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A quick recap of #ForgeAhead2014

Last week, we held our first daylong seminar in front of a sold out crowd of business owners and go-getters. We called it #ForgeAhead2014 (because anything with a hashtag in front of it sounds cool). Since not all of you were able to make it, I wanted to share a quick recap of what we covered, complete with a bunch of links to some very slick web-based services and apps you may want to check out. Enjoy!

The Movement

“The Movement is bigger than any one person or company. We are The Movement. All of us. Likeminded go-getters taking on the world.”

All Roads Lead Home(page)

Your website is often the first impression people have of you and your company. Make sure yours is ready-to-go with this simple checklist: 

  • The 3-and-3 Test – People should know what you do within 3 seconds of seeing your website homepage. One of the best ways to accomplish this is by having (1) a big headline, (2) an intro sentence (or two), and then (3) the main content.
  • Credibility Indicators – Immediately build trust by highlighting achievements such as industry accolades, happy customers and/or media partners.
  • Responsive Design – How does your website respond to mobile devices? With over 60% of web traffic deriving from mobile devices, it’s more important than ever to have a responsive website.
  • Sharing Content – One of the best ways to drive traffic to your website is by sharing relevant content. Writing blogs and sharing them via email and social media usually results in a significant spike in web traffic.
  • Landing Pages – A simple way to capture email addresses is with a dedicated landing page. These can be created for campaigns or specific promotions, and typically perform best with a giveaway. Check out http://unbouncepages.com and https://www.leadpages.net to learn more.
  • Technical Bits Google Analytics should be installed on all websites to track performance. Zopim is a live chat option worth considering. Inspectlet allows you to view sessions taking place on your website to determine how your page is being navigated by visitors. Cool stuff!

The Social Web, Paid Ads & Building Relationships

Platforms like Facebook and LinkedIn are now charging you to reach your target audience. Keep these tips in mind as you develop your social media strategy: 

  • Consider the greater marketing strategy. Facebook (or any other platform) is just one option that can help achieve a larger objective.
  • Develop creative campaigns to reach your target audience. Collect email addresses when you can so that you can stay in touch with people.
  • Leverage existing relationships to grow your reach!

The Cloud and the Future of Business

Today’s web-based technology is incredibly powerful. Here are a few options to explore:

APPsolute Timesavers

There are only so many hours in the day. Here are a few apps that may help: