How to Develop and Promote Your Handwriting Service Business

How to Develop and Promote Your Handwriting Service Business

Part 2 in the Make Money with Your Personal Handwriting Business

 

We discussed the opportunity for handwritten notes and envelopes. Now we will discuss how to develop the business and reach the people who could use your service. I hope this post will serve to suggest a strategy to develop and promote your home-based business. Click here for the post on Part one of this series.

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Key Value to Stand Out From the Crowd

You should promote your handwriting as an affordable alternative to calligraphy.

People will assume your service is the more expensive craft of calligraphy, and you need to explain the difference between the two handwritings. Put your handwriting on display on your business card. It will stand out for sure.

Set Your Goals

Set Your Goals

Standardize Your Service for Easy Pricing

It is better to standardize your package of services for cost control, time control and to explain your pricing package.

For example, let’s say you want to offer handwritten “Thank You for the Sale” notes for professionals who want to correspond with their clients. We know the most popular greeting cards sold by Hallmark are the Thank You cards. So, price your service at $5.00 per card. It should include:

  • A four by six inch card stock with matching envelope
  • Limit the words to 50, so the message is brief, to the point, and nice to read.
  • Handwrite the mailing and return address.
  • Include a first class postage stamp from the US Postal Service.

 

An added touch is to obtain several small denomination stamps or special issue stamps to further personalize the face of the envelope. Yes, people note the stamps!

 

A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words

Develop a sample note with envelopes and stamps to show what you can do for that real estate agent. Sales professionals know that a nice thank you will lead to referrals that will generate more sales.

 

How to Price Your Mass Envelope Addressing Service?

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When you show the notes and the addressed envelopes, be sure to mention you can address envelopes for a direct mail campaign. How to price?

Time your self on addressing 100 envelopes. If it takes two hours, charge $50. This will allow room for you to offer a discount for 500 envelopes. That way, the business manager can see if this strategy is effective for increasing the response rate. Be sure the volume charge offers real value to the buyer of your service.

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Promotion Strategy

You are going to network with potential customers. The Chamber of Commerce in your area will have networking meetings. You can also talk to your realtor, chiropractor, automobile salesman, and the like.

When you meet the person at a networking meeting, give your “elevator speech” and your business card. What do I mean by an “elevator speech?”

This is a speech you can give in an elevator in about 30 seconds to convey that your service is to help businesses improve their image.

 

Here is a sample speech:

“Hi, I’m Bill Hall. I help small businesses and professionals improve their image and sales by writing clear, personal handwritten notes to your current and potential clients. I offer personally written thank you notes, call to action notes and more. Here’s my card. Call me. I can help you increase your business.”

Yes, it is that easy.

For more tips, view my video on “Shoe Leather Marketing” by clicking here.

This is a low investment home based business. But it does require effort on your part to market your service. Use your written communication skills to your advantage and provide this market with a unique service that only you can provide. Sweet!

 

Key Resource: “Handwriting Service Business Plan, Marketing Plan, How to Guide, and Funding Directory,” by BizStartUpDB. This package includes detailed plans to answer any questions you may have. You can buy it by clicking here.

 

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Leave a comment below and let me know what you think of this idea. Don’t forget to click “Thumbs Up” on YouTube and “Like” on Facebook. Thanks

As Rosie the Thunder Dog would say:

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Handwriting for Cash? Absolutely!

Handwriting for Cash? Absolutely!

How to Make Money Writing Personal Handwritten Notes in Your Retirement

 

“Do the best you can with what you’ve got. Then don’t worry about it.” –Ivan Hall

 

Make money with your handwriting? Are you kidding? No, I’m not. Think about it.

When you go to your mailbox, you find a pile of mail. You sort through bills, and “junk mail.” The question begs: What envelope would you open?

 

Do you reach for one with a laser printed mailing label or one with a handwritten address and return address. Would you look at the colorful, unique stamp on that envelope?

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Yes, you would open the handwritten envelope. Someone took the time to handwrite the address. It is so rare an occurrence; you cannot toss it in the trash without reading it first.

 

“Wait a minute, Mr. Postman…” 

Do you remember the opening lyrics to that song? You are showing your age.

Once upon a time, in a world that existed long ago, a letter was the only means of communication available for long distance contact. In Internet years, that was the pre-historic age.

