Attract Customers by Using a Business Writing Service – Sample Post

Using a business content writing service makes it easy to give prospects useful information and demonstrate your expertise. That way you’re more likely to convert those prospects into customers. Here’s a sample blog for direct marketing, but the approach works for any industry.


Direct Mail Teasers That Grab Attention

When it comes to direct marketing, what you put on the outside of your envelopes is just as important as the content you put inside. Take a look at a few answers to commonly asked questions about teasers.

envelope for a business writing service

What are teasers? Teasers refer to the copy on the outside of the envelope. Their purpose is to get your recipient to open the envelope and read your letter. Treat teasers like a headline. Make people want to see the story without giving away all the details. State the problem and suggest the solution is inside.

Do all mailings need them? The short answer is no. Teasers are great for acquisitions where you’re reaching out to people who have had no previous contact with your company. On the other hand, a teaser on a B2B mailing could make a receptionist screen your piece out as unwanted advertising. Existing customers may not need teasers if you have a strong relationship with them.

What about content? Teasers should be brief and persuasive. Use buzzwords like “free” and create a sense of urgency. Appeal to your reader’s self-interest. Sadly, humor tends to backfire. There’s too much room for misunderstanding when you’re using very few words and talking with people you don’t know. Of course, teasers don’t have to be all text. Add compelling images.

As always, testing is the best way to know if teasers are right for your campaign. Test different wording and using no teasers at all. To make it even better, teasers are usually an inexpensive element to compare.

For the highest quality service for your printing and direct mail needs, contact us. We love to cut costs and add value for our clients.


Editor’s note: This is a solid post, and helps me to understand more about direct mail marketing, something I know very little about. If I was shopping for those services, I’d enjoy reading this and then after reading it, I’d be more inclined to do business with the company that published this. That’s the beauty of blogging. — Scott









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What We Can Learn About Blogging for Small Business from “The Following”

by Ruhi Jiwani

“The Following” is an intense TV show starring Kevin Bacon and James Purefoy on Fox that has been renewed for a third season because of the intense interest from fans.

In the show, Purefoy plays a serial killer obsessed with the work of Edgar Allen Poe. Not only does this show testify to the power of writing, since all of Purefoy’s killings are colored by Poe’s works, it also attests to the power of the internet since Purefoy develops a following while he’s in jail by going on the internet.

blogging for small businessJoe Carroll’s Growth in Prison

When the show begins, Purefoy’s character, Joe Carroll, is in prison.  He was put there by Kevin Bacon’s character, Ryan Hardy, many years ago.  Although Hardy’s life has been stagnating on the outside, Carroll’s life has been developing by leaps and bounds on the inside.  He has been talking to people with psychopathic tendencies—people who have already killed others or are on the verge of killing others.

Joe Carroll’s Use of the Internet to Develop a Following

While he’s still in prison, Carroll sets up a website to recruit followers and communicates with them via email.  Some of them even come to visit him in prison because they’ve started considering him in the light of a mentor.  Carroll encourages many of them to bond with him and fulfill their need to kill at the same time.  He teaches them that they are actually setting souls free by killing.  Eventually, with the help of his followers, Carroll escapes from prison and establishes a cult.

Using the Internet To Develop Your Following

If a serial killer can successfully develop his small business just by starting a website and emailing back and forth on the internet, imagine what the internet can do for your small business, which is actually a legitimate concern!  Setting up a website, a blog, and social media pages can really help to spread the word about your product or service.

Blogging for Small Business: Ideas

You may not think that you have a lot to blog about, but if you sit down to think about it, you’ll find that there are many things related to your product or service that will interest your customers.  Just as an example, here are a few things you can blog about if you manufacture and sell paper cups and plates:

  • There are a number of games kids can play with your products.  You can tell customers about these.
  • You can suggest different recipes for items that will be served on the plates you manufacture.
  • If there are holidays coming up when people will be able to use your products, such as Halloween or Thanksgiving, you can give them a little history about these holidays and suggest different ways of saving time by using your product.
  • If you’re introducing a new line of plates and cups, you can blog about this.
  • If you’ve had someone new join your company, you can introduce them on your blog.

