Syndication ServicesAdvertise HereWordPress ThemesMake Money Online

Which eLearning Platform Is Best: Podia, Kajabi or WP Courseware

Running an online course business can be overwhelming. 

Not only do you need to spend serious time creating your content, but you also have to deal with website creation, marketing, and student relations — all of which can be complicated and taxing on resources.

That is why, as an aspiring online course business owner, you need to have an air-tight eLearning platform to house your business.

(Image Source: Pixabay) 

With the right platform, the technical side of things “just work.” You’re able to focus on creating quality courses, marketing your online courses smartly, and managing your audience — all without you having to spend countless hours tinkering with integrations or dashboard settings.

While there are plenty of platforms available on the internet, in this guide, we’re going to focus on three of the top ones: 

All three of these are great options, but which one will work wonders for your business? 

User Interface 

As this is likely your first encounter with an eLearning platform, you’ll want an easy-to-use and intuitive user interface. 

There’s nothing more frustrating than using a convoluted, overloaded user interface that assumes you will know what to do.

Thankfully, most eLearning user interfaces are super straightforward drag-and-drop affairs. However, some require a little training before use, while others make starting your own online course a breeze. All three of the platforms we’re looking at today have done a great job of creating fairly intuitive back end tools. 

When compared to other eLearning platforms, they’ve really done a good job of making life easy for you, which is why they’re all so popular among people selling courses.

Are you ready to see more? 

Podia 

Podia’s dashboard is quite easy to understand. Near the top-right section, you can click the “New Product” button, so you can start creating your course.

Podia then guides you by showing a pop-up prompting you to choose between three options: Online Course, Digital Download or Product Bundle.

I clicked the “Online Course” option, added a sample title, and this is where the platform brought me.

As you can see, everything looks A-OK. You can clearly see the type of content you can add, and the product builder menu up top offers these options: Content, Setting, Pricing, Promote, Customers, and Comments. 

Kajabi 

When you first log in to Kajabi, you are met with an extremely clean interface.

The primary navigation menu is located on the left-hand side of the screen, with the most common destinations. 

The “Kajabi Assistant” search bar, pinned to the top of the screen, doesn’t disappear on you as you scroll down. If you can’t find what you’re looking for, just type it into the search bar and follow the results.

Your statistics concerning opt-in, sales, comments, and even new members are all available in one nice, easy-to-read location.

And, if you need a little help with the Kajabi website, course building, and/or navigation, the included guides can help answer all your questions (scroll down a bit to see them).

WP Courseware 

The interface here is a little different from Kajabi and most other eLearning platforms, as it is a self-hosted plugin that you use within your WordPress website.

Basically, that means WP Courseware isn’t an all-in-one solution that people can use to start an online course business. Their users need to have a WordPress website, and with that comes the cost of having to pay for themes, hosting, plugins, etc. — all of which can add up in the long run.

Once you’ve installed the WP Courseware plugin, you access it the same way you do other plugins inside of WordPress.

From there, you simply pick what you want to do, and start working from your selection. If you need help, you’ll need to go to a different website.

As far as the user interface is concerned, if you’re comfortable with WordPress, you’ll be comfortable with WP Courseware.

Building Your Own Course 

Now let’s get into the “meat and potatoes” of these three eLearning platforms.

While the user interface is important, what’s really important is how easy it is to create an online course for your audience.

Podia 

Podia offers an easy-to-use course builder. 

To create a course through Podia, you click on Products and select Add Product. Then they’ll ask you what you want to create, what you want to name it, and a brief description of the product and/or course.

After that, you’ll simply add your questions, videos, training materials, and so on, until you are happy with the product. Then you’ll give it a price and publish it so others can sign up for and/or purchase your course.

Kajabi 

Creating a course using Kajabi is particularly easy because of their built-in “blueprints.” These template-like frameworks help give you a starting point, so you don’t need to come up with a structure from scratch and can focus on designing a great online course by plugging content into the provided slots.

As you can see, the arrow is pointing to the pre-made blueprint for our online mini course. You can change any of these elements at any time, add more, and delete as needed. When you are finished, you can assign a price, as seen by the red arrow.

Kajabi makes light work out of large projects by including the blueprint feature.

WP Courseware 

The verbiage that the developers of WP Courseware use to label their features can be understood easily. If you’d like to create a module, there is an “Add Module” button. If you want to edit the description of your course, there’s a “Description” option in the “Course Settings” section. It doesn’t get easier than that.

