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Brazen</a> increases your web conversions with their chat box technology.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Wix</a> allows you to build your own website quickly and easily.<span>  </span>And for free.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Usabilia</a> gives you live feedback on your website from a real person.<span>  </span></span><span> </span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">OptinMonster</a> has user exit technology.<span>  </span>Which means when a person?s mouse leaves your website you can pop up an offer (for instance, a free eBook).<span>  </span></span></p> <h2><span>Operations</span></h2> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Grasshopper</a> allows you to have a business phone number for as little as about $12 per month.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Survey Monkey</a> allows you to get feedback on your next move. </span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">SurveyAnyplace</a> focuses on creating fun, mobile, and interactive quizzes and surveys, allowing you to engage your audience AND get useful data.  </span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Printfriendly</a> allows you to print a web page without any of the stuff you do not need, like ads.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><img alt="print-friendly.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/print-friendly.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Kabbage</a> allows you to get quick access to working capital. Plus they have a great blog.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Shakelaw</a> allows you to create, sign and send legal documents.<span>  </span>In seconds.<span>  </span>OK.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Tactlaw</a> allows you to do contract checking.<span>  </span>Online.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Free My PDF</a> allows you to unlock PDF documents so you can get delete and insert pages.<span>  </span>Perfect for consolidating a few PDF documents into one.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Infusionsoft</a> puts your email strategy on steroids.<span>  </span>Are you ready to take it to the next level? </span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Bplans</a> is a great place to start thinking methodically about your business.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Calendly</a> takes the pain out of back and forth emails to line up a meeting.<span>  </span>It syncs with your calendar.</span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Zoom</a> allows you to record and simultaneous screen share your video conference calls.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">17hats</a> is an all in one application to handle your whole business.<span>  </span>So you can simplify your chaos.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">AppSumo</a> is like Groupon for software.<span>  </span>Daily deals.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">MindMeister</a> is an online mind mapping tool.<span>  </span>So teams can work together and simplify the complicated.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><img alt="mind-meister.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/mind-meister.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Wave Accounting</a> provides invoicing, accounting, receipt scanning and more for your small business.<span>  </span>For free.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">SheNegotiates</a> provides strategic coaching and leadership training with a punch.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Amolto</a> is a call recorder for Skype.<span>  </span>So you can use Skype.<span>  </span>And record it.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Fambiz</a> specializes in advice for family businesses.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Start Up Bros</a> are experts in selling on Amazon, so if you want to learn how to do that or how to supplement your existing sales on Amazon, take one of their webinars.<span>  </span></span></p> <h2><span>Outsourcing</span></h2> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Fiverr</a> provides freelancers that can complete your tasks for as little as $5 per gig, and has plenty of talented people who live in low cost of living countries that can produce quality work.  Not all Fiverr freelancers are good, so do your homework, try out various people and bookmark who you like.  It's only $5 to test the quality of each person.    </span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Upwork</a> is a higher quality version of Fiverr with detailed profiles and dollar amounts per hour posted.<span>  </span>The problem is that most people have profiles and do not make any money so they may not really be active on the platform anymore.<span>  </span>On the other hand, you can find bargains with people that are keen on building a track record and are under pricing themselves.  </span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Toptal</a> is the all-star version of Upwork.<span>  </span>Only 3% of people who apply get accepted (anyone can join both Fiverr and Upwork).<span>  </span>So you know you are getting Top Talent (and you are paying higher prices).<span>  </span></span></p> <p><img alt="toptal.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/toptal.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Virtual Staff Finder</a> is well-known and respected Chris Ducker's company.<span>  </span>He lives in the Phillipines and provides Filipino virtual assistants.<span>  </span>You pay about $500, they do all the legwork and introduce you to three candidates.<span>  </span>You do Skype interviews and pick who you want to work with.<span>  </span>You could also go to <a href=""><span></span></a> and for $50 you could post your own job and do all the screening.<span>  </span></span></p> <h2><span>Commercial Real Estate</span></h2> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">42Floors</a> scours the internet for commercial real estate listings so you don?t have to.<span>  </span>The freshest listings are at the top and spaces are removed after 30 days so you are looking at spaces that have been leased.<span>  </span>Once you find a space they can even hook you up with a qualified broker.