Category : Getting Started Online

101 Getting Started Online Instagram online marketing Small Business social media

Get started with Instagram for business

This Instagram for business guide is perfect for beginners, people just dabbling and those who have never used Instagram before!

Instagram has grown into one of the worlds largest social media networks, it,s a place where you can discover and post visually pleasing content. Often Instagram has been associated with the ‘cool kids’ fashionistas, music types and artists. But in fact Instagram is mainstream now and can work just as well for businesses that aren’t so creative! You just have to think about new ways to use the platform and decide how the network could work for you in terms of either building your brand personally or as a business to drive sales to products or services.

You may have noticed that Instagram has changed its look from the quirky vintage insta camera to a more modern and colourful flat icon. This change seems to reflect the changes that Instagram is going through in terms of being a platform for businesses to use as well as personal users. If you can get your marketing technique and content right on this platform, you’ll be open to huge new audiences ready to interact with you and your brand. Not only has Instagram changed in design but they have added a few new features! Stories is one most notable. With stories (it’s a bit like snapchat stories) you are able to take snaps and videos throughout the day and them to a story not appearing on your public profile, messing up the look and branding of your image grid. (you can also read about what Instagram stories are and how to use Instagram stories for business here)

In this quick start guide I’ll give you the basics on how to use Instagram and the the tools you can use to make your feed / grid stand out as well as strategies to use to start gaining followers and getting more engagement.

Getting set up

Instagram is an app, available on both iPhone and android. If you haven’t got it yet, simply download the app and follow the instructions in filling out your profile. You can either use your Facebook settings or create from scratch, if you are setting up as a business you should do this from scratch, if it’s for personal branding reasons you may as well use Facebook settings as to keep your brand succinct across your social networks.

You’ll get the opportunity to upload a photo, again this can be imported from Facebook or you can take a selfie or choose from your camera roll.

Your profile

When optimising your profile text, try to tell a story, this is the one place you are able to have about you content. It’s also worth noting that your profile is the only place you’ll get a clickable link, so make it stand out.

Using emojis is a great way to tell a story on your Instagram profile. Here’s a great example by my friend Katya (@Livestreamkatya)

Instagram for business


Next you’ll want to start posting. If you are just starting out on Instagram, you have a golden opportunity to make your feed or grid look beautiful and branded. So it’s essentially you or when people see your content or profile they’ll see uniformity.

You can use a mixture of images and then text, quotes and offers created from apps. – my preference for image creation apps are typorama and wordswag. Here are some examples of how you can brand your Instagram page notice the importance of colour. When someone lands on your profile you want them to go ‘oh yeah obviously thats that brand’. Check out Katya again notice the blue and the quotes and then check out social day with the pink!

Instagram for business

Instagram for business

As you can see, you can use a created image and then a photo on alternate postings, this makes it pop! Video is also prevalent on Instagram now and new features are being added regularly, in fact videos now have an added minute extension. Video can be a quick hi to your followers, a product demo or some valuable educational tips. These should be short and snappy (although lots more fun using stories features)

Once you’ve added your image or video to Instagram, you’ll get the option to add a filter. Do this for images you have taken and perhaps think about using the same filter throughout for uniformity across your Instagram feed content. Before you post you have the opportunity to add some text, although Instagram is visual this area is very important, you can use it to post long form I.e: you could write a story or blog post here. Generally anything non Salesy and value adding works best.

A great way to use this area would be to create an image title in one of the apps discussed from a blog post you’ve created and in the text area post some of the blog and explain what people will learn and ask them to go to your website and read more. My preferred method is not to take people away from the platform they are on but to simply post the whole blog natively into Instagram. You must remember there is no link in Instagram posts but only your profile, sending them back there is a big effort and you don’t want to leave people feeling like all your trying to do is get a click. This may sound daft as you’ve always been told to send people through to your site for that extra traffic, but in fact adding an email or number at the end of the Instagram post is just as effective as actually sending people away to do the same thing! As long as the content you share is valuable, interesting or pleasing in some way to your target audience you’ll never have to worry about those clicks, people will be intrigued and seek you out anyway.


