Sunday, November 15th, 2020

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Seattle's New Theory of Crime

A City Council proposal would justify misdemeanors committed under ‘duress.’

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New York's Kids Aren't All Right

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How to Use Crowdfunding to Start a Business in a Recession – Amazing!

The Fantastic Way to Use Crowdfunding to Start a Business in a Recession and Get the Financing You Need – Even if the Economy Tanks

Crowdfunding has become all the rage and it’s not surprising. It’s (generally) free money which you do not have to repay. And you can get these funds without needing to give up any ownership or control over your small business. Additionally it can help you to determine the popularity of an idea or a prototype or invention. Because there is no sense in continuing if there is no interest in your design. Still, a lot of entrepreneurs can use crowdfunding to start a business in a recession.

You will need to make a lot of choices before you even launch a startup crowdfunding campaign. And this goes double in an economic downturn.

Use Crowdfunding to Start a Business in a Recession: How Much?

Your very first decision should be: just how much do I need to crowdfund? If you need $1 million, you are going to need to crowdfund more than that. Why? Because that is how crowdfunding platforms make their money– they take a percentage of any money you can raise. Thus, you will need to take that into consideration. Crowdfunding percent charges vary from 4% to 10%.

Use Crowdfunding to Start a Business in a Recession

Discover our business credit and finance guide, jam-packed with new ways to finance your business without emptying your wallet. Save your money during the recession!

Use Crowdfunding to Start a Business in a Recession: Will I Succeed?

Another decision has to do with how successful you think your campaign will be. If you are extremely confident that you will be 100% funded at the end of your campaign, then traditional funding is for you. If you are not sure, then try GoFundMe’s flexible funding.

With flexible funding, you, the campaign runner, can keep your donations even if your campaign falls short. However, for this benefit, you will have to pay a higher fee to GoFundMe. Other crowdfunding platforms like Kickstarter don’t offer this option.

Use Crowdfunding to Start a Business in a Recession: What Should I Offer for Perks?

Yes, you will have to offer perks to your donors. Perks can take many forms– buttons, tees, book marks – every one of those are possible tangible perks. Consider a perk format which can sync with your business. If you sell homemade jam, then perhaps create a unique flavor just for the campaign, and offer bigger and bigger-sized jars depending on donation amount.

If you are a horseback riding stable, offer a complimentary lesson or a postcard with a favorite horse’s image on it, or something like that. Does your startup flip houses? Then consider offering a coupon to a neighborhood home supply company (work with them beforehand, of course) or the like.

Pro Tip on Perks

Physical perks are a pain! A lot of people love them, and they will stand out. However, you also have to ship physical perks. International shipping is extremely expensive, even for small items. So if you offer physical perks, specify whether you will allow international donor addresses.

Even if everything has to be shipped in the US, you are still left with working with a data base of names and addresses (a few of which might have misprints or be incomplete) and usually a range of available perks. Did Jane want the stuffed teddy bear or the book mark? Did Alan want the pennant or the tee shirt? Do Jane and Alan live at the same address so perhaps you could mail their perks out together? What if a perk is lost or broken in the mail? And what if it injures someone?

Because of this, if you can do it, try for digital perks. For a house flipping startup, you might record video footage about home design or repair. For a pastry shop, you could offer downloads of recipes. And for a health club, maybe offer digital coupons for a free month of membership.

Use Crowdfunding to Start a Business in a Recession

Discover our business credit and finance guide, jam-packed with new ways to finance your business without emptying your wallet. Save your money during the recession!

Use Crowdfunding to Start a Business in a Recession: Your Campaign

Your campaign’s success is far from assured. However, you can capitalize on a few proven approaches. First off consider these four feelings that you need to engender in donors. Use one or more of them as the focal point of your campaign as a starting point.

Urgency

The first two and last two days of a crowdfunding campaign are pretty much always the days with the biggest payoffs. Often, lengthening the campaign doesn’t make you significantly more money. So why not open a campaign for only a week? Don’t let donors feel they can contribute any old time they feel like it.

Scarcity

If you have thousands of something or other to supply as a perk, it will not be as desirable. If you only have a few copies of a specific perk, that will instill a feeling in some potential donors that they just have to have it. Do this with your larger donation levels only. Therefore, you might want to establish a perk/donation level system similar to this:

Donation Level Number of Perks
Lowest 1,000
Second lowest 500 (reward also incorporates lowest level reward)
Second highest 50 (reward also includes two lower level rewards)
Highest 10 (reward also incorporates all other levels’ rewards)

Remember: a lot of variety in physical perks will make fulfillment a lot harder, so don’t work with greater than maybe five separate varieties of physical perks– and even that is pushing it.

Novelty

If you are offering the identical thing as a thousand other places, no one will want to make a donation. Your widget needs to be lighter, hotter, cheaper, or more resilient. Your food should be reduced in calories or higher in nutrition or better-tasting. Or your professional services need to be delivered better or quicker, by friendlier and more skilled employees. And it should come with a money back guarantee your competition does not provide.

Cool factor

Is your product a work of art? Is it a new, gadget-like innovation? Then it may have a coolness aspect which you can construct your campaign around. But don’t be discouraged if it isn’t! These days, some of the most unforgettable advertising campaigns are based around a product the majority of people found uninspiring not ten years ago– insurance.

Use Crowdfunding to Start a Business in a Recession: Crowdfunding Strategy

A few words on strategy:

Your Pitch Video Will Need to be Great

Use an expert to film it and develop the script. Are you unable to pay for experts? Then try schools, both pupils and educators. Your script doesn’t need to be verbatim but you should have points you wish to make and not babble. Write a script and stay with it. This is not the right time to ad-lib.

If You Have Tangible Evidence of Your Project, then Make Sure to Present it

Put it in your campaign video and on your campaign page. This means a picture of your health spa’s sign or a short video clip of your prototype robot. A number of people are naturally doubtful about crowdfunding. An image and a tangible thing will go a long way to assuring them that your project isn’t vaporware.

Manners Matter

Say please, thank you, and you’re welcome to everyone. Use these magic words in your pitch and in your communications with your donors, even in the cover letters you deliver with your perks (even internet perks can include a cover email message). You do not have to be servile, but you absolutely must be diplomatic.

In particular, be courteous when you want to use crowdfunding to start a business in a recession. After all, you have no idea what people may be going through.

Don’t be Greedy!

If you need $250,000 for your campaign, but you call for $1,000,000, that will not do anyone any good. You’ll just look like you want to leech off other peoples’ generosity. Instead, explain your expenses as plainly and transparently as possible.

And incidentally, if you misuse your funding, you may end up in an unpleasant meeting with your state’s attorney general. So be truthful!

Use Crowdfunding to Start a Business in a Recession

Discover our business credit and finance guide, jam-packed with new ways to finance your business without emptying your wallet. Save your money during the recession!

Your Stretch Goals Should be a Combination of Readily Achievable and Pie in the Sky

If you are crowdfunding for $100,000, a reasonably easy to attain stretch goal is $125,000. Pie in the sky going to be more like $300,000.

Make it abundantly clear what you will do with any added money if you are fortunate enough to get it. Will you buy the property your startup is in? Employ five more people? Replace your old equipment? Launch a brand-new market on another continent? Let your donors know what you are pursuing, so they can dream with you.

Be Gracious if Your Campaign Fails

Even if you use GoFundMe’s flexible funding option, you still may not receive enough to make an appreciable dent in your funding requirements. If you wanted $100,000 and you just got $500, your best option is to simply give back the money.

If you nearly made it with $95,000, then thank everybody who donated. And see what you can possibly do, although there’s a deficiency. And let them know what you are doing! Maybe you’ll purchase your building next year, or hire four people rather than five.

Once more; give your donors a stake in and an inside look at your startup. This will enable them to feel invested. And they may just opt to make up the deficiency themselves. Even if your crowdfunding campaign concludes does not mean a donor cannot send a check or buy extra goods or services. If that comes about, then politeness is essential.

Start a Business in a Recession with Crowdfunding Credit Suite

Use Crowdfunding to Start a Business in a Recession

Line up the Most Significant and Most Dependable Donors You Can Before You Start

Tell your mother or your brother in law or your former high school soccer coach to postpone on handing over their $1,000 or $10,000 donation till you start your campaign.

And ask them (nicely!) to release their donation at a very precise time. Which time? The initial or final day of the campaign (split the funds as well as you can. If the split isn’t around half and half, then request the larger chunk of donations to come on the very last day of the campaign.

Make the most of the novelty factor of the first day of the campaign, or the urgency factor of the very last. Just like a busker with a couple of her own bucks in her hat, to motivate people to toss in a few bucks for a song, you want your biggest donors to demonstrate to other donors that they believe in you and in your project. And you also want them to suggest your other donors that they had best get in on investing in your startup before the opportunity ends.