And if you just can’t think of anything to blog about, you can always hire a blog-writing service with a number of talented writers, each of whom has several interesting and creative ideas.

Expanding Your Demographic

Think back to Joe Carroll.  He managed to recruit a young woman who killed her mother (Emma Hill), a child murderer whose first kill was at 12 (Paul Torres), the Sheriff of a town who is also his chief administrator (Roderick) and a young man who has had murderous thoughts but has never actually killed anyone (Jacob Wells).  If a serial killer can attract this kind of following by tailoring his website to a number of different demographics, imagine what you can do with yours!

Editor’s note: This is an example post from a writer who loves to find the (admittedly sometimes absurd) connection between celebrities and blogging for small business. Her last was about Taylor Swift. It’s a little wacky to connect the two, but somehow she does it from her home office in New Jersey. (Maybe it’s because she lives closer to real celebrities than I do in Colorado.) Anyway, while it’s wacky, it shows how fun a business blog can be. There’s no need that every post be super educational, and it still has the right keywords in the right spots, so it still helps with SEO, etc. And real people love this kind of stuff. I’ve never seen the show, but I still love this post. — Scott









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Third Birthday for BlogMutt

Typically, the BlogMutt writers craft blog posts for this blog. Today, I’m actually writing it myself because it’s a big day here at BlogMutt. On this day three years ago we sent our first posts to paying customers.

We understand small businesses intimately for two reasons:

  1. We serve small businesses and the agencies that work for small business.
  2. We are a small business.

The stats are pretty clear that something like 40 percent of small businesses don’t live to see their third birthday.

We’ve seen up close that with a portion of our clients who’ve stopped using BlogMutt because they simply go out of business. (Luckily, it’s not the main reason customers stop using BlogMutt. The main reason they stop is that BlogMutt worked and they grew so much that they were able to hire a full-time marketer who can write the posts. It’s bittersweet when they “graduate” from BlogMutt, but we’re happy to see them grow!)

We here at BlogMutt are surviving, and more than that, we are thriving! We recently added another full-time staffer, Patrick. (He’s the one with the George Clooney vibe.) Courtney and Liz continue to do stellar work, and Wade and I continue to enjoy this thing that we created above a bar way back in the early part of the decade before anyone had heard of twerking. Miss those days.

BlogMutt staff on third anniversary

Scott, Patrick, Courtney, Liz and Wade in front of our Boulder office. (Photo by Mariano Oreamuno.)

Anyway, we will be hiring at least two more people in the coming couple of months, and our group of writers continues to grow. I’m convinced we have the greatest group of writers anywhere on the ‘net.

Interestingly, three years ago today, we sent posts to two customers. Those two customers remain with us to this day. Now we sell thousands of blog posts every month, but each one is as special as those first two blog posts.

We have customers all over the world, yet each and every post that we send out is crafted by a US writer, to be just right for the blog of each individual customer. Doing that at scale is something Wade and I dreamed about three years ago, and now it’s really happening.

The landscape of tools that businesses can use to market themselves grows daily, but there’s one thing that software just can’t do, and that’s write a blog post.

We’ve had a great time writing thousands of blog posts — one at a time — for three years now, and we look forward doing more of that for many years to come.

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Four Stellar Reasons To Work From Home With BlogMutt

work from home opportunityAre you looking for ways to make extra money online?  Maybe you have a nine-to-five day job, but you still can’t seem to make ends meet. You need extra income.

Or maybe you’re secure, but you want to transition from full-time at the office to part-time, so you can spend more time with your kids as they grow up.  You might even be a stay-at-home mom looking to help out on family bills with some extra cash.

Whatever the reason, congratulations on finding BlogMutt!  We offer you the ability to work from home by writing articles.  Our clients have blogs, and you write articles for the blogs you choose.  You get paid when one of your articles is purchased by the customer.