First class mail is no longer the main business of the United States Postal Service. We send letters by email or text and ignore the paper mail sitting in that box by the road.

 

Endangered Species: “Cursive” Handwriting

Writing13Schools no longer teach penmanship to elementary students. Remember the days of “cursive” writing drills? Kids today don’t even learn how to sign their name!

Businesses employ people with terrible handwriting or poorly formed block-lettering skills. Messages are all typewritten now. But the sameness is boring. How to stand out from the crowd? Lovely handwriting!

 

How to Stand Out From the Crowd

speak out for home-based-businesses

It is rare to see handwritten letters or notes today. Small businesses trying to use direct mail to advertise their services are finding a paltry 2% response rate. It stands to reason that good handwriting can increase this response.

We older Americans are part of the generation that learned how to write using cursive style. We all have a unique handwriting. If people admire your handwriting, why not make money from home? It could supplement your retirement lifestyle.

 

Opportunity Knocks

Professionals have a great need to write a personal note to clients thanking them for the sale. Real Estate agents, Insurance agents, Automobile sales, and everyone you can think of that could benefit with a note that will be so unique, people will remember their names.

Small businesses want to find a way to improve their direct mail campaign. Why not suggest a handwritten address and return address on every envelope? People will open them and take action. If they can increase the response rate to 5 to 10%, that is a WOW factor for them.

Here is a resource you can use to develop this business:

Key Resource: “Handwriting Service Business Plan, Marketing Plan, How to Guide, and Funding Directory,” by BizStartUpDB. This package includes detailed plans to answer any questions you may have. You can buy it by clicking here.

 

See part two in this series of handwriting business called “How to Develop and Market Your Handwriting service.”

Leave a comment below and let me know what you think of this idea. Don’t forget to click “Thumbs Up” on YouTube and “Like” on Facebook. Thanks.

As Rosie the Thunder Dog would say:

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How to Master the Techniques of Direct Sales

Direct Selling is Not as Hard as You Think

“Mom was 50 when my Dad died. She got on a bus every weekday for years, and rode 40 miles each morning to Madison. She earned a new degree and learned new skills to start her small business. It wasn’t just a new livelihood. It was a new life.” –Paul Ryan

 

 

AAKK! I hate selling!

Is this you? Don’t sweat it. You can learn the selling techniques with a little bit of preparation, planning, and practice. There is a science to “closing” a sale. This is a very brief article to help you sell ads on your local portal site.

In our previous post, “How to Develop a Local Portal Site into a Cash Cow,” we discussed the potential of earning cash by selling ads directly to business owners. This one requirement to speak directly to a customer prevents people from trying this business model. This article is to help you sell the ads. Click here for the post.

 

Prepare a Demonstration Website

When you are explaining the benefits to your Local Portal Website, you need to show your potential customers what you can do for them. You should develop a demonstration model displaying the features and benefits of your service.

Key points for your demo site include:

  • Use a “responsive” theme so people with smartphones can read it.

 

  • Use an actual local name and not “Any town, USA” as the title.

 

  • Use your local town and add content on the area you know very well.

 

  • Add attractive pictures of the area.

 

  • Show the ten slots you have reserved for businesses with a sample ad.

 

  • Show the logo, pictures, coupons as well as the content of the ad.

 

  • Show the “comment” section with positive testimonials of the business.

 

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A picture is worth a thousand words (Chinese Proverb)

Your demo site is worth many thousands of words. Use a “slide show” or a video of the business service or product for better rankings on Google. Remember your site’s target market: people using smartphones. Keep the videos short and smartphone friendly.

 

Show how SEO mobile friendly techniques generate traffic

Many mobile devices are using voice activation commands like: “Hey, Siri,” or “Ok, Google.” Use keywords that are easy for voice commands to find. You will need to optimize your landing page, your website, and your content to make it easy for search engines to find it.

Don’t forget to keep the content simple for mobile devices. Keep the videos short and the pictures relevant to the site. That way your advertiser will be impressed with your demo site on their smartphone.

 

Content in fast forward motion with wind behind it to show movement

Develop a script for your sales pitch:

Now that you have a demo Local Portal Site, it will be easy to develop a pitch loaded with benefits to the advertiser. You need to write a script and practice with it. Know your information thoroughly so you will not be flustered when asked a question in the middle of your pitch.