Share Your Campaign on Social Media

And ask your family and friends to do so, too. Tweet the link. Incorporate it as a Facebook status. Make it a Tumblr post or a snap on Snapchat or create a blog post about it. Ask your network to publicize the link.

The most effective technique to get your network to help you out is by assisting them in return. If your relative’s rock band is on Facebook, share their page, or tweet about it.

Be a collaborative member of your own personal network. And then your contacts will be more likely to help you out when you ask.

And rerun these social media postings. Considering time zones and our all-too hectic lives, people may not see your message the first time around. Mix it up and deliver it at odd hours (you can oftentimes use scheduling software such as HootSuite for this), including what is the middle of the night where you live.

Use Crowdfunding to Start a Business in a Recession: Pay it Forward

Finally, if your small business crowdfunding campaign succeeds, think about donating a few dollars to others’ campaigns. Because your business goodwill and a good reputation are priceless. And you never know when the economic pendulum will swing the other way.

The post How to Use Crowdfunding to Start a Business in a Recession – Amazing! appeared first on Credit Suite.

How to Buy a Domain Name

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Buying a domain name is one of the first steps to launching a website. 

But finding the perfect domain for your site and registering that domain can feel like a tall task if you’ve never been through this process. Fortunately, domain registration isn’t that difficult—you just need to follow a few simple steps.

Throughout my career, I’ve bought a lot of domains—too many to count. Some of those experiences were significantly better than others.  

This guide will explain my two favorite ways to buy a domain; one of those methods will even get you a free domain. I’ll also cover the differences between these options in greater detail and explain how to buy a premium domain. Let’s dive in.

How to Buy a Domain Name With Bluehost

Bluehost is a web hosting provider. In fact, they are one of the most reputable and reliable web hosts on the market today. More than two million sites across the globe are hosted by Bluehost.

But Bluehost also provides domain registration services. If you use Bluehost for web hosting, you’ll get a free domain for one year. 

Since you need a hosting plan anyways, you can use Bluehost as a one-stop-shop to bundle hosting and domain registration into a single package. This is a great option for beginners starting a new website from scratch. 

Step #1 – Navigate to Bluehost.com

The first step is easy. Just make your way over to the Bluehost website.

From here, scan the menu and select “Hosting” at the top of the screen. 

I’ll say it again; click HOSTING. Do not click on the “Domains” menu option. 

If you click on the latter, you won’t be bundling your hosting plan with domain registration, which defeats the purpose of using Bluehost (and you won’t get the domain for free).

Step #2 – Choose a Hosting Plan

The hosting menu will expand and present you with three different options:

  • Shared Hosting
  • Dedicated Hosting
  • VPS Hosting

Shared hosting will be the best option for 99% of people starting a new website. So go ahead and select that from the expanded drop-down menu. 

You’ll still be able to bundle your hosting plan and domain registration (and get a free domain) if you select dedicated or VPS, but most of you won’t need to worry about that right now; stick with shared hosting.  

Bluehost offers four different shared web hosting plans to choose from—Basic, Plus, Choice Plus, and Pro:

If you’re launching a small personal site, the Basic entry-level plan starting at $3.95 per month should be fine for you. For those of you launching a site for your business, I’d go with the Choice Plus plan, at a minimum. 

The extra features that come with this plan are worth the few extra bucks per month. 

To continue, just click the “Select” button under the plan that fits your needs.

Step #3 – Register Your Domain

Once you choose a web hosting plan, Bluehost will automatically prompt you to set up your domain. You’ll be presented with two different options here:

  • Create a new domain
  • Use a domain you own

You’ll want to use the “Create a new domain” option to search for available domains.

Simply enter the domain you want to buy into the search bar and choose your domain extension (.com, .net, .blog, .biz, .info, .store, .co, .us, etc.). 

In the vast majority of cases, you’re going to want a .com extension. The only reason why I’d consider an alternative domain extension is if the .com domain is taken. For example, if you try to create a domain using nike.com or apple.com, those will obviously be unavailable. But a different extension might be available for purchase.

So if you’re set on a name, you could always get an alternative extension in the meantime while you figure out how to buy the .com extension. I’ll explain how to buy domains that have already been registered in greater detail later in this guide (although you probably won’t be able to buy Nike or Apple).

