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Internet Marketing Tactics, Tips and Reviews by Henry Zeng http://henryzeng.com Work less & get paid more. Discover the best kept Internet Marketing secrets and proven tips, tricks and tactics to make a full time living online. Wed, 21 Nov 2012 06:57:43 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.8.1 3 Mysteries of Email Open Rates – EXPOSED! http://henryzeng.com/3-mysteries-of-email-open-rates-exposed/ http://henryzeng.com/3-mysteries-of-email-open-rates-exposed/#respond Wed, 21 Nov 2012 06:57:43 +0000 http://henryzeng.com/?p=467 Whenever you distribute emails to your subscribers, a fraction of them will get delivered, some recipients will cancel their subscription, some will open your email message and read it, and few will even take the next step and click on a link within it or take other action.

If you use an email delivery service like Aweber or Get Response or Imnica to handle your mailing list, then you will be able to access this data at the click of a link. Your report will include information such as the number of emails sent, bounces, opt-outs, opens and clicks.

Open rates are expressed in terms of a percentage of the total number of emails that were delivered to recipients. If you sent out 500 emails, and 5 of them bounced, then 495 got delivered. Of these, if 155 were opened, then your email open rate is 155/495 or 31.3%

But what exactly do we mean by “opening” email?

What Do You Mean By Email Open Rates?

Email open rates are measured by tracking systems implemented by the email service you use to distribute your messages. Typically what happens is that the service will automatically insert a small transparent GIF (an invisible “tracking image”) into your email message.

Now, when the service sends out your email and it arrives in your subscriber’s inbox, your reader will view it using an email client such as Outlook Express or Eudora or a Web-based email program. When the email message is opened, the tracking image is also displayed – even though it isn’t visible to the recipient.

The email client program sends a request to the email service for the image. This is monitored by the service, which now knows that the recipient has received the email and opened it. It records this “hit” as an “open”.

Every single message distributed by the email service will get its own unique tracking image, which allows the service to provide very granular reporting on which email addresses received and opened your message.

But does open rate mean your email got read?

How Emails Can Be Opened – But Remain Unread!

As we’ve seen just now, the moment your recipient’s email client triggers a request for the tracking pixel (image), the data is logged in your account as an “open”. But this does not mean your email was read, or even viewed by a person!

All that you can say from this information is that your email made its way into your subscriber’s inbox, and was acted upon by the email client in a way that triggered a pixel request.

It could simply mean that your subscriber has their ’email preview’ preferences turned on. This is means whenever the SUBJECT line of your message is highlighted, the message shows up as a preview in a separate pane or tab – where it may or may not be viewed. Your subscriber may just be manually scrolling down a list of emails, and hitting DELETE after glancing at the headline!

Yet your email service will record this as an “open”.

And then, paradoxically enough, we have the reverse!

Your Emails May Be Read – But Not Show As Opened

Bizarre as it sounds, this happens because your email service can only track a message as opened if it receives a request for the tracking pixel.

Because the code for the tracking pixel image is in HTML code, this will only apply to emails sent and received in HTML format. If your email is viewed on a client program set to only display text versions, such as the default setting is on many mobile devices, the subscriber’s machine may not request the image at all – even though the recipient reads your email, and maybe even takes action based on it.

Many email programs are set to not display tracking images by default. This means the email message you sent is shown on the recipient’s screen – but your tracking pixel is not loaded, which means your email service will not count it as an “open”.

How Email Open Rates Are Calculated

We’ve looked at potential errors in how email opens are counted. Things get murkier when we talk about open rates – because these are presented as a percentage, and knowing exactly what’s being measured matters.

Some services report email open rates as a percentage of all emails that were successfully delivered to recipients. But some report it as a fraction of the total number of emails sent!

Now, if you have a significant “bounce” rate which affects the number of emails you were able to deliver, your email open rates will be further skewed by what metric is used by your service.

And that’s not all.

Some services count unique opens. So if a recipient opens and reads the same message repeatedly, it is only counted as one open. But others may count each incident as an “open”, misleading email marketers like you to incorrect conclusions.

As all this information shows, email open rates aren’t simplistic or very accurate. They are indicative metrics that give you a fair overview of the efficacy of your email marketing. We will see how exactly you can analyze email open rates to derive useful information about your email marketing efforts in another article.

About the Author:

Dr.Mani is a heart surgeon, Internet infopreneur and social entrepreneur. This article is one of his 4-part series on email marketing. You can read the others that explore email open rates in greater detail on his infopreneur blog.строителство на къщи

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Forget Email and Go Mobile! http://henryzeng.com/forget-email-go-mobile/ http://henryzeng.com/forget-email-go-mobile/#comments Sun, 29 Jan 2012 03:52:21 +0000 http://henryzeng.com/?p=455 You need to be actively acquiring your customers’ mobile numbers. Don’t just sit on those numbers either, you need to be marketing to them right now.

Why? Well, because email is dying. Albeit slowly.

Email is, of course, a worthwhile marketing tactic, but the fact is that young people (18-24) just don’t use email. They perceive email as ‘too slow’ and they aren’t used to the non-instant format of the internal email system. A report on the BBC shows just how profound this change in behaviour is. The CEO of Atos is actively working on banning internal company email.

Mobile numbers are highly coveted by businesses precisely because they are so protected by customers.

We treat our mobiles better than most pets. We sleep next to them and we carry them everywhere. And that is exactly why we are protective of our numbers. They are precious to us; enshrined in law that mobile operators must allow us to take our numbers with us if we change network.

According to the Guardian, smartphones now account for more than 50% of phone sales in Europe. Yet, even though smartphone web browsers show your existing landing pages, there’s still reason to have a direct relationship with your customer’s phone via SMS. It’s the only ‘app’ that is accessible to virtually all mobile handsets in the world.

mobile marketing

Build Your Mobile List

Gathering mobile information on the back of an active email list is a great way to begin adding numbers to your database. Send out a mobile opt-in message to your email asking your customers to add their mobile number to their profiles to receive updates, discounts or news via SMS. Add a mobile number to your sign up form to get new prospects sharing their mobile information with you.

Hotels are already doing this by sending confirmation messages via opted-in SMS messages. They even include sat nav coordinates to plug right into a smartphone.

Remember, once you have permission to send offers or information to a mobile, you have a deeper relationship with your customer. So do as the hotels are doing, and don’t over-send these messages. Keep it at the transaction or reminder level, then only send offers occasionally.

Another way to build your list is to offer specific services via mobile and SMS that make sense to a mobile customer. Personal services such as reminders for appointments or services that support a cross-device experience. One example I often use to explain this is that of a dieting site with an ebook of weight-loss tips. On the sign up form to download the ebook, a valuable service-oriented offer could be to “add your mobile number and receive daily encouragement by SMS.”

Purchasing Mobile Numbers

This should really only be considered by experienced mobile marketers, but it is possible to buy batches of numbers from others who run co-registration via CPA offers and segment the list by interest. Be careful who you deal with however, or you can get stung by the anti-spam laws.

Mobile is very very personal, so getting a mobile number is definitely harder than getting an email address. But it’s worth it and as people become more comfortable with SMS messages from businesses – relevant messages – they will be more willing to share their personal information.

Offers and calls-to-action

SMS marketing offers an easy way to share a brief message to pique interest and then drive mobile users to a mobile-optimised web page.

Even if you are specifically targeting smartphones, optimisation is still a concern. Smartphone web browsers are capable of displaying webpages, but the experience is broken and the user will need to zoom and pinch their way around your site. Which is annoying more than difficult. Optimising the site design ensures the most appropriate messages are presented to the mobile user first.

Alternatively, providing a phone number in your SMS text messages is an easy way to get a response.  All most users have to do is press the ‘dial’ button from the SMS to get access to the response number you send.

Sending Bulk SMS Texts

Mobile marketing has taken a note from the email marketing providers and offer many desktop tools to compose, send, respond to and analyse mobile campaigns. You’re not going to have to tap little phone keypads.

These tools help you to manage thousands of SMS messages, build and segment your lists, create auto-responses, interpret reply message like YES confirmations and STOP messages for unsubscribes.

The best providers in the market integrate your mobile number database right into your web sign up forms through an SMS API. They will also ensure directly connection to any of the global mobile networks, often at the same competitive rates.

Even someone with no experience at all in creating offers, campaigns and marketing can easily make the leap to mobile marketing. It is fast becoming one of the most valuable outbound marketing activities available to marketers.художник на икониИкони на светциХудожникОткъде да купя иконаидея за подаръкsondajiсондажи

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The Biggest Danger In Search Engine Optimization http://henryzeng.com/biggest-danger-in-seo/ http://henryzeng.com/biggest-danger-in-seo/#comments Sun, 04 Dec 2011 12:19:41 +0000 http://henryzeng.com/?p=441 Every webmaster and online business owner understands the benefits of search engine optimization. One of the most effective and least expensive marketing tactics that can deliver a high volume of targeted traffic is to get your website ranked in the top 3 slots on search engines like Google and Bing.

Few, however, realize that there are also dangers and risks hidden in SEO. Most are trivial or short-lived. Others can be more serious. And very few have the potential to cripple your entire search strategy.

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is the art and craft of making your website more likely and suitable for ranking high on search engine results pages (SERPs) through a combination of on-page and off-page factors. It is logical, therefore, that good SEO doesn’t happen by magic or through accident. It involves an investment of time and/or money into getting things right.

And in that statement lies the seed of the biggest danger in SEO.

Your website ranks on search engines for specific terms or phrases called keywords. For instance, if your website is about dog training, then it will probably rank on search results for terms like “dog training”, “dog obedience”, “potty training puppies” and so on. The phrases for which your site ranks will depend upon how frequently and in what context they are found on your web page (on-page SEO) as well as their presence in the anchor text of incoming links to your page, and the relevance or authority of the page hosting those links (off-page SEO).

So what could be dangerous about that? After all, isn’t SEO all about optimizing these things so that your site ranks high?

Yes, it is. But that’s not all that good SEO is about. The very best SEO strategists work hard to ensure that your website ranks high for the CORRECT search terms or keywords – so that the traffic you receive from organic search results is relevant and of the right kind.

Let’s pause to think about that for a moment. Say you’re building an online store to sell Nike trainer shoes. You may decide that athletes, fitness enthusiasts and joggers are your ideal market, and optimize your SEO and ranking efforts to secure the top slot on search engines for these terms.

Your smarter competitor, on the other hand, realizes that those using search terms like “trainer shoes” or “fitness” or “jogging footwear” are only in the researching phase of their purchase – and decides to target prospects further along the ‘buying cycle’. He will then optimize his web pages for terms like “Nike Men Downshifter 4 MSL” or “Air Jordan 2011 A Flight” or “Nike Lebron 9 iD”.

What’s the difference?

While your website may well receive a flood of visitors, and even provide them with useful information about which Nike sneakers are best for them, your competitor will be simply place purchasing options in front of prospects who are already convinced they need a specific model of shoes – and are ready and eager to buy it right now!

By picking the wrong terms to optimize your website or blog or online store, you may be leaving thousands of dollars on the table. That’s scary.

And it gets scarier still when you understand that going after mere search phrases based on product models or brand names is far less effective than digging deeper to understand the mind of your prospective buyer.

When you know how your prospect feels, thinks and dreams, and can identify the emotions, passions and desires that fire audiences in your market, you will have made a significant paradigm shift in your SEO efforts. You will then be able to intelligently target a different set of keywords (often without much competition), rank high for those terms, and then engage your visitors who arrive through those searches in a more meaningful fashion that converts them easily into buyers.

The biggest danger in SEO is missing out on this powerful approach. The best optimized web page will fail if it is targeting the wrong search phrases and therefore attracting the wrong kind of visitor to your site.

About the Author:

Dr.Mani, author of “Think, Write & Retire” is a heart surgeon, Internet infopreneur and social entrepreneur. Pick up his free ‘Infopreneur HOTSHEET’ and learn more about information marketing at Information Marketing.ikoni

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Tips for Multilingual Keyword Research http://henryzeng.com/multilingual-keyword-research/ http://henryzeng.com/multilingual-keyword-research/#comments Sat, 20 Aug 2011 08:23:06 +0000 http://henryzeng.com/?p=429 Multilingual Keyword ResearchAsk any seasoned SEO, and they will tell you of the sleepless nights they’ve had trying to outwit Google’s ever-changing search algorithms. Finding the right keywords and optimizing a website is an uphill battle, especially with the advent of social media, which requires the constant production of fresh content and perpetual engagement on all social media fronts.

Throw the need to reach multilingual audiences in the mix, and you’ll see why reaching the top Google search spot seems like a distant dream. That may be the case with the heavily saturated English web but not necessarily so if you look at the foreign language internet. With less content and less competition for keywords, reaching the top of the search engine rankings is well within the reach of savvy e-marketers daring to look beyond borders.

As the prevalent majority of netizens prefer browsing in their native tongue (Common Sense Advisory’s “Can’t Read, Won’t Buy” report), digital marketers should embrace a multilingual approach if they wish to spread their message across cultures. But how do you get traffic to your website from abroad?

The good news is that multilingual e-marketing is not rocket science, and it doesn’t take much to tap into the tremendous opportunities that emerging markets present.

