Weekend Favs February 27

Weekend Favs February 27 written by John Jantsch read more at Duct Tape Marketing

My weekend blog post routine includes posting links to a handful of tools or great content I ran across during the week.

I don’t go into depth about the finds, but encourage you to check them out if they sound interesting. The photo in the post is a favorite for the week from an online source or one that I took out there on the road.

  • GPT-3 Demo– GPT-3 is the world’s most sophisticated natural language technology. Discover how companies are implementing the OpenAI GPT-3 API to power new use cases.
  • AddEvent -Add to Calendar and event tools for websites and newsletters. Event with RSVP. Use in email campaigns, MailChimp, Marketo. Used by Google, Microsoft, Salesforce, HubSpot.
  • Type Studio – Type Studio translates your videos into many different languages. The video translation runs online in your browser with over 240 translation possibilities.

These are my weekend favs, I would love to hear about some of yours – Tweet me @ducttape

9 Smart Apps to Stay Connected with Your Team and Coworkers

9 Smart Apps to Stay Connected with Your Team and Coworkers written by Guest Post read more at Duct Tape Marketing

Editor’s note: This post was originally published in July 2017 and has been revamped and updated for accuracy and comprehensiveness.

There’s been a massive transition to remote work in the last few years — especially in the last 12 months. The quick shift from in-person to virtual has pushed us to learn how to connect with our team and coworkers online.

Whether you’re in the office or online, effective communication is the key component to working together successfully. If you don’t communicate, how do you resolve problems and achieve your goals? 

“Alone we can do so little; together we can do so much.” – Helen Keller

Luckily for us, today there are so many applications that can help you optimize your team’s communication, workflow, project management, and more.

In this article, you’ll find 9 smart tools and apps to help you stay in touch with and work effectively with your team, no matter where they are.

1. Zoom

zoom dashboard

It’s safe to say that virtual meetings aren’t going anywhere anytime soon. The beauty of a virtual meeting is that you can join from essentially anywhere in the world – as long as there’s an internet connection.

Zoom takes the cake for being one of the best group meeting apps. Zoom is incredibly easy to use, has high-quality video, integrates with tons of other apps, and can record your sessions for anyone who wasn’t able to make the meeting. 

Not only is Zoom great for meetings, but it also has other solutions like Zoom Video webinars, Zoom Room, and Zoom Phone.

For solopreneurs and small businesses just starting out, Zoom has a forever-free plan with unlimited one-on-one meetings. There are three levels of paid plans: Pro, Business, and Zoom United Business.

If you haven’t already, give Zoom a try for your next meeting.

2. Slack

Slack is one of the best apps for communication and collaboration. As their tagline says: Where Work Happens.

Slack is a fit for businesses of any size. There are channels that you can create to keep your work organized. You can create a private channel for a particular project or team, as well as a public channel for everyone to view. Slack also allows you to send direct messages to a group or a particular person. Not only can you use Slack for your business, but you can create shared channels to communicate with other vendors or businesses that you work with who also use Slack.

It isn’t just a messaging platform, it also supports voice and video calls. You can share your files, images, folders, and documents with anyone at any time from anywhere. Slack has these three plans: Free, Standard, Plus, and Enterprise Grid. 

Try Slack to make communication easy and improve your team productivity.

3. Asana

Asana is a great app for collaboration and productivity. It has a clear interface, it’s easy to understand, and the functions are simple.

It allows you to create a team, track the team, and manage your important projects. You can see the status of any ongoing project without sending an email.

You can easily create tasks and assign one to a team member. You can use their Free basic version. With a Free account, you’ll get a basic dashboard where you can add up to 15 team members, create unlimited tasks, projects, and conversations.

Try Asana. You’ll love its simplicity and how it creates transparency among your team.

4. Calendly

Calendly is an automated scheduling software built to help you eliminate the back and forth of setting up any meeting of any kind. There are multiple types of meetings that Calendly works with like one-on-one meetings, round-robin scheduling, group meetings, and collective meetings.

The software integrates with many other apps and can connect with up to six of your calendars to automatically check availability and help you connect with your team, prospects, and clients.

Calendly has three pricing plans: Basic (always free), Premium, Pro.

Try Calendly to streamline your meeting scheduling process within your organization or with your clients. 

5. Harvest

Harvest is a modern time tracking tool that can help businesses of any kind track time. From consultancies to internal departments, you can plan and estimate projects with real data, manage your team’s capacity and workflow, and invoice seamlessly.

The platform is simple to use. You can track time from your desktop or mobile and integrate time tracking into your existing workflow. Harvest integrates with some of the great tools on this list like Asana and Slack.

There’s also a large selection of visual dashboards you can create that helps you keep your projects moving smoothly.

Try Harvest to make the most out of your time.

6. Google Meet

If your business is using Google Workspace, Google Meet is a great app that’s already integrated that you can use for secure video meetings for businesses of all sizes.

Google Meet takes the headaches out of joining a video call at work. All you have to do is just set up a meeting and share a link. There’s no worrying about whether teammates, clients, or customers have the right accounts or plug-ins. It makes multi-person video calls a breeze.

You can also join meetings directly from a Calendar event, an email, or directly from Gmail.

Work easier and give Google Meet a try.

7. Monday

Are you a busy team? Are you managing multiple clients?

Monday can help you with managing teams, clients, freelancers, and important projects. 

It will make it easy to track project status, prioritize tasks, add updates on projects, communicate with team members, create automations to streamline your processes, build visual dashboards, and so much more.

You can easily track who’s working on which task (or project) and assign the task to someone on your team. It also allows you to integrate your favorite apps and tools.

Try Monday and it will keep your team organized.

8. LastPass

LastPass homepage

LastPass makes sharing and managing passwords across team members easy. LastPass offers secure password storage giving employees their own vault for storing every app and web login they use. It allows you to easily share logins while keeping your data safe and revoke access if needed.

LastPass has multiple solutions and plans to choose from. There are two plans for businesses – the Teams or Enterprise. This is great for businesses managing multiple users. There are also two personal plans you can choose from – Free or Premium.

If you want smart password storage, convenient password sharing, and an easy-to-manage dashboard, give LastPass a try.

9. Basecamp

Basecamp homepage

Basecamp is a project management and communication app that helps you to organize your projects and teams in one place.

It allows you to break a project into multiple portions and assign it to your team members. The 6 core tools it provides are:

  • Group Chat: start a quick chat (or group chat) with your team.
  • Message Boards: Post important announcements, updates, and ideas.
  • To-dos: Make a list of work or tasks and track it.
  • Schedule: For posting deadlines and milestones.
  • Automatic Check-ins: Get insights from your team.
  • Docs & Files: Team members can access the files, documents, and folders.

Basecamp offers a free account for verified teachers and students. For businesses, it’s $99 per month. They also have a 30-day free trial.

Try Basecamp and organize everything you need in one place.

Thanks for reading this post! Now it’s your turn – which one is your favorite app? How do you communicate with your team? Let me know in the comments.

Making Brands More Human

Making Brands More Human written by John Jantsch read more at Duct Tape Marketing

Marketing Podcast with Jacqueline Lieberman

Headshot of Jacqueline Lieberman who was a guest on the Duct Tape Marketing PodcastIn this episode of the Duct Tape Marketing Podcast, I interview Jacqueline Lieberman. Jacqueline is the former Managing Partner and the Head of Strategy Story Worldwide and current founder of BrandCrudo.

Questions I ask Jacqueline Lieberman:

  • One of the things you’re talking about often is making brands more human and putting purpose into practice – can you talk about taking it beyond the tagline?
  • Some companies brand themselves in a way that has nothing to do with their product – like insurance companies for example. Is creating a brand personality an effective approach?
  • How do brands address the fact that there are so many channels to reach consumers that are in a lot of ways are out of their full control?
  • What’s generally going on when a business calls in an outside brand strategist, what’s your process, and then what do you do to try to turn the ship?
  • What role does internal politics play in bigger companies when it comes to branding?
  • How often do you get the chance to go deeper than marketing?
  • Do you have any examples where typical gaps happen and there’s no internal communication that is creating a bad experience?
  • 2021 is still going to be a year where people are reeling from 2020. Is there a message of trends, behaviors, or things that people need to be aware of?

More About Jacqueline Lieberman:

Like this show? Click on over and give us a review on iTunes, please!

 

How to Fully Optimize Your Google My Business Listing

How to Fully Optimize Your Google My Business Listing written by John Jantsch read more at Duct Tape Marketing

Marketing Podcast with Sherry Bonelli

Headshot of Sherry Bonelli who is a guest on the Duct Tape Marketing PodcastIn this episode of the Duct Tape Marketing Podcast, I interview Sherry Bonelli. Sherry is the owner of Early Bird Digital Marketing. She writes on all things SEO for Search Engine Land, MOZ, Search Engine Journal, SEMrush, BrightLocal, SCORE, and others.