Another reason to consider an alternative domain extension is the price. Lots of these extensions will be cheaper than a .com domain.

For a small blog, side project, or personal site, that’s fine if you want to save a few dollars. But businesses should always register a .com domain.

Step #4 – Finalize Your Contract

Once you’ve chosen an available domain name, simply create your Bluehost account and select your plan terms.

Definitely make sure you get “Domain Privacy + Protection” located in the “Package Extras” section. Otherwise, your name, email, phone number, and address will all become available on a public database. It’s well worth the extra $0.99 per month. 

The other options, like SiteLock Security and Codeguard Basic, are up to you. I’d get them, but there are alternative third-party services out there that you can use for site backups and security. I think it’s just easier to get them now.

That’s it! 

Once you enter your payment details, your hosting plan and new domain purchase will be finalized. Your domain name is free for the first year of your contract. 

How to Buy a Domain Name With Namecheap

The market is flooded with domain registrars. But Namecheap is definitely my favorite. It’s super easy for anyone to buy a domain using this registrar, even if it’s your first time.

This method is a bit more straightforward than using Bluehost, only because you’re not bundling any other services—Namecheap is strictly for buying a domain. 

The entire process can be completed in just three quick steps.

Step #1 – Visit Namecheap.com

Obviously, the first thing you need to do is make your way over the Namecheap website.

From here, you can search for your domain directly from the homepage.

Enter your desired domain name into the search bar, which can be found in the center of the screen. 

Make sure that “Register” is toggled above that search bar. The “Transfer” option is made for people who have an existing domain and want to switch registrars—that’s not for you. 

Click the search icon to continue. 

Step #2 – Choose Your Extension

As a domain registrar, Namecheap offers an extensive list of domain extensions. 

You’ll have the option to choose from things like .fun, .vip, .studio, .health, .xyz, .lol, .design, and hundreds of other extensions. But in most cases, choosing a .com extension will be your best bet. 

Just click the “Add to cart” button next to the extensions you want and then checkout.

Step #3 – Confirm Your Order

When you’re buying a domain directly from a domain registrar, you can skip all of the extras. You won’t need an SSL certificate, professional email, or anything else. You’ll be able to get that from your web hosting provider.

Definitely make sure you have WhoisGuard enabled. This protects your personal information from being available to the public. Some domain registrars make you pay extra for this, but Namecheap offers it free forever. 

Turn on “auto-renew” for your domain registration as well. Otherwise, you’ll have to renew it manually every year, which puts you at risk for the registration lapsing. 

It’s that easy! 

Once you confirm the order, you’ll be asked to create a Namecheap account. After you enter your payment details and finalize the purchase, the domain is yours. 

Ways to Buy a Domain Name

Generally speaking, there are two main ways to buy a domain name. Both of which have been covered above—domain registrars and hosting providers. 

There are pros and cons to each method, and the process for each one is very different.

I’ll quickly explain the differences between these options so you can figure out which one is the best choice for your website. 

Buying a Domain From a Standalone Domain Registrar

In most cases, going directly to a domain registrar like Namecheap will be your best option. As the name implies, these platforms specialize in domain registration. 

Buying domains directly from a standalone registrar will be faster than alternative methods. That’s because you’re not bundling other services, so the process is more direct.

Domain registrars also make it easier to buy domains in bulk. So if you’re in the market for more than a single domain, definitely go with a registrar. 

If you want alternative extensions, domain registrars will offer significantly more options. While I typically don’t recommend anything other than a .com domain, some of you might want to browse through hundreds of alternative extensions. 

Transferring domain names with a registrar is also easier than using a service that doesn’t specialize in domain registration. So if you want to transfer your domain or think you might want to transfer it in the future, use a domain registrar.

It’s usually cheaper to buy domains directly from a registrar. For starters, the domain itself will likely be less expensive. But the best registrars, like Namecheap, include WhoisGuard protection for free with the purchase of a domain. You probably won’t get that from a hosting company. 

The downside of getting your domain from a registrar is that there’s an extra step in the process. You’ll still have to get web hosting elsewhere. 

Buying a Domain From a Web Hosting Company

For the most part, domain registration and web hosting should be kept separately. Bluehost is the exception to this rule. So if you want to bundle your domain name with a hosting plan, Bluehost is really the only option to consider.

There are a couple of main reasons why you’d go this route.

For beginners who are new to the world of web hosting and domain registration, getting everything under one roof is just easier. It’s less steps, and you can manage your hosting plan and domain name from a single account. 