 

Here are some suggestions for your sales pitch:

  • Identify all of the benefits of your service and work it into the pitch.

 

  • State the purpose of the local portal site.

 

  • Explain the benefit from the traffic your site will (or is) attracting.

 

  • Ask them to go to your demonstration site (or your actual site if it has been running for awhile) and view the benefits of its simplicity.

 

  • Another benefit to explain is to show how the site will reach people doing a search with their smartphones.

 

  • Explaining the cost advantage by contrasting the expense of an ineffective Yellow Page ad and the cost of your own service.

 

  • Contrast the benefit of smartphone search as compared with Yellow Page searches.

 

  • Suggest creating a coupon unique to your site so the owner knows the site is generating sales.

 

  • Explain the benefit of your annual subscription rate over the monthly rate for the Yellow Pages for their business.

 

  • Explain the benefit of the comment section and how a positive testimonial develops trust with the reader.

 

 

Secrets to “Closing the Sale”

Ok, you used your scripted sales pitch. You listened carefully to the reaction from the buyer and the questions. You answered all the questions honestly, and without being pushy. Now you should review all of the benefits of your service.

My marketing professor, Dan Chamberlain, taught the “Secret to Closing the Sale” is to “Ask for the order.”

Yes, most sales pitches fail because the salesperson will not ask for the sale. Be sure you close with the “ask.”

planning

 

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Do you want to read up on the subject of closing the sale? Here is a good book that may help you overcome your fear of failure. It is called “Secrets of a Master Closer: A Simpler, Easier, and Faster Way to Sell Anything to Anyone, Anytime, Anywhere,” by Mike Kaplan.

There you have it. Give it a try and leave me a comment below. If you are watching the video, please press “Thumbs Up.” If you are reading this on FaceBook, please click the “Like” button. Thanks.

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How to Develop a Local Portal Site into a “Cash Cow!”

How to Develop a Local Portal Site into a “Cash Cow!”

Lucrative Online Business: Selling Ads on Local Portal Sites 

 

“Don’t worry about failure. You only have to be right once.” –Drew Houston, Dropbox Founder

 

Local portal websites are often much easier to develop than other types of websites. Here’s why:

 

What is a Local Portal Website?

It is simply a location-specific guide. It can also be industry specific

For example, a local portal website might be as broad as a”Guide to San Francisco.” It could also be more specific, such as a guide to “Pizzas in New York.” Or “Spas in Boston.”

Naturally, the broader your topic, the harder it will be to rank for it. So try to be as specific as you can make it so the search engines will find it. Smartphones today are helping people find businesses while they are in motion. Make your site accessible for “people on the go.”

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The Best Way to Make Money on a Local Portal Website

This is the kicker: The upfront cash is the reason why local portal websites are such great online businesses.

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You should offer advertisements from local businesses. These are businesses that are often paying as much as $300 to $500 a month for ads in the Yellow Pages. Sadly, “Look with Luke, Look in the Book” is a poor performer today compared to two decades ago.

 

Rank Your Site with Quality Content

If you can get your website ranked in the top three for keywords like “Spas in Boston,” it’s much easier to justify your fee. Knowledge of SEO (Search Engine Optimization) will help you ensure good rankings.

 

What to Charge for Ads on Your Local Portal Site?

Offline advertisers are often willing to pay $100 to $500 a year for an ad placement on a well-ranked local portal website. Aim for 5-10 placements on your site. At $100 a year, the site would generate $500 to $1,000. If you can sell the ads at $500 a pop, the site generates $2,500 to $5,000 a year. Not too shabby for a low-competition, moderately trafficked website.

 

Annual Subscription is Best

By avoiding monthly charges, you will ensure longevity to achieve rankings. Your client will have 12 months to determine if your site is effective in increasing their sales. You can add articles to help the rankings results. Also, annual charges ensure more time for you to devote to other projects.

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Choosing a Portal

You should choose a portal in a city that isn’t too competitive. New York for example, will be far too competitive. Daly City in California will be much less competitive. Wait! You say you don’t live in Daly City? No problem. This is an Internet based business. You can operate from anywhere there is access to the World Wide Web.

The trick is to locate an industry that has enough businesses to sell advertising space. For example, you could do a search for eateries in Daly City. Once you have the names, you can design your site with pictures of the area and articles on popular venues. Develop ten slots for ads. Don’t forget to leave space for comments and reviews. Search engines love comments.

 

Reach out to the owner of the business via email and direct phone calls.

Yes, it takes effort on your part. This is not a passive income model. You must sell ad space. This work requirement is why people don’t do it. This is also why entrepreneurs willing to put in the effort will profit. Maybe you had a career in sales. Then this would be a natural fit for you. If you are new to this, read the blog post on direct sales techniques for beginners.

 

Give this business model a try. Start small with a local venue to learn how to run this business. Leverage your earnings with more local portal sites.

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Do you want to read up on building a profitable website? Read “Designing a Profit-Driving Website: A Fifteen Minute Guide to Building or Rebuilding Your Online Presence,” by Rory Dayton. Click here.

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Did you like this post? Leave a comment below and let me hear from you. Also, click the “Like” button on Facebook and the “Thumbs Up” button on Google+ and YouTube. Thanks.

 

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Retirees Make Money With Targeted News Blog

Retirees Make Money With Targeted News Blog

Make Money by Starting a Targeted News Blog

 

 

 

“The value of an idea lies in the using of it.”

Thomas Edison, Electric Light Bulb Inventor

 

The most successful news sites or blog sites are highly targeted with a narrow focus for a specific type of person. Specific sites are more likely to attract search engine traffic due to the specific topics covered. These sites are more likely to get passed along within a community of like-minded people. With a clearly defined audience coveted by advertisers, the blog can attract higher-paying advertisers than more generic websites.

 

Steps to Set Up a News Blog

Here’s how to start a targeted news blog site.

  1. Select a Specific Topic or Area of Interest

The more specific you can get, the better. Instead of “online business” which is a hugely crowded market, a much more specific website would be a blog about “raising venture capital for an online business.”

You can also target specific locations. For example, “San Francisco Restaurant Blog” has a very good chance of making its way around the SF foodie network. It would also be popular with people who travel and want to know what is available in the location.

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  1. Stay on Top of Current Events in Your Field

It’s crucial if you’re blogging about a specific interest that you stay on top of the industry. There are a few ways to do this.

  • Subscribe to RSS feeds from various blogs in your industry. Whenever a piece of news hits one of these blogs, you should be the first to know.

 

  • Use a news and website aggregator like “Your Version” to stay on top of non-blog websites.

 

  • Set Up a Google Alert for your topic. This is similar to a news clipping service that leads you to the latest article published on the web.

 

 

  1. Write with Personality and Insight

Let your personality out and let your thoughts be known. In many markets, what’s being talked about has been beaten to death so many times that people choose blogs based more on the personality than the news they carry.

Of course, you still have to provide Grade A content. This often comes in the form of your own personal insights rather than just facts. One great example is the “Rich Jerk” website. The Rich Jerk isn’t teaching anything that the Internet marketing community doesn’t know. In fact, it’s very basic information. But his personality is so interesting and so insulting that people can’t help but read the entire website – and by that time feel like they have to buy.

PPC

 

  1. Apply Proven Marketing Techniques

 

Make your website search engine friendly. Start building an email list. Find other people in your industry that would be willing to work with you and share joint information that both audiences would appreciate

 

Make Money with Your Online News Blog

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There are several ways to generate revenues to your site.

  • Add Google AdSense: This is a good beginning by letting Google, Bing or other services place an ad on your blog. When people click onto the ad, you get paid. Rates vary according to the keyword.

 

  • Sell ad placement on a prominent site in a specific industry: For example, if you own a health website, you might be getting $5 for every click through rate (CPM) from Google. But an advertiser who sees your site as good branding to be associated with might be willing to pay as much as $15 CPM – sometimes more.

 

  • Sell Banner Ads “Above the Fold:” This term harks back to newspapers where the most visible ad appeared above where the newspaper is folded. For blogs, the area is immediately after the heading. These advertisers are willing to pay a monthly rate for a specified period of time.

  

Starting a targeted news or blog site is a great way to build a solid reputation in an industry. You can make more money than a broader website, with less work to boot.

 

EXTRA! EXTRA! READ ALL ABOUT IT!

Watch for the new series on Blogging for Retirees, a series to help retirees start and make money online with a blog.

Did you like this post? Leave a comment below. Don’t forget to vote “Like” on Facebook and “Thumbs Up” on Google+ and YouTube.

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