Two Tips to Start Promoting Your Business Online

Everyone is trying to promote their business online – from the mom-and-pop retailer to the big-name brands like Macy’s and Sony. Don’t be discouraged by the deluge of promotions and options out there. This article is not a do-it-all guide, but it will offer you some key points on how to get started.

1. Identify Your Market- Do They Use Facebook or Craigslist?

The above is not an either/or, but it’s an example of the way you should be thinking as a business owner. Identifying your market is always difficult, but if you’ve already done this, you’ll know where on the internet you’re going to want to spend a majority of your time and money. One of the rages in today’s digital world is “social media”. While it’s necessary for you (yes, necessary!) to have a Twitter, LinkedIn, and Facebook, don’t go overboard. Keep in mind that the majority of Facebook users are savvy youths who are keenly aware that they are being advertised to. If your services and products are for 15-28 year old’s, Facebook ads and promotions are a good place to explore. If your services and products are for those in their 30s-60s, Craigslist is a cheaper alternative. Online advertising is expensive, and in order to use this money wisely, it’s going to be best for you to target where you will get the most bang for your buck.

2. Learn Basic HTML

This is, believe it or not, easier than it seems. Take a tutorial. The reason for this is that you’re going to want to start generating landing pages for your sales and services. What is a landing page? Go to Craigslist, look in financial services, and click on one of the links. Generally, these pages will show up in the ad or pop-up when you click it. A landing page is basically a sales page that is looking to entice your audience to learn more. Design your landing page according to your target market. For teens, something flashier is necessary. For adults, something more streamlined will do the trick. Again, you don’t have to go overboard with HTML. There are plenty of free tutorials online. Most landing pages simply need a few images, color, and a title to pique interest.

These two tips go hand in hand. You’re going to start marketing. And good marketing is going to start with landing pages that are directly targeted to your audience. Unlike the luxury of a TV commercial or print ad, you’re going to have to be extremely specific. There are millions of people marketing online. Get started with these two tips and you will be ahead of the game.

Living in the Present Moment

Many of us have heard the expression “living in the present moment” or “living in the Now.” Spiritual teachers tell us to treat each moment like it’s our only one in existence. Eckhart Tolle teaches that living in the present moment means having awareness and presence in our current reality. Edgar Cayce discusses how we can implement this concept into our every day lives on a regular basis.

In the “Edgar Cayce Companion” book Edgar talks about how in order not to be swayed by uncertainties that come our way, and as we all know life can be very unpredictable, we need to contain an unshifting ideal. What he is not referring to is a set belief on how things should or shouldn’t be. In the book “Courage, the Joy of Living Dangerously” the author, Osho teaches that when you function out of assumptions the conclusion protects you. There is a big difference between a conclusion and an ideal. When one comes to a set conclusion about his reality it gives him security, safety and establishes a well defined comfort zone. A comfort zone is the egoic mind believing that it is a separate entity. The illusion of believing that we are separate identities causes us to find something to latch onto whether it’s a certain image, status, money…etc.

Edgar Cayce refers to an ideal that will always exist no matter how high the tide. For Osho it was the courage to function without conclusions which instilled in him the power to be alive, open and spontaneous. Edgar doesn’t specify which ideal he’s talking about because he wants you to find it in yourself. He holds very high beliefs on the notion that “Direction must come from Within.” It’s inevitable that the more we are aligned with our higher self-our piece of the Source, the more we will want to merge with the source of which that piece came from. What comes with that is feeling the connection with the rest of the universe as they are all pieces of the same Source. In essence, living in the moment means to attain the awareness of feeling a closer connection with your higher self. This will manifest in increased appreciation for all internal and external circumstances that surround you at that very moment. So why do so many of us find it so difficult to live in the present moment? Edgar Cayce explains it best: “the individuality of a soul must be lost in the personality of God.” The ironic part is that the more we become individuated and trust in our innate natures via our intuition via our piece of the Source the more we practice “dvekut” which is the Kabbalistic word for becoming one with Source.

We live in this world to develop the capabilities of being able to discern between forces and energies that can either shift us towards our Higher Self or away from it. Once we master the power of discernment and choose to follow our intuition then we inevitably merge back with the Source that we came from and that we essentially are. It has been said in every religion that the meaning behind this game we call life is to will our way back to our original Oneness by the powers of choice and discernment. In its totality our souls will only become One again after fully realizing and being conscious of what being One is not. It is through experiencing the reality of opposites that we are here to fully appreciate exactly what it’s contrasting in the vastness of time, space and limited conditions.

Living in the present moment is appreciating and recognizing something for the first time like you’ve never done before. If we think of the word “appreciation” it bestows the message of receiving a new found level of awareness resulting in the feeling of gratitude. If we think about leaving our comfort zone in order to live in the present moment it can feel scary for us because it is a form of forsaking our established identities. But if we realize that living in the moment is actually connecting back to our true core nature, that which we really are, then we can readily shift to this new paradigm of perception.

We are exactly where we are supposed to be right now at this very moment even if we are not living in the present moment. The world gives us several opportunities to rediscover ourselves through the reality of opposites. This is a crucial time to ask ourselves what our intent is behind everything we do. Honesty and the right intentions can help us shift to a state of higher consciousness, or in other words, of living in the present moment.

Public Speaking Presentation Techniques

Preparation, Presentation, Persuasion are the key ingredients when you are speaking to 10 or 500 people. Your audience will judge your presentation within 30 seconds; 55% by your body language, 38% the quality of your voice and 7% the words you say. The most effective way to communicate to your audience is with accuracy and energy.

55% of how people perceive you is body language:
* Look at your audience, glancing at your notes only occasionally.
* Step out from behind the lectern or podium to make yourself accessible to the audience.
* Use your hands to emphasize a point, otherwise relax them at your side.
* Use flowing movements. Rocking side to side indicates insecurity.
* Smile and be dramatic or humorous when appropriate. It denotes you are a multi-faceted person.
* If you need notes make them on 5 x 7 index cards; not paper because it’s noisy. Use black ink for your main bullet points and red or another color for sub-points. Number the top corner of the cards.
* Place a glass of lukewarm water near your notes (cold closes your throat).
* If you blank out and forget a point, take a sip of water and check your notes.

38% of how people perceive you is by your voice inflection:
* Practice your speech out loud repeatedly. Eliminate umms, ahs and maybes. A pause is more powerful. If you connect your name and your company together: “Hi, I’m Bill Smith and my company is XYZ”, it would not be as effective as “Hi, I’m Bill Smith. (pause) The name of my company is (pause) XYZ.” This method draws the listener’s attention toward what you will say next. Pausing also helps the listener to digest what you have said before you go on speaking.
* Female speakers, lower your pitch.

7% of how people perceive you is by your words:
* Eliminate words like if, someday, but, problem, issue. If you have a problem, mention it once, and then go into conclusions, results, answers and solutions.
* Use powerful words: memorable, colossal, limitless, family, friendly and excellence.
* Opening your speech is your chance to attract your listeners attention. A powerful technique is to open with a statement or question to get them focused on you and your presentation. An eloquent analogy or comparison to preface what you intend to say is an audience grabber.
* Closing your speech is another opportunity to create a call to action finish for your audience in. You could end by using an famous quotation, or a slogan or a story that sums up your topic.

Your audience is rooting for you. They want to benefit from what you have to say. Practice your speech standing up, record yourself, play it back and have friends or family critique you. Take deep breaths and realize that nervousness is normal. The secret to giving an excellent speech is to commit, prepare and rehearse. Have fun, make audience eye contact, project your voice clearly and be committed to what you are saying.