Furthermore, Bluehost gives you a free domain name for one year. You’ll never get a deal like that from a domain registrar. 

But getting a domain from a hosting provider isn’t ideal if you want to buy domains in bulk. It’s fine for a single domain, but beyond that, it gets messy. You also won’t have as many options for alternative extensions (if you want something unique). 

Most web hosting providers will also charge you extra for domain privacy + protection, whereas you can get this for free from a domain registrar. 

How to Buy a Premium Domain

Premium domains are a great way to stand out online. They are great for branding and marketing purposes as well.

What is a premium domain?

A premium domain is typically short, memorable, and easy to spell. High-quality domains have a high search volume and are closely associated with an industry, service, or topic. They also have TLDs (top-level domains) like .com, .org, or .net. 

Premium domains are in high demand. So they’ll typically cost a bit more to register. The process of buying a premium domain can be different as well since it’s not always clear if the domain is actually for sale. Here’s what I mean.

Let’s say you try to register a premium domain from a domain registrar or hosting company. Just because it says “unavailable,” that doesn’t necessarily mean that it can’t be acquired. These are the steps for buying a premium domain:

Step #1 – Determine if the Domain Seems Attainable

If a domain is unavailable from a registrar, try going directly to that website and see what you find. If there’s an active website or business using that domain, it might be tougher to acquire. 

But if you don’t see an active site, there’s a good chance that domain will be for sale.

Here’s an example for management.com:

Clearly, not much is happening on this site. So if you wanted this premium domain, there is a pretty good indication here that it’s for sale. 

In some cases, you’ll even see text like “buy this domain” or information that says “this domain might be for sale.” All of these are good signs that the domain is attainable.

Step #2 – Find Out Who Owns the Domain

There are two ways to complete this step:

  • Figure it out on your own
  • Hire a domain broker to do it for you

Doing it on your own can be tricky. You could run a quick WHOIS lookup, but most people won’t have their personal information listed. Using Google to your advantage can be helpful. Some domains might be linked to another website or social media profile. You could potentially find the owner that way.

Personally, I’d recommend using a broker. Sedo is one of my favorite domain marketplaces and brokerage sites.

Brokers can almost always find out who owns the domain because they have such a massive network. They’ll determine if the domain is actually for sale and how much the seller is asking for. Your broker can even handle the negotiations on your behalf.

The downside of using a broker is that you’ll have to pay a brokerage fee. But in most cases, you’ll only have to pay if the sale actually goes through.

Other great places to find a premium domain online include:

If a domain is for sale, you’ll be able to get the ball rolling with Sedo or one of the other options listed above.

Step #3 – Negotiate and Buy

Often times, the listing price of a premium domain can be negotiable. If you think it’s a fair price and fits well within your budget, you can speed up the buying process by offering the asking price in full.

If a domain is in high-demand, this also increases your chances of securing it before someone else makes a better offer.

But in some cases, domains can be outrageously priced. You need to ask yourself if it’s actually worth the cost. Sometimes you might be better off just looking for another domain. Unless a certain domain is crucial to the success of your business, it can be tough to justify a five or six-figure listing price. 

Don’t be afraid to walk away during the negotiation process. If it’s not meant to be, you can move on or try again at a later time. This is also another reason why it’s helpful to have a broker.

Step #4 – Transfer the Domain

Once the domain has been purchased, the final step is transferring it to your domain registrar. Again, I recommend Namecheap.com for this because it’s so easy. 

Make sure you turn on the auto-renewal after the transfer. Otherwise, you’ll have to worry about manually renewing your domain each year. If you forget and the name lapses, your premium domain could be up for grabs on the open market.

The process is officially complete when you see the domain sitting inside of your domain registrar account. Now you can finally rest easy knowing that you’ve secured your premium domain.

How to Buy a Domain Name That’s Not For Sale

Not every premium domain will be available on a brokerage site or domain marketplace. But if you really want to pursue a specific domain, you still might have a chance.

Similar to the steps we took in the last section, you’ll need to figure out who owns the domain. If a domain isn’t for sale, this step should be a bit easier, and you can probably do it on your own. 

Most domains that aren’t for sale will be linked to an active website. That site should have some sort of contact information on it. You can reach out directly to get in contact with the business owner or decision-maker associated with the domain. 

Start with a general inquiry saying that you’re interested in buying the domain; don’t throw an offer out there just yet (or you could end up overpaying). 