Here’s how to achieve this…

Localize your keyword research

If you’re not new to SEO, you’ve probably honed your optimization skills while brainstorming keywords for websites in English. So the natural first step would be to simply translate your keywords into the respective target language. Unfortunately, literal keyword rendition rarely works: just like languages and social conventions, search habits vary across cultures and there are numerous search quirks to be considered.  Even countries sharing the same language will need localized keywords that will match local intricacies of expression.

To nip any cultural faux pas in the bud and be culturally and linguistically appropriate, you should seek the help of in-country native-speaking marketers: they will be aware of local search particularities and be naturally switched on about linguistic subtleties that are so important for identifying the right keywords.

Beware of the temptation to use online dictionaries or automated translation software when researching keywords. One mistranslation or wrongly identified keyword, and your website will be impossible to find.

Put terms to the test

So, you’ve now identified potential keywords in different languages with the help of professional translators or native-speaking marketers, but still need to fine-tune them before applying them to your web content.

The best keyword analysis tool is Google AdWords; just type in your suggested term to see how many people have searched for it and how likely it is that it will drive traffic to your website. While Google hogs the search engine market in Europe and the US, however, you should not forget other local search engines that are more prominent in certain countries, such as  Yandex in Russia and Baidu in China. All it takes is some meticulous research to identify the search engines of choice in your target markets.

Fine-tune keywords

Once you have identified, selected and analyzed the foreign language keywords, it’s time to see them in action. Incorporate them into your web content in an inconspicuous way and see how they perform.

To measure the performance of keywords and see which ones drive the most traffic to your website, you can use tools such as Google Analytics. If some keywords don’t yield conversions, you can leave them out altogether. Similarly, you might want to play around with others which you think might perform better.

Don’t be afraid to tweak words and phrases if necessary: after all, it’s the positioning of your website that is at stake. Monitor the performance of your multilingual keyword campaign, constantly refine your keywords and you’ll soon find your website at the top of search engine rankings.

 

Author Box

Christian Arno is the founder and Managing Director Lingo24, global provider of translation, website localization and multilingual marketing services. Launched in 2001, Lingo24 now has 160 employees and clients in more than sixty countries. In the past twelve months, they have translated over sixty million words for businesses in every industry sector. Follow Christian (@l24ca) and Lingo24 (@Lingo24) on Twitter.иконииконописikoniсвети георги

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5 Time Management Tips To Boost Your Online Profits http://henryzeng.com/5-time-management-tips/ http://henryzeng.com/5-time-management-tips/#comments Tue, 26 Apr 2011 03:47:39 +0000 http://henryzeng.com/?p=412 This is actually an email interview with Matt Poc. Mat is a loyal reader of my blog (big thanks!)

In this post, I will answer 5 time management questions which will make your online marketing venture more profitable.

How do you stay focused?

To stay focused, you need to create a quiet workspace with no interruption.

If you work at home, clear your work time with your spouse and kids. Tell them do not disturb your when you are working. Tell them you are working, you are doing your own business. Your family needs to know that when you are behind closed doors, it’s all business.

And if you just can’t find the space, then you might consider working on your online business after everyone goes to bed. Yes, you’ll lose some sleep some nights, but you can set it up so that you only have late work nights once or twice a week.

How do you stay disciplined?

When you are at work, stay away from email, Skype, Facebook or forums until your task is done.

Simply putting a deadline on every worthwhile action, and force yourself to follow the discipline to adhere to the deadlines.

The best way to inspire yourself to work is to set rewards for good work or finished projects.

So once all your items on your list are crossed off, reward yourself a small but tangible reward. Play games on the Facebook; chat with your friends; take a walk and eat your favorite food. But limit that time to 15-20 minutes at most

How do you plan your time?

Personally, I have a “loose” structure for time management -In other words, I am not the robot type because it does not work for me. I don’t work that much, I take hell a lot of time for entertainment with my friends and family.
But some people DO need to have everything planned out in order to get things done. Depending on what type you are, you can plan your time accordingly.

When it comes to time management, what mistakes do you think people make?

The biggest time management mistake for most people is that they are wasting too much time on non-profitable activities.

If you spend 3 hours every day simply reading discussion boards, checking emails or your affiliate earnings, that is an action. However, it’s just not the right action. It isn’t going to be profitable action.

Here are some common non-profitable activities people are doing:
•  Perfecting site layouts
•  Chatting on Facebook / Twitter / forums etc.
•  Reading  tons of blog posts
•  Buying lots of money-making courses
•  Checking emails
•  Checking affiliate earnings every 15 minutes

Sometimes, those most profitable actions are those with low importance, like writing email broadcasts, writing content for your authority sites, and creating content for your products.