Sound good? Here’s why it’s even better:

1.  BlogMutt Is A Legitimate Work-From-Home Opportunity

In your search for work-at-home jobs, you’ve probably discovered how many online scams there are out there.  It’s easy to get discouraged and mistakenly think that there are no online jobs that actually pay.  But BlogMutt is a legitimate work-at-home opportunity, so you don’t need to worry about falling for an online scam.

2.  BlogMutt Fits Into Your Lifestyle

You can work whenever you want and at your own pace.  Do as few or as many articles as you like—it’s all up to you.  That being said, working for BlogMutt will integrate perfectly into any lifestyle.  You can work when the kids are at school or in the middle of the night if that’s what suits you.

3.  No Credentials Are Required

We don’t require any special credentials or degrees of our workers.  All you have to do is fill out our application and make sure that we can verify that you’re a real person. Once we have accepted you, feel free to begin working immediately!

4.  Invoice Whenever You Like

Something else our writers love is getting to invoice us whenever they desire.  After you invoice, you can expect payment every Monday—it’s as simple as that!

We hope you’ll consider writing for us. Check out the application if this sounds appealing to you.  We look forward to working with you!

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WOOF Round-Up: Cosmetics In The Ancient World

Welcome to your weekly WOOF round-up, wherein we compile all of our words from the day, from the dictionaries of the day, into one handy compendium for your edification and pleasure.

nefertiti

Nefertiti rocked the black eye paint in ca. 1370 BCE Egypt.

We learned a little bit about eye makeup in the Old Testament, and that it wasn’t looked upon favorably. In fact, we still use the term Jezebel, who is mentioned as having painted her face, as both a contemptuous appellation for a woman who is immoral, and as a friendly, jocular nickname for a woman who is not immoral, but who is pleasingly outrageous, only considered immoral by outdated standards.

Today, a person who would like to paint her eyes and brows can buy her cosmetics from Sephora. But where did ancient makeup come from?

Both ancient Egyptian men and women used kohl, a black compound made from a combination of materials, including lead, which was applied to the eyes with a stick (should I be looking forward to Sephora’s “Stick Application” line next season?).  Both ancient Greek men and women used olive oil on their skin, and women mixed charcoal with olive oil for their eye makeup. They also used rouge and foundation.

But it wasn’t just the Old Testament writers who took umbrage with women in makeup. Xenophon’s Socrates, in the “Oeconomicus” (on household economics), argues against a wife who:

“…covered her face with white lead, so that she would seem to have a paler complexion than she really had, and put on thick rouge, so that her cheeks would seem redder than in reality, and high boots, so that she would seem taller than she naturally was.” 

Meretricious Jezebel!

The woman’s husband has a chat with her, and in the end, Socrates, the husband, and the wife all agree that it’s deceitful for the woman to wear makeup (gee, another charge of deceit against a woman in the ancient world. Thanks, Eve!):

You might successfully fool someone outside the household by this kind of deception, but insiders always get caught when they try to deceive one another. For they can be found out when they get up in the morning before they have time to prepare or they are caught out by sweat or put to the test by tears and exposed completely by washing.”

To sum up everything, Socrates concludes, “Women who sit around pretentiously ask to be categorized with the women who use make-up and deceit.”

While we have different standards for what is considered deceit in the modern world, are there any conventions you can think of that are similar today? Perhaps some criticize people who opt to have plastic surgery because it’s unnatural, in the same way that Socrates and the Old Testament brethren stodgily censured cosmetic makeup in the ancient world.

Monday: Überbrettl — Cabaret, floor show, night club (German). (1950 Dictionary Of Foreign Words And Phrases)

Tuesday: Lobster Trick — In journalism, skeleton staff which works the shift taking in late night and early morning hours, after the last edition has gone out. Also called “dog watch,” “graveyard shift,” and “night side. (1982 Longman Dictionary Of Mass Media & Communications)

Wednesday: Laura — The name for a monastery where the monks live in separate hermitages around the church. From the Greek Λαύρα, meaning  “passageway.” (1965 Maryknoll Catholic Dictionary)

Thursday: Eye paint — Black eye makeup which was applied to the lashes and brows to make the eye more pronounced and protect against the glare of the sun. In each of the Old Testament passages where it occurs, the person using it is to be censured (e.g., Judah, personified as a harlot, was seen wishing to appear beautiful to her lovers, and “enlarge” the “eyes with paint.”) (1987 Eerdmans Bible Dictionary)

Friday: Cicerone — A guide who explains the antiquities and chief features of a place. From the Latin orator, Cicero, whose eloquence the guides were thought to have had. (1935 Webster’s Daily Use Dictionary)

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Hot Marketing Tips For Small Businesses

Marketing is an essential part of any business plan or strategy.  Without a marketing plan in place, how will people know about your business? Let’s look at some tips to help you improve your small business marketing skills.

marketing tips for small businesses1.  Do Freebies.

Generally, disposable income is limited and potential customers are more likely to hold onto it if they aren’t familiar with your brand and services.  No one likes to spend money to try something new and have it disappoint them.  Take away that anxiety and let people have free samples or trials of your products.  This is a great way to get people through the door so that they can get a sense of what your business offers.  And if they really like your services, they will probably keep coming back as a loyal customer.

2.  Ask For Referrals. 

Your current customers can be a great help to you.  Ask them to refer you to friends, family, and other people they know.  If you’ve pleased your customers with great service, they’ll be more than happy to recommend you.  Don’t worry about it being awkward or pushy to ask. Most people actually enjoy helping you since you provided them with a great product or service.

3.  Get Your Networking On.

Businesses need to network to gain long-term success.  Many business owners have a misunderstanding about networking.  They expect immediate gains and when that doesn’t happen, they stop networking and say it doesn’t work.  But you have to be patient.  Networking isn’t a quick fix. It’s a strategy that works in the long run and will keep you afloat in the future with a steady stream of customers.  The key to networking is to get involved in your community and area.  Don’t focus on making sales while you network, just relax and enjoy the company of others.  Get to know people, ask questions, and help with community functions.  This will give you a solid reputation and build a brand of trust for your business.

4.  Maintain A Blog.

Try your hand at blogging—it’s very much like online networking.  Blogging can help customers learn more about your brand and stay up to date on your products and services.  Often, people will go online first when they hear about a new business that interests them.  If you have a blog, those customers will have a chance to hear directly about your products and will most likely want to try your services once they get more information.  Blogging is also an excellent way to establish your brand as a leader and authority in your field, as it showcases your expertise and provides customers with value.

Don’t neglect your small business marketing plan.  Getting the word out about your services will connect you to people who need and enjoy your business—people who are more than happy to support you.  Contact us if you have any questions and let us know if you need help with your blog.  We’d be happy to help you get started!










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Small Business Blogging Tips To Keep Readers Coming Back For More

small business tipsYou’ve heard about ways to market, post, and generate good content to attract readers, but when it comes to keeping readers, you can always learn something new.  Here are some small business tips to keep readers coming back to your blog and your site, again and again.

1. Enable Comments.

  • Show appreciation for the interaction of those commenting by responding.  Readers feel appreciated if you respond to their insights, and it’s a great way to have a personal connection with your readers.  It’s amazing how many blogs have comments with no feedback from the blogger or postmaster.
  • Make sure the comment section provides an easy way to post.  Your choice is between a free comment section and a membership.  Free comment sections have a user name, email address, optional web address, and space to comment.  Some offer CAPACHAs.  If you choose to require a sign-in membership, make the process simple.  Lengthy information turns off readers.
  • Comment on other blogs.  Comment on blogs that you read.  It shows that you are interested and active, and might even encourage other bloggers — and their followers – to visit your site.

2. Remind Readers About Your Site.

  • Write a newsletter.  Newsletters send your blog to your readers’ inboxes, with links that lead straight to targeted areas on your site.
  • An alternative to newsletters is an RSS feed.  RSS feeds are located on feed websites, custom home pages, or in browser feeds, where readers can peruse at their leisure.

3. Connect The Dots.

  • A series focuses on one topic stretched into several parts.  Let readers know when the next in a series is coming, and link the previous parts in the newest post.  If anyone misses a part in the series, she can click on the link to catch up.
  • Wrap-ups remind the viewer of what happened this week, the past two weeks, or the past month.  Incorporate the best blogs into the post and provide links to them.
  • Designate one day of the week to be a special day.  Post an infographic, photos, comics, podcasts, fun quotes, or answer reader questions.  Readers will look forward to that day for the latest content.
  • Similar articles are ones that relate to the ones you’re reading.  Inform the reader of other articles that are worth viewing at the bottom of every article.  Label it as “you may also like,” or something similar.

If you haven’t thought about these strategies, incorporate them into your blog now.  For more information on blogs, contact us.










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Blogging For Tax Services

By Curt Smothers

Blogging for tax services requires somewhat of a scaremongering mindset. When it comes to paying our taxes, most of us do so more out of fear of the IRS than patriotism. Coupled with the scaremongering is the absolute need to spy on the enemy’s playbook, which is the over 10,000 pages of the tax code from Hell.

The IRS, who wrote the code to begin with, administers, adjudicates and has powers of enforcement, which makes it a collection agency on steroids. What can they do to you if you don’t pay up? Everything. They can take your money and your property, and what they can’t confiscate outright, they can lean on with a lien.

blogging for tax servicesA lien is a big brown smudge on the title to your home or other real property. Try to dispose of the property or get a loan or more credit, and the lien is the equivalent of an IRS auditor yelling, “Not so fast!”

Then there’s the other L-word, which is the levy. That’s where the IRS can confiscate your bank accounts, garnish your wages, divert your accounts receivable if you own a business and even go after the cash value of your life insurance policy for the money you owe in back taxes. Those back taxes also grow in size because of interest and penalties.

See what I mean about scaremongering? In the previous explanation about liens and levies, I barely scratched the surface of what powers the IRS has to collect taxes for the voracious beast the federal government has become.

So the key to blogging successfully for tax services is taking the dry, structured language of the IRS procedures manual and writing about it in a way to get the attention of tax procrastinators. It is totally reality based, because when you owe the IRS, you can hide, but you can’t run forever.

The tax service is in business to help people get their lives back in order and settling up with the IRS. Contrary to popular opinion, the people at the IRS are approachable and are willing to compromise and work out a time payment or even partial forgiveness of the debt. They realize – and the tax code is written accordingly – that crippling a tax payer financially doesn’t get money flowing in.

On the other hand, if there’s fraud involved, the IRS doesn’t hesitate to call in the heavy hitters of their Criminal Investigation Division. It’s like that old Far Side cartoon, where the shark says to the castaway floating on a raft: “Look, why don’t you just give up and let us eat you. Otherwise, there could be a feeding frenzy, and no one wants that.”

If you’re looking for bloggers who know about tax problems, solutions, and options, contact us. We know of one or two who used to work for the IRS. We don’t know if they are reporting their BlogMutt earnings as income, but this writing service operates on the honor system, just like the IRS – except they have auditors.

Editor’s Note: This blog is an example of the kind of writing you can get for your blog. The only thing that’s different is that it has the name of the writer. For your blog, you can say you wrote it. That’s fine with us. We’re happy mutts. Click here for more explanation of this series of posts.









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Blogging For Ecommerce Will Help You Sleep Better

It’s late at night and you’re wide awake, thinking about the performance of your online business. You’ve researched the market, your pricing is competitive, and you sell high-quality products.

You take payments through all of the top payment-processing companies. You may even have a great website. You probably even spent money for the best design and SEO. But the fact remains that orders just aren’t showing up in your inbox, and you can’t figure out why.

Is this a familiar scenario? What else can you do to drive sales through your site?

It’s Time To Write

Believe it or not, blogging for ecommerce is a way to drive repeated sales to your online store. No, this doesn’t mean you need to monetize your blog, or charge a fee to read it. You have to use writing as a form of marketing.

Think of your ecommerce blog as an opportunity to present your company to the world. If you could have five minutes to tell your potential customers anything (besides “Click here to buy!”) what would you say?

You might say, “This is why you should buy from me!”

Guess what? Customers want to know that answer and they will come to your page to find it.

Using Blog Content To Drive Traffic

blogging for ecommerceA blog on your ecommerce site doesn’t just help customers find the pre-sales answers they are looking for. It also helps your site reach the customers who are searching for you.

By using keywords in your blog, you will help those people find you easier when they search online. Do you sell polka dot socks? Using the keyword polka dot socks in a blog about the latest sock fashion trends will help the entire polka-dot-loving, sock-wearing community locate you. This is pretty useful if your website title and business name has nothing to do with polka dot socks.

But I Sell, I Don’t Have Time To Write!

This is the case for many small businesses. Lucky for you, there are blog writing services, like BlogMutt, that employ bloggers who have knowledge on a variety of topics. These writers create blog posts specifically for you.

You simply provide BlogMutt with the topics you’d like your blogs to be about, and a little bit about what you want your customers to know. Then, our writers will write content for you.

When you’re ready to stop losing sleep, contact us and let us fill up your blog. We will make sure you have something great to say, even if it is about polka-dot socks.










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Un-Retire Yourself With Work-At-Home Freelance Jobs For Retirees

By Carol Rucker

freelance jobs for retireesIf you are senior enough to be a retiree, you probably already know that the “new” concept of working at home is actually an old corporate tradition. But you might be surprised to discover that the new tradition of online work-at-home freelance jobs for retirees could be the perfect way to earn extra cash and maybe even un-retire yourself.

Decades back, very few steady careers offered a work-at-home option. Unless you were an insurance investigator, a salesman, a writer–oh, and unless you were a man–you probably nine-to-fived your way to retirement just like everyone else.

You might still harbor vague jealousies of phantom co-workers. Those were the employees you rarely saw because they were either on-the-road or working at home. They occasionally slipped in and out the office, but only for mail pickups, staff meetings, and company car safety checks. Admit it. You always wished you could have the same work freedom they did. Freelancing can give it to you.

Technology has expanded the work at home experience

If you were lucky enough to be one of those old school corporate home workers, you may have dialed up clients on a rotary phone, sorted piles of papers at your kitchen table, and used a Daytimer to track your life.

Only writers (and women) did their own typing back then. Home workers dictated reports and correspondence on a recorder or a phone dictation system. Office transcribers typed them into finished documents.

As a retiree, you’ve witnessed the forward leap through technology that helped make working from home a universal trend. With computers, tablets, smartphones, and wireless internet access, employees and freelancers can work anywhere in the world. Cloud computing eases work submission, collaboration and feedback. It lets skittish managers monitor work product in real time.

Everyone works on a keyboard, so you have to do your own typing. But that small concession can open up a new world of freelance opportunities. And if you really want to dictate your work instead of hunting and pecking on a keyboard, transcription programs can turn your spoken words into documents. It can be like having your own office support staff.

Benefits for workers

When corporations embrace the idea of letting freelancers do the job on their own terms, workers become more productive. When you work at home, you have choices.

  • You decide what work you do.
  • You decide how much and how often you work.
  • You can schedule work around personal activities and commitments.
  • You can avoid the expense and wasted hours of endless commuting.

Employers benefit as well

The study “Does Working From Home Work?” by Stanford Professor Nicholas Bloom, discusses the benefits to open minded businesses that choose to hire home workers.

  • Productivity increases due to the elimination of workplace distractions.
  • Workers are happier and less likely to quit.
  • Attrition rates decrease.
  • Businesses save the cost of office space and furniture.
  • When freelancers do the work, businesses also save on salaries and benefits.

It’s not for everyone

Working at home doesn’t work for everyone. But if you’re a retiree with a lifetime of getting the job done, it could be for you. As with any new set of skills, there’s a learning curve. But you can usually earn while you learn. To thrive as a stay-at-home worker, you need only call on your history of professionalism, motivation, and self-discipline.

Read the information here if you’d like to know more about work-at-home freelance jobs for retirees.

Editor’s Note: This blog is an example of the kind of writing you can get for your blog. The only thing that’s different is that it has the name of the writer. For your blog, you can say you wrote it. That’s fine with us. We’re happy mutts. Click here for more explanation of this series of posts.

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