See what type of response you get and if the site owner is willing to sell. Unlike a premium domain that’s listed on a domain marketplace, you might have to dig a bit deeper into your pockets to buy a domain that’s not currently for sale. 

If it’s absolutely imperative that you secure this particular domain, consider making the owner an offer that they can’t refuse. 

Just be aware that this won’t always work. It’s like trying to buy a house that’s not for sale. You can knock on the front door and make a cash offer, but the homeowner might decide to stay put.

If they’re willing to sell, use a broker to make sure the purchase goes smoothly. Then immediately transfer that domain to your registrar after you obtain ownership.

Summary

Buying a domain name doesn’t need to be that complicated.

Even beginners and first-time buyers can complete this process in just a few minutes by following the step-by-step instructions explained in this guide.

Buying a premium domain might take a bit longer. But again, you can still make it happen by following the process I’ve outlined above. Good luck and happy buying!

The post How to Buy a Domain Name appeared first on Neil Patel.

How to Use Quizzes in Your Marketing Strategy

quizzes in marketing

Using quizzes in your marketing strategy is one of the most underrated marketing moves.

Seriously. 

They are incredibly effective at generation leads, engaging your audience, and much more.

But, it isn’t enough for me to just convince you to implement quizzes in your marketing strategy, so I’m going to show you exactly how to create an effective quiz, how to distribute it, and how to follow it up with marketing automation.

At the end, we’ll cover several brands successfully using quizzes in their marketing strategy so you can walk away with a little more insight.

Part I: Creating Your Quiz

There’s more to a quiz than you might actually think. Did you know that six out of ten people only read a headline? That means we’re going to have to make a pretty good first impression, so let’s talk about the title first.

Title Selection & Quiz Types

The very first step to creating a quiz would be coming up with the title for it. Once you’ve got that down, you’re going to want to figure out what type of quiz you want to make.

Here are a few of the most common quiz titles;

  • The “Actually” Title: Believe it or not, adding the word “actually” can turn a simple question into a challenge. Compare “How much do you know about the Golden State Warriors” against “How much do you actually know about the Golden State Warriors” and you’ll see what we mean. No one likes to back down from a challenge, right?
  • “The Which (Blank) Are You?” Title: This one’s a classic. Due to our innate inquisitive nature, sometimes we just have to know which Marvel superhero we are before we die. It’s just one of those things we have to cross off our bucket list.
  • The “Celebrity Personality” Title: This is your typical personality quiz with the substitution of celebrities to give it that added pizazz. Because of the use of celebrities, they’re more likely to get someone’s attention sheerly through being starstruck.
which-wrestling-team-mate-are-you-quiz

Choosing The Quiz Type

The quiz titles above will give you a few ideas of quiz types, but here’s a few more to consider:

  • The Personality Quiz – We like to hear good things about ourselves, so because of the “self-serving bias,” personality quizzes work so well. This type of quiz categorizes people into personalities that compliment them based on their answers. If you’re a brand that focuses on product sales, you could use a personality quiz to place individuals into categories with personalized product recommendations based on the answers they gave.
  • The Knowledge Test: The knowledge test simply challenges anyone’s knowledge on a given subject. You could ask your audience how much they know about your brand, the products it offers, or any of today’s trending topics.

Crafting Quiz Questions

Now that you’ve got a general idea of what kind of quiz you want to create along with a title to go with it, it’s time to bring it to life by filling it up with questions!

Here are some things to keep in mind when formulating your questions:

  • Infuse Personality into Your Quiz: Breathe some life into your quiz by injecting your personality into it. Approach your audience as if you were talking to them in person. Make your audience feel comfortable so that they’ll be more likely to opt-in later.
  • Use Images for Your Questions: There’s nothing wrong with having text-only questions, but don’t be afraid to use images either. Using pictures keeps things interesting and relevant, it also makes your quiz feel more like a trivia game.
  • Keep It Short: People don’t have the longest attention spans, so keep things simple and sweet. Aim between 6 to 10 questions for your quiz, in general, this will only take your audience about two to three minutes to complete.

Designing A Lead Capture: Do’s and Don’t’s

After coming up with the questions for your quiz, it’s time to create a lead capture form. The purpose of lead capture is to gather contact information so that you can grow an email list.

