The Power of Video to Sell Your Products and Services

Today I was talking with a New York Times bestselling author. He was explaining to me how he had used video to drive his most recent book onto the best sellers list. “Nothing sells like video,” he explained.

Many authors have done this in the past few years, including Brendon Burchard, Gary Vaynerchuck and Chris Brogan.

10 Ways to Generate More Blog Traffic

Whenever I speak on the topic of platform-building, someone always asks, “How can I generate more traffic for my blog?” Most are hoping I have a silver bullet, something that will instantly get them the recognition they deserve.

A Big Traffic Jam - Photo courtesy of ©iStockphoto.com/burwellphotography, Image #18043823

Photo courtesy of ©iStockphoto.com/burwellphotography

The bad news is that it’s not quite that simple. Rome wasn’t built in a day and neither is a platform. It takes doing several things right—and doing them over a long period of time.

12 Ways to Get More Twitter Followers

I rarely meet a Twitter user who doesn’t want more followers. A few argue that the numbers aren’t important. They are only concerned with “quality followers.” I’m not sure it is either/or, but I notice that most of the people making this argument have very few followers.

Businessman Illustrating How to Get More Followers - Photo courtesy of ©iStockphoto.com/matspersson0, Image #17932026

Photo courtesy of ©iStockphoto.com/matspersson0

Why would you want more followers? Three reasons:

  1. More followers provide social authority. Like any other ranking system, the higher your follower count, the more people assume you are an expert—or at least someone interesting. It may not be valid, but it’s the way it works in a world where there is a ranked list for everything.

Top Posts and Commenters for December 2011

In case you missed them, here are my top ten posts for December 2011, along with my top ten commenters. I am sending each of the top commenters a free copy of Nearing Home: Life, Faith, and Finishing Well by Billy Graham. It is currently on the New York Times Best Sellers list.

Wordle Graphic for December 2011

Graphic courtesy of Wordle.net

Here are my top ten posts:

Wanted: Community Leaders to Help Manage My Blog

The volume of my blog comments has increased dramatically in the past year. I am so grateful for the robust community that has developed here. People often tell me that they find the comments as helpful as the posts. I agree.

A Crowd of People Interacting - Photo courtesy of ©iStockphoto.com/Photomorphic, Image #17146139

Photo courtesy of ©iStockphoto.com/Photomorphic

As a result, I read every comment and respond to as many as I can. However, this is currently taking me about ten hours a week.

Social Media Tools That Will Save You Time

If you are serious about building a platform, you must be actively engaged in social media. Whether it is Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+—or all four—you need to develop a tribe of loyal followers and super fans who want to hear what you have to say.

HootSuite Dashboard

But who has the time? Social media can become a full-time job if you are not careful! And this leaves little time for doing your real job, whether it is writing, composing, programming, or doing something else.

How to Get a Ton of New Subscribers to Your Blog

The goal of marketing is to attract more customers. Businesses make an enormous investment to get people in the doors the first time. But what happens after that?

A Digital Envelope - Photo courtesy of ©iStockphoto.com/PashaIgnatov, Image #16463161

If the customer walks out the door, never to return, the investment is wasted. “Blood on the ground,” as they say. Instead, marketers want the customer to come back—and, hopefully, bring a few friends.

The Beginner’s Guide to Twitter

I originally wrote this post in May 2008. I have learned a lot since then. Twitter has also changed since then. I have updated this post to reflect both.

This post is a 20-minute guide to Twitter for non-techies. If you don’t know what Twitter is, start with my first post on the topic, Twitter-dee, Twitter-dum. If you still aren’t convinced it’s worth your time, then read my 12 Reasons to Start Twittering.

A Finger About to Click on the iPhone Twitter App - Photo courtesy of ©iStockphoto.com/ymgerman, Image #17221776

Photo courtesy of ©iStockphoto.com/ymgerman

Over the last few years, I have helped several friends and a few family members get setup on Twitter. I found myself explaining the basics over and over again, so I decided to write a simple, step-by-step guide.

13 Blog Post Ideas for Novelists

In case you are new here, I am a big advocate of blogging. I don’t know of a better way to build a platform than starting with a blog as your “homebase” and building from there. This is especially true for authors.

Row of Matches About to Catch Fire - Photo courtesy of ©iStockphoto.com/JamesBrey, Image #8023692

Photo courtesy of ©iStockphoto.com/JamesBrey

Occasionally, when I speak on the topic of social media, I get push-back from novelists. “Yes, a blog maybe great for non-fiction authors, but what about novelists? What can we write about?”

How to Monetize Your Blog without Selling Your Soul

I didn’t start blogging to make money from it. The thought never occurred to me. When someone suggested I start accepting advertising, I resisted. I thought some how it would compromise my integrity.

Cash Coming Out of a Computer - Photo courtesy of ©iStockphoto.com/JoKMedia, Image #13923134

Photo courtesy of ©iStockphoto.com/JoKMedia

Then I realized that all professional creatives charge for their work. In fact, this is what separates the professionals from the amateurs. For example: