Last night Amy Africa joined #blogchat to help us understand how we can generate more sales and leads from our business blogs. I wanted Amy to sit in on a blogchat because she's SERIOUSLY helped me with my efforts to generate leads and business from my consulting site, MackCollier.com, and I knew she would really help #blogchat participants. Quite frankly, so many of us in the social media space SUCK at self-promotion and 'asking for the order'. So I knew this was an area where Amy could help so many of us.
And when the smoke cleared, last night's #blogchat had amassed a staggering 1,300+ tweets in a little over 2 hours. For reference, the most active #blogchat we had before last night got 820 tweets. Here is a direct link to the #blogchat transcript and make SURE you save this.
Here are 10 key takeaways for me from last night's #blogchat:
1 - Ask for the order. This is second-nature to most people outside the 'social media fishbowl', but many of us that are active in this space have a tough time asking for the order. I've learned from experience that the more you promote yourself, the better you get at it. So get started!
2 - Figure out what action you want visitors to take. Do you want them to email you? Place an order? I think a BIG problem many of us have with our blogs is we focus on getting more interaction, but we do a poor job of leveraging those interactions toward the action we want our visitors to take.
3- Sites/blogs have 4 'quads' and your 'call-to-action' needs to be in at least 3 of those quads, all four is better.
4 - Put your 'call to action' in different forms because different users respond in different ways. For example, if the action you want your visitors to take is to give you their email address so you can contact them, you need to ask for their email in different ways. Such as via leaving a comment, signing up for a free email newsletter, completing a poll/survey. And these different forms also need to be in different quads, as mentioned in #3.
5 - Use visuals centered around your 'call to action'. Want visitors to sign up for your free newsletter? Then add a nice visual to the signup (Check out how Amy does this on her site, check the right sidebar). We think visually, and pretty pictures matter.
6 - Visitors to your blog/site look to the left for help, the right when they want to leave. Consider this when you organize your site, give them a reason to stay and putting 'click here NOW' or such on the right. Also, 'Click here NOW' is far more effective than 'Click here'. And the righthand column is a great place to put your Twitter feed.
7 - If you want visitors to spend more time on your site, improve your site's navigation.
8 - Every blog should have a CLEAR way for visitors to email you. If the only option is a form you will lose 1/4th of the responses.
9 - When you want visitors to take an action on your blog, use Buttons, not links.
10 - The average visitors makes all their decisions on your blog based on the FIRST screen they see. Consider this when you decide what action you want them to take, and place your calls to action accordingly.
And trust me, that's only a fraction of the smartitude covered last night. Make SURE you get the transcript from last night's #blogchat, follow Amy on Twitter, and subscribe to her QLOG.
What was YOUR key takeaway from last night's #blogchat?