You can then follow these leads up through marketing automation, which we’ll get into later. For now, here are some helpful do’s and don’t’s you should follow when creating your lead capture:

Do: Incentivize Your Lead Capture Form

Give your audience a reason to provide you with their contact information. Offer incentives like a free eBook or an entry to a free giveaway. Standard incentives include infrequent updates about your brand or a weekly newsletter. Find what works best to encourage your audience to join your mailing list.

Don’t: Ask For Information You Won’t Use

What’s the point in asking your audience for their phone number if you aren’t going to call them? Make sure you only ask for information that your brand will use; the most basic being a first and last name, and an email address.

Otherwise, you risk annoying your audience and having them bounce from your quiz.

Do: Be Honest About Your Marketing Strategy

It won’t always be clear to your audience that after you get their contact information, you’ll be contacting them. It’s a good rule of thumb to let your audience know that you’ll be getting in touch with them soon, so don’t be all hush-hush about your marketing strategy.

Be honest with your audience. Give them a quick heads up about what’s to come, like this:

Creating Shareable Results

Now onto the results! This is the moment your audience has been waiting for. You want to make sure your results are something they’re going to like and share with others, so creating share-worthy results will be your priority.

Here are a couple of pointers that will help you create results worth sharing:

  • Be Honest and Positive: Positive emotions are more likely to promote sharing, so create results that compliment your audience into sharing what they got. At the same time, be honest with your results. Don’t tell your audience that they’re something they aren’t.
  • Use Share-Worthy Images: Just like how we used images for your questions, we’re going to want to make sure we use images for your results. This time around, you want to use some pretty interesting pictures; ones that are worth sharing. This is what’s going to attract attention when people share their results on social media.
  • Create A Call-To-Action: Don’t let your interaction with the audience end at the results. Provide a call-to-action for your audience. It can be something as simple as a link to your website, or maybe even personalized links to product recommendations.
tony-ramos-wreslter-quiz-result

Part II: Distributing Your Quiz

Now it’s time to put your quiz through the ultimate test by promoting it on social media. Your major outlets for social networks would be Facebook and Twitter, but if you wanted to take it a bit further, you can also use paid advertising on Facebook to give your quiz that extra boost.

Share Your Quiz on Facebook and Twitter

When sharing your quiz on Facebook or Twitter, be sure you check off each of these to get the most out of promoting your quiz:

  • Be sure to use an attractive image to represent your quiz.
  • Make sure you have a captivating headline for your quiz.
  • Share both the image and the caption with a shortened link to track results.
red-lobster-quiz-facebook-ad

Don’t Be Afraid to Use Paid Advertising on Facebook

The process of promoting your quiz through Facebook via paid advertising can be a fairly lengthy operation, so to save you guys some time, we’ve truncated the whole process into a more time-friendly summary.

  • Selecting Your Target Audience: You have your choices of selecting a target audience by location, demographics, behaviors, and connections. You can even break these categories down even further. Let’s take location for example. We can narrow down the location to country, state/province, city, and zip code. Why would we want to do this? Maybe your brand wants to target an audience within its immediate vicinity. We don’t know. It’s up to you how you want to set the parameters for your target audience. So give it a try.
  • Creating A Custom Audience: Creating a custom audience consists of working with a list you’ve uploaded ahead of time. Facebook then generates an audience based on that list of previous customers you’ve already worked with.

Part III: Marketing Automation Follow-Ups

Here’s the fun part: following up on the leads you’ve collected. With the help of marketing automation, this may not take as much effort on your end as you might’ve thought.

We’re going to follow-up on your leads the very moment people opt-in, and in the course of two weeks, we’re going to show you how to nurture these leads until you can finally convert them into paying customers.

Here’s a four-step sequence that your marketing automation email follow-ups should live and die by:

Thank Your Audience for Taking Your Quiz First

Immediately after someone opts-in, send him or her an email that telling them “Thank you for taking our quiz!” This will remind your audience that they’ve opted-in, and it’ll also help assert your brand. It’ll give people a head’s up that you’ll be getting in touch with them soon.

Encourage Your Audience to Retake Your Quiz

After a couple of days, we’re going to pick up where your audience left off: their quiz results. Inform your audience about the other results they could have gotten. This may prompt your audience to retake your quiz, and maybe to even share their new results.

This is the perfect transition from your “thank you” email to sending out different content.

Build Trust with Case Studies or Testimonials

After a week, now would be a good time to build trust between you and your leads. Introduce testimonials or customer case studies to familiarize your audience with your brand and what other people think about it. This not only makes your brand look good, but it also lets your audience get more comfortable with who your brand is and what it stands for.

Convert Your Leads into Paying Customers

After two weeks, it’s time to convert those leads. Your audience should be familiar with your brand by now. Use incentives, like a webinar signup or coupons and discounts to encourage your leads to buy into your brand.

The rest is up to you and your expertise in converting leads into customers. These marketing automation follow-ups did most of the work for you, so it’s your turn to close the deal.

Part IV: Examples of Quiz-Use in Every Industry

It’s time to take a quick look at several examples of brands from different industries and how they implemented quizzes in their marketing strategy. Seeing these examples should give you a solid foundation when it comes to considering the use of quizzes in your own marketing strategy.

Retail: Z Gallerie

Z Gallerie is known for its commitment to providing furnishings, art, and accessories to both professional and amateur interior designers alike. They created the quiz “What is your Z Gallerie Style Personality?” to provide a personalized experience for every potential and current customer.

zgallerie-style-personality-quiz

Z Gallerie used a personality quiz as a way of bringing results that offered personalized product recommendations as a part of their marketing strategy. This method brought in a massive amount of leads per day which they followed-up with marketing automation.

It allowed Z Gallerie to continually recommend products tailored specifically to each person based on their individual quiz results. Now that’s online shopping done right.

Software: Cloud Sherpas

Cloud Sherpas specialized in cloud advisory and technology services for the world’s leading brands. (They’ve since been acquired by Accenture.)

Cloud Sherpas used their quiz to gauge each individual’s level of maturity, which helped determine the more qualified leads for their marketing strategy. They also promoted their blog on Facebook with the quiz attached.

cloud sherpa marketing quizzes example

Cloud Sherpas’ quiz brings in 3-4 qualified leads a day. Nothing like quality over quantity, am I right?

Marketing: The Foundation

The Foundation focuses on building businesses with entrepreneurs through the idea of building backward. It’s an incredibly interesting concept, and with it, they created the quiz “Do You Have An Entrepreneurial Mind?” based on an existing eBook they had which covered the basic types of business owners.

The Foundation used a quiz in its marketing strategy by pairing it with a Facebook ad campaign. This combination was able to cut their cost per lead from $6.00 to $3.80, and collected over 16,000 leads and millions in revenue. That’s quite the turnout if you ask us.

question-about-your-type-email

Nonprofit: Pin Cancer

Pin Cancer’s call-to-action is the rallying of the US wrestling community to fight against, you guessed it: cancer. Their noble efforts have prompted the aid of their quiz “Which USA World Team Member Are You?” as a means of driving social traffic and raising awareness on cancer.

On a site that normally sees 200 visits per day, Pin Cancer had the best day ever when their quiz went up, driving social traffic up to 6,000 in a single day and bringing in 3,800 new email subscribers. Talk about turning the tables on cancer!

Conclusion

Who knew implementing quizzes into your online marketing strategy could be so effective? We’ve just covered a lot of material, but hopefully, you got a lot out of it.

Just to recap, we went over the entire quiz creation process, so you should be familiar with how to create your own quiz by now. Distributing your quiz will really put it to the test, but as soon as you generate those leads, you know exactly how to nurture them until conversion.

Don’t let quizzes fly under your radar any longer; try using them in your marketing strategy to see just how far your brand can get.

Have you used quizzes in your marketing strategy? What were the results? 

The post How to Use Quizzes in Your Marketing Strategy appeared first on Neil Patel.

New comment by jstrasner in "Ask HN: Who is hiring? (November 2020)"

Specto | [https://jobs.specto.dev/](https://jobs.specto.dev/) | [email protected] | Europe, North/South America and matching timezones (remote) | Full-time | Android (Kotlin/Java/C++) | $120k-$180k | 0.15% – 0.35%

We’re building the next generation front-end app performance monitoring platform (APM) for the mobile era.

For the Android position we’re looking for engineers passionate about system internals and performance that have experience with performance profiling and optimization. We’re using mainly Kotlin with some shared C++.

We’re a team of ex. Facebook, Twitter/Crashlytics, Airbnb and Algolia engineers with extensive experience from mobile platforms to devops. We’re very well funded by a few infrastructure-focused investors.

We’re looking for remote engineers out of North/South America or Europe and other matching timezones.

The post New comment by jstrasner in "Ask HN: Who is hiring? (November 2020)" appeared first on ROI Credit Builders.

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