It’s the most wonderful time of the year – which means it’s time to send out holiday cards!

If you haven’t yet started to plan your holiday card, it’s not too late – and it’s an important touchpoint with your clients and prospects that you should absolutely incorporate into your marketing strategy.

I recommend sending out an e-card – it’s easier (as long as you have a targeted mailing list), cheaper and more direct especially with many people now working from home.

The most important part of this project is to make sure that you have the right people on your list.

I recommend making categories of people who should receive your holiday card – current clients, former clients, prospects, friends of the firm and alumni.

Once you have that list think about the card’s creative concept – do something unique and authentic to your organization.

I love the idea of getting your people involved – ask them to share their favorite holiday recipes and include them in a recipe book with the heading “eat drink and be merry.”

Another idea is to ask the kids of your employees to draw a picture of what the holidays mean to them.

You could also include photos of your employees’ holiday memories or their favorite holiday tradition.

Another way to stand out is to include photos from the past year of your people. I know this may be hard this year with the pandemic limiting activities but file this away for next year.

I love the idea of dressing up your employees’ pets in their holiday best and making that the theme of your card.

Making a donation to charity is also something you can make a focal point of your card. Clients want to see their law firms and other vendors doing good things for the world.

Whatever you do, try not to include generic holiday images such as a snowman, a snowflake or happy holidays in various languages where you have offices. That’s been overdone.

Your holiday card gives you an opportunity to remind your audience about what makes you unique. It’s an important strategic touchpoint in your marketing toolkit.

Don’t forget to post your holiday card on your social media channels as well. It’s another way to repurpose it and send a general holiday message to everyone who follows you on your social channels.

Tis the season and reach out to me if you need help with your holiday card this year!

Here’s a video with some more creative ideas for your corporate holiday card.

 

It’s important to remember that just because you created a useful article or blog post or are hosting a timely webinar, there is no guarantee that anyone will actually know about it.

The idea of “if you build it they will come” isn’t necessarily true when it comes to your marketing efforts. You need to promote them.

That’s why mail marketing should be at the top of your list when it comes to essential elements of your marketing strategy.

Many professional service organizations don’t realize the importance of creating an email marketing strategy.

Emails help to amplify other channels in your integrated marketing efforts, such as social media marketing, webinars/events and content marketing.

Emails are also among the most direct, low-cost and reliable ways of getting in touch with your clients and prospects because:

  • Email is personal
  • Email is purposeful
  • Email is targeted
  • Email increases leads
  • Email improves sales
  • Email generates traffic to your website
  • Email is cost effective
  • You own your email list
  • People check their email several times a day

Email marketing is easy, effective and inexpensive. Email marketing allows businesses to reach a large number of consumers at a rate of pennies per message. For small-business owners on a budget, this is ideal.

Email marketing helps you connect with leads, nurture them and convert them into clients/customers by being top-of-mind with them. It is crucial to supplement and promote your content marketing and event and webinar promotion strategy.

Email marketing is a strategic form of inbound marketing where you create content or social media tactics that spread brand awareness, so people learn about you, go to your website for information, show interest in your product or services, and potentially make a purchase.

One of the most important reasons you should use email marketing is because you have a direct channel to promote yourself and your services.

While social media should be part of your marketing strategy, there is no guarantee that your audience will actually see your social posts.

On the contrary, most people use their email daily, several times per day – so it’s a great way to reach your clients and prospects.

You can send emails about new products, features and benefits, or new content.

Since customers/clients or prospects opted-in to receive these communications, you can use email marketing to provide more resources to contacts who are interested in what you have to say.

That being said, your audience will take action on your emails only if they contain something that is helpful and interesting for them.

Three Things You Need to Build an Email List:

  1. A website or blog
  2. An email marketing service
  3. High-converting opt-in forms
  4. Helpful content
  5. Upcoming events and webinars

What to Include in Your Emails:

  • Value-added content
  • Share tips and tricks
  • How your product or services will solve their problems
  • Interactive formats and diversify with videos, infographics and images

Make sure that segmentation is part of your email strategy. This means personalizing content to your subscribers – it is not about blanketing them with emails that don’t pertain to them. That will only promote unsubscribes.

When it comes to email subject lines, make them concise and straightforward to increase open rates.

With email marketing campaigns, you’ll send traffic to your site and improve your SEO.

You can use emails to remind your audience of your brand and showcase your website content. Send summaries of your recent articles and blog posts where can click on the titles to read the rest of the content.

Remember to place clickable social media icons on your newsletter’s footer and embed your social media posts on your emails. That way, your customers/clients and others can follow your social media profiles.

I strongly recommend that you continuously build your email list as well as segment the list according to the parameters that make sense for your organization, clean up the undeliverable email addresses.

So, start that e-newsletter (with helpful, value-added content of course), if you haven’t already.

You can join my email list here.

Here’s a video with more on how to create an email marketing strategy. Follow me on YouTube.