But how do you get new people to discover your content on Instagram? The answer is the hashtag! Hashtags are an Instagram staple and it’s worth working out what the most popular hashtags are for your industry. Don’t worry! You won’t have to spend hours researching this, I’ve found a nifty little app which is free called tagomatic. You’ll simply add in the text box a hashtag you know to be popular and relevant to your post and hit search. The app will give you 30 relevant hashtags. Most will be perfect some won’t be quite right, you’ll simply highlight the ones you want and copy to Instagram, this opens the app and the post you’ve been working on automatically so all you need to do is post your chosen hashtags. When it comes to hashtags it’s not about spamming them all with irrelevancy to get more likes and views. It’s about finding the correct tags that ensure the right people will find your content. You may include up to 30 hashtags and in my experience 11+ get the best results. In the tagomatic app you are able to save your hashtag sets for easy copying and pasting later.

Remember (again) when you post there is no clickable link so try to think of a smart way to add a call to action. Perhaps you could say something as simple as check out my blog or profile for more great tips or products. You can also share your Instagram posts to Twitter and Facebook, this can happen automatically or you can just tick the network you’d like to share with and this option is shown when you post.

Relationship building

It’s very important that your strategy is consistent, so post regularly, once a day, twice a day, this is how you get results. Remember to also go through and follow influencers and peers that are relevant to your industry and reach out to them by liking and commenting on their content also. This is how you build relationships with people. It’s social media so be social take a little time each day to talk to people. You can discover people both through searching hashtags and via your suggested contacts on your phone and with Facebook (basically Facebook will tell you which of your friends are also on Instagram for easy discovery).

Instagram for business: What’s next?

There are a heaps of apps and new features being released all the time for Instagram. Get the basics down and then you’ll be able to explore them all in time. Instagram is owned by Facebook so you can be sure it’s not going anywhere and that they are constantly innovating. Instagram recently rolled out business profiles in the UK which came with a new set of features meaning people will are able call you straight from the app plus great analytics and insights. To convert to the business profile, simply hit the settings cog and hot switch to business page.
You can also use engagement you receive as a way of measuring success and if web hits are important to you, ensure you check your website analytics regularly to see If Instagram send any users through to your website. The other useful feature of Instagram business is be the ability to advertise or boost posts just like on Facebook that are doing well. This is all great but what it means is Instagram is now monetising more, so be aware if you are an existing user that there is an updated algorithm, meaning your post may be seen a lot less. Having said that if you are a business these new profiles and tools will become necessary and really powerful in helping you to connect with new audiences and analyse your results. Note that: Advertising on Instagram is also currently done through the Facebook ads platform and you can connect your facebook business page to your Instagram business page.

– A version of this post appeared in KWIB Magazine.

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101 Getting Started Online Snapchat social media

Snapchat 101 – How to use Snapchat (easy get started guide)

Here’s your quickfire guide on how to get and use Snapchat..No frills I am afraid, just this is how you do it! – Perfect for those of you just jumping on the wagon!

Snapchat is so simple to use, literally anyone can get the app and get going. You need no tech know how just a phone and space for the app!

Let’s get going, as you are here I feel like you’ve not got or used snapchat

Get the app

This bit is very easy.. go to the app store or android store and get the Snapchat app (it’s free)

Sign up

When you use the Snapchat app for the first time you’ll need to sign up – which is the norm with social media and many apps. Follow the instructions and move on.

Basic bootcamp

Straight in, you’ll get a photo of your own face, take a selfie! Tap the button and take a photo. You are also able to (Instead) make a short video of about 10 seconds or upload and image or video you prepared earlier. This part is pretty fun, your pic will end up inside a little ghost shaped box with some dots around it, it’s called a snapcode, this is like your snapchat calling card or actually it’s a bit like a QR code (remember those!?) You can also use the front camera if you wish and in that case you may want someone else to take the photo.
You can download your snapcode and send to your friends or business contacts.

Making connections

You are able to access your contacts from your phone to see who is currently on Snapchat and connect with them (it always seems a little lonely when you first join a new social network)

Lenses & Filters

Okay, you’ve probably seen people sharing their snap stories and photos with funny filters and lenses around social media? These make your snaps more entertaining, exciting, funny and interesting and there are new ones added regularly. To turn yourself into a snapchat creature or make yourself look beautiful simply press and hold your face, you’ll see a mesh and you’ll be able to scroll along the lenses at the bottom of the page and with press once to take a photo or hold down to make a video.

For filters, simply slide your screen to the right with your finger and you’ll see a number of filters such as the time, speed or sometimes there are custome geo-filters that people have created such as for towns, events or parties that you can also use.

Story and chat

You can then add your snaps and images from the day to your story, once you’ve made your snap you’ll see a blue arrow in the bottom right corner.. press it and you’ll have the option to add to your story (your story is public for everyone to see) or you can send your snap privately to your connections. There are some great options in chat, such as live video streaming, adding images, calling privately and so on! The key is to just get on and try it.

For business: Geo-filters are also a good way to promote your own events and services….

Add me and send me your snaps I am Lucycshall on Snapchat.

Giving it a go won’t hurt and once you’e done the basics there is a chance you’ll get hooked! You’ll learn as you go from here but for more tips and tools keep an eye on this blog plus and whereby they’ll be new guides, videos and training content added regularly!

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Getting Started With Facebook Ads

In this post I will give you an overview of Facebook Ads, how they work and a quick guide to get you started.

Facebook is HUGE! It’s the largest social media site on the planet with over 1.3 billion users. A large proportion (64%) of those users login every single day. So how can you take a advantage of these numbers to gain more exposure for your own business?

Using Facebook Ads is a great place to start!

One of the best reasons to use Facebook Ads is that they are so accessible, they are easy to create and there is so much information out there to help you get it just right. When creating a Facebook Ad you can create specific target audiences by filtering by demographics, interests and geographical location.

Facebook ads types screen grab
Facebook Ads create the perfect opportunity for start ups and small businesses to get access to exact audiences very quickly and for very little money.

Here are some tips to help you get started:

Types of Facebook Ads:

To start you must have a Facebook business page (this is free to set up if you don’t yet have one)

Then you can start to create an ad. If you wish, you can create an ad aimed at generating more likes to your page or to generate more traffic to your website. If you are running an event you can also create an ad to publicise your event page on Facebook.

Facebook ads can be bought per click (CPC) or (CPI) this means that you pay per click through or amount of impressions your ad generates. The amount you pay per click and per thousand impressions depends on the competition in your niche.

There are currently 10 types of advertising categories on Facebook these are:

Facebook Ads Types

To set up your ad, simply go to 

Then follow the very simple instructions. Ads require you to include text, images and a description. You’ll get a set number of characters and your image should be of specific size. Make sure your image doesn’t have more than 20% text covering the image or your ad will not be approved. Make sure you create a catchy and clickable title to get people to click.

The biggest tip I can give you here is to set a budget and work out what ROI you would need to make it work. For example if you are selling products at £1.99 each and you are paying £1.oo per click this would mean you would probably not be making a profit. However if you are selling product for £100 each then £1 per targeted click would be a great return on investment.

[Tweet “Ensure that you customise your ads and test them on different audiences with different messages until you crack it! #FacebookAds”]

You can do all kinds of exciting targeting and re targeting campaigns once you have the basics down.

One of the great benefits of Facebook ads marketing is that you get access to a really powerful analytics tool called Page Insights, this gives you an idea how well your ads are performing, what’s working and what’s not. You’ll be able to see how many people see your ads, how many clicks you’ve received, fan page like growth and more. When you know what’s working and what’s not you can delve in more and start to create some really fantastic campaigns based on trial and error, until you hit the sweet spot and are continuously getting it right.

I would also recommend you watch the Facebook Video: How Facebook Ads Work

You can also get loads of advice from Facebook themselves at Facebook Business 

Have you started using a Facebook Ads yet? I would love to hear your case studies.

Do you want to learn more about Facebook Marketing? Would you like to know EVERYTHING you need to know about Facebook marketing in order to grow your business or personal brand? Then you’ll love my new online course – Facebook Success Academy – Starting on the 31st August – Enrolling now. 


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Be an Authority: How to gain audience trust on social media

Be an Authority: How to gain audience trust on social media

Social Media Marketing is mostly about building and maintaining trust of your audience. Being able to reach a huge audience is great but that doesn’t mean anything if that audience isn’t engaging with your social media posts! That’s why it’s really important for you to gain the trust of your audience / followers which will help you to establish yourself as the ‘go to’ or authority in your niche.

With that in mind, how does one go about building trust with relative strangers on social media?

Rome wasn’t built in a day

Before you begin your quest to build authority and trust in your niche you must understand it’s a long term thing, just like in real life people don’t suddenly trust you immediately, you’ll need to gain some credibility to do this you’ll need start to nurture your relationships and develop your content so you have something to make you seem more credible.

When people read your first social media posts, in all likely hood you’ll be ignored, if you can get your new audience to read your articles or share posts and you manage to touch them in some way this is a great start! But it’s unlikely these people will be paying customers at this point.

As you continue to create valuable content and solve problems for your target audience you’ll find that they’ll read more of your content and you’ll start to build relationships more but only if this content is good and your brand is on point. It’s very possible, that if people in your audience enjoyed your content each time it touches them that they’ll start to trust in what your saying and become a part of your community and an advocate for your brand meaning they’ll be paying attention to your content in future.

Over a period of time your audience will go from paying attention or taking note to actively seeking out your content, it’s here that you can start to make sales! This process could take months or even years and will only happen when you are consistently creating valuable content, speaking ad engaging with your community on social media But don’t mix up consistency with quality! It’s also really important that you get a lot of great content out there but it has to be top quality. Try to be accurate, interesting and ahead of the game with the content you create. There are heaps of tools out there out help you do this. (also my online course ‘social media authority’ covers all of this)

When you are consistently creating great, relevant, valuable content and your audience is sharing and reading that content as well as seeing you as the ‘go to person’ to ask questions about your niche then you know you have become a true thought leader.

Speeding up the process 

It doesn’t have to take years to gain your niche audiences trust and establish yourself as a thought leader, there are a few things you can do to speed things up!

1. Reach out to influencers in your niche that your audience already trusts, if they share your content or mention you this is like getting an endorsement and can really help to get you some more credibility in your niche. Periscope is a great place to do this as it’s such an instant and easy way to get close to your biggest influencers.

2. Engage with your audience, ask questions, make them feel involved and always answer their questions! Be yourself and be friendly, approachable and responsive.

3. Keep your eye on the leaders in your industry niche and see what they are doing, you’ll be able to tap into some of their follower base and pick up some pointers.

Some people rise to the top on social media and others just seem to stay where they are, this isn’t by accident there’s no luck involved, if you spend time working on your plan, goals, creating great content, reaching out to influencers, engage your audience and work hard, you’ll make it there too!

Come on my course! Social Media Authority: for a short time it’s £10 instead of £97 to those who are up for offering feedback.

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Twitter / Hootsuite Bulk Upload Productivity Hack

If you use the Hootsuite Bulk Upload Tool then you need to know about this! – If you are unsure what the bulk upload too is, let me explain:

Using Hootsuite you are able to schedule out tweets for certain times and days. One way to save some time is to export out your old tweets onto a CSV file, change the dates and times and import the CSV back in. The problem with this is that there is quite a lot of spreadsheet work to do here (boring – I hear ya!). What you need is a way to randomise the existing tweets as well as creating the dates and times very quickly ready to import straight back in to Hootsuite to be instantly scheduled out and save maybe 3 hours! I’ve found this little godsend! I was so excited about it in fact I did a whole periscope chat to show people how to do it, which is when I got the request for the write up, and here is that write up.

The tool is called CSV Builder and it’s pretty neat: – Very easy to use, self explanatory.

Let me give you a quick rundown on what to do if you are a newbie to scheduling on Twitter from Hootsuite using these tools:

Export out your existing tweets (if you have any)

Click: Publisher,  past scheduled and you’ll see a list of old tweets, at the top tick the box and press export to CSV.

Then copy the whole list of tweets (don’t include the dates, names etc)

The paste them into the CSV builder tool, choose start date and number of posts per day and press create file.

You’ll be taken to a list of your tweets and you can delete some and add images if required. Then simply export the CSV.

Back in Hootsuite under publisher go to bulk message upload. Choose your CSV file just created and press submit and boom! Your tweets are scheduled. This can save you so much time!

Check out my periscope to see the actual tutorial  This may be gone by now so check it on Katch

I hope this helped! let me know

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Writing a Great Business Bio For Your Social Media Profiles

Creating a great bio for your social media profiles

Creating a great bio for your social media profiles is important for your business. If you want to look professional and establish your authority on social media your profile should be the first thing you look at because it’s the first thing people look at when they want to see what you or your businesses is all about.