However, they are the activities that will bring you the most subscribers, most money and best results.

What do you think is the most important element in time management?

The MOST important thing when it comes to time management is to do your MOST profitable things as early as possible to make SURE they are done in the day. For example, if mailing your list makes you $500/day, make sure you send that email broadcast out no matter what. THEN do the other things you need to do.

There are a few things that make most of your profit and MANY things that make little or no profit like replying emails, writing articles. Just do the profitable things early every day without miss. When you start seeing more profits coming in, you’ll be more motivated.?????ikoniИкониПодаръциikoniикониикониПравославни икониикони на светци

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The Four Pillars of Successful Products http://henryzeng.com/4-pillars-successful-products/ http://henryzeng.com/4-pillars-successful-products/#comments Sun, 06 Mar 2011 03:54:30 +0000 http://henryzeng.com/?p=397

Product creation can be a difficult and confusing process for many entrepreneurs, however, by realizing what makes products successful, we can better ensure our own success. In this post, I’m going to share the four pillars that almost all successful products have in common.

1. Balance

Good product execution depends on balance. Getting this right can mean being number one in your niche; getting it wrong can mean failure. Balance involves making all of the aspects of your product equally good.

There’s a reason why the Honda Civic has been one of the top-selling vehicles here for the past 15 years or so. It’s because it’s so perfectly balanced in so many areas – from driving dynamics, to fuel economy, to price.

Employing Honda’s formula to success is simple: balance your efforts equally across the board. Don’t spend all of your time and money developing an incredible product without putting equal effort into writing a
good sales copy and generating traffic. Doing so ensures that almost nobody will and your product, and the few people that do will be turned-off by a mediocre sales page.

At the same time, don’t spend all your time writing a great sales copy or generating server-crushing traffic without putting the same effort into developing a killer product. Neglecting your product will result in a high rate of refunds, which is almost worse than making no sales at all.

2. Functionality

Quick and shallow success can be built on flash and style, alone. However, if you’re looking to build lasting success, your product needs to be functional, first and foremost.

One of the many factors that set the original iPod apart from its competitors was its uncanny level of usability. It’s minimalistic design made it easy to know which buttons to press, right out of the box, and its straightforward
menus put apple on the map for intuitive user experiences. Finally, it’s simple design proved robust and functional for a wide variety of different customers.

If we can learn a thing or two from the iPod, it’s that functionality trumps features. What the iPod and most other Apple products lack in pure technical superiority and features, they more than make up for in end user experience.

Often, products that attempt to be a jack of all trades end up doing nothing extraordinarily well. Conversely, products made to serve a clear purpose do a single task incredibly well, and become the product of choice for a select audience.

In your business, try not to develop products whose purpose gets lost in their list of features. Instead, build products that do one thing remarkably well.

3. Perceived Value

Many would argue that price is a key factor in the success of a product. Not so. When we look at products across an entire spectrum of niches, we see that it’s not the product’s price that matters; it’s the products perceived value.

Think about this: in almost every market there are fundamentally similar products with very different price points. From premium paints, to premium appliances to premium clothing, these “premium” products have shown entrepreneurs that people are willing to pay huge premiums for products with a higher perceived value.

Perceived value is 25% features, 25% reputation and 50% price. Frank Kern, one of the most revered figures in internet marketing, believes that two characteristics; speed and greater level of personal service, will result in the ability to charge more for a product.

On the other hand, maintaining a high perceived value is dependent on static prices. The reason Lacoste has maintained its high level of perceived value in the clothing industry is because its prices haven’t wavered over the years.

4. Marketability

Marketability, in essence, is your product’s draw-factor; the ability to generate sales without the use of marketing. A well conceived product with just enough market awareness can literally sell itself if it has the right level of marketability.

The question is; what distinguishes a product as being marketable? The truth is, a lot of a product’s marketability and market appeal has to do with its overall level of originality. Developing a successful product often means bringing something new to the table. The clothing market is highly saturated with jeans. A new jeans brand, for example, would probably have huge difficulty breaking into such a competitive market.

However, if someone were to bring something completely new to the clothing market, say edible yoga pants woven from ethically-sourced soy root, might have some traction. It’s a product’s uniqueness that sets it apart and allows it the possibility to sell itself without marketing.

This is a guest post by Cameron Langdon from LaunchPressThemed.com.

The author, Cameron Langdon, is a veteran internet marketer who has made LaunchPress, a free WordPress theme for internet marketers available at LaunchPressTheme.com

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