Questions I ask Sherry Bonelli:

  • Does Google My Business have any value for national brands that don’t have a local office?
  • Who is Google My Business really meant for and who needs to have it?
  • How do I get the most out of my Google My Business Listing?
  • In most cases, there are only three listings that show up in search. How do I get my listing to show up in that three-pack?
  • Let’s say I’m a business with a physical location, but I want to let everybody know that I can travel 25 miles to come to service you (for example, a waterproofing or plumbing company) – do I want a service area business, or do I want to use the local business address?
  • From an SEO standpoint, is there a better approach to show up in more map listings for places like the suburbs?
  • How much review spam is Google trying to fight?
  • What’s the best way to respond to a negative review? Should you respond?
  • What do we do about reviews that come from people who aren’t really customers – maybe they’re a competitor or someone who has too much time on their hands?
  • What’s the best reach Google My Business support right now?
  • What do you know about any new features coming in the future for Google My Business?

More About Sherry Bonelli:

 

Like this show? Click on over and give us a review on iTunes, please!

 

Helping the Underdogs Rise Through Local SEO with Justin Sturges

Helping the Underdogs Rise Through Local SEO with Justin Sturges written by Sara Nay read more at Duct Tape Marketing

 

 

Agency Spark Podcast with Justin Sturges 

Headshot of Justin Sturges who is a guest on the Agency Spark PodcastThe Agency Spark Podcast, hosted by Sara Nay, is a collection of interviews from thought leaders in the marketing consultancy and agency space. Each episode is designed to spark ideas you can put into practice for your agency today.

In this episode, Sara interviews Justin Sturges. Justin is an award-winning author on the topic of local lead generation and is the go-to guy for local SEO in the Duct Tape Marketing Network. He runs local SEO trainings and provides services to a variety of local service-based businesses across the country.

Questions Sara asks Justin Sturges:

  • What inspired your recent move to Mexico?
  • Did you have any fear in terms of how moving to Mexico would impact your business?
  • How was it transitioning from the corporate world to establishing your own agency?
  • What draws you to working with the ‘underdog’ businesses of the world?
  • What are some examples of different systems, processes, and automations that you’ve put in place that directly relate to local SEO?
  • What’s the first step that someone should take when they’re just getting started with documenting their systems and processes?
  • What should a small business with a somewhat limited budget focus on as their key priorities when it comes to local SEO?
  • What are the most important results that a small, service-based business owner should be focusing on?
  • What do you know now that you wish you would’ve known when you first started your agency in 2001?

Where you can learn more about Justin Sturges:

Weekend Favs February 20

Weekend Favs February 20 written by John Jantsch read more at Duct Tape Marketing

My weekend blog post routine includes posting links to a handful of tools or great content I ran across during the week.

I don’t go into depth about the finds, but encourage you to check them out if they sound interesting. The photo in the post is a favorite for the week from an online source or one that I took out there on the road.

  • Tripetto– Make quizzes, order forms, exams and more with no-code calculations. All without any coding in Tripetto’s calculator block.
  • Hugo -Centralized, actionable meeting notes app. Manage notes, agendas, and tasks with your team. 20 work app integrations.
  • Julian – Learn how to write and design advanced landing pages that compel people to convert. Featuring landing page examples and optimization best practices.

These are my weekend favs, I would love to hear about some of yours – Tweet me @ducttape

6 Easy Ways to Optimize Your Facebook Business Page in 2021

6 Easy Ways to Optimize Your Facebook Business Page in 2021 written by John Jantsch read more at Duct Tape Marketing

With over 2 billion users on Facebook (and still climbing), Facebook should continue to be part of your overall marketing strategy to engage with current customers and reach new audiences.

It seems as if there’s always some new feature on Facebook to conquer. So whether you have a well-established Page or you’re just starting, follow this list to optimize your profile to get the best results for your business in 2021.

1. Add a strong Call to Action button

A strong call-to-action button on your Facebook business Page is imperative. The bright blue button is the primary means of driving some sort of action on your Page. This can include sending traffic to your website, direct messages, signups, and more. This appears right below your cover photo. 

Facebook cover photo

You choose what action you’d like visitors to take based on what you think is best for your business. For example, if you’re a dentist’s office, your CTA might be to ‘Book Now’ or ‘Call Now’ to make an appointment versus a ‘Shop Now’ button. Today, there’s a long list of options to choose from – so if multiple CTAs apply to your business, you have the opportunity to experiment with the options available to see what works most effectively. 

Facebook Business Page CTAs

2. Fill out your Facebook Business Page profile in detail

This is a simple step. But it’s something businesses can neglect to take full advantage of. A completely filled-out profile sends the message to your audience that you’re engaged. There are a ton of sections where you can add more information about your business. Here are a few:

  • Description/About
  • Location
  • Contact details (include your phone number and email)
  • Website address
  • Other social media accounts (Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, etc.)
  • Hours of operation

Social media is a place where people go to understand who you are as a business and gain trust. Consistency across all of your social media channels is crucial, along with keeping your information accurate and up to date.

3. Utilize Facebook Messenger

Giving your visitors and customers an easy way to communicate with you gives you a competitive advantage. Messenger is a great way to enhance the user experience on your Page and showcase how well your business provides quality service. Speed is imperative today – setting up automatic messages with Messenger can go a long way. A few options you can do are:

  • Set up a welcome greeting when someone begins a conversation with your Page
  • Create and save frequently used replies
  • Turn away messages during your out of office hours

Setting up Facebook Messenger for your business page

4. Encourage your customers to leave reviews

Social proof is so important. Think about it – how often do you buy from, let’s say, an Amazon seller with zero reviews? How often do you buy from anywhere that has no reviews? Likely less often. And even so, when you do buy from someone with few reviews or social proof, there’s a lot more hesitation and time needed for consideration.

Encouraging your existing customers to leave reviews on your Facebook Page gives you the opportunity to engage in conversation with existing customers and builds an additional layer of trust with new audiences.

5. Choose or update your Page template so that it is in line with your business goals

A few years ago, Facebook launched templates for business Pages. This is a feature that offers a variety of Page layouts that you can choose from to best suit your specific business.

There are ten options for you to choose from. You can change your template under the ‘Templates and Tabs’ section in your Page settings.  The template you choose determines the order in which your sections appear with the timeline feed and tabs. When you’re deciding which template to use, consider what the goal of your business is. 

6. Experiment with different types of featured cover photos

Your Page cover photo is a digital sign for your business. It’s the first thing people see when they visit your Page. It’s your first “conversation” with your customers, and it can have many uses.

You can use it to showcase a new product or service, announce an upcoming event, promote an upcoming book release, direct users to take action, the list goes on. Your business Page serves a purpose – so when you’re thinking about a cover photo, factor in what your business goals are so that you create something with purpose as opposed to just an aesthetically appealing image.

Not only can you upload a still cover image, but you can now experiment with different creative types like video or a slide show.

With Facebook being the widest-reaching social network around, there’s no doubt your potential customers are visiting your Page. Ensuring your business Page is optimized is something that you can’t afford not to do, and it’s a great opportunity for your business to make a lasting first impression. Go through this list with your Page and optimize where you can.

Using Video at Every Stage of The Customer Journey

Using Video at Every Stage of The Customer Journey written by John Jantsch read more at Duct Tape Marketing

Marketing Podcast with Ben Oliver

Headshot of Ben Oliver who is the guest on the Duct Tape Marketing podcastIn this episode of the Duct Tape Marketing Podcast, I interview Ben Oliver. Ben is a co-founder and executive producer of Storyboard Media, a B2B marketing, and video production firm in North Carolina.

Questions I Ask Ben Oliver:

  • You believe video is more than just another form of content. Can you expand on what you mean by this?
  • Can you make a case for the fact that there are people who prefer to consume content differently (read, listen, watch)? And do we need to be catering to all three of those?
  • Why can’t you just turn on the camera and produce videos so that you can post them to all channels?
  • How do you marry video or types of video to the different stages of the customer journey?
  • Is there a formula to hook people at the beginning of the video in order to get them to consume the whole video?
  • What are some of the best pieces of advice for a new product or campaign that you’re trying to run, and how do you amplify those videos?
  • What are some of the really out-of-the-box ways that you see or places that you see people using video that most people just aren’t considering?

More About Ben Oliver:

 

Like this show? Click on over and give us a review on iTunes, please!

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