What’s more, there are countless other things you can do within the platform to customize your courses, including:

  • Email delivery 
  • Setting up payment gateways 
  • Setting prerequisites to your modules 
  • Managing instructor profiles 
  • Building quizzes 

And because these features’ labels are very easy to understand, there isn’t much confusion on the user’s end when using the course builder.

Marketing 

Creating top-quality courses and a great website experience for students, is is just half of the battle that you need to win if you want to succeed at growing an online course business. The other half is marketing.

If your online courses are poorly marketed, your courses, no matter how value-packed they are, will only be ignored.

When you think about how there are millions of content items published daily, it isn’t hard to imagine that happening.

And so, let’s check out the three platforms and see what kind of marketing firepower each has to offer course merchants.

Podia 

The core marketing feature that Podia has is its email marketing engine. 

After clicking the “Emails” menu, Podia will give you two options to choose from. You can either do a drip campaign or send one-off emails.

I tried creating a drip campaign. This is how their interface looks. 

The feature is quite nifty and beautifully simple. And you can use it to send triggered emails, too, whereby a new sale or list subscription can set a message sequence into action.

Aside from its email marketing features, Podia doesn’t seem to have any other major marketing features that they’re offering to its users.

Kajabi 

Kajabi has quite a lot of marketing features that you can tap. These are the features listed in their platform: Pipelines, Email Campaigns, Automations, Events, Forms. 

Let’s dive into two of its principal marketing features: the Pipelines, and Email Campaigns.

Pipelines are funnels that you can create so you can customize and automate your customers’ sales journey by pre-making the funnel.

Here’s an example of a pipeline for sending freebies. 

Their Email Campaign feature, on the other hand, despite how effective a marketing tool it is, is very easy to use. Kajabi will prompt you to choose from two types of email campaigns: an email broadcast, or an email sequence.

I ticked Email Sequence and this is where it brought me. 

As you can see, the function is very easy to use. With this, you can start running your email marketing campaign without having to deal with an over-complicated and confusing interface.

Without going into all of the details, the other two modules work as follows. Forms allow you to create different versions of your lead capture mechanisms that will appear in different settings across your site, including your blog or landing pages, which can be focused around either specific products or specific timely promotions. And with Events, you can set up a webinar, or any other timely content delivery mechanism that is not monetized, allowing you to capture and nurture leads and maintain a healthy funnel flow.

By combining all of these features, you can create sophisticated set-it-and-forget-it marketing funnels that can bring you leads and sales 24/7.

WP Courseware 

WP Courseware doesn’t have much in the way of built-in marketing features to offer. 

On the other hand, because the plugin runs in WordPress, you’ll be able to market your online courses using other WordPress plugins. After all, this solution was never built to be an all-in-one.

The fact that there are countless WordPress plugins that can be installed to a WordPress site is a huge plus for people running an online course business using WP Courseware through WordPress.

So if you go with this type of solution, you’ll have a myriad of plugins to choose from when trying to market your courses. There are plugins designed to help WordPress website owners with SEO, social media marketing, email marketing, creating coupons, landing pages, analytics, and the list goes on. They don’t all work spectacularly together, and some trial-and-error tinkering is always involved, but your options will be virtually limitless.

Price for Value 

Of course, none of these eLearning platforms is free.  

So, what are the costs associated with each platform? And which one provides the most value per dollar when it comes to features?

Podia 

Podia offers two pricing tiers: $39 per month and $79 per month. Both are great options, but the $79 per month plans gives you access to embedded checkout options, affiliate tracking (big boost for sales) and even third-party tracking codes. 

It’s also worth pointing out that both their packages do not have any transaction fees.

You can view Podia’s pricing packages here.

Kajabi 

Kajabi has three pricing tiers: Basic for $119 per month, Growth for $159 per month, and Pro for $319 per month. The higher the tier you choose, the products you can create, admin users you can set, the more contacts you can add, etc.

A glaring aspect that Kajabi has over its competitors is its powerful marketing features. The platform’s capability to create a premade marketing funnel to automate a good bit of its users’ marketing campaigns is worth every dollar you spend. 

Considering how your marketing campaigns can make or break your online courses business, you need to have a platform that can give you the marketing oomph your business needs. For more information, here’s a link to Kajabi’s pricing page

WP Courseware 

WP Courseware offers just one service tier, but they price it differently for different numbers of website licenses. Teacher, for two plugin installs, costs $129; Professor, for ten, costs $149; and Guru, for 25, costs $199. 

While some eLearning merchants will want to build multi-site empires for resonating with different audiences, most are likely to want to start with one at a time, making the volume pricing less of a motivator. The fees are billed just once, but each license entitles the buyer to only one year of support and plugin updates.[Ritorno a capo del testo][Ritorno a capo del testo]Just remember that as discussed above, this isn’t an all-in-one platform, so there are other expenses involved if you go this route.

The Verdict 

All three platforms are great in their own right. 

With the features they offer, their user-friendly interfaces, and their reasonable pricing packages, it isn’t hard to see why the three companies are making waves in the eLearning scene.

However, in terms of offering an all-in-one solution to its users, Kajabi does have its advantages. Not only does Kajabi have a myriad of sophisticated tools for website creation, product creation, and audience management, but their marketing features are packed with functionalities that you need to be able to promote your business effectively.

5 of the Best Travel Resources

Thanks to modern day technology, travelling the world has never been easier. We can be anywhere around the globe and stay connected to our loved ones and other travellers. There’s an app for everything these days, and it would be foolish not to take advantage of the abundance of amazing travel resources at your fingertips. Say hello to easier, cheaper travel thanks to these 5 FREE resources…

Comparison websites

Planning your holiday has never been easier, with travel comparison websites, you can make sure you’re not paying over the odds for your hotel stay, flights or car hire. It’s the ultimate travel hacking tip and not one to be ignored. It’s well worth spending an extra 20 minutes comparing prices online to save you money that could be better spent elsewhere on your trip. It also saves you time trawling different websites by displaying all the prices and options in one place.

Language apps

No matter where you’re heading in the world, it’s always polite to learn the basics of the country’s native tongue. A simple ‘thank you’ can go a long way, and earn you the respect of the locals. You no longer have to fumble around for a torn-up phrase book buried in the bottom of your rucksack.

Instead, download a handy language app such as Duolingo to use whilst you’re abroad. Let’s face it, most of us usually have our phones to hand so it’s a convenient method of learning the basics and mastering a few phrases to help you along the way. The best part is it’s totally free.

Expense trackers

If you’re heading off on your gap year, or embarking on an exciting trip during a career break, keeping an eye on your finances and budgeting effectively is extremely important. You don’t want to be booking an early flight home due to lack of funds, so downloading an app that does the hard work for you makes total sense.

You can discover various different travel expense trackers in the app store, and select one that you feel helps to organise your dollar the most. You can set daily budgets, as well as adding receipts and expenses. It’s a headache-free way of managing your finances, because after all, who has time for money management when the world awaits?

Facebook groups

There’s a huge travel community on Facebook, and it’s a fantastic way of connecting with like-minded travellers. Suddenly the world doesn’t feel quite as big as when you start to liaise within these group pages.

Research the different groups available and request to join, there are many different niches too, for examples female solo travellers, and digital nomads. Find one that suits you and use the groups knowledge to your strength. Ask questions, learn from the mistakes of others and make a few friends along the way.

Travel blogs

The internet is overflowing with an abundance of immense travel content for you to use at absolutely no cost. Travel blogs are a fantastic, free resource that you shouldn’t forget to use. Reading up on other traveller’s experiences can be a useful way of determining your own path.

You can learn what to do, and more importantly, what not to do! Travel blogs are also a fantastic source of inspiration if you’re not sure where to head to next. Take advice from the travel experts and make your next trip the best one yet.

About

My name is Brian and I’m a Graduate of Business Administration Marketing. I work full time in Sales and Marketing. I am also the owner of Blog Engage a social network I created specifically for bloggers. Come and join us on Blog Engage

7 Blues Tunes for Your Road Trip Playlist

Whether you’re going on a trip with your blues-loving buddies or planning a solitary sojourn to feed your soul, the journey will be made more meaningful and memorable if you’ve got the tunes to go along with it. Ahead you’ll find some of the best road trip-worthy songs to add to your playlist. Wherever it is you’re going, make sure to find time to play along or come up with some blues tunes of your own.

So pack your bags and your gear and drive along to these soulful songs for the road.

Have Blues, Will Travel by Smokin’ Joe Kubek and Bnois King

The first track off the album of the same title, ‘Have Blues, Will Travel’ will set up the mood for your road trip. It’s a rockin’ track that will get you singing and moving along as your breeze along the highway.

Stormy Monday by T-Bone Walker

No blues playlist is ever complete without this classic penned and recorded by electric blues guitar pioneer T-Bone Walker. ‘Stormy Monday,’ the full title of which is ‘Call It Stormy Monday (But Tuesday Is Just as Bad)’, is the song that inspired the legendary B.B. King – along with many others – to pick up the electric guitar. B.B. King also performed the song on many occasions, further cementing its status as a blues staple. Give it a listen and you’ll surely be inspired to keep going on your blues journey too! To find your ideal blues guitar then check out this post.

Travelin’ South by Tab Benoit

If you’re traveling south, well, this song would be a nice accompaniment to your trip. Tab Benoit’s catchy tune will make you sing along and itch to play it on your next stop.

Rolling Stone by Muddy Waters

Fun fact: The Rolling Stones (the band) and Rolling Stone (the magazine) are both named after this song written by blues musician Muddy Waters. The song, released in 1950, is a solo performance, but other artists who have made their own recordings of the songs used other instrumental accompaniment. We’re loving Big Mama Thornton’s rendition, which we suggest you add to your playlist pronto.

Going to New York by Jimmy Reed

It doesn’t matter if you’re actually going to New York, what matters is this song proves to be a good mood-setter as you make your way to wherever. Originally by Jimmy Reed and later covered by acts such as the Siegel-Schwall Band and The Doors, ‘Going to New York’ is another classic you shouldn’t leave out of your blues playlist.

River’s Invitation by Percy Mayfield

Written by Percy Mayfield and released in 1953, ‘River’s Invitation’ has become a favorite among many artists. One of these is blues singer and harmonica player James Cotton, who recorded his own version in 1968. It’s an awesome track for those who love hearing the harmonica being played to its best. For the original Mayfield recording, you can take a listen here.

Coming Home by Elmore James

In 1957, blues singer and the man considered to be the King of the Slide Guitar, Elmore James released ‘Coming Home.’ It’s a song that would be the perfect track to listen to when you’re on your way back – to start anew perhaps, or to reunite with what you left behind.

What other blues songs will you add to this list? Leave a comment so others can check it out!

About Jennifer Hughes

Jen is regular contributor around the web on guitar and ukulele related themes.

6 Tips That Will Make You A More Successful Internet Research Specialist

Working as an Internet Research Specialist is a great career to have given the advancements in technology and how everyone is always connected online these days. Be glad to know there are ways for how you can be more successful in your role and present better outcomes to your clients.

You will have greater chance at being able to deliver quality work when you’re focused on what it takes to ensure you’re performing well and consistently. There are all types of industries that are looking for research specialists, so don’t be afraid to branch out if you become bored or uninterested in the topics you’re currently investigating.

1.   Advance Your Knowledge & Skills

You’re going to want to make sure you’re qualified to work in your field before trying to obtain clients. Advance your knowledge and skills in this area by going back to school and getting the proper background and education you need to do your job well. Check out Lendkey if you’re in need of a student loan so you can pursue your professional career goals and afford to go back to school. It’s vital to make sure you have the right qualifications and knowledge, so you’re more likely to get hired for positions you’re interested in.

2.   Be Organized

It’s important to always stay focused on the end goal and be able to present your facts and figures in a clear and concise manner. The more organized you are, the more professional you’re going to appear to clients and likely you are to get your findings across to them and make your point. It’s not an easy task because there’s so much information you’re taking in at one time so come up with processes and procedures that work best for you. There are plenty of tools available to you that will make your job easier and help you better order and organize your research.

3.   Focus on Your Communication Skills

Another tip that will make you a more successful Internet Research Specialist is to focus on improving your communication skills. You need both written and verbal abilities if you’re going to be able to present your findings to others in a way that isn’t confusing or can be easily misunderstood. While a lot of your job consists of you being on the computer, the other piece of the puzzle is you being able to gather and communicate your results and conclusions to clients. You’re also going to have to be able to build and maintain client relationships, especially if you’re working for yourself.

4.   Use Data & Statistics

Conducting proper research means being able to communicate using data and statistics versus assumptions or opinions. Be able to show your clients specific reasons as to how you came to your conclusion and have information to back up your claims. You’ll have an easier time selling your viewpoint on a matter when you can show the statistics and mathematical equations behind your findings. You can also use graphs and charts to make better sense of your data so others can easily understand it.

5.   Have Perseverance

Researching specific information and looking for the answers you need online takes time. It’s important that you have determination and perseverance if you want to succeed in your role. There’s so much data and knowledge available that it can be a challenging task to sift through it all and get to the information you are specifically looking for. You not only need to find the information you’re in search of, but also have the patience to determine if the website you’re using is a credible and reliable source. The answers you seek may not come to you right away, and so you have to have the endurance to keep on searching.

6.   Find A Quiet Place to Work

The good news is that you can do your job from just about anywhere when you’re an Internet Research Specialist. All you need is a strong internet connection and a quiet place to work. Consider freelancing or working from home if you’ve always wanted the independence that comes from working for yourself. You’re going to want to be able to concentrate and focus on what you’re doing when you’re busy digging through pages and pages of data and information. Staying focused and concentrating on the task at hand is going to help you get through your projects quicker, and you’ll also be likely to commit fewer errors in the process.

Image courtesy of cookie__cutter at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

About

My name is Brian and I’m a Graduate of Business Administration Marketing. I work full time in Sales and Marketing. I am also the owner of Blog Engage a social network I created specifically for bloggers. Come and join us on Blog Engage

Web Testing; Choosing Quality Over Quantity

As technology is advancing to new levels, the competition in the web industry is also increasing by the day. The need to deliver high-quality products has become extremely important for an organization to establish themselves in the market.

Customers look for quality products and that is exactly what you aim to deliver. You conduct various tests and quality assurance on your web applications and websites before launching it in the market. However, how do you ensure that your product is of the best quality?

It all comes down to the statistics of your quality testing. You measure the quality of your products by the number of errors detected, test cases formed, time invested in testing, test cases executed within a certain amount of time, browsers tested during cross-browser testing, so on and so forth.

These quantitative measures help you evaluate the quality of your application and give you an impression that your application is optimum and up to the mark. Remember, any web application or website can never be completely error free and it requires quality assurance checks regularly.

Running multiple test cases does not mean that your application is of the best quality. If you only look at the numbers, you will get a false sense of security and never be able to optimize your application and make it error free.

Why should you choose quality over quantity testing?

The definition of a quality product can vary from customer to customer. Some may judge the quality of your web application by looking at the number of tests you executed, number of test cases you created, number of bugs detected, etc., while others way actually pay close attention to the application functionality and quality.

What you must keep in mind is that your web application will be used by thousands of customers who have diverse thoughts and opinions on what quality really means.

Pleasing everyone with just numbers is not enough. You need to able to prove that your application works as efficiently as the statistics claim. If you have run multiple tests and there are still weak points in the application, it can bring down your credibility and brand reputation.

If you focus on quality testing you will be able to deliver products that exceed customer expectations, increase customer loyalty, satisfaction and expand your business.

This is the reason why choosing Quality over Quantity in web testing is a better and smarter option.

How do you measure the quality of your product?

The question arises that how do you measure the quality of your product, if not by the statistics of your quality assurance tests?

  • 1.      Instead of creating multiple test cases, focus on developing quality test cases

The most important thing is to first develop high-quality tests. Your test cases should focus on eliminating risks, finding security breaches, making sure your web application is cross browser compatible and all the things that increase the quality of the application. You should not create test cases just for the sake of running multiple tests.

There needs to be an aim behind the test you are running. Set a purpose for your web tests and test your application with a target in mind. This will help you run high-quality tests and increase the quality of your tests as well.

  • 2.      Focus on the outcomes of your tests

Always pay close attention to the result of your tests. Study the outcomes and understand what you can do in order to improve the system.

If you are running a cross-browser test and the result states that your web application is compatible with most but not all browsers are you satisfied with the results? Or do you wish to increase its compatibility, simultaneously increasing its quality?

With a tool like LambdaTest you can perform cross-browser testing of your web application compatibility across more than 2000 web browsers and it, in turn, helps you increase the quality of your product quality.

  • 3.      Return on Investment (ROI)

Testing helps you understand whether the investments you are making on your product actually generating some profits and returns. By testing your application after regular intervals you will get to know which features work best and which components don’t.

A quality product is that which has useful components which benefit the customers in some way. If your product quality is exceptional, your customers will automatically be satisfied and your ROI will be higher.

  • 4.      Pay attention to your win rate

Keeping an eye on the win rate of your tests can help you understand if the test cases you run are significant or not. If most of your test cases do not generate any conclusion or become successful, it means you need to develop better and more powerful and effective test cases.

  • 5.      Rectify errors and incorporate changes

Implementing your test results and taking steps to make your application better is the most important part of creating a quality product. Take suitable actions on your test results and increase the product quality.

If you follow the above steps, you will automatically be able to develop quality products. These measures are quality focused, not quantity focused.

What makes a Quality tester?

There are plenty of Testers busy testing websites and web applications day in and day out. However, how do you differentiate a quality tester from a crowd of other Testers?

  • 1.      A quality tester gains knowledge of the system before testing it

Any professional tester with some experience in the field can detect few bugs from an application without even studying it. However, it takes in-depth knowledge of the system to find out small bugs which get overlooked because they do not directly affect the system outputs.