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><img alt="42floors.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/42floors.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Get Digsy</a> allows you to describe your perfect office, industrial or retail space, and Digsy will match your needs with spaces that are available, while keeping your contact details private.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Lease Ref</a> allows you to get online commercial leasing advice without having to enlist a real estate lawyer or broker.<span>  </span>Just <a href="/how-it-works">upload your lease</a> and you will receive a score card on your lease, and tips on what to do next.<span>  </span>And yes, that was a shameless plug.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><img alt="lease-ref-online-commercial-lease-review.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/lease-ref-online-commercial-lease-review.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p><a href="" target="_blank">Breather</a> is the Uber of office space.  Rent space by the hour.  Perfect for very confidential meetings, interviews or a gathering of investors. </p> <h2><span>Networking</span></h2> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Shapr</a> is Tinder for business.<span>  Yes, there is now a Tinder for business.  </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Meetup</a> not only allows you to search for networking events, but when you attend them you also get nice backlinks back to your website, which helps improve your SEO.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Eventbrite</a> find your next experience.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Allconferences</a> is a directory for you to find what kind of conferences you may be interested in.<span>  </span>Check out this one where it is like camp for adults... <a href="" target="_blank">Fireside Conference</a>, which allows everyone to bond over campfires instead of in conference rooms.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><img alt="fireside.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/fireside.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Ten Thousand Coffees</a> is a network-building platform connecting like minded people together one coffee at a time.<span>  </span></span></p> <h2><span>Public Relations</span></h2> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">PR Influencers</a> allows you to command attention and be seen.<span>  </span>Mary Simms is a real pro and will know how to tell your story.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Help a Reporter Out</a> connects journalists with sources.<span>  </span>Do you have an opinion on something?<span>  </span>Sign up for a topic, receive one email per day and respond if you can help out.<span>  </span>If you are selected you will get exposure for your business with a link back to your website.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">SourceBottle</a> is just like Help A Reporter, but smaller, but with less competition as well.<span>  </span></span></p> <h2><span>Human Resources</span></h2> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank"></a> leverages the largest network of recruiters in the world for your business.<span>  </span></span><span> </span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Cash By Cycling</a> is like Fit Bit for bikes, tied together with rewarding employees for being healthy. </span><span> </span></p> <p><img alt="cash-by-cycling.PNG" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" class="b-lazy" data-src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/cash-by-cycling.PNG" src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw==" /></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Class Pass</a> allows people to try out multiple gyms with one pass.<span>  </span>The perfect employee gift for people new to the city.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">RunYourPool</a> is the perfect way to build morale at the company.<span>  </span>They cover all sports, plus awards season.<span>  </span></span></p> <h2><span>Learning</span></h2> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Udemy</a> has tons of inexpensive and tactical video based courses that teach you just about anything you would want to learn.<span>  </span></span><span> </span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Lynda</a> has almost 6,000 courses in business, technology and creative skills, but works on a monthly subscription model (Udemy is a fee for each course model).<span>  </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Teachable</a> is the leading software platform that allows you to incorporate a membership based course into your website.<span>  </span>So if you have something you can teach, you can plug that into your website and your service offering.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Go High Brow</a> gives you 5 minute lessons to your inbox every day.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">Fit Small Business</a> kicks out great, actionable content for small businesses.<span>  </span>And their website is clean and easy on the eyes (unlike some other small biz blogs). </span><span> </span></p> <h2><span>Business Development</span></h2> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank">ACT</a> is still the number one contact management software tool, given how robust but simple it is to use. </span></p> <p><span><a href="" target="_blank"></a> allows you to get anyone's email address fast!<span>  </span>Just go to, sign up (you cannot use has to be a work email address), the software plugs into your Chrome browser and when you are on a site, just click the icon and emails show up.<span>  </span></span></p> <p><span>And finally, when you are feeling down and you need a hug, just go to <a href="" target="_blank">The Nicest Place On the Internet</a>.<span>  </span></span></p> <p> </p> <p> </p></div> <div class="bottom-links"> <div class="field--taxonomy-terms clearfix field field--name-field-blog-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-above"> <div class="field__label">Post Tags</div> <div class="field__items"> <div class="field-item--taxonomy-term field__item"><a href="/taxonomy/term/76" class="taxonomy-term" hreflang="en">Small Biz Advice</a></div> </div> </div> </div> </div> </div> Sun, 23 Apr 2017 11:25:31 +0000 Jeff 452 at