So how do you write a great bio for your social media profiles? what exactly do you need to think about? Here’s my 5 top tips!
Business or Personal

If you are writing a bio for your business and you are trying to gain more customers, network with professionals or trying to build a respected business reputation you will do much better to use a professional tone and style. In other words: Try to use professional terms, make sure your spelling and grammar is good. Don’t be too personal or controversial here.

Including a sprinkling of personality to your social media bio’s won’t hurt your business, in fact people do like to deal with real people and social media is meant for and in a personal and a social nature.
Clear and Concise 

Avoid jargon. It’s not all about sounding super clever (or super smug for that matter)! You objective should be to come across as clear and precise about what you do as possible. Buzzwords and Jargon are a major turn off and often distract the reader from your actual offering. Be really clear about what you offer just without the jargon.
Who is your Audience?

It can be hard to establish a tone on social media especially if your target audience is a completely different demographic to you. The trick here is to visualise or profile the typical person you are selling to and write as if you are explaining what you do to them. If you also use this as a rule of thumb for your blog posts and social media updates you’ll find using this tone very comfortable and genuine.

On social profiles and pages like LinkedIn and Facebook you normally get the chance to explain your accomplishments in detail later on in profile creation so there really is no need to say the same things that you will just go over later. Your bio should be efficient at telling people who you are and thus avoid covering ground that will only be addressed later.
Let someone else do it! 

After reading the above tips if you are still having problems trying to get your profile bio and tone right, you can always get someone else to do it for you. Not everyone is great at writing. But if you do decide to outsource your profile just be aware that your bio should still be ‘you’ and have your ‘voice’ and be reflective of your business or personality. Never just accept anything you outsource just because it’s paid for. If it’s not right go back and do it again.

Like these tips? You’ll love my free eBook – 30 Best Social Media Automation tools.

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4 Steps to writing a successful LinkedIn article

How to write a successful LinkedIn Article. LinkedIn is a powerful tool for connecting with customers and potential new business. There are now 347 million active users on the social network, numbers which are too large to just ignore.

If you are currently using linkedIn as a marketing and networking tool for your business you’ll have seen many people now publishing long from posts which is LinkedIn’s version of blogging.

The social network has now rolled out publishing to everyone. Which means there is a lot more competition when it comes to getting these long posts or articles read.

So how can your contributions cut through the crowd and be seen?

Some articles get a handful of views and some get hundreds or thousands very quickly! So what separates the Wheat from the Chaff?

Many people are using LinkedIn Publishing to promote events, Some are using it to promote products. But the best articles are those that offer true value with no sales pitch. They educate people, they are inspirational, aspirational. They make us think and they make us take action in our lives, careers or businesses.

  1. Choose a great title

A great title is the first thing people see – this title is the difference between a click to the main article or not.

Poor Title Examples:

  • New event launching
  • New blog up
  • ‘Your company name here’ launches new service

These titles won’t work as they offer no value to your reader and are over promotional, too much about you and your business than how you can help them or solve a problem.

Keep your titles educational and helpful If you are an expert in your industry then flaunt your expertise by revealing a new way of approaching a subject or teaching the Lay person how to do elements of your job themselves. This will show you as a leader in your industry, the GO TO person, the expert. If you showcase your expertise and give tons of value away, you’ll soon see a positive effect in terms of new leads, job prospects or relationships.

2 – Great Cover Image

If your cover image is a dull stock photo that everyone else is using people will automatically associate it with other content. The Key is to be Original here. Original, Eye Catching and related to your title!

Use free tools such as Canva or Pic Monkey to design your own image that reflects the originality and personality of the article. You can use elements of stock photos from places like Canva or Dollarphoto club. Check you have the correct cover image dimensions and create an image the right size for the space. This will make your posts look even more professional. And help your article stand out from the crowd and encourage more click thru

3 – Great Content

Once you have that perfect title and the perfect picture the content needs to be equally are great! It needs to do what it say’s on the tin.

Be original – Don’t write about the same things we’ve all seen before it makes for a very uninspiring read.

Use your insight and expertise to create an article that inspires people to take action.

Share content that will last the test of time. News and reactive articles are good but sharing Great Content that will provide value for weeks or even months to come will ensure you’ll increase your views and shares on LinkedIn. This content is evergreen and will last the test of time. By investing in creating a great article now means you’ll eventually save time, as you won’t be scrambling around for new content to share. It is preferable to write one GREAT article that gets views and shares month after month than to write a sub standard piece every week.

4 – Share

If you want those likes, shares and comments it’s time to start sharing. Don’t just post and run. Post and share to your LinkedIn feed, share in groups that will be interested in your content, share on Twitter, on Facebook, Pin the image to Pinterest, Instagram and so on. Share the article again In your email out. The bottom line is sharing increases awareness of your content.

Don’t just share once. Make a schedule as to when you will share your content in the future, this way more of your audience will see your article over time.


Lucy Hall



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DIY DIGTAL – Learn To Do Your Own Online Marketing! (video)

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7 Social Media Tools That Will Make Your Life Easier and help grow your business!

Creating great and shareable content, analysing it’s reach and effectiveness on social media has never been easier!
Now that social media is a normal part of the marketing process and not just a crazy idea thousands of amazing tools have been created to help you to be a fantastic marketeer for your own business or employer.

There are heaps of tools out there but how do you know which ones to use? I know what i’ll be using to make my life easier this year, with tons of campaigns to manage I have leant what works and what doesn’t.

Here I have compiled my list of tools I will be using more or less every single day in 2015:

1. Co-Schedule

Co-schedule is a drag and drop editorial calendar plugin for wordpress. If you blog and have a wordpress website this is one tool that will increase engagement of your posts and see your content hits easily double. The way it works is that when you post a new blog you can than share it from one place to many social networks at many different times. The dashboard also includes analytics so you can how many shares you’ve got and how much engagement you’ve received. Find out more about co-schedule here.

2. Canva

If you haven’t heard of canva yet, where have you been? Canva is an easy to use tool for creating graphics for social media and more. I even created my new email header in Canva this morning! They also have a library of templates whereby you can create content the correct size for each social network. Canva is free to use unless you opt for premium stock images in your designs.

3. Fiverr

Fiverr is a skill purchasing website whereby you can buy creative digital services for just $5! That’s right $5. This week I had a very professional podcast intro and outro created for $5 by a UK seller. He completed within an hour. You can get things done like have logo’s created, cover images for social media and much more. Just be weary of sellers offering 1000’s of likes or retweets! These will be fake accounts and will mess up your analytics! You can also check seller ratings and see feedback before you decide who to use. Find out about Fiverr here

4. Leadpages

Leadpages is the worlds easiest landing page generator! Giving away free content such as videos, ebooks and podcasts is the easiest and best way to build your audience. By creating an easy landing page with wordpress you can exchange content for opt-in email addresses easily. Leadpages integrates seamlessly with most email providers and other apps and services. I use leadpages for every single one of my clients, an email for a voucher or a telephone number for some free advice is a great way to get new leads for your business. Find out more

5. Mailchimp

I find Mailchimp an easy simple platform for sending email. And now they have an app called Mailchimp Snap whereby you can send an image and some text straight from your mobile device. I am using mailchimp for this email. It’s very simple to create optin boxes and on paid accounts you can also create automation.

6. Sprout Social

Sprout social is an easy to use scheduling and analytics dashboard for social media. Keep all of your social networking in one place and analyse your users in one easy to read dashboard. Sprout social is also a brilliant Social Media Management Tool for Businesses

Do you use any of these tools already or will you be? Is there anything you use that’s not mentioned here?

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What you need to get started online

I have compiled a list of what you need to get you started online! One without the other simply won’t work! – Don’t worry if anything on this list leaves you with hot flushes! In this blog series I will show you what you need to get started in a step by step format, you can read the information in your own time.

1. Idea / Product

2. Business Plan / Goals

3. Marketing Strategy

4. Website

5. Website Content

6. Blog Content / Content ideas

7. Email capture / List

8. Social Media Accounts

9. Tools & Software / Payment processing

10. Time & Knowledge

Once you have all of these in place you are ready to go! Don’t fret, as we go along you will learn how to set up, create and use everything I will show you! Use this as a checklist.

If you prefer to learn via video or speech or using accountability tools, you may want to join Social Media University! Find out more here.  I look forward to helping you discover your online marketing journey!

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