If you want to improve the quality of the tests you conduct, you should study the system, understand its underlying functionality and gain more knowledge about it first. This way you will be able to create strong test cases and find out even the smallest of errors.

  • 2.      Knowing which components are important

In web testing, there are plenty of different factors that can be tested and most testers spend an unnecessary amount of time focusing on irrelevant components.

A quality tester understands the key components that need to be tested, which factors are important from the customer’s point of view, etc. Prioritizing tests is very important in order to deliver a quality product.

  • 3.      Understanding customer requirements

Each application and website is developed to fulfill certain requirements.  Gathering requirements is the first step of developing an application. Your product should completely meet the customer’s requirements to qualify as a quantity product.

This is the reason why quality testers first understand the customer requirements instead of diving into developing test cases. They put themselves in the customer’s shoes and see whether the application meets customer demands.

  • 4.      They focus on test results and develop optimum solutions

Quality testers perform assurance testing and take steps towards strengthening the system based on the results of the tests.

Analytical ability is the key feature which sets quality testers apart from others. They are able to analyze the test results and device efficient solutions for the betterment of the application or system.

Conclusion

Do not let quantity distract you from the quality of the product you deliver to your customers. Quantity may be the initial attraction factor which lures customers to you; however, with time they will demand better quality only.

This is the reason why choosing quality over quantity is the best web testing practice. If you deliver exemplary quality, you can expand your business and develop customer satisfaction and loyalty too.

About

My name is Brian and I’m a Graduate of Business Administration Marketing. I work full time in Sales and Marketing. I am also the owner of Blog Engage a social network I created specifically for bloggers. Come and join us on Blog Engage

How Effective Design Can Expand Your Business Reach

Marketing techniques will not produce benefits for your company without effective design. However, when designed effectively, advertising such as websites, television and posters can expand your reach by connecting and inspiring as many people as possible. Here’s how.

1. Web Design

Although you might think that design is all about making your site colorful and bright, effective website design can also increase the number of viewers that interact with your site. A professional and well-designed website is more likely to be invested in as well as shared across platforms such as social media, expanding how many people your business will target. Your web design will also help to expand your reach if you place reviews and keywords in priority places such as your homepage as Google sees these as ranking factors and will push your website further up their listings, meaning that more people will see your content when conducting relevant searches. Additionally, developing your design to factor in website tracking analytics such as your SEO technique will ensure that your website can improve and that it matches the needs of your audience.

2. Media

The average American spends 6 hours watching television a day, providing ample opportunity to give your product exposure. However, television and radio advertising can be expensive, and so it is paramount that you connect with as many people as possible.

Using a multi-channel advertising campaign that is consistent between platforms can help to produce a recognizable advertisement that is instantly connected with your business. Delivering a message that differentiates your company from the rest of the market will help to make your company memorable and connect with your branding. Services such as from a trusted digital media buying agency can help you to broaden your media reach by arranging advertising spaces such as television and radio for you.

3. Billboards

When people see billboards, they will normally be traveling and this means that their attention span will be limited. You can improve the design of your billboards by ensuring that they are simple and carry an understandable key message to potential clients. For instance, including humor will show your company to be light-hearted and fun and this will often be more memorable than a serious campaign.

Once you have decided the correct message to deliver, billboards can help to massively expand your reach as their size means that they will be recognizable and easy to read for the majority of people that pass them. Their position next to roadsides also gives them great potential as they will be seen by the greatest number of people as possible and their content is unavoidable.

4. Posters and Flyers

Posters and flyers are delivered directly to people’s doors, giving them a broader reach than a lot of other formats as they will be read by a wide selection of people. This gives you the opportunity to tailor your advertisements to your target market such as location-based advertising. Due to the format, you can include more information about your company and explain the benefits of your services or products to your customer. These enable you to have a broader reach as you will be connecting more directly with potential customers and designing these effectively can increase the chances of a purchase.

Therefore, to improve your business’s reach, you must broadcast your company’s brand message through a variety of different platforms and create designs that reinforce that key message to your audience.

Image courtesy of Stuart Miles at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

About

My name is Brian and I’m a Graduate of Business Administration Marketing. I work full time in Sales and Marketing. I am also the owner of Blog Engage a social network I created specifically for bloggers. Come and join us on Blog Engage

9 Essential Tips to Use LinkedIn to The Fullest

LinkedIn has recently announced its growth, touching the 546 million users in more than 200 countries and geographical areas.