 

In our busy lives, it’s easy to forget to take the time to be thankful for all that we have and all of those in our lives, and that is what the Thanksgiving holiday is all about, right?

I wanted to reflect on some of the things for which I am most grateful.

I encourage you to do the same – make a list of everything and everyone for which you are most thankful.

I am grateful and thankful for my family, friends and puppies(!), and every experience (bad and good) that has made me stronger, wiser and more resilient.

I’m thankful that I have a job and clients I love. After making a few career missteps, I am grateful to have found a way to be myself without being held back and to do things on my own terms.

I’m grateful to have a platform to help others on LinkedIn – whether it’s teaching them to be stronger social media marketers or how to write content that clients actually want to read.

I always say to build your brand long before you ever need it, and I hope you will really take that advice to heart. This is a major reason why I was able to start my own business in because I have been posting on LinkedIn for years.

I’m thankful to able to bring women together and discuss issues through Women Who Wow such as how to deal with mean girls at any age, picking yourself up after a setback and mental health struggles.

Grateful for these two

I’m thankful that so many of you have welcomed me with open arms here when I share challenges and struggles in addition to social media tips.

A managing partner of a former firm at which I worked messaged me and said “you post a lot of the things that we think but don’t say and raise important issues.”

That meant the world to me because many people read my posts but don’t necessarily like or comment on them.

It can be really inspiring to take a step back and realize all of the wonderful things you have in your life. Live in the now because you never know.

I’m thankful for all of you. Happy Thanksgiving!

Join me for a LinkedIn Profile Master Class on December 14 where I will take you through all of the elements of a successful LinkedIn profile and how to optimize your profile for personal branding and lead generation.

I’ll cover to how to create a strong LinkedIn headline, cover image and summary/about section as well as:

  • How to use the featured section for personal branding.
  • How to optimize your profile for SEO.
  • How to position your accomplishments without sounding overly boastful.
  • How to use skills and recommendations to your advantage.

So who am I and why am I talking about this topic?

I’m a 20+ year legal marketer who has worked at some of the most prestigious law firms in the country. Today I advise law firms and legal service providers on all aspects of marketing and business development, as well as provide LinkedIn coaching and training programs designed to help companies and business professionals build their brands and businesses. Link in with me!

Register for the program.

Many of us work in fields where our website content can be well, boring. Or maybe dry is a better way to put it.

But your content doesn’t necessarily have to put people to sleep no matter what it’s about.

Your clients and prospective clients have needs and they go to your website to find out more about whether you can meet those needs.

So, use your website as a way to engage them even if your subject matter is not the most exciting. Here are a few ideas on how to do that.

  • Understand your customers’ needs and ensure your web site addresses them at every point
  • Give real solutions through case studies
  • Regularly update content
  • Provide how-to guides
  • Offer infographics
  • Use video and podcasts to explain complicated concepts
  • Use illustrations and arresting imagery to draw visual interest
  • Create semi-gated explainer videos
  • Write everything with your client in mind and in their language
  • Be casual – no need for formalities anymore
  • Make sure your website can accommodate related stories, so those would appear on the page that the person is reading with other content that may be of interest to them.

Sign up for my email list for more content like this and access to my upcoming webinars.

 

The holidays can be the most wonderful time of year and also the hardest time of year for people like me who have lost a parent or loved one.

Grief is a long-winded process and it comes and goes. There are unfortunately no shortcuts to it.

After my mom’s death from cancer I went through what experts call the five stages of grief and bounced back and forth between them over again repeatedly (denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance).

One of the worst parts of losing someone you love is the harsh reality that you can’t just call them up to tell them something funny, to kvetch or when you need their advice.

Your life can change in an instant. Tragedies and illnesses happen.

Make sure to spend as much time as possible with and be good to the people you love.

I don’t think it ever gets easier to deal with the death of a loved one – especially around the holidays.

You never know what someone is dealing with so be kind to one another.

My mom gave this bracelet to me before her cancer came back with a vengeance, and it helps remind me that she’s always with me in some way.

Last year my awesome sister-in-law suggested that we open a bottle of champagne while my brother and I recounted a favorite memory of our mom and toast her instead of being sad.

I thought it was a great new tradition and one that I wanted to share with others who may also benefit from doing something like this.

While you eventually get used to not having your loved one around, because you simply have no other choice, you never get over the profound loss that they are just not there anymore.

Those of you who have experienced the death of someone close to you will understand what I mean by this.

So many successful people are trying to hold it together when inside they are struggling with loss and grief.

There are many others out there like me who feel the same profound loss – please know that you aren’t alone.

How do you cope with grief and honor a loved one who has passed away?

If you want people to share your content, you need to make it easy for them to do it.

This is one of the main reasons why I see low engagement on social media for certain companies.

Shares on social media can help get your content in front of new eyes, increase your brand’s credibility and even impact SEO.

However, your shares increase if you’re not making your content easy to share and ensuring that your content is valuable and relevant to your audience.