With nine million connected companies, ten million active workers and an average of one hundred thousand articles published every week, this is definitely a place where you can build and market your online presence.

If you want to leverage the power of LinkedIn, here are nine essential tips to use this social network to the fullest.

1. Customize Your URL

Customizing your profile URL helps you look more professional. Also, it will be easier to share and will not be dispersed among the thousands of profiles that contain simple numbers.

Doing this is very simple. You just need to enter the profile settings and click on “Edit profile URL”:

In this way, you can insert name and surname instead of the string of numbers, making it more personalized and palatable. This little trick will allow you to show how careful you are with personal branding.

2. Enter The Link Of Your Website

Instead of the predicted field in the contact list, use the Portfolio section.

You can add different jobs, links and descriptions, to create an attractive profile for your contacts.

Make sure you include all those jobs that really made the difference and that completely represent your business profile.

3. Add a Relevant Cover Image

Using a proper cover image that is relevant to your niche will help your profile visitors identify what you do, at first glance.

If you own a company, you can use a graphic designer to create a cover image that is the same for all your employees. In this way, the concept of belonging to a community will be strengthened.

If you are a freelancer, you create a customized image that lets people understand who you are and what you do, at the first sight.

T. Harv Eker is the perfect example of using a relevant and proper LinkedIn cover image. As an entrepreneur and author of bestselling books, he created a composition of different pictures that also reminds his other activities as a public speaker and results coaching:

The size of the LinkedIn cover image is 1584 x 396 pixels, so be careful. If you are not a graphic designer and do not have the chance to rely on someone who is an expert, with Canva you can create beautiful images of personalized dimensions.

4. Work on SEO

Did you know that Google indexes LinkedIn profiles according to the SEO rules?

When you are filling out your profile, make sure you use the keywords that best represent you professionally in the headline, in the summary and, again, in the description of your work experience.

5. Leverage Groups

Groups are useful to make themselves known by posting interesting content.

All users in the same group can use direct messages to communicate with each other, up to 15 per month and per member of each group they belong to. You can leverage this feature to send personalized messages in order to improve your personal branding and amplify your professional network.

Did you write any content that you consider particularly useful for a specific group? Take advantage of this functionality and share it with members, obviously without spam.

6. Use Mentions

If you want a particular status or content to be viewed by a specific company or user, you can use the mention function (which is the equivalent of the Facebook tag).

This does not mean that at every update you can tag 30 people to show your new article. Instead, use this feature carefully, because the step to become a professional spammer is short.

7. Take Advantage of the Pulse Function

As already mentioned, LinkedIn indexed profiles based on the keywords used. If you do not have a blog where you can write authoritative and useful articles related to your sector, you can use the Pulse feature (think of it as the LinkedIn news section).

The final effect is equal to a real article. You can use a cover image, insert the title, the H2 and the quotes. Also, you can add links on certain keywords, embed images and Youtube videos, making it very similar to a real blog post.

8. Ask for Recommendations

Self-praise can be counterproductive, but if the compliments come from another person they are more credible.

The recommendations should highlight the salient aspects of your professionalism, but also those of your personality and soft skills, such as the ability to problem-solving or teamwork.

9. Fill Up the “Accomplishments” Section

In this section, you can add the training courses you completed, or the most important projects you have accomplished during your career (e.g. development of the company website). You can also enter the languages ​​spoken (without cheating) and if you have received any prize or recognition.

The more detailed information you will be able to enter in this section, the more your profile will appear complete and professional.

Bonus Tip

One last tip: if you do volunteer work, enter it in the Volunteer Experience & Causes section. Showing yourself as socially engaged people could give you some more points during the selection process.

LinkedIn is an important tool for personal branding, so be sure to follow the above mentioned steps and leverage its full marketing power!

Video blogging and translation – where to start

Video content is growing exponentially, with predictions that by 2019, it will make up 80% of consumer internet traffic across the world. There is no doubt that video has an impact on sales. Some statistics report that a company that uses video in its marketing efforts is 53 times more likely to be found on page 1 of the SERPs. This is mainly because video vastly improves SEO and boosts search engine rankings. For video bloggers, using this medium to share their messages and brand is a key part of their success.

Since 80 percent of the world doesn’t speak English, it is vitally important to understand the impact that translating your website’s video materials could have. Not only is video the key to increased revenue, but it is also now a primary means of exposure for bloggers and websites. Video can cross cultural barriers quite well and is utilized by people of all ages. It is especially popular among younger viewers with expendable income, with companies moving fast to meet this need. As an example, in the multi-billion dollar gaming industry, demand for video game translation services has exploded in recent years.

If you’re a video blogger who is looking to use translation services to reach international audiences, it can be hard to know where to start. In this article, we will explore some considerations that can start you off on the right foot.

Set Your Translation Goals Early In The Game

When you are creating a multilingual video blog, you will no doubt want to find the most cost-effective way to translate your content. Ideally, you’re going to know what video translation services you will need before beginning translation work on your site. Think about questions such as:

  • How often do you upload videos and how long are they?
  • Do you want every vlog entry translated or just some?
  • How many languages do you want to publish them in?
  • Do you want to use translation services for old video blog posts or just new ones?

Now that you are aware of the impact video can have on your brand – and for video bloggers, you usually are the brand – you’ll naturally want to implement it on your multilingual site as soon as possible. The first thing you should do is set some goals. Translation of video for some languages can be more complicated, so your translation team will need to know beforehand what language(s) you plan to target.

With some languages, issues like subtitles that are too long to fit on the screen or voiceovers that are not at the right speed may require a new video to be shot. With advanced planning and consulting with a professional translator, you can potentially avoid some of these pitfalls. The translation team will also help you to create content that is easily adaptable to different languages.

Decide Whether You Want Subtitles, Voice-Over, or Translated Captions

Once you’ve chosen your target language, you can consider how you want to deliver the content. There are a few things to account for when you are determining which style to use.

  • How much dialogue is there?
  • How many people will be speaking?
  • Is there music in the background that is important to the storyline?
  • How important is the acting and voice of the speaker?
  • Are there charts or infographics that need to be translated as well?
  • Do you need closed captioning?

You will want to make sure that your video translation is fascinating to watch and easy for your target audience to understand, just as it is in your native language. No matter which style you choose, translating it should meet that goal.

Will You Need To Localize Your Video Blog Entries?

If your video blog entries are going to require localization, you will need a translation and localization expert to assist you with this. If you are not sensitive to the needs of your audience, you could alienate them rather than engage them. The script should be analyzed for culturally appropriate content. Colors, themes, and content should be chosen in a way that can include other languages down the road. You will also need to make sure that any graphics and images in the video reflect the culture of your intended audience.

Because cultural expectations are different all over the world, you’ll need a native translation expert who can sort out the subtleties and nuances that you might otherwise overlook. What one culture finds funny, another may find offensive. Likewise, symbols have different meanings in different places. Even different superstitions and rituals can make or break the way your message is conveyed. By ensuring your video is translated and delivered in a manner appropriate for your audience, you will save yourself from embarrassment and from the unfortunate consequences of turning your audience off, rather than on, to your message.

Stay Flexible To Accommodate Multiple Translations

Sometimes words and phrases in English become much longer in translation. As such, your audience may need longer to read a subtitle than length of the frame. Consider this when recording future video blog entries, as it might help to slow down the pace of the recording a notch, with your international viewers in mind. If you speak fast, consider allowing short, but still natural, pauses between sentences in order to assist in fitting the voiceover, subtitles, or captions into the time available. It can take a little time to adjust, but you can gradually slow the pace of conversation down slightly in this way. Even two seconds can make a difference when your audience is reading subtitles. This will allow you to retain your message while still conveying it in another language.

Another way to accomplish this is to lengthen the amount of time a graphic or photo appears onscreen, if you use those in your video blogs. It does not have to be more than a few seconds, but again it will build some extra time in to allow for the possibility of more words being used in the video translation. To take this a step further, you could even record some additional footage (depending on the subject of your vlog entries) that you can edit into the video.

Another consideration is to find the right balance between any text that is part of the video and the subtitles themselves. You don’t have to translate every single word in order to deliver content that is understandable, so perhaps you could work with your translation agency to deliver the key messages of each video, but by using fewer words in the subtitles. It’s still perfectly possible to deliver engaging messages in this way.

Video Translation: Time to Begin

Every situation will be different, depending upon what you use your video blog for and who you want to reach with it. What is most important is to convey the information to your target audience in the way they will be open to receiving it. When you’re choosing how to create your video, try to think like your intended audience, well before the translation itself takes place. You want to share content with your international viewers that translates into something they can understand and engage with. Planning ahead and creating a strategy that will achieve the best results possible can be the perfect springboard for your international success.

Image courtesy of atibodyphoto at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

About Louise Taylor

Louise Taylor manages content for Tomedes, a translation company. She has worked in the language and translation industry for many years and is fluent in multiple languages.