Here’s how you can encourage social sharing:

Create helpful, interesting content.

This should go without saying, but I still see companies and individuals post boring or self-promotional content. Good content is really the most important way to achieve social media success.

Add social sharing buttons to your content. Social sharing buttons should be on all of your web site and blog pages to encourage readers to easily share your content.

Include Click to Tweet links within the body of your content. This is a great way to make it easy for people to share snippets of your posts.

(Don’t just include buttons and links, however – prompt people to use this tool by leveraging the power of asking every now and then.)

Consider that people might prefer sharing with their own social scheduling tool and ensure your content is optimized accordingly.

How to increase social sharing

    Simple ways you can increase the social sharing of your posts

Include:

  • A catchy headline (it will likely be pulled in with the metadata for the preview link)
  • A well-written and well-optimized meta description
  • A compelling image (or set of images)

Finally, rely on your employees to help get the ball rolling with social shares.

Show your employees how easy it is to share with step-by-step instructions. (I find a quick Zoom training where we walk through the process together really helps).

Keep them in the loop by sending the content you’d like them to share in a daily email or via a group chat on Slack/Teams.

Include sample introductory text (there’s nothing worse than sharing a post without intro text) and hashtags to use. Encourage them to edit the text in their own voice.

How have you increased social shares?

Follow me on YouTube for more tips.

Here’s a video on how to increase your social shares.

 

I’m often asked how you can get a post to go viral on LinkedIn. It doesn’t happen often but it can. I recently got 1 million views and 12,000 likes on one post.

Here’s the thing, going viral on LinkedIn isn’t about trying to go viral.

In my experience the best way to go viral on LinkedIn is to be yourself, be helpful to others and be active on the platform. You also need to be available to answer all comments in the first few hours after you publish a post.

It’s about creating content that really resonates with your network.

It’s about listing at the right time of day.

It’s about authenticity and luck.

It’s about sharing your personal stories. Your challenges. Your background.

It’s about hooking in the reader in the critical first three lines of your post before it says “see more.”

It’s about using hashtags strategically.

It’s about being confident in your content.

It’s about using white space in posts and short paragraphs that make it easy to grab your reader’s attention when they’re scrolling.

It’s responding to all comments – especially within the critical first 30 to 60 minutes after posting.

It’s about not adding links in your post which hurts your ability to go viral because LinkedIn doesn’t want you to take people off its platform.

And most of all it’s about being human.

Getting Personal = Going Viral

Velocity + Engagement = Going Viral

 

Your content must be interesting and helpful but going viral really has to do with how fast and how much the people who do see your post engage with it via likes, comments, shares, etc.

I’m going to be offering a small LinkedIn group coaching course for the first time starting in January. If you are interested, message me!

Being an entrepreneur is the hardest thing I’ve ever done. I have to play the role of client service, trainer, counselor, assistant, creative strategist, finance, HR, marketing, IT and even therapist at times.

Today is Women’s Entrepreneurship Day and this is so important to me as a woman who has her own business, but also as a woman who supports other women through my Women Who Wow series.

I’ve featured more than 150 women in the series and have held nearly 20 webinars. The program has grown, and I’m so proud of it because I want to support and learn from other women.

I haven’t always had the best female bosses or colleagues but I have learned from those experiences and created Women Who Wow as a result (silver lining moment!).

So today I want to recognize some of the women who I greatly admire and from whom I learn. I also want to thank them for their counsel and advice. We are so much stronger when we are supporting each other.

Women Who Wow hosted a women’s entrepreneur panel with powerhouse group Deborah McMurray, Deborah Scaringi, Jennifer Klyse, Katie Lipp, Sherine Clarke, Olivia Vizachero, Laura Leopard and Shari Belitz a few months ago and you can watch it on my YouTube channel. Here is part 1 and here is part 2.

In addition to the women who participated in the roundtable I want to mention Paula Edgar, Elonide Semmes, Helen Burness, Eva Wisnik, Jennifer Gillman, Jeorjina Tegel, Deborah Brightman Farone, Karen Kahn and Melanie Lippman who inspire me every day.

Please tag a woman entrepreneur in the comments below. And don’t forget to support women-owned businesses!

I’m often asked what I use for a social media editorial calendar to manage my posts and my clients’ posts.

If you don’t yet have an editorial calendar to manage your posts, you should create one ASAP.

Without an organized system for planning, writing and scheduling content every week, you can find yourself with missed deadlines, unedited posts and chaos on your team.

An editorial calendar is a visual workflow that helps a team of content creators schedule their work on a daily, weekly or monthly basis.

Editorial calendars can help you track content types, holidays, images, hashtags, promotional channels, authors and most importantly, publish dates.

I use a template from Hubspot that you can also download for free (yay!). I like this one because you can color code posts (this helps with organization and repurposing your content) and in a monthly calendar format.

Here’s a link to the social media editorial calendar template I use.

Reach out to me if you want to talk about how to organize